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Huge loss in power, can't get past 2500RPM

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Old 02-18-2014, 02:06 PM   #1
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Default Huge loss in power, can't get past 2500RPM

Hi guys. I'm new to these forums and stuff and I'm foreign so pardon in advance if I misspell something.

I have an Audi A6 C5 (2002), 3.0L V6 30V Quattro with 218HP (160KW) and I'm having a HUGE loss in power in the last few days.

The car starts fine, it runs great in idle, everything's OK untill I floor the pedal and it just gives me EPC fault on the dashboard and another fault which is, I do believe, for the ESP. I added the attachment of the ESP fault (note it isn't the original photo of my dashboard). So, when I floor the pedal, it gives me the faults and I just can't get above 2500 RPM. It just stays there, no matter how much I floor the pedal. It happens in every gear, doesn't matter if the enigne is cold or warm. Everytime I floor the pedal it gives me the faults and it just won't get past 2500 RPM. So I have to shift it before 2500RPM and I'm driving like a grandpa.

Naturally, I didn't want to **** around the car so I went to see a few mechanics and all of them gave me DIFFERENT reasons for the problem: Lambda Sonda, ESP sensor, fuel pump...

The problem is, I'm not so good with money at the moment so I'm not willing to just take a guess and pay one mechanic to ''give it a try'' with one solution. So, ANY ideas on what do you think it is would be much appreciated. Especially if you had the same problem as me.
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Old 02-18-2014, 04:35 PM   #2
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Default Lets understand EPC from the manual

"EPC" is an abbreviation for Electronic Power Control and refers to the electronic throttle control system.
When the ignition is switched on, the engine control module checks all the components of importance to the electronic throttle system.
After switching on the ignition the engine control module switches on the EPC warning lamp.
The EPC lamp goes out shortly after starting the engine if, on the one hand, the engine control module does not detect any malfunctions in the EPC system, and, if activation of the lamp by the engine control module is OK.
If a malfunction is detected in the electronic throttle system while the engine is running, the engine control module switches on the EPC warning lamp. (These DTCs are listed in the DTC table). At the same time, an entry is made in the engine control module DTC memory.

So at this point you have been told just about everything but the real source of the problem, you really need to see what the DTC's are "Error Codes" with vagcom to begin proper diagnosis.
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Old 02-18-2014, 04:41 PM   #3
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Let me make my point clearer.

Get vagcom or find a mechanic with vagcom who knows how to use it.

Good Luck!
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Old 02-18-2014, 05:40 PM   #4
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The EPC does come on when I start the ignition and it goes off when I start the engine. And I'm having no faults, car works fine, but whenever I give it some gas/floor the pedal it instantly turns on the faults and I can't get above 2500RPM. And it resets after I turn the engine off but the next time I floor the pedal it's all the same.

All of the mechanics I went to have some type of diagnostic program, and all of them told me different types of faults in my car. Seems to me that the mechanics in my town just aren't up to the job and I'm afraid I'll have to go to the official Audi dealership and I'm sure they'll leave me skinned with their prices but it looks like I don't have a choice here.

Do you think there is a slight chance of the problem being in the throttle body? I'll try cleaning it tomorrow. Will keep you posted.
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Old 02-18-2014, 05:46 PM   #5
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A VW service center use's the same diagnostic protocol be it a dealer or an independent.

Find your problem before you make more of one.
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Old 02-19-2014, 03:58 AM   #6
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Codes would be very, very helpful. Without them, I am just making complete, blind, wild guesses.

Some things to check: Check your Mass Air Flow sensor - is it unplugged? Is it somehow disconnected?

Check for boost leaks. Are all the pipes connected and clamped down?

Any check engine light? Solid or flashing?

The diagnostics tool would be very helpful. VW/Audi will probably charge $80-100 just to read the codes. You can buy a Vag-Com for about $300 and be done relying on them for diagnostics...
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Old 02-19-2014, 04:16 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jseklund View Post
Codes would be very, very helpful. Without them, I am just making complete, blind, wild guesses.

Some things to check: Check your Mass Air Flow sensor - is it unplugged? Is it somehow disconnected?

Check for boost leaks. Are all the pipes connected and clamped down?

Any check engine light? Solid or flashing?

The diagnostics tool would be very helpful. VW/Audi will probably charge $80-100 just to read the codes. You can buy a Vag-Com for about $300 and be done relying on them for diagnostics...
I agree with your advise but the 3.0 don't sport turbos.
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Old 02-19-2014, 05:56 AM   #8
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Thanks for the tips guys but I don't have a turbo on my Audi and I'll check to see the MAF sensor if it's unplugged or damaged. I'll give that a try and also try cleaning the throttle body.

Right now my best guess is that my ESP sensor is dead/damaged. Will give those 3 options a try and if all fails I'll just have to trust the mechanics in my town.

Thanks for your help guys, I know that without the codes we're all making blind guesses but I don't have the diagnostic tool and I thought maybe some of you had similar problems with your Audis. Thanks for the help.

Will keep you updated as soon as I fix it.
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Old 02-19-2014, 10:59 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BojanA6 View Post
Thanks for the tips guys but I don't have a turbo on my Audi and I'll check to see the MAF sensor if it's unplugged or damaged. I'll give that a try and also try cleaning the throttle body.

Right now my best guess is that my ESP sensor is dead/damaged. Will give those 3 options a try and if all fails I'll just have to trust the mechanics in my town.

Thanks for your help guys, I know that without the codes we're all making blind guesses but I don't have the diagnostic tool and I thought maybe some of you had similar problems with your Audis. Thanks for the help.

Will keep you updated as soon as I fix it.
There is no one main ESP sensor, ESP is "Electronic Stability Program" that reacts to the inputs from all wheel sensors, engine speed and steering angle to act as a higher level traction traction control independently pecking at one or more wheels to achieve traction using EDL "electronic differential locking" and controlling engine speed to correct driving control.

So just remember ABS, EDL and ESP all are similar functions from the ABS controller.

If you had a bad wheel sensor, abs module fault or relative problems you would see a brake/abs warning light in the dash cluster.

It is very logical that the ESP light is on because of the EPC problem you have therefore not allowing ESP to function, one fault can lead to others right down the line.

Please take my advice and have the car properly diagnosed with the right tools, we could only speculate what is going on without DTC codes so again get to the bottom of the EPC problem first or post the codes so we something to go on.
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Old 02-19-2014, 11:56 AM   #10
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I'm not sure it's called ESP sensor but I'm talking about this thing (attachment).

I'm pretty sure it has something to do with ESP, there's a problem with it and it won't let my engine run past 2500 RPM. Again, we're all just guessing here.

As soon as I fix the problem, and I sure hope it will be soon, I will let you know what was causing the problem.

Thanks for your time man.
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Old 02-19-2014, 01:10 PM   #11
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That is a yaw sensor.
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Old 02-19-2014, 01:11 PM   #12
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Also…have you done anything recently with the steering wheel, taken it off, or messed with the clockspring?
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Old 02-19-2014, 02:06 PM   #13
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Doh, a stupid mistake. Thanks for pointing that out!
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Old 02-19-2014, 02:42 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BojanA6 View Post
I'm not sure it's called ESP sensor but I'm talking about this thing (attachment).

I'm pretty sure it has something to do with ESP, there's a problem with it and it won't let my engine run past 2500 RPM. Again, we're all just guessing here.

As soon as I fix the problem, and I sure hope it will be soon, I will let you know what was causing the problem.

Thanks for your time man.
Yes this is one part or input sensor for the ESP/ABS system.

Now you have to ask yourself a question:
Is the EPC system causing a problem with the ESP not functioning?
OR
Is the ESP system causing a problem with the EPC?

IF you can throw money/parts at a problem and not be sure then your throwing dice.

Paying money to find out what problem you have is no gamble.
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Old 02-19-2014, 03:02 PM   #15
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I think I'm gonna go with the ESP causing the trouble because, yesterday, when I had no faults on the dashboard, I pressed the ESP button (the button for turning it on/off) and I got the ESP fault on the dashboard, and when I pressed it again it disappeared. So I'm pretty sure it's the ESP messing up my car. And I hated the damn thing ever since the start of it. Let ME drive my car. I don't want no computer doing the work for me. If I wanted that I'd just use the bus to get where I'm going.

As soon as I fix this problem, IF it's the ESP fault, I'm going to try to rip the thing of my car - not have the thing on the Audi at all. If that's possible?

And just a quick thought - jcman - you keep saying eCp, but I'm getting ePc fault on the dashboard. Is it just a typing mistake or is it entire different thing?

@SloopJohnB@mac.com

No, I haven't been messing around the steering wheel lately. Or messing around anything for that matter. It just started all of a sudden.

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Old 02-19-2014, 03:52 PM   #16
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I meant EPC "electronic power control" not ECP that I edit corrected all of my threads, sorry for that confusion.

My advise and comments still stand regarding the order of events that are occurring first causing the other.

Not trying to sound bad here, did you know that when the ESP button is pressed you will see the yellow ESP light indicating it's off, so if you leave it on "no ESP light" does the EPC light come on?
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Old 02-19-2014, 04:02 PM   #17
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But that same ''yellow light'' (I added an attachment in my first post, you can see how that yellow light looks) comes on when I floor the pedal and that's when it blocks me from going over 2500 RPM, the yellow light (ESP) AND the EPC light. They come on at the exact same time. That's why i assume it's the ESP problem that's messing things up.

We can talk here for an eternity until I replace that ''ESP sensor'' or, if that fails, go to see a proper diagnostic at the mechanics.

I just thought and hoped some of you had the same exact problem as me so I could just replace the broken part, without having to pay the mechanics and their diagnosis.

I will fix the problem soon and will let you guys know what was the actual problem.
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Old 02-19-2014, 04:31 PM   #18
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Ok but if you don't turn the ESP off does both ESP & EPC lights come on?

Here is what I see when I hit the ESP button.
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Old 02-20-2014, 05:27 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SloopJohnB@mac.com View Post
AFAIK there is no EPC light…it's the ESP light, the first one that the OP showed lit, the yellow light with the triangle in it. It basically indicates traction control of one or another types…an individual brake is being pulsed due to lack of traction or being applied as a function of the electronic stability program thinking you want the car to turn/yaw based on the steering angle sensor saying one thing and the yaw sensor saying it ain't happening, or it's happening too fast (over steer), or there's too much slippage and braking the slipping wheels ain't working and therefore the only thing to do is cut power or various or all wheels are slipping in an acceleration situation. AFIK in all these cases the ESP 'light' lights.

Further, for cars without ESP, specifically my 4K4.2A6, that light illuminates when the ABS works on braking or acceleration OR the system (traction control in my case) cuts power.
The OP has the same ABS/EDL/ESP "Advanced Traction Control" system I do, so as with any traction control system the module takes over the throttle control also to limit power and slip based on the movement of the car compared to the wheel sensors.

I can say that for most of my driving the ESP is left on and when the system is working the ESP light will flash until the car is in the sweet spot of being straight and hooked-up.

EPC as described by the manual is the by the wire throttle control and the only time it's illuminated should be before a engine start afterwards it should be off unless there is a problem.
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Old 02-20-2014, 07:37 AM   #20
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I may have a similar but less severe version of this. I am keying into your repeated statement of "flooring it". This is when you cannot get the engine to go above 2500 RPMs. I also have the issue that if I floor it when entering the highway, thus with the steering wheel slightly turned, the ESP activates and the car is automatically slowed, thus overriding my "flooring it". It also happens even when I just "floor it" on the highway with minimal if any angle on the steering wheel.

If I just let off the gas a bit, all goes away and I get control of acceleration once again. I interpret this as an overly sensitive sensor somewhere within the traction control system. Meaning that it thinks I am losing control and the traction control system takes the initiative to slow me down. It activates the brakes and it also activates the engine control by lessening the acceleration. At the time the system initiates I am not losing traction, but it thinks I am or maybe that I am about to.

I previously posted on this forum asking if there was an adjustment that could be made to desensitize this program. I was told no. My resolution is to not "floor it" when I am blending into traffic, or when I want to pass someone. As long as I am more conservative on acceleration I am fine. If it does kick in all I need do is back off on the gas a bit. Then it goes away.

Perhaps your issue is like mine but more severe??? Mine does not set any codes. I have the Ross VCDS and have checked it after the fact, not when it is occurring.

Does your issue occur when you are less aggressive on the gas? Or, does it go away if you back off on the gas? I know you said it was not tripped if you drove like an old person. But just how easy on the gas do you have to be in order to not trip it?
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Old 02-20-2014, 07:37 AM
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