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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old 06-29-2009, 11:06 AM Thread Starter
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Oil in the radiator, Oil Cooler?

Hey everyone,
I found oil in my radiator expansion tank about 4 weks ago(quite a lot actually). I immedaitely thought the worst, Head gasket. I brought it to my mechanic and he said there was an issue with the oil coilers on the 2.0 TDI engine and that I shouldn't worry. We replaced the oil cooler, even though the one he removed was actually only manufactured 12 months ago and seemed very new to have failed! The system was flushed 2 or 3 times and I've been careful driving since, only done 500 miles or so. I've also spoken to 2 other mechanics who agreed that the oil cooler was a problem with this engine and I shouldn't worry yet. I was told to expect some oil in the radiator for a few weeks after, as the oily residue from the pipes works its way out into the expansion tank, the highest point in the system. There is still oil in the expansion tank every day and its due to be flushed again this weekend. Has anyone else had this problem? I'm told its common but I can't relax yet with the car. I really don't want to go down the way of removing the head if its not 100% necessary as it could turn into a seriously expensive fix!! The car isn't down in power at all, isn't losing much oil(much more than normal anyway), isn't smoking at all, and theres definitely no water in the engine.
What would you do?
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old 06-29-2009, 04:01 PM
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Some early versions of the 2.0 pd engine suffered from oil passing cylinder head bolts which located in the dowel sleeves.To rectify this a sealant was applied to the thread and new dowels fitted but this also required the cylinder head removal.As for flushing you need to remove the radiator and drain it and remove the thermostat then use a chemical agent to dislodge the oil or good old washing powder.Tip leave the return pipe off the header tank and route it to a container and run the engine until all the oil deposits escape the system whilst topping up with water.Once the oil has all but gone refit the thermostat and address the coolant mix for your needs then recheck periodically.You can pressure test the old oil cooler to confirm its failure to set your mind at rest

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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old 01-29-2016, 03:25 AM
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Hey guys

This sounds similar to me! Love to know if anyone else has experienced this. I have just picked up a 2003 a4 Convertible 1.8t and I absolutely love driving it this summer.

I have just recently discovered that there is a thick brown milkshake looking substance in the coolant overflow tank. There is no milky residue under the oil cap, no milky residue on the dipstick, it is not overheating, and is driving perfectly!

The brown milkshake doesn't smell oily but rather has a peculiar fruity smell????

Does ra anyone have a clue at what could be causing this?
I should add it has only done 117km, has been serviced religiously, and we'll taken care of!
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