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Hi all,

I'm definitely a beginner when it comes to fixing my car, so I'd love some help on this. 2005 passat 1.8l, 120k miles.

Driving down the canyon a couple weeks ago I noticed a clicking noise, discovered the bottom of the fan on the front part of the engine was rubbing up against something down there.

Fast forward a few days ago, the car starts driving really poorly. Rough idle and loss of power, but no check engine light. The idle doesn't fluctuate, it just stays consistent around 800 rpms.

I'm looking around the hood and find this fan missing almost half the blade. Could this be the problem that's causing the engine to run poorly? What's the part called? Is it something I could replace myself? Any other problems I should be worried about (bad motor mount causing the fan to rub, etc)

Any and all help would be appreciated!

Jonah
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That is a clutch-driven cooling fan. The clutch is in the fan assembly itself and is temperature sensitive and engages when it gets hot to help cool the engine.

You'll need to put the front into 'service position' to change it out but other than that it shouldn't be a tough job. You could probably find a replacement at a junkyard if a new one is too pricey.

Checking the engine mounts is a good idea and that can be easily done by opening the hood and watching how much the engine moves when it is given a little gas while holding the brakes to keep the car from moving. If the engine heaves a lot then the mounts are shot. Or you can look for purple fluid leaking from the engine mounts between the engine and the sub-frame. There is also one snub mount on the front of the engine that fits into the radiator support. That one can only be checked visually and you'll get a good look at it once the car is in service position.

I can't think of a way the cooling fan being broken would cause to not run well. It will make the rotating parts of the engine unbalanced and that could cause some problems or seem like a poorly running engine. The fan should get fixed regardless of whether it has anything to do with the poor performance though.
 

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The easiest thing to do would be to replace just the plastic fan blade piece.
Here's one for a V6. Don't know if the fan is the same for the 1.8 or not.
fan blades
 

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The car could run hot with the fan broken and it's possible the flying parts of the fan damaged a vacuum line.
 

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The car could run hot with the fan broken and it's possible the flying parts of the fan damaged a vacuum line.
I'm honestly surprised the radiator hoses are still fully intact and that there's not a giant gouge out of the radiator itself.
 

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First pic I said, "Ah O.K.", last pic I said "Oh Wow" , As PZ said possible vacuum line as one goes right behind fan in routing with turbo coolant line. Clips in timing belt cover.
 
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