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Coil Pack Rant

1144 Views 11 Replies 9 Participants Last post by  NEWMAN'SOWN
D/W just called me. Wagon suddenly started running like crap on the way to kid's school. :thumbdown Auto Club to the rescue. It'll be sitting on the front curb at home shortly. Sounds like the AWM ate yet another coil pack. :mad:

Why do these coil packs die so easily? :confused:

If it turn out to be the same cylinder is something going on? :rolleyes:
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It was those Bremi coils that, from ~2001 to late 2003, made VW wish they'd chosen a different coil pack supplier. I've also read that the connector (between CP and plug) they used also had issues - maybe not as robust as those used on the AEBs.

Since I also have an AWM, I'd be interested in hearing from anyone who has done a "maintenance upgrade" to the OE coils so they only fail an average of one coil pack every 5-6 years...anything more frequent isn't acceptable (spend more cabbage now so I won't have to **** with ignition issues in 2-3 yrs).

As an aside, the 17 yr old Beru coil packs and Bosch ICM in my '99 AEB are still going strong.

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We had a coil pack go out last year right after going to Stage 1 on our '05 AWM Passat. Replaced one coil pack and this year I replaced the other three for peace of mind. Not sure what type of coil packs they were--I know they were sold by a dealership on Amazon, and matched the new one we bought at a dealership last year. If anyone is interested, I can check what kind of coil packs these are and report on their longevity.

Seems like coil pack issues are not just limited to the AWM engine platform though--I had one go out at about 35k on my '09 GTI and one at ~80k on my current ride, a '12 CC. Both equipped with the 2.0 TSI. Because of these instances I now keep a couple spare coil packs in the trunk of the Passat and CC for use as spares in the event of a failure. It's so easy to change out a coil pack that I'd kick myself if another went out while I was on a trip or something and I didn't have a spare to replace it with.
I've never had a coil pack problem over two Passats and 160,000 miles. The coils were replaced once each car under the recall programs, not because they were acting up. I carry a spare coil because of the complaints here, but I dispute that they "typically" fail every few years.
I've seen more issues from the wiring/connectors rather than coil packs. Those wires come down the railmand make a 90* turn into the connectors which are plastic. 90* turns on top of an exhaust manifold (even with a heat shield) with plastic and wires lead to brittle wires and possible intermittent conditions.

I've only had one coil pack fail and that was recently on a car I picked up on CL for $500 and had generic coil packs (no markings or identifiers at all)

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That 90-degree turn at the rear of the head caused problems for me while my '04 was only a year or so old; I think it took the tech several hours to track that down.
heat is usually the culprit, I have seen a leaky valve cover gasket allow oil to "swamp" them and the continuous heat/cooling compromises the bakelite insulation,and if cleaned are probably already compromised,(just a matter of time then) ,the connector on the end of the wiring harness cracks/deteriorates from heat alllowing disconnection,and if it is random as it seems most of my electrical problems are it can be deteriorating over a relatively long time,the idea of carrying an extra one especially on a long trip is a great idea,will definately do that
I had one of the old "B" version packs fail. (These were from the first factory recall.)

I now have the newer "D" versions all around. (These are what they installed for the second factory recall.) We keep one or two spares and a cheapo generic OBD scanner in my wife's car (2001 AUG) and my elder son's car (2002 AMB) to avoid getting stranded on the road.
P0302 this time. The one that bonked four months ago was P0301. Who wants to guess which one is going out next? (I've got three more on order.):thumbup:
I highly recommend upgrading to V10 R8 coil packs. You'll need an adaptor kit for B5/5.5's but it's what I run on all of my cars now and I have yet to experience any of the failures I was before. It's important to keep in mind that coil pack failure can be a symptom not a cause. If you are frequently blowing coilpacks you need to ensure that they aren't being taken out by oil leaks from dead/dying gaskets/other sources of oil leakage.
My plug coil wells are dry as a bone. New VC gasket last year. I think it was just a bad set of coils. I've seen some people run those taller coils without using the adapter plate. Wondered if that was a good idea or not.
My plug coil wells are dry as a bone. New VC gasket last year. I think it was just a bad set of coils. I've seen some people run those taller coils without using the adapter plate. Wondered if that was a good idea or not.
I wouldn't recommend it.
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