We're going to show you how to move the carrier into the service position on a B5 Audi A4. The carrier is an assembly in the front of the car that supports the radiator, fan, headlights, etc. The most common reason for moving it out of the way is to perform the timing belt service. You have two options when it comes to the carrier - you can slide it back a few inches giving you a little more room to work with - this is what Audi calls the "service position". However, with a little more work you can actually swing the whole carrier out of the way giving you all the space you will need. Keep in mind that this was written for the 2.8L V6 engine so there may be a few minor differences if you are performing the steps on a 1.8L engine. Let's begin.
1. Start by removing the front bumper. If you need a refresher, visit the Audi A4 B5 Front Bumper Removal page for instructions.
2. On the top of the carrier, remove the screws that secure the air intake duct. Also remove the two torx bolts on the side. Do the same for the other side of the carrier.
3. If you are swinging the carrier out of the way, disconnect the electrical wires on the passenger side. There is a torx bolt that secures the fender - remove it. Also remove the big torx bolts that hold the shock absorber. AC hoses stay where they are.
4. Now that all of the bolts have been removed you will want to provide some support for the carrier. Grab the allen bolts that you took from the bumper and screw them in as shown in the photo below. This will allow you to slide the carrier forward while you work to disconnect other parts. Lastly, take a look at the bottom of the radiator. See that air temperature sensor? Well there used to be a power steering cooler there too. You car will likely still have one so you will need to unmount it from the carrier. Remove the two 10mm bolts and move the cooler aside.
5. Located on the passenger side, is a cooling duct for the alternator. Remove the torx screw that secures it to the carrier.
6. Again, if you plan to swing the carrier out of the way, disconnect the electrical wires from the headlight assembly - no need to remove the headlight.
7. Remove the turn signal socket by rotating and pulling it out with the bulb.
8. Remove the hood release cable - pry it out and set it out of the way.
9. Drain the coolant from the radiator by rotating the red screw.
10. With the coolant drained, remove the top coolant hose. It is a quick disconnect hose so grab a screw driver and pull the clip up. All you have to do then is pull the hose out. NOTE: it takes a lot of force to get that hose out. Finally, disconnect the wires for the hood switch.
11. You can now start pulling the carrier forward, starting with the driver side. As you pull forward, remember to unclip the electrical cables.
12. Disconnect the coolant sensor.
13. You should now have enough room to disconnect the bottom coolant hose, located on the passenger side of the car.
14. Finally you can swing the lock carrier out of the way. Take extra care not to damage the AC hoses that are still attached to the carrier.