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Volkswagen Passat Maintenance and Repair



  • My VW dealer just replaced a "secondary air pump relay" in my 1999 Passat. Does anyone know the function of this part?

  • My wife started hearing a noise from her brakes (2001 Passat 1.8T, 41K miles). We took it in and there is NO padding left (metal on metal). The front brakes are good (not been changed yet). It just seems wierd that 1) the back brakes go before the front and 2) they go at 41K. Has anyone heard of this before. Thanks!
  • altair4altair4 Posts: 1,469
    Well, as you probably know, brake wear will vary by driver. I'd think that the 41K is not that bad (I've read of changes at lower mileage!).

    The "rears-before-the-fronts" thing is a documented Passat experience, but may not be universal. You may have noticed that the rear wheels collect alot more brake dust than the fronts.

    Some have hypothesized that the rears are "under braked," meaning they have a pretty small pad on the rears. Others have suggested the car has a brake bias that favors the rears under light braking. Pick one.

    Could you describe the conditions under which the car is driven? City? Highway? Is your wife an easy-going driver?
  • My wife does more city driving, maybe 60%. She's not too harsh on the car. I've just always thought that cars have most of the braking on the front wheels. I have a Saab and the front brakes have been replaced and the rears are still okay at 70K. But, I'm glad to know this isn't the only case. Thanks.
  • Anyone out there know what/how qualifies a brand new car under "Lemon Laws"? I'm in MN....

    1 1/2 yr old 2002 Passat GLS 1.8T manual transmission, with only 7,500 miles on it. Have had SO many problems with this car and many trips to the dealer. Have spent ALOT of time in rentals.

    Problems have ranged from the ignition coils - all were replaced TWICE now, and could possibly be going on third time....check engine light stayed on this week and car has been hesitating and sluggish. Have had emissions problems (2x) cvboot/axle squeaking in cold temps- that took forever to fix..sounded like the suspension was shot, ashtrays falling out when hit bumps, windshield wipers that don't clear the windshield and scrape, headlight and license plate lamps burned out already and don't forget the heat shield recall. And only has 7500 miles!!!!! I wonder if the car will make it to see 10,000??

    Am thinking of selling it this spring, but want to check into lemon laws first. Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!
  • grega1grega1 Posts: 4
    I recently checked into Lemon Laws as our 2002 1.8 Turbo just threw the rods at 22000 miles and totalled the engine. After 19 days, we have been told to sit tight indefinitely as they are unable to find an engine in the United States. Unfortunately, Volkswagon doesn't have a buy-back policy. In Colorado, the Lemon Law expires after 1 year. Try this website to see if it answers your questions:
  • maina1maina1 Posts: 1
    Three weeks after purchasing the car, the heater was replaced. Numerous problems with the air bag system. Sensor replaced twice and finally control unit. Problems with engine dying during deceleration. I've had five Mazda's, drove all over 100,000 miles with no major problems. At first I thought we got a lemon, but after reading all of these messages, I realize that VW builds unreliable cars. This is my first and last!!
  • profvhprofvh Posts: 31
    In reponse to maina1(#266)I can't account for your
    Passat but I can account for mine. We have 25,000
    miles on our '02 1.8T GLS wagon. The only problem
    we have had is one burned out headlight. It gets
    driven hard in Houston's hellish traffic and its
    well known bad streets. It is as tight as new.
    It is much more enjoyable to drive than any of the
    previous 5 Accords that I have owned. Also more
    trouble-free as well.

    It is my first VW and it will not be my last.
    Great dealer sevice for oil changes as well.
  • We've owned the car for just a few months now and love everything about it except for one very disconcerting problem with the 4Motion drive train.
    It can best be described as a slipping then re-engagement(a lurching)of something in the drive train. It varies in severity, but yesterday while pulling in our driveway it was very pronounced and actually felt like someone rear-ended us at a very low speed. The sensation was actually jarring.

    Steps to reproduce:
    1. Decelerate to a very low speed (< 5 mph) with the brake applied,
    2. Release foot from the brake pedal
    3. Then accelerating again. (gently as if to move further up the driveway for example).The re-acceleration may not be required; it&#146;s just what we&#146;ve noticed so far.

    It feels as if something has disengaged and then re-engaged. The re-engaging can be quite harsh. As mentioned above, yesterday for the first time it seemed more clearly identifiable coming from the rear-end.
    Whatever is happening I believe now almost always happens, it&#146;s just that if the brakes are constantly applied then effect is very subtle.
    We brought it in for serive and the problem got better. But it's coming back again althought not quite as pronounced as it was.
    I read a post on the web about a similar problem with the Passat W8 during a test drive and have heard similar things from casual discussion with Audi Quattro owners.
    Anyway I have this sense that their maybe an underlying problem out there and I wanted to start a message thread for others to benefit from and/or to see if there any thoughts on the problem.
    We've had some cold up here in Northern Mass. The proper "appears" to happen less when it is very cold.
    Thanks in advance!
  • I don't own a Passat, but with my 2002 Oldsmobile Alero w/ traction control, I sometimes notice the same thing, but a little less pronounced. When the traction control kicks in, the engine power is cut and the transmission up-shifts until the wheels stop slipping. Sometimes the wheels will get traction back quick, calling for the tranny to downshift 1 or 2 gears, launching my car. It's kinda cool and I don't see a problem with it since I know what is going on in the drivetrain is supposed to be going on. I would definitely have your Passat looked at though, as it could be tranny trouble or hard shifts.

  • I bought this car new in 99. Car has been regularly maintained at both VW and other service stations altho I appear to be missing some of the invoices for oil changes. Engine seized with 70k miles on it - warranty covers me to 100k - had car towed to dealer (not where I purchased it from, but the closest to where it broke down). Dealer says I must authorize teardown to determine if problem caused by lack of maintenance. If they find "sludge" due to lack of maint they will not honor warranty and I will be billed for "teardown". Suggestions, comments, ideas, any help would be much appreciated on how to deal with the dealer.
  • My 2003 Passat wagon (7 months old) with 4 cyclinder turbo engine does not drive smoothly. Four different people have driven it, and all have trouble getting it to start up from a stop without having the turbo kick in when they don't want it. When driving, even a small hill will cause the turbo to kick in. When the turbo kicks in it is not a smooth transition but pushes you back in your seat. It is nice to have the power, but not when you don't want it. The dealer says it is working the way it is supposed to. Is anyone else having this problem? Any solutions? Thanks.
  • I just had the same experience on my 2001 Passat. Rear metal to metal, front 60% life at 43,500 miles.
  • How many oil-change invoices are you missing? Did you do each of them when the VW manual recommended or before? If you're missing one or two and there is only about 10K miles between the two, I doubt that they would charge you...but then again I'm used to the non-hassle GM service.

    I guess it wouldn't hurt to hope they don't find sludge in the engine...

  • I just bought a '98 VW 1.8t Passat with 84k miles for $5,900. The price was right. I think it was so cheap because it was a stick shift. At least, I hope that was the reason. I've only driven it twice so far. We are in the middle of snow storm.

    Anyway, this is going to be my winter car. My 1st car is a Miata(!). I'm guessing that I will only put 5-7k miles on it a year but I want to make sure the car last.

    From reading the previous posts, I gathered that I should have the brake lines flushed(?). I got a 30-day dealer warranty. What else should I do to make sure my Passat makes it thru this winter and the next? Let me know what you recommend. thx
  • bronsonbbronsonb Posts: 170
    Hi All - well yesterday was my "bad day" for my 1999 Passat. First, a headlight burns out. I go to remove old headlight at auto parts store to match to new one and break some of the plastic clip holding the bulb in the socket. I didn't break enough off to make it so the new bulb couldn't go in, but still.

    I but the new bulb, and when I get home to install it, I discover that the T-handle that pops out under the hood when you pull the hood release inside the car has broken. You pull it, and it's not connected to the device that disengages the hood latch! I used a screw driver to disengage the hood latch and replaced my bulb.

    I compared the T-handle on the 99 Passat with the one on our 2003 Passat, and it appears that on the 99 passat one of the fork-like tines that engaged around a pin has broken off.

    So it looks like I'll be making a trip to the dealer for a new T-handle. I have a feeling I'll have to get more than the latch pull because I bet it's not sold as a single part.

    Anyway, I am wondering if anyone else has had problems with the T-handle and what it cost to replace.
  • altair4altair4 Posts: 1,469
    VW recommends a two year interval for changes of the brake fluid. It's in the owner's manual.

    Regarding other suggestions:
    1) Oil and filter change unless someone can give you positive proof that it was done recently.
    2) I'd recommend synthetic oil for the 1.8T, in the viscosity recommended in the owner's manual.
    3) Make sure that the turbocharger's oil supply lines have the correct heat shield. Early models did not, and this allows the lines to clog, essentially starving the turbo for lubricant.
    4) Review the original warranty and any other warranty you may have. VW has a 105K mile change recommendation for the timing belt and tensioner. But if you are out of warranty, get this done ASAP (broken belt = destroyed engine, since the 1.8T is an interference engine). I'd also get the water pump done at the same time, since you'll save labor in the long run. BTW, this is not an inexpensive job.
    5) There was a recall on the rear wheel liner. Make sure this was's to protect the fuel filler in case the right rear tire self-destructs from a blow out.
    6) There was a recall on the ignition coils, but I'm not sure that your year is affected. Call VWoA with the VIN and they should be able to clarify that.
    This is probably not what you want to hear. Just my thoughts.
  • altair4altair4 Posts: 1,469
    Early Passats had problems in the front suspension/steering. I think it was the control arms? Anyway, I'd check out the front end for noise, play, etc. Since you are under warranty, it might pay to have an independent mechanic (who knows VW's and/or Audi's) to look this over before that 30 day warranty runs out.

    Here's an edit from Click and Clack on the topic:
    >>I have a 1998 Audi A4 with 30,500 miles. I was recently told that the left front control arm has to be replaced and that the right front control arm will soon need replacing. I was told by the dealer's service representative that this is normal wear and tear for a car after four years. I have a hard time buying that. What do you think? -- Tina

    Ray: Well, he would have been telling the truth if he had said it's normal wear and tear for THIS car.<<

    PS: The Audi in question and the Passat share the same front end design.
  • Thanks. I haven't bought a used car in a while & don't want to screw-up the car right off the bat. I think I'll change the oil & brakes fluid this weekend and have the timing belt & tensioner done next month w/income tax return. So, how expensive is timing belt replacement?

    Hey, I haven't dropped off the check from my bank to the dealer yet but I have discovered that I can't open my trunk. I didn't notice before because weather was below zero/snowing & I never thought the trunk could be a problem. Is this a common glitch w/Passats? I told dealer that I would bring the car by tommorrow so they can fix it & then I would give them the bank check once it was corrected. I can't believe they would sell me a car w/broken trunk & not tell me. That's kinda lame.
  • bronsonbbronsonb Posts: 170
    Just wanted to give an update. The T-handle that disengages the hood latch on our 99 Passat broke last night. Well, I stopped by the dealer tonight and was able to pick up another one for a mere $7.06. It only took me about 10 - 15 minutes to replace it when I got home. Phew! I thought for certain I'd have to buy a whole latch assembly just to get that one part!
  • bhottlebhottle Posts: 16
    Some of these posts worry me! I traded an absolute lemon of a 98 Volvo V70 AWD for a 2004 Passat W8 6 speed wagon that we picked up two weeks ago. We had the brakes done six times on the Volvo in 74,000 miles, and the other problems were constant. It was a time share with our mechanic. The Passat W8 is a joy to drive with the 6 speed manual transmission, so I really hope I don't have another problem car. Is there anyone posting to the board who has a 2002 or newer Passat with high mileage? And, does anyone have any reliable input about VW pursuing the quality control issues? By the way, I am not a heavy footed youngster. I am an active 62 year old who knows how to baby a car.
  • fish8fish8 Posts: 2,282
    If I were you I would NOT worry about the reliability of your new W8. If you surf these boards on any thread: Honda, Toyota, etc.......ANYONE would get concerned on whether their car has reliabilty issues. I was looking through the Toyota forum and there were allot of posts on problems with Camry's. As most of us know, Camry's are the pinnacle of reliability (though VERY bland IMHO). So, my point is that with any car you will find problems. VW's are NOT as reliable as Toyota's. But, VW's are good cars. My 2002 Jetta has had 0 mechanical problems in over 26K miles.

    Enjoy your ride and don't let these boards scare you.
  • altair4altair4 Posts: 1,469
    The car has been "debugged" over the years since introduction. The control arms have been upgraded. Other things have been addressed through recall. The Passat is reaching the end of it's current model run. It's probably as good as it gets right now!

    Hey fish8, your comments are dead-on. My wife's Honda Accord has been bullet-proof (until this week). Engine computer is muerta, $800 plus labor. I'm finally cashing in on the extended warranty I bought. And if nothing else goes wrong before it expires at the end of this year, I lost money on the deal!
  • altair4altair4 Posts: 1,469
    Not sure about the cost...seems to range widely depending on the part of the country you are in, whether VW dealer or independent shop performs the work, etc. Let's say between $600 and $1,000, WAG - including timing belt, tensioner, and water pump. Labor is high because of the tight space. BTW, our Honda dealer quoted $800 for TB and water pump on our Accord, so it's in the neighborhood.

    Are you dealing with a VW dealer, or other? Do you plan to have the work done at an indie shop or VW dealer?

    Can't help you on the trunk lid thing. Perhaps someone else here can comment.
  • $600-1000 for timing belt/tensioner/water pump? That's about what I thought. I discovered that my 30-day warranty from dealer (Volvo dealership) is a "limited" warranty. I think VW gives me a 10yr/100k warranty cause that seems to correspond w/what the dealer wrote that my "limited" warranty from them was. Big woopy, huh? This Volvo dealership gives me the willys. They are not covering anything VW isn't & trying to pawn that off on me as a gone deal. But if that is true that I have the VW 10yr/100k warranty, then I don't have to rush out & get the timing belt, water pump, & tensioner done. I plan on using the Passat as a 2nd car so it might be 2 years b4 I reach 100k miles. What do you them? That's good, right?

    Hey, I also got a good reference for an independent VW dealer too. They are near-by. I think that's gonna help a lot.
  • altair4altair4 Posts: 1,469
    I've got a 2003 model and the warranty is different now (they extended the B2B, removed the 2 years of free service, and dropped the 10yr/100K thing). But as I recall, the 10 yr/100K warranty was for the original owner and maybe to the second owner if sold to immediate family.

    I think the warranty reverts to 50,000 miles for all other second owners. I'm only working from memory here, so don't take this as gospel...maybe somebody else can pipe in or, and this might be the best idea, you should call VWoA. That's the only way to be sure. Or even call a local VW dealership and ask the service writer. They might be able to tell you the real deal.
  • have an oil leak right side of engine .have had car on lift can almost see where its leaking . it drops on exhaust manifold causing smell to enter car by way of in cabin filter air intake which is on that side . i put a piece of sheet metal to divert oil away from manifold . it helps but not completely. am worried cud cause fire. i thought it cud be valve cover but have seen in discussions on this site about cam seals this is vw 2000 2.8 4 motion. any suggestions? thx
  • Altair, I pretty much decided to go ahead and get the timing belt, H2o pump, & tensioner done. I called the independent mechanic that was recommended to me and he said he could do all the work for $1050. I'm gonna do it in a couple of weeks along with oil & brake fluids. It's taken me a few days to come around but I think I'm ready to be a used car owner now - with the necessary maintenance & repairs.
  • ckenedickenedi Posts: 16
    I am considering the purchase of a Passat sedan or wagon. I am very familar with them and would be happy with the GL except that I would really like steering wheel mounted audio controls. Is it possible to replace the higher end GLX steering wheel and wiring into the GL to achieve this? Are there non-cheesy (or even cheesy) aftermarket controls?
    Thanks in advance.
  • actually i missing only two invoices with about 10k miles between invoices. i am going to get in touch with vw headquarters and let them deal with this. arguing with the dealer is not getting me anywhere, and i think they are frankly bsing me. of course if i agree to pay for the teardown they will charge me!!!! let vw headquarters investigate and get back to me. any advice let me know, thanks.
  • Good news and bad news: 4 weeks after our 2002 threw the rods as my wife drove to work, the local dealership was able to get an engine. The bad news is that we're waiting on gaskets. Our 2002 had 22000 easy well-cared for miles. We fell in love with the styling and safety, but I would hesitate to buy another.
  • altair4altair4 Posts: 1,469
    I'm on a lot of Passat forums and I have never heard of anyone replacing the steering wheel on a GL to get the radio controls. I'd guess, and it's only a guess, that it would be more work, time and parts than you are thinking.
  • altair4altair4 Posts: 1,469
    Don't be too surprised if VWoA supports the delaer position. I've read a lot of posts where the manufacturer simply won't override the local dealer on these types of things. I'm not trying to be the voice of doom, just be ready.
  • I would look for a new Dealer. Any Dealer that resorts to colorful adjectives while dealing with customers would not get my business...

    I am fortunate to have an excellent VW dealership where I live. The sales and service staff are very courteous, patient, and knowledgeable when it comes to dealing with customers.
  • I have a 2003 Passat W8 sedan. I purchased it last Jan. and drove it in snow one time last winter. I noticed at highway speeds the car would oscillate from left to right, if I wouldn't have kept correcting, the car would have gone out of control. This winter I drove in the snow once again with the same problem. Has anyone experienced this problem?
  • I will never, I mean never buy a Passat (volkswagen in general) again. I have a 2000 GLX wagon that I purchased new. It has 45k miles on it. From the getgo the car burned oil and VW said that it was normal for it to burn 1 qt. per 1,000 miles! This is ridiculous. I have had wind noise next to the drivers door since about 6 months.
    Now for the juicy stuff - starting at the 40k service, the car needed new control arms ($800)and a new head gasket (warranty) Then the oil oil seals blews blew at 43k (which was 6 weeks ago). The seals were covered under warranty. Then the seals leaked 3weeks ago, and had to be replaced again(warranty). We took a trip in the car, and when we came home, the check engine light came on, and guess what, the oil cooler and one of the pistons had to be replaced ($800). When I called VW of America for some kind of $ help, they didn't even have a record of the car in their system (even with the VIN number) and they called me back 2 days later to say that VW will not help at all. When I asked the girl on the phone if I could speak with someone else, her response was, "this is the final decision of VW and I am empowered by our Chairman and our response is final" - Then she hung up on me.
    At this point, I called my dealer service mgr and got the manu. rep, called him, told him all the money I just had to pour into the car, and he knocked off $200 from my latest bill.
    To date, I have put over $3500 in this car (which includes tires and brakes) at 47k miles. I have a 98 Nissan Maxima with 82k miles and all I've ever done is put oil in, 1 set of tires and brakes. That's it. SO LONG VW...SO LONG GERMAN CARS...HELLO HONDA OR NISSAN!
    Oh, just on a whim, I asked the VW dealer what they would give me for a trade in - $11,500! The car was $29.5 new and has less than 50k on it!
  • fish8fish8 Posts: 2,282
    I would also be angered at the response and lack of sympathy from VWoA. Have you tried to take your car to another dealer? Just curious.

    I can tell by your post that your are fuming!!!!

    Hope everything works out for you.
  • Thanks for the response. I did try to take my car to the other local dealer. I had to wait 3 weeks to get it in, so I ended up going back to the dealer where I bought it.
    I did get my area manu. rep to pick up the cost of the parts, thus I only had to pay the labor ($450). They also charged me $90 to plug the car into the computer. I have to call the srv. mgr. back.

    I am looking at a Volvo tomorrow and a Honda Pilot. We'll see what happens.
  • I have a 2002 Passat. How do I replace the wiper blade. I got the OEM blades from the dealer, but I can't seem to get past the two end caps.

    What do I do first?
  • I echo the comment about every make having its lemons. We traded a 98 Volvo V70 AWD for a 2004 Passat W8 6 Speed wagon because the Volvo was an incredible disaster. I am a conservative driver, and it had the brakes done six times in 74,000 miles. It also had so many other problems that it was a time share with our mechanic. Everyone to whom I have spoken since we dumped the Volvo has said that they gave up on a Volvo for the same reasons. So for what it's worth, avoid them! And good luck in your hunt for a reliable car.
  • The brakes on my 2003 W8 wagon squeak horribly. Has anyone else experienced this? I contacted two different VW service depts about this. Both said to do hard braking on the highway. (One said it will improve over time as I drive the car more.)

    The hard braking hellped for a week or so but the squeak is back worse than ever. I'll be calling the dealership again but wanted feedback from anyone else who might have experienced this.

    Also, I notice an intermittent humming sometimes from my right rear wheel after driving and parking the car. Anyone else experience this?
  • altair4altair4 Posts: 1,469
    First, take the wiper off the car. Rotate them 90 degrees on their pivot point and they slide right off the pin (I wouldn't do this job while they're on the car - you might damage something else).

    You just use a pair of needle nose pliers to pull off the end cap (I suggest wrapping some cloth or a paper towel around it, to prevent marring). I seem to recall that they needed a pretty good tug to get them off. Get a good grip and just pull!

    Then you will see on one end a small metal tab that's bent to hold the original rubber in place. Slightly unbend that tab with the pliers to release the rubber, then slip out the old rubber. Slide in the new rubber, cut off any excess, re-bend the metal tab, and slip the end caps back on. The job's finished!
  • I am convinced that we have bought a lemon. Have had the car to the dealer more times than I care to remember, they know me by name. Anyone else having as many problems? We bought the car 5/02 here's the service history:
    8/27/02-replaced coil #4
    9/30/02- replaced passenger side headlight
    12/9/02-replaced coil #2, replaced left front low beam harness
    12/10/02- replaced coils 1+3 assured us we had all new coils
    2/21/03-replaced front headligh wiring harness and made new grounds for low beams
    4/7/03 replaced coil #1 again! assured us we had all new coils again!
    5/14/03 replaced headligh bulbs
    10/9/03 replaced passenger headlight, driver fog light, rear passenger and driver front turn signals
    2/10/04 replaced coil #3 again! and new catalytic converter
  • kazikazi Posts: 3
    My rear breaks squeaked when I bought my Passat new and then it went away. I recently put in new breaks and the rear squeaked again for about two to three months and then stopped squeaking.
  • I too have a 2002 Passat GLS; 5 spd man transmission.

    My dealer also knows me by name, as I have been in there WAY too often. I also experienced multiple coil problems...supposedly, I now have all new ones. I have had emissions problems twice. I have had a loud squeak over the right tire - spring related.

    At first, the dealer was very accomodating and made repairs swiftly. Now, they are a living nightmare to deal with.

    I too feel my car is a lemon. I know many others who have Passats and have had no problems whatsoever.

    I am getting out of mine, only because it was involved in a car wreck - $6200 worth of front end damage....$4200 in parts alone.

    Love the look of the car, but just don't know if I can trust it anymore. Am looking at Subuaru Legacy's and Toyota Camrys. Toying with the idea of a 2004 Passat, but am VERY gunshy based off the above problems.

    Good luck with yours.
  • brnzbrnz Posts: 2
    I am still kicking myself for not coming to this message board before venturing into that minefield called "out of VWarranty". Sorry guys, it's a long one:

    2001 Passat 1.8T Turbo; Manual Tranny
    39,500 on the odometer.
    Maintenance, except for what appears below- just the standard oil changes, tire rotations. Nothing out of the ordinary. Ignition coil pack and rear fuel liner replaced, per specs of VWofA recall.

    2/11/204: MIL on; "Emissions Workshop" displays on console.
    2/12/204: Per Gossett VW in Alpharetta GA- a vacuum hose has failed. They show me where the hose is clearly compromised where it mates with the engine. Hose is basically a non-decsript rubber issue, diameter no larger than your pinkie-surrounded by a fabric webbing. Fault is not a fray as I would expect, but appears to be a clean cut right next to the securing clamp. No moving parts anywhere nearby to cause rubbing/abrasion.

    Advisor quotes me $400 for parts and labor. I keep pressing the advisor that I wanted only the failed hose replaced, not both (there are two such hoses) "Well sir, you never know when the other hose is going fail, besides- it would save you only $50". Advisor also points out rear passenger brake pads where in the initial phases of going into the rotors. I assumed the rotors could be rotated and pads replaced. Nope. Both have to replaced. VW's OEM rotors can't be machined. Another $400. Dealer gives me a loaner, with work to be completed the next day.

    2/13/2004 Noon: Car ready as promised. Invoice details two hoses, five clamps, a PUMP, 2 bulbs (?); 1 disk brake, 1 brake lining. Original service advisor was not anywhere to be found. Paid bill, drove away.

    2/13/2004 1:30PM: After returning to work - popped the hood (sorry, "bonnet") to discover NONE of the five clamps had been attached.
    2/14/2004: Left message in the original service advisor's voice mail to pull my records and call me on Tuesday.

    In summary- I feel it is *I* who has been "hosed" here. Clearly, work was done that did not need to be done, and in the case of the clamps- steam is coming out of my ears. The entire vacuum issue was built up only to build up a bigger invoice. My CC has been pinged $897.00

    Caveat to those about to come out of warranty: find a reputable, independent VW technician.

    I'm not even going to waste my time with VWofA. From what I have read on these boards, they are about as effective as catching water with a sieve. I'm going to give Gossett fair chance to resolve this. If resolution is not to my satisfaction- I'm going to file a grievance with AMEX. Think I have a chance? Anyone else have a similar story?
  • Well, in one day my car has gone down hill. At 7300 miles all was fine until last Monday when:

    1) My right side mirror cracked.
    2) When braking the car feels like it's pulsating.
    3) When idling the car makes a noise like a spoon hitting a pot continously (sorry, only way to describe it).

    Now, a few days later only the brake-pulsating feeling is happening. Does anyone have any idea as to what is causing problems 2 and 3?


    Carrie ~2003 1.8T GLS Passat AT, Candy White w/ tan leather interior~ carrying precious cargo Aidan (Graco Snugride infant seat) and Alyssa (Graco Turbo Booster seat)
  • I'm in the market for a used 2001.5/2002/2003 Passat sedan 1.8T. Redesigned model only, hate the early design.

    I have been carefully watching these boards for common problems etc. as well as the Jetta/Golf and also the Honda and Toyota.

    What's interesting is perception vs. reality. Honda and Toyota seemingly have these "get out of jail free" cards when it comes to shirking the wrath of quality issues. A good example I believe is the 99 accords with the tranny issues. I still think quality control is better than VW et. al. but I beleive in general it is on the decline in the interest of continuing profitability.

    OK so the Passat is built in Germany, my question to you well educated folks: is it reasonable to assume that, excluding the coil recall issue, i)the quality of 2001.5+ models exceeds that of the 1998-2001 models and if the answer is YES ii) you would strongly consider the redesigned 2005 passat (perhaps build year #2 which works some of the kinks out, make that 2006) based on your experience with the 2001.5+.

    PS: Could be viewed as a dumb question given that, over time, any model will improve if made long enough.
  • Well guys,
    I am taking the long weekend off from my new, used '98 1.8t Passat w/84k miles. I took it to the dealer to change timing belt/water pump/tensioners and 90k(?) maintenance check and the new factory replacement timing belt was faulty!? So, with the car tore all apart, they told me it would take several days to get a "good" timing belt delivered. I got a free rental so life isn't so bad - Toyota 4 runner.

    Oh, they told me the the rear brake pads are real thin. Since, I was as already shelling out $750 for timing belt & another3-400 for 90k, he told me I could probably get-by for a "little" longer on the brakes. I've done my research. I know the rear brakes go first on Passat & pads & rotors are $450 at the dealer. So, I wasn't real shocked. I would have prefer not to hear it though. Oh, but the dealer did say the car was in good shape otherwise!

    That's not what bothering me. What's bothering is my crazy alarm system. I open the door w/key cause I think my remote battery is weak and then alarm goes off when I try to start it! That's bothering me. Everything else, I strike up to maintenance. What's up w/the alarm systems. Should I just have them disconnect it or is it an easy fix?
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