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Volkswagen Beetle Maintenance and Repair

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Comments

  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    I am assuming you have a Gulf (since you refered to a "hatch")

    I had to disassemble and lubricate the latch on the hatch of my daughters Gulf a couple years ago. As I recall, I had to open the hatch and remove the trim from the inside to gain access to the latch mechinism.

    Once it is apart, you can follow the wires to the microSwitch which acts as the sensor. I dont recall if the uSwitch was in the latch or not.
  • No, I have a 2003 Beetle.
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    Whoops - my bad.... this is a Beetle forum. I should have known better. (I follow all the VW forums and I was not paying attention)

    In any case, I would be very surprised if the design is much different from the Gulf. The Gulf, Beetle and Jetta are all built on the same basic platform.
  • 99buggy99buggy Posts: 7
    I have had to fix about 10 things on the car already. It still has bad radiator fans. Problem is, I don't believe it will run after that job. What should I do? I got myself an accord at a very good price, so all I want to know is about my options. Should I part it out, junk it, push it over a cliff and walk away? Or should I get it to yet another mechanic and see how to fix it?

    Things I have to change: heater core, timing belt, coolant leak, oil leak, alternator bearing, serp belt that burnt away because of the alternator bearing...
  • orbit9090orbit9090 Posts: 110
    NEWS: Volkswagen recalls nearly 800,000 cars

    Defective brake lights on Golf, GTI, Jetta, New Beetle and R32 are a potential safety hazard and should be replaced.

    February 26, 2007 - Around 800,000 Volkswagen vehicles have been recalled Monday because of faulty brake lights, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration said.

    The 790,000 vehicles include Jettas, New Beetles, Golfs, GTIs and R32s...all in the United States.

    The specific years and models affected are:

    1999-2005 Jetta sedans
    2001-2005 Jetta wagons
    1998-2007 New Beetle
    2003-2007 New Beetle Convertibles
    1999-2006 Golfs and GTIs
    2004 R32
    The malfunctioning brake lights and brake light switches could fail to come on or remain stuck on.

    This recall expands on one announced by the carmaker last year, when 362,000 Jettas and New Beetles were recalled due to the same defective part.

    Gees.
  • orbit9090orbit9090 Posts: 110
    ...I would be very surprised if the design is much different from the Gulf. The Gulf, Beetle and Jetta are all built on the same basic platform.

    Uh...no the Gulf is not. However, the "Golf" is.
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    Please do not post the very same thing in multiple forums. Many of us are tracking ALL of the VW forums and have to read thru it multiple times.

    Besides , this is ooolllddd news.... Anyone that has properly registerd their VW with VWOA will have already received their recall notice by now anyway.
  • wanwanwanwan Posts: 2
    Hello, it seems that there are many technical/mechanical problems with Beetles :cry: . What about for the new cars with warranty? Is that a problem then? If that still is, what about paying the insurance options with all the highest coverage?

    I really like beetles, but also don't know much about how to maintain a car. Please give me some suggestions! I really appreciate!
  • oldbugoldbug Posts: 11
    Back in the 60's most cars were still simple enough for just about anyone that could turn a wrench to do most of the work needed; grease, oil, and filter change, wheel bearing repack, tie rod ends, exhaust & etc. New cars today are so technical that most of the work has to be done by propriotory mechanics trained by the manufacturer. For good reason I think! If everyone of us that came from the do it yourself generation of car owners tried to keep up on the technical aspects of repairing a car today, we'd be going to school during our retirement. There are tons of valuable resources on the web for reference. I always chose a car that I knew I had the expertise to maintain myself. For that reason, I have had fewer off the show floor cars than most people my age. If it was beyond my capabilities i.e. transmission repair or motor ovehaul, I would take it to a proffesional. Get a car that you can comfortably do the expected owner chores on and then take it to a professional for the rest. Always make sure that you observe the maintainence schedule and follow it precisely. New cars with warranty? That's fine as long as you trade the car for another before the warranty dies of old age. If your financial situation allows you to do that you may have nothing to worry about. I personally don't know many people that can keep buying new cars every two to three years. I don't know that Beetle have any more or less problems than any other model. The point is, if you are not comfortable accepting what comes with a used car, then by all means buy new ones with warranty.
  • I bought my 03 Beetle used w/38,000 miles in May of 2006. within 2 months, had sensor light go bad, window motor go bad, then,replaced front and rear brakes (rotors and pads) and new tires. I now have 87,000 miles so just had the timing belt,water pump tensioner, spark plugs and trans flushed to the tune of $600.00. Since this was done 1 week ago, the car feels like it is not accelerating easily and stalled on me coming off the highway today. I called the repair shop about this problem I didn't have before bringing to them, he claims nothing wrong w/ timing, probably a fuel pump/filter and he'll have to look at it. I can't trust the dealerships as they don't know anything,can't trust this repair shop and can't get any info from VW, I have spent over $2000 in just over 1 year and am worried. Any body out there can guide me on what to do next? I Drive 100-200 miles a day and can't afford this car! Thanks
  • I agree, I thought I was getting a great car, the newest one I've ever owned - 2003 Beetle, and the cutest, but the most expensive! Can't contact VW, the dealerships are clueless except on taking you everytime you come in and the warranty doesn't cover the problems we are all afflicted with.
  • mrrk47mrrk47 Posts: 104
    Okay, it seems like the one of the major functions of carspace is to allow disgruntled owners of newer cars(Beetles and other makes as well) to vent their bad experiences to make those of us who haven't yet encountered problems with cars fear the next tick of odometer as it might be a multiple thousand dollars problem ahead. It seems to me any car if properly maintained( with fair money spent in the process) should last and work well.
    I have just purchase an used 01' NB with 99,000 miles and it seems fine save for a touchy alarm that goes off at night at arour 11 pm. The carfax looked good and the dealership did an inspection and all that jazz....was this purchase a mistake?? I really wanted a Beetle, so I chose to buy for a dealer and was very picking about the one I wanted.......Is someone on here going to tell me that without a doubt there will be a 5,000 repair on the horizon.
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    I sure hope noone is suggesting that!!

    On these forums, you will read mostly BAD experiences from people who are disgruntled in some way. It is human nature to not say anything unless there is a problem. You should read these Edmunds forums whith this in mind.

    VWs are very nice vehicles. VW would have gone out of business loonng ago if they were not. Lets keep things in perspective here.... VWs are sold in nearly every continent of this planet. The NorthAmerican (NA) VW market is MINISCULE compared to the rest of the world.

    ALL vehicles have their share of issues/problems. These very forums are testamant to that fact.

    The bigger problem with VWs here in NA is that decent repair shops are hard to find. There are not a lot of competent VW/Audi technition to be found. The result of this fact is overpriced repairs that may not fix the problem. (and may cause other problems)

    Another thing about VWs (and German cars in general) is that the owners are EXPECTED to follow the maintainance schedules explained in the owners manual.

    As a comparison... many Asian vehicles are designed for owners which generally ignore the maintainance schedules.... (You drive a reliable- but BOORING car)
  • We (my wife) had a 2000 NB that we bought new and put 88K miles on it. The car never really had any problems to speak of. It had a power relay ($30) fail at around 80K. The car was maintained as per the maintenance schedule, by the local dealer. Properly maintaining any vehicle will cost a fair amount of money, but we feel its money well spent. I just traded the car this past May. I needed a pickup truck for the kind of work that I'm doing now and the Beetle just wasn't big enough. My wife has a 2006 NB that we also bought new. Now this vehicle has had some problems, mainly failure of the coil paks. It has had 4 failures in less than 12,000 miles. The dealer has repaired the car to factory specs each time, but obviously there is something wrong with the coils or something is causing them to fail. VW has directed the dealer to replace them each time, I think the dealer has to have authorization before they can repair a repeat problem. The reason that we bought another Beetle was due to the service that we got from the 2000 model. I think the future of the 06 NB will be determined by a court of law, since VW and I have a difference of opinion about the reliability of this vehicle.
  • I have the same exact problem and thought I was crazy. I have just had the cat. converter replaced as the wrong one was put in. For a week it ran great and we didn't think this was the problem anyway. But yesterday it did it twice to me. The dealership thinks it may be the ignition reader coil which will be my next step. It also could be related to the fact that my unauthorized key entry light comes on sometimes when I am having start problems. This has been going on for a year now. Let me know if this helps.
  • mrrk47mrrk47 Posts: 104
    Thanks to the two posters who responded to my rant. I agree with the human nature thing and everything. I think the NB I got has been taken care very well, I plan to take this car up to 200,000 miles before it's done, with a mild investment it should happen.
  • eliaselias Posts: 1,916
    hey there beck. at 200 miles per day the car should be costing about $100 per day... about 50 cents per mile - maybe a bit less - check the "TCO" pages. so if you drive only weekdays, that's 52000 miles per year. so it ought to cost you about $25k per year to operate. maybe $20k. including insurance/depreciation/everything...
    the car should never stall like that of course. something is rotten if it stalls and you are right to suspect the previous service. dealer would have charged a lot more than $600 for that work, i bet.
  • mrrk47mrrk47 Posts: 104
    I know there have been a few threads about randomly sounding alarms on 2001 beetles..well.. I have one. My 2001 GLS 2.0 with 99,000 that I have only had for a little over a week sounds the alarm at nighttime or dusk only!
    I can have it armed all day at work, then take it home at night and about 6pm or so it goes off, I can shut it off by pressing the unlock button on the remote, but a while later it may go off again. I just took it to the dealer for 2 days and they thought it was some wiring issue to do with the radio, I picked it up and at 5pm it goes off.
    Has anyone had similar problems...please let me know..can I simply have them unhook the alarm all together?
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    you said ... I can shut it off by pressing the unlock button on the remote, but a while later it may go off again.

    Are you suggesting that the alarm will go off again EVEN WHEN IT IS NOT ARMED?? (the doors are unlocked)
  • mrrk47mrrk47 Posts: 104
    No, if I leave it unarmed it will not sound, if I re-arm it after shutting off the alarm it may go off again while armed. Sorry for the confusion..
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    OK- at least that makes some sense.

    I know this much, the alarm will sound if ANY of the following are sensed as being opened.
    *) Hood
    *) Hatch/Trunk
    *) Any Door

    I am suspecting that one of the micro-switches that sense the above may be the culprit. It may be very difficult to isolate the problem. You may have more luck using the process of elimination.

    Since you did not mention that the indicator on dash which shows Doors and Trunk open has not been seen while driving... I am suspecting that the switch on the hoodlatch may be suspect. (because there is no indicator on the dash for it)

    Try this, with alarm set... try to wiggle/jiggle the hood open and see if you can trigger the alarm.

    Another thing you can try is to bypass the hoodswitch with a jumper. Leave jumper in place for several weeks to see if that fixes the problem. The hoodswitch is pretty easy to get at while the other switches are burried inside the body-panels. This is another reason to isolate that one first.
  • eliaselias Posts: 1,916
    in my experience this sort of failure is inevitable with car alarms. you might consider locating out which wire to cut in order to disable the alarm's power forever, and cut it. i've had to do this in the past, but not for a VW.
    (i think car alarms are essentially useless and far more trouble than they are worth).
  • mrrk47mrrk47 Posts: 104
    Hello I'd like ask a few owners of New Beetle's if they or people they know have positve reports and good ownership experiences with this good little cars,....that brings up a question, are they good cars? I understand that these forums are mostly for disgruntled owners who want to share their bad electrical systems, stuck-on headlights, and faulty power windows with the rest of us, but are their Beetle owners out there who have owned one of these for a while and have gotten a good one?
    I just bought an used 2001 GLS,auto that seems to a diamond in the rough...after 400 miles of my use that is. It has 99,000 miles on it and according to the carfax and various records I have has had it's small share of the problems...brakelights, window motor replaced, but that's largely it. It had a radiator replaced at 99,000 miles, but isn't that kind of expected?
    Does a car have to be a Honda or a Toyota to last a long time and provide reliable service? I do read the Toyota forums because I am also a Camry owner and it has had it's share of bad PUB recently, but it still retains that gleeming reputation of great reliability with the public at large.
    Can I expect to get to 150,000 miles or more without a terrible multi thousand dollare repair bill. Thanks for reading my post .
  • I HAVE A 99 BEETLE AND HAVE HAD IT FOR 8 YEARS. I HAVE HAD MANY OF THE PROBLEMS THAT OTHERS HAVE LISTED. I HAVE HAD THE CHECK ENGINE LIGHT COME ON SEVERAL TIMES OVER THE YEARS. WE WERE TOLD BY SEVERAL PEOPLE THAT THIS SOMETIMES HAS SOMETHING TO DO WITH YOUR GAS CAP. THIS ALSO HAPPENS TO MY HUSBAND'S 2001 JEEP. SOMETIMES WE FILL THE JEEP UP TO THE TOP WITH GAS AND THE LIGHT GOES OUT AND ABOUT A FEW WEEKS TO A MONTH MAY GO BY AND IT COMES ON AGAIN AND OFF AGAIN. MY LIGHT CAME ON IN THE BEETLE AFTER I HAD THE TIMING BELT, WATER PUMP REPLACED. MY HUSBAND NOTICED THE OIL FILTER WAS LOOSE AND TIGHTENED IT AND IT WENT OFF AND THEN CAME BACK ON AGAIN ABOUT A WEEK LATER. HE FOUND OUT THAT THE TEMPERATURE SENSOR WAS UNPLUGGED AND HE PLUGGED THAT BACK IN BUT THE LIGHT IS STILL ON. MY CAR IS NOW PAST INSPECTION AND WE ARE TRYING TO GET THE LIGHT TO GO OUT. ANY IDEAS? THANKS MUCH!
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    I have gone over 150K miles out of at least 4 VWs over the years.... your milage may vary.

    I can tell you that each of my daughters and myself have VWs and would not even consider anything else.

    With the new 140HP TDI coming out in 2008... why would ANYONE consider a car that gets less than 45MPG?

    Among comparable models, VWs consistantly has better-quality features, attention to details and that German roadcar handling not available anywhere else. Many folks forget that VWs are essentually Audis at a lower price-point.

    With VW, you get things like 4-wheel disk brakes and indipendant suspension and antiroll bars that actually do somthing for you. For grins, I just went online and compared my 2003 VW to brand-spanking new 2008 Honda and Toyota models.... It is my VW which gets better MPG and has more features. I think I will keep my TDI for awhile longer. (like 200K miles)

    As for predicting repair-bills - any vehicle on the planet is a crapshoot... but at least with VW, you are starting with high-quality components and great engineering.
  • I have researched dozens of tires, trying to find the best deal on tires that would improve the ride and safety of my car, making sure to buy tires that would address performance. I do not live in an area where snow and ice are issues; however durability and traction against wet and bumpy roads are major priorities.
    I decided to choose either the Michelin Pilot Sport AS (around $180) or the Michelin Pilot Exalto AS (around $165). Both gave exemplary reviews from VW owners, including the GTR. None were from Beetle Turbo S owners, so was I curious if anyone, esp turboS drivers, had any good advice. I know these tires are pricey but improvements on ride, performance, and traction from the original tires is of utmost importance. Any advice would be appreciated.
  • Exactly what is VagCom and how do I use it?? Will it tell me how to fix the problem or just what the problem is?
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    This has been discussed many times already. Have you tried typing "vagcom" into the search box above? You may also wish to visit the Vag com website to get more details.

    One cannot fix a problem until one know exactly what the problem is. The VagCom tool can tell you exactly why the CEL (Check Engine Light) is on Only with that information can you even begin to figure out what to do to resolve the issue.

    You asked for ideas....

    If you do not wish to invest in a VagCom, there are lists on the internet of people that own a VagCom who are willing to scan your car for you. Example of one ==> http://vag-tool.kicks-[non-permissible content removed].net/

    Additionaly, if you had used the search feature, you would have found that it has been discussed many times that some autoparts stores (Autozone?) will scan your car for free and tell you what code is flagging the CEL.

    In any case, you need to know why the CEL is on before moving forward. Once you have the specific code, then you can look it up here

    At that point - you can come back to this forum and tell us the code. We may be able to assist you from there.
  • I love my Beetle and have had it since 1998. I have a few problems, but have reached 110,000 with only a few main issues. My other friends own different models and have as many if not more issues so I haven't thought too much of it. I've owned VW's for almost 20 years and I can't do not one mechanical fix on them, but the dealer service departments have been very reliable. My most recent issue which I posted but got no response was that my driver's seat broke. The mechanism that holds it in place came loose and the seat flew back. No explanation for that, but otherwise I'm a happy owner and would buy another Beetle.
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