9 Common Audi 2.0 TFSI Engine Problems

Petrol, a turbocharger and direct fuel injection. This seems to be the engine recipe all car manufacturers are using these past 5 or so years. Don’t get us wrong, it’s a fun recipe, but it’s also a lot more complex and prone to trouble than petrol cars were 15 years ago.

The Audi 2.0 TFSI engine is following this exact recipe and features all the problems we would expect from a turbocharged petrol engine. Continue reading to find out what those are!

Doing your own research is always a good idea before you decide to purchase a car with a certain engine. You just don’t want to leave things to chance and get an engine that has a lot of problems. Many of these problems are crazy expensive. And that’s why we are here to help you out.

First, we are going to cover the basic Audi 2.0 TFSI engine specs, then we are going to discuss the Audi 2.0 TFSI engine problems and see what troubles this engine the most. So, without further ado, let’s dive into the article.

Basic Audi 2.0 TFSI Engine Specs

First let’s cover some of the specs of the Audi 2.0 TFSI engine. If you didn’t know, this isn’t an Audi engine but a Volkswagen engine.

This means that Audi didn’t develop this engine, but is only using it for their cars. This means that the 2.0 TFSI engine is used in a lot of non-Audi vehicles.

When it comes to the specs of this engine, it is worth noting that this engine is widely known under the codename EA888. There are three different generations of the same engine with some refinements throughout the years.

These variations are the EA888/1, EA888/2, and EA888/3. But the most heavily revised model is the EA888/3, this model offers both port and direct injection and sorts one of the biggest issues with this engine, the carbon buildup.

Nevertheless, here are the specs of the Audi 2.0 TFSI engine.

  • Configuration: four cylinders I-4
  • Displacement: 2.0L
  • Block Material: Cast Iron
  • Cylinder Head Material: Aluminum
  • Cylinder Bore: 82.5 mm
  • Piston Stroke: 92.8 mm
  • Head Design: DOHC
  • Turbocharger: Yes
  • Fuel Injection: Direct injection on older engines, from Gen3 onward, port + direct injection
  • Horsepower: 170 – 310 horsepower
  • Torque: 207 – 280 lb-ft (280 – 380 N-m) @ 1,500 rpm

Common Audi 2.0 TFSI Engine Problems

Common Audi 2.0 TFSI engine problems include:

  • Carbon Buildup
  • Spark Plug & Coil Failures
  • Cam Follower Failures
  • HPFP Failures
  • Fuel Injector Failures
  • Diverter Valve Failures
  • Timing Chain Problems
  • Water Pump Failures
  • High Oil Consumption

We covered the problems, and now that we are familiar with these issues, let’s move on and further elaborate on them. You need to learn when and how these issues appear, as well as how serious these problems are.

This is why we are going to cover the problems and symptoms they develop and the methods of how they are sorted out. So, let’s dive in.

Carbon Buildup

Carbon buildup is probably one of the most serious problems with this engine. And this problem develops mainly due to the fact that the engine is using direct fuel injection. So, what is direct injection, and how does it affect the engine reliability?

Direct injection is a “new” way of injecting fuel that fierst appeared on diesel engines b, butut it was then carried out on to gasoline engines as well.

Fuel is compressed so much that it simply atomizes when injected into the cylinders. And this method improved the efficiency of the engines but created a lot of other issues. Including carbon buildup.

So, these Audi 2.0 TFSI engines are prone to develop carbon buildup on the intake ports. This is due to the fact that fuel doesn’t clean them off like in the years prior to direct injection.

Luckily, on Gen 3 engines this is somewhat less of a problem because these newer 2.0 TFSI engines are using direct injection + port injection. So, the valves are cleaned off.

But on older engines, this is a big problem, and you should do a process called walnut blasting every 60,000 miles (ca. 96,561 km) or so to clean the valves off.

To make sure this doesn’t coke up your engine, make sure you drive the car on longer journeys as well. Similarly to diesel engines, turbocharged petrol engine with direct fuel engine don’t particularly like constant short journeys.

Spark Plug & Coil Failures

Spark plug and coil failures are also common on these engines. In fact, this is a common issue on a lot of modern Volkswagen and Audi engines.

Their ignition coils are not one of the best, they can even break down even if you look at them in the wrong way, if you know what I mean.

This is why whenever you start to experience cylinder misfires on a certain engine cylinder, and you get engine codes that are connected to the ignition coil, the only way around is to replace it.

Replacing all the spark plugs and coils is the best way around if you want to bulletproof the engine. Symptoms of problems with these components include the check engine light, engine misfires, rough idle, and low engine power.

Cam Follower (HPFP & Cam Failure)

These engines also have issues with the cam followers inside the high-pressure fuel pump. So, what are these components and where are they located?

This cam follower is located on the cylinder head, right between the HPFP and the camshaft lobe.

This component resembles a ring with a flat surface on the top. It can wear out and start causing problems.

These problems happen predominantly on the 2.0 FSI engine which is the naturally aspirated version. But they can also appear on the 2.0 TFSI.

Luckily, replacing this follower will solve the problem, in other words, you will not have to replace the whole high-pressure fuel pump.

But if you delay this problem for too long, you can end up damaging the lobe of the camshaft. This will require a new camshaft replacement. So, replace this component every 60,000 km to avoid this type of damage.

Fuel Injector Failures

Fuel injector failures are also common on the 2.0 TFSI engine. This engine as we noted previously is using direct injection.

So, this type of injection requires special injectors. These injectors are high-pressure injectors and are very complex.

They are expensive to replace and for a whole set you back a grand or two. This is why it is really recommended that you are aware of this problem.

Whenever these injectors fail, they can leak fuel in the cylinders or they can end up clogged up. Both these situations can create different scenarios.

If you have a leaky injector, your engine will run rich, while if you have a clogged-up injector, the engine will run lean. Both scenarios are really bad for your engine and require immediate investigation and replacement of these parts.

Diverter Valve Failures

This engine is using something that is called a diverter valve and this component can also be problematic. So, what is a diverter valve?

This valve is a simple solenoid that opens and closes. It is part of the turbocharger system and the valve simply releases boost when the throttle is snapped shut.

So, this component should remain sealed when the car is under boost in order to prevent air leaks in the intercooler system.

What fails in this component is the rubber diaphragm, not the actual valve. And when it fails, you will have issues.

The turbo can over-boost or under-boost, there can be surging under acceleration or a drop in performance.

The solution is to replace the valve and sort out the problem.

Timing Chain Problems

The timing chain of this engine is good but over long use and abuse, this chain can stretch out and start to rattle. Take a look at this resource on 2.0 TFSI timing chain replacement to learn more.

It is not a lifetime chain as many people think. So, it is a very good idea to replace it when it starts to rattle, which is usually somewhere at 150,000 miles.

In some cases, the chain guide and tensioner can also fail and the chain will start to rattle. These noises are a dead giveaway that the engine has to be serviced as soon as possible in order for you to avoid engine failure.

Water Pump Failures

Water pump failures on these engines are also a very common problem. The pumps simply do not last for a very long time.

Whenever they start failing, there will be noise that will be produced by the water pump which is usually followed by coolant leaks.

In some more extreme cases, there can also be overheating issues on your car and if you let the car overheat, you will end up paying a lot of money to replace the head gasket and resurface the cylinder head.

High Oil Consumption

And last but not least is the high oil consumption. Oil consumption is a common thing on these VW engines.

And you can’t even complain since if you go to the dealership they will tell you that everything is normal. So, be prepared for this whenever you get a VW, especially a gas engine.

Which Audi Models Have The Audi 2.0 TFSI engine?

  • Audi A3 2.0 TFSI
  • Audi S3 2.0 TFSI
  • Audi A4 2.0 TFSI
  • Audi A4L 2.0 TFSI
  • Audi A5 2.0 TFSI
  • Audi Q3 2.0 TFSI
  • Audi Q5L 2.0 TFSI
  • Audi TTS 2.0 TFSI


What Are The Common Audi 2.0 TFSI Engine Problems?

Common problems with this engine include carbon buildup on the intake valves, spark plug & coil failures, timing chain stretching, diverter valve failure, injector failure, cam follower failure, and water pump failures.

Is The 2.0 TFSI Engine Reliable?

Yes, this engine is pretty reliable. Even though the carbon buildup in some cases can become a serious problem that can affect the reliability of the whole engine. So, walnut blasting the intake valves is a must on the Gen1 and Gen2 engines.

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