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Another "16804 efficiency below threshold" question!

Discussion in 'A3/S3/Sportback (8P Chassis)' started by jimmo, Oct 24, 2013.

  1. jimmo
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    jimmo Member

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    [Oct 24, 2013]
    Hi folks...

    I've got the dreaded 16804 "efficiency below threshold" fault code (which seems to be not too uncommon from the searches I've done). In my case, the car is a 2010 S3 and is (or should be, it had one previous owner) totally standard, no remap etc.. I've been clearing the code in VCDS to see how long it takes to reappear and it's usually popping the "check engine" light back on within a few days.

    It sailed through its MOT emissions test and the fault had been showing for at least a month or two before that but I had my friendly garage run diags on the O2 sensor and the cat anyway. They said the O2 sensors checked out fine but a test if the cat showed that it wasn't effective enough to keep the O2 B1 P2 (bank 1, post 2 I believe) stable.

    Now, that MOT was it's 3rd birthday MOT. Should a cat be failing after just 3 years? I've been quoted £1200 all in to have it replaced with a genuine Audi cat. It doesn't make any difference to the way the car drives, so I could just keep clearing the fault and ignoring it until either I can afford the replacement or the emissions cause it to fail an MOT. I don't like driving around with the orange light on, partly because it's annoying to see but mostly because any other more serious fault would be masked by the light already being on.

    Any advice? Bite the bullet and get it replaced or is there any other alternative? The chaps at my friendly garage said that, in their opinion, they wouldn't recommend aftermarket cheaper cats because they've seen many of them fail again not too long after installation and that it ends up being a false economy. I'm not sure if that matches with your experience.

    Cheers!
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  3. NHN
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    NHN Retrofitter - Audi - VW - Skoda - Seat Site Sponsor VCDS Map User

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    [Oct 24, 2013]
    Definitely go to the dealer, 3 years old just now, they will look at goodwill, as a cat realistically shouldn't show signs of failure after 3 years from my readings on various forums, I know if a cars got a full VAG SH, they do look at these things & given its just literally out of warranty, its quite possible they will resolve it for either free or with a substantial contribution.
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  4. A3Kent
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    A3Kent Different Gear

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    [Oct 24, 2013]
    Agree with Nigel. The Dealer should be willing to help out with the cost as a gesture of goodwill, providing you've had it regularly serviced at an Audi Dealer.

    I had a 2007 A3 that at the time, just came out of warranty and then needed a new DSG box. They covered most of the cost!
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  5. jimmo
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    jimmo Member

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    [Oct 25, 2013]
    Thanks folks.

    It's got a mixed service history; some Audi and its 3 year one at the Seat/Skoda shop as they don't charge quite the same eye-watering rates that the Audi shop does :)

    Besides, when I first bought the car three months before its warranty expired, it had a minor problem with the parking sensors which my local Audi service shop refused to touch, pointing to slightly recessed sensors and claiming that this was evidence of a minor impact. Maybe they were right but fixing that would have been chump-change next to a cat, so I don't hold out much hope. I will ask anyway.
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  6. c_w
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    c_w Active Member

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    [Oct 25, 2013]
    Full AUDI SH shouldn't affect the outcome on something like this. If they did it can quite easily be argued that servicing has nothing to do with the longeivity or performance of the cat, and the warranty remains intact whoever services it anyway.
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  7. NHN
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    NHN Retrofitter - Audi - VW - Skoda - Seat Site Sponsor VCDS Map User

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    [Oct 25, 2013]
    We're talking about the fact the cars warranty has expired & unfortunately that is the exact stance audi are taking now, straight from the horses mouth I was advised, whether we agree or not.
    #6
  8. jimmo
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    jimmo Member

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    [Oct 29, 2013]
    Yeah, I gave Camberley Audi a call this morning and I'm booked in for an inspection next Friday (8th) after which they'll decide what, if anything, they're willing to do under goodwill etc..

    Fingers crossed.

    Sigh...I've got a boiler on the blink and yesterday I discovered a pinhole leak near a compression joint in a radiator pipe. The gradual accumulation of things-that-cost-money-to-fix is really starting to stress me out :)
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  9. WALTO TDI
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    WALTO TDI Member

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    [Oct 30, 2013]
    Let us know how you go on - good luck!!!
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  10. jimmo
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    jimmo Member

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    [Nov 14, 2013]
    Quick update: the Audi service centre confirmed that there was a fault with the catalytic converter and the rep who was dealing with me said she'd "put a case into HQ because these really shouldn't fail on a car this age". However, she also said that there were no promises...but she'd call me back (hopefully soon) with news.

    Will report back when I hear something! :)
    #9
  11. jimmo
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    jimmo Member

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    [Nov 21, 2013]
    Latest update: Audi have offered a 50% discount on the cost of replacing the cat and, if a manufacturing defect is found upon inspection, I might get a wee bit more taken off. I think that's a good outcome under the circumstances!

    They also recommended proactively replacing the lambda sensors and I'm also showing an active charcoal filter fault (might be because I brimmed the tank?). Doing the sensors + the cat with the goodwill discount is still nudging a grand, so I'll leave the ACF until the new year!
    #10

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