AUDI A4 2008 B8 / 4.G Owners Manual
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Towing a trailer239
– Check that the ball joint fits tightly in the mounting
fixture (try moving it about to check).
Electrical socket for trailer
– The cable of the towing bracket can be connected to the
socket ⇒page 238, fig. 242.If the safety check is not satisfactory, the ball joint must be fitted
To avoid accidents, the ball joint must meet all the safety require-
ments listed in the safety check. The towing bracket must not be
used if any one of these requirements is not met. If this is the case,
you should contact a qualified workshop.Applies to vehicles: with removable towing bracketRemoving the ball joint
– Take off the cover cap and insert the key ⇒fig. 243 in
the lock on the knob.
– Unlock the ball joint by turning the key clockwise.
– Take hold of the ball joint and pull out the knob in direc-
– Keep hold of the knob and turn it as far as it will go in
– Release the knob. The spring mechanism will remain in
the "ready" position ⇒.
– Pull the ball joint down out of the mounting fixture.
– Then swivel the socket up ⇒fig. 244 as far as it will go.
The mounting fixture will be closed automatically.
– Put away the ball joint attachment under the floor panel
in the luggage compartment.
Make sure that the socket unit has closed off the mounting fixture
of the towing bracket properly. Otherwise the ball joint may fail to
engage securely if dirt accumulates in the mounting fixture.
Fig. 243 Removable
Removing the ball joint
Fig. 244 Area below
rear bumper: Folding
up the socketA8
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Towing a trailer 240Applies to vehicles: with towing bracketTowing bracket (retrofitting)
If required, the vehicle can be retrofitted with a towing
bracket.If a towing bracket is to be fitted after the car is purchased, this must
be done according to the instructions of the towing bracket manu-
The securing points, which are marked by an in the illustrations
⇒fig. 245 and ⇒fig. 246, are located under the vehicle.
Audi dealers are familiar with the method of installation and any
modifications which may be required for the cooling system.
If a towing bracket is retrofitted, the installation should be
carried out by a qualified workshop.
If the towing bracket is incorrectly fitted, this could cause a
For your own safety, please observe the instructions provided
by the manufacturer of the towing bracket.Caution
If the connector socket is not fitted correctly, this could cause
damage to the vehicle's electrical system.
Fig. 245 Positions of
securing points (side
view)Fig. 246 Positions of
securing points (from
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Towing a trailer241
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Page 245 of 342
243 General maintenance
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Care of vehicle and cleaning 244Care of vehicle and cleaningGeneral notesRegular care helps to maintain the value of the vehicle.Regular and careful care helps to maintain the value of the vehicle.
This may also be one of the requirements for upholding any
warranty claims in the event of corrosion or paint defects.
Audi dealers and specialist retailers carry stocks of suitable car care
products. Please follow the instructions for use on the packaging.
Cleaning products and other materials used for car care can
damage health if misused.
Car care products can contain toxic substances and must
always be kept in a safe place out of reach of children.For the sake of the environment
When purchasing car care products, try to select ones which are
not harmful to the environment.
Surplus cleaning materials should not be disposed of together
with ordinary household waste.
Care of exteriorWa s hi ng t he ve hi c l eThe longer substances like insects, bird droppings, resinous tree
sap, road dirt, industrial deposits, tar, soot or road salt and other
aggressive materials remain on the vehicle, the more damage they do to the paintwork. High temperatures (for instance in strong
sunlight) further intensify the corrosive effect.
After the period when salt is put on the roads it is important to have
the underside of the vehicle washed thoroughly.
Automatic car washes
Before going through a car wash, be sure to take the usual precau-
tions such as closing the windows and sunroof. If the vehicle has
special accessories such as spoilers or a roof carrier or two-way
radio aerial, etc., it is advisable to consult the car wash operator.
It is best to use a car wash without revolving bristles if possible.
Washing your car with a high-pressure cleaner
When cleaning the vehicle with a high-pressure cleaner, always
follow the operating instructions for the equipment. This applies
particularly to the operating pressure and the spraying distance. Do
not hold the spray nozzle too close to soft materials, such as rubber
hoses or seals.
Do not use a nozzle that sprays the water out in a direct stream or
one that has a rotating jet for forcing off dirt.
Washing the car by hand
When washing the car by hand, use plenty of water to soften the dirt
first, and rinse off as well as possible.
Then clean the vehicle with a soft sponge, glove or brush, using only
slight pressure. You should start on the roof and work down. Special
car shampoo should only be used for very persistent dirt.
Rinse the sponge or glove thoroughly and often.
Wheels, sills and similar should be cleaned last. Use a second
sponge for this.
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Care of vehicle and cleaning245
Do not wash the vehicle with the ignition switched on – risk of
Do not clean the underside of the car or inside the wheel arches
without protecting your hands and arms. You may cut yourself on
sharp metal parts.
Take care when washing the car during the winter: moisture
and ice on the brakes may affect braking efficiency – this could
cause an accident.Caution
Do not wash the vehicle in direct sunlight – otherwise the paint
can be damaged.
Do not use insect sponges or abrasive household sponges, etc.
– they can damage the surfaces.
The headlights should only be washed with water – do not wipe
them with a dry cloth or sponge. It is best to use soapy water.
Never wash tyres with a jet that sprays the water out in a direct
stream. This could damage the tyres – even if the spray is kept at a
distance and only used for a very short time.For the sake of the environment
The car should only be washed in special wash bays. This prevents
oily water from getting into the public drains. In some districts,
washing vehicles anywhere else may be prohibited.Waxing and polishingWaxing
Waxing protects the paintwork. It is time to apply a good coat of wax
when water no longer forms droplets and rolls off the clean paint-
work.Even if a wax solution is used regularly in the car wash, it is advis-
able to protect the paint with a coat of wax at least twice a year.
In the summer, you will find it is much easier to remove dead insects
(which accumulate on the bumper and the front of the bonnet) if the
car has been waxed recently.
Polishing is only necessary if the paint has lost its shine, and the
gloss cannot be brought back by putting on wax.
The car must be waxed after polishing if the polish used does not
contain wax compounds to seal the paint.
Matt painted and plastic parts must not be treated with wax or
polish.Ornamental trim and mouldingsThe metal brightwork on the body is made of aluminium rather than
chrome (for environmental reasons).
Dirt or marks on the trim mouldings should be removed with an
acid-free cleaning agent (do not use a chrome cleaner). Body polish
is also unsuitable for use on trim mouldings. The intensive cleaning
fluids often used before the car goes into a car wash may contain
alkaline substances, which can cause dull or milky patches when
they dry out.
Audi dealers carry stocks of cleaning products which have been
tested for use on your vehicle and are not harmful to the
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Care of vehicle and cleaning 246Plastic partsPlastic parts will come clean with regular washing. If this is not suffi-
cient, plastic parts should only be treated with a special solvent-free
plastic cleaning agent. Do not use paint cleaners, polishes or wax on
plastic parts.Paint damageMinor damage to the paint, such as scratches or stone chips, should
be touched up without delay before the metal starts to corrode. Suit-
able touch-up brushes or sprays for your car can be obtained from
an Audi dealer.
The number of the original paint finish on the vehicle is given on the
data sticker ⇒page 321.
If corrosion is already visible it must be thoroughly removed by a
Clear vision is an essential safety factor.The windscreen must not be cleaned with insect remover or wax,
otherwise the windscreen wipers will not function properly
Traces of rubber, oil, grease or silicone can be removed with a
window cleaning solution or a silicone remover. Wax residue can
only be removed with a special cleaner. Your Audi dealer will be able
to provide you with more detailed information.
The windows should also be cleaned on the inside at regular inter-
Use a separate cloth or chamois to dry the windows. Cloths used for
waxing and polishing contain residues that will cause smears on the
Do not use water-repellent coatings on the windscreen. In bad visi-
bility conditions such as light rain, low sun or when driving at
night these coatings can cause increased dazzle, which is a
serious safety hazard. Such coatings can also cause the wiper
blades to judder.
Remove snow and ice from windows and mirrors with a plastic
scraper only. To avoid scratches caused by dirt on the glass, the
scraper should only be pushed in one direction and not moved to
The heating element for the rear window is located on the inner
side of the window. To avoid damaging the heating element, do not
put stickers on the inner side of the window.
Never use warm or hot water to remove snow and ice from
windows and mirrors. This could cause the glass to crack!
Rubber seals (weatherstrips)The weatherstrips will remain pliable and last longer if they are
occasionally treated with a suitable care product (for example sili-
cone spray). This will also prevent premature ageing and leaks. The
doors will be easier to open as well. If they are kept pliable, the door
seals will be less likely to freeze up in the winter.WheelsThe wheels require regular attention to preserve their appearance.
It is important to remove road salt and brake dust by washing the
wheels at regular intervals, otherwise the finish will be impaired.
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Care of vehicle and cleaning247
Technical data After washing, the wheels should only be cleaned with an "acid-
free" cleaning agent for alloy wheels. This is available from Audi
dealers and specialist retailers. Never leave the cleaning agent on
the rims for any longer than specified in the instructions before
rinsing it off. If the wheel cleaner fluid contains acid it can attack the
surfaces of the wheel bolts.
Car polish or other abrasive agents should not be used. If the
protective paint coating is damaged by stone chips etc., the
damaged area should be touched up immediately.
Please note when cleaning the wheels that water, ice and road salt
can impair the effectiveness of the brakes – this can cause an
accident.Care of interiorSound system / MMI* display screen and MMI control console*The display screen can be cleaned with a soft cloth and a special
“LCD cleaner” (available from retailers of electrical goods). Moisten
the cloth with a small amount of the cleaning fluid.
Clean the MMI control console with a fine brush first to prevent any
dirt from getting in between the control buttons and the housing.
We then recommend wiping the MMI control console using a cloth
moistened with washing-up liquid and water.
To avoid scratching the screen, do not wipe the display with a dry
To avoid any possibility of damage, do not let any liquid get
inside the control console.
Plastic parts and leatherettePlastic parts and leatherette can be cleaned with a damp cloth. If
this is not sufficient, plastic parts and leatherette should only be
treated with a special solvent-free plastic cleaner.Textile covers and trim partsTextile covers and trim parts (e.g. seats, door trim) should be
cleaned regularly with a vacuum cleaner. This will remove surface
dirt which could otherwise be rubbed into the textile material
during use. Do not use steam cleaners, as the steam could carry the
dirt deeper into the textile material.
We recommend that you use a soft sponge or lint-free, micro-fibre
cloth for normal cleaning. Only use brushes on floor coverings and
mats, as other textile surfaces could become damaged.
In the case of normal surface dirt you can use a foam cleaner. Use a
sponge to spread the foam on the textile surface and to work it into
the material lightly. However, make sure that the textile material
does not become soaking wet. Then dab off the foam with a dry and
absorbent cloth (e.g. a micro-fibre cloth) and vacuum off any
residue once the surface is completely dry.
Removal of stains
To treat stains caused by spilled drinks (coffee, fruit juice or similar)
make up a solution with a mild detergent for sensitive fabrics and
apply it with a sponge. If the stains are difficult to remove, a
washing paste can be applied directly onto the stain and worked
into the fabric. The surface will then have to be wiped with clear
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Care of vehicle and cleaning 248water to remove any residue left by the paste. To do so, use a damp
cloth or sponge and then dab the stain with an absorbent cloth.
Treat chocolate or make-up stains with a washing paste and then
rinse off with water (using a damp sponge).
A spirit-based cleaner can be used to remove grease, oil, lipstick or
ball point pen. Then dab the dissolved grease or colour particles off
with an absorbent cloth or similar. You may also have to treat the
stain once more using washing paste and water.
If the covers or textile trim panels are badly soiled we recommend
that you have them cleaned by a professional cleaning company.
Please make sure you close any velcro fasteners on your clothing, as
these could otherwise damage the upholstery.Applies to vehicles: with leather upholsteryNatural leather
Audi does everything possible to preserve the special
qualities of leather as a natural product.General notes
We have a wide selection of leathers. The main type used is nappa
in various forms, that is leather with a smooth surface in a selection
The amount of dye used determines the appearance and properties
of leather. If the leather is left in a more natural state, it retains its
typical natural appearance and is pleasant and comfortable for the
seat occupants. Fine veins, healed scars, insect bites, wrinkles and
a subtle variation in shading remain visible; these are the character-
istic features of genuine natural leather.
Natural napped leather does not have a protective surface coating
of dye. It is therefore somewhat more prone to damage. You should bear this in mind if children or pets often travel in the car, or if there
are other factors that could lead to damage.
Types of leather with a coloured surface coating are likely to be
more resistant to damage. This has a great advantage for day-to-day
use. However, this means that the typical natural characteristics of
the surface are less apparent, though this does not affect quality.
Cleaning and care
Because of the natural properties of the specially selected hides
employed, the finished leather has a certain sensitivity to grease
and dirt, etc. so a degree of care is required in everyday use and
when looking after the leather. Dark clothing (especially if damp or
incorrectly dyed) may stain leather upholstery. Dust and grit in the
pores and seams can have an abrasive effect and damage the
surface of the leather. Therefore leather should be cleaned at
regular intervals, depending on the actual amount of use. When
they have been in use for a certain time, your car seats will acquire
a typical and distinctive patina. This is characteristic for real leather
upholstery, and is a sign of genuine quality.
To maintain the value of natural leather you should note the
Avoid exposing leather to direct sunlight for long periods, other-
wise it may tend to lose some of its colour. If the car is left for a
prolonged period in the bright sun, it is best to cover the leather.
Sharp-edged objects on clothing, such as belts, zip fasteners,
rivets or similar, can also leave permanent scratches and rough
marks on the surface of the leather.Note
Use a suitable impregnating cream with ultra-violet protection at
regular intervals and after cleaning. This cream will nourish and
moisturise the leather, keep it supple and able to breathe. In addi-
tion, it will also help to protect the surface of the leather.
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