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VW Jetta Electrical Problems



  • How much was that O2 sensor and did you instal it yourself?
  • I have a similar problem. I bought my car used with 44K miles and there is a battery drain problem. The first very obvious problem is the brake light randomly comes on. I can shut them off only by pumping the brake pedals. But obviously overnight, I cannot pump the brakes so in the morning the batter is drained. There is no indicator light reflecting a problem. VW claims to never have heard of such a problem. Have you fixed your issue? I don't know what it is. Also, VW claims that the trunk latch on these Jettas commonly wear out. I cannot get the trunk to latch sometimes and they claim that they may also be a contributing issue. Have any thougts?
  • I notice that many of you all purchased your Volkswagen pre-owned. For those that did did you also purchase an extended warranty? I purchased one with my VW 06 Jetta with 44K miles, but the one that 5Star (not a VW dealership) sold me did not cover the issues that I am having like a trunk latch that refuses to latch until I start jumping on the trunk until it latches (just kidding, but I do have to slam it a couple of times). So, now I am considering switching to the VW warranty coverage. Should I even consider the warranty? It's fairly inexpensive. Or is this just another way VW is also going to screw me out of money?
  • I am having the same issue with my 2001 Jetta GLX, in the past i have been able to remove and replace the fuses and it repaired the issue, but that won't work this time. Any luck with repairing yours?
  • :confuse: I bought my car used with 44K miles and there is a battery drain problem. The first very obvious problem is the brake light randomly comes on. I can shut them off only by pumping the brake pedals. But obviously overnight, I cannot pump the brakes so in the morning the batter is drained. There is no indicator light reflecting a problem. VW claims to never have heard of such a problem. Have you fixed your issue? I don't know what it is. Also, VW claims that the trunk latch on these Jettas commonly wear out. I cannot get the trunk to latch sometimes and they claim that they may also be a contributing issue. Have any thougts?
  • I'm new to this forum ... scary to read down through all the electrical questions! I played with the search options on the forum page, but did not find reference to my question:
    I have a '98 Jetta TDI, 181,000 mi, owned since new. Other than glowplug and engine check-light issues, no electrical problems up till now. When I start the car, the headlights and the blower fan motor will not turn on. If I turn off the ignition and immediately restart it, both the headlights and the blower fan motor then operate as normal. This is an intermittent occurrence and has happened three times in the last four days. I am concerned that it will turn from intermittent to permanent and that eventually, restarting the ignition will no longer resolve the problem.
    Has anyone had a similar occurrence they have resolved, or can anyone offer advise on how to best diagnose and repair such a problem.
    When the headlights and blower fan motor do not operate, both low beams and high beams are affected, but the running lights, turn signals, and brake lights operate as normal. Blower fan does not operate at any of the speed settings. Fuses are all O.K. It is possible that I may not have yet noticed other affected electric things in addition to the headlights and the blower fan motor, but everything else seems O.K. I'll check for more affected things the next time it occurs.
    Thanx for any input.
  • :sick: 1990 2.0 Jetta. have 12v going into the coil, New coil, ignition module, and spark plug wires. Getting fuel, good crank but no start. What am I missing????
  • vwdawgvwdawg Posts: 162
    philli: Are you getting spark at the plugs? Take out a plug, reattach it to the plug wire, ground it to the engine, have someone crank the engine and check to verify that you're getting spark. All those new electrical parts aren't necessarily good. Let us know what you find out. vwdawg
  • :sick: No. We checked the juice coming out of the connector to the coil and it is getting 12v. We checked the 3 pins to make sure they were good. No juice is coming out of the coil and it is brand new. We also unplugged the positive battery cable and cycled the ecu relay. Any suggestions from here?
  • aukid07aukid07 Posts: 2
    I have a 97 Jetta that will not fire once prolonged rain has occurred. It turns over, but will not spark. Is the problem moisture in the distributor? If it is, are there any suggestions on how to stop that?
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    A common problem on these cars, that would have those symptoms, is the ignition coil. The plastic housing can develop a hairline crack that will let moisture in. You can test this theory by spritzing the coil with some mist when the car is running and see if it starts to stumble or dies. I think the coil is on the firewall (that is where it was on my son's 1996, IIRC).
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    edited March 2010
    If problem is the coil... use WD40 as temporary fix... after all the reason WD40 was invented for the military was to displace water on wet ignition systems. (WD = Water Displacer)

    As a longer-term fix, to avoid paying for a $200 ignition-coil... Some folks have reported good luck in sealing the hairline cracks in the ignition-coil. This may get you a couple more years out of the coil.
  • jcfraynejcfrayne Posts: 1
    did you ever find out the problem, my daughters car has same issue and I replaced the fuel pump relay with no luck
  • aukid07aukid07 Posts: 2
    It rained hard yesterday, the car would not start. I went outside and sprayed the ignition coil with WD-40 as suggested, and sure enough, it started right up. I'd give that a shot if I were you.
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    I am glad that I was able to help you isolate the problem.

    A lot of people dont even know that the WD in WD40 means "Water Displacer"

    It is said that the inventer of WD40 went thru 39 other formulas before coming up with the current one....(the 40th try) Then after all that work, the Milatary awarded the contract to another bidder.

    Concenquently, not being a quitter, he marketed the stuff as "WD40" to the public and it has done pretty well.
  • shashi13shashi13 Posts: 2
    I have a 2001 Jetta GLS, and when the accelerator is pressed, the dash backlight, the speedometer, gas level indicator, temperature indicator, radio all lose power. When the car is stationary everything is normal. Could some one please help me with this, I appreciate any input.
  • bobbi141bobbi141 Posts: 1
    At 47,000 miles electrical problems started with drivers side door...window was open and would not close..outside temp 15F....drove 60 miles and found after getting home, interior lights and headlights and mirror lights would not shut off,,,,11:00 pm,,,had to disconnect battery. VW replaced harness in drivers door ($350.00) two weeks ago...Today, rear left passenger door locks do not work from inside but get outside and door opens but not with keyless entry....wipers go on for no reason at all and alarm goes off in garage in the middle of the day or worse,,,,,at night....
  • che02che02 Posts: 1
    Hi i bought my son a 2000 jetta,it has been a total nightmare it has 160k miles.Well here are all the problems,new battery 2mo.ago starter 2mo.ago now it won't turn over, if you let it sit for a couple of days it will start but after a while it won't start,and now the windows,interior lights,wipers won't work
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    Check if that vehicle has the dreaded Coolant Migration problem
  • ops2ops2 Posts: 6
    Two or three times now in the last several weeks when I've turned on the radio there is nothing on AM. Static from 550-1700. FM seems a bit fuzzy, but not sure. CD-plays fine, Sirius worked fine. Cycling the power on the radio did nothing. Worked fine the next time I started the car. Going in for first 10K here shortly, so will bring it up, but was wondering if anyone had had/heard of similar issues. (This is the non-nav system set up)
  • vwdawgvwdawg Posts: 162
    Hello All: I need to replace a bad right side front upper control arm. The nut on the pinch/clamp bolt came free easily, but it seems the bolt itself is completely frozen (eight winters of Minnesota road salt tend to do that). I've soaked the bolt with PB Blaster, tried turning the head of the bolt with a big ratchet, hit the threaded end with a hammer, and even heated the bolt with my MAPP torch (protected the rubber seal on the good rear bushing with a wet rag, of course). All to no avail. I've now wrapped the entire assembly with a small rag and it's been soaking in PB Blaster for several days...hoping for the best. Has anyone else found a good solution for this ugly problem? Appreciate any comments. vwdawg
  • aj916aj916 Posts: 1
    The driver's door does not activate the door ajar panel light. All the other doors do. I need to find out what activates the door ajar indicator because none of the manuals I've looked through references it.
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    edited April 2010
    There are 3 micro-switches INSIDE the door mounted on the latch/lock mechanism. It is not uncommon for one of the micro-switches to become unsolderd from vibration. These These micro-switches are BURRIED inside the door and are not easy to access.

    There are reams of information about this on the net if you do a search. Here is a link to detailed photos of the door interior.
  • alohaveedubalohaveedub Posts: 6
    edited May 2010
    Jetta has about 52k miles on it, no problems and regular maintenance done. About a month ago it started to stutter a bit on starting and then the automatic window buttons would not work for ~30s. Then the radio started not working for same short period of time after starting. After 30s everything is fine. Just recently the clock started displaying completely wrong times and the "blackout" period on the door panel and radio last longer. I did just clean some oxidation off the + terminal on battery which had been there a while. But that cleaning did not change the symptoms. Any ideas? Thanks.
  • gaals9999gaals9999 Posts: 1
    I have the same problem with my '97 jetta suddenly. did you ever get any reply or information on what to do? I cannot find any connection between these two systems on the electrical schematics, so I am at a loss for now.

  • shashi13shashi13 Posts: 2
    If you have the same problem that I was having, the voltage regulator on your alternator is defective. When you accelerate, the charging voltage on the battery should not exceed 13 to 14 Volts. I was getting 22. One way to confirm that it is the regulator would be to turn on all your heated seats and anything that is electrical inside the car. Now if the dash lights and radio remain on, you need a regulator for your alternator. I did not want to take a chance so I replaced the alternator. Everything works fine now.
    Hope this helps.
    If you are able to disassemble the regulator, it is worth a try to just order that. but that would be your decision
  • I have a 97 Jetta, for the last couple of years the door losw were broken, the tumblars would come out with thekey! The other day the alarm engaged, I tried using the interior door lock button, that did not work I disconnedted the battery and that did not reset the alarm.
    Does any one have any ideas on what I can do.
    Is there a way to disconnedt the alarm so that I can start my car.
    any help would be much appriciated.
  • I seem to be having similiar problems with the exception of the radio. I have 39,950 miles on mine. Were you able to figure out what the problem was/is?
  • new battery solved it. I had some corrosion on the positive batt terminal for perhaps 20k miles. I would clean it, and it would come back, gradually. It was a leak of some sort on the batt. Have someone check your batt amperage, it should be rated for 600 cca. Mine tested at 176 cca. New batt solved it.
  • jmr813jmr813 Posts: 6
    I have had similar issues appear on my 2006 Jetta 2.5 (~45k miles) recently. I took it to the dealer for something completely unrelated, and when I picked it up they said they had replaced my ignition coils as part of the recall. It was only after they replaced the ignition coils that I started noticing the 'stutter' on startup, and even then it's not every time. It's maybe every 4th or 5th time I start the car. Like you said, it stutters and takes a few seconds, but if I just keep the key turned, it starts. Then, as you mentioned there is an approximately 30 second delay before any window buttons work, and the radio always comes back on in CD mode, no matter what it was in before.

    This is going to make me sound stupid - but is the battery corrosion and amperage easy to check? I am SO not good with cars and pretty much take mine to the dealer or repair shop for everything. I just assumed it was related to the ignition coil replacement since it didn't start until after that, but your post describes my problem almost exactly, so I'm having second thoughts!
  • it shouldn't be tood bad. The battery has a plastic cover that snaps off, and you can easily see corrosion, which should be on the "+" terminal. The terminal should be red, the corrosion should be white to bluish crystals. Ignition coil is almost certainly unrelated, just something they replace because of VW recall. You'll have to take your car to a shop to get the CCA checked. The corrosion, if it is present, would definitely affect the amperage, but the amperage could still be low without their being corrosion. Hope this helps. It fixed my car like a charm. Good luck.
  • :cry: I inherited a 97 VW Jetta GLS and am experiencing problems with the security alarm going off.

    I am still trying to pay off credit card debt from college, etc. and cannot afford to keep dumping money into the car unnecessarily and cannot afford a new one either.

    One day last week my trunk light indicator showed my trunk was ajar when it was not, I checked it and still would not go out.

    I drove it the same day then could not get my trunk to open using the button by the driver seat? So, I had to use the keys to open it.

    Then I went to lock the car and the alarm system went off, I could not disengage it using the car door lock, so stood there until it went off by itself, but could not get car to start due to security system had locked engine.

    I ended up having it towed (another bill I could not really afford) to dealer who advised me that I could use trunk lock to disengage the security system.

    Ok, I did not have them diagnose car any further because I am broke, so I left and have been driving it since, but have not been locking my doors for each time I do I have same problem the alarm goes off and have to use the trunk key to turn it off.

    I also have noticed that my clock resets itself each time I now start the car?

    Is all of this related??? I know nothing about cars, which is another reason I have gotten into so much debt for I trusted several different auto repair places to keep my car running for I need it to keep my job.

    Any ideas/help/advise would greatly be appreciated. Thank you.
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    edited July 2010
    You asked "Is all of this related???"

    It sure sounds like it is related. The security system checks that all the doors, trunk and hood are latched before it will "arm". If the micro-switches on any of these are 'flakey', then the alarm system may not work properly.

    For now, since you are on a low budget, the only recourse may be to not set the alarm.

    I am concerned that your clock resets every time you start the engine. This suggests that the battery may have dirty connections or may be bad. A weak battery could cause ALL the other issues you are experiencing.

    Many autoparts stores will check your battery for FREE. (Autozone.... etc)
  • aubry177aubry177 Posts: 1
    I have a 2002 Jetta, 114K miles. I took it into the dealership and they are still trying to find out what is wrong. It started with the radio flickering on and off, then the dashboard info would reset (the time and trip mileage) on it's own. Then, the car's electrical would very quickly turn off and on and cause the dashboard info to restart and radio flicker off and on. Now, my car just turns off. I will be waiting at a light or waiting to turn and my car turns off. The engine is off but the auxillary is on, like when you turn the key one click. So I have to put it back in park, turn the key off then back on again and it starts right up. I have a new battery so it's not that. Not the starter or alternator. Luckily my car doesn't turn off while driving....yet. Also, I'll open my car door to get out and my alarm starts going off. The dashboard makes a clicking sound too after I turn it off while the key is in the ignition. Hopefully the dealership can replicate it and fix it as my normal mechanic and VW mechanic couldn't fix it and said i have to go to the dealer as it could be hte cluster.
  • bigtwinbigtwin Posts: 1
    Factory alarm triggers after turning off by key in driver door. Can only shut off by removing negative terminal. Have located black control module attempted to jumper around system but horn and lights still flashing. Have located horn under wiper assembly. One set of wires from drivers side, two wires on pax side of horn . Can
    this horn be disabled , I believe I pulled the correct fuse but horn still active. Recharged battery but no difference.The key will not shut off alarm at all. The power windows now open by themselves, no control at all.Any ideas on disarming this possessed machine would be appreciated.
  • I have a 06 VW Jetta that is having a problem. I am getting the display on my dash saying that my driverside door is open when it is not. The door closes completely but it will not let me roll the windows down or set the alarm with the vehicle thinking the door is open. Any solutions
  • bingo54bingo54 Posts: 1
    my 96 jetta has had the usual stall out when it rains problem and some dry wire or wd-40 has always worked. However, 3 weeks ago we had a big rain and though the car didn't do its usual stall after I parked for 20 minutes It wouldn't restart. the engine cranks. I took it to my mechanic who is very good with foreign and german cars. He said the spark was intermittent so changed the coil. Now all he gets is a 2-3 sec turn over and then it dies. He says he is baffled which for him to say is rare. He says the car is getting fuel. Anyone have any ideas, I'd like to get the car back...
  • 2jetta2jetta Posts: 1
    edited August 2010
    On my 2002 Jetta 1.8T, the digital clock, hour digit, continues to advance, counting up to 12 and then starting over. Thinking the clock adjustment knob was stuck I tried turning it all directions to no avail. If I turn the right signal light on the clock stops advancing. As soon as the signal light is turned off the advancing continues. The clock continues to advance even after the car is turned off. On another forum with the similar problem the individual disconnected the battery and reconnected but no change. Any ideas?
  • jmr813jmr813 Posts: 6
    Just wanted to let you know that a new battery fixed the problem completely! I took it to O'Reilley, they checked and said it was "most definitely bad", replaced the battery for me, and I haven't had an issue since!

    Of course....that was a few weeks ago and now my check engine light is on. Grrrrrrrrrrr. I love this car to death, but if it's not one thing, it's another!!
  • well I am glad that at least it starts. The check engine light is just related to mileage and is to prompt you to do a service every 20k or so. Nothing wrong, probably.
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    I am pretty certain the check engine light is not turned on based on miles on the odometer. However, I would not rush in as it may go off again after a couple of days.
  • My 98 volkswagen jetta lights were left on. Jumped started it but transmission would disengage when driving. It would crank then and run but acted like transmission was out.Dis connected cable,turned key then replaced cable and after a few days car began running normal but would not crank with out jumping. Now it will not crank with out jumping and will not go over forty miles per hour. have exhausted ideas. Can anyone help?
  • I have a 2001 jetta TDI. When I turn the key to start the car , the horn comes on and won't shut off. I don't think it is a security alarm issue as that turns on separately in conjunction with the horn. I pulled the fuse and that took care of the horn problem ,but of course no horn, but the security system still works. Any ideas?
  • In the old days that would clearly be a distributor cap problem. Does a 96 still have one? If not,whatever it's been replaced with would be the place to look.
  • having similar issues with my 2005 Jetta - went to get gas and fuel door switch would not work. Little by little everything controlled by the driver side door electrical panel stopped working! Any ideas out there?
  • I've got a 2006, and similiarly I've got issues with the electrical connection to the front driver side door. Sometimes the lights don't even come on like normal which makes it look like the battery is dead but once the ignition is turned everything comes to life. There is also a light at the bottom of the door that comes on and sometimes it's flickering. This car just has too much electrical components!
  • joe303joe303 Posts: 1
    Having the sameproblem. How did you resolve the clock spinning?
  • This morning an indicator light came on that shows the back of the car with what looks like the gas cap unscrewed. I know the cap is on and tight and is not loose. Would you happen to know what that means? I bought the car used so I don't have the owner's manual.
  • Hey I'm having that same issue.. did the dealer ever fix the problem? What did it end up being? I'm thinking I'm going to end up selling the car for something else soon because I hate all the problems it's had.. Def a love hate relationship..
  • check the CCA on your battery. Perhaps a super quick diagnosis would be to look at your battery terminals, is there corrosion? If so, it is leaking acid and if it has been doing that for some time, it has lost power. If that's the case, it could be affecting the electrical system and causing the problems you're having. That IS what was wrong my with 2005 Jetta and now it's good as new.
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