My Audi S2 index

January 2003

A new year and the first sign of performance problems on the car. It was still quick but not S2 quick. Top end acceleration was struggling - even a BMW 318iS was difficult to outrun. I also had bouncing revs causing problems. It was making the car difficult to drive and I was riding the clutch to compensate.

If I was approaching a roundabout and I changed down a gear the revs would bounce down to zero and then bounce back up again after I let the clutch out. This meant that in the new gear the car would lurch forward. I could ride the clutch to lessen the effect of the lurch but clutches are expensive, especially on the S2.

I was not enjoying the experience and decided to change the throttle cutoff valve as it appeared to be related to both faults. A new cutoff valve 034 145 710B was obtained from Vag Parts for 24 delivered and duly fitted. The method for changing the part can be seen here

Has the fault been fixed ? Performance wise - defintely yes. The car is significantly quicker and the boost builds quickly again. The old part was original I suspect as it was an A revision. The bouncing revs have not appeared as predominant but I've not been driving the car much so it's hard to tell.

February 2003

February is always MOT time and I've never had a major problem with the car passing. This time was not so straightforward and I was not particularly happy at my usual tester. The nearside front tyre was failed due to what was deemed to be a gouge. I'm not sure if it was a gouge or if it was a part of the missing tread on that edge but I don't usually argue too much as I use the same place each year.

I shouldn't really complain too much because the tyre was in a rather poor state. The Nurburgring trip from the previous June had done a good job of ensuring that the outer edges of the front tyres were worn. The grip levels had been so high, that the tyres took some major abuse. I was literally throwing the car into the corners and the tyres were doing the work.

The problem with outside edge wear on a tyre is that the tyre becomes weighted to the edge with the wear. This means that the edge in question will start to wear out much faster. Hence the need for new tyres after only 8000 miles or so. The new tyres were the same as before - Good Year F1 Eagles - at a price of 176.

The only other fail point was a rear number plate bulb not working. This was not due to the bulb. The fault was caused by corrosion on the terminals for the wiring going in. As I attempted to remove the terminal to clean it, the spade broke completely. I was able to repair it by stripping the wires back and fitting a new spade.

The car then passed the MOT with no problems.

April 2003

In an attempt to reduce the amount of fuel the car was using, I took the opportunity to replace the lambda sensor (aka Oxygen Sensor). Typical mpg was 18 miles per gallon which was considerably below what the car should be achieving.

Rather than pay the full Audi price of 175 + vat, I purchased a Bosch part direct from the local Bosch agent. This was a direct fit replacement part at a cost of 57 + vat. This has the advantage of being a direct replacement for the original probe and removes the need to splice wires or crimp connectors in place.

The Bosch part number was 0 258 003 957. This is the equivalent of the Audi part number 034 906 265 C.

Full details of the replacement can be seen here.

Only time will tell if the fuel consumption improves.

May 2003

While the fuel consumption improved slightly, the lambda probe change did not change things as much as I expected. With the car approaching 40,000 miles since the last plug change, I decided to change the plugs. This was really killing two birds with the one stone as I was changing the rocker cover gasket at the same time. There was a slight oil leak at the rear of the head which was allowing oil to drip onto the temperature sender which is located at the rear of the head.

Full details of the replacement of the gasket can be seen here.

while the plug change is on a seperate page here.

I also removed the MAF sensor and cleaned it by leaving it in a bath of IPA chemical cleaner overnight.

Since these changes, the car is pulling stronger and mpg has risen to an indicated ~22 mpg on the computer. Since the computer is pessimisstic and reads low by about 3mpg, I'm reasonably happy with this.

June 2003

It's time to get the timing belt done on this car. It was first changed at 52000 miles and the mileage is currently just on or around 117000. Mileage is hard to judge exactly due to the speedo change at 55,6xx odd miles.

I'm not planning on doing this myself for a couple of reasons. First is, I don't have the necessary tools. I'd need to buy a cam locking tool and a mammoth torque wrench. The crank bolt gets tightened to 350 Nm if using the special VAG cam locking tool. Torque wrenches which cover that amount of torque cost money which I'm reluctant to spend for what may be a one off use.

The other reason for not doing it is an economic one. I've never changed a timing belt in my life before for the reasons above. If I do it wrong, which is possible, a new head for this car is ~2k. Far better to get a garage who know what they're doing to do it (I'm using a Bosch agent who specialise in Audis and VWs). So that's what's been arranged. First time out wasn't too successful, since they hadn't ordered all the parts. Timing belt, water pump, tensioner roller, crank bolt plus the power steering belt and alternator drive belt. These last two items are being done for convenience over anything else. The PAS belt is starting to crack quite badly and the alternator belt is a pig to change. It's been on since I got the car so it won't do any harm changing it. I'm expecting the total bill to be around the 250 mark which is less than 10% of the cost if the belt failed.

September 2003

Some good news and some bad news for this latest update. The good news is that during a recent holiday in Germany, covering a total of approx 2500 miles, the car performed faultlessly. This included several laps of the Nurburgring and also high speed autobahn cruising towards Ingolstadt and back. No problems with the brakes which makes a change.

The bad news is that the car is now no more. When returning home late on a Sunday night I encountered surface water under a bridge. The "surface water" turned out to be deep surface water. This resulted in water entering the engine and also caused alectrical problems when it entered the interior of the car under the rear seat.

As a result of this, the car has been declared an insurance write off by my insurance company. More details will follow when I know more.

December 2003

Well, it only took 9 weeks for an insurance company to work out that a car flooded by water cannot be repaired. You learn a few things with this experience. One is, never trust an insurance company and secondly always deal in writing - not by telephone. Much of this time has been spent negotiating a true market value for the car. The first offer was a plain insult - just under #5000 less my excess. This has since been increased by over #2000 and I also get the car back.

This last part is significant as it allows me to claw back the difference between what I received and what I should have received. I am currently breaking up the old car and many parts are still available.

I now have a replacement car which will be the feature car for this site going forwards. In hindsight, this could be a blessing in disguise. thew car is a newer 1994 model and it's ocvered roughly 77000 miles. There are a couple of minor defects but overall, it's in superb condition. It's Ragusa Green which is a very dark green metallic. The defects which need fixed are a faulty thermostat and the outside temperature display is not lighting up. Performance wise it feels slightly down. This will be investigated shortly.