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Volkswagen Jetta 2005 and earlier



  • adg44adg44 Posts: 385
    They just light up so much. Everyone says when they get into my audi at night "your lights are so bright!" I'm still trying to figure out how I can turn that into some witty comment to throw back at the ladies, so suggestions are welcome. :D

    And they look cool, and we all know that's REALLY why people get HIDs. ;)
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Posts: 6,257
    I admit it's the wow factor but also once you tool around in any car with real HIDs then it's impossible to go back. considering how upmarket VW is, it's actually shocking Xenons aren't an option. i think VW is missing an easy extra $300 profit on about 30-40% of the jettas/golfs sold.
  • 8u6hfd8u6hfd Posts: 1,391

    You do realize, for automotive applications HID systems use a Xenon gas mixture.

    Xenon is used instead of a mercury halide (industrial lighting applications) because it reaches its full operating brightness much quicker (about a minute versus several minutes).
  • bpeeblesbpeebles Posts: 4,085
    Yes, I was trying to keep it simple for the 'masses'. I realize that the technology of HID is actually more of a "gas discharge" than the more familiar "hot filament".

    The function of the Halide gas in a "hot filament" with quartz envelope is to eliminate the oxidizing of the filimanet and promote 'recycling' of the gaseous metal that emanates from the "hot filament".

    My main message about HID is that is is a TOTALLY DIFFERENT TECHNOLOGY from what we are accustomed to for headlights. This is not a "new" technology, "Gas discharge" was first used in lighthouses ~100 years ago. It was crude and the carbon arc would consume itself quickly.... but the light output was far better than a lantern flame 8-)
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Posts: 6,257
    How do I hate humanity? Let me count the ways.

    Last night a friend and I went to a movie in La Jolla (unusual for us but a specific film was showing there). After the movie I jetted home oblivious to what must have happened in those 3 hours away from my car.

    This morning I drove to work, parked, attended work and drove home. As I pulled my garbage cans up the driveway my eyes fell on a weird shadow low and in the middle of my 330i's rear bumper. Nah, a trick of light. My pace quickened though as the "shadow" didn't leave as I closed toward the garage. As I reached the apex of the driveway my heart raced, rage and confusion welled up inside of me.

    That's not a shadow, someone hit my car! Dead center, low (beneath the black bumper line) a scrape a good foot long ripped across the car. how? When?

    I distinctly recall seeing the back of the car after work yesterday and admiring the color. As we left my car for the movies, parked in a disabled spot with my placard, my friend gazed back at the car with me and she commented on the color. No mark.

    After the film we approached from the front though. I parked in my garage last night, then off to work today never going near the rear of the car. At work I parked in a disabled spot safely stashed far away from the other cars. Or so I thought. For someone to strike my car's bumper at work he'd have to cross a good 40 foot gap. not likely.

    It must have happened at the theatre. Five days old and already a cruel member of society has marred my poor car. :( The culprit hit the bumper and lower skirt at about the 1/3rd point width-wise and kept going a good 18-24 inches before pulling away and/or stopping his destruction. this wasn't a parking lot bump. someone hit my rear and just kept on going.

    Off to BMW tomorrow to see if they can do a repair (doubtful). If not, I have an appointment monday with a body shop guy my salesman suggests. And church friends claim to have a good friend who does this for a living and can probably cut me a deal.
  • vcjumpervcjumper Posts: 1,110
    That sucks, BMW envy at play?!
  • chmeeeechmeeee Posts: 327
    That really sucks, and sounds so similar to what happened to me when I got my car. The second day that I took it to work, I got in it to go home (actually to go into Boston for dinner), and stopped at a gas station. When I was walking back to my car I saw the huge scrape on the front corner, also no ordinary bump. The plastic is gouged pretty deep, it looks like somebody pulled out of the space next to me and turned too soon, dragging the side of their car along the corner of mine. I hope my car left a nice long Baltic Green scrape.

    I still haven't fixed it, but I plan on doing it myself this summer. I can probably buy a used bumper of somebody on the Vortex for pretty cheap, since people over there are so interested in putting body kits on their cars. I figure it wont cost too much to have it painted at a body shop, and its cake to install it, I have taken mine off before when I put in my new headlights.

    Good luck at that body shop.
  • adg44adg44 Posts: 385
    Can you show us some pictures?

    If it's just some scratches, make sure they just fix and blend instead of replacing the bumper and the lower skirt. This way you can get a 100% color match.

    That really sucks. :(

    I always hate taking my cars to the movie theaters.... it just seems that something always happens.
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Posts: 6,257
    The guys at BMW figure their cat who does this stuff will sand down the old paint and blend because all the damage is below the black rubber bumper. There's no structural damage to the bumper or skirt...all cosmetic. And mugly ugly.
  • venus537venus537 Posts: 1,443
    i feel your pain. my first jetta was "keyed" along the whole driver's side and hood. i'm for capital punishment for these kind of offenses.
  • ruking1ruking1 Posts: 18,553
    Sorry to hear about these types of damages! If you all don't mind me asking, how much did it cost to refinish the "keyed" damage?
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    I didn't take the pics of the front and rear seats where they're burned up actually. I am going to try to get to the body shop this week sometime to try and get more pics of the car. I am sure they will have to replace everything inside the car for the smell to go away, as well as some stuff in the ventilation system. The trunk also stinks like hell inside, so I guess they would have to clean or replace that stuff too. I am still waiting for them to evaluate the car, and also spoke with the investigator for 35 mins. on Friday about the whole ordeal.

    What he told me was that it looked like the window that was broken was broken from the inside out, not the other way around. The car was parked and the alarm set as usual, and it hadn't gone off the night before to my knowledge. The alarm had gone off on its own 3 or 4 times the week before though, but I never got time to take the car to the shop for the problem. I hope it's not related to what happend, that would be something.
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Posts: 6,257
    Well I've had it for sale for over a week and nobody is calling about the Jetta. Argh. 14k is right in line with KBB and Edmunds too! In fact, it's underpriced.

    Any suggestions gurus of the VW world? I'm getting so impatient I'm considering dropping it off with a VW dealer and taking the hit.
  • justinjustin Posts: 1,918
    sorry to hear that. i want to ask you a question about your sway bar -

    do you think sway bars help with convertible body "flex"? all softtops are a little less sturdy than hardtops, and mine being designed in 1995, not the highest of technology. the ride can be very....bumpy and vibrate-y. balanced, aligned, perfect bearings, axles, etc. everyone says it is typical Cabrio "flex".

    do sway bars tighten that up?

    gracias! good luck with the sale of the blue bomb!
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Posts: 6,257
    My swaybar made my Jetta's ride a shade rougher (compared to the BMW it's downright harsh), so I'm not entirely sure. :( I'd think it could possibly help the flexing but may make the ride different.

    Check Vortex to find out if other cabrio drivers have made that mod.
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    Used car values are in the can right now. I write up contracts everyday on used cars (I work for Chrysler Financial) that are selling mostly below their book value. Too bad you don't have Carmax in CA, you could sell it to them and just walk away from it.
  • blueguydotcomblueguydotcom Posts: 6,257
    They have carmax in LA. I'll contact them and if it's a fair price...what the heck! I'll drive 300 miles to part with my buggy.

    argh...just called and as usual nobody will give me even a ballpark. "It depends on the condition of the car." Genius, I'm not asking for a firm figure just a ballpark. Assume all the bits and pieces fit, the car's near perfect and runs like a top...what then? "Can't say." Estimate!!! Someone gives me a range of 14-12k, I'm satisfied. Nothing.
  • vcjumpervcjumper Posts: 1,110
    does the cabrio have strut tower bars already? Those are more known for strengthening up a loosey goosey chasis than sway bars.
  • lngtonge18lngtonge18 Posts: 2,228
    I agree with vcjumper and blue. Sway bars can end up making the ride rougher so choose them wisely. The best way to reduce chassis flex in a convertible without affecting the ride is to add a front strut tower brace. They make a world of difference by reducing cowl and steering wheel shake as well as reducing interior rattles. I'm not sure if the aftermarket offers subframe braces for the Cabrio, but those help too. I added a simple straight bar connecting the lower control arms on my 92 Miata and the front end was noticeably tighter and the well-known 60 mph shaking was reduced considerably. In fact, after spending $110, I upgraded the chassis of my 92 model to 94 standards (I also added the bar that connects the seatbelt towers).

    I drove an 02 Cabrio with the top down and I was impressed with how solid and smooth riding it is. It soaked up bumps very well and I didn't detect any cowl shake up to 60mph. What year is your car and how many miles? It's possible your shocks are worn out.
  • justinjustin Posts: 1,918
    my Cabrio is a 2002 with 10000 miles on it. when the top is DOWN, the car is rock solid, even at 85 mph. it is top up issues i am having.

    thanks for the advice! yep, all the Miata's i drove had strut tower braces in the front. but in my opinion, the rear of the car is what is "shaking"..... that is why i wondered about a rear sway. but it sounds like that wouldn't be the best idea either. dang!
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    I spoke with the body shop today to see if State Farm said anything about the car or not. They're still investigating, of course. Anyway, while I had the body shop guy on the phone, I asked him about the severity of the damages. He said he saw the car inside, and the gauge plastic cover is melted and so are the gauges (including odometer). In addition, he said they would have to replace the entire interior (dash, door panels, pillars, headliner, carpeting, seats, trunk trim even) AND they would have to replace all the car's glass because the black film on there would not come off. He said not to quote him, but he thinks it's a total loss.

    A sad day indeed. I will get a definite answer hopefully by Monday.
  • AnakinAnakin Posts: 410
    so the question is:

    Would you consider another VW?

    I know you have had some issues, but have they been enough to make you swear off VW?
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    Not getting another VW. The maintenance costs and extremely rude customer service both from the dealerships and VW Credit is to blame for my decision. Maybe when the MKV comes out, I will change my mind.
  • wcwagwcwag Posts: 19
    My Jetta 1.8T '03 had 4 new engine coils replaced one month ago after I had problems with the car shaking when I put it in gear in starting it up in a.m. (the VW dealership was courteous, polite, gave me car to use while repairs being made). One month later, this past week, MIL light went on again with minimal shaking. This time my invoice says they removed and installed engine control module and repaired manual 01 diagnosis procedure.

    Has anyone else had this done to their car after engine coil problems? When I asked mechanic he said that they installed new software on the computer and that the engine was misfiring! Any comments would be appreciated
  • adg44adg44 Posts: 385
    Sorry I haven't gotten back to your e-mail, I have been busy.

    It is normal sometimes that they replace the ECM because of misfires. They do this after they replace the coil packs and you still get misfire codes.

    So, yes, you are fine. :)
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    They didn't replace my ECU, but then again they only replaced one of my faulty coils as well. March, April, and May came and went and the dealer kept telling me I have to wait for the car to break again, they wouldn't replace them proactively. One less thing I have to worry about now I guess...

    But anyway, I VAG-COMed my car a couple months ago to reprogram the harsh shifting tranny, and found some misfires. Now what you said about the ECU explains it.
  • wcwagwcwag Posts: 19
    Thanks, Anthony and Vocus....Wag
  • justinjustin Posts: 1,918
    you are fine. your dealer should have replaced the ECU and the coils at the same time, but hey, it is a VW dealer! anyway, you should be good to go now.
  • vocusvocus Posts: 7,777
    Is it me, or does every VW dealer's customer service suck? I have been to 4 different ones in the state of MD, and they all have shoddy customer service. And these are the same dealerships which plan to sell ~$50,000 SUVs and ~$70,000 luxury cars, right? NEVER HAPPEN!

    There was an article in Automotive News about what VW is going through to try to improve their customer service. They should also work on their quality control...
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