Sascha Molders put Augsburg in front in the fifth minute and Markus Weinzierl's men seemed to be on course for victory without risking too much, the hosts even going close to adding a second thanks to the enterprising Ja-cheol Koo.
But just when they were preparing to pop the corks in celebration, Patrick Herrmann levelled for Lucien Favre's side.
Molders gave the home side an ideal start when he met Kevin Vogt's cross with a header which looped over Marc Andre ter Stegen, who was caught a bit too far off his goalline.
The 30,000 fans inside the Augsburg Arena showed they have not abandoned their side, despite their precarious position, and they were given a rare moment of joy with Molders' goal.
They did not have bite too many nails as an expected retort from Gladbach failed to arrive.
Instead, Tobias Oehrl twice went close to doubling their lead and Molders hit the angle of post and bar with only one side in the game throughout the first 45 minutes.
It was a similar story in the second half with Koo emerging as the home team's dangerman, not only from set pieces, but also from open play.
He also created chances for his team-mates, popping up in all corners of the field to lead Augsburg's push for a second goal and a more relaxing lead.
They did not get one, though, and Mike Hanke and Alvaro Dominguez both drove shots straight at Mohamed Amsif, who had no problems dealing with their efforts.
Those efforts were a prelude to an 85th-minute equaliser from Herrmann, who was in the right place at the right time to lift the ball past Amsif and break the hearts of the home fans.