ATL Gearbox whine advice please

CrispyEdd

Member
Hello,

My (1 of 80?!) 2004 90bhp ATL is at 140K, its just had new turbo, new clutch/DMF, new dog bone mount and lots of loving here there and everywhere. Its running really really sweet, no clunking bumps or rattles and now average 60MPG even with 80mph motorway cruises. What I'm noticing though is lots of transmission noises:

1. it whines coasting in 3rd and 4th a lot
2. when idling with clutch out and out of gear there is transmission muffled metal rattles, when I did the clutch it subsides a bit but when I put it in 1st its silent (with clutch still in) until i get moving again

So it feels like the innards of gearbox is rattley, couple that with quite loud whining in 3rd and 4th (hot or cold) its making me think that its time to rebuild the box via a specialist.

Can anyone give advice on which parts are the likely culprits so i can be sure I get them quoted for renewing? I remember timmus depicting some wierd planatary output cogs that were clunking on his 120 project but I dont have clunks just dry transmission whine and rattles.
Any genral advice on this topic much appreciated. I dont want a 6 speed conversion I just want it running like new in there really, I love the car and love the fact its hard to do stuff and hard to get things for it all part of the enjoyment, otherwise life would be dull even driving to work.

Thanks Guys.
 

audifan

A2OC Donor
Firstly replace the gearbox oil. Audi claim sealed for life, but....
When was the brake fluid last changed and the clutch slave flushed?
Could be a DMF and / or release bearing issue or even the springs in the friction plate.
 

audifan

A2OC Donor
If the above oil and brake fluid change do not improve things, then you are looking at removing the gearbox to inspect the DMF and release bearing so may be time to swap the gearbox for another good one.
 

CrispyEdd

Member
Thanks @audifan, it has had a new LUK DMF CLutch with new release bearing, spring bolts everyhting top hat all the thing listed on this forum for clutch change. Ill look at doing the gearbox oil myself, there a guide on here, jsut need a long hose if I recall.

HHistory says gearbox oil was 'vg 060 726 A2 transmission oil at 113K', so 32K ago.?

Regardng the brake fluid clutch change Im nervous about that as isnt it true if a garage uses a power bleed it can damage the seals in the clutch cyclinder? No history of change documented for brake fluid.
 

audifan

A2OC Donor
TBH you could easily do the well overdue brake and clutch flush / bleed yourself. Out of curiosity what colour is the fluid in the reservoir? I have bled several cars myself either using a Gunson Eezibleed kit or a hand held vacuum pump. I always remove as much old fluid from the reservoir without exposing the pipes first. I also place a block of wood under the brake and clutch pedals to prevent them travelling lower than in normal use. This prevents damage to the seals in the master cylinders. Keep flushing each line in sequence until perfectly clean fluid is released and do not over tighten any bleed nipple as they will shear off - also before you try to slacken any brake nipple give it a good soaking in release agent.

Tip with the gearbox is to make sure you can remove the filler plug before you drain it of old oil, that said you can remove the tower and fill through there just get the quantity of oil right if doing it this way. Always buy your gearbox oil from Audi.
 

dj_efk

A2OC Donor
Honestly I know you have dismissed the idea but on an ATL I would just replace the gearbox with a PTW six speed, it really does transform the car both around town (with a lovely flexible 3rd gear usable from 25mph / 1600rpm) and on long journeys where 70mph equals 1950rpm.
 

CrispyEdd

Member
Honestly I know you have dismissed the idea but on an ATL I would just replace the gearbox with a PTW six speed, it really does transform the car both around town (with a lovely flexible 3rd gear usable from 25mph / 1600rpm) and on long journeys where 70mph equals 1950rpm.
That does sound ideal tbh, it's just not original and I feel obliged to keep it as original as I can, part of the charm for me is its buzzy bee character and I like its little faults etc. Maybe I need another atl to tune up and customise! It's like golf gti mk2, the most valuable prized ones are now the original ones. Mrs won't let me buy another and I've got a good one so trapped by my own stubbornness!!
 

CrispyEdd

Member
TBH you could easily do the well overdue brake and clutch flush / bleed yourself. Out of curiosity what colour is the fluid in the reservoir? I have bled several cars myself either using a Gunson Eezibleed kit or a hand held vacuum pump. I always remove as much old fluid from the reservoir without exposing the pipes first. I also place a block of wood under the brake and clutch pedals to prevent them travelling lower than in normal use. This prevents damage to the seals in the master cylinders. Keep flushing each line in sequence until perfectly clean fluid is released and do not over tighten any bleed nipple as they will shear off - also before you try to slacken any brake nipple give it a good soaking in release agent.

Tip with the gearbox is to make sure you can remove the filler plug before you drain it of old oil, that said you can remove the tower and fill through there just get the quantity of oil right if doing it this way. Always buy your gearbox oil from Audi.
Thanks for info, good advice on audi for gearbox oil. The brake fluid is like medium green-dark green? Is that good-bad?
 

audifan

A2OC Donor
BAD. That colour of brake fluid in known as Shrek Pi55 and is contaminated. The fluid starts life a pale golden yellow and as it gains contaminates it turns shades of green. I have seen worse but will go along way to helping the brakes and hopefully the clutch. Whether it improves the gearbox only time will tell. Please have the brake fluid flushed and the gearbox oil changed as soon as possible.
 

dj_efk

A2OC Donor
That does sound ideal tbh, it's just not original and I feel obliged to keep it as original as I can, part of the charm for me is its buzzy bee character and I like its little faults etc. Maybe I need another atl to tune up and customise! It's like golf gti mk2, the most valuable prized ones are now the original ones. Mrs won't let me buy another and I've got a good one so trapped by my own stubbornness!!
The six speed does not feel like a modification once done properly. You gain a lot of refinement above 60mph without losing any character and anyone who doesn’t know about A2s would never guess the car didn’t come as a six speed from the factory - That alone speaks volumes about what an immense improvement to the usability and character of the car it is.
 

audifan

A2OC Donor
IF a replacement gearbox is the fix then I fully agree with David that replacing the 5 speed with the 6 speed box is very much the sensible thing to do. Lets hope you do not need to but that is the way to go.
 

TAABVW

Member
That does sound ideal tbh, it's just not original and I feel obliged to keep it as original as I can, part of the charm for me is its buzzy bee character and I like its little faults etc. Maybe I need another atl to tune up and customise! It's like golf gti mk2, the most valuable prized ones are now the original ones. Mrs won't let me buy another and I've got a good one so trapped by my own stubbornness!!
I have an GRJ (ATL) gearbox in my garage that I removed when I installed an MYP a few months ago. Nothing wrong with it as far as I know 132k miles. I was keeping it in case I needed it for one of my other 90's but given the success of my MYP conversion I would probably get another six speed in that event. You could take it initially for free and if you still had the whine after fitting (ie it was not the gearbox) then you could just give me your other gearbox back. That way you could rule out the gearbox for only the cost of fitting. If it cures your whine and you're happy with it then perhaps a modest fee would be in order.

Trevor
 

CrispyEdd

Member
I have an GRJ (ATL) gearbox in my garage that I removed when I installed an MYP a few months ago. Nothing wrong with it as far as I know 132k miles. I was keeping it in case I needed it for one of my other 90's but given the success of my MYP conversion I would probably get another six speed in that event. You could take it initially for free and if you still had the whine after fitting (ie it was not the gearbox) then you could just give me your other gearbox back. That way you could rule out the gearbox for only the cost of fitting. If it cures your whine and you're happy with it then perhaps a modest fee would be in order.

Trevor
Wow trevor I am blown away by this generous offer!! OKay I will do the fluids chnages and see what happens and then go from there. I can tell form feeedback that 6 speed is definately worth doing, its a tough one for me to decide but I still think I would like 5 speed to keep it as intended, maybe I need another tdi to pay aorund with!! IMpresse dyou have more than one 90bhp engine, they are such a good drive.
 

TAABVW

Member
I have three kids coming up to driving age and would like to give them a car each when they pass their test. Of course I have to treat them all equally hence 3 tdi 90's. I would go for the 6 speed if you do motorway driving but I'm not here to convince you, I understand your reasons. I will probably keep my 67k miler stock for the same reasons. GRJ safe in the garage going nowhere so open offer if the time comes.

Trevor
 

philward

A2OC Donor
My advice is take the box that is on offer. I get the impression from the description that it is known good. The last time I had a VAG box that whined in higher gears the bearings were breaking down and it required a full rebuild.
 

CrispyEdd

Member
Thank you so much guys some really good advice and info, Ill think about the options and of rebuild vs box change from trevor there and I will follow up. Great stuff. 3 x 90s wow thats so cool!
 
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