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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey All,

Well today on Christmas Day, my 16 year old son got the surprise of his life as we threw open the garage door to reveal his very own Beetle!

I have always wanted one of these awesome little cars and it was the perfect excuse to pick one up which I got very very cheap. Has 120K on the clock and is a little rough but being a Vegas car means the body has no rot but will obviously need paint to make it really nice.

There is a myriad of things wrong with the car but I am no stranger to working on vehicles. This will be a labor of love for my son so it means a lot to me to make it as nice as I can possibly make it. Will certainly need good advice on parts and after I exhaust searches, will need a little help here and there to figure out some problems.

Going to start by fixing the obvious and also taking the car to my friends shop for a complete mechanical once over to see to things like suspension, brakes and drivetrain. It has a 2.0 gas engine that has a new head on it. It makes some noise so I am not entirely sure of the health of the engine but it will certainly do for now.

Here it is!
1999 VW Beetle
2.0 Liter Gas
Automatic
120K on the clock



Time to get to work :)


Cheers
Bernie
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks guys,

Right now I am spending time on the forum searching out the most common issues with these cars. Outside of the cosmetic issues and general broken stuff, it also has a bad window regulator on the passenger side, an oil leak and I believe it suffers from a blend door issue as the heater doesn't work. All things I will get sorted out but for now, it's just really cool to see it parked in the driveway even though I have a drip pan underneath it.....lol.

I am hoping that its issues are not over the top but it seems to run well. It does exhibit grabby brakes, transmission seems to shift well, needs probably all its hoses changed as I see corrosion around a lot of them. I guess there are some common electric issues with these cars as well but this one seems to work pretty good. Even the keyfob works to lock and unlock the doors and pop the trunk.

I am also hopeful I can spend some money here on the forum to obtain used parts for the car. The rear wing is missing as an example, I want to replace that horrible hood on the car and I also need to get a bunch of small switches and general covers and such that are either broken or missing. One step at a time :)

Bernie
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Hey Lads,

Working on my first little project with the bug here.
Seems as though we do not have a functioning heater right now. I first though that this might be a blend door issue as I have seen discussed but I can hear the blend door and feel it moving when I dial it back and forth.

Looking under the hood I found, amongst a myriad of other things, a couple of things that look out of place.

The first image shows the hose attachments from the engine to the fire wall. I am seeing two hose fittings but only one hose attached. My memory tells me that a heater core needs coolant going to and coming from the core :)
Does anyone have the coolant hose diagram for the car?


I also found a hose that was blocked off coming from the driverside rear of the head. Wondering is this possibly a coolant hose that has been blocked off or is this some sort of emissions block?



There are a lot of things that are not properly placed and secured in the engine bay. Obviously, whoever has been working on the car decided to just throw everything back in after service without properly routing things correctly.

My thoughts on the heater problem is maybe once it is restored, it might start leaking in the core. It makes sense if the coolant feed to the core has been removed.

Any help is always appreciated.

Bernie
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Well a little bit of research reveals that the heater core is indeed bypassed. Unfortunately I do not know why but suspect it probably has a leak somewhere or else why would anyone need to bypass it right?

The replacement looks like quite the undertaking too but if that's what needs to be done, I will do it.

Its funny what you find when you dig into an older car. This thing was once again worked on by someone who just preferred to use chewing gum and gaffers tape to put it back together. Nothing is routed properly in the engine bay, lots of broken things and screws missing. Oh well, I knew it would be a resto of sorts so away we go!

B
 

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Thank you for adopting this New beetle. Thank you! :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thank you for adopting this New beetle. Thank you! :)
Thank you for following the rebuild!

So I discovered a broken rocker for the passenger side doorlock and looked on ebay for a replacement. Anywhere from 25-100 dollars!
Nope, I know I could fix this, so I did :)



 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
So I am sitting here pondering today.

The insert panels on the door cards are coming off. They are plastic welded into place and all the welds on one panel are almost broken.

Has anyone come up with a clever way to reattach these inserts that looks good? I don't want to go for the gobs of glue method and I though of even using rivets but I don't think I can center them so it will look stupid.

 

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Leaking heater cores are common. I replaced my heater core last summer. The whole dash needs to come out so the blend door thread is a very good place to start. You might as well repair the blend doors as well while you are there. The problem is that a foam material was used on the doors and it falls apart after a while, leaving gaping holes in the door. Without the foam it is pretty much like being set to "cold" all the time.

The hose on the drivers side of the head connects to the intake manifold and then from the intake manifold it goes on to the coolant reservoir. It is the path by which air is purged from the cooling system. Without it you will have a difficult time filling the cooling system and my have overheating problems.

Good luck with your new project! There is collectively a great deal of knowledge at this site so you found the right place for advice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks a lot for this info.

Looks like a big job time wise so I best get to it.........lol.

Thinking it makes the most sense now to replace all the coolant hoses while I am at it. I bet there are some that are original and since I live in Las Vegas, this little bug will deal with some pretty intense heat during the summer months.

Bernie
 

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I'd also pay close attention to the plastic parts and o-rings in the cooling system. I'd hate to replace every hose only to have a plastic part split open a year or two later.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
On another note,

Wondering what others have done with the peeling rubberized coating on interior parts? Mine are all scraped and looking ratty so I removed it all from these pieces. Wondering if plasti-dip might be an option but I am worried it won't hold up and I will be back to cleaning it off again.

Any others have options for this besides straight up paint?

 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I'd also pay close attention to the plastic parts and o-rings in the cooling system. I'd hate to replace every hose only to have a plastic part split open a year or two later.
Yes, I will certainly pay close attention to the plastic couplers.

Cheers!
 

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Merry Christmas!!!

:curtsey::curtsey:I just got my new beetle for Christmas as well. He's my first and already I am falling more in love with him every day! He's a 1999 so I imagine I will be having some issues that will require some advice from the more knowledgeable members. Looking forward to many fun adventures with Sir Boris!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
:curtsey::curtsey:I just got my new beetle for Christmas as well. He's my first and already I am falling more in love with him every day! He's a 1999 so I imagine I will be having some issues that will require some advice from the more knowledgeable members. Looking forward to many fun adventures with Sir Boris!!

That's Awesome!
Since yours is also a 1999, we will probably go down the road of similar issues. I am going to continue to post to this thread all along the process of getting this little bug back to fighting trim. It's my sons car but I absolutely LOVE these cars. Not a big fan of the new ones but these first gen new beetles look fantastic!
 

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Before going for the heater cores throat, I had an instance where the coupler disintegrated and leaked. this may well have been the issue here as well. I noticed that yours is mia on the right side. You can get these at VW or source one at a salvage yard. there is an o-ring inside it and it is held to the core via a clip. These are keyed - this means you cant twist it to loosen once the clip is off, it has to be wiggled and pulled free - a can of ''Freeze off'' at Autozone works beautiful on this if they are stuck.

I have a tester for pumping air into the system for checks, bought it at Harbor freight. you can modify it a bit to check individual components
, in this situation I would find two pvc plugs (home depot) tap one for a 6mm x 1 thread and pull the fitting from one of the test kits adaptors. Block both sides of the core and pump it to 17lbs and let it sit for ten min. if you have no drop in pressure then your core is fine.
 

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this pic is from a thread where I tested my radiator using this method. It will give you the jist of what I tried to convey above, only to test the core you will have to plug hoses coming and going to it. When I was repairing my bug at the time I ran a garden hose with a straight nozzle to clean the core out, and believe me they get cruddy
 

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The 3/4 plugs work for the larger radiator hoses , so you would have to find smaller sizes to correspond accordingly. and here is how you borrow the fitting from an unused adapter in the test kit
 

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