It’s time once again for a 2.0L TSI Audi engine tip. Audi and VW drivers who own models that are 2008 or newer are quite familiar with the 2.0L Turbo Straight Injection (TSI) 4-cylinder engine. These engines were designed to produce as much power as possible with as little displacement as possible.
The 2.0L TSI is a well-built engine for the most part. It’s able to generate the feel of a 6-cylinder and 200 horsepower with much better fuel economy. But there is one major setback. These engines have a timing chain that can cause serious problems.
At German Auto Center we have had many customers come in for complete engine rebuilds because the timing chain tensioner collapsed. This happens when the timing chain gets “stretched” (up to 2 inches), which causes the chain to jump and bend all the valves. Once this happens the engine is essentially destroyed.
So what causes this engine-killer stretching of the timing chain? Dirty oil. Many drivers are unaware that spent oil that isn’t providing lubrication can cause the rollers on the timing chain to wear faster. When timing chain rollers experience wear that is when the “stretching” effect happens.
The problem is so common we’re starting to see 1-2 Audis a week that require major engine repair. It’s an issue that typically occurs around the 60,000 mile mark – right after the warranty has run out.
The Recommended Fix for 2.0L TSI Timing Chains
Fortunately, the fix is a fairly easy one. Instead of following Audi’s recommendation of changing the oil every 20,000 miles (after the first five), do so a lot sooner. After repeatedly dealing with timing chain issues, our techs now recommend that you change your oil every 5,000 miles. It’s also best to use a product like full Mobile 1 synthetic oil.
This frequency, along with high-quality oil and filters, will keep your oil clean so that issues with your timing chain and tensioner are avoided. Dirty oil also causes a truckload of other engine problems so this kind of maintenance is worth the investment.
You’ll pay a little extra for more frequent oil changes, but you’ll save thousands by avoiding an engine catastrophe that sidelines your vehicle.