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Volkswagen Beetle Maintenance and Repair



  • I have a 98 Beetle with 90k on the odometer. I purchased the car a year ago and other than fron brakes and oil changes I have not done any maintenence to the car,. I do not have service records on the vehicle. Is there any service I should do now-timing belt, new plugs. The car runs great and I have no issues at all. Thanks for your help.
  • fish8fish8 Posts: 2,282
    Look at under service or maintenance.
  • zillzzillz Posts: 21
    Is it a 2.0 liter? If so, the timing belt should have been changed at 60K. Then do it again at 120K. At that interval, change out the water pump since the labor is there. I do plugs about every 30K miles or so (96 Golf 2.0, 127,600 miles) I still have original front brakes, but that of course depends on driving habits. I changed the coolant at around 80K and should probably do it again....
  • zillzzillz Posts: 21
    I'm looking into possibly getting a New Beetle to replace my Golf someday, once my wife's SUV is paid off. Also, I always buy used (3-4 years old with around 30-50K miles)....The 4-door Golf is more practical, but what I have noticed is that used Beetles are generally less expensive than comparable Golfs. I realize part of this can be attributed to the fact that VW sells about 3 Beetles to every one Golf. (Here in the States, that is...) However, depending on what you read or who you talk to, it's been said that the New Beetle will be discontinued by 2012 or so. Others say it will be built indefinitely, as long as it sells steadily. Does anybody know which is true? The convertible gave sales of the NB a needed shot in the arm, but is the 2006 redesign the New Beetle's final makeover?
  • I have a 2000 beetle with a problem the dealer cannot fix unless he can reproduce it. Occasionally, the car stalls. I can be just driving along straight or turning or slowing down or not - it stalls; I can immediately restart it. The danger is the change in the power steering and brakes because there is no warning that it is going to stall. Naturally, the likelihood of this problem being reproduced while the dealer has a scanner on the car is very remote. Does anyone have a suggestion or a like experience?
  • prepre Posts: 2
    After removing the wing nut completely, use a flat table knife and pry off the entire housing, starting on side that is looking toward the trunk.
  • For anyone out there who wants to avoid a problem, listen to this. I have finally sold my 1999 NewBeetle. This is the first car I paid for myself and I thought I can handle anything that might be wrong with it, after all, it's a new car, I thought back then.

    I have finally sold the car and I will tell you, I am relieved. This is one of the worst cars I ever had. Everyone I knew with a VW had problems on top of problems, but this one tops it all. I had a BMW, Honda, Buick and a Dodge. It is the last german brand I will ever buy. I will avoid BMW, Mercedes, Audi, Porsche and Mini due to VW. I am absolutely FREEE. No more trouble no more hassle no more dirty hands...

    Ladies and gentlemen, seriously, stay away from VW.
  • I've had the same problem, but not in reverse. I have a 2005 Beetle with 14,000 miles on it. Automatic transmission, 2. whatever not turbo or diesel. Last week and today it has been missing while driving down the road (70 mph). Will seem to go into "neutral", loss of power, doesn't go when you step on gas for a few seconds at a time. Did it long enough today for me to look at tach and see that it doesn't lose rpm's or if you press on the gas while it's doing it, it doesn't gain rpm's either. No movement there at all, but it is slowing down. Will finally "catch" and be okay for a few minutes and then do the same thing again. Tried testing at 60 mph by "stepping into it" and it downshifted from 6 gear to 4 twice, and even at 50 mph downshifted from 6 to 3. Called the dealership last week, they had it in, no trouble codes, couldn't re-create. Called again today to log problem and they still didn't want to do anything without a light coming on or being able to recreate the problem.
    Any suggestions on what it might be?

    Sharon C.
  • I bought a 2006 Volkswagen Beetle TDI in early September. It currently has 2400 miles on it. Last Wednesday, the car would not start. I had it towed to the dealer. The service dept. called later that day and told me that the problem with the car was that there was unleaded fuel in the diesel tank and this was not covered by my warranty and to fix it, it was going to cost $394. That evening, I spoke with the customer service person in the service dept. at the dealer, and they indicated that they had done a thorough check of the car and that either I put the wrong fuel in or that the gas station had unleaded fuel in its' diesel tank. They also indicated that a diesel automobile cannot run on unleaded fuel and that it would just stop running. I then inquired as to how my car ran all day on Tuesday after pumping the gas. I drove approximately 50+ miles that day. He indicated at that point that “sometimes” a car can run on “bad” gas. I also stopped by the service station on the way home and spoke with the assistant manager about the problem. She gave me the name of the manager and indicated that there had been no other complaints.

    Early on Thursday morning, I contacted the manager of the gas station. We spoke about the claim that Volkswagen was making and she said that all of their fuel was tested before it went into tank and that there was no way that there could be unleaded gas in the diesel tank. She also indicated that the nozzles on the tanker truck were different for diesel and unleaded and that the claim Volkswagen was making was impossible. I then requested a receipt from the Phillips headquarters and it was immediately faxed to me. It clearly indicated that I had pumped diesel gas. That afternoon, I spoke with the service coordinator at the dealer and he indicated that they had flushed the fuel system and the car was fixed and ran fine. The gentleman asked if I had contacted the service station in which I indicated that I had and that I had proof that I pumped diesel. He said that it really didn’t matter, because that was what the problem was and therefore I had to pay for the repair. He then transferred me to his manager. He indicated that that was the problem and there was nothing that they could do to help me. That evening I went to the dealer to pick-up the car. I spoke again with the service advisor and he indicated that I should be careful where I buy my gas. I then showed him the receipt that I got from the service station and he again told me that there was nothing that Volkswagen could do and that I would have to take it up with the gas station. At that point, in my frustration, I went ahead and wrote them a check. When I got into the vehicle, the air conditioning was on full blast, the radio was on full blast and the treble and bass controls had been reset. After I pulled out of the lot, I noticed that the car has less than 1/8 tank. I live about ½ mile away from the dealer, but the only gas station in the vicinity that carries diesel is the same service station where Volkswagen says that I bought the “bad” gas. Therefore, I opted to just go to the home and hopefully, I could make it to a gas station by my work the next day.

    On Friday morning, I attempted to start the car and it would not start. I was on the phone once again with Roadside Assistance. I also called and spoke with a different service advisor at the dealer and indicated that the car was being towed there again. They indicated that they would take it in and see what was wrong with it. Several minutes after ending the call, I received another call from the original service advisor indicating that they would look at the car and try and figure out what was wrong with it and that they would not be cashing the check that I wrote to them the day before. Although I was happy that they weren’t going to charge me, the fact remained that there was still something wrong with “new” car. By the way, the gas problem was never mentioned again…

    Later that afternoon, I received a call from the service advisor and he indicated that they had done yet another “thorough” check of the car and that the security system cluster was “shot” and that they needed to order parts and replace the entire cluster. This could take anywhere from 2 days to 6 weeks or more. They indicated that they would cover a rental car until that time. At this point, I was furious. A short time later, my parents stopped by the dealer and spoke with the service manager and the owner’s son. They made an attempt to let my parents know what the problem was “now”. They said that they had to wait for parts from Germany and that as far as the warranty was concerned, they were obligated to give me a rental car and that was all. They also gave my parents a 1-800 # and told them that maybe Volkswagen credit could defer a payment or two since I couldn’t drive the $575/month car.

    I proceeded to call Volkswagen Credit and he indicated they will only defer payments under certain circumstances, but this type of circumstance did not qualify as that. He then directed me to another number for Volkswagen of America. He indicated that they were the ones that held warranties on behalf of Volkswagen and that maybe they could help me out on payment or two.

    I then called and spoke with a consumer advocate on behalf of Volkswagen of America. I proceeded to explain the entire situation. She indicated that she had never heard of a Volkswagen dealer treating a customer that way and that she was very sorry on behalf of Volkswagen. I explained that I was just numb with frustration and I needed someone to help me. She apologized profusely and asked what I would like for them to do on my behalf. Wow, now maybe we’re getting somewhere with customer service… I indicated that the only thing I wanted was to get my $2000 down payment back, get out of the vehicle and be done with it. She indicated that she would see what she could do to make this happen. I also indicated to her that I was considering filing a complaint with the BBB and the Attorney General if something wasn’t done to resolve the issue.

    Basically, in a nutshell, I feel that I am being taken advantage of, belittled, and just overall treated unfairly in this whole situation. All that I want is my down payment back and to get out of this mess.
  • I am researching 06 beetles and came across your post. I drive an Olds Alero and had a very similar problem. Well, I don't even pretend to be a mechanic, but I thought this might give you a starting place. My problem was with the electronic fuel pump. On the pump from the GM factory, there's a little 'sock' filter. When the pressure built up, the sock would stick together and not allow fuel through to the engine. It's not supposed to do this obviously. My car would just lose acceleration all of a sudden. The engine would not shut off, but when I pressed the gas pedal, nothing happened. The RPMs went to normal idling range. Pressing the gas pedal didn't even make the RPMs increase, which indicated to me that it wasn't the transmission (it wasn't slipping into neutral). Then, out of the blue, I'd try the pedal one more time, and the car would accelerate like nothing had happened. No codes will show up, and it took my dad (a mechanic) driving it about 30 miles before he could duplicate the problem. Anyway, long story short, I had the fuel pump replaced, and the problem was solved.
    Like I said, this may or may not help you. I'm sure there's some major differences between GM and VW (or at least I hope there are!). I'd hope that with only 14,000 miles you wouldn't already need a new fuel pump. I just thought I'd share in case! Good luck!
  • I just bought my first diesel. I was told to turn the key once and let the glo plugs heat up. I was also told that this should only take a minute or two to start the car. It actually takes almost an hour or more depending on how cold it is. The dealer keeps telling me there is nothing wrong with the car. So is there something else I am so suppose to do? I really hate getting up at 5am to get my car started.
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    An hour to start a car? Try this. Turn on the key and wait for the glow plug light to go out. Then turn the key off momentarily, turn on again and wait for the glow plug light to go out. You can cycle the glow plugs two or more times, depending on how cold it is outside.

    You probably have a glow plug relay that keeps the glow plugs on for very short time, which may not be enough for cold starts in cold weather.

    I have a Mercedes 300SD and I usually cycle the glow plugs twice for a cold start and this works just fine. There are glow plug relays that keep the glow plugs on longer, even after the engine has started. You may need to change your relay if you live in cold country.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 57,604
    DEFINITELY defective glow plug system unless maybe you live in Siberia at which point the engine would not even turn over.

    What ambient temps are you operating at in the morning? Is the car outdoors?

    MODERATOR --Need help with anything? Click on my name!

  • fish8fish8 Posts: 2,282
    Sorry to hear about your problems with your new beetle!!!!

    $575.00 per month for a Beetle?? :surprise:
  • 1. EPC and check engine lights lit constantly.

    2. Arm rest broken, and door pulls peeling.

    3. Dash board lights by the heater controls not working.

    4. Radio/cd player works sometimes.

    5. Pass. door pops loudly when you open and close the door.
    Does anybody have a definate answer why the EPC light lights up. It sounds like the dealers just keep replacing things until it goes away. Can anyone send me to a good repair shop or dealership in the Chicagoland area? I do not want to spend a fortune on this car-I'll trade it in on an American(union) :lemon: built car, maybe the quality will be better.
    I'll miss the turbo spooling up and the power -but I do not want a car that will bleed my bank account dry.
  • fredzfredz Posts: 1
    I have a 2006 New Beetle with the new 2.5 liter engine. It has about 2,000 miles on it. When I accelerate the heat coming out of the vents is really hot. However, when I am stopped or at idle, I have no heat. After about 20 seconds the air from the vents gets cold, really cold. AC button is not on, temp. control is at the highest heat setting. It is at VW now for the second time. It was a real hassle this morning and I live in Chicago and I cannot defrost the windsheld unless I am accelerating. Any ideas?
  • I just bought my 2000 GLS back in July, and was told everything was in excellent running condition at the time of the buy. My brake pad light came on, and I haven't noticed any problems with braking. In my last car, I could feel a difference when it was time to replace them. I'm very apprehensive about going to the dealership or anywhere else to have them replace the pads especially if they're still in decent condition. Could it be that the light just came on for some other reason?
  • I have a 2000 Beetle that was purchased new in 2000. Like many people I am finding out I have had a slew of problems involving the check engine light, the power windows, etc...Yesterday my car decided to catch fire. I think it may be an electrical issue. The fire appeared to start in the center console by the AC Switch and it spread to the radio and then engulfed center console. The fire dept. was great and was able to extinguish the balaze and disconnect the battery. Has anyone heard of this being an issue? I am still shook up and am dreading dealing with VW and the dealer tomorrow. Any advice/ info re. similar issues would be welcome.
  • Hi,
    Can anyone give me any information on the 2005 Turbo gas engine. I am thinking about buying one and is there any thing I should look out for. Any good things or bad things would be helpful. Is it a good beetle to buy, thanks Shawn.
  • I had the same problem well most of the problems that your having. i have a 2001 new bettle. the epc light also came up and the dealer explained to me that it means something is not working good electric wise. mine was the break lights. eventually the just wouldnt turn off after i let go of the breaks and as soon as they fixed it the epc light turned off. it wasnt too expensive and also the check engine light turned off after that. My arm rest is broken in that it doesnt click closed you can open it by just lifting up the cover im not sure if thats what you mean. The dash board lights where the A/C is also went out and i took it to the dealer and they fixed it for 50.00.. now its fine.. My Radio works fine but the buttons are starting to sink in so its harder to press them in.. Now my a/c is having some electrical problem and it stops coooling and sometimes it works fine and now its leaking water making the car over heat when i dont realize the water is low... oh wait let me not forget they told me when i went to do the oil change that the screw on the oil pan was too tight causing something to crack and its slowly leaking oil.. but i love my car so i will continue fixing the little problems i have 55000 miles so i expect these things to happen :mad:
  • i need to find out where the backuplight switch is on a 1974 vw beetle becuase neiither one of the backup lights work.
  • The key with the beeper has been lost, and the cost according to the dealer, is $400. to replace the key and have it programed. This seems highway (or perhaps driveway) robbery!! Isn't there a less expensive way to have this key replaced? Can one open the door with a slim jim, or even have a lock smith open it, and still not have problems with the alarm system? This is critical, but so is the cost of towing, keys, and programing at a total of over $500 . Any solutions anyone can suggest? Thanks.
  • Anyone know how to replace lost keys with beeper without paying $400 for a NB? My daughter lost her keys(the bob had come loose) and now she can't even get into the car to get her stuff. The dealership says it cost $300 for the reprograming of the key, which costs $98. This just doesn't seem reasonable, but the key places say they can't make a key for the car because it a security key, or something like that. Can one use a slim jim to open it , or get a key anywhere else? Any info?
  • Hello there. I only come on this site occasionally because I found I was getting too frustrated. I have a 2004 Convertible Turbo Gas 5 speed tiprtonic. While I like the car for the most part, I do mostly city driving, and I am only getting at best 15.l/2 miles per gallon in the city. The best I got on highway driving at 65 MPH with cruise control was 20 mpg. I almost sold it but then the price of gas came down and I decided to keep it. It only has 8,000 miles on it. After I complained to VW customer care, they put me in touch with the head mechanic and after checking everything, they said, there are no computer faults and everything is working fine so they don't know why I am getting such poor mileage but there is nothing they can do. They suggested taking it out on the weekend and driving it on the open highway for at least an hour doing 65 + to burn off any carbon deposits and then maybe after the car gets "broken in" and has about 15,000 miles on it, it will get better mileage.

    I don't know what kind of driving you do, but if you do drive city driving, you are in for a shock. I met anotther VW convertible tubo driver and she said she does mostly highway driving and is at best getting only 20 mpg'

    Good luck.
  • Do you belong to the Auto Club or Triple AAA , They usually have a service which can unlock your car.
  • Wow, that is pretty crappy. I have a 2004 VW Beetle Convertible Turbo and if I had to do it all over again, I would never buy one. After reading the horrible stories on this forum, I do not have a lot of confidence in the car. I would continue to bug VW customer care and do not stop until you get the satisfaction you desrve. You should not have that problem and even so, they should be breaking their necks to take care of it. Demand they take the car back and give you your money back.

    Good luck
  • I also have a New Beetle 2.5 liter engine with the same problem. Have had the car about 2 months, also live in Chicago.Took the car to the dealer, dealer saw the same problem, could not find anything wrong. Took the car home, got half way, same problem, immediatly returned to service. Service Manager and tech. drove the car,saw the problem, kept the car for a week only to tell me again that it is running as it should. I called V W of america from the dealer and was told that they should test it against another 2006, 2.5, but they don't have one. Now What? Filed a complaint with V W, lot of good that does, I am hoping that they will find an update or something. Advised to take to service where there is another car with the same engine. Any ideas appreciated.
  • After 75k miles our 2000GL occasionally makes a funny noise when the key is released. Is it just whining or is it something serious? Anyone know what it could be?
  • lsimlsim Posts: 7
    I am about to purchase a 2006 convertible bug and my questions does the bug perform in bad weather? I live in PA and that's important to me. Can the car withstand snow accumulation on the roof? Can you drive it through a automatic carwash? Can anyone give helpful feedback? Thanks
  • Hi, I have a 2001 1.8 turbo manual beetle (it's my third VW). I love my car and it used to be so quick and zippy. I've had the engine light problems and console problem and others, but nothing major. My oil was low recenly and I added some until I had time to get an oil change. About same time I noticed a lack of power - the turbo didn't feel like it was really kicking in. Decided to get tune up and got schedule oil change.... no change. The turbo feels like it is just fading more and more. Any ideas?? It's very upsetting....
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