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Volkswagen Passat Maintenance and Repair



  • Thanks. I took the car into the VW dealer today and they ran diagostics. Found the following fault codes:

    Motronic Engine Mgmt System

    Misfire recognized

    Cyl 1
    Misfire recognized

    Camshaft Position (CMP) Sensor
    Implausible signal


    Action taken:

    The ECM was reflashed and I guess that cleared the codes.

    Of course I really didn't know what that meant but upon some research it appears that the Engine Control Module (ECM) needed a software upgrade.

    So they performed that programming upgrade using SVM and evidently that fixed the car ???? We'll see. I am not optimistic.

    Do you have any thoughts on this one? That camshaft thing bothers me ...
  • we bought a blank key through eBay for about $50 and had it programmed by the dealer for an additional $90. Overall we saved about 40-50 bucks, the dealer wanted approx 220 for a replacement key. Yikes!!!
  • I have a 2000 Passat and the automatic shifter handle broke. The shaft it was on has a plastic piece coming out of the top that you have to lift in order for the shifter to move between gears. well that plastic piece broke i believe and does anyone no where i can go to replace that or fix it all. or let me know what that piece is.
  • altair4altair4 Posts: 1,469
    Did they program the key you purchased?
  • I need to replace the vacuum hoses and had read about using high-temp silicone hoses. Can anyone make a recommendation on this since I don't want to purchase the OEM crap they use for vacuum hoses? I can't seem to find it at the big auto stores but can find it online ( Any thoughts about what I should use?

  • Well I was only given one key when I first purchased the car and that key did not work nor the alarm. the key broke and I had to buy another one ($180) the new key only served to unlock my car and drive it. The other functions did not work, so I went back to the volkswagon dealer and they only responded that the alarm system was not working. They did not seem interested in helping me (Langan Volkswagon) they stated that they programed the key.
  • feilofeilo Posts: 128
    You will 3.5mm OD tubing and if you do all the vac hoses, ~10ft/3m is sufficient.
  • I'm finally getting the estimates on the timing belt/ water pump thing (at 85K on a 2003 Passat 1.8T) and want to move ahead - but the first estimate, from a respected foreign-car place, also adds the cost of replacing the 2 cam-crank seals with PTFE seals. The labor would cost. So -question - is it really necessary? It's being presented as preventive maintenance. i've never noticed any leakage.
    So: -- can I safely ignore this? Or not?

  • Funny you posted b/c my 2003 1.8T is still in the shop a week later b/c the Indy mechanic thought it was good "preventative maintenance" as well to replace the cam and crank seals. Well... I got it home and it was leaking oil. I spoke to the dealer and it was mentioned to me that this shouldn't need to be done (they don't do it). So the mechanic is tearing it all apart again. I'm quite upset over this b/c now who knows what he'll do in his quest to stop the leak; I'm afraid he'll start using some sort of adhesive or something like that in order to get it to stop. It might work in the short term but I'll be dealing with it later, I'm sure. I just purchased the Bentley's manual and it shows these 2 seals and mentions a special tool for removing and inserting the seals (I'm sure the mechanic does not have this tool). So if it's not fixed this time, it's off to the dealer to have it done and then small claims court to get my I'm sure $1000 returned for a dealer repair. BTW, mine never leaked a drop until this happened.
    So, my suggestion, don't let him touch the seals!
  • Thanks, vw 27278.... that clears that one up!

    Next question: the dealership says one should NOT use the metal-impeller water pump. (The foreign-car mechanic says one should.)
    According to the dealer, they've "heard a lot about the metal-impeller pumps leaking." So they stick with the "genuine VW part," which is plastic.
    According to the foreign-car mechanic, the plastic-impeller water pumps, which were also adopted by BMW, sometimes disintegrate, sometimes badly damaging the engine. So they only use metal-impeller pumps. They also charge a lot more.

    Who to believe? Anyone know anything definitive?

    Thanks again!
  • Brozhnik, I just got my Passat back and it was the cam seal that was leaking. I used OEM seals but the mechanic said he thought they were flimsy from the get-go. So he replaced the cam seal with an aftermarket which had a ridgid edge and an installer tool, too. I just find it hard to believe that the OEM part is to blame; my feeling is that he didn't use the tool initially and that was where the problem probably stems from. Oh well, we'll see what happens. He's a reputable mechanic, apparently.
    As for water pump, I replaced my with the aftermarket metal impeller one. I have read too many stories in multiple forums that recommend against the plastic impeller (I had mine returned to me after the new one was installed and it looked fine - I have nearly $100k miles on it). I had the whole timing belt kit (which I ordered online to save $$ - i can provide if you're interested).
    I'm no expert in any of these matters, but I have been reading many, many articles on these issues and went with what my gut told me. For your info, it cost me $350 for labor to install the whole timing belt kit (tb, water pump, stationary idler roller, serpentine belts, tensioner roller, and tensioner damper). And, this cost did include the seals. The dealer wanted $760, not including seals.
    So good luck on this and let me know what you decide. Oh yes, look at purchasing the Bentley's manual as you'll learn alot and know what questions to ask. I got it for $82 online.
    - Cheers!
  • altair4altair4 Posts: 1,469
    I was talking with the last tech at the dealer who worked on my car. He had no problem with using the metal impeller pump, but I'd have to get it elsewhere. We talked a bit about leaks. It was his feeling that it has more to do with no damaging/pinching/rolling the seal than anything else. I'm thinking I'm going with an indy on this when I get to that point, and see what they use. I'm hoping they use the metal impeller and will stand behind their work if a leak does appear.
  • Amsoil full synthetic has the proper oil listed for the
    Passat requirements.

    AMSOIL Synthetic European Car Formula is formulated to surpass the most demanding European specifications. It is recommended for European and North American gasoline or diesel vehicles requiring any of the following worldwide specifications:

    ACEA C3-04
    ACEA A3/B3-04
    ACEA A3/B4-04
    BMW LL-04
    Mercedes Benz 229.31, 229.51
    Volkswagen 502.00, 505.00, 505.01
  • altair4altair4 Posts: 1,469
    Just to clarify, none of the Amsoil products were on the actual "approved" oil list published by VWoA or AoA. I'm not saying it isn't the best thing since the Big Bang, I'm just saying it isn't on the list.

    If you are under warranty and don't want any squabbles, bear that in mind. However, having said that, using Amsoil with within the 5,000 mile max OCI, you probably won't have any sludge issues anyway.
  • shiposhipo Posts: 9,152
    Amsoil doesn't have even a single oil that is certified to meet any of the standards listed a couple of posts back, not one. Given the questionable veracity of their advertising, I have to wonder about folks who are willing to bet their engines on the truthfulness of Amsoil's oil specifications.

    FWIW, I wasn't directing this post at you, more to support what you were saying.

    Best Regards,
  • One thing I didn't know: I spoke to the parts guys at two different VW dealers and learned that VW no longer makes this part (water pumps for 2003 Passats 1.8t) - all they sell are remanufactured. One said he thinks the impeller is neoprene. The other said he didn't know, but it seemed to him (by feel) to be some kind of alloy, different from before. I guess I should ask VW of America....

    Anybody got any more info on this, though?
  • Hi - did you figure out what the problem was? I'm having the exact same issue on my 2002 1.8T passat. Thanks!
  • My temp gauge was doing the same thing and it's due to the coolant temp sensor. This is a very common problem. You can pick one up for about $20 online (not sure what the dealer charges). You can install it yourself by using the instructions found on Google (search for: install coolant temp sensor passat). It's a pain but it can be done. Good luck.
  • My a/c already went out on my 2007 Passat. Anyone else with this issue? I have waited more than a week for the part and it is still not in!
  • When starting my car, the clutch goes all the way to the floor and the starter feels like it is trying to move the entire car. After the car is started, the gear changing is smooth. I don't feel the car pulling when I am at a stop light either. Thoughts, suggestions anyone?
  • lane2lane2 Posts: 28
    Pat, I just purchased a 2007 Passat 2.0T auto trans wagon. Since it is a 4 cylinder, I never asked what grade gas it required. My manual says at least 87 octane but I have been told that it REQUIRES premium. What is really required? Boy do I feel stupid.
  • altair4altair4 Posts: 1,469
    Required? No. Recommended? Yes. And you might find that running 87 instead of 91/93 will actually give you less MPGs than premium. Depending on the price point of each grade, it might actually be cheaper to run premium.

    And let's look at the numbers:

    Let's assume 15,000 miles a year driving, $0.25 a gallon difference in price between 87 and premium (the current difference in my market), and 22 miles per gallon (EPA city rating) for the year. For ease of discussion, we'll assume the same MPG using either grade....

    So, you would use 681 gallons of fuel in a year. That's $170.25 difference between regular and premium a year, $14.19 a month, or $0.47 a day. Personally, I don't think that is price difference is that big a deal when you consider the price of the car.

    Also, if you fact in the efficiency difference that might exist, it could easily be a moot point. YMMV, in the truest sense of the phrase.
  • lane2lane2 Posts: 28
    Thanks a lot for the info. Will go with premium and see what mpg I get. Just wanted to be sure since I had read that running higher octane when not needed could screw up the computer metering. Will be taking two trips shortly, one about 300 miles and the other about 500 miles. Should be able to get an idea of what mpg I will be getting and how it performs.
  • I have a cracked CV boot on the driver's side of my 2003 1.8T Passat. My mechanic says to just replace the whole axle with an EMPI brand axle for the same cost of repressing, repacking the old joints, etc. Does anyone have experience w/ this? I don't mind putting on a new axle seeing that i have almost 100k on the current ones, but I hate to put a sub-standard axle on it. It seems to be a well known brand??
  • I've just had my 2000 Passat in the shop (at the dealer) for a myriad of issues (92K miles) but they can't seem to fix the engine noise. When I turn on the car, a high pitched whine comes from the engine. It last about 30 seconds and then winds down and disappears. It's been happening for about a month. The dealer said that they found a loose hose & replaced a clamp. Maybe someone has had this problem and can tell me what's wrong?
  • Sounds like the secondary air injection pump. Same thing happens with my wife's '00. Aside from slightly worse emissions, I don't believe it adversely affects performance. It's just annoying as hell.
  • Thanks for the info! I'll probably bring it back to the dealer one more time since I've already paid to have it fixed, and then just learn to live with it if it continues.
  • Those prices sound not bad because when I fixed the rear brakes, the shop charged me $500 including parts and labor. If you like DIY, you might have enough tools and strong jack.
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