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A3 1.6 sport problems

peeved Nov 7, 2012

  1. peeved

    peeved New Member

    Hi all have a 1998 A3 1.6 sport with an AEH engine just done the head gasket on it and it continues to have problems...
    Have been running it from last Friday from start up the heaters are working (blowing hot air) but I have noticed that the bottom radiator hose to the thermostat is not even slightly warm, even though every other pipe is roasting? Also it seems when I get on a motorway and the revs are high the tempeture gauge starts to drop! and the heaters get slightly cooler. On the way up the road after about a 6 mile drive the tempeture gauge did not even move, I pull into a petrol station and open the expansion tank cap hardly even a hiss of pressure, I check the oil filler cap and it has a very shall I say fine puffy oil water mayoneisse. Put the cap back on and tempeture gauge is at 90 and heaters are working?

    Whats been done or replaced.

    New radiator
    New thermostat
    New water pump
    New timing belt and tensioner
    New head gasket and bolts
    G13 Coolant
    Head and rocker cover extensively cleaned of oil water mix from previous head gasket failure.
    Oil changed

    Head skimmed and checked for any cracks none
    Cylinder bores checked for any cracks clear
    All coolant pipes flushed cleaned and checked for blockages

    This is my first experience with a VW Audi and I have to say that although its easy enough to work it, it appears to be a complete pile of unreliable rubbish? Had Vauxhalls and Peugeots before and not as much hassle as this pile of junk? And a lot less tempromental and 100% more reliable What gives?

    I have searched forums and found people with the same problems but no clear answer except of course a head gasket, which obviously it cannot now be, any help or experiences on this would be appreciated if this doesn't work I will be giving it a viking funeral! :lmfao:
  2. peeved

    peeved New Member

    Back again...problems persist I have done a compression test on the cylinders today and the results are as follows

    • Cylinder 1 201 psi
    • Cylinder 2 202 psi
    • Cylinder 3 198 psi
    • Cylinder 4 199 psi

    I suddendly lost all the heating in the car and the water was not circulating, big gas build up in the expansion tank and boiling water chucking out, noticed the coolant flange had blown out, replaced it with a new one found some sticky sludge in it, checked water pump by removing bottom hose and cranking it over its fine, all the hoses have been removed and re-checked, the left hand heater matrix pipe is cold the right is warm, ran a garden hose through it and water is going through it.

    I simply don't understand this, the head has been pressure tested and is fine it now looks like the cylinders are sealing at near perfect levels, yet I still have this problem! I inspected all the bores when doing the head gasket and there was no sign of any cracks? There are only 2 things left to check

    • Replace the heater matrix, (I really don't want to do this) although I stuck a hose through it and water was going through it
    • Replace the metal piping that goes from around the thermostat housing


    Someone somewhere must have had this problem before and fixed it? Need help!
  3. peeved

    peeved New Member

    Ok whipped the head off again, alot of the black viton coating on the gasket is gone after only 6 months or so and the gasket is starting to corrode in places. I found a crack between cylinders 3 & 4 on the 4th cylinder at the thinnest part. I'm typing this up to perhaps save some other poor sap trawling the internet for a solution to this problem from going through all the **** I have been through to find it.

    Ithappened like this

    The orginal duralite plastic water pump failed, cracked right down the middle, the car has been run for a long period with the coolant not properly circulating and has overheated badly causing the crack in the cylinder liner.

    The early symptoms of a cracked liner is the coolant mysteriously going missing but having no leaks in the coolant system, this is not a constant thing through it depends on driving conditions. Gradually it will get worse and the coolant system, airlocked with gases from the cracked liner will stop circulation and bake the head gasket. The temp that viton (the black lining on the head gasket) fails is around 250 degrees when that eventually happens the seal around the head gasket will fail and the engine along with it.

    I bought this second hand and the owner had craftily replaced the coolant bottle and put new coolant in the engine, along with cleaning the oil cap to hide this problem, within 2 weeks of driving the coolant started to discolour and the symtoms begain.

    VW and duralite water pumps have a lot to answer for :/
  4. Vex182

    Vex182 Guess what I drive...

    You don't seem to be having much luck! The 1.8ts don't have many common head gasket failures but not sure on the 1.6s. Very odd sounding with the issues you have had. The plastic water pumps are common failing on all the engines though.
  5. peeved

    peeved New Member

    I have worked on cars a long time and to be honest have never run into a cracked cylinder before, probably I am going to scrap it, although I might try wedging a piece of very thin steel between the cylinders and some metal epoxy around it whack a new head gasket on, nothing to lose trying it.

    Being a constant customer of the water tap in most garages I have been surprised how many newer audis and vw are there with the same disappearing coolant stories, at least they have a warranty to fall back on. Very hard to diagonise as the heaters work fine while the engine seemingly cooks itself without your knowledge. Suppose I should have inspected harder when I was last doing the head gasket :/

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