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AUDI A3 - power steering


And finally my last issue…
In November my wheel got locked when trying to put my key in the ignition and couldn’t be turned and started.
After a good few weeks the garage brought a specialist in that replaced the ignition shaft in the wheel and did the electrics so the key would match it.

All fine and dandy except the power steering yellow light was on, I was told to drive it as much as poss and it would go off. I did that but unfortunately was out of town for a few months, the light stayed on. But didn’t have a chance to take it back. The power steering at this point worked fine.

2 weeks ago I took my car in to the garage for spark plug issues and they said they would take a look at the steering issue. Got the car back later that day and they couldn’t get the sensor off and said they would have to get a specialist in the next day. At this point was when the power steering went, really heavy to turn.

The specialist the next day said that it needs a new steering rack! I couldn’t believe it so took it for another opinion.

The latest garage are convinced it’s the sensor that needs realigning and reprogramming but are struggling doing it.

Anyone have advice on this and if it is a difficult thing to do?

You’ve had more problems and more drama with this car than I’ve had with all my cars over many years.

Either you need a different vehicle or from the sounds of things, quite likely, different “mechanics” at a different shop.

I think that by now, a reputable Audi dealer service department would have been a better option.


Once sorted I will be looking for a new car.
To be fair up until the past few months it’s been great, I think the only thing that’s been wrong with it was a nail in a tyre

This is a common situation with more expensive, more complicated cars. Fantastic to own and drive until they need service. Difficult, touchy, expensive service. It used to affect mostly BMWs, Audis, Mercedes and similar. These days the technology has trickled down to cheaper brands with similar results.

I was thinking similar earlier, these onboard computers seem to be nothing but extra hassle it seems.

I’m hoping it’s not the steering rack as that is a bloody expensive job it seems

Does this car have electric/electronic power steering?
If it does, I think that a problem with the PS motor is much more likely than a problem with the steering rack.
As was already stated, a visit to an Audi dealer’s service department is in order at this point, as the OP’s current mechanic does not appear to have the necessary expertise to diagnose and repair this car.

Yes it’s electronic.

The chap working on it used to work for Audi and has a good rep for sorting these problems out, which is why I took it there.

Are Audi dealers more expensive?

Well, to put it into perspective, they are probably no more expensive than Mercedes or BMW dealers, but that does translate into…potentially pricey.

A single relatively expensive diagnosis and repair of a problem can be a bargain when compared with the cost of several misdiagnosed and/or botched repair attempts at the same problem.


Current garage still having issues with it, apparently have got a dealer on the case and even they can’t sort it.

What is so hard about fixing a sensor along with power steering?

Electric power steering has a position sensor, force sensor, a reversible electric motor and electronic controls with software inside as well as software messages traded with other controls on the car like engine, body and ABS controllers. THAT is what’s so hard.

Many things to be screwed up. Key is letting the controls know exactly where center of the steering is and calibration of the force sensor. All that assumes the software isn’t buggy or the electronic controller didn’t just break a circuit board trace. Or the wiring didn’t get damaged by a rock or ham-fisted oil change artist! :scream:

It’s an Audi ! enough said. :anguished:

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If I had that problem, at this point I’d yield and take it to an Audi dealership to solve. A funky steering system is just too dangerous to fool around with.

I’ve had my car back, they held their hands up and said they didn’t know what else they could do, tried everything, next step would be replacing parts on a trial and error basis and the chance it wouldn’t work but would end up costing me a fortune.

So that’s 2 garages not helped me.

Is it worth hounding the guy who put a new ignition barrel in my car (this is when the lights came on but still had power steering) and getting him out to fix it or cut my losses and part ex?

They did say to keep an eye out on the engine and they notice smoke in the mornings when cold. Not noticed it myself but it has gone through a few spark plugs recently j