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83 4ks temp. guage design flaw?
For about 8 years now, I have had this nagging question about the
temperature guages in my 83 4ks. 8 years ago, I wrecked (was wrecked, to be
more correct) my 4ks and following the repair, I had a nasty incident while
driving the 45 miles home from the shop. After the fact, it became known
that apparently the oil pump had been damaged during the accident *or* the
repair and failed. About 3 miles into the drive, my oil light and warning
buzzer went off. I stopped that car and checked the oil. Half a quart low.
Hmmmm, added a bit of oil and wondered why that would cause the warning
stuff to be activated. Got in, started the car and continued driving--no
5 miles later, the same thing happened. Niavely (I was a green 20 years
old), I thought, "Well, there must be some malfunction. I'm on the
interstate in the middle of nowhere and will try to limp the car home."
(Now accepting all jeers, hisses, and rude remarks about my intelligence...)
However, I did have the sense to constantly check BOTH of my temperature
guages, determined to stop immediately if they even moved a hair. Nothing...
25 miles later, going up the last hill (SW Virginia), my car sputtered to a
stop and I couldn't restart it. However, the temperature guages never
moved. Had it towed back and guess what. Scarred crank shaft, ruined two
cyliners and pistons, etc., etc., etc. All in all, a $2000 rebuild was
The mechanics diagnosis was that the oil pump had failed. The engine
essentially burned up inside. "But the temperature guages never moved!" I
pleaded. He continued to explain that **BOTH** temperature guages monitor
the temperature of the oil pan rather than the actual engine temperature.
If the oil pump is functioning properly, the oil pan temp reflects the
engine temp. However, if the oil pump is kaput, like in my car, then while
the oil in the oil pan is nice and happy, the engine is burning up.
I truly believe this to be a serious design flaw!! What is the story on the
newer Audi's? On my A4Q? Please let me know. Thanks in advance.
83 4000s, 200+k miles,
96 A4Q, 204 miles,
"In a world of compromise, some don't"--HK