Air Shock Might Need Replacing! (Combined Thread, Air Suspension Corrosion Problem) - Page 3 - Club Touareg Forums
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post #21 of 267 Old 01-19-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by diesel4me View Post
the way I understand this problem, from my sailboat experience, is that the problem is two dissimilar metals create an electrical charge. The problem is called electrolysis. The presence of salt, ie road salt would probably make it worse. I've had to deal with this on the boat and it can get expensive. As far as I know, the only way to permanently solve the problem is to have a non-conductive barrier between the two metals. Seems like it was not too well thought out in the planning process. Cheers!
It's actually called galvanic corrosion or corrosion between dissimilar metals. Lots of folks mistakenly call it electrolysis, which is another process. I've run across lots of discussion about this in chassis design and manufacture, such as one of my cars which uses a steel tube chassis with aluminum panels attached by rivets. Same potential issue. You are correct that things like salt can greatly increase the ionic migration that causes the oxidation, and your solution is spot-on as well.

Cheers, John

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post #22 of 267 Old 01-19-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dukegrad98 View Post
It's actually called galvanic corrosion or corrosion between dissimilar metals. Lots of folks mistakenly call it electrolysis, which is another process. I've run across lots of discussion about this in chassis design and manufacture, such as one of my cars which uses a steel tube chassis with aluminum panels attached by rivets. Same potential issue. You are correct that things like salt can greatly increase the ionic migration that causes the oxidation, and your solution is spot-on as well.

Cheers, John
Yes, you're right it is galvanic corrosion. My brain wasn't totally in gear. Thanks for the correction. I believe that electrolysis is when there is a stray current in the water and the weaker metals are attacked first. This why we use sacrificial zincs on the boat. Cheers!

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post #23 of 267 Old 01-19-2010
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Originally Posted by AndrieK View Post
Ha ha, good one Jim...

All Touaregs in SA are sold with a 12 year anti-CORROSION warranty. I would assume this goes for the US vehicles as well.
If you read the fine print the corrosion warranty is against body panel PERFORATION, so until rust eats a hole in it, there is nothing you can do.

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post #24 of 267 Old 01-19-2010
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Confused & Concerned

My intent is not to derail this topic, but this recent issue has raised a concern.

It is my understanding that the 'jack mode' was a safety issue and failure to use it could only cause damage by the vehicle falling off the jack/lift.

However in this thread and others there is the assertion that failure to put the car in jack mode will cause damage because of excessive suspension travel.

Maybe I have that wrong, but if that is the assertion, then how do the air suspension Touaregs survive the rock crawling events where we see the wheel completely off the ground and evidently at the limit of suspension travel?

Like I said, I didn't mean to derail, but as an owner of an air suspension Touareg I'd like to understand the risks of operation.

Thanks!

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post #25 of 267 Old 01-19-2010
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As far as I'm aware "hyperextension" is not the issue, the issue is that if you don't press lock the vehicle tries to re-level itself. This would cause a severe and dangerous situation for obvious reasons if you're trying to jack the vehicle. the LOCK function disables this self leveling....case in point my V8 has steel springs and V10 has air, when I switch over to winter tires (I do this myself) both the steel and air extend the same distance.

It can't hyperextend otherwise the airlines/brakelines and any other connection would snap off every time...there is afterall a brakeline, airline, driveshaft, and steering components (in the case of the front) attached to each corner.

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post #26 of 267 Old 01-19-2010 Thread Starter
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UPDATE!!! Good News, and Some Bad....

Quote:
Originally Posted by AndrieK View Post
The fact that the hose fitting broke (corrosion) is a big concern but I think blaming the tech because he didn't lock the suspension is pushing it a bit. If it is indeed his fault, I'd say it's a pathetic design from VW. While they're at it, tell them to lengthen the hoses to prevent it from happening again...
I'm glad someone said something like this. Makes me feel somewhat better.

As for the pathetic design, it is, or WAS! Read below!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jimbuffalo View Post
The aircanisters are ~1650 apiece and I too was told that the money end (where your hydraulic line snapped) is indeed not a separate part.

As to liability because it broke on the lift...hmmmm...dealer should cut you some slack even if it were a simple coincidence.
I was feeling slightly anxious throughout my work day today, looking at the phone from time to time, in anticipation of how they were faring on my Touareg. The anxiety was based on the what the mechanic had told me and what Jimbuffalo was told(quoted up above) about the air shock canister(whatever its really called) being a complete part with the hose fittings, which I truly did find hard to believe, and what the service manager had told me. He believed that there was some sort of TSB on how to fix it, and that there were indeed parts available from VW just for this issue to replace the fitting ends. $180 VS the $1500-$2000 parts not including labour is a HUGE difference. The mechanic who I suppose was responsible for all this mess, insisted that it couldn't be salvaged period. This was yesterdays news just to recap.

So I got the phone call at 3:00PM today from the service advisor, and guess what?! The manager was right!!! (as was I with my suspicions ) Listen to this very carefully boys! I'll try and quote briefly what was told to me over the phone. The installation of those fittings, to repair whatever had snapped on both those ends proved to be a success!! So this whole you need a new canister air shock thing was BS all along!!!! I knew it! Now here is where it gets really interesting. He went on to say that I will NEVER HAVE THAT PROBLEM AGAIN, and of course I immediately asked for the scientific explanation as to why was that? He said that VW was aware of the bad design(vulnerable to oxidation) problem, and that the new parts they had installed were redesigned. As soon as he said that, I asked what were the differences in design. Now here is where it starts to get weird. He said that my original broken pieces were and I quote EXACTLY,

"yours were some sort of white metal, the the new parts are made of what seems to be brass."

I asked him white kind of metal was the "white metal" and he said that he wasn't sure. Aluminum? Magnesium? All he knew was that the new design was brass coloured. Weird eh? I'm saying weird because Jimbuffalo claims his were brass In any case, the fact of the matter is, mine weren't.

So going back to the phone conversation and now heading to the bad news after the aforementioned good ones. He said that I still could not have my Touareg back today however, due to the fact that it needed to be realigned, and all this after I just did an alignment 1 month ago(at the same place, have a thread on that somewhere with the printout specs) I asked why, and he said because they had TO REMOVE the shock housing canister off the vehicle, in order to successfully install the new fittings. I then asked so how long did it take you(translation: what's the labour costs on all this) and he said 9 hours . At that point, I said what I should have said yesterday to begin with, and started with my A-Z blowout, about how I felt about all this. Bringing my EGG in for a lousy headlight assembly installation, and leaving with my wallet raped. I literally played him my best tune and said that I refused to pay 9 hours labour, and that they better the hell figure something out when they call me back tomorrow after the alignment for me to pick it up. He said that he felt confident that his manager would figure something out for me. We'll see......

So coming back to the "fix" folks. I can't wait to see it with my own eyes tomorrow. Quite frankly, this is very interesting. I'll post up the new part#'s of those new redesigned parts that they claim will be immune to a "next time. ever happening again . I'm also wondering if these new parts were installed in later model Touaregs, and NOT the 2004-2005's? I'll leave it at that until tomorrow..

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post #27 of 267 Old 01-19-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BluReg View Post
My intent is not to derail this topic, but this recent issue has raised a concern.

It is my understanding that the 'jack mode' was a safety issue and failure to use it could only cause damage by the vehicle falling off the jack/lift.

However in this thread and others there is the assertion that failure to put the car in jack mode will cause damage because of excessive suspension travel.

Maybe I have that wrong, but if that is the assertion, then how do the air suspension Touaregs survive the rock crawling events where we see the wheel completely off the ground and evidently at the limit of suspension travel?

Like I said, I didn't mean to derail, but as an owner of an air suspension Touareg I'd like to understand the risks of operation.

Thanks!
I completely understand your concern. In reading the manual (I believe but its not in front of me right now) it mentions locking the suspension at certain points (I think it was high ground clearance requirements) while off roading. In a past life I had an allroad (which I bet is similar in ts design) while changing from summer to winter wheels in my garage on a floor jack I had an unpleasant surprise when the suspension dropped. I quickly put a small hand jack under the suspension (but never read the manual).

The manual clearly states that:
"The jack-up mode must always be switched on when the vehicle is lifted by a floor jack or a workshop lift."

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post #28 of 267 Old 01-20-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by diesel4me View Post
the way I understand this problem, from my sailboat experience, is that the problem is two dissimilar metals create an electrical charge. The problem is called electrolysis. The presence of salt, ie road salt would probably make it worse. I've had to deal with this on the boat and it can get expensive. As far as I know, the only way to permanently solve the problem is to have a non-conductive barrier between the two metals. Seems like it was not too well thought out in the planning process. Cheers!

That's my thinking on the design, too. Lower units on boats use "sacrificial diodes" that are designed to eventually crap out and are easily replaceable. If these Touareg canisters use dissimilar metals, are one piece, then VW engineers should be able to figure out that they'll eventually rot and fall apart....or they should rethink how the canisters can be rehabilitated for "corroded" fittings.

Interestingly, mine flashed the STOP FAULT RUNNING GEAR threat in the MFI and a soapy water spray bottle revealed some air leaking at the connector....OP VW Dude's looked really corroded..enough for it to fall off...yet no report of MFI forewarning him...even on the opposite side where the connector is barely attached.

Something to be on the lookout for as these air-suspended versions roll up the mileage.

My Platinum warranty has me ahead of the game for now, so my story has a happy ending. In another thread, however, a Mitch78 just left the Touareg at the dealership - and drove off in a 2010 Passat - after multiple attempts to address air susp. issues.

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post #29 of 267 Old 01-20-2010
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Question: If VW is willing to admit it was bad design in the first place, why is it up to the customer to pay for both the poorly designed parts and the labour for the repair?

This seems more like a recall issue?

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post #30 of 267 Old 01-20-2010
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NuttinButTDi View Post
Question: If VW is willing to admit it was bad design in the first place, why is it up to the customer to pay for both the poorly designed parts and the labour for the repair?

This seems more like a recall issue?
I don't know about recall legalities, but you make valid points. If these things are sucseptible to corrosion, and - as I was told - only replaced as an entire unit - then I agree. Knowledge of that "design flaw" should be understood "eyes wide open" by any potential customer.

If VWdude's garage was able to fashion a repair - whereas my garage repaired via replacement - then I look forward to sharing that info with my garage. I would have pursued repair if the warranty claim didn't solve my issue.

Still curious though...I hope to learn that these are repairable (my brain says they SHOULD be) whether they are made of aluminum, brass, gold, frankincense or myrrh....

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