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Volkswagen Jetta Maintenance and Repair



  • jodar96jodar96 Posts: 400
    Thanks for responding. My son't Jetta ended up being a bad starter and was strong 98% of the time. I paid $270 to an independent shop for taking apart and cleaning all electrical connection under steering wheel and under the battery tray. I had the mechanic have the car for about 8 days and drive it every day and on weekends. It never acted up fo him. he had read and cleared all the stored codes. They thought it was the fuel pump relay, but did not want to replace it unless they determined it was the problem.

    After I picked up the car, two weeks later, it acted up again. The mechanic that worked on it, came to my house and did all his tests and determined it was the starter. I replaced the started myself, $180 new with lifetime warranty from Napa. The car has been fine since then.

    Electrical problems are tough to diagnose and I am not worked up about spending $270 and not them finding the problem the first time.

  • fws4fws4 Posts: 5
    My '00 Jetta simply shut down while driving and will not restart. Starter spins with strange noise, high pitched with a squeak when it stops. Replaced the timing belt and water pump - the timing belt was missing 6-8 inches worth of teeth. This did not fix the problem. The enging turns, maybe a little slowly - I can see the timing belt turn since I left off the upper cover for now. Same noise mentioned above. My next step would be the starter, but since the engine is turning...? Could the starter be 'weak' or binding, resulting in the noise? Also, the engine was about 1.5 quarts low on oil, a problem getting worse as mileage goes up (currently 190k miles), and I've had an antifreeze leak due to that wonderful Dexcool, but no sign of it in the oil. Any help appreciated.
  • Thanx much!! I have my manual but guess I missed a lot of that. Draining the water from the filter every 5000 mi?!?!? OOOOpp!! Now I know!! I'm learning a lot here!!
  • Awesome info, thanx!! :shades:
  • I am having this same issue with my 2000 Jetta V6. Does anyone have any suggestions?

    Re:My VW Jetta GLS (automatic) is giving me a new issue today. It started hesitating while the "Check Engine" light blinked continuously. As I was driving the car it would hesitate and would have a hard time accelerating and then at times it felt like it would finally shift into gear and would start driving normally again only to once again continue with the same pattern of hesitating, etc. When I would stop at a light it kept vibrating and hesitating. Do you all have any idea what issue I may be having?
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    A blinking CEL is a sign of IMMENENT DAMAGE to some component of your drivetrain. (Like unburned fuel getting into the catalyst thus burning it to a crisp.)

    From your description of "vibrating and hesitating"...that sure sounds like one of the cylinders is not firing. A misfiring cylinder could send unburned fuel into the exhaust system.

    A CEL which is just "ON" is considerd OK to drive while a vehicle with a BLINKING CEL should not be driven.
  • Hi I have a 2001 Volkswagen Jetta with a 2.0 Engine. The check Engine light came on late last year....but after many tune ups, many mechanics found nothing wrong with the car. I got a reading from an Emissions Test that said my system was too lean....I've run an Octane Boost and am currently attempting to run a full tank of 93 Premium BP gas through my engine. The light is still on. Why needs to be done at this point. What has usually been the case for 2001 VW Jettas?
  • My daughters ' 98 VW Jetta, will only shift if you let up off the gas. This goes for all gears. Once in gear it drives fine until the next gear up. All gears going down are found without any hesitation on the trans axle. Any help? Thanks.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 57,353
    bpeebles is right, this needs attention right away. Being a VW, one is tempted to toss off the suggestion of checking the ignition coils, as these are always suspect on a VW and they would cause this symptom. The codes should be read to verify this.

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  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 57,353
    I'd certainly start by checking the fluid level and if that's okay, have a transmission service done and see if that helps. Could be worn out internal seals, a sticking valve in the valve body, some kind of pressure issue....dunno without more testing.

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  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 57,353
    If the light is on, there should be a code stored in the computer. Ask them to clear the light, then when it comes on again, read the code. Might be as simple as an 02 sensor.

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  • I don't think it's the O2 sensor because today, I checked the spark plugs and they were all completely burned!!....I last time they were changed was in Fall 2007 I believe....maybe earlier..But it was definitely in spring or fall of 2007. After I did that...I reset the Check Engine light sensor and drove for about 50 miles. the light remained things are getting there...but now I went back to the auto parts store to have them hook their code computer to my car. The Too lean and Catalyst issues are not showing up anymore....but now there is a "Fuel Injector problem in Cylinder 2". The Technician asked if I had just put gas in my car...I told him that I put Premium 93 BP gas +Octane Booster in my car. He Said that that shouldn't trigger the Fuel Injector Code, though. However..THE CHECK ENGINE LIGHT IS STILL OFF!!!...So What do I need to do now?.....because I have a week left before I need to go back to the EMissions place to get my car retested for free before my tag expires. So Let me know ASAP!!! Thanks
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 57,353
    So the light's off...why can't you just get tested now?

    What exactly did you mean your spark plugs were "burned"? What color were the tips? Brown and crusty? Black? Gray ash-like? Were they all the same condition?

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  • Yeah, the plugs were a very dark brown and quite crusty. I believe it was time for them to be changed anyway....It had been about 60,000 miles since they were last changed. With it being an older model car...they probably should have been changed sooner. I'm going to just let the 93 premium fuel run through the system til Thursday to see how the check Engine Light is doing and to clean out the fuel system as much as i can. then I'll take it back to the emissions. Also, it's pretty cold in GA Right much does temperature play in all of this, you think?....
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 57,353
    Before you do an emissions test, you should have been running the car HARD and HOT on the highway. You can also buy this "pass emissions" snake oil and some techs tell me it can work in certain cases. They (the snake oil maker) give you your money back if you fail, so why not?

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  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    I would put MONEY on the fact that your MAF (Mass AirFlow) sensor is failing. There was a "factory extended warantee" on your MAF because VW knew there was a problem with MAF.

    BOTH of my daughters 2001 VWs had their MAF replaced for free under this "extended warantee".

    Since I have a VagCom , I was able to diagnose their bad MAF. (running lean and/or rich)

    One way to help diagnose a bad MAF is to disconnect the electrical wire and drive the car. If it runs better, the MAF is definatly bad.
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    Sparkplugs which are "dark brown and crusty" are NOT considerd "burnt".

    A "burnt" sparkplug would be bright white on the tip because everything except the ceramic has burned off of it.

    A competnet mechanic can "read" sparkplugs and determine a lot about the condition of an engine. (fuel mixture, rings, valvestem seals, ignintion system, fuel grade...etc)

    Too bad there are not many COMPETENT mechanics around anymore.... many of them just hook computer to car and have little clue how to REALLY diagnose a problem. Also, many of them are paid based on HOW MANY PARTS THEY SELL and not by HOW MANY CARS THEY FIX.

    I have always wanted mechanics to be paid based on FIXING a problem... (not on TRYING to fix it) 8-)

    With that said - If all of your sparkplugs look about the same condition, this DOES NOT point to an ignition nor a mechanical problem and instead points to somthing IN COMMON to all of the cylinders. (MAF sensor, O2 sensor...etc.)
  • Hey Thanks!!...I will look into that tomorrow. But I have the manual here and there are apparently two MAF sensors: LOW INPUT and HIGH INPUT

    Which one?....and how could you tell? there a separate electric wire for both of them?

    And What do you mean, "If it runs better..."? Because the car runs's smooth and shifts consistently for the most part...but the Auto Parts Store Computer Reading was giving the Too Lean/Fuel Injector problem how would I do that?.....would I run it without the sensor and see if the Auto Parts store Computer give the All systems Pass Reading (or whatever the technical term for all systems pass)?....Would the computer show the MAF sensor as "CANNOT BE READ" if I disconnect it?....Let me know....thanks....I seriously think this might be the problem.
  • Yeah...I will look into the MAF Sensor tomorrow....but if the spark plugs weren't bad....then why has the Check Engine Light gone off and STAYED OFF?....That's what baffled me.....even though the reading on the Auto Parts Store Machine said Fuel Injector problem. I thought long and hard about taking my Jetta to a VW dealer...but it would have been $106 just for a further examination and possible dianosis. I just wasn't sure I was up for that...what with being a College Student and all lol
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 57,353
    Once again, any diagnostic machine is only as good as the person using it. People are throwing parts at your car and hoping that one sticks, sounds like. Not being there, I can't start a "diagnostic tree", but basically such a "tree" is a system of logic wherein the...ahem...technician tests THIS, and if not THIS, then he/she goes to THAT....and if not THAT...and so on, starting from most likely to least likely based on the initial codes from the machine. Each THIS or THAT has a value to be read, or a function to be tested, to eliminate it or accuse it of the crime.

    So what i'm saying is that a code that says something like "misfire" or "bad injector" could be caused by many things, and the idea is not to replace all those things at once and then say "see, I solved it" (at the owner's great expense).

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  • jeffyscottjeffyscott Posts: 3,855
    the idea is not to replace all those things at once and then say "see, I solved it" (at the owner's great expense).

    But most of us are happier paying for new parts to be installed, than we are paying diagnostic charges, as in:

    it would have been $106 just for a further examination and possible dianosis. I just wasn't sure I was up for that
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 57,353
    The thing to do in that case is to work it out so that the diagnostic charges are subject to cancellation if the diagnosis proves to be incorrect.

    I'm certainly not going to pay for a wrong diagnosis. I can do that myself :P

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  • I am having power loss on my 1999.5 Jetta TDI.

    The whole story is important here probably. Head needed rebuilding, has new camshaft, timing belt, tensioners waterpump since it was all open. I also had the turbo actuator valve replaced (the bladder gizmo behind the engine). Right after that the turbo worked great, car ran like a dream for about a weak. I then noticed when the turbo would spool when at high RPMs that it would skip and then plop into limp mode. It has gotten progressively worse so that now it will drop off almost from the first acceleration in first gear. It will usually fix when the key is cycled.

    when I run the codes I get P0101 an P1550 (regular handheld jobby), and under the the Vag-Com there are also codes for the rear ABS sensors.

    So far to fix this issue I have replaced the Turbo Solenoid (up by the windshield with the hoses going to it), I have replaced the MAF....I have taken apart the hoses going to the air filter (all clear). I have visually inspected the vacuum hoses and though a little frayed don't see any breaks. The air filter is relatively new.

    The connector plug (that plugs into the MAF) is a replacement plug so it leads me to believe someone looked at replacing that before I came onto the scene. I am thinking I should check to make sure that is wired well...but what else should I try. Any advice, happen to anyone else? I am reaching the end of my wits thinking about it....need some things to check so I feel like I am sniffing out the problem....give me your best shot!

    Oh something else you should know. The engine light doesn't work it was somehow disconnected or blown, I wager disconnected so they could sell the car.
  • Prior to my car accident, I did not experience any issues with my car. A almost month after the accident, my coolant light came on. I couldn't even open the hood after the accident. I later got it to open and realized that the coolant tank was empty. Then I thought to myself I haven't heard my fans turn on in a while. Sure enough, the fans weren't turning on. I got my crappy insurance company to come pick up the vehicle and take it to one of the "approved" shops. A month later I pick up my car. I didn't like how they fixed my body kit, but I could deal with that sorta. 50miles down the road, my coolant light came back on. I looked and it was BONE dry. The shop towed my car back and for the first time a mechanic check my car. They call me back saying that there is a pin hole in some hose that has allowed air to get in. They then said it wasn't accident related and that I had to pay to the diagnosis. Is this possible for a pin whole is a hose to cause my fans not to turn on and my coolant to leak out at the point of impact? I just know that my car was in perfect working order prior to the accident, no lights indicating problems and regular check ups. Can someone help me understand please...
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    The key here is your mention of replacing (the bladder gizmo behind the engine). That may have been a bad idea.

    First of all, that thing is called the VNT actuator.

    The turbocharger is a VNT (Variable Nozzle Turbocharger) and the adjustment on the 'shaft' of the VNT actuator is tuned at the factory. Altering it can have devastating effects on your engine. (like overboost!)

    the code P1550 you are getting is pointing directly at that as the problem ( )

    Essentually, code P1550 is telling you that the computer senses a problem with the VNT actuator or its control piping. Also check your N75 valve.

    Here is a website that has excellent photos of the inner-workings of your VNT... pay close attention to the very last moving photo which shows how the VNT vanes move.
  • have a '94 just got it (comuter car) very clean - the dang alarm is sounding when the batt is connected
    prior owner lost the master key and I had one made (not by VW) the barrel on the drivers door is broken but still cant silence the alarm even when actuating the door lock with a screwdriver!!
    and the key will not actuate the passenger side door! it DOES operate the ignition but with the alarm engaged, the ignition is locked out -- any clues?? or will a new master key being made fix this? thanks in advance for any suggestions!
  • OK so I looked at the VNT site you gave me, that helped me understand how it works. One of the techs at a diesel fuel system here in Bangor replaced it for me, and it didn't work well....he then found out the exact specs to set it at and when he did that, it worked great, for a week..and then this issue started happening. I have ordered new hosing for the vaccum lines in desperation...I have replaced the MAF since, aftermarket, and checked the MAF connector using a multimeter (14 volts to pin 2, and 5 volts to pin 4) I think the connector is working fine. I also just ordered my VAG-Com system and bentley manual yesterday, should be here by the weekend.

    Do you know the specs the VNT actuator should be set at for a 1999.5 TDI (new body style I think thats called MK4)?

    I had to replace it (it was rusted out and didn't move at all from the previous owner).

    Thanks for your efforts
  • I have a 2004 Jetta GLS....recently the floor on the driver side, front and back, is soaking wet - mat included. They've been there for about 2 weeks and show no signs of drying - I do live in the Pacific NW so its wet here a lot but the floor was flooded weeks before the rain really started. I can find no leak/hole etc. explanation for it and when I took it to a service station (not the crooked, dishonest, ripoff dealership) they wouldn't even look at it because it was on the driver side and it was just water on the floor. Apparently I'm supposed to contact the Water Doc but can't seem to find such business (in Kirkland, WA).

    Any thoughts or suggestions or similar experiences would be greatly appreciated, a door seal possibly?? I lost my job about 8 months ago so I'd like to avoid a giant repair bill if possible (or a giant bill just to look at it and tell me its nothing).
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    I see you are in Maine... were you aware that a highly-rated TDI mechanic is in Maine? Herm Pasker is in Richmond Maine.
    I have even considerd driving from Vermont to see Herm for a TimingBelt change.

    You may consider at least calling and chatting with him about your TDI problems.

    You can find Herm and other TDI mechanics in this list
  • well -- the first thing that I would do is to have someone sit in the passenger seat and with all windows / doors closed observe when you hit the car with a hose --
    spray along the front cowling, door seal and window for a few min to see if there is a sign of where the leak is coming from
    also just a thought -- have you noticed if the water is sweet smelling ???? this is a sign of coolant leakage -- just a thought and hope this helps a tad!
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