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Discussion Starter #1
My daughter has a 2005 VW Beetle Conv 1.8l turbo automatic with 95k miles on it. A few months ago the turbo went out. I had it replaced within a couple weeks lights started coming on in the dash and the car would reduce to half power. If you stopped switched car off a few seconds then restarted everything would return to normal for sometime. I carried it back to mechanic the codes read throttle body he removed cleaned and replace the throttle body and everything went back to normal for a few weeks and then it started again. Once the cold weather set in it hasn't done it since. Today she pulled out of a shore and sped up when she slowed for a turning car her car did not down shift below 3rd gear. When she got to the next stoplight she switched the car off and it would not restart, it acted like it had no battery. A friend jump started the car and she drove off when she stopped at the next light the car shutoff and would not restart again. A cop and another guy pushed it in a parking lot. I went jumped the car off and drove it for a few miles with no issue. Once stopped I switched it off several times and restarted it with no issue. Any ideas on what could be causing my problems?
 

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I test drove an NB that did this. It was the alternator dying and there isn't enough charge to keep everything going. If you can, jump start it. Check the voltage with a Volt/Ohm meter and see what the alternator is putting out. Should be 13+ volts but not more than 14.5 volts. Also, make sure all of the battery contacts are clean and tight. Good luck.
 

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First thing I would check is the battery terminals and the small red wire that connects to the positive battery terminal. Since the car has been worked on, I expect that maybe a battery connection may not be tight?

Also get a Voltmeter and/or go to the local auto parts store and have them check the alternator and battery. Usually they do this for free.

How old is the battery? If over 4 years old, just replace it.

Sounds like the car is going into limp mode? Any other lights on the dash? Trouble codes?

Doubt the problem was the throttle body? Be careful where you get the work done, I would back off for a moment on allowing shops to toss parts at the car. I have not heard many 1.8t throttle body problems.

A few more issues.

If you plan on keeping this car, you NEED to do a few things.

1. Purchase an OBDII scan tool, even if you do not know anything about cars, you NEED one of these tools. Less than $50 and it will pay for itself the first time you use it. See first link below in my signature. Ask before you buy, ask if you have questions.

2. Engine temperature, if the engine has a soft thermostat, you are on BORROWED time. The oil pick up WILL get restricted and the oil light WILL start coming on. The thermostat is a $12 part, proper engine temp in these/any cars/car is IMPORTANT. Do not ignore this. See 2nd link below in my signature.

3. With the age and mileage on this car, you NEED to figure out if the timing belt and water pump were ever changed. I doubt it. It is about a $500-$600 job if you shop it. If the timing belt breaks, well, $3500 and a few weeks, you decide.

4. Transmission, well I hate to tell you, the automatic transmission valve body in this car is likely on its last legs. VW extended the warranty on these due to all the problems, but you are beyond even the extended warranty. Problems start as early as 70k miles, and can show up as late as 100k miles. Late/harsh upshifts, harsh/no downshifts. Worse when trans fluid gets warm. The good news is usually the trans are in pretty good shape and a reworked valve body will resolve the problem. Expect to pay between $700-$1100 if you can shop it and/or do the work yourself.

Where are you physically located?

Hate to say it, but as nice as a car that you may have, it is in the high maintenance window and will cost you.

I have a 2003 convertible, bought it new for my wife as a daily driver. At 70k, it was used up. Oil pick up restricted, trans valve body shot, all sorts of window and door latch problems. Everything that could have gone wrong with this car, it happened. Was only offered $5k for the car @ 7 years old. This was a GLX, $28k car.

Decided I was not going to have a car cost me $3200 per year! Hell, could have leased for about this much and walked away after 3 years with few headaches.

So I decided to commit to it and try and get my money out of the car. Have spent money on it, but ALL labor is mine. Have put over 14k trouble free miles on it over the past year. My 17 year old has been driving it and love the car. It is a nice car when working correctly.

Hope for her to get another 4-5 years out of the car. She did hit a BAD pothole and take out the tire, wheel, axle, control arm, but overall the car was not damaged, all parts bolt on replacement and best of all she was not hurt.

These cars can take a beating, but they are also temperamental and need to be maintained.

Hope this info helps?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I have had the car a year. Never had a problem until the turbo went out. I have replaced turbo, thermostat, sensor in the air filter, now the throttle body may be bad, recently replaced the battery, and the window cables on the drivers side popped rendering the window useless. The leather in the door panels is coming loose. If I can get it back in running order it will immediately be up for sale. This is my first and last VW. BUT ON ANOTHER NOTE MY DAUGHTER HAS DRIVEN THE CAR THE REST OF THE DAY WITH NO ISSUES AT ALL!! Go figure.
 

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I am guessing the turbo went due to oil starvation and/or the aux water pump not working?

Sorry to hear you have had problems, but I also wanted to give you a REAL world idea of what to expect with this car.

If you do not want to put money into the car, then selling it might be the correct decision. If you cannot do the work yourself, then you have to plan and shop things otherwise if you wait until failures you will be paying a lot of money.

As they way, when the top goes down, the price goes up.

I am close to having my 2003 back to a reliable car after addressing a lot of the more common issues.

Good luck, hope things work out, but with any older car, it will take time and money keeping them on the road. But often it is more cost effective than than a new car.
 

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battery

Most folks only concentrate on the positive side of the battery but the Negative is just as important and can cause all kinds of problems, it's part of the circuit. check out the posting I did last year titled "CAUTION" of what could happen to your battery negative cable. Good luck man
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Confused

After jump starting the car on 12/13/13, it has ran perfect. She drove the car all day 12/14 with no problems at all. She drove the car today about 50 miles and parked it. She got back in it about 10 minutes ago to take her friend home, she realized she left something in the house switched the car off came in got what she needed and the car will not start. Everything on the car is working; lights, radio, windows, etc. but when you turn the key it makes no sound. It's like a battery cable is disconnected. I have checked all the battery connections everything is tight and there is no corrosion.

P. S. The turbo went out because I had no clue that the car required synthetic oil so when I changed the oil I used regular Castrol instead of synthetic.
 

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Maybe ignition switch, a bad PRNDL switch or possible bad starter.

Try putting the car in neutral WITH foot on the brake and see if the car will start.

Turbo would not go out due to non synthetic oil, may not have been a good for the turbo, but a lot of other factors play more into the turbo life like not changing the oil often enough, the thermostat being bad and the engine running too cool, the axillary water pump failing and a possible clogged catalytic converter.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Just went back out and tried the car again. It cranked up with no problem, however the oil light is flashing and beeping???
 

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Highly likely the oil pickup is restricted. COMMON problem on the 1.8t motors usually due to a bad thermostat that is causes the engine to run too cold.

The good news is the oil pan comes off the car very easily, just the 4 last bolts are tricky.

Get this resolved sooner than later, this may have been part of what caused the premature turbo failure. If you do not address this quickly, the top end will starve for oil, the cams will get tight, the timing belt with then jump timing and you will bend the valves.

Does the Aux water pump run for 10 minutes when the engine is turned off. Pop the hood, it is right behind the hood latch and should run for 10 minutes every time the key is turned off.

Also the metal water pipe that cools the turbo that runs along the frame rail will rust and can get restricted.

Ask me how I know.

I know every possible problem these cars will have.

All 86k miles of my 2003 were put on by 3 members of the family.

If you oil is as dark as the pictures with the oil filters, then you probably the engine is running too cold and the oil is not being changed often enough for the cold running engine.

Where are you located? City/State? Just trying to figure out the climate the car is operating in.
 

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