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Old 03-25-2014, 08:55 AM   #1
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Default ECM issue - help!

Hi guys,

New to the forumn. I own a 2004 Audi A4 1.8T. Last week, I went to drive to work, turned it on, put it in drive, and it stalled out. Everytime I put it in gear it died. I had to get it towed to the Audi dealer. Now they are telling me, that after extensive trial and error, the ECM needs to be replaced and are quoting me $2800 with parts and labour!

Is this right? Is there any way to do this myself? Brutal!
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Old 03-25-2014, 09:29 AM   #2
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It's possible, but if it were me, I would get a second opinion from an independent Audi shop.
02 sport quattro with 205K; killed by a 4x4). Now an 03 1.8t sport quattro with 101K
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Old 03-25-2014, 09:33 AM   #3
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I should mention this is Canadian dollars if that helps at all. What I dont understand, is that on eBay etc., they have ECM/ECUs for $100. Where is the remaining $2700 coming from?
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Old 03-25-2014, 09:59 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by wongt1362 View Post
I should mention this is Canadian dollars if that helps at all. What I dont understand, is that on eBay etc., they have ECM/ECUs for $100. Where is the remaining $2700 coming from?
Just to clarify, is it the gearbox ecu they are quoting you for? If so ask them what faults were stored in the ecu memory. The cvt gearbox ecu is housed inside the gearbox rear casing. From a dealer it is about 1200 dollars (I'm in the uk-600). They charge approx 4hrs worth of labour and for 5 litres of oil. The gearbox support has to be removed and the casing taken off to replace it.
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Old 03-25-2014, 02:09 PM   #5
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Immobilizer III is the problem with used ECU. You could use a used ECU only if you have the pin code from the instrument cluster from the car it came from. Which is usually impossible unless u buy the cluster and ECU from the same donor car, you could install them both and it would work. Or temprarily install the donor cluster and ecu, pull the pin from the cluster, reinstall your cluster and use the VDCS instructions to make it work. Dealer MIGHT be able to force a used ECU to work with your cluster but im not sure.

Either way for a now ten year+ old car the immo stuff is total BS and easily can make one of these old cars junk. They need to come up with software to delete the immo stuff for older cars its just not fair they make it so you have to take it to them.
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Old 03-27-2014, 10:50 PM   #6
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7 years ago, I had a dealer pair a USED ECU which I supplied them with to my 2000 A8. My original ECU had a persistent internal error measuring atmospheric pressure after the underhood electric box flooded.

The important piece is...if the old ECU isn't dead, just defective, then it is pretty easy. They need to read the secret 4 digit PIN from the original ECU, then install the new used ECU which you will supply them with.

They need to tell the used ECU to dump the VIN information it has from the donor car and pick up the VIN information for your car from the Instrument cluster/Immobilizer. The way they do this is first input the secret 4 digit PIN of the USED cluster to allow access to adaptation. They then change teh PIN of the USED ECM to the PIN of your original ECM. The Instrument Cluster/Immobilizer then sees that this donor ECM now has the same PIN as the original ECM, and sends over your vehicles VIN info to be copied onto the donor ECM. At this point your used donor ECM is now an exact clone of your original. Done.

It should take a decent tech about 1 hour.

You can buy a replacement used Engine Computer for a 2004 1.8t in Canada here:

http://car-part.com/ Search "Computer Box Engine" from the dropdown menu and for the princely sum of $50 Canadian (what's that in real money btw)it can be yours from Mikes Auto Parts in Stoney Creek.

If the car was in your driveway and you were the handy sort, I'd also tell you to buy a Super VAG K+CAN from ecutools.com in China for $80 and pull all the secret PIN numbers yourself. http://www.ecutool.com/Super-VAG-KCAN_1025.html

This assumes of course you already have VAG COM from Ross Tech - or some kind soul nearby will help you. I can check both boxes and have paired ECU's, Clusters and Immobilizer transponder Keys with no trouble at all.

$2800?? That's freaking insane. Theya are charging you for a NEW from AUDI ECU. You don't need a NEW one. A USED one will work just fine.

Here is a video from Ross Tech showing the pairing process. ECM swap starts halfway through the video:

"Oh, bother", said Pooh as he chambered another round.

Last edited by BrianC72gt; 03-27-2014 at 11:37 PM.
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Old 03-27-2014, 10:50 PM
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