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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,

Have strange intermittent non-starting problem with my wife's 2000 Beetle...

Just started occurring this past week.....here's what's happened:

Yesterday

Beetle is parked outside our house in driveway.

It starts up OK and my wife drives off to do errands.....

After parking Beetle by store, she did some shopping for about 45 minutes. By time she came outside it was hot out (+/- 80 degrees...) and car was in the sun.

She returned to the car and started car, but shortly after it started engine stopped running.

She waited a few minutes, tried again and same thing happened. Then waited another minute or so, tried again and same thing....

After 3 or 4 attempts like this, car started up OK and kept running. My wife drove home OK a distance of about 20 miles, mostly on freeway.

She left Beetle parked in front of our house after that. A few hours later I came home from work. I tried starting Beetle and it started up OK and kept running.

About an hour later I returned to car, started it up and drove about 1.5 miles to gas station, filled up car and returned home. No problems with car.


Today

My wife went to another store about 6 - 8 miles away. Parked car and went inside store for about an hour.

When she came outside it was hot out (+/- 80 degrees...) and car was in the sun.

She tried starting car but same as yesterday, car would start and then engine stop running. After a few times, she gave up, and called AAA and got Beetle towed home.

Tow truck driver said he thought it might be either fuel filter or clogged fuel line issue. Don't know if he's right or wrong...just what he said to my wife.

I came home early to check car. When I tried starting it, it started up normally and engine seems to run OK. Drove Beetle down are street a little bit and then turned around and came back to our house and parked car.



Any ideas as what might be going on?.......

Given age of car, I did make an appt to have car checked out Monday morning. But thought it would be great if anyone has any input before then.

Thanks for any and all input!

Mark
 

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It could be a number of things that come to mind: immobilizer kicking on, a worn out or broken ignition switch, crank/engine speed sensor intermittently failing or the fuel pump is in the process of dying.

I would start with a fresh scan with a VW specific scan tool and see if anything comes up. If you are going to keep the car for awhile; investing in a VW compatible scan tool is a must and can save you a ton of money! When you get trouble codes; you can post that info on this site and then we can help you diagnose and repair the problem. Check out the VAG 401, Foxwell NT500 on Amazon or the VCDS by Ross Tech.

Let us know; the results of your repairs, that way others, can learn from your experience. Thanks. :)


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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you for all your helpful input!

Had a feeling it could be any of a variety of things causing this....

As for scan tool....didn't know there were VW specific scan tools available to us consumers.....

I have an Actron CP9135 OBD II scanner that is about 10 years old....

Will look into the ones you suggest...

And yes, will post the outcome of visit to shop on Monday....but good to have as much info as possible when discussing Beetle there....

Thanks.
 

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Well, if you have a generic OBD II scan tool (like your Actron); go ahead, scan your car and see if there are any codes that pop up. You never know and it is worth a try; usually, for proprietary computer modules, like abs, immobilizer and comfort controls etc. a generic scan tool cannot access that information and trouble codes. You have nothing to lose; give it a shot and report back, any codes you see. Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Tried scanning, but it returned no codes.......

Thanks again for your help....
 

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Next, I would run the car down; to a auto parts store like O'Reilly's and have them do a FREE complete test on the charging system. This will rule out the battery and alternator; as a possible problem.

If you are going to keep the car for a while; investing in a VW compatible scan tool, is a good idea and can help you save money, do your own repairs and help you diagnose problems. Many VW shop in California; are over $100 an hour for labor, so it wouldn't take long to spend allot of money on repairs. Knowledge is power and a VW compatible scan tool, can give you info that can really help you know what is going on. Trouble codes; can help us, help you! :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Have an O'Reilly store about 5 miles from my house.....

However, just checked website about services and it has this note about Electrical & Module Testing Service:

NOTE: IGNITION CONTROL MODULE TESTING IS PROHIBITED BY LAW IN CALIFORNIA AND HAWAII.

Can you believe this???.....this is another reason why I need to get out of California....just full of crazy rules and way too much government interference.......but I digress.....

Meanwhile, I am looking at the XTool VAG 401 scanner online....will purchase one....only about $60.....

Thanks,

Mark
 

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My family lives in Silicon Valley; the last time I visited, I took one of their cars down to O'Reilly's and they tested the charging system for FREE. The restrictions, they are referring to is for the ecu and probably check engine lights, that is DIFFERENT than checking the charging system. The OBD II testing; is emissions testing related, that is probably why it is illegal for them to do it, because of overbearing CARB regulations and their paranoia, that someone is circumventing or defeating the emissions controls/testing in some way. As far as I know; you should have no problem and like I said, I just had them do it recently. If you are concerned; about a wasted trip to the auto parts store, call the O'Reilly store that you want to visit and ask them, if they will do a charging system check for you. They will bring out a handheld charging system analyzer, hook it up to your battery and do the testing right there, on your car, after you start up the engine. Done!

Charging and dying batteries; are one of the most common issues on cars. So, to sell parts (new batteries, alternators, etc); they have to be able to diagnose the problem and confirm it, otherwise they would gets tons of returned parts, they cannot resell as new (lost revenue; piles of "used" parts).

Call the store; confirm, they can do the charging system test and go there, confirm that your system is 100% on your car. That will be one item on the list; you can check off and move on to the next possibility.

Removing things off the list; one step at a time! :)

:runnethov
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Thanks as always for your input and help. Greatly appreciate it!

OK, will check out O'Reilly's tomorrow....

Meanwhile, got another problem.....looks like Beetle has a coolant leak.....

When I came out to car earlier today to check code, I noticed a puddle under the car near the front on the driver's side of car.....checked and think it's coolant (pink color...)...

Have had to fill with coolant too often lately....

On 6/2 I added coolant - Also, replaced the orange plastic oil filler tube....

On 7/6 checked and coolant was low again, filled it back up.....

Yesterday, I checked and coolant was up near the full line.....

Hmmm........
 

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A very common area (drivers side); for leaking, is the "coolant flange" which is plastic and it comes off the head. The plastic gets brittle, warp from heat, they can crack and the o-ring gets hard, stops sealing well. These need to be replaced and not reused; I recommend genuine VW parts for these, as we have had some of the aftermarket versions leak. Because of the hassle of removal and installation involved, it is better to do it once with high quality parts and not twice. It is really frustrating; when you get everything back together and it starts leaking again.

If you have a hard time finding the leak; you might consider investing in a coolant system pressure tester. This pinpoints the source of the leak and when you replace parts; you can confirm, that you have found all the leaks in the system. Keep in mind; that these era VW's are notorious for coolant leaks and if you keep your New Beetle for awhile, you WILL have more leaks. It is inevitable, as the coolant system; has allot of plastic parts, that end up leaking from time to time, more often than cars of the past (which used metal; instead of plastic for cooling parts).

So, this tool; elminates guessing and gets you back on the road, asap! There are many on the market these days and compared, to having a shop diagnose it for you, is worth the investment. It will pay for itself; the first time you use it and many times over, in the future. I bought the harbor freight one; as it has the adapter, for our VW's but there are many cheaper ones out there as well and some are made of metal, unlike the HF kit, which is plastic. Most kits, have adapters to many other cars; so, you can use it on other cars you own as well. The HF is ok for home use but if you are willing to research some; there are what looks to be better quality kits, made out of metal. It all depends; on how fast you want the kit, the quality you desire and how much money you are willing to spend. You local HF; will have it in stock but you might call ahead, just to make sure.


Radiator Pressure Tester Kit (look online for a 20% off coupon): about $72 with coupon plus tax.

Pittsburgh Automotive - Item#69258


https://www.google.com/search?q=2.0...eid=chrome&ie=UTF-8#q=coolant+pressure+tester

Here are some videos; links to parts and that should give you an idea, as to what is involved. If you are "in there" and the coolant is coming out anyway, you might consider replacing the thermostat and housing/flange, as a preventative measure. It is common for the thermostats or stick, don't open all the way or close when they should. This affects how the car runs and may not let the car; operate, at the correct temps.

https://www.google.com/search?q=2.0...#q=new+beetle+2.0L+coolant+flange+replacement
 

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Archi, our 1999 had similar intermittent starting issues also. Most times, it started just fine, other times, it took 3-4 tries. It turned out to be a faulty Evap Purge Valve. Most commonly, the faulty evap purge valve will present itself with hard starting after fueling up at the gas station. However, it can also cause hard intermittent starting as was in my case. You can try switching it out yourself - it's about $35-50 for a Bosch replacement on Amazon. It's located on the on the passenger fender next to the coolant tank.
 

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Billymade knows his stuff . I'm a tuner but beetles were my weak point. Listen to his suggestions he's spot on. No codes definitely would lead me to check charging systems . These cars act up when the proper voltage is not being reached. That leak could also be coming from that Y coolant line at front with the sensor inside it . That area is prone to fail as well . Look for crusted areas on your hoses indicating dried up coolant or better yet run a dye or pressure test it . Ecs tuning has one for less than $45 if you know what your doing. Saves a lot of time. GL

Sent from my SM-N920V using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
Thanks guys for all the advice and suggestions!....this is why I like coming here....everyone is so helpful....

Sorry, didn't post sooner, but was very busy with work last week...also, don't remember getting email notifications about new posts...

So, to update you all on our Beetle saga.........

Brought car in to shop last Monday.....

After a few hours, got call that car had multiple issues:

Battery

Had 2 weak cells....fortunately, was under warranty as was installed in '14, so no charge to replace


Coolant Leak

billymade was right, coolant flange leaking.....so, said to replace it...

Valve Cover Leak

Shop noticed seepage....told them to replace gasket...


Oil Pan Leak

Shop noticed leak...checked our file and said they'd noticed that they'd noted that a wrong size drain plug had been installed by someone sometime ago. So, between leak and stripped out plug hole, they said to replace the gasket and oil pan....


Air Pump Buffers

They said they noticed they were worn....so, replace....


Starting Problem

They said the fuel pump and module were bad....so, replace......



Car ended up staying in shop until Wed mid-morning.......

Picked up car and after getting my bank account drained out, went in Beetle and started up OK.....drove home and car felt smoother than before......so was feeling good about car.....


Current Situation

Next day, my wife took car somewhere, parked, came back an hour later, and had difficulty starting car!....she was patient, tried a few times, like she'd done prior to car being in shop and it started up after a few tries and she drove home....

Like before, I got home some hours later, got in car and of course it started right up, first try for me......


Now, fast forward to this week, yesterday, same thing happened to my wife........and of course, same thing when I tried starting car in the evening....started right up.....

The common theme in starting problem is that it happens to my wife after she's already started car, drove it somewhere, and parked it for an hour or so....

Lately, this meant parking in an open parking lot and it's been hot and in the sun during the time that Beetle is parked.

So, think there's still something else that needs fixing....

RemoGaggi, your suggestion about a faulty Evap Purge Valve certainly sounds like a possibility.......and a relatively easy fix....

Wonder if given age of car, it could be starter motor or the ignition switch is worn a bit?

Would like to get this situation fixed as it makes my wife very nervous now about driving somewhere and getting stuck after she returns to car and it won't start.....

Thanks.

Mark
 

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Hmmm, lots of needed work done; I bet that wasn't a cheap repair bill! Just out of curiosity; how much was it? :confused:

As for the the "no start" condition; I would scan the car and see if there are any trouble codes. You have removed some variables out of the equation; new water pump (what brand?).

Did your wife, mention; if the immobilizer light, was flashing in the speedo cluster?

I am thinking: immobilizer problem, crank sensor, ignition switch, failing starter or other possibilities. Having a VW scan tool; to be able, to read trouble codes would be nice and that could help you diagnose the problem. From what I have experienced on my own 2002 New Beetle; a bad crank or immobilizer problem; will throw a trouble code, so that helps narrow that down. A bad ignition switch or failing starter will not. Many have said; that a bad purge valve will throw a code, as well.

Since, you had so much work done and the issue has not been resolved; you might want to take it back to the shop, that worked on it last. I would want them; to give you a estimate, before they charge you any more money, than what you have already spent. Technically, they didn't "fix" the issue; you took the car in for, even though all the other maintenance work probably needed to be done anyway. You may need to just drop the car off and have them drive it to replicate the conditions that cause it to act up, this may take number of days until they can replicate the problem; basically, tell them to keep it, until they fix it! What kind of shop is this? Do they specialize in Volkswagen or German/European cars?

Let us know; how things go, as you move forward with your repairs and troubleshooting process. If you want to tackle the problems yourself; let us know and we can point you in the direction of testing and some diy's to work on some possible solutions to the problem. Hopefully, you can get this resolved quickly and fix it, once & for all!
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Beetle was at the VW dealer's shop.......$2,897.18.......

Unfortunately, haven't gotten the VW scanner yet...just have my generic one now...

Didn't replace the water pump now.....did replace it back in '06....car had only 33K miles.....car now has close to 76K miles...so was thinking recently about water pump.....

My wife did say some lights came on when she had the problem, but didn't mention the immobilizer light....will show her the picture in the manual that shows the various lights and ask her about it later today.

Thanks for your advice about how to approach shop about fixing issue.

However, I'm tempted to get a evap purge valve and replace it myself as that sounds pretty easy, and saves time and energy dealing with dealer's shop, and see if this fixes problem. If it fixes it, then we are done....

If it doesn't fix it, then time to do what you suggest and bring car back to shop to deal with......

Sound like a plan?

Thanks.
 

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Wow, that is a serious repair bill; almost getting to the pont, of what the value of the car is! :mad: Nauseating! :banghead::cuss:

Kinda, takes your breath, away! Although, many VW dealerships/shops; are over $100 an hour shop/labor rate, so it doesn't take long to get to that price for repairs!

Considering, the high cost of repairs; throwing a cheap part on the car, is peanuts compared to what you just spent! I do think; you should invest in a VW compatible scan tool, especially since you could save some money, after that last repair bill! :eek:hnoes: I have VCDS and it has saved me thousands in repairs and it wouldn't be on the road today, without it! In general, we try to get members here; to troubleshoot their problems, rather than throwing parts at a problem but that takes time and a VW scan tool, is crucial to reading trouble codes. The shotgun approach to troubleshooting; can get expensive and may not fix the problem. You have to weigh the potential cost of the parts and time it takes to do it yourself; plus, the possibility it won't fix the issue but it can be cheaper, than having a VW dealer fix it for you. The Purge valve is about $35-$60; so, it isn't too expensive.

If you buy one; be sure it is oem aftermarket Bosch part or genuine VW/Bosch dealer part and it will be the best quality.

Evap Purge Regulator Valve (N80)
VW Part Number: 1C0-906-517-A-
Bosch Part Number: 0280142353

https://www.google.com/search?q=1C0...urceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8#q=Bosch+1C0-906-517-A-

https://www.google.com/search?q=028...57j69i60j69i61j69i60&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

Here is a video; discussing the failure of the N80 purge valve:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4IWzZzZb6B8

In the future, if you decide to tackle some of the repairs yourself; let us know and we can give you links to "diy's" and links to the service manual online.

http://workshop-manuals.com/volkswagen/
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 · (Edited)
Yes, not cheap.....but then my wife loves the car, it has relatively low mileage for its age, and as she says, it's cheaper than getting a new one....at least this is how we rationalize it.... :)

If I wasn't so busy with work, I would have spent some time fiddling with car before bringing it to shop. Although I used to do quite a bit of service work on cars in my younger days, but that was back when cars had carbeuretors, points, etc.... :)

Also, was concerned since it involved starting up car and I don't want my wife stranded somewhere if possible....

Here's how it added up:

Total Labor $2,032.30

Total Parts $1,087.90

Minus Discount -$320.00

Tax $95.20

Total Bill $2897.18

At least they took car of the battery at no charge..... :rolleyes:

I do plan on getting the VW scan tool soon....will be worth the cost....

Also, think I'll try to get the evap purge valve tomorrow. Who knows, maybe that will take care of it.....

Will keep you posted.....

Thanks again for all the help!
 

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Keep us in the loop! Hopefully you can nail down the problem!


PS: with your mechanical background; you CAN fix things on these more modern cars. You just need to "update" your tools (e.g. VW scan tool) and we can help/support you along the way! :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Keep us in the loop! Hopefully you can nail down the problem!
Here's the latest......

Brought Beetle in Monday morning.....

Discussed the evap purge valve with service advisor....he said he didn't think it was issue, but said he'd have it checked....he thought it was more likely crank sensor or if not, then starter motor....

Ended up replacing crank sensor.......

Knock on wood, car seems to be OK now.....we shall see.....

THANKS again for all the great help and support!


PS: with your mechanical background; you CAN fix things on these more modern cars. You just need to "update" your tools (e.g. VW scan tool) and we can help/support you along the way! :)
Thanks.....agree with your assessment that I can work on the Beetle, just need better tools....however, part of the reason I'm hesitate to do more than fairly simple, quick tasks, is that with my demanding job, if I start a repair and it turns more complex and thus more time involved, I will get stressed and worried about trying to get job done and car put back together so that my wife has a car to drive.....have enough stress with my day job......maybe when I retire......although that's looking about 6 years or so out..... :eek:
 
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