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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi . This is my first post on here .
I aquired an 07 t5 long wheel base 4 motion last June for £8k ...
With full service history mostly at VW main dealers .
which drives perfectly . I then added windows for £500.
Just before new year however - the ABS lamp came on ...
But only intermittently ...
and eventually the hand break lamp came on, then the warning beeps started . And then the speedo started to behave irrationally - eventually just not working - and the fuel gauge warning lamp came on unnecessarily .
I went to VW Sinclair Cardiff (main dealer) and suggested to them that it could be a wiring problem ... ? They looked at it for half an hour and concluded that they needed more time .
With a further hours work (on the computer) they concluded the ABS module was at fault - and quoted just under £2k for a new one (which would include the pump as VW parts only does this as a single unit) .
They offered no alternative solution . So I looked here .
After a thorough read up I got a local mechanic to remove the ABS module and sent it to ECU testing.com ... who declared the unit working with no fault ... and suggested, when asked, that it sounded like a wiring problem (by the way VW Sinclair gave me the only code as 'non communication') . I then took the van to VW specialists in Sully who have looked it over ...
They concluded, after various false leads ... that it's a wiring problem but that there are over one hundred wires to test ... There sparky could do this at a cost of £80 plus tax per hour ... Time estimate ?? Probably at least a day and no guarantee that it'll be fixed . They also suggest that I could go back to VW Sinclair who in theory would replace the working module and then be forced to find the real error and fix that within the 2k cost .
I've spent circa £400 so far and I'm in week 6 .
How can it cost between 1 and 2.5k to fix some dodgy wiring ?
What kind of a world have we made for ourselves ?
It just doesn't seem possible .
So anyone got any ideas beyond an endless sparkys wage or £2k to replace a not broken item ?
Many many thanks in advance .

In the words of Cool Hand Luke ...
"What we have here ... is a failure ... to comunicate"
 

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The VW dealer have given you incorrect information. The ECU half of the ABS module is available separately and it's about £6-700. Their diagnosis is probably correct though. The ABS ECU's are quite a common failure on T5s and your symptoms are a classic indication of ECU failure. When they fail, it often causes an intermittent fault because it's the connections between the terminal pins and circuit board, at the wiring connector, which give trouble. This can also give the impression of a wiring fault because the ECU fails to connect to some of the wiring intermittently. The ECU could pass an off vehicle test because the fault is intermittent. Someone on here has managed to open their ECU and solder the terminal pins in the ECU with success. That would be your cheapest option if you can manage it or get someone to do it for you. Have a look through the last dozen topics in the 'brakes' section, it wasn't that long ago. My advice, read more, spend less. Good luck.
 

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Don't spend out anymore money,I'd just replace the ABS ECU. I've just had a T5 Kombi with the ABS and traction lights on, tried the diagnostics and it came back with a 'no communications' message. Lucky for me I had the complete unit off my T5 I broke :D I got that fitted, £20, and then paid my regular mapping / diags chap £30 to program it, all is now good again T:
I see you are in South Wales, you are welcome to call in and I'll plug in my machine to have a look. The charge? just drop £3 into a cancer charity box for me and I'll also be able explain how to remove the ECU so you can possibly get it repaired and still use your van T:
I'll PM you my number over now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Hi .

Many thanks for all the replies .

So, yes, I'm aware that u can get the module from TPS for £658 ... I think ... forgot to mention that in first post ... was lost in an angry haze .

The problem for me seems to be whether it really is the abs module that is broken or if it's wiring .

I spoke to ECU testing.com and they said that they open the modules up and also run them in a simulator .

But ... I'm guessing u could be right - Rusty - that there diagnosis could still be in error if the problem is intermittent ... and I actually put that too them and they said it either works or it doesn't ... but they would say that ... They did offer to test it again - but the post alone is another £30 to get it there and back ...

I originally weighed up the cost of a new module vs checking wiring and went for wire checks as I'd found at least 2 threads on the brick yard forum who'd fixed the problem this way ... I've even found threads where people have bought a new module only to find it didn't fix the problem !

Anyway .. I voted for a wire check and asked VW sully to do this and a week later they are suggesting a heavy bill as reported In my first post.

In theory - a good mechanic would have access to a 100% definitively working module that they could try on a suspect van? ... thus eliminating the dilemma... no ? Would u need too many versions for different years ?

Anyway my options seem to be as follows:

1 - continue to hunt for dodgy wires with with VW sully or another...
hoping that it isn't the the abs module.

2 - buy a new module and hope it isn't a wiring problem.

3 - visit dave jj (thanks !) and get the module off and open it myself and try to solder it as suggested in the sti 360 thread ... or just get it off myself to try sending away again ... (and save £50 at the garage) .

4 - try Richard at Civs ... as suggested by Taffwinn

???

By the way ...

Costa so far :

£45 + £90 inc tax ... at VW Sinclair main dealer (1.5 hrs)

£45 + tax (£72) for ECU testing
+ postage £12 on the way out and £18 on the way back
+ module remove and re fix at local mechanic £45 + vat per hour.

then VW sully at £49 + vat per hour
and their sparky at £80 + vat per hour
 

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For what it worth I had exactly same issues dec 13 , started off with just occasional abs lamp on then would clear , then all lights u have mentioned , it was intermittent but frequency increased , my local guy read codes , changed front left abs sensor which is what reader suggested all good for a day then back to square one !! Went to vw Indy who had loads if implausible or non communication with obd issues , sent abs ecu off to bbreman they were not sure took 3 weeks with them then they said it was buggered , got van back with abs ecu not connected , running like a bag of nails , nearly £ 400 lighter for nothing much t b h , took the plunge with new abs control unit , think paid 510 plus the vat and £ 60 plus vat to fit , re bleed brakes ( new fluid ) and re code , came back all spot on ! That was done by vw by the way , vans been a1 for last 20 k
 

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For what it worth I had exactly same issues dec 13 , started off with just occasional abs lamp on then would clear , then all lights u have mentioned , it was intermittent but frequency increased , my local guy read codes , changed front left abs sensor which is what reader suggested all good for a day then back to square one !! Went to vw Indy who had loads if implausible or non communication with obd issues , sent abs ecu off to bbreman they were not sure took 3 weeks with them then they said it was buggered , got van back with abs ecu not connected , running like a bag of nails , nearly £ 400 lighter for nothing much t b h , took the plunge with new abs control unit , think paid 510 plus the vat and £ 60 plus vat to fit , re bleed brakes ( new fluid ) and re code , came back all spot on ! That was done by vw by the way , vans been spot on for last 20 k , 07 174 combi , really frustrating and expensive issue , my van was off road for 6 weeks in total and must have read every thread on hear and brickyard relating to this , feel you pain dude :-(
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Phoned ECU TESTING and they will test it again for free save postage (£26 there and back with insurance) .

And because it's changed from being very intermittent lamps and warnings to permenent lamps and no speedo etc ...

I think it's worth a shot ... as they now say they could of passed it as good because it was intermittent .

And they'll rebuild for £180 Inc VAT .

(This is less the original test cost ... £45 + vat which they take off the repair charge)

I've looked under the bonnet and watched videos of people removing other (non vw t5) modules ... so will take it off myself .

Apparently you are supposed to remove the negative Battery wire first ?

Any idea what tool is best for the bolts/screws ?

Doesn't look like any of mine will fit .

I have a ratchet set so could buy the right adaptor from Halfords or something ...

Will try to video this or at least take photos .

With the right tool it all looks accessible though the lower two nut pair are not in direct vision ... This photo from my 1st post to ECU shows the three bolt positions.

By the way the module is right there when u pop the bonnet ... just left of the battery .

Also apparently it's best to try and lever the catch off the loom connection with a flat head screw driver to loosen it first ... so as to prevent snapping the tabs off the pull handle ...

 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I couldn't find anything on the net about how to take off a vw t5 ABS module ...

Nor even it's location ...

So here are photos ...

Under the bonnet :



Left of battery :

http://www.vwt4forum.co.uk/picture.php?
albumid=24000&pictureid=173408

Black box :



Tabs on loom wire connection :



Rusted top bolt / screw :



Best tool for removing this ?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I couldn't find anything on the net about how to take off a vw t5 ABS module ...

Nor even it's location ...

So here are photos ...

Under the bonnet :



Left of battery :



Black box :





Tabs on loom wire connection :



Rusted top bolt / screw :



Best tool for removing this ?
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Well, took it off myself ...
Was very straight forward .
5 minutes .
(Would be more work if bolts are seized .)
The photos and tool are all u need .
Though I also bought a flexible drive set for £15 .
...
Anyway ...

Sent it to ECU testing again and ...

Just heard from them ... they say it's the processor ...

and so think it's unrepairable ...

:(

They have refunded the original test cost and are sending it back for free .

I will write to them to try and get the VW Sully work payments refunded too ... as was commissioned on the basis of their initial diagnosis and commentary ...

Meantime my Mot is up mid March ...

So I guess I'm buying a new ABS module ... £684 (vat inc) !

I'm guessing this will need 'programing' ?

This will hopefully be the final event in the saga ...

And so ...

If I get the VW Sully costs back ...

Total will be £135 VW dealer diagnosis charge plus

£684 + post ... new abs module
+ tool purchase
+ post for ECU testing .
+ original mechanic fee for abs removal and re fix

= circa £920 - £950 ...

Nasty .
:(
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Yes ... Triffic ...

I am .

As it happens I've just bought a solder iron to fix another circuit board ... This one for the house heating system ...

So it's worth a shot ...
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Okay ...
got it open ...
It obviously has not been opened .
And ECU testing told me they open all the modules ...
so that's a bit odd for a start ...
unless they can get them on and off super clean ?
But the unit was covered in a uniform layer of grime with no sign of tampering ... anyway ...
Used a junior hack saw ...
with a b+d work bench to clamp it .
There is an obvious join mark which I targeted .
(See pictures)
u only need to go in the depth of the blade ... or less maybe ?
Because of its shape u can't cut all the way round .
So I had to go in with a flat head screw driver and lever it off two uncutable points.
This worked ok ...
And makes me think u could do far less sawing and probably pop off most of the lid ... ?
inside I can't see any obvious faults .
It all looks perfect bar 1 or 2 slight deviations from perfection on some of the pins ... I've zoomed in on one .
This doesn't look like it should cause the circuit board any problems though ...
Nevertheless ... I will solder everything I can get at without fear of damaging circuits on the board .
I'll at least solder all the pins and post new photos ...
unless anyone has other suggestions ?

http://www.vwt4forum.co.uk/picture.php?albumid=24000&pictureid=174594[/img

Lid :

[img]http://www.vwt4forum.co.uk/picture.php?albumid=24000&pictureid=174596

Cut line :



Cut line :



Curved join area 1 :



Curved join area 2 :



Suspect pin ? :



Close up :

 

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Does the board lift off the pins? If you're exploring and it does, may be worthwhile taking a look underneath, and it might let you see the part of the pins that connect with what I assume are through-plated holes...
 
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