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Volkswagen TDI Models



  • jabildajabilda Posts: 47
    my Jetta S/W TDI yesterday. Will let everyone know my experiences. I'm trying hard to follow the break-in recommendations.

    Anyone else notice this - the VW manual seems to be geared toward the gas engine. It states 5w-40 / 5w-30 for oil. Is this the same for the TDI? In any event, this car will take synthetic oil.

    Lastly, I'm will not decide on a chip until the warranty runs out (see prior 'chipping' discussion). VW is definitely looking for this on the TDI's and voiding warranties.
  • 8u6hfd8u6hfd Posts: 1,391
    Castrol Syntec is CJ (I believe it's J) approved. Making it suitable for diesel engines.

    Synthetic "Diesel" oil is available in 5W40 multi-weight, namely Mobil Delvac1. The Shell Rotella synthetic I heard is excellant also.
  • moparbadmoparbad Posts: 3,868
    According to a service bulletin, Volkswagen recommends the use of synthetic oil in the TDI engine.
    Oils which are suitable for the full recommended oil change interval in all climates include, but aren't limited to:
    Mobil Delvac 1, 5w40 (full synthetic, a reformulated version of Mobil 1 which is intended for diesel engines)
    Chevron Delo 400, 5w40 (full synthetic version)
    Shell Rotella T (full synthetic version, not to be confused with Rotella SB synthetic blend or regular Rotella T non-synthetic)
    Amsoil Series 3000, 5w30 (full synthetic, CH-4 rated)
    Amsoil High Performance, 10w40 (full synthetic, CH-4 rated)
    Amsoil semi-synthetic 15w40 (CH-4 rated and high quality, but almost as expensive as the full synthetic, and higher viscosity at low temperatures)
    Redline, synthetic version (make sure you get the type meant for diesel engines, with the CG-4 or CH-4 rating)
  • jabildajabilda Posts: 47
    for the information.
  • jabildajabilda Posts: 47
    I can pick up a good repair manual for my Jetta S/W TDI? Should I just go to VW for this?
  • moparbadmoparbad Posts: 3,868
    A Bentley repair manual is what you want. They are available from several places. Here is one

    Other sources are the dealer,, has some of them, local book stores can order them, and etc.. The Bentley is the best that you will find.

  • how do you all feel about your purchase of your TDI? those of you who have had it for a while, how has it held up? does it drive like an old mercedes? im considering buying one, but i am weary of a diesel. thanks!
  • bluewolfbluewolf Posts: 101
    Go to and ask your question in the TDI forum, tons of owners there. This TDI board doesn't get much action.
  • 8u6hfd8u6hfd Posts: 1,391
    My #38 post is screwed up, I has thinking SJ...before someone points it out.

    The new TDIs don't drive like the old Rabbit Diesels, they have power (which a Rabbit Diesel owner said after riding mine).
  • jabildajabilda Posts: 47
    Update on dealer recommended oil, confirmed by Castrol. Apparently, Castrol Syntec (as 8u6hfd point out) is the synthetic oil 'of choice.' Of course, both stated that the oil is for VW TDI's only AND available only at the dealership (I'm sure for a hefty penny above already higher costs for synthetic oil). The oil is 5w-40.
  • natescapenatescape Posts: 176
    I'm running Syntec right now, 5-40, and I got it at AutoZone.

    They're full of it if they say it's for diesel only.
  • moparbadmoparbad Posts: 3,868
    Use only diesel specific synthetic oil for TDI. Use an oil that is CH-4 or CG-4 rated. Castrol Syntec is not CH-4, is not CG-4 and is not a true synthetic oil(it is a group III). The Syntec at the dealer is a better oil than the Syntec at AutoZone, Pepboys, and etc, and is OK for the TDI but is more expensive and less effective than oils listed earlier in this topic.
    The correct oil for the TDI is 5W-40 or 5W-30 full synthetic CH-4 or CG-4 rated oil. If you put anything less in your car you are not meeting VW requirements for the TDI engine.
    Older TDI such as natescapes B4 originally used non synthetic oil, VW later issued a TSB calling for synthetic and it is required in all current models.
  • natescapenatescape Posts: 176
    If any of you are sitting on the fence and are considering running biodiesel, I just have to say that I'm running my first tank and LOVE IT. The car is running smoother, the exhaust smells like popcorn (kinda), and smoke is virtually eliminated.

    For a list of locations you can buy BD, go here -

  • jabildajabilda Posts: 47
    44 MPG. Some city travel. Looking for improvement to this #. Also, only used cruise once (not using cruise during break-in period).
  • Hi.. I am driving an 84 Quantum Turbo Diesel, and I have read a lot about bio-diesel. What are you paying per/gal for the fuel? I know it will work fine in my car, but I drive a lot, so if the fuel is significantly more expensive it will be a problem. I have also read about the Greasel kits ( The site says it works great, and the fuel would probably be free. But if you have any info/horror stories etc. I would appreciate it.
    These kits are NOT for the TDI though, Only the Pre-1992 diesels.
    I love my car...It has 260,000 miles on it.. still going strong. But I have had the pleasure of driving a TDI.. One word.. WOW!!!
    More power... better mileage.. less smoke..less noise... Doesn't get any better.
    Thanks for your help.
  • What has been your experience with cold-weather starting of the TDI; also any special treatment of the fuel needed in the winter?

    Also, any comments on the cold-weather option; is it needed?

    I live on the seacoast in Mass; but travel to Maine regularly - so get cold weather there. Not so much this year; but usually -10 to -15F happens often.
  • natescapenatescape Posts: 176
    I pay $2.25/gallon for it, but I get it at a place called Solar Market (, where they have greatly increased cost. If you're willing to buy 1000 gallons (*wink*), you can get it shipped to you for $1.55 + $.33 shipping per gallon. Of course, then you have to store it... ;)

    Check out the site below for a list of places that carry it:

  • bluewolfbluewolf Posts: 101
    Just filled up with BD here in Phoenix for $2.09 on Thursday. No more stinky diesel odor on start up, an really smooth running. Best part is it keeps fuel dollars in the USA, and not going to Opec / foreign states that support terrorism.

    Love my TDI more than my 1.8T as a city car AND on the highway. When the 1.8T lease is up, I'm getting a 2nd TDI!

    Go Diesel!
  • Hello everyone,

    I am considering buying a new VW jetta TDI. We have been using homemade biodiesel for a year now, but only on cars from the 80s. It has been working great! I was wondering if anyone out there is running a NEW car on biodiesel. If so, what difficulties and advantages have you found? Does VW remove the warranty if they find out that someone has been using an alternative fuel in the car?

  • ficklefickle Posts: 98
    I'd like to ask the TDI owners about their driving conditions. I've been contemplating a move to a Hybrid Civic or Toyota Prius for the fuel economy. But then I heard about the TDI getting great gas mileage also. I understand that great mileage is for highway driving. How is the gas mileage in stop-and-go and stuck-in-traffic driving? I guess I'll be polluting the air even more with the diesel? Your opinions and real world experience is appreciated.
  • 8u6hfd8u6hfd Posts: 1,391
    Stop and go traffic, I get around 44 mpg.

    Highway (70 mph): 55 mpg

  • moparbadmoparbad Posts: 3,868
    My last tank in my Jetta Wagon was over 50 MPG. This is with 5 spd.. My Golf with auto averages 42 to 43 mpg. in mixed city/highway. There are plenty of Prius owners with averages below 40. Don't know about the Honda. For the same cost of the Honda or Prius I have a sunroof, heated seats, better crash test scores and more space than Prius or Civic. As far as emissions the TDI does emit more pollutants than the Civic or Prius. Even so it is considered a green car in Canada and Europe. CO2 emissions are very low, but NOx and particulates are higher. The emissions for the TDI are affected greatly by the high sulfur low cetane diesel fuel in the US. By 2006 there is scheduled to be low sulfur diesel in the US.
    With the TDI you get a more luxurious and fun to drive high MPG car. I feel you simply get more for your money with TDI than Prius or Civic. With any of the three you are doing the environment a favor compared to 98% of the vehicles sold.
    If you want high mileage to reduce the cost of driving then the TDI and the hybrids do not make sense. The higher cost of purchase is not recovered by the decrease in fuel mileage.
  • natescapenatescape Posts: 176
    Yes, UP makes a great chip for them, and the chip ROCKS. Just be aware that if your dealership finds out, they just might try to void your warrantee.
  • rcastabrcastab Posts: 2
    I am trying to decide whether to get the TDI model or the 1.8L engines. But What about maintenance cost and reliability, anyone know if the TDI models require more expensive maintenance? Is the TDI engine a hybrid engine?
    I got to thinking about this issue, when I thought about more mileage per gallon and thinking green. But then I realize that the new hybrids, half electric with a generator motor, and the other half fuel engine, both working together to achieved low mpg. But what I concern about is the maintenance for these new hybrid vehicles, are they really green in the long run, especially the battery storage for the generators, from what I understand they use multiple battery cells to store energy charge. Eventually these new batteries need to be replace and brings another issue of proper disposal and pollution. I might be wrong but I hoping someone can help me clear things up. Thanks!
  • 8u6hfd8u6hfd Posts: 1,391
    It's not a hybrid.

    Here's the basic maintenance for the TDI
    10,000 miles: oil change (the 1st 2 oil changes are done 5,000 miles)
    20,000 miles: fuel filter
    80,000 miles: timing belt

    The 1.8T does 5,000 mile oil changes (my owner's manual isn't in front of me), you got spark plugs to change, fuel filter, & timing belts also.
  • natescapenatescape Posts: 176
    Diesels are marginally cleaner than hybrids (wait to see the huge amounts of batteries that will clog our landfills in the coming decades if hybrids take off). They're also infinitely more drivable and safe.

    If you run biodiesel in a TDI, you have the greenest car on the road, by a HUGE margin.
  • rcastabrcastab Posts: 2
    I called my local dealer today and asked the same question, salesperson said "yes they are made in Mexico". But I remember someone or something online said they were made in Germany. Can someone tell me where they are really constructed. Thanks!
  • leemondoleemondo Posts: 4
    Here is an Indigo blue TDI wagon VIN I found listed online. I used a VIN decoder site to break it down. Looks like (not surprised based on my experience) your salesman needs some remedial training. :-)

    Volkswagen & Audi VIN decoder Version 1.11, September 2000
    VIN Number: WVWSP61J12W525065
    Model Year No value found for value - 2 (2)
    Model Type Golf/Jetta/Bora(A4) (1J)
    Model Style VW Passenger car made in Europe (WVW)
    Body Type 4 door Sedan (S)
    Engine Type No value found for value - P (P)
    Rest Type Driver, Passenger & Side Airbag Restraint (6)
    Plant Made Wolfsburg (W)

  • saffiresaffire Posts: 1
    Hi all, new to this message center. I ordered a TDI Golf GL on 2/5/02 and as far as anyone can tell, it's still on a boat from Rio. Does anyone have any idea of how long it's going to take to get to Milwaukee? My dealer said 90 days, but it's been more than that already. What type of experiences have you had? Thanks!
  • minuchin1minuchin1 Posts: 6
    I'm a not-so-happy TDI owner and I'd like to know if anyone else has been plagued by similar maintenance--front passenger window rail broke; glow plugs went out and needed to be replaced; rear brakes were out of alignment and the right side wore to metal while the other pad was relatively unmarked; sporadic problems with the harness wiring; and now, the mass air control system went out. This is all within a 7 month period. I've enjoyed brief periods of driving this car but cannot keep up with these costly repairs every one to two months. Any ideas?
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