Author Topic: Missing Bellypan  (Read 2326 times)

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verc

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Missing Bellypan
« on: August 17, 2006, 02:35:27 PM »
So I was driving along E-470 a few days ago when I heard a bump from under my car.  I looked in the rear view mirror to see if I hit something but at highway speeds I didn't see anything.  I continued on for about a mile when I heard a louder bump and a constant scraping sound.  I again looked in the rear view and saw a large black object fly out the back of my car.  From the look and the sound of scraping I thought I had lost a tire and was driving on the rim, so I pulled over slowly and got off the road as far as I could to avoid all the cars coming by at 80+ mph.  A quick scan showed the tires to be fine but a small metal bracket was bent and hanging straight down from under the engine.  I had to get the jack out to raise the car enough to bend this bracket so it wasn't rubbing the ground.  I also noticed the belly pan was missing and a small cable was severed.

Here are my questions,

1) Does anyone know what the cable is that goes though the engine bay and plugs into the bottom of the engine? (No check engine light ever came on and the car seems to operate jsut fine)

2) Does anyone know of a good place to get a new belly pan and approximately what it will cost?  It seems to be a fairly simple repair except for rewiring the severed cable

3) Short-term, am I risking anything by continuing to drive with out that cable, presumably attached to some sort of sensor?
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aowhaus

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Re: Missing Bellypan
« Reply #1 on: August 17, 2006, 03:06:03 PM »
check the oil sensor (it's the 2"-3" round black module on the bottom of the oil pan).

The Passat (I assume you have a Passat) bellypan is pretty expensive ($200-250), but interesting enough the bellypan for the W8 Passats are better designed and made and costs a fraction of the OEM 1.8T/V6 ones, and is a direct fit.
The plastic bellypans have always been a very fragile and poorly designed (I've gone through 3 already), so you may even want to consider spending a little more and invest in an aftermarket metal or carbon fiber belly pan.
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Re: Missing Bellypan
« Reply #1 on: August 17, 2006, 03:06:03 PM »

Lila

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Re: Missing Bellypan
« Reply #2 on: August 17, 2006, 03:37:38 PM »
I might have a spare (used) oil sensor in the garage.  I kept the old one after a similar incident.  I think it works, but I cannot be sure.  My wife took the car to the nearest dealership (serious oil leak required immediate attention) to repair the cracked aluminum oil pan after an incident where the belly pan fell off, and then scooped up a rock from the pavement, and cracked the oil pan (and presumably damaged the oil sensor, but maybe not).

Also, I've been driving for a couple of years without the belly pan.  Maybe someone should convince me why I need it?  So far experience has proven otherwise....

92UrS4

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Re: Missing Bellypan
« Reply #3 on: August 17, 2006, 03:42:14 PM »
REally th blley pan is there to protect and that's it. If you hit up PW there are some good stories. I think one guy rolled without a BP for awhile and hot a raccoon, set him back a few $G's in repairs.

Meaning, $250 belly pan replacement or a potential for very expsensive repairs if you hit something that rips a bunch of crap out of the underside.

Most belly pan losses are due to dealers and shops. If you take the car in to be serviced (oil change or what not) and they ahve to remove the belly pan. These guys tend to lose the screws or they don't lock them in properly so after x many miles of rattling they pop free and eventually you lose the belly pan.

Some folks after a few bad experiences started removing their pans prior to service so they would ensure a proper re-installation. Seems like a lot of effort to me. I would just check it either before you leave the shop or as soon as oyu get home.

Lila

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Re: Missing Bellypan
« Reply #4 on: August 17, 2006, 04:42:58 PM »
How do I get my hands on the W8 belly pan?  How much does that cost?

92UrS4

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Re: Missing Bellypan
« Reply #5 on: August 17, 2006, 04:57:37 PM »
I think Randy can get a hold of most OEM parts, if not the dealer or another online OEM parts vendor.

verc

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Re: Missing Bellypan
« Reply #6 on: August 17, 2006, 05:15:58 PM »
FWIW - I did actually have the oil changed about 500 miles prior to losing the belly pan.  However I am not sure I can blame them when you take a look at the scrathes on the bumper and skid plate from coming in and out of my office.

I will probably give Randy a call and try to get the W8 belly pan or maybe even try to do it myself if it doesn't eat into my golf time too much.

Thanks for the help
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gragravar

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Re: Missing Bellypan
« Reply #7 on: August 17, 2006, 06:12:44 PM »
golf time  :roll:

Bring your car on over, we can put it up on the ramps and see if the wires did go to the oil sensor.

I'd second the vote on picking up the W8 belly pan from Randy.
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DenverPat

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Re: Missing Bellypan
« Reply #8 on: August 17, 2006, 08:04:43 PM »
I'd go for the W8 pan if I were in your shoes.
The pan is actually called somthing like a "sound deadener" by Audi.  It is there, according to Audi, to help the car run more quietly.
A friend once measured engine bay temps with the pan on and off.  He measured four different locations in the bay while driving around Second Creek Raceway.  This was in a 2.8 A4.  He found temps to be consistently 20 to 30 degrees cooler with the pan on.
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Lila

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Re: Missing Bellypan
« Reply #9 on: August 17, 2006, 08:31:39 PM »
Pat -- That is interesting, but I don't understand it.  How does the pan reduce engine temperature?  -Mike

DenverPat

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Re: Missing Bellypan
« Reply #10 on: August 17, 2006, 08:57:01 PM »
Engine BAY temps, not temperatures of the block itself.  In turn it would likely help the engine run slightly cooler.  I'm sure not a significant difference, but I guess anything to help dissipate heat in a tuned 1.8T is a good thing.
"Of all the extreme sports I've ever participated in- windsurfing, kite boarding, wake boarding, tow-in surfing and snowboarding- skiing, for me, made everything else easy."
-Chuck Patterson