Audi Oil Consumption

oil
audi
a5

#1

I bought a new Audi A5 with a 2.0 liter turbo engine in August 2010. From the very beginning this car has been using in excess of a quart of oil every 850 miles. I have done some research and it appears that this happens to a small minority of their engines. Audi seems alternatively unwilling or unable to solve the problem. They have performed 3 extensive repairs replacing 2 different engine seals-one of them twice. The consumption has now actually worsened to about a quart every 800 miles. Now they are starting to tell me that my consumption is really not all that far from Audi’s “minimal acceptable limit of a quart every 1,000 miles”. Why does the oil consumption vary so widely in their new engines? Why can’t they fix the problems? Why do they act like we are unreasonable to expect the same consumption of all the lucky A5 drivers?


#2

What part of “minimal acceptable limit” don’t they understand? While Audis are know oil users, this is clearly excessive, even by their own standards. Assuming you’ve contacted Audi USA it’s time to start going after lemon law status, a lawyer may be needed.


#3

I agree that this level of oil consumption is not acceptable, but, based on at least 3 prior posts over the past couple of years, it is apparently not unusual for new or new-ish Audis to consume as much as 1 qt every 600 miles. And, those same unhappy Audi owners also reported that neither their dealer nor Audi on the corporate level seemed to share their concerns.

Unfortunately, I don’t think that your experience is an isolated one, and except for a Lemon Law claim, I don’t know what else to suggest. Start educating yourself about the terms of the Lemon Law in your state!


#4

My answer is that Audi has not come to a internal agreement on how to handle this OR the internal agreement is to baffel and stall and give people the run around. It has been some years since I dealt with Audi and I must conclude there is something about these cars that people really like as they do keep on buying them. I ask, other than the oil problem do you like your car?


#5

My cousin has a 2006 A4 that drinks the oil like crazy. The tail pipes are very oily and black soot. The car has very low mileage and they took it back and they tested it and said it was fine. They will never buy another. I went through the same thing with VW. They dont care. Good luck fighting that.


#6

My Opinion: Lemon, Either Just Your Car Or Who Knows How Many Units Are Afflicted ?

Now they are starting to tell me that my consumption is really not all that far from Audi’s “minimal acceptable limit of a quart every 1,000 miles”.

Key words: . . . “minimal acceptable limit of a quart every 1,000 miles” . . .

The thing is that 1,000 miles per quart is a stretch. Some manufacturers use 2,000. I think GM is 2,000. Then there’s the fact that your car is getting worse.

I think they owe you a whole new car so that you don’t suffer any more inconvenience while they play games trying to sort this out.

Suggest that they take the take this car off your hands to have a vehicle they can study and find out what’s going wrong with Audi quality control before it leads to a poorer image and lost sales.

You’ve been through enough.

CSA


#7

The oil issue and more importantly the dealer and corporate reactions have been disappointing to appalling. Ironically, other than that I like the car a lot.It handles very well and is fun to drive.I’m 6’3" and there is plenty of head and leg room.Comfortable and I think the car is very attractive.The design of the controls for the electronics could be a lot better in my opinion but not a big issue and certainly one I knew about prior to purchase. If it weren’t for the poor response to my oil issue I’d be an Audi fan boy. At present I want out ASAP and barring some earth changing event would not buy one again.


#8

What you should do is take your car to a private mechanic, and have an engine compression and leakdown test performed. This will give you an idea of how the engine is doing in those stats, and see if the car is within or out of spec in that regards.

As for oil burning, there are two ways to burn oil:

  • Oil control rings are shot, and allowing oil to be burned in the combustion chamber.
  • Oil is being turned into mist, and consumed by the engine via the PCV system.

The first one is harder - build the engine better.
The second one is easier for you to do - install a catch can to see if this is the cause of the oil consumption, or disconnect the PCV system so that the oil mist won’t be consumed by the engine.

Your engine has several strikes against it.

First off, it is a Direct Fuel Injection engine.
On top of that, it has a turbo installed on it.

The combination of these two items leads to raw fuel being forced past the piston rings, which then contaminates the engine oil, which lowers the Flash Point of the engine oil. When the engine oil gets hot, the oil turns into mist A LOT EASIER than fresh clean oil does, and gets sucked into the PCV system, and burned when it gets sucked into the combustion chamber, and further fouls up the compression and oil control rings with carbon.

The biggest cause of the poor performance of these engines is owners who beat on the car when its cold, in the very early stages of the engine breaking in. With a turbo DFI engine, you should never drive the car under boost when it is cold, and the various metals haven’t yet expanded to their proper sizes. This leads to excess wear in the engine, that never can be restores without a rebuild.

What Audi/VW should have done, was install a variable redline in the car when the engine is cold, like what Mazda has done with the RX8. When the engine is first started up, the RX8 has two lights that bring the red line of the car down from 9k rpms to 5500 rpms, and when slightly warmed up, the first light goes out, allowing you to re the car to 7500 rpms. This prevents the owners of the RX8 from abusing their cars when cold, causing increased wear of the engine, leading to increased engine repairs under warranty.

The 5500 rpm restriction goes out very quickly, too. Usually about 5 to 10 blocks, depending on temperature. The second one turns off after about 2 miles of driving, or when the engine thermostat gets opened by coolant temperature.

I believe that if Audi did the same, there would be less problems.

BC.


#9

Unless they have performed a compression and leakdown test at a minimum then they’ve really done nothing to diagnose the problem at all. Do you know if this has been done?

You state that you bought it new. Does this mean brand new as in 4 or 5 miles on it or did it have a 100 on it, etc?


#10

I also recommend seeing an independent garage for an engine/turbo diagnostic. It is possible that the problem lies in the turbo and not in the engine. A good mechanic can get to the bottom of this for a couple of hours of diagnostic time.


#11

"Your engine has several strikes against it.

First off, it is a Direct Fuel Injection engine.
On top of that, it has a turbo installed on it.

The combination of these two items leads to raw fuel being forced past the piston rings, which then contaminates the engine oil, which lowers the Flash Point of the engine oil. When the engine oil gets hot, the oil turns into mist A LOT EASIER than fresh clean oil does, and gets sucked into the PCV system, and burned when it gets sucked into the combustion chamber, and further fouls up the compression and oil control rings with carbon. "

I’m not sure where you get this information about raw fuel leaking past the rings to dilute the oil. That is not a realistic drawback to direct injection engines unless, of course, an injector fails a starts constantly spraying fuel into the cylinder (which is also a problem with multi-point injection). It would be probably good to look at these websites to see some more information on direct injection systems:

About.com


canadiandriver.com
http://www.autos.ca/auto-tech/auto-tech-direct-fuel-injection-vs-port-fuel-injection

BTW, Diesel engines have used direct injection for over a decade without problems.


#12

Thanks to all of the above for your thoughtful input. In response to above questions, the car did have a little over 200 miles on it when purchased from the dealership. I guess that raises the question of how people were driving it previously. By nature, the way I drive would conform to a proper break in. They have not performed a compression or leak down test. They have replaced 3 leaking seals. Now we are doing another oil consumption test which the car is failing rapidly. My guess is I’ll have a low oil warning at about 600 miles. From what I can piece together from all the different service people I talk to, when it fails this time they are going to replace the rings. From other’s stories I’ve read on a variety of forums this usually leads to a dramatic improvement and is really the only thing that helps. When they do this, it will be their 4th attempt to fix the problem and another several days in the shop which will absolutely define the car as a lemon if they are not successful. At that point I will take advantage of that statute. If they truly fix the issue I’ll likely keep the car but will not buy another from a company that is run this way. I have several concerns.

1)If this truly is an expected issue on these types of engines why is it not mentioned prior to purchase. It is certainly unusual compared to any other engine I or any of my friends have owned and is worth discussing with a potential buyer.

2)Why the huge variance? It seems that most owners have much better luck-a quart every 3-4,000 miles or better. A few are even worse off than I-new engine using a quart every 600 miles! Why does Audi think it is fair to sell cars at the same price that vary so widely in consumption?

3)Why don’t the sales and service managers return my phone calls or emails?

4)How is it that a new engine came with two leaky seals and also need a ring job on arrival?

5)Why would they start to hedge on their own standard by saying a quart every 800 miles “is really not all that far off of our minimal acceptable standard of a quart every 1,000 miles”?

I have not taken it to an independent mechanic because I don’t want to to spend money on that. Audi is either fixing this issue under warranty or the car comes back as a lemon.


#13

Only thing I can say is about those first 200 miles. The majority of those would have been test drives, and those would have been very hard miles.

It’s up to the salesmen/women to take care of the cars under their control, or never sell a test driven car - which is unrealistic. We all want to drive the car we’re thinking about buying. Not a copy of it, but the car itself.

Then, there are those that go into a dealer with the express intention of only driving a new car like snot, and seeing how quick it is, or thrashing it for 20 miles.

You’ll have to wait and see what this latest attempt at a repair furnishes.


#14

1)If this truly is an expected issue on these types of engines why is it not mentioned prior to purchase. It is certainly unusual compared to any other engine I or any of my friends have owned and is worth discussing with a potential buyer.

It is not expected with this engine regardless of what some others on this forums say. Yes, you can expect some oil consumption, but not anything near what you are seeing. I suggest you move over to a forum that like VWVortex and get help from other Audi owners who have much more experience with this brand than many on this board. Yes, there could be defective rings, but I bet it has more to do with the car being abused for the first 200 miles.

2)Why the huge variance? It seems that most owners have much better luck-a quart every 3-4,000 miles or better. A few are even worse off than I-new engine using a quart every 600 miles! Why does Audi think it is fair to sell cars at the same price that vary so widely in consumption?

This is a high performance 2.0 liter engine. If it isn’t broken in properly, you will not be happy with things in the long term. If you do break it in correctly, it is a wonderful engine.

3)Why don’t the sales and service managers return my phone calls or emails?

They’re trying to get rid of you.

4)How is it that a new engine came with two leaky seals and also need a ring job on arrival?

I bet it didn’t have leaky seals, that was just a way to try and get you off their back. The ring job is the solution.

5)Why would they start to hedge on their own standard by saying a quart every 800 miles “is really not all that far off of our minimal acceptable standard of a quart every 1,000 miles”?

You need to call their bluff on this one. A standard is a standard. Your car clearly does not pass.


#15

A car with 200 miles on it means it was a dealer demo. Not only would customers have a hand in test driving one of these but some hard driving could also be encouraged by a salesman along for the ride. “Nail it. Feel that power? Like it, huh?” and that kind of thing.

Demos are generally issued to manager types and some managers/salesmen have the metabolism of hummingbirds. The accelerator pedal has only 2 positions; off and fully on. All of that can affect the engine break-in.

Just curious, but do you have documention (copies of repair orders, etc) laying your complaints out? They state they repaired several oil leaks. This means warranty coverage and you should have a copy of the repair order stating what was leaking, what was done to repair it, and there should be parts charged out. The old parts must be retained and tagged for inspection by the regional rep who makes a visit now and then to look things over. If none of this exists then there’s the possibility you have been given a placebo.

It could be you’re on the way to a Lemon issue and you MUST have documentation for everything. Even a private notebook laying out any personal contact, dates and times, and their failure to contact you again all needs to be in there. The more ammo the better.

I would get very antsy about an oil use complaint when a few simple things are not done. One is a basic visual inspection for leaks and the other is a generic compression test.
If a compression test is performed the results should ALWAYS be noted on the repair order. There is no excuse for not doing a compresssion test or providing results of that test.


#16

Then explain to me why just about every Gasoline Direct Injection engine has high levels of fuel contamination from oil analysis results, no matter the mileage on the car over the life of an oil change?

VW/Audi rates being the worst of them all, with the 2.0 Turbo engine, at that.

The fuel only has access to the engine oil from the combustion chamber.
The DFI can and does inject gasoline at several different stages of the piston travel.

When the engine is cold, the amount of fuel sprayed is considerably richer, which is washing the oil on the cylinder walls right off. Hence the fuel contamination.

This also leads to extra wear on the cylinder walls and the rings.
This leads to increased blow by of the rings, and increased fuel contamination of the oil, which leads to increased oil consumption.

Which part of all of this don’t you understand?

Then, you add in a turbocharger, and boost pressure on a cold engine, and this just makes everything happen at a much faster rate, and even richer fuel to air ratios.

Hence, we get a post about a very young Audi having huge oil consumption issues.

Nothing wrong with my understanding of the technology, or engine theory, OR of what actually happens to these engines.

BC.


#17

Well finally after 9 months of persistence->20 visits to the dealership, lots of emails and phone discussions with Audi USA-they finally installed a new engine. Picked up the car yesterday and so far so good! (See my previous post above.)

For anyone with a new engine like this that is using substantially more than a quart per 1,000 miles, I recommend immediately contacting both the dealership and Audi USA. There is a lot of inertia to overcome-my guess is push back from Audi in Germany-the mechanics here are constantly calling the engineers there and must get permission to do things. Anyhow be persistent, document your communications and keep good records of oil consumption/replacement,days car is in the shop etc. Eventually this will pay off.


#18

Keep an eye on things but at this point I would not necessarily blame Audi and the car as being the cause of the original problem.

You state it had 200 miles on it when purchased. The initial break-in period is very crucial to engine longevity and with 200 miles this means it was a dealer demonstrator.
Dealer demos are often flogged into the pavement; either by a potential buyer (FEEL THAT POWER says the salesman!) or by a salesman or manager type with a hummingbird metabolism. That type of metabolism is not a rare thing with salesmen.

In a nutshell, the problem was not caused by the car but by the people behind the wheel.


#19

Grats on getting a new motor! Break it in right, and take care of it. :slight_smile: