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Arrrrrrrghhhhhhhh! Coolant low on recently purchased 2.0 TDi

The_Sly_Fox Jan 31, 2008

  1. The_Sly_Fox

    The_Sly_Fox New Member

    Hi guys, new to this forum. Can anyone help?

    Just bought a 2003 A3 2.0 TDi from used car dealer. Drives like a dream. Only problem is, coolant level warning went off after a couple weeks driving. Coolant was low. Topped it up. Seems to be falling again. Have a 3 month warranty with dealer. They've taken it to their garage but so far no leak found.

    Then I read these posts about porous cylinder heads on this site and thought "whoops" shouldn't have bought that! And I was wondering why the last owner would want to sell such a nice car.

    My questions about this are:

    1. Please does anyone know how to find the VIN range of the ones at risk of a porous cylinder head ?

    2. If you had a porous cylinder head, how fast would the coolant drop - and would you get other symptoms (Like dropping oil levels - which I haven't had - or mayonnaise-like residue under the oil cap) or is that to do with the head gasket?

    3. Should I insist the car dealer should take it to an Audi dealer to do more extensive tests if no leak is found? Audi dealers don't seem very good according to the posts. Anyone know where is reliable?

    Cheers in advance
  2. TuffLittleUnit

    TuffLittleUnit Member


    I had a similar problem with coolant leakage in a Sportback (see spec in my sig below). The AA man who came out found evidence of coolant leakage from the radiator and was able to show me the white residue splashed all over (and I know nothing of cars). He pressurised the coolant tank and found evidence of a leak.

    The Audi dealership mechanics found nothing this first time around - not even when they (reportedly) pressurised the coolant. They simply topped up the coolant and contrary to everything in the manual about this being a sealed system told me it was fine. (Actually I challenged them on this asking if they accepted liability for any subsequent overheating or damage at which point they offered to strip down the engine AT MY COST because there was no apparent warranty related failure).

    Needless to say it happened again a couple of months later and the next AA guy found that a wire at the front of the engine had been vibrating and effectively sawed a small hole in the radiator which was gradually leaking coolant. He referred to it as a "design flaw". He wrapped the cable in foam and patched the leak then accompanied me to the Audi garage who this time took note and ended up replacing the radiator. Not sure what has been done with the wire that caused the problem but I've had no further reoccurence. Oh yeah ... the radiator was, of course, replaced under warranty.

    Hope this is useful.

    P.S. The hole in the radiator was on the side facing the engine block almost central (vertically and horizontally). Being non-technical I'm afraid I have no idea what the purpose of the wire which reportedly caused the problem is.
  3. Gti Jazz Blue

    Gti Jazz Blue Active Member VCDS Map User

    My 05 has just had a new radiator under warranty, the join between the core and end tanks had sprung a leak.

  4. Kev_M5KPL

    Kev_M5KPL Member

    My 04 2.0 TDI is having its replaced on Monday .

    under warranty where i purchased it from abotu 3 weeks ago.
  5. The_Sly_Fox

    The_Sly_Fox New Member

    Thanks for replies. They haven't found a leak yet but will get them to check those radiator areas.

    Was really looking for cylinder head info. Desperately need to find the VIN range of the defective ones.

    And if anyone knows of any place reliable for cylinder head assessment/replacement please could you let us know.

  6. The_Sly_Fox

    The_Sly_Fox New Member


    Tufflittleunit: Could you possibly send a picture of where you saw the leak if its easy to do?

    Gtijazzblue: Read one of your other posts about coolant leakage - how did you know your a3's VIN was in the "cylinder head issue" range?

    Kev:Was that the radiator or cylinder head you were getting replaced?

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