Symphony II Problems With Antenna On A4 Cabriolet

What’s made to fail, will fail and what’s designed so bad that it would fail more frequently and cost consumers more. Audi did it again for the antenna cable getting kinked at the trunk hinge, causing antenna cable to break and radio loses its signals. Again, our Cabriolet is 7 year old and 71k miles, when we open/close the trunk or the top, the radio would lose its signals. I can’t stand intermittent problems and I had to fix it.

So, the cables are bent at both ends, bottom and top, many people from the forums have this problem. Let’s look a the design and think logically to see why there are so many failures. Anyhow, the antenna booster unit is mounted on the trunk lid and the cables must be routed up to the trunk, that’s why the problem is the routing of the cables. Let’s open up the trunk lid cover.

***You don’t need to remove the trunk panel to get to the KINKS***

The trunk lid cover

We need to remove the emergency handle, the emergency triangle holder, pull down handle and the latch plastic cover.

T25 to remove the handle

emergency triangle holder 5mm Hex to open triangle holder

philip tip screw driver for handle latch plastic cover - pull out to remove -carefully

Now is the time to remove all the clips surrounding the cover, look at all these clips and figure out how to start, I started from the corner with a pry-bar carefully for the first one, then I used my fingers to snap out one by one slowly and carefully.

The trunk lid cover clips start with the corner clip

unclip others using fingers running along the side unclip others using fingers running along the side

Now we can pull the cover out slowly and carefully when all the clips are off their seats, watch out for the 2 trunk sensors and not to break them in the process by mistake. The white cable is our AM/FM antenna cable

The trunk lid with everything on it the antenna box with 3 coax cables

Up to this point, to fix the kinks on the antenna cables, we don’t really have to go through all this, the only reason we want to do this is to remove the tapes bundling the cables together that cause the friction between the cables and the rubber boot.

Here is the actual problem

the kinks on the antenna cable the kinks on the antenna cable

By looking at the way they routed the cables through the trunk to the trunk lid, there are 2 places that the cable were bent and stretch when the trunk is opened/closed. These tape tidy these cables together cause the friction between the inner rubber boot and the cables which doesn’t allow the cables to slide along the inner boot while being stretched and shrank. I remove these tapes on both top (trunk lid) and bottom (trunk), clean the wires from old tape adhesive then spray them with silicone lubricant. I also use some multipurpose grease inside the boot ends to make sure these wires can slide smoothly.

Now we need to fix these kinks

Looking at the breaks, there are 2 places, we need to cut them at these 2 places, strip the outside (ground) and the inside (signal) since this is coax cable. Solder the 2 center wires together straight, put them side-by-side, I needed my wife to hold it perfectly straight for me to solder them together. After soldering the ground wires together, we found out that the ground wires are not needed and it actually caused the loss of signals, so we leave them out. We found a fuel line rubber tube, we slide them in first to use as heavy duty shrink tubing and guard for the kink, it’s a little big but it’s OK. Make sure the solder joint works by testing the radio to see if all signals are good both AM/FM.

cut at the kinks and strip the coax cable Hold wire straight and solder

tape the solder joint good slide the rubber tube over the solder joint and tape the end

Place the tube inside the boot and push it down push the boot back nice and tight

Test the radio again, close and open the trunk lid a few times, wiggle the boot wires front, back, sides to make sure everything is nice and smooth and WORKING.

make sure the radio reception is good

Cheers,


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