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Quattro King
Quattro King, Technician
Category: Audi
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Experience:  ASE Master Certified, 20+ yrs European experience
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Audi A6: I have an Audi A6 C5 4.2l. About a month ago I was

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I have an Audi A6 C5 4.2l. About a month ago I was driving it and began to hear this awful knocking noise as if say, the intake cams were attached at the chain but all caps were off, Imagine the whole cam spinning and jumping around inside... Thats what it SOUNDED like. I immediately pulled over and flat-bedded it home. Pulled codes and bank 2 valve cover. Inital inspection, the valves and cams looked fine. Further inspection revealed the intake cam had jumped one tooth off timing. How!? Not a clue as it was a major B to get it back a tooth and that was with the use of the tensioner tool compressing and giving slack. SO initial though was shoes were broke off causing too much slack hence the jumped tooth... Wrong Put it all back torqued the caps, new gaskets set timing, used cam locking bar.... and all on bank 2 mind you. as that is where the MAJORITY of the noise came and also the cam sprocket was slightly off for the cam bar to sit in its holes., I though I could hear it on bank 1 as well but not enough to pay any attention to that side. Once i put it all back and put a new battery in I fired it up, had slight knocking then the smoothest idle i have ever heard out of my baby :) then i go to back up and take her for a spin, Bam it comes back when revs drop. Pull back in park it and rev a bit again... Smooth idle then on the way back down the revs I get that same chatter.


ALSO If i am to let the engine Idle like normal no load, it starts again after about 5 minutes. out of the blue. Beautiful idle then crap. and the engine runs until i turn it off. Nor does it appear to even have an issue running. Its just that damn noise, no sputtering or rough idling.... I cant figure out why it is so intermittent outside of raising the revs which will prompt the sound as well. So First thought is..... tensioners, right!? Wrong/maybe


Tensioner shoes are on and attached. lifted the tensioner up and cleared a blockage on the oil supply hole coming out of the heads the blockage was up against that small screen on the tensioner. Put that all back and no difference. I then crack open bank 1 valve cover and instantly notice, not as great of a scene in there, not the cams though. All timing appears to be ok on bank 1. What i did notice is that it appears the oiling is not as good on bank 1. cams are a little more worn, not much and the tensioner shoes (on top) are getting grooves in it from the chain. I have not YET lifted up bank1 tensioner to clear the same oil blockage like the other one had. I am assuming it will be just as bad. And after I do that today I will be all out of ideas... I am so frustrated. Please let me know if you have any questions. I am sure i am leaving out something valuable to you. Here are the codes pulled with VAG-COM. Ive also been meaning to go into the measuring blocks to see if maybe, just maybe itl show the duty cycles on the tensioners to see if one is crapping out or both. Some relevant some not.



17530 - Oxygen (Lambda) Sensor Heating; B2 S2 P1122 - 35-00 - Open Circuit


17548 - Oxygen (Lambda) Sensor; B2 S2 P1140 - 35-10 - Internal Resistance too High - Intermittent


17522 - Oxygen (Lambda) Sensor; B1 S2 P1114 - 35-10 - Internal Resistance too High - Intermittent


16544 - Oxygen (Lambda) Sensor B2 S2 P0160 - 35-10 - No Activity - Intermittent


16524 - Oxygen (Lambda) Sensor B1 S2 P0140 - 35-10 - No Activity - Intermittent 16486 - Mass Air Flow Sensor (G70) P0102 - 35-10 - Signal too Low - Intermittent


17930 - Camshaft Adjustment; Bank 2 P1522 - 35-10 - Malfunction

– Intermittent Cam position MECH (1&3 5V REF SIGNAL


17748 - Camshaft Position Sensor (G40) BANK 1/ Engine Speed Sensor (G28) P1340 - 35-00 - Incor. Correlation  


18010 - Power Supply Terminal 30 P1602 - 35-10 - Voltage too Low - Intermittent


18032 - MIL Request Signal Active (Check TCM for errors too!) P1624 - 35-00 - Readiness: 0010 0001

Quattro King :

Thanks for using us to help.

Quattro King :

Ok - you have many issues related to 1 failure.

Quattro King :

1 failure being low oil pressure due to sludging I am going to bet with 99% confidence.

Quattro King :

It needs new tensioners and chains and the oil pan pulled and the screen cleaned or replaced. Replaced being the better option but not all are replacable.

Quattro King :

The chains are stretched and tensioners worn from lack of lubication and when the oil pressure drops it colapses the tensioner and jumps time.

Quattro King :

One bank does not oil as well on these engines as the other bank but it is not an issue unless oiling is restricted.

Customer: replied 3 years ago.

So Oiling is the issue or tensioners are the issue?


When i cleaned the screen or better yet removed the blockage, it was all balled under the screen and absolutely nothing was clogging or attached to the screen. the screen actually seemed to repel 100% of the buildup and when removed the screen was bright silver... weird


How would I address the Oiling issue?


And in reference to the timing, how big of a deal is it that I did not use the crank locking pin? I have equally gotten, " you have to have one" or " dont waste your money and just get a visual"?



Oil pressure is the issue and the tensions and chains have failed because of it. you must pull the pan and clean/replace the oil pump pick up screen and replace the timing chains and tensions. I would use a bar - the valves bend easy - close is not close enough on an Audi - honda sure.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

I definitely Am using the bar, just not the pin. I felt Bar + Cam caps + marks on cam + timing cover balancer mark (i know not AS dependable but sufficient 3rd or 4th cross reference point.)


Suggested solvent or cleaner for the pickup? From experience?

I remove and replace if possible but if I were to clean it I would use something like carb cleaner and scrub it well.


Ok - I would try and get a pin if possible or make one if your going into the heads and removing tensioners.

I hope everything was clear enough. Let me know if you are still confused or need further assistance.
Customer: replied 3 years ago.

So far so clear.


Buying oil tomorrow for a change/flush + pan gasket Then Ill be able to check the pickup tube tomorrow evening.


Tonight I pulled the bank 1 cam adjuster and there was a complete clog at the screen.


Put all back, idled better but still did have the chattering sound when revs dropped.


you can hear at first the engine adapt then idle then I rev it.. Listen for the chatter behind

That is because of the loss of oil pressure to the adjusters. Well good luck with the cleaning.

I hope all is working out for you. Please show me that you value my time as well by rating me and hitting accept or I do not get paid for my time. Thanks
Quattro King, Technician
Category: Audi
Satisfied Customers: 412
Experience: ASE Master Certified, 20+ yrs European experience
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Customer: replied 3 years ago.

Ok sorry about the delay getting back.


Got the car running monday. Here is what I did.


Checked the oil pickup tube and absolutely nothing... No clog or even buildup to speak of whatsoever. Looked brand new.


Last and only other thing I hadnt tried is not only to clean away the small screen on the underside of the driverside cam chain tensioner but take it apart and clean it as I had done on bank 1.


Now even though I took out the tensioner and pulled both pistons out of the sleeve I saw no visible debris... So the simple act of taking both of them out and cleaning them off thoroughly as well as spraying the crap out of the inside of the piston sleeve.


Put it all back, took a second for oil to make it back up to the tensioner and now have an absolutely beautiful sounding engine. Mainly thanks to re timing it but all in all it added up to the smoothest idle and throughout the full rpm range really. Better than its ever sounded, + the lack of mufflers :D


Thanks again for the Help you were great!

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