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ARRRRRRRRRRRGGGGGGGGHHHHHHHHHHHH 2000 A8 4.2 non start after refitting gearbox!!!!!!

7 posts in this topic

Gearbox failed in my old mans A8 4.2 so we pulled the box out put a second hand one in all connected up, went to try after charging the flat battery for a few hours i have all lights bells and whistles but no cranking no click from starter no nothing:confused:.

I can see the earth for the starting circuit is connected well from distributor block on o/s chassis rail.

Got 12v across the posative for the alternator and i know i connected the two wires on the starter only prob being the poor design of the engine setup meaning that you can't even see the starter connections without removing the entire front subframe and the o/s engine mount.

On original attempt at start up the vehicle was flashing the immobilizer light so i left the ignition on for 30 secs and this has remedied itself.

I have the epc light on and had three engine codes stored but this shouldn't prevent the thing turning over.

Air mass meter disconnected to temporarily stop eratic idle cause by dead meter.

The vehicle battery was very flat when charged up but even using battery, jump pack and my starter charger, can't get a click. I think i have a problem with the feed, relay or solenoid signal.

Any other ideas greatly appreciated thanks

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Update - i bit the bullet dropped the sub frame and removed the engine mount and as i thought there was no error in starter fitting and there is continuity between feed on chassis leg and starter. earth mount seems good aswell.

Then decided to not believe the dash display which was saying park. Spun the wheels to discover that all 4 wheels can be spun freely. Surely in park diffs should be locked and vehicle immobilised but is this only when wheels are in contact with the floor.AT the mo the car is suspended off my 2 poster with the engine box and subframe all on seperate supports so i can't put it on the floor to check.

Also if triptronic is selected the dash display does not change from D with ignition on.

Is there somewhere where a list of measuring blocks can be found as without that a vw diagnostic tools is pretty useless. On a customers micra i could check the Park neutral switch positions in live data but with the vag systems i only have an option of measuring blocks and no clue what is what tried ross tech website with no real success.

I am now stumped as to what to do can't find a suitable wiring diagram to tell which is the correct relay to test. I checked the feed to one and noticed it was switching with the ignition but unsure if this is the starter relay?

Rang audi for info as per usual useless all they could tell me is there are six relays available for my car but the have no way of telling what is what! and i thought the germans were usually so efficient!

Does anyone know where i can a workshop manual/ wiring diagrams for this autodata, tolerance and vivid workshop data programs are as much use as a chocolate tea pot and i'm getting nowhere fast

Also tried a brand new transit battery to see if a good battery made a difference.

Just got the apprentice to climb up into the car so i could test feed to starter and main power cable has 12v constant and solenoid wire 0v igntition off 12v igntion turned to crank position so relay is working but the engine doesn't turn. Gonna whip the starter out again and bench test. I know the starter worked when i crawled the vehicle into the workshop it started lovely.

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It's not electrical. The clue is in the selector lever position. If your in park and you can spin the wheels then the tranny is probably in reverse.

When you reconnected the selector cable to the box there was a bracket to hold the outer cable; behind a heat shield just above the passenger side cat. There are 2 bolts there and the plate that pinches the outer cable has 2 elongated holes in it to allow it to be adjusted. Slacken those bolts and ensure the selector lever in the car is all the way forward in park. Using a long rod, ensure the selector cam on the side of the transmission is all the way forward; push the bracket forward and do up the bolts.

Now try to start. If it starts. Carefully select reverse and see if it will reverse. If it doesn't reverse, then adjust the plate a bit toward the rear. Try to start, if it starts, try reverse. Happend to me! :o

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Solved that problem was down to a school boy error on my part the linkages etc were all good but the soleniod feed for the starter was connected to the wrong terminal!

Just to make life fun audi put two connectors on the starter for the solenoid control and i chose the one in view when putting back together when it should be the one down the back of the starter solenoid out of view.(nice to see they make things obvious and easy eh!)

New problem is that the car starts drives selects all gears would drive lovely but the front wheels are toeing out massively with the wheel centred i reckon "don't have tracking equipment" 20 degrees toe out on each wheel car won't go straight and skips and skids like a nobodies business when trying to corner.

My imediate thought was the aftermarket upper suspension arms i fitted but they would more likely affect camber of the wheels and caster if not located properly.

So i decided it must be a subframe allignment problem but the subframe is sitting pretty much exactly where it was when i removed the first time (the marks i made on the subframe line up nicely.

So i loosened everything up and tugged the subframe around to try and change toe out to no avail.

I haven't moved the track rods at all, so should still be in the exact setup from when the car limped into the garage.

Can anyone think of anything else that would cause this and does anyone know what audi use to allign the subframe after a gearbox change.

I know camber can be adjusted by moving the subframe but the camber doesn't look to bad. The subframe must be to far forward so the track rod arms from the rack are not straight when the wheel is. Pulling the geometry out and toeing the wheels out massively here are some pics to show wheel position:

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all the diagrams are at vagcat


but you will need to register to use (free)

There is a seperate harness for the selector lever for example


and you can look at relays along with guidance on what each does -


You can get the full list of measuring blocks at

Hope this helps

thanks for that info mate thats incredibly helpful. Thanks to everyone for the input. James

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