replacement Intercooler options

#1
Hello Everyone,
Im looking for a little advice. My intercooler has split (2002 1.4TDI AMF, 172000 miles). It had been whistling for 2 years on and off (didnt know the intercooler was the cause of it) but now its more like a hoover when i accelerate. No warning lights or limp home but big loss in power.
Im wondering what options for replacement exist. Cost is a factor here. The car is in good nick and Ive owned it since 40k and serviced it religiously but realistically is only worth about €500. Recently all the shock absorbers (FSDs) were replaced under warranty and new front springs (spidan) fitted. But its due a timing belt too and the gearbox is notchy as hell and sometimes very difficult to get into 3rd (have to go back to 2nd or 4th and try again). Its been remapped to about 100bhp or so i think. Last week a friend driving behind me said it was very smokey when accelerating, but maybe thats due to the then just leaky intercooler? Im in Ireland too.
Anyway. If someone could chime in with what options exist in the way of replacement intercoolers and their cost that would be really appreciated. Trying to decide whether its worth undertaking the expense of repair.
Many thanks
Nick
 
#2
I assume that timmus' all alloy option is out of the price range but, other than an Audi one,A2Steve recently mentioned buying an intercooler from a Freelander 1 as it seemed to be the same size. Perhaps you could PM him for advice.
 

Skipton01

Well-Known Member
#3
Your best bet is to go for a Mk1 Freelander - they are pretty much identical in size to the A2 one, just a little thicker in the core (= more cooling) and will need a little work in adapting the mounting points, but it's by far the cheapest way to do it. They can be had off the famous auction site for £50 and have welded end caps, meaning no more splitting or blowing.

As to your smoke, it's almost certainly down to the intercooler and will likely go away when the new one is fitted. And gears - I reckon your box will be in need of a top up - it's amazing how many owners and garages think its a sealed system. It's not - A2s are famous for weeping from the drive shaft outputs and over a decade, the box will run very low. There's guides on here how to change the oil (if you've got a jack and stands, you can do it yourself). Then, I'd give the gearshift cables an alignment too and I bet your box will feel silky smooth again.

I'm tempted to say get on the ferry and I'll sort it for you, but I really haven't the time these days and I'm sure there's places over there who can sort you out. Cambelt and water pump kit is around £100 plus fitting and isn't too hard a job either.

What you say the car is realistically worth is only relevant if you've made up your mind to chip it in. From what you say, it's a good little car and with £3-400 spending on it, you'll have a car that'll give you reliable service for many, many years to come.
 
#4
Hello Everyone,
Im looking for a little advice. My intercooler has split (2002 1.4TDI AMF, 172000 miles). It had been whistling for 2 years on and off (didnt know the intercooler was the cause of it) but now its more like a hoover when i accelerate. No warning lights or limp home but big loss in power.
Im wondering what options for replacement exist. Cost is a factor here. The car is in good nick and Ive owned it since 40k and serviced it religiously but realistically is only worth about €500. Recently all the shock absorbers (FSDs) were replaced under warranty and new front springs (spidan) fitted. But its due a timing belt too and the gearbox is notchy as hell and sometimes very difficult to get into 3rd (have to go back to 2nd or 4th and try again). Its been remapped to about 100bhp or so i think. Last week a friend driving behind me said it was very smokey when accelerating, but maybe thats due to the then just leaky intercooler? Im in Ireland too.
Anyway. If someone could chime in with what options exist in the way of replacement intercoolers and their cost that would be really appreciated. Trying to decide whether its worth undertaking the expense of repair.
Many thanks
Nick


Hi Nick

Sorry to hear about your failed intercooler on a much cherished A2.

One option for replacement could be fitting one of the intercoolers that are likely to be available soon when some members change over from the new batch of all-alloy intercoolers.

I have ordered one of these and therefore would have a discarded OEM unit available. I don't know a date for the work yet but if you are able to wait, I can find out a time-frame and PM you some details. I have checked with timmus that this is a suitable thing to do.

Good Luck

Hilary
 

timmus

A2OC Donor
#5
Your best bet is to go for a Mk1 Freelander...
Whilst this option is looking promising, I think it's possibly a bit early to be declaring it as the best bet. Unless I'm mistaken, nobody has yet done it. The boost input and output are angled very differently, which may mean that custom hosing needs to be manufactured. The bracketry also doesn't align, so a solution needs to be found for this issue. There are also the downsides of a thicker core to consider, as discussed in Sections 5 & 6 of the TDI120 thread.

One option for replacement could be fitting one of the intercoolers that are likely to be available soon when some members change over from the new batch of all-alloy intercoolers.
This could definitely be a cheap option for you. 24 all-alloy intercoolers are about to be shipped to various members across the UK and other European countries. Plenty of them will be fitted in the near future, thus releasing lots of OEM units. Yes, the OEM unit has the documented weakness that leads to failure (as has happened in your case), but it's a perfect fit and there should soon be plenty of them available on the second-hand market!

Cheers,

Tom
 
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A2Steve

A2OC Donor
#6
I haven't posted anything on this yet because i'm yet to plumb it in but it's certainly not a plug and play option. So far i've had to grind away the redundant lobes and i'm yet to make a bracket to support the bottom of the unit. I will do a write up but want to test its function first.

As Tom has mentioned the freelander unit is twice as deep as the standard unit so unless you are running a hybrid/bigger turbo as I am then it may even be a power hindrance in the real world due to increased lag.
 
#9
Hi All, Thanks for the responses. I have a sense of some options now anyway. I'm coming around to the idea of holding on to the old brute for a while longer. The thoughts of kicking tyres and taking a punt in the used car market fills me with far more dread than thinking about the possible risk of sinking a bit more into a car that has, although beginning to show its age of late, been thoroughly reliable over 10 years of ownership.

Hopefully the extra cost of the intercooler added to the new timing belt and waterpump that were coming up anyway wont be too bad.

I'll ring around a few reputable local garages tomorrow to get some quotes.

If anyone has gone for an aftermarket intercooler and not had it blow up in 18 months do let me know :) I think thats the path I will probably have to go to keep the cost down. Just wondering if there is any quality difference between nissens, hella, vemo, Van Wezel etc
 
#10
Thankyou Hilary for offering your intercooler... nice gesture !. Hilarys is a 75bhp tdi but if anyone needs a 90bhp intercooler mine will be available for free in the next few weeks. I will ask Rob and Marcus at WOM, if they don't mind, to give it the once over to make sure its fault free before handing it over. :)
 
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#11
Hi Nick

Sorry to hear about your failed intercooler on a much cherished A2.

One option for replacement could be fitting one of the intercoolers that are likely to be available soon when some members change over from the new batch of all-alloy intercoolers.

I have ordered one of these and therefore would have a discarded OEM unit available. I don't know a date for the work yet but if you are able to wait, I can find out a time-frame and PM you some details. I have checked with timmus that this is a suitable thing to do.

Good Luck

Hilary
Hi Hilary, Thanks so much for that offer. Really generous of you. I think I've now found a new one on ebay cheaply. If that turns out to not be any use I'll be in touch. Thanks again. N
 

murdo

A2OC Donor
#12
Thankyou Hilary for offering your intercooler... nice gesture !. Hilarys is a 75bhp tdi but if anyone needs a 90bhp intercooler mine will be available for free in the next few weeks. I will ask Rob and Marcus at WOM, if they don't mind, to give it the once over to make sure its fault free before handing it over. :)
I'd take that as a spare Dave. Very kind offer
 
#14
Hilary - If your TDI75 intercooler is up for grabs once you get the all alloy intercooler fitted I would welcome it
My new to me TDI75 as some light oil mist around the bottom of the intercooler, I know the signs and it is therefore on its last legs and has given me due notice of imminent failure
More than happy to pay for any packaging cost and of course postage

Cheers,
Paul
 
#15
Hi, Would anyone know the hours labour that would be reasonable for Cambelt, Waterpump and intercooler change? Ive been quoted 5 hours and wondering if this is sensible (2 for intercooler, 3 for Cambelt, Waterpump, auxiliary belt).
Thanks
N
 
#16
If anyone else has a ATL intercooler available I'd be a happy recipient :)

Given I have a remap I'm almost certain the one I have will go pffft any time soon.
 
#17
You don't actually need a tdi90 intercooler for the aTL. A standard tdi75 intercooler is the same. I just used another map sensor as a blanking plate which has the bonus of always having a spare with you.


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#18
Hi, Would anyone know the hours labour that would be reasonable for Cambelt, Waterpump and intercooler change? Ive been quoted 5 hours and wondering if this is sensible (2 for intercooler, 3 for Cambelt, Waterpump, auxiliary belt).
Thanks
N
Tbh that sounds about right. There is a fair bit of work in that list!
 
#20
I picked up a new audi intercooler on ebay. Its got an audi part number and audi stickers and audi rings in the pastic ends, and yellow caps over the main connectors on it. Its also got "behr" marked beside the audi rings. So perhaps if going for an aftermarket replacement the behr hella may be close to OEM quality. Not that oem quality is anything to write home about in this particular case. Though 170k miles over 15 years int too bad I guess.

Anyway, on with the show. Hopefully I'll get this fitted next week and be back on the road. Hoping to get the oil seal and bearing in the shift tower replaced too.