Finding a parking spot in a highly packed parking area is one of the most challenging tasks a driver can experience. In past, you had to eyeball the space where you can squeeze in your car but due to the advanced technology, now many cars including Audi VW Skoda Seat (VAG group) come with parking sensors that beep to tell you how close you are to an object.

If you drive an Audi, VW, Skoda, SEAT then in addition to buzzer beep sound, you will be shown the distance via MMI display also. This audio/visual assistive system is usually referred to as Parking Distance Control (PDC), Optical Parking system (OPS), or Visual Parking Aid in vehicles.

What is Parking Distance Control?

Parking distance control is a driver assistance feature that helps the driver in movement and locating a parking spot as well as warning about any immediate obstacle in the vicinity of vehicle.

How Does It Work?

Parking distance Control system works on the basis of ultrasonic sensors any when any obstacle is detected; driver is immediately warned either visually or acoustically with a buzzer beeping sound. In older models, these sensors were found at rear bumper but in latest models, these sensors are found at both rear and front places. The more ultrasonic rear parking sensors and front parking sensors are spread and installed across the width of vehicle, the more accurate the measurements will be. Almost four parking sensors are installed in rear bumper.

Parking aid system is activated as soon as the reverse gear is engaged. These ultrasonic sensors mounted in bumper emit a package of ultrasound waves in receiving and transmitting modes. These ultrasonic sensors evaluate the signals from reflected by an obstacle (echo) and from neighboring ultrasonic sensors and the digital information transmitted to control unit is calculated to determine the minimum distance. The acoustic distance warning system kicks in at a distance of 160cm and the frequency of the sound signal, i.e. the beeping buzzer sound, changes with decreasing distance to the obstacle. If the distance is less than 20cm, a continuous beep sound starts.

By disengaging reverse gear or exceeding speed of 15km/h, the parking aid is switched off. But this is not the only case when parking sensors stop working. There could be some failure reasons as well.

Why Parking Sensors Stopped Beeping and Working?

PDC Malfunction

There could be several reasons for parking aid chime not working but more or less the problem is a faulty component which in most cases is sound signaling device (buzzer). Some of the causes that are responsible for failure of parking distance control system are:

  • Defective buzzer
  • Defective control unit related to buzzer

If buzzer makes constant sound when parking or shows inaccurate distance between car and the objects, then you’ll need to replace parking distance sensor (PDC) fitted on the bumper.

How to Identify Faulty Parking Aid Chime?

As a part of initial troubleshooting it is advisable to carry out a visual inspection of buzzer for any external damages. If it looks perfectly fine then try your car driving in reverse direction.

Usually when you put gear into reverse and find there is no reversing beep sound, it is a clear telltale sign that Parking distance Control warning buzzer has failed.

Another sign of failure is that sound has gone for good and never came back.

How to Fix It?

Fixing this malfunctioning is easy which you can either do at home as a simple DIY or can bring car to mechanics. When you decide to DIY, you will need to order new spare part PDC warning buzzer which we have got in our shop – links included or you can choose us (xenons4u) to replace the faulty buzzer.

On your Audi, it is located in the rear of the cabin underneath the C-Pillar. Just locate the buzzer sensor, Remove the upper portion of c-Pillar, and lift up the plastic poles by pushing little barbed bits out. Then, disconnect the electrical connector very carefully with the help of a flat screw driver and the rear parking buzzer sensor is removed. Remove the old one and install new buzzer.  The job is done and the buzzer is working again.