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I give up on the combi valve!

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Old 03-05-2014, 10:29 PM   #1
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Default I give up on the combi valve!

Well, I give up, dropped a million gaskets and screws while trying to get the gasket between the combi valve adapter arm and the block in place. Even when I did get the gasket in there I still had a huge leak. Ripped the gasket back out, thought I would half *** it with high temp silicone again but nope, exhaust leak again. So tomorrow it's off to the dealer to see how much they'll charge me to correctly fix it. I hope they don't just torque those bolts more then I did and charge me $100. They're already damn tight and I do kinda want to be able to loosen then in the future if I ever have to replace the valve cover gasket again...
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Old 03-06-2014, 02:06 AM   #2
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Have you tried gluing the gasket to the combi valve before attempting to reinstall it. It worked for me just using a bit of RTV to hold the gasket in place. Just be sure to let it cure enough before reinstalling it to keep it from falling off of the combi valve.
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Old 03-06-2014, 03:17 AM   #3
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Default Yes..get some hi-tack or other gasket adhesive

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Well, I give up, dropped a million gaskets and screws while trying to get the gasket between the combi valve adapter arm and the block in place. Even when I did get the gasket in there I still had a huge leak. Ripped the gasket back out, thought I would half *** it with high temp silicone again but nope, exhaust leak again. So tomorrow it's off to the dealer to see how much they'll charge me to correctly fix it. I hope they don't just torque those bolts more then I did and charge me $100. They're already damn tight and I do kinda want to be able to loosen then in the future if I ever have to replace the valve cover gasket again...
Use it on one side only and just a little.
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Old 03-06-2014, 11:41 AM   #4
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Using a little RTV was the only way I could get the gasket aligned correctly and mounted. Used a thin amount but still a huge exhaust leak, sounded like there wasn't any gasket at all. Anyway, going into the dealer tomorrow, service department took me into the bay to talk to a tech about it, it was determined it'll take 2 to 2.5 hrs of labor as long as the bolt holes are stripped or something and that's why I can't get it tight enough. (I don't think they are, I think my 3 inch micro ratchet doesn't allow me to get a good enough grip/enough leverage and this torque)

So hopefully by 10:30 tomorrow I'll be ~$250 lighter but also exhaust leak free and finally this massive job will be complete!
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Old 03-06-2014, 12:04 PM   #5
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I usually glue the gasket on with like super weather strip adhesive. Holds tight and doesnt affect how it seals. Silicone is too sloppy and doesnt setup quick enough to be very useful for gluing gaskets.
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Old 03-06-2014, 12:22 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by acarney View Post
Well, I give up, dropped a million gaskets and screws while trying to get the gasket between the combi valve adapter arm and the block in place. Even when I did get the gasket in there I still had a huge leak. Ripped the gasket back out, thought I would half *** it with high temp silicone again but nope, exhaust leak again. So tomorrow it's off to the dealer to see how much they'll charge me to correctly fix it. I hope they don't just torque those bolts more then I did and charge me $100. They're already damn tight and I do kinda want to be able to loosen then in the future if I ever have to replace the valve cover gasket again...
I use Permatex Tack & Seal to hold these things in place for assembly.
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Old 03-06-2014, 02:39 PM   #7
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My girlfriend knows I refer to the combi valves as "annoying valves" and now you know why. These things are the worst design for putting on and taking off. It couldn't get anymore difficult.

I have never used any kind of gasket on these, I feel it may actually help create the leak. You are screwing into aluminum, so it isn't like you want to torque the hell out of it anyway. I always put two screws through and fiddle with it carefully. Maybe a little silicone on the screw head to keep it from falling out would help. The other thing you could maybe do is find something you could use as a post for 2 of the holes, so that you could slide the gasket over the posts, slide the valve over, install the screw in the third hole, and then remove the posts one as a time to install the other two screws. I'm just thinking out loud though. Kind of like the wheel install tool.

If there is a tough way to do something simple, Audi engineers will find it.
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Old 03-06-2014, 10:17 PM   #8
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My girlfriend knows I refer to the combi valves as "annoying valves" and now you know why. These things are the worst design for putting on and taking off. It couldn't get anymore difficult.

I have never used any kind of gasket on these, I feel it may actually help create the leak. You are screwing into aluminum, so it isn't like you want to torque the hell out of it anyway. I always put two screws through and fiddle with it carefully. Maybe a little silicone on the screw head to keep it from falling out would help. The other thing you could maybe do is find something you could use as a post for 2 of the holes, so that you could slide the gasket over the posts, slide the valve over, install the screw in the third hole, and then remove the posts one as a time to install the other two screws. I'm just thinking out loud though. Kind of like the wheel install tool.

If there is a tough way to do something simple, Audi engineers will find it.
They could have made it so the engine/transmission had to be removed as an assembly to change the valves...
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Old 03-06-2014, 11:24 PM   #9
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They could have made it so the engine/transmission had to be removed as an assembly to change the valves...
Actually jokingly asked the dealer if that was the recommended service for it and she laughed and said it sure would make it easier, lol
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Old 03-07-2014, 05:13 AM   #10
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Actually jokingly asked the dealer if that was the recommended service for it and she laughed and said it sure would make it easier, lol
Funny! Of course if you put 2 Audi engineers in a 10 ft hole with an 11 ft ladder they will make a shovel out the ladder and dig their way out. But then again these same engineers did throw an S3 engine in an A1 so maybe they're not all bad...............

http://cnettv.cnet.com/audi-a1-quatt...-50158657.html
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Old 03-07-2014, 06:23 AM   #11
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Panteras actually had to do that…step one, remove engine and transaxle assembly.
It wasn't that bad, either.
Soldering or brazing the unobtainium fuel tank was fun. Boiling water in empty tank, emptied out tank, filled tank with water and tipped on side with hole to be brazed up top…little air below spot, touch with torch, usually a small pop then braze like crazy, move on to next hole before all the water leaks out.

Today I'd just put in an aftermarket fuel cell...
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Old 03-07-2014, 09:05 AM   #12
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Well I hate my life. Apparently the adapter arm was cracked which is why it would never seal & was venting the exhaust gas. $130 from Audi + about $40 if I want the part overnighted so I can get the car back Monday afternoon. Plus the $250 labor... Ugh.

I don't know how the heck I didn't see the crack, it must have been pretty small! I wish I could get Saturday deliver in my area so I could order online and overnight it. Then that part delivered would only be $140 saving a few bucks at least...
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Old 03-07-2014, 10:04 AM   #13
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Well I hate my life. Apparently the adapter arm was cracked which is why it would never seal & was venting the exhaust gas. $130 from Audi + about $40 if I want the part overnighted so I can get the car back Monday afternoon. Plus the $250 labor... Ugh.

I don't know how the heck I didn't see the crack, it must have been pretty small! I wish I could get Saturday deliver in my area so I could order online and overnight it. Then that part delivered would only be $140 saving a few bucks at least...
Is this the little elbow on the back of the head? The pipe? I have a bunch of stuff.

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Old 03-07-2014, 02:21 PM   #14
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Is this the little elbow on the back of the head? The pipe? I have a bunch of stuff.

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Ya. It's the like four to six inch long "adapter arm" that connects to the back of the engine and then connects to the bottom of the actual combination valve. Totally would have been awesome if I saw this first... But I already told the dealer to order it & overnight it so it'll be ready Monday afternoon instead of Wed/Thur :-/
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Old 03-08-2014, 02:25 AM   #15
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Acarney - that totally sucks. I am sorry man. The good news is, you will have an engine with all new parts after all you've been through! You should be good for another 250,000 with regular maintenance, haha.

One day, you will look back at this and laugh. Or maybe not.
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Old 03-08-2014, 06:17 AM   #16
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Acarney, you have everyone's condolences. I am sure it does not help much, but we have all had similar experiences. Most of the time a little help from the guys here, a little googling, an aftermarket part or two, and all is fine. But sometimes, you need to pay the piper. Good luck.
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Old 03-08-2014, 10:13 AM   #17
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Thanks guys. It totally sucks having to pay do much for an issue that I thought could be resolved with a ~$5 gasket AND for something that was most likely done by my indie (neither gasket had been installed it turns out, probably torqued too much and then a stress crack from heating/cooling cycles) BUT I have so much pride in my car now!! I can break it down and replace items and belts, gaskets and (some) hoses now. Change the fluids and bulbs. I feel like I can tackle just about anything without running to the dealer all the time now. I can source Audi parts online now for 20% discount or so (via genuineaudiparts.com ) and can help others with my stories and experience. Plus I've got a bunch of standard tools now & some of the special Audi tools (can lock bar, pin, support pins, etc)

Most of all, I know it's being done RIGHT. Between the dealer & my indie my belly pan had only like 3 screws holding it on for example. Now it's fully cleaned off and completely bolted on. It's stuff like that which makes me feel better about the car!

With new oil (yep, going to change it myself now, I figured I COULD but never did before because of the hassle, after this big job it's nothing AND the savings now will be worth it to keep me doing it), new gaskets, coolant, breather hose that's completely clear, I swear it runs smoother and better and I'm getting slightly better mileage. I love the car. I hate the price and (kinda) hate the work, but it's an Audi, my Audi.

Couldn't have done it without help from you guys more then a couple times. I'm sure I'll have more questions but hopefully not for a while once this combi valve is fixed. I THINK that is my last engine bay related issue currently...
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Old 03-08-2014, 10:13 AM
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