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Car died on the road after reinstalling OEM turbo

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Probationary Member
Dec 18, 2002
To make a long story short, I installed a complete exhaust system on my friends 96 TSI AWD about three weeks ago. During the installation I broke one of the bolts holding the O2 hosing on. Yesterday I took the turbo off to have this broken bolt removed and fix an exhaust leak as well.

Well I get the turbo back from the Machine Shop today and reinstall it on the car. Everything bolts up great since I'm using new bolts and I plug everything back in, Fans and O2 sensor. I let the car idle for about 8-10 minutes to burn off some spilled coolant and give me time to clean up my tools. So far everything is great.

I get the car on the road, she feels awesome, nice and smooth acceleration just like it should be. About 1 mile down the road, I'm comming up through second gear, not really dogging the car but giving it some gas, and I go to shift into third around 5,500 RPMs. Thats when the car died.

The tach just fell to zero, and the engine wouldn't come back on. I tried to bump start it with since I was doing about 50mph, and nothing. The lights didn't dim, the car didn't turn off, just the engine, just as if I had turned the key off. And then the car wouldn't start after that. It turns over, but won't start.

So now its back in my driveway and I'm stumped. There was a faint smell of something electrical burning in the area of the intake, but it wasn't comming from the fuze box cover and no smoke was visible. The only other unusal clue was that I was installing the turbo during some light rain, and maybe something got wet, though I did my best to keep everything dry.

Please help. Keep in mind that I'm tired and I've only had 45 minutes of sleep in th past 48 hours. I'm going to bed now.

hmmm.... i had that happen to me a couple of times in the same day... i figured out that it was the negative or positive wires going to the battery ....probably the roundy thing thats clamped on to the wires is either very dirty or wasted from the inside and you need to get new ones... same thing happened to me shut off with the quickness ... did you take out the positive terminal out of the battery before intalling the turbo back... if so that has to be it ... your exhaust system would not effect your engine to turn on or off... i hope that helps ... oh yeah did you take a turn or went through a pot hole when your car shut off it might have caused the terminal wires to move slightly than shut off..

I was going straight down the road, hadn't hit anything and I'm sure that my terminals are clean and tight. I didn't remove the battery terminal during installation, so I don't think its going to be a loose terminal.

it should be something electrical check your fuses and your wires going to the alternator ... to be on the safe side you should still check your battery terminals ..... when the engine is in motion it would not just shut off without any funny big noises or smoke coming out off the engine ... it has to be something sounds like your energy to your engine was shutt off to it immediatley it has to be electrical.... check and check and check all you wires in the engine ...

I took it to a local trusted shop and it turns out it was a sensor right above the intake manifold and fuel rail. I don't know the name of this sensor, but its black has about 5 wires going into it and is posisioned vertically right behind the number 2 and 3 cylinders.

Turns out it looks like its been loose for a while. Once reconnected, the car runs like a champ. And better yet, it wasn't my fault cause I wasn't any where near that area!:p

oh, and just for sh!ts and giggles, I checked the battery terminals, both are tighter than a virgin on prom night. :thumb:

hey thats kool they found that weird problem.damn dsms could never figure them out they are like woman i would keep your probem you had just in case .... tight as a virgin:D
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