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Discussion Starter #1
I want to start by thanking everyone for help in advance.

So the whole story. We bought the car, 2003 Passat 1.8t, with a bad oil pump. Long story short we ended up replacing the motor. Well my father in law cause I’m less than confident doing so in a VW. Put new timing belt and tensioners in it and a new oil pump. Got it running again and it ran rough. Ended up putting a new tcm in it and somehow it started to run better. But ended up parked for 7 months through winter. I pulled it back out and dried the carpet. Fixed the leaks, and can I mention I’ve never been so frazzled as to how many spots an interior can leak from.

To current problems. Was throwing a multiple misfire code, cylinder 4 misfire code, and a knock sensor. Knock sensor I assumed was due to crap gas sitting in it. I replaced the coil on 4 and it ran great again. Until yesterday. I’ve been driving it the past few days and then yesterday I cleared the knock code. I had just put fresh 91 in it and was trying to run it some, cleared the code and as I pulled out of the parts store it started running awful, lost power and died. Went to crank it over and wouldn’t even grab. Just click like it wants to engage but won’t turn over. Battery was new when the motor was put in it last fall.

Called the guy who put motor in with father in law as he has experience with it and said could be the ground loosened or isn’t grounding well off the starter?

Thought? Any other spots to look?

Thanks again!
Cody
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Also want to add. When turn over have all lights, radio, windows, etc. also did try turning the key over for 7 seconds and that didn’t work either.
 

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I know you said the battery is new, but I'd still check voltage when you try to crank it. If there is significant voltage drop, it's probably a weak/bad battery. Otherwise, it sounds like the starter.

As an aside, given the amount of water issues you mentioned, probably totally unrelated to your current problem, I'd suggest pulling up the driver's side carpet to make sure the CCM and connections are in good condition. Great place to put electronics, eh? At the lowest point in the cabin.

EDIT: Even if the voltage is inconclusive, if you really want to rule out the battery, try to jump start it.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
When I had it towed they put a jump pack on it and with two attempts it drained the jump pack but still wouldn’t turn over.

My gut is telling me fuel pump or starter. Both jobs I’d rather not do lol
 

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When I had it towed they put a jump pack on it and with two attempts it drained the jump pack but still wouldn’t turn over.

My gut is telling me fuel pump or starter. Both jobs I’d rather not do lol
I hear you - I didn't buy my car to become a home mechanic, but it beats being raped by the stealership or most mechanics.

FYI, I've had mechanics try the jump packs on my car, and they failed - and that's when I knew it was the battery! The only jump test that is conclusive is with the cables, and a started 2nd car.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Yeah. I will give it a jump this afternoon. I might just pull the battery and see if they will test it/warranty it out. Its possible I remember hearing him say it froze up this past winter so who knows. I thought for sure if it froze up it wouldn't be able to be brought back to life.

Battery would be a simple fix. Wonder if the battery could cause the knock sensor code...
 

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Another idea: Could it be your fuel filter? I have one waiting to be installed, because I was having hesitation issues during one drive. But, haven't seen anything since that drive. Will eventually install, regardless. Have you ever replaced yours? They recommend every 50K miles.

EDIT: This doesn't make much sense, because your starter apparently isn't engaging.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I thought the same thing as it chugged and idled rough before dieing. But the starter should still engage and spin. Also why I amm leaning away from a fuel pump. But I wouldn't think a starter would cause the sputter and then just die either. Battery would make sense in my head cause it would cut off everything.
 

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I thought the same thing as it chugged and idled rough before dieing. But the starter should still engage and spin. Also why I amm leaning away from a fuel pump. But I wouldn't think a starter would cause the sputter and then just die either. Battery would make sense in my head cause it would cut off everything.
Check/clean the battery contacts too ....
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I want to check the contacts to the starter but am not sure how difficult they are to get to. looking from the top down it looks real tight....
 

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Another idea that may match all your symptoms is your alternator is going out. So, in addition to causing all kinds of electrical issues with your electronics (which manage fuel injections, I believe), it may not be charging your battery. So, you end up with a dead battery, eventually. Just an idea. You need to do some testing to narrow it down. Hope I helped. vagguy or PZ or one of the other vets will probably have far better insight.
 

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My guess is for something in the starter circuit as well. The lights, radio, etc take a tiny fraction of what the starter needs so having them work doesn't really tell you anything. Get the battery load tested and then clean and check all the connections to the starter.

Also, a new battery should hold enough charge to not freeze for 7 months unless it was run down before the car was parked or there is a vampire current load somewhere. I wouldn't recommend leaving a battery sit 7 months over the winter unused but a new battery should survive that without freezing if it was fully charged at the start.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Yeah I called an owner of a local shop. I am going to pull the battery tonight and check the connections. If I cant find it tonight I am going to have him throw it on the hoist and take a better look at it. When it comes to electrical I dont like to chase the wild goose.
 

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I want to check the contacts to the starter but am not sure how difficult they are to get to. looking from the top down it looks real tight....
you can see it somewhat, (relatively speaking) from directly under turbo area. Getting it out is a different story as it has a front bracket ( 8mm to block and a couple of 5mm to "nose" of starter)...then one 8 or 10mm bolt going front to back and one other 8 or 10mm going back to front......being double jointed is an asset in this case
 

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to test starter, you can use a simple female spade/bayonet style terminal (I think 1/4" would work) and unplug the terminal (mine is transluscent green) on the starter/solenoid connection which is towards the front of the car on the back of starter ,# 50 ?or #30? (small wire)( you should be able to snake hand up to it) and once connected jump wire to positive terminal of battery, The starter gets it's ground connection from the block/chassis and the positive from the cable that runs from battery under the air box (attached to frame running through a little curved plastic protective elbow) to starter. To check that positive cable from battery you need to use something like a bulb/wire setup ,as using a multimeter could indicate 12 vdc but not the potential amperage needed to engage solenoid, as an example if you hook two nine volt transistor batteries in series you have a reading of 18 volts, but hook to a starter and you get ziltch. If the starter works the trace backwards to relay....
 

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Turn on some light such as the overhead reading light, and watch it while you attempt to start the engine. If it dims, then voltage is getting low due to (1) a faulty or discharged battery (2) high-resistance connection between the battery and the electrical system (including the body ground connection) or (3) a seized engine. Probably others but those are what comes to mind.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Gotta throw the seized engine out there... knew it was coming but reeeeaaally didn’t wanna think about it...
 

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I know, and not likely, but its happened. I had a Toyota pickup, that had started having a misfire at startup which would clear up after a bit of running. One day I go to start it, but the engine starts to crank -then stops. It didn't take long to figure that it was hydro-locked; unknown to me, the head gasket developed a leak into one cylinder, and that was what the misfire was; until the coolant got blown out, it wouldn't fire. Finally the leak got so bad that there wasn't enough room in the combustion chamber for the coolant, so it jammed the engine to a stop -Hydro Lock. I pulled all the plugs, cranked the engine, and the coolant from that one cylinder sprayed the whole underside of the hood.
 
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