My Audi has had been a bad cold starter for about 2.5 years at 120,000 approx. It cranks but does not fire up. It is intermittent and random, then sometimes it starts spot on !

April 2017 - I had the tandem fuel pump and tank sender unit replaced as advised. All coolant hoses were Replaced due to contaminated due the leakage. Then the tandem pump failed again in November a few months later and was replaced under warranty.

April 2018 - Bad cold starting / juddering was still happening, the dealership did tests and advised that it was a injector problem. They also replaced all the injectors and associated parts, plus the oil cooler and turbo booster hose.

January 2019 - However, the problem still was still there. Back into the dealership it went, only to be told that the head was leaking and it needed replacing ! I did not see any of the usual evidence of the head failure.

During the course of 2019 and early 2020 there were several visits to the dealership for this problem. They tried a new starter motor, but that wasn’t the problem, and it was returned. The only thing that came up on the diagnostics was the engine speed sensor, but as it was not definitive enough I did not replace it, as I felt it was becoming a bit of a guessing game. Being told the head was porous kept coming up. Again not definitive enough at £7-8k that was not going to happen !

2020 - Around January / February I have another diagnostics done, but did not really reveal much other than the ignition key halo might be the problem, but again not totally convinced so I did not do that.

Early March I had it booked in another garage following another starting issue. They determined and showed me that the starter motor connection had been damaged by over tightening, possibly when I had the gearbox and clutch done in late 2018. This was causing a drain on the battery especially after 5-6 cranks. So starter motor and battery was replaced. Leak tests on the fuel system tested, no leaks found. So next the timing was in line for checking. As the cam belt was due for replacement I had replaced at that time. No issues with timing found. Then disaster struck, the tension stud failed and The belt slipped.

The engine incurred a hole in the block. Replacement remanufactured engine fitted. Injector harness replaced, along with engine speed sensor and new turbo.

Unfortunately the problem is still there. Again leak tests and fuel pumps tests carried out, all good. Replaced tandem pump made by Bosch, showing better pressure. Test driven and runs lovely, smoother pickup. Just waiting to find out if the starting issue has gone away. The next course of action possibly the fuel pump (with regulator)that feed the tandem pump or the ECU.

I nearly forgot. Sometimes when driving these days there is very slight hesitancy felt, but pretty rarely and only the odd occasion.

Mileage now 150,000 miles.

HELP ... Have anything been missed ? This is getting boring, frustrating and expensive !

  • IMO don't take a 2008 car to a main agent, because it may be the worst they see all day and might disrespect it. And they tend to treat customers as marks (there are exceptions) and recommend changing anything they can keep a straight face about. That isn't hard because they have a "firewall" front desk to distance the customer from the techs. Example: if the engine is cranking well but does not fire, it is unlikely to need a new battery, solenoid, starter motor or alternator. I would scout out a good garage by word-of-mouth and by talking to them. If you can't get past reception try another. Commented Jul 4, 2020 at 19:22
  • Thanks for that. I am now with a very good independent garage, and it’s still trying.
    – Diana
    Commented Jul 5, 2020 at 0:19
  • By the way ... Welcome to Motor Vehicle Maintenance & Repair! :o) Commented Jul 5, 2020 at 5:35


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