The Audi 3.0T supercharged engine is very well engineered and is capable of supporting far more power than when it rolled out of the dealership. Nonetheless, when installing performance products there are some things to keep in mind. Some of the items mentioned are common maintenance items and others are more related to performance upgrades.
This article is applicable to the following Audi models:
- B8 S4
- B8.5 S4
- B8 S5 (excluding 4.2L)
- B8.5 S5 (excluding 4.2L)
- B8.5 S5 Cabriolet
- C7 A6
- C7 A6 Allroad
- C7 A7
- 8R Q5 with 3.0T
- 8R SQ5
If your car feels like it isn't quite running right consider the follow maintenance suggestions. If you have tried all the suggestions below and are still stumped reach out to our support team.
Ignition System - Spark Plugs and Coil Packs
Ensuring coil packs and spark plugs are in proper working order is essential when upgrading engine software. If misfire codes are present try swapping coils & plugs between cylinders to diagnose the issue. If the misfire follows the swapped parts to another cylinder that signifies the faulty hardware.
Coil packs - Don’t cheap out on low quality brands. We recommend using factory coils or quality brands.
Spark plugs - Stick to quality brands such as NGK or Denso. It is also important to gap spark plugs with performance in mind. The recommended plug gaps are listed below:
Stage 1 - BKR8EIX gapped to .028”
Stage 2 with Single Pulley - BKR8EIX gapped to .026”
Stage 2 with Dual Pulley - BKR9EIX gapped to .026”
3.0T Supercharger Intercooler Cores
One of the most common failures that the 3.0T experiences are failed supercharger intercooler cores. Typically this is a result of the braising used during manufacturing failing. It may be time to check or replace intercooler cores if you are experiencing higher than normal Air Intake Temperatures (AIT), coolant loss or air continues to enter the system even after bleeding it.
Stock catalysts are common failure points. There can be several “hints” that cats are failing but a common situation may be derived from analyzing data logs. Many times boost will far exceed boost spec/request. In addition fuel trims may be substantially higher than normal. Another symptom of failing catalysts are hesitations when accelerating. If hesitations are necessary this could be a sign of something very serious and should not be driven until diagnosed.
More simply, you may hear a rattling noise from the exhaust system. If this is present inspect the catalysts for obstructions or damaged internals.
The stock unit that comes on the car can even be under spec’d for a completely stock car and more so on stage 1 power levels. If high AITs are present and the coolant system is healthy considering upgrading the heat exchanger.
3.0T Higher Pressure Fuel Pump (HPFP)
A failed or underperforming HPFP will result in low fuel rail pressure. If the car does have lower than normal rail pressure it may be time to swap it out for a new one. It can also be a good time to upgrade to an Integrated Engineering 3.0T HPFP. It’s the highest flowing pump available and will make the most out of a dual pulley or dual pulley with upgraded throttle body ECU software.
DSG/S-Tronic Transmission Fluid
We recommend using factory transmission fluid. It is very common that the factory transmission fluid will support higher torque levels than other fluids that are available. It is even more important to use high quality fluids when installing Integrated Engineering transmission software.
Over time the snout bearing on the supercharger drive shaft may wear out. By pulling back and forth on the shaft you can determine if there is any play. If so, it may be time for a new supercharger altogether.
As another note it is possible to damage this bearing by incorrectly installing an upgraded supercharger pulley. If it’s a press fit gear make sure it’s well heated before sliding it onto the shaft. If it doesn’t go on far enough DO NOT hit it with a hammer! Remove it using the IE Supercharger Pulley Removal Tool and try again.
Before upgrading engine software it is a good idea to check the wear of the supercharger belt. Ensure that it is not too loose or has any fraying. It may also be worth keeping an extra around as they are cheap and easy to change if a failure occurs.
For Stage 1 and Stage 2 cars the factory belt should be used. The factory belt part number is 06E903137T.
Stage 2 Dual Pulley cars must use an overdrive serpentine belt. The recommended belt is made by Bando and is part number 7PK1320.
Motor mounts are common failure points on many VAG cars. 3.0T engines are no exception and given the added engine weight over smaller engines they are even more failure prone. If under acceleration or braking clunking noises are present, double check their health.
For more information on Integrated Engineering's 3.0T Supercharged products and performance achievements check out the following articles:
Upgrade path for 3.0T - A great path that shows you where to start modifying your 3.0T
Blending ethanol correctly - For those running ethanol blends this is a must. Incorrectly blended ethanol mixes can lead to catastrophic engine failure.
IE 3.0T quarter mile record - Not everyone needs or wants to go 10s but it’s still a great example of what this platform is capable of.
IE 3.0T 10 second quarter mile customer page - A log of IE customers that shows the high level of refinement of IE ECU and DSG/Transmission tunes.