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98 Cabriolet top won't open or close

98 Cabriolet top won't open or close

  #1  
Old 06-06-2007, 07:42 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 9
Default 98 Cabriolet top won't open or close

I'm new to the forums. Like what I see so far. Maybe someone has a suggestion.

I bought a 98 cabriolet about a month ago. 104K miles. At first, the top worked fine. Then, it started acting up, and I had tounlock and relockthe trunk several times each time I wanted to open or close the top. Once I got it to work, it worked flawlessly until the next time I unlocked to the trunk. Now, I can't get it to operate at all. When I hit the button to open the top, the back of the top will lift as normal, and the toneau will lift about 3 inches and freeze. No further movement. Also, if I open the top manually, and try to close it, the toneau will lift about 3 inches and stop, but you can still hear the motor churning.

Any suggestions? After dealing with this and several other small issues, I'm starting to regret buying this car over a '98 325i.
 
  #2  
Old 06-07-2007, 10:00 AM
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: Charlotte, NC
Posts: 98
Default RE: 98 Cabriolet top won't open or close

If you search the forum you will find many similar probles for the convertible top. Typically, the wires to the truck break at the flexing points.Remove the liner on the trunk lid to find them. They may be cracked internally and not be totally obvious. There are some pictures on other sites of how to split the bundleand use a meter to test the wires. It is not difficult. Do not be dismayed. Your problem sounds intermittant and that usually means wiring. When the system discovers a failure the topindicator light will blink. I'd be interested to know if it starts blinking right after the back of the top raises. That's when a signal is sent to lock the trunk.
 
  #3  
Old 06-07-2007, 10:20 AM
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Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 9
Default RE: 98 Cabriolet top won't open or close

The top indicator light flashes when I release the top latch(obviously) and put the top down. It will continue to flash as long as the car remains started. This includes driving, parked, anything. If I turn off the car, pull the key from the ignition and restart the car, the light will go out as it should normally.

As you said, I do not see any obvious signs of frayed, split, or broken wiring, but I will look in the forums on how to test. I can see that the hydraulic fluid in the motor is not full. Because from time to time the toneau will lift just a little higher if hold the top button, then release, then hold again, I though maybe this could be a problem, but I am like you in that this seems more like an electrical thing. Thanks.
 
  #4  
Old 06-07-2007, 07:36 PM
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: Charlotte, NC
Posts: 98
Default RE: 98 Cabriolet top won't open or close

This is straight from The New Audi Cabriolet, service training booklet, self study program 221.

A Convertibel Top Indicator Light - K98- in the instrument cluster signals the following:
Steady Light
- During opening and closing operation
- If an opening or closing operation is interrupted by releasing the Convertible Top Switch
Flashing Light
- If faulty input signals or illogical switch signals are received by the Convertible Top Control Module.
- If a DTC is stored in the Convertible Top Control Module.

As you can see, your light is telling you something is wrong or you have a stored code. I have attached a picture of my backup pump. The min and max lines on the reservoir are on a slant as the pump sits on a slant in the car. The picture shows the pump on it's side for clarity. The reservoir is never totally full, and the fluid lines up with the lines. The 13mm bolt in line with my finger is the fill point. I doubt you need fluid unless you have a leak. The fluid is the same as the power steering fluid. Use a mirror and look at it then decide about the fluid issue. I'm still voting on wiring as your pump works. Maybe you have a bad solenoid valve, but the intermittant nature of the problem points the finger at bad wiring. Go to SJMAutotechnik.com and buy the manual I quoted. Best $15 I have spent.
 
  #5  
Old 06-07-2007, 07:39 PM
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: Charlotte, NC
Posts: 98
Default RE: 98 Cabriolet top won't open or close

The attachment did not load as planned. Save it to your desktop and then open it to see the whole thing.
Sorry!
 
  #6  
Old 06-07-2007, 08:02 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 9
Default RE: 98 Cabriolet top won't open or close

I have been searching the forums looking for how to test the wiring with a meter. I've seen too many similar wiring problems on the forums to not look into it. I will check out the website as well. Thanks.
 
  #7  
Old 06-08-2007, 02:43 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 9
Default RE: 98 Cabriolet top won't open or close

Alright. I found the broken wires, on both sides. I spliced back together, and still have the same problem. The toneau won't lift after the roof is in place.
 
  #8  
Old 07-15-2007, 10:14 AM
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Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 10
Default RE: 98 Cabriolet top won't open or close

Did you ever find a resolution to your problem? I believe I am having the same issue. Is it posible to manually retract the top until I find a solution?
 
  #9  
Old 07-17-2007, 07:28 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 9
Default RE: 98 Cabriolet top won't open or close

I have not yet found the problem, although I have eliminated several possibilities. You can manually raise and lower the top in the meantime. The most likely culprit is a broken wiring harness, of which I had two.
 
  #10  
Old 07-31-2007, 06:11 PM
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Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 9
Default RE: 98 Cabriolet top won't open or close

OK,

So a month after I began my journey, I find myself back at the beginning. I had previously found not one, but two broken wiring harnesses at the trunk. After splicing some wires back together, no solution. Here I am a month later, and I have finally gotten the problem diagnosed as........wiring harness losing power. Apparantly, even with the wires spliced, there is another short or break somewhere that I can't find. My question is, Instead of giving up my first born to buy new harnesses from a dealer, is there somewhere online that I can buy these, or how hard is it to make up my own wiring harnasses to replace? Any help would be appreciated.
 

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