S4 won't start, please advise?


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Jul 11, 2012
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Hi all, I am suffering a repeat problem with my 90k mile 2004 S4, can anyone help?

After a long trip home at the end of the week I stop the car and leave it in the driveway, the next morning I go out to start it and it won't start. I have tried the following but can not find a consistant fix.

1. New battery in key fob ( battery not neaded for mobiliser deactivation)

2. Using 2nd key (also with new battery), seemed to work once.

3. Long journy leaves the tank with 10 miles of fuel in it so I put in 5 litres from a can at home and this seemed to help start it but I cant believe its the problem, unless AUdi in thier wisdom won't allow you to start a vehicle with low fuel? My 200k Passat TDI and A4 Avant never had this issue and I reg run them to zero. this has work twice.

4. Thinking it s a fuel pressure problem I have tried releasing pressure by removing fuel filler cap.

Nothing above seems to be a garunteed fix but it does start eventually after about 30 mins allthough the fuel top up seems to help but I think its purely coincedental.

Has anyone else found this problem, if so what could be causing this. So far its only happpened in my driveway but I work over 200 miles from home and can only imagine what would happen if it occured soemwhere else.

Look forward to anyones thoughts on this?

Is the car being parked on the level ?? Running the car that low ain't doing anybody any favours m8
Running the car that low should not make any difference, I spoke to an independant specialist and they reckon the car should be able to go 20 miles below zero before running out of fuel and it should stop the car starting unless of course it is empty. My PAssat ussed to go 4 miles below zero and never had a problem starting.

I faield to mention the fact that the car doesn't actually turn over when the problem arrisies, it's as if the emobiliser is active. I am not sitting there turning it over trying to start it.
Well that changes things then so could be the starter motor or immobiliser issue.....
im free this afternoon , NR146HD no 46 opposite turning for Autotechnic Merc specialists
the immobilizer will still let the car turnover
you have a bad starter or a wireing problem
Next time you go out to it try and start with the door open you may hear the starter click every time you try it could be a sticking solenoid I have the same problem on my tdi I started a thread not too long ago
i do get a click but not a large load click like what you'd expect from a solenoid, but you could be onto something Stu.

yup sounds like its the same as mine its not a massive click but you can hear it

dont forget its in the engine bay so you wont hear it that loud

it could be one of two things a sticking solenoid or the actual starter not turning and the gear sticking on the fly wheel

you could always try and rock it in gear if it is the gear sticking it will free it
99% starter, i had exactly the same with my s4 it would be fine for days on end then go to it in the morning and nothing. i would try different keys etc the same as you with no joy then go back to it an hour later and it was fine. i had mine reconditioned and it would appear its very common on the s4 but is a bit of a swine of a job although mine was much easier as the engine was out at the time!
it barely looks big enough to start a lawn mower does it!

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