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Volkswagen Jetta Maintenance and Repair



  • I too have this problem with my 2003 jetta and I've taken it to the dealer and 3 other shops and the problem is still there. At times I cannot shift out of park into drive, until 15 - 30 minutes of waiting. It's intermittent, but also drives me crazy, completely unreliable. Any ideas on how to repair this problem? Weather doesn't seem to be a factor and now I'm looking to just sell the car. Any advice would be appreciated.
  • I have a 2001 VW Jetta and just recently the EPC light in the dashboard came on. I have no idea what this means since I do not have an owner's manual. Now my car has died, whatever is going on drained the battery. Can someone tell me what this "EPC" light means?
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    EPC = electronic power control, I believe this serves the same pupose as the "check engine" light on other cars. You will need to have it scanned to find out what specific problem it is detecting. Battery problem may just be coincidence, I think EPC only has to do with functioning of the engine and emission controls.
  • I will say this about buying a car, no matter what you do or buy, there will always be a risk of getting a lemon. I will say as the owner of 3 vw's an 81 jetta, a 2001 and now a 2007 jetta, you really need to stick with the maint. schedules, as with any vehicle, and the next best thing is to find a well recommended german car mechanic. I say mechanic, because that is what they do, they are not into it for profit and usually are supporting their families not a boss. They are not only cheaper, but they know how the cars have evolved. I have found one here in central massachusetts and it is amazing the difference. All I will say is slam the door on a vw and tell me about the thud and then do the same on a a japanese car and listen for the echo.
  • EPC stands for Engine Power Control.. it could be on for numerous reasons from mass air flow errors to throttle controls.. your best bet is to see a mechanic or analyze the problem with a VAG reader..
  • Ok so I drive an 01 Jetta, and I'm having major problems!!

    1) My turn signal sound won't stop making the clicking noise even when the turn signal is off
    2) My car won't start correctly, I have to hold the key in the start position for about 45 seconds to get it to start.
    3) When the car does start it shakes really badly, and sometimes just shuts off
    4) Doesn't idle properly
    5) Today I was slowing down for a light, and it felt like my car shifted down into first and then wouldn't shift out to speed up when the light changed.
    6) Also my check engine light, won't go off

    So I am taking it to the mechanic tomorrow morning, but if anyone else on here has had these problems please let me know. (I am just worried as to how much the repairs are going to cost) The car is an automatic with 92,000 miles on it!!
  • My 98 jetta seems as though it needs transmission fluid. when its cold it has begun to act as though in neutral and then slam into gear upon a take off from a stop. this is an automatic transmission and has no trans dip stick. I usually do most of my own maintainance and have a Chilton manual for this vehicle. all the book tells me about the trans is that there are several different vehicle platforms and trans types but doesn't say how to identify. I spoke to the dealer and they said there was a sealed plug on the side of the trans. I found a small allen screw on the front of the trans as you look directly under vehicle from the front, next to the breather and right above the skid plate. the hole is to small to get my finger to check fluid and want to make sure this is the right place before I fill the wrong spot. If anyone can help me with some info I would really aprecciate it. Thanks
  • fpjdpfpjdp Posts: 10
    I have the same exact problem. What I found was that the vehicle has to go to a tranny shop for them to check the fluid by a computer. But who do you trust. I have yet to do this. If you find any other info Please let me know. Thanks :(
  • 2005 Jetta Station Wagon Smells Like Cat Urine Inside
    Mileage: 40,000 approx
    Engine Type: 4 Cylinder ?

    Hi There,
    My neighbor moved in about 3-4 months ago from Greenville, SC to SW Florida during the rainy season. After a month, her car began to smell like ammonia inside. I have sat in her car and smelled it and it is strong.

    She is blaming my cats. She says that they are spraying the tires and under carriage of her car because she transports her dog in the car.

    I am not so sure because:
    1) There is another dog owner in our p-lot and they have never approached me about this issue.

    2) I struggled with a cat pee smell in my own vehicle (1998 Dodge Dakota) for 5 years before I broke down and spent $1,500.00 to get the dash pulled, the carpet replaced, and the A/C problem fixed (The work was by Toyota Pre-Owned in Ft Myers,FL but it only lasted 2 years and the carpet crystals are back - another story).

    3) I own a portable black light that came with the product Urine Gone. I have repeatedly checked the tires and undercarriage of her car and do not see anything.

    Can you let me know if this is a problem that other VW Jetta wagon owners have had?

    The owner refuses to get the mechanical aspect of this issue checked due to "cost" but she is demanding that I keep my indoor/outdoor cats inside and pay for her vehicle to be cleaned.
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 18,337
    Sounds like the two of you are in a P---ing contest almost totally unrelated to specfic VW maintenance and repair, other than it happens to be a VW wagon. It also does not appear to be your problem. But I would agree, it is not considerate to let pets do their business which inevitably affects someone elses property. You'd probably be more than miffed if she had animal control set a trap and your pets were in it and carted off to the local euthanasia station, for claim check, count down and eventual disposal. :(
  • Thank you ruking1 for the punny vote of confidence!

    I have been piecing my life back together here after being kicked out of my home by hurricane Charley in when this first came up, I was super busy. We both agreed to try cat repellent. I bought it for her ($15.00) and then she said she didn't want to try it. So, I have a friend who offered to power wash her vehicle underneath with Ammonia followed by Murphys Oil soap, and she declined that offer too.

    I have pointed out that there are many cats in the neighborhood. I have asked her basic questions like, has she ever seen my cat spray her car? No. She says she has (4) witnesses, but she won't go so far as to say that they actually saw my cat pee on her car. The first time she brought it up, she said one of them told her that she had seen my cat walking by the tires...another "witness" saw my cat by her gate. It's all a bit thin.

    My cats are learning to live inside night and day for the next 2 months. I could just imagine her cleaning her vehicle's carpets the week before the 2 months is up and telling me that everything is allright as long as my cats stay indoors.
  • cosmocosmo Posts: 203
    Bottom line is that cat owners are inconsiderate. Cats turn an entire neighborhood into a communal latrine, kill song birds and other native fauna just for enjoyment, and spread disease to children and pregnant women. A cat's only positive contribution is to provide unconditional positive regard to the owner who cannot develop that virtue in his/her relationships with other humans. Whether your cats are causing the smell in your neighbor's Jetta is actually irrelevant. She has every right to demand that you keep your vermin off her property.
  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    I could just imagine her cleaning her vehicle's carpets the week before the 2 months is up and telling me that everything is allright as long as my cats stay indoors.

    So what. What makes you think it is okay for your pets to roam the neighborhood? People with cats, dogs, or whatever should keep their pets on their own property.
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Your sweeping generalizations are unfair and inaccurate and there is no reason to refer to family pets as "vermin".

    That said, it seems everyone, including the cats, would be better served in this situation if they became indoor cats. I know it's a difficult adjustment, but it would certainly solve the problem and keep the cats safer at the same time.

    Personally, I don't think grayson has any reason to foot the bill for anything unless someone can offer absolute proof his cats are responsible.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 57,371
    How can a cat damage a locked parked car? I don't get it. I guess if it's a lion, it could scratch the paint? :P

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  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    The neighbor says they are spraying the tires and underside of the car.
  • Not a problem Cosmo (I like how we share part of our names:). Everyone is entitled to an opinion but what I like best is getting responses. It has been a wild 3 years trying to put it all back together since H-Charley.

    If it helps, normally, my cats are out for 1 hour in the morning, then they come back in and sleep all day. Then they go out for 2-3 hours after dinner and come back in and sleep all night. I don't let them out in the morning when it is dark, because I don't want them to attack the bunnies. I've never saved or buried a bird during the evening time, and Tiger does kill rats - which we get a lot. :) I donate to the Center for Rehabilitation of Wildlife on Sanibel Island whenever I can.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 57,371
    Rolling my eyes :sick:

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  • I have a leak on my 2000 Jetta 1.8T in one of my expansion tank hoses, the problem I am having is identifying what the hose actually is.
    It come directly off of the expansion tank and Plugs into a caseing,I am not speaking of the typical upper and lower water hose, this is a pressurized hose that runs from the expansion tank and travels under the car and follows the frame work to about the middle of the car itself on the under side, I need to know what type of hose this is and what its purpose is so I can pruchase it when needed.

    I have done work on all my Hondas and have never seen anything quite like this as there are a total of 4 hoses that go into the casing it is a much much smaller hose and extremely long.

    Please any Help would be great.

    Jason Burroughs
  • Hi,

    I have a 2002 Jetta, automatic transmission with ~67,000 miles on it. Just this Saturday I noticed the gears were slipping (making a jerking sound) when thecar shifted from 1st to 2nd gear.
    I took the car to the shop that my family has gone to for some years. They told me it could be either that the transmission fluid needed to be flushed or that there was a problem with the transmission. They were about to close so the owner asked me to bring the car Monday morning to flush the transmission fluid. Well on Sunday the jerking/kick back noise got a lot worse, and
    the check engine light went on too. This morning the repairman told me the error he got was P1778 indicating the transmission is no good anymore.

    So it looks like I need a new transmission.
    My warranty information said the Powertrain warranty is good for 5 yrs/60,000 miles. Has anyone else had similar experiences/problems? Any luck in getting VW to cover the cost of changing the transmission. Or does anyone know of a good place to get the transmission replaced that isn't too expensive in the Washington DC area?. I hear transmissions can cost ~$4000-5000

    By the way I looked up error code P1778 and supposedly it means "Solenoid EV7 Electrical Malfunction" - what does this mean? Does it actually mean the transmission is bad?

  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    I have no idea what this solenoid EV7 is, but I seriously doubt there is any code that would tell you enough to determine that the transmission needs to be replaced.

    I'd see if you can find someone who knows a little more about transmissions and/or VWs.
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    I have never seen a VW with an antifreeze hose that runs from the xpansion tank UNDERNEATH the car. Why would antifreeze be piped under the car? Also, where is the "return line" so there will be flow?

    With a front-wheel-drive, there is not much twards the rear of the car except fuellines and brakelines. (Neither of which would plug into xpansion tank.)

    Perhaps you can tell us WHERE this hose you are following plugs into underneath the car?

    There is an electrical connector which plugs into the side of the xpansion tank. The early 2000s had a known problem with this connector leaking antifreeze at the tank. (but the wire did not go under the car.)

    I have my Bently VW service manual open in front of me. The ONLY small hose that I see is the one that feeds coolant from the "watercooled EGR" to the top of the xpansion tank. Is this the hose you are thinking of? This hose constantly "pees" coolant into the tank while the engine is running.
  • I have to tell you. I am so grateful to have folks to talk to about this. Even if there are no simple answers and not everyone agrees with me. This whole deal is so cool. :)
  • gjj513gjj513 Posts: 2
    I bought my 97 Jetta GLX last summer and found the radio in SAFE mode (no owners or radio manual came with car). Found this site and followed bpeebles instructions. Took my car to the VW dealership and they pulled the radio and gave me the code for FREE (Denver, CO). Followed bpeebles instructions and got the radio playing the first time! I put the code and instructions in the glove box for future reference.

    Just took the Jetta in for 80K checkup (now in Austin, TX) and found the radio in SAFE mode again. No worries! I had the code and instructions. Guess what. Cannot get it out of safe mode.

    I drove around for more than an hour with the radio on and still couldn't get it out of safe mode. Today, I left the radio on and the keys in the ignition for three and half hours. Still can't get it out of safe mode.

    1. Should I disconnect battery cable and reconnect and try radio again? or,
    2. Should I pull the radio out of the dash and put it back in to try to "fool it."

    Or... any other recommendations. I love this car and take good care of it.
  • I am interested in trying a three step process in an attempt to improve my average 20 mpg that I get with this VR6. I purchased the car for my daughter about a month ago and have been a bit disappointed in the fuel economy. Maybe this is all I should expect, but if these three things will clean and possibly improve fuel mileage, I will give them a try.

    First, I cleaned the mass air flow sensor in an attempt to make sure that the air flow measurement is correct to adjust fuel / air mixture ratio. That went well, and easy.

    Second, I would like to check the engine coolant temperature sensor to ensure that the fuel / air mixture is set correctly. I know of no way to do that without the Vag Com software that reads the diagnostic codes. Is there another way to check that the sensor is operating properly?

    The third item is to use a fuel injector cleaner. I am trying Sea Foam. The directions indicate that it can be added to the tank, which I did just now. The can also be added through the main vacuum line. Is it important to add this through the vacuum line rather than just through the fuel tank?

    Anyone had any luck with these or other attempts at improved fuel economy?
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    I would try your option #1.... disconnect the battery for several minutes (or hours) to make sure the capacitors in the radio drain.

    Then, after reconnecting battery, try the SAFE mode sequence again.
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    One common reason for poor MPG is dragging brakes. To check for this problem, use jack in trunk to lift each wheel one at a time. You should be able to spin them all by hand. (Emergancy-brake NOT on and in neutral so BLOCK NON-LIFTED WHEELS!)

    Each of my 2 daughters have a 2001 VW (Golf and a New Beetle) I just PMd (preventive-Maintainced) them both in preperation for the winter. Before I started, the wheels were almost impossible to spin by hand. When I was done with PMing the brakes, the wheels would spin pretty freely by hand.

    Both of my daughters have noted at least 30 more miles by 1/2 tank of fuel. (They ALWAYS fill the tank so they can guage relative MPG pretty well)


    As for your comment about checking the coolant temperature sensor -- if it is not a GREEN one, replace it. (only $14) If is a green one, then it is likely OK.

    The VAG software cannot really "check" that the sensor is accurate. It can only tell you what it 'thinks' the sensor is telling it. What you can do is check the antifreeze temparature with an accurate digital thermometor and compare that reading to what the VAG software is telling you.
  • I have read about the green temperature sensors in other comments so I will give it a try. My Haynes manual does not address the 2.8L engine.. can you help with the location of the temperature sensor?
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Keep us posted! :)
  • You most likely are low on fluid. And don't listen to VW when they tell you the transmission is sealed and the fluid would never need to be added/replaced (been there and done that with my '97. The fluid has to be a certain temperature to be able to tell if it's low or not. Hence the reason for the computer. Call around to local mechanics or a specialized VW shop to see if they will check it for you.
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