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Stop the clock...Start the thread-My baby is home

tcg Feb 9, 2016

  1. tcg

    tcg Registered User

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    Sorry guys...ranting again :sadlike:

    Ah man...I so much want to love my car but it just doesn't want to love me!

    My tyre man called me on Friday to get my wheels swapped over while he was quiet...I thought, today is going to be a good day, I'll pop by the care home and drop a treat in for my mum on the way, as we can't see each other during lockdown, then revel in the glory of admiring my sparkling wheels on my S3.

    Let's just check the oil before we go...as the dipstick comes out, so do some plastic fragments from the top of it and fly off. Luckily, I think, the bits flew off as the stick was out of the tube so fingers crossed on that one. Need to order one of those now. That just sums it up...DIPSTICK!

    Anyway, got to my tyre man and he swapped over the tyres and wheels, torqued them up and it's just the centre caps to pop on. As you can see from the picture above, they fit nice and flush, after I had to cut back some plastic tabs on the rear of them. You would push them in until they stop leaving a small gap then you just had to 'whack' them with the palm of your hand and they clicked into place...easy.

    Well, that's what we thought until we realised, after severe bruising to the palm of my hand, that with the hubcentric spacers on, the centre caps would not 'click' into place and just kept popping out again, and again.

    ARRGGGHHHH!!!

    Left there with the centre caps banished to the boot, feeling totally deflated. After a couple of hours stewing and mentally writing out 'FOR SALE' adverts in my head, I felt brave enough to face the car alone in my garage, just the two of us, man to man!

    I managed to find some thin double sided tape and stuck some to the inner wheel and back of the centre cap and pressed firmly. I had to remove the metal 'o' ring that locates behind the wheel for the caps to fit flush. Certainly not ideal and not sure what will happen after a few heat/wash cycles.

    Got some hi-temp double sided on the way, should be here June...

    ...2023 and thinking about maybe magnets, bonded to the back of the cap, something like these...

    https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/small-large-NEODYMIUM-MAGNETS-1mm-2mm-3mm-thick-Round-Rings-Cylinder-Discs/132012556278?_trkparms=aid=111001&algo=REC.SEED&ao=1&asc=20160811114145&meid=7ea6a59ec8f24bfcb055c847637973b8&pid=100667&rk=4&rkt=8&mehot=pp&sd=172812195870&itm=132012556278&pmt=1&noa=0&pg=2334524&brand=Unbranded&_trksid=p2334524.c100667.m2042

    Not sure of strength, size, etc. so research needed there. That's what bugs me about my S3, it always seems to bite me. I rarely look back at my car when I leave it and we all know that we do when we love them. I really thought that with these spacers and refurbished wheels on the car, it would make me want to look back and feel good. Instead if I look back, it will be to check how many centre caps are still on the car.

    I've driven 30 miles or so and they're still there. At least I've added a fair bit to my S3's scrap value now, as they're not perfect, but a vast improvement regardless.

    Here's the results...

    IMG_20200516_103025.jpg





    IMG_20200514_162121.jpg

    IMG_20200516_102953.jpg
     
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  3. spiker

    spiker trying to growl less these days

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    Dont give up man - she looks good for the new wheels
     
    tcg likes this.
  4. Asim1

    Asim1 Registered User

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    I buy alot of them magnets for various bits and Bob's and have to say they are quite strong. Not sure about for your caps. Dont want to say they are and they drop off
     
    tcg likes this.
  5. tcg

    tcg Registered User

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    Cheers guys...need to sort something better than tape...magnets seem a good shout @Asim1 , just need to explore further.
     
  6. Asim1

    Asim1 Registered User

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    Like I said they are strong little buggers..if you can find a way to sit 4 maybe 4 around might work for around ten and low speed driving and take em off if you hit motorways. The problem will end up being when you get to comfortable with them on your car and forget to take them off
     
  7. tcg

    tcg Registered User

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    Thought about bonding 4/5 magnets to wheel and cap in the hope they would be strong enough and to remove the cap, I'm thinking maybe turning the cap to disengage the magnets...sound plausible?
     
  8. ADs3

    ADs3 Active Member Silver Supporter

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    I had the same problem with my centre caps, I had to remove the metal ring to get them to clip on. My wheels are genuine so it's nothing to do with them not being genuine but that caps arent genuine so perhaps that's where the issue lies with them, i had wondered if it was the powder coating thickness that wasnt helping......so far they've stayed on for a few thousand miles & have held up to 100+ on private roads of course
     
  9. tcg

    tcg Registered User

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    Been quiet on the S3 front, no doubt that'll change soon as it's in for a service and check up in a couple of weeks for it's MOT in October at Audi.I did have some good fortune recently though.

    Don't hate me too much,we all know we're a bunch of piranhas on here,trawling the ebay ocean for that monster catch...and I got one,a facelift headlight switch in mint condition for less than a 'pony'...

    IMG_20200829_132005.jpg

    Trouble is I'm in two minds whether to fit it or place it in a display cabinet as a piece of rare art :blink: most likely the second option for now.

    I'm sure there's plenty of you on here with a large spares collection...is it us?...or just the car that causes it?

    Stay safe guys.
     
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  10. Tj 0785

    Tj 0785 Registered User Bronze Supporter Silver Supporter VCDS Map User

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    Looks brand new that bargain that, I do like a Bargin and I am guilty of buying spares parts because they rare and hard to get or just cheap, I’ve got mute cupholders than I have wheels for my car ha
     
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  11. S3AMJ

    S3AMJ OEM+

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    I wouldn’t want to get any finger prints on that lee alone fit it..... looks brand new! Nice find.

    I was struggling for ages to find one and ended up getting the “hard” plastic looking one.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  13. tcg

    tcg Registered User

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    Had to swap out my scratched original for a pre-facelift one with the manual adjustment after I got the car so now I have 3 switches :blush:

    I wanted to look into the auto lights mod but didn't want to cut the new knob so I can at least look into making the hole bigger in the scratched one.Only trouble is I think the size of the hole to fit the new knob would mean another under dash panel to cut as well.
     
  14. tcg

    tcg Registered User

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    Had an advisory on the last MOT for front indicators not being bright enough so I thought I'd refresh all the bulbs in the headlights with...

    IMG_20200830_092046.jpg

    I've gone for 5000K dipped and main beam plus the pair of EM Tuning sidelight bulbs and some LED indicator bulbs. I forgot to take any before/after pictures to compare headlights but did remember one of the indicators...here's the difference between old OEM and new LED bulbs...

    indicatorf.jpg

    No trouble spotting my car being unlocked in a car park now, just need to get some for the back as the difference is 'night & day'.

    Service and pre MOT check next week :blink:
     
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  15. tcg

    tcg Registered User

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    Close up pic of the new headlight bulbs...for me, I think the high beam bulbs gives it a nice blue tint...
    IMG_20200912_105031.jpg
     
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  16. tcg

    tcg Registered User

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    Morning all...good start to the week :huh:

    My car was in for it's service yesterday and about a week ago it had started to 'pull back' under full load, so we all know that is usually plugs/coilpack related and it is a 'misfire cylinder 4'...need a new coilpack and my mech advises to replace them in pairs, so 2 & 4 to change.

    Need to find some cheap coilpacks...anyone tried the ebay ones that come with a warranty?

    Also, yes there's more, do these cars have AI?...did it know it was in for a service?...on Saturday when I drove it, it started to 'squeal like a pig'.

    So embarrassing, driving around with everyone staring at me (usually that only happens when I'm out of the car!).

    Turns out it's the aux belt tensioner...so need to find out how to get that off, maybe some grease will help but expect I'll have to replace that as well.

    Who said these cars a money pit?...I think mine is a money crater!

    Any suggestions welcome guys.
     
  17. tcg

    tcg Registered User

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    Well I got on and removed the tensioner and managed to remove the plastic wheel. As par for the course with my S3, there was only two bolts holding the tensioner on, not three :wtf:

    Ordered a replacement wheel off ebay, should be here in a couple of days. Out with the pushbike again, best bit of fitness equipment I've ever bought is my S3, gets me out on my bike more than ever. Then off down to Audi to order the bolts and two coilpacks.

    I'll write it up when it's back together...damn car!
     
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  18. tcg

    tcg Registered User

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    So that was fun!...picked up the parts from Audi yesterday and when I got home I noticed the bolts were slightly shorter than the two I removed. They were the right ones according to ETKA so will have to speak to the dealership about that.

    And the reason there was only two bolts fitted was because the third thread had been stripped so I ended up putting the two old bolts back in with plenty of threadlock...I'm not happy only having two so will have to get that sorted at a later date. The thing is, if I hadn't removed the tensioner, I wouldn't have known and now I know, it bugs me!

    Ignorance is bliss.

    Anyway, on to the job in question...I have thin arms and hands so I was able to do it by just undoing the charge pipe where it joins metal to rubber, take off the clamps, then lever the charge pipe out of the way...

    IMG_20200915_110026.jpg

    To slacken the tensioner I used a long 15mm spanner (or 11/16 AF will do) and pulled it towards the front of the car until I could lock it off. To lock it off I used one of my cheap 4mm drill bits. I tried a 5mm, which fits the holes, but it was too long, there wasn't enough space to thread it through. I had to put the drill bit into the outside hole of the tensioner before I pulled it back to lock off...sorry guys, no photo of that (too much frustration) but hopefully you get the idea.

    The tensioner sits behind a bracket with the charge pipe bracket fitted onto this piece...

    IMG_20200915_141212.jpg

    It is tight in there but I managed to get the bolts out using a combination of 13mm ring spanners and stubby and long 13mm sockets. I just had to keep changing angles with my skinny hands, more fiddly than anything. Plus when you drop a tool, the engine bay vending machine sends it down the engine undertray and spits it out on the floor underneath the car...hey, I won again, another 13mm spanner to pick up!

    So once undone, I slid it down a bit and managed to wiggle it back up past the front of the alternator to freedom. With the tensioner on the bench you can remove the wheel with a Torx T40 bit...

    IMG_20200915_141315.jpg

    I bought a new wheel off ebay, plenty for sale as it's a generic part for the 1.8T engine...

    https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Fits-AUDI-A3-TT-SEAT-LEON-1-6-1-8-2-0-Fan-Belt-Tensioner-Pulley-V-Ribbed-Belt/123859779177?ssPageName=STRK:MEBIDX:IT&_trksid=p2060353.m2749.l2649

    A comparison new and old...

    IMG_20200916_160931.jpg

    Gave the tensioner a clean up and slapped some engine paint on the charge pipe bracket (and three useless bolts)...
    IMG_20200917_143448.jpg

    Also found this split pipe in the process...
    IMG_20200820_154059.jpg

    Is that the one going to the servo?...it was still on the fitting but it had gone rock solid and split and must have been leaking. I cut off the split piece then used a heat gun to gently warm it and a metal punch tapered end to ease open the pipe.

    All back together, coilpacks fitted and started up the car...is it?...is it?...no, it's fine and no squealing.

    Out for a few miles test run today and no holding back under load, no screeching....I hate to say this but, it seems to be behaving itself. I might get another two coilpacks from Audi to replace my old pair, only charged me £50.06 plus vat for the two, that seems a good price.

    MOT next month :blink:
     
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  19. rhubarb4

    rhubarb4 Certified Audi nutter Gold Supporter

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    Hi, where did you get the bump stops and the other plasticky/rubbery things for the rear springs.
    Thanks

    Chris.
     
  20. tcg

    tcg Registered User

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  21. rhubarb4

    rhubarb4 Certified Audi nutter Gold Supporter

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  22. tcg

    tcg Registered User

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    :rage: MOT = FAIL :rage:

    Rear brake lines corroded!...also advisories for both ball joints and steering rack boots....not good.

    Having read plenty of posts on here about problems with bleeding these brakes I'll leave that one alone so it's booked in with my mechanic to do those next week so I'm 'carless' again, seems to be a common event with S3 8L ownership.
     
  23. S3AMJ

    S3AMJ OEM+

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    I had to replace my rear brake lines a couple years back mate don’t get to beat up about it. Unfortunately our cars are getting on a bit, there are far worse cars out there...... be glad you don’t own a Peugeot haha, my poor mum had replaced 3 rear axles in her ownership.

    keep us updated on how you get on
     
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  24. tcg

    tcg Registered User

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    Cheers mate...I get my MOT free at Audi and I'm lucky as I don't need my S3 daily but, if I was a 'normal punter', the Audi quote for brake lines and labour was around £1500 and the car has to be fixed before it gets an MOT due to the law nowadays so a lot of people could get shafted.

    At least I can take it to my mechanic, just for the brake pipes at Audi they were £200, my man said he'll be able to get them for about £60-£70. Even then, I couldn't get it booked in until next week so out with the pushbike again!

    I'm getting him to do the ball joints and steering boots at the same time and also replace the brake fluid as I expect that has never been done in the car's lifetime knowing how these S3's have been looked after by previous owners.
     
  25. tcg

    tcg Registered User

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    Well that was interesting...are you sitting comfortably?

    Dropped off my S3 for my mechanic on Tuesday morning and got a call from him within an hour...we all know that's not a good sign and it wasn't. When he was inspecting the ball joints, etc. he noticed that the rear bushes on both lower arms had split (that wasn't noted on the MOT) and he wasn't happy leaving the car like it.

    Like most people on here, I'd intended to uprate the bushes at some point but other things took their place on the never ending list we have so I just let him decide what to do and he found some 'pattern' lower arms that he was happy to fit. For the pair of them with ball joints included it came to £218, so not too bad, about half the price of oem ones, I think he said.

    Picked up the car that afternoon and drove it the couple of miles to the dealership to get it retested. Finally got the car back on Saturday with a new MOT.

    I won't be taking up the option of a free MOT with AUDI anymore, with the new MOT law I think I've learnt my lesson, next year it will go to my mechanic...I know I can trust him plus on the second MOT the dealership gave the rear brake pipes as a monitor advisory for corrosion when they'd just been changed for new ones. They also noted (as minor defect) the chip I have had on the windscreen since buying the car, but never mentioned that on the failed MOT the first time, very frustrating.

    I didn't bother to have a rant at them, just got the paperwork and left.

    So now I have fresh fluid in the brakes and they feel better, also when the car had it's tracking done I got them to straighten my steering wheel, which has always been slightly off centre since I bought the car.

    Also with the new lower arms and bushes, the front end feels much 'tighter', quite a difference from before so there have been some positives.

    Took it for a blast around the ring road, just to confirm!
     
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  26. S3AMJ

    S3AMJ OEM+

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    Good news that you’ve got an MOT now. Painful experience getting there mate! I’d never take my S3 to a dealer.... never had good experiences with them, they ALWAYS seem to find something wrong. A trusted mechanic is worth there weight in gold! Now you can enjoy the car
     
  27. tcg

    tcg Registered User

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    When I got my car back in 2016, the dealership were really friendly and helpful, unlike most places like that. Unfortunately the franchise changed and it gradually got less inviting and more like you would expect. The last couple of years it seems to have got worse and the covid pandemic has made it even more unwelcoming due to the restrictions put in place.

    Just a relief to get back on the road, still struggle to love my S3...it just keeps on wanting!
     
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