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Now it's my turn for air springs

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Old 03-18-2014, 07:44 AM   #1
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Default Now it's my turn for air springs

After 14+ years as a member and then as a moderator on AudiWorld reading about others' travails with the allroad air suspension, it's finally my turn. My wife's '02 is leaking air from the right rear overnight down to the stops. The compressor pumps it back up to Level 2, 3 or 4 but only for a few hours so I'm assuming it's probably a tired, leaking air bag and the compressor is still ok as the car only has 49K miles. But its 13 year age has likely taken it's toll on the rubber. Surprisingly, one of the rears went first vs. the fronts, perhaps due to the low mileage? The fronts may not be for long either.

I just ordered a pair of the Arnott Gen1 and am having them installed by my local Audi indy shop. All told, it will cost $825 including $300 labor. (I'm not much of a a DIYer like many of you guys). Hopefully, the original OEM shocks are still ok with the low mileage. I first checked with my dealer for the heck of it and was told it would be $2300+ to replace a pair of the OEMs. I expected the cost to be much higher but wow and WOW. So, it was a no brainer to take a chance on the Arnotts and my indy, even if they don't use 14K solid gold parts like the OEMs.
I've read about some issues with some of the Arnotts but generally, they seem to garner good reviews and they do have that lifetime warranty.

Now, every time I go out to the garage, I'll be always eyeballing the fronts, waiting for one of them to go next.
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Old 03-18-2014, 12:19 PM   #2
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Happens to us all. My shocks were getting rough around 75k. Yours should be okay for while.
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Old 03-18-2014, 01:29 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by all_Kobiwon View Post
Happens to us all. My shocks were getting rough around 75k. Yours should be okay for while.
Not so much the miles but it's the age of her '02 that worries me. I guess I'll find out next week when the air springs are replaced and we can get a good look at them on the rack.
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Old 03-18-2014, 01:31 PM   #4
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That's odd (to me at least) that a rear bag went on yours.

They seem to be long lived as both my rear bags are original with over 200K miles on them. I had one rear shock go bad at about 175K but it didn't affect the bag ; I must have caught it early enough. I can't say the shop has done many if any rears on the old allroad.

Going Arnott was a good call you made; lifetime warranty vs. Audi's one year....plus a whole lot easier on the wallet.

I've had the Gen1 bags on the fronts for well over 100K miles. Not sure if the quality is as good these days (a lot of premature Gen2 failures) but the old Gen1 sure did me right.
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Old 03-19-2014, 02:19 AM   #5
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My rear shocks of MY00 are still original having at least 220.000km. One is 70%, other is weak, 50% so I will change them. Do not mind the age, the mileage is relevant.
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Old 03-19-2014, 05:24 AM   #6
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Well, if mileage is the determining factor, with only 49K miles of my wife primarily driving (gently) to the store and back, we'll hopefully be ok with the shocks for awhile. The front bags still concern me though - I'm not looking forward to another $850 just yet.
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Old 03-28-2014, 02:10 PM   #7
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Quick update. Got the new Arnott standard rear air springs installed and so far, no more leak. He checked the shocks, compressor and front air springs and said all looked good. My wife says the ride is smoother and less jarring than before the air spring went south. I'll have to drive it to see if she's imagining it or if she's right.

BTW, if anyone is located in SE MA, I highly recommend Chris at Fourward Audi & VW Service in Millis. Former Audi dealer tech who started his small shop a couple of years ago. A Great guy to work with, knowledgeable and very reasonable prices. He also has no problem with you supplying your own parts. He says about the only thing he can't do is wheel/tire work and replacement keyfob coding (yet).
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