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Volkswagen TDI Models



  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 18,383
    Yes, Read up on and execute a EGR modification. You will need access to a to effect the 1-2 min change computer setting change.

    It is absolutely galling how it cost you 3k to effect repairs that could have been almost totally averted by this 1-2 minute computer adjustment procedure.!!!!

    Do a search on the under TDIFAQ,...MAINTENANCE...Intake Manifold and EGR Cleaning,... Avoiding the Need for Intake Manifold Cleaning - Recalibrating the EGR System....

    It should explain the procedures et all, in pretty good detail. This is like one of two suicide or self destruct features on the VW and TDI. The other is the possibility of catastrophic failure in case of timing belt failure.
  • fish8fish8 Posts: 2,282
    Have you followed the maintenance schedule for your jetta since new?
  • sebring95sebring95 Posts: 3,238
    I'd like to know how it could cost $3,000 to fix this problem. I helped someone clean their EGR in my driveway over the course of a couple hours. I've heard dealers charging $500 or so for this which could be possible. We're they throwing a bunch of parts at it before they actually cleaned the EGR? This is typical VW dealer crap.

    BTW, crappy diesel is responsible for the EGR buildup. The EGR system is in place for emissions reasons, but if left operating and used in conjunction with crappy diesel it will plug-up quickly. I don't think this is mentioned anywhere in the manual as a maintenance issue, it's something the average consumer has to figure out on their own. I don't have any build-up in my EGR but I've taken precautions to assure this.
  • Thanks for the info - I'll check into the computer mod to repair. Overall, the repairs werea; egr valve, exhaust cooler, intake, bent valve, head gasket and three trips to the dealer. I did have the dealer replace the timing belt. As far as maintenence, we had the dealer perform all suggested maintenance as per the schedule. I realize that bad diesel will cause excessive buildup. We purchase the majority of our fuel from the local Mobil station - I assume that this fuel is of adequate quality. To sebring95, I'm curious what precautions you follow to assure a clean EGR?
  • sebring95sebring95 Posts: 3,238
    One way to assure the intake stays clean is to disable the EGR. This can be done with a VAGCOM in a matter of seconds. It's technically illegal to disable for on-road use.

    City driving also encourages the EGR to activate (if it's not disabled) so a lot of city driving can increase the gunk inside the intake.

    I generally run a premium diesel (BP Supreme) which is much cleaner than your average diesel. Engine runs quieter/smoother as well. Biodiesel is also another good way to ensure a clean intake. Users of B-20 (20% biodiesel, 80% diesel) report cleaner intakes as well.
  • Hi all,
    I have a '99 Jetta GLX vr6 w/34k, and I'm getting a little fed up with its problems.

    I'm interested in the RSX-S, Golf TDI, and WRX. Any suggestions? I've read some of your problems, and that all seems manageable compared to my Jetta.

    What do you think? I'd appreciate it.
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    A combination of a 'cooled EGR' on the TDI engine coupled with oil vapors coming from the crankcase thru the "crankcase ventilation system" makes for a residue that coats and eventually plugs up the intake manifold.

    This is one reason that VW specifies using only SYNTHETIC oil that meets the VW505.1 specification. (This oil is INTENDED for use in a 'cooled EGR' diesel engine.)

    ADDITIONALLY: Driving the TDI engine gingerly or "babying" it will also tend to plug up the intake and the turbocharger. A diesel engine needs to be run HARD once in a while to keep things cleaned out. This can be accomplished by brisk acceleration once in a while. You may get a cloud of black smoke... this shows that you are cleaning out the soot from the turbocharger.

    Of course, I applied the "EGR mod" to my TDI at 3000 miles because I 'did my homework' and researched for many months before purchasing.
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    This problem is not unique to diesel engines. There is a technical bulletin on Mazda 626 V6 engines addressing the same issue. They recommend using Techron injector cleaner in your fuel tank occassionally to help prevent this problem.

    I recently replaced the EGR valve in my 83 Mercedes 300 SD (5 cylinder turbodiesel). I bought the new EGR valve for $ 100. It is a genuine Mercedes replacement part, but from an aftermarket company. I absolutely cannot believe that it would cost $ 3000 to repair clogged EGR passages on a Jetta TDI. I bet I could get my Mercedes engine rebuilt for $ 3000 (not that it needs it).
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    On the TDI... the INTAKE MANIFOLD gets clogged due to a mixture of SOOT from the EGR and oil-vapors from the crankcase.

    I have never heard of the EGR system itself getting cloged on the TDI. If this were to happen then the intake manifold would not plug up because one of the 2 factors leading to intake clogging would be missing. (But a 'check engine' light (CEL) would be flagged)

    In fact, the "EGR MOD" does EXACTLY this very thing -- it cuts off the EGR function to the bare minimum. (just above the point of throwing a CEL)
    It PURPOSELY "pluggs up" the EGR using the computer programming.

    Do not forget that EGR is for emmissions only... recirculating the exhaust gasses back into the engine has NEVER been 'good' for an engine.
  • So the new Jettas will be getting tiptronic?

    I guess that's the new "baby tiptronic" for the transverse engines? I believe the Passat (with the longitudinal engine) gets the same tiptronic tranny as the A-8 and Phaeton. I'm not sure if that's really better, but it is designed to handle more power. Not an issue with a Jetta TDI!
  • moparbadmoparbad Posts: 3,868
    quote dilbreath-but it is designed to handle more power. Not an issue with a Jetta TDI!-end

    Power is an issue with the new Jetta TDI. It has 177 lb/ft of torque, more than the 1.8T.

    for 2004
    2004 Golf, Jetta and New Beetle GL and GLS trim levels will have a new 1.9L TDI-PD with 100hp and 177 lb-ft. of torque available in GL and GLS trim levels. The Golf and Jetta models will be available with a choice of a 5-speed manual or 5-speed tiptronic transmission.
  • I'm considering buying a diesel Jetta after I graduate from college. I want to know how much power I can get with fairly basic mods like bigger injectors, chip or fueling box, exhaust mods, things like that.

    This car would be a daily driver, but noise and smoke are not a problem (highly desirable, in fact).

    This will be an interim vehicle while I save up for a full size diesel pickup, so I don't want to spend too much money on it, but I want it to be enjoyable to drive while I've got it.

    I was a diesel mechanic in a past life, so I'm able to work on it myself, but I'm not real familiar with the particulars of VW's.
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    (hotrodlincoln1) NO PROBLEM! Just beware that the stock clutch cannot handle even the UPSOLUTE. (You can slip the clutch just by rolling-on the throttle 8-)

    Chip =>

    Injectors =>

    Gauges =>

    Intercooler pipes =>

    BTW --- the MPG has been reported to IMPROVE with the above modifications with daily driving - (until you get heavy on the throttle)
  • That should be good and plenty for me.

    I take it someone sells an aftermarket clutch that can take the torque?
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    (hotrodlincoln1) Some folks have installed the clutch from the VR6 engine.. but this requires replacing the friction plate as well.

    I also understand that there is now an aftermarket clutch available that can handle the increased torque.

    Do not forget that one reason that the clutch on the stock Jetta is so nice to drive is because it is a "dual density" friction plate design... apparently there are not many aftermarket parts available for this.
  • moparbadmoparbad Posts: 3,868
    The auto transmission requires no modifications when modifications such as chip and larger injectors are installed.
  • I bought a 2000 TDI and am glad to finally have a place to vent a little. This car has been nothing but trouble. Replaced emmissions valve, and have replaced two brake relays over the last year and a half. Additionally for the last year the vehicle has been slow to start when the temperatures get below @ 70 degrees. Had to turn it over for about thirty seconds before it would finally start running, Dealerships can't seem to fix the problem and finally told me that it was most likely the injection pump. I had a diesel specialist check it out and he said that there is no power to the glow plugs. One dealership says that the glow plugs are controlled by the main computer, another says that there is a $131.00 relay that may be causing the problem. There have been no codes so they are basically at a lost except to just start changing parts until the problem is fixed. Also replaced the battery and had another bad experience. It seems that if you replace the battery that "codes have to be reset so I shelled out another $115.00 for the battery and an additional hour for installing the battery and reseting the codes. Seems silly to me. The latest problem is the brake relay switch. While I was on the road the cruise control stopped working and the glow plug light started flashing. This happened about a year ago so I had a good idea what it was. Sure enough, another relay switch had to be installed only this time when i got the car back and started home the cruise control would not release at times and the brakes would drag. Took the car back to the dealership that put in the switch thinking that they just did something wrong but they told me that the TDI's have as very strong vacuum system and that there is a spring in the brake booster that becomes weak thus causing the brakes to stick and stay applied. There was absolutely no evidence of this problem when I took the car in so it seems odd that all of a sudden I would have a weak spring in the brake booster. I really like this car but this is the last straw. Maintenance is just too expensive and required to frequently. 65000 mile service cost me $1400.00 with the emmissions valve that was replaced. I could have paid for a lot of fuel with what I have spent on maintenance the last year.
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    Dosn't 'venting' make you feel better? Now that you have vented, do you want some help with the problems? There are known 'fixes' for most of the issues you mention.

    BTW: By federal law, all emmissions equipment is covered by the "Federal Emmissions Warantee" for 10 years/100,0000 miles on a 2000 model.
  • Yeah bpeebles, I would love some advice. Really can't find a shop that seems to know what they are doing.
  • sebring95sebring95 Posts: 3,238
    Did the starting problem begin shortly after the timing belt change (i'm assuming they changed the timing belt at 65k for that much $$$)? I've seen starting problems after a belt change if the belt change was bungled and the timing not set right. I've personally seen lots of bungled timing belt jobs by dealers so that wouldn't surprise me.

    As for the glow plugs, they don't even operate until much colder temps. My glow-plug harness died on me this spring, and I just got around to fixing it recently. Doesn't matter a bit if the glow-plugs work in the summer. I think 45F is about the point they start becoming necessary.

    Never heard of the brake problem. I'm at 70k miles on factory pads with no issues.

    What is this "emissions valve" and how much did they charge for it? Was it an EGR valve? Why did it need replaced?
  • moparbadmoparbad Posts: 3,868
    2004 US Jetta TDI Prices
    GL 5-speed manual: 18,670
    GL 5-speed tiptronic: 19,745

    GLS 5-speed manual: 20,480
    GLS 5 speed tiptronic 21,555

    Monsoon is standard on 2003 GLS. Cold weather pkg not available on 2004 GL.
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    (crankytdi) If the timing belt is known to be set properly, many starting issues have been traced to mis-timed injection. (or injectors)

    Are you getting excessive smoke and less than 50MPG? (these are signs of mis-adjusted injection timing)

    There is a "master" injection timing setting that is set by physically adjusting the injection pump.

    There is also "electronic" timing settings that can be checked/adjusted using a laptop computer.

    Many folks with starting issues have reported that after having the above injection timing(s) properly set up... their TDI starts quicker than a GASSER...even at cold temps.

    Sorry I cannot help you any further with this.
    I have never had a starting problem... my TDI fires up with a touch of the key at all temps. (I have checked my Injection Timing with laptop though)

    I suggest you spend some time in the TDIFAQ it is full of great information. (and has an extensive section on hard starting and how to check/adjust the above injection timings with laptop computer)

    The very best source of TDI knowledge is fellow TDI owners that are willing to hook up their laptop to your TDI and are skilled at setting up all of the slick features. I was lucky enough to locate a fellow TDI owner near me to help set up my EGR settings using a laptop to eliminate the dreaded "clogged intake manifold" issue.

    Let us know how this works out for you.
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    (moparbad) The "Monsoon" is NOT standard on 2003 GLS. The 'standard' on the GLS looks like the Monsoon but does not have the fancy amplifier in the trunk nor the speakers that go with it. (head unit is identical and has same number of speakers... just not the 'monsoon' speakers)

    I specifically orderd my 2003 GLS without the 'monsoon' and it STILL sounds better than my sisters fancy BMW system. In my opinion, the 'monsoon' is not worth the xtra $$ over the 'standard' system which is VERY good.
  • moparbadmoparbad Posts: 3,868
    Sorry. I intended to type 2004, not 2003. 2004 GLS has Monsoon standard.

    My opinion is that the Monsoon system is worth the extra $325 on the 2003 and 2002. I have it on my 2002 Golf and my previous Golf did not have it. Much, much better than the standard system. The standard system is quite good in my opinion.
    If the diagnostics for VAGCOM were not tied into the head unit I would say forget about Monsoon and go aftermarket.

    I can not wait to try out the 2004 TDI with 177lb/ft of torque.

    Also, I heard that the Passat TDI may actually start showing up in December, which was the original expected time. That would be very nice.
  • The OFFICIAL date is Jan. 2004.
    So the dealers are expecting them in Feb. or March (based on VWs past performance)
  • Hey all, Im looking to purchase a TDI GLS 5 speed with 140,000 miles at $6500 in good shape. Anybody think this is a good deal? Is this too many miles? What is the average longevity of a TDI? Any info would be much appreciated!
  • sebring95sebring95 Posts: 3,238
    Probably not too bad of a deal. You can likely buy one with half the miles for around $10,000 or so. But if this one has excellent maintenance logs I wouldn't be concerned. It's obviously been highway driven and probably has lots of life left in it. If this is something you're going to have to take to the dealer for any problems, you might want to think hard because VW repair can be expensive at a dealer. I can do most of the work myself so I wouldn't have any problems buying that vehicle. Find some locals at to help with repairs and you can keep it on the road for a long time relatively inexpensively.
  • mrjettemrjette Posts: 122
    On the issue of warm weather glow plugs and hard starting... Even in the summer, the glow plug light comes on and I wait for it to go off before turning the key to 'start'. This may take 3-5 seconds, but if they are not required above 45 degrees F, why is the light on? I have found that if I simply turn it all the way to start without waiting, then the car seems to start harder.

    In the NH winter, the light may stay on for upwards of 10 seconds, but the car will start fairly easily once the light goes out. (this patience in key turning takes some getting used to for a lifelong gasser!).

    It is a 2002 Jetta TDi with 18K on it. I average 1K per month, with a daily short commute at 45 mph max, 30 min. ( minus starting and stopping of course). When I head into the big city, I do 20 miles at highway speed (80 or so).

    The questions are: Am I headed for EGR problems with this type of driving? Does my description sound like a glow plug issue?

    Thanks in advance!
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085

    why is the light on? It ALWAYS comes on to indicate glowplug operation then the computer turnes it off based on engine temperture. (colder temps= longer "on time")

    Am I headed for EGR problems with this type of driving? It is not the ROAD speed you drive that may affect the EGR... it is more related to ENGINE speed and loading. (Of course, we assume you HAVE performed the "EGR mod"... otheweise the answrver is a unequivical YES!)

    Does my description sound like a glow plug issue? I have read your append several times and see no "issue" you are describing. What am I missing here?

     If you are experiencing "hard starting" have your IQ checked (Injection Quality)
    The TDI should start like a gasser with no hesitation whatsoever at any temp above 40F.
  • I have a 2001 NB. Nice car. I have noticed that the sensor that tells the car that the door is open no longer works. I know it is a switch, but I was wondering how to get at it? I think it is in the lock, but not sure. It no longer turns on the interior lights, notifies me when I leave the lights are on or leave the keys in the ignition, etc. I was wondering how to get at the switch to examine it. Maybe it is stuck and can be repaired. I certainly want to attempt to replace it myself, but I cannot see how to get the door panels off. Any help with this would be appreciated.
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