P1296 or ABS ECU or Steering Wheel Squib / Angle sensor?

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#1
Torque says P1296
Specialist garage says ABS ECU is the fault.
Thoughts?
Also what chances the jump start from the breakdown services tried the abs ecu?
 

billr

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#2
Wow, give us some kind of clue: what make/year/model is this?

Regardless, that P1296 seems to be related to the cooling system; nothing to do with the ABS or steering wheel. ECU? Possibly, but not likely.

Personally, I think there is little chance of a jump-start hurting the electronics, unless somebody used a much higher voltage source than 12V. Reversed polarity is the commonly blamed bogeyman, but it is a trivial matter to have protection from that built-in to every electronic circuit and I have never seen an automotive circuit that didn't have such. (Talking only about things that could be damaged by reverse polarity). Specifically, I have seen several ECUs exposed to reverse polarity, even done it myself, with no damage. Note that most jump starts leave cables connected to the "bad" battery and put the jump source in parallel with the car battery. Reversing cables like that can cause plenty of sparking as the cables are connected, but little else other than heating of the jump cable or its connectors. If, however, the cables were removed from the car battery when jumping, then there is a chance the two batteries were in series and delivering 24V, a possible problem. Still not too likely, though.

You need to clarify what is going on here, I am out of guesses...
 

nickb2

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#4
@billr, funny thing this week, 6 cars on towing, etc, all got huge amp fuses blown cuz of reverse jumping.

Safe to say, I told the guy who was buying these cars at auction to fire the idiot with the jumper pack.

Take the damn thing out of his hands, he just cost you over 3grand in fuses, towing and scanner shyte.
 

nickb2

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#5
First, a BMW 7hundred series, main fuse blown, next, a mini cooper, same thing, main fuse blown. Next, an acura, with a 3.5l, main fuse blown. Next, a lexus with a 2.5l, main fuse blown. At this point, I am on the phone with the owner of the used car lot, saying fire the idiot that is frying all the components.
 
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#6
This particular model is a Summer 2001 Audi TT Mk1 convertible, 180 bhp.
Torque says there's a fault P1296.
First Garage said the issue was the steering wheel sensor - Torque does show the car thinks it's on a 35 degree downhill slope when it's on the flat - but Torque doesn't report that as a fault?
Second garage saw the same but said they suspected it was the control module as they'd seen this sort of thing before. Recommneded I went to a specialist with specialist diagnostics kit.
The specialist told me the root cause was the ABS ECU And that replacing that 'may' fix the other reported issues - but in any event, they said the ABS ECU would definitely need to be replaced.
Torque does tell me the engine is not at operating temperature - but not whether too high or too low - I guess this is in line with P1296 - cooling system problem.
So I guess I'm wondering whether Toque Pro (the version I have on android) would tell me there was an issue with the ABS ECU, or whether it only gets as far as a possible cooling system issue and doesn't report steering wheel angle sensor or ABS ECU issues?
 

nickb2

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#7
Ok, now that we have a bit more info, I will attempt to answer.

This is a manufacturer specific code. My alldata does not provide info for this particular model, but I have come across this often. Try a few simple things first.

Get engine up to temp, see if the thermostat opens. Next, wait for fan to come on. In many cases on these volk/audi models, all same wiring and same garbage relay wiring, look for corrosion on the relay pin contacts. But if you have enough coolant, and fan does come on, suspect a bad thermostat. May not be opening and closing as it used to, and that is f-ing with the ECU's algorythm.

That would be the cheapest route to try to get this code to go away.

The ECU algorythm is very specific in regards to coolant system performance. So just doing a routine maintenance of the cooling system may get rid of that code. Also, you need to verify the ECT sensor vs what the dash is indicating.

Since I know you are using a elm 327 dongle, with torque pro, it is quite valuable info to have, but I don't think it actually measures (if my memory is correct) all THREE temp sensors. One is for the gauge, one is for the computer, the other is for the rad fan. Like I worte before, this is mostly from memory. Some models differ. If you could, try to get me the specific engine code. Alldata shows three possible 1.8l turbos for this car. AMU, ATC or AWP. Which one do you have? Some differences may exist for diagnostic purposes.

To check all three at same time, the torque pro software cannot do that. You will need a VAG scanner or similar, something like an autel scanner will copy cat the OEM scanner. Other scanners also have some copy cat features, but I find the autel maxysys has the most similar, as it reads block values. It also has a function where you can change certain block values, which is a very nice feature in instances such as reflashing certain modules.

I don't know why that guy told you that you needed a new ABS ecu. I would need more info for that to confirm his conclusion. What diagnostic procedure did he follow to get that would be a nice conclusion to my question. If you don't have an answer to that, not really important, as I like a challenge and will continue to help you, again, if you want.

If you can't find a VAG capable scanner, you will need to pull out the multimeter and read resistance of ECT sensors.

Here are a few snapshots of what I can find to try to help you with that limited, but yet valuable data torque pro is giving you.

Hope they help.

Screenshot (2).png Screenshot (1).png Screenshot (3).png Screenshot (4).png
 
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nickb2

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#8
As you will see in the first snapshot, if you are getting data on scanner, but cluster is not indicating, you need to check wiring first. I have replaced a few clusters in my time on jettas, and this audi TT is basically just a glorified golf/jetta/bettle. So the basic diagnostic procedures apply. But before condemning the cluster to garbage, you really need to check sensors and wiring first.

Look for any shorts to ground, open or even a short to voltage, (which is very rare) which may have shorted out the cluster. That is a hint BTW.

;)

As for your second question in your second post, NO, the torque pro will not provide ABS data. So if the first specialist got a steering angle code, that means he got that with a good scanner that goes to chassis and body systems. It would be helpful if you could post what that chassis code was.

Sometimes, an engine malfunction code will interfere with the ESP/traction/ABS system. These systems are often not at fault and will go away once you have addressed the engine code.;)

If however you do need to replace the steering angle sensor, be sure to follow procedure as this involves f-ing with the airbag. Of note, I have seen cars like this, such as benz and BMW and volks/audis with alignment out so bad, they coded a bad steering angle sensor when in fact that part of the system was fine. So be sure you have true zero on alignment, not providing false data to the ESP system. You probably knew that, but I am just saying that in case someone else falls on this thread for answers.
 

nickb2

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#9
Also of note, you can try to use your elm 327 to calibrate the SAS (steering angle sensor) with the right software, which torque cannot do. You could try palmer performance software, or forscan software. I think I saw that on google somewhere. I have not done that yet with my elm's, since I use high end scanners, and own my own elm stuff and have dabbled in arduino hardware, but only use the elm when I don't want to pull out my high end stuff.

I know that may sound condescending, but I assure you I am not. I just have a hard time writing in english since it is not my first language, but usually, I am pretty good at getting the message across.

Of note, if you do learn how to use the elm with arduino, you would be amazed at what you can do with a europe car like yours. Anything from remapping the ECU, to changing the color of your dash. You could even change the block values for that pesky ect code and fool the ecu, but that is a long way from now if you don't know what I am talking about. But if you do, you then know it is possible. Basically, you are using the elm 327 as a bidirectional scanner by bypassing the software. But you need to learn coding for that.

I am still in the learning curve on that one, so I don't really want to reach my neck out on that one, but I will try to help you, if you want.

But I assure you, I do know what I am doing when it comes to cars like this, and if you provide info to my simple questions, step by step, we will come to a conclusion.

And all the other guy's here also have a wealth of knowledge that will surprise you. So stick with it, be patient, and you will get joy.