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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
i am in the process of replacing my thermostat.
to remove the coolant flange i found that removing the alternator holding clamp, then the oil level dip-stick tube [used vacuum to remove debris]. it made getting to the lower bolt of the flange easier .

question ? during re-installation the o-ring goes to the flange and around thermostat...how do i make sure it doesn't bind ? i used lithium grease around the o-ring but, when installing the flange how will i know if it binds?

please note that the thermostat removed had white silicone around the inner portion of the o-ring glued to the thermostat. don't know if that was a correct way to do the job. yet, it did not look good to me.

any information or suggestions well received .

i was told by vw mechanic that i can inspect water-pump threw thermostat port. is this true and if so, what do i look for ???

pics attached......
 

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μολὼν λαβ
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Assuming the mating surfaces and groove for the o-ring look good, no nicks or burrs, there's no reason to use grease, and definitely no need for silicone. Tighten the bolts evenly to prevent pushing the o-ring one way or the other.
 

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I didn't remove my alternator to change my t-stat, but i did remove the nut that holds the wire in place on the back to make more room. If you use a ball head hex wrench it is super easy to get off and the alt can stay in place. The 2 bolts that hold the t-stat housing have a hex recess in the center that makes it easier to get out.
Ball head hex wrench
 

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