Electrical problem - anyone else had this?

I have an Audi A6 4.2 Avant, '99 model year, and I wondered if anyone could please suggest the source of an electrical problem I'm having...
A couple of days ago I tried to adjust one of the door mirrors (using
the knob between the front seats).
It was quickly apparent that this had been a Bad Idea. Firstly, the mirror didn't move. Secondly, the climate control stopped working, the lights in the centre instrument panel went out, and the DIS stopped showing the outside air temperature, and indicated that there was a failure of the oil temperature & level sensor.
I assumed that a fuse had blown, and consulted the driver's handbook to find out which one it might be. As there didn't seem to be any one fuse that would cause a failure of all these things, I inspected all of them - but none had blown. Clever people who know about cars (i.e: not me) suggested it might be caused by the failure of a relay. I took the car to two Audi dealerships, who laughed patronizingly at my suggested relay-failure diagnosis, and indicated that they *might* be prepared (in a week or two, and if I paid them a few hundred pounds) to look at the car to see what the problem might be.
(To digress: is it only here in the UK that customers are treated with such disdain by Audi dealers, or is it a more widespread problem?)
I have a VAG-COM, which now reports only that there's a failure of the "Outside Air Temp Sensor (G17)" and of the "Sensor for Oil Level/Temperature (G266)". Is it possible that these two components, plus the electric mirrors, have failed simultaneously? Or is there, perhaps, an underlying problem?
Any suggestions as to the source of the problem would be very welcome, and would earn my heartfelt gratitude.
Best wishes,
Peter
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The T44 series had similar problems when wires broke and shorted in the drivers side door hinge (rubber accordion looking thing). This was due to constant flexing over time when the doors were opened. The wires to your mirrors are routed in the same place and may be a similar problem.
This could affect the other systems that went out.
Peter H wrote:

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Many thanks, Tony. I shall have a look later, and report back.
Peter
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Hello, again, Peter.
I just noticed this question from you after checking to see if there were any other comments on the signal flasher problem you helped me with the other day (thanks, again). I don't know if this helps at all, but the answer you received already indicated something remarkably similar to another issue I'm having in that its a wierd combination of things and it seems to come from the left side somehow near the doors. My 2002 A6 simultaneously lost power to the windows, locks, roof, and interior lights (not panel lights) a while back Naturally, the roof was up at the time, too. The dash also warned that the front right and both back doors were open, regardless of whether they were open or closed. Interestingly the doors locked okay from the outside using the remote, but the alarm didn't beep when it did. It did arm it, though, because with the top up, leaving the car any wind around triggered the interior motion sensor, blinking the lights and beeping away (that worked). So it was a bit of a hassle. I didn't have a test light, so I asked a mechanic who had one to run through them with his. Nothing showed up as bad, but he may have missed it. I eventually went through the candidate fuses manually and located one 10a fuse that really was out and everything worked fine after putting a new one in. It's happened several more times and I've been trying to narrow it down to where the possible short might be. So far, I've realized that it's only when someone has been sitting in the back left seat, and I think it's somehow associated doing something to open the door (from either inside or outside) with the engine running. Fuses are cheap, asking the dealer to trace through the whole electrical system would be expensive, and I don't have people in the back that often, so it's more of a nuisance than anything else, but I'll be watching here for any other possible solutions and having folks slide in and out from the right in the meantime..

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Checked the "accordion" (or rather the wires in it) - all OK, unfortunately.
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Peter H wrote:

Here in the U.S., it can happen too. Unless you Know What You Are Talking About (tm), and then their sneering is kept on a short leash.
We call them Stealerships, and the smart ones among us try desperately to avoid them at all costs.
With several hundred pounds, you could test the relay advice yourself. Find the replay and replace it. Cheap, and if it's not bad, you could offer it for sale elsewhere, or keep it as a spare.
Yeah, the dealer attitude and lack of competance really drives away a lot of business here in the U.S.
--
E.P.

1995 UrS6
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Thanks, Ed. The problem I'd have is finding the (possibly) offending relay. I believe there are at least 23 of the things scattered round the car in various inaccessible locations. What I've been trying to find is a guide that lists the relays and their functions - so far without success.
Peter
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Peter H wrote:

I hate to say it, but here goes:
Bentley Manual.
Funny, but in my owner's manual, it says EXACTLY where each relay is. Strange, yes?
Anyway, once you buy the offending relay and Bentley, your couple hundred quid are spent. And it may or may not solve your problem.
I wish I could be more helpful. Or hopeful.
--
E.P.

1995 UrS6
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Not really strange, no. You seem to have mistaken "inaccessible" for "unknown". I know where the relays are, but having to remove half the dashboard first makes access to them difficult. This may be a peculiarity of right-hand-drive cars.
Thanks for your help.
Peter
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Peter H wrote:

!!!?
Robert Bentley and Associates (IIRC) ship anywhere in the world. The manuals are expensive, and LHD-centered. They are EXCEEDINGLY helpful. They can pay for themselves on the first use.

My apologies. I did misread your comments.

Removing the undertray is not complicated, nor difficult. It is a pain, I will agree. And the underhood ones are very easy to access.
IIRC, the ones under the RH carpet (in the footwell there) are the hardest to get to. I suppose you're going to tell me next that this is where that relay is located. Murphy's Law and all. The LH footwell (up under the dash) are quite simple to get at, after the undertray has been removed.

Yes, there is that. That is one UK practice that I'm glad didn't catch on here in the colonies.
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One caution however.. The newer Audi maintenance manuals (through Bentley) are of no help at all when it comes to troubleshooting DTC's. For example, the A3 manual, for any controller that might produce a DTC, says: "With ignition switched off, connect Vehicle Diagnosis, Testing and Information System VAS 5051/5052 select "Vehicle Self Diagnosis" Vehicle Diagnosis, Testing and Information System VAS 5051 / 5052 , connecting and selecting functions ."
So, unless you own or lease a a VAS 5051 or 5052, you'll need VAG-COM.. -- Email reply: please remove one letter from each side of "@" Spammers are Scammers. Exterminate them.
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Doug Warner wrote:

As you say, for the newer cars. A pain in the neck, to be sure.
For Peter's 1999 A6, this seems unlikely.
Good information for people looking to buy new(er), however.
E.P.
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Peter, I looked through my Bentley for useful clues to your situation. The two main categories for the mirrors were "with" or "without" folding mirrors. In looking at both sets the only items that the manual referred to is the switch between the seats and the other item is the controller which it says is 'In a protective box, under the carpeting under the drivers seat". This is from a US version of the manual so....... Both the switch and the controller seem like likely next steps as there wasn't any info on the mirrors themselves (or it didn't jump out at me). In reading your subsequent posts, it sounds like you know where the relays are (yes, annoying to access) and others in the group have offered the 'broken wiring in the door' as a possible problem. If you have the folding mirrors, perhaps that's another wire wear area. GRS

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Glenn Spence wrote:

Glenn,
Thank you very much for doing that - and please accept my apologies for not acknowledging your kindness sooner.
I gave up and contacted the local dealership - a loose connection, which was fixed very quickly.
Many thanks again.
Peter
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