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:mad: :mad: :mad: i brought my 99 wagon if for a shifting problem and dealer says i need a new tranny FOR $$5800. AHHHHHHHHH any one have similar problem. 87000 miles , car starts out fine and when it reaches shift point it goes into neutral,tacking from 3000 to 5000 then slams into gear, the dealer just says "you need a new tranny" they dont even open them up.This SUCKS!!!! Club B5 HELP any tranny pros in the RI or MA area would be greatly appreciated.
 

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Ive never heard of anyone so far needing a new tranny. Tough luck man. :(

Look at it this way, youll be able to enjoy your passat for at least another 100,000 miles! :D
 

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I know how you feel, I have a 99 with 96,000 miles and i JUST put a new transmission in it, maybe like....a month ago. It was doing the exact same thingy you are describing and I took it to my independent shop and they told me I needed a new tranny. Don't pay the dealers price though, they're insane! I got mine online at rpiequipped.com. Got one with 16,000 miles on it for a price you wouldn't beleive, paid 400 to have it put in, all in all cost me about 1200. Not too bad. My recomendation wouldbe to just look around, you'll find a low mileage tranny for a good price if you look hard enough. good luck.
 

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Lisa Simpson
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Are you not the first owner? If the first owner, try another dealer - it should be covered under powertrain warranty.

I agree, $6K is very steep for a transmission. Please check around. Also consider a fluid flush and refill. At least take it to a VW indy shop and have the fluid level checked. If it is low, it would behave that way. You may also want to PM member Sharky. He is a bit cranky, but a certified VW tech full of good info.
 

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I have a 99 Passat sedan with a V6 and I just purchased it about 6 months ago and have the same problem about 2 months into owning it. I am pretty ticked off. I took it to a VW dealer and they changed the fluid and told me I needed a new transmission or needed that one rebuilt. I took it to a place to rebuid it because I wasn't paying 6,000 to have it replaced. They had it three weeks rebuilt the tranny and could not fix it. It still shifts the same as it did before they rebuilt it. I think it is in the computer. I read in another forum or a link I have to see if I can find it that putting a new chip in the ECU to increase performance may fix it because it changes the shifting pattern of the tranny. I've noticed with my car that if I baby it, it will run fine. If I get into it the transmission feels like it is laying on the ground behind the car. I have also noticed that using the autostick helps with the problem. But that is a pain.

Thanks,
stlrsfn001
 

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Scotty,

I wouldn't do the tranny big $ just yet if it were me. I would try:

1) Drain the 3 or so qts that come out with a simple drain.

2) Put in 2oz of Auto-RX (www.Auto-RX.com).

3) Refill with 3 qts of Redline D4 ATF or the expensive VW fluid.

Drive for 1,000 miles.

4) Pull the pan and replace the filter and fill with 6 Qts of Redline or VW fluid.

If you need help with building a DIY refill kit, e-mail me. I can get you through step 3 without using the big refill plug but only the drain plug which is an 8mm Allen.
 

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I certainly wouldn't jump on this great deal the dealership is offering. Definitely try a fluid flush and filter change. That will only cost you $150 or so.

Also, when I was faced with a possible trannie rebuild my local Cottman Transmission garage was willing to work on it for me. I am not saying this is a great way to go for a rebuild because they probably don't see many Tip trannies, but they can certainly give you a second opinion on the problem and they would at least be willing to drop the pan and change the filter. Which is more the the dealership would do for me.

Just think, $5800 damage in an accident would almost total a '99 Passat. Ouch!! That is insane. If you decide that you really need to replace the trannie, find a used or rebuilt unit and have a shop put it in. It shouldn't cost half what the dealership is quoting.

Check out the Classified Forum. I saw someone there thinking about parting out a '99 Passat.

Good luck.
 

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Over 400K miles on my baby!
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I assume that none of the posters here with problems are original owners, so the warranty doesnt go beyond 50k. Secondly, there was a couple of TSBs out long ago that had to do with erratic shifting. I think it would be worth a try to get the software updates and take it from there.
 

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That is odd behaviour, instead of "your whole transmission is dead, give me $5800 (+ labor!!)", I am wondering how much of this is possibly the TCM, or a faulty valve body, etc.?

I'd think a total rebuild is overkill. The bands and clutches are not being controlled properly, from what it sounds like. Maybe a TCM issue or poor electrical connection are at fault.

Or, I also suspect a valve body port or passage is clogging up. When the transmission is told to engage 2nd gear, the fluid pressure is too low, it does not engage, the engine revs, the pressure comes up, and it finally engages.

Not that I am an expert, but the dealer's willingness to jump on a $2500 profit over installing a rebuilt tranny in your car makes me wonder.

If you get a used one, at least you have an opportunitie to do a proper flush.

I think the lifetime it's sealed never needs fluid or work mantra is finally proving it's worth.

Just my $.02.

Good luck and let us know what happens,
Mark
 

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FastLane said:
Not that I am an expert, but the dealer's willingness to jump on a $2500 profit over installing a rebuilt tranny in your car makes me wonder.
It isn't the profit as much as no VW tech has been inside a B5 Tip enough times to be able to stand behind his work. I certainly won't.

If there is a mistake made, the customer will be up the dealers ass over and over and over, each time for free. To the customer, anyway. The tech makes zero, the dealer might eat some parts, and on and on and on.

That they don't want to rebuild a tranny is more a testament of how good the units are to begin with (since no VW tech is in practice enough rebuilding them) than dealership greed.
 

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Sharky, thank you for clarifying that. I had been under the impression, due to what could have been incorrect information from my dealership, that such jobs were profitable for them to do.

I have learned that usually what you say about Passats is correct. That being the case then it is actually a good thing, that they are not tackling projects that could really go bad and hurt the customer. The fact that very few units have been rebuilt is better, as you say, a testimonial to the reliability of the unit.

I do want to ask your opinion, though, what do you think of VW's refusal to change the transmission fluid on a regular basis? People here who have done it thought the old fluid was pretty bad, and liked that the car ran better afterwards. Would you suggest people change the fluid at 50k or 60k if they are inclined to do so?

Mark
 

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ericpeterman said:
Scotty,

I wouldn't do the tranny big $ just yet if it were me. I would try:

1) Drain the 3 or so qts that come out with a simple drain.

2) Put in 2oz of Auto-RX (www.Auto-RX.com).

3) Refill with 3 qts of Redline D4 ATF or the expensive VW fluid.

Drive for 1,000 miles.

4) Pull the pan and replace the filter and fill with 6 Qts of Redline or VW fluid.

If you need help with building a DIY refill kit, e-mail me. I can get you through step 3 without using the big refill plug but only the drain plug which is an 8mm Allen.
So how do you get through step three without the big plug?
 

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FastLane said:
I do want to ask your opinion, though, what do you think of VW's refusal to change the transmission fluid on a regular basis? People here who have done it thought the old fluid was pretty bad, and liked that the car ran better afterwards. Would you suggest people change the fluid at 50k or 60k if they are inclined to do so?

Mark
If I owned a VW anything with an automatic, that fluid would be drained and filled ever 40k. Perhaps even 30k, if I was feeling froggy.

Might change the screen/filter every 100k.

On my personal daily driver, (which is not a VW) I change it every 15k with the cheapest Dextron III available.

I have probably the smoothest, most perfect shifting 202k mile (never opened) automatic transmission on the planet.

As for the discrepancy between my idea of 40k VW intervals versus my 15k Toyota interval, that can be attributed to the VW fluid being so much better (and more expensive) than what I put in the Yota.

As for transmission jobs being profitable, it just depends on how many you do. If a VW tech was doing 3 or 4 a week, it would get profitable because he would be so much faster and more knowledgeable about them. This is not the case.

Chevy, Ford, and especially Chrysler dealers almost always have a "transmission guy." This is all he does, and he makes a ton of money doing it. Mostly because domestic transmissions fail so often.
 

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safetyfast, I had to do this in a situation where I had to put fluid in and had no access to a tool to remove the 17mm fill plug. I live 1 1/2 hr from the nearest dealer and 50min from the nearest repair garage. So this is for DIY. If you can open the 17mm fill plug, then do that.

1) Open 8mm drain plug and drain into container that allows you to measure how much you're taking out.

2) Obtain the following:
-6' 1/4" x 3/8" flexible plastic tubing.
-Clean plastic container to act as new fluid dispenser.
-1/4" vacuum tube connector (plastic or brass).
-Wine bottle cork, larger bottle is better.
-3" of copper or aluminim tubing 1/4".

3) Whittle or mill the cork to a taper so that it will screw into the drain hole with a good seal. Remove the cork and drill a hole through it longitudinally so that the 3" copper tubing can go through it with a tight fit. (You may want to glue/epoxy it). Put the plastic tubing on this metal tube. In the plastic container drill a 1/4" hole in one corner of it and put the vacuum tube connector throught the hole and RTV it or use similar flexible adhesive to seal it onto the container. Once dry put the other end of the tube onto that connector. Now you have a filler with tube that can seal into the tranny drain hole.

4) Put the cork back in the drain hole (the copper tube now protrudes into the tranny. Hold up the container and fill with same amount of new tranny fluid that you took out, PLUS SEVERAL OUNCES. Once that's drained into the tranny crawl under there with the plug in your hand. Pull the cork out and quickly get the drain plug in there and tighten it up. You'll lose a few oz in the exchange. :)

If you want to purge the system you'll want to drive the car for a bit and then drop the plug and repeat. Do this a few times.

Of course if you can remove the fill plug you can skip the cork gymnastics and just use the plasic container/vacuum connector/ 1/4" plastic tubing portion.
 
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