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Discussion Starter #1
I own a 2003 Passat GLS Turbo, manual. I contacted the dealer about the 40K service, and they said that it includes flushing the coolant/radiator, and replacing the fuel filter. But if you look at the service required, in the manual or on the VW site, they do not list these things. The fuel filter and the coolant/radiator service are never mentioned. Who is right, the dealer or the manual? Below I copied what the manual and VW site say:
Your NEXT Scheduled Maintenance is at 40000 MILES
Items to be Serviced:
Engine Oil - change
Engine Filter - change
Timing Belt - check
V-belt/Ribbed Belt - check
Spark Plugs - replace
Air Cleaner - replace filter
Windshield Washer Fluid - check level
Automatic Shift Lock-check operation
Brake System - check damage/leaks, pad thickness, fluid level
Wheels - rotate from front to rear
Air Bag System - check function/damage
Battery - check electrolyte level
Engine - check for leaks
Pollen Filter - replace
Cooling System - check level
Transmission - check for leaks
Tires/Spare - check condition
Driveshaft - check boots
On Board Diagnostics -check Diagnostic Trouble Code memory
Door Hinge - lube
Headlights - check and adjust if necessary
Exhaust System - check for damage and leaks
Sunroof Frame - clean and lubricate
Road Test-check system functions during and after
Power Steering - check fluid level
Brake Fluid
Check Automatic Trans. Fluid and Differential for leaks, level; add if necessary
Front Axle - check dust seals, ball joints, tie rods

Some people have told me that the dealer probably has old information, but this is no excuse. If the dealer does not know, then this is ridiculous, specially since they are charging you for things you do not need.
 

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That's exactly what it is. Don't blame them for having more vision than VW does on fuel filters and the like.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
If you look at the scheduled maintenance, there is no mention at all about replacing fuel filters or coolant. It is not mentioned in the manual, and in the VW site, as I posted above.
So now the dealer knows more than VW about what needs to be done to my car? You could be right, but I doubt it, since they can never answer any technical questions and use the excuse that, being a new car, they do not have much experience with it.
As far as the dealer having more vision than VW, maybe you have had different experiences (and I envy you), but the dealers I visited have only one vision: Say that whatever is wrong is functioning as normal.
Another related thing: My dealer's oil change includes some type of oil additive. The manual clearly states not to use oil additives.
 

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Ok, VW has designed fuel filters that last forever.

They also have coolant that lasts forever. And transmission fluid.
 

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2003PassatTurbo said:
If you look at the scheduled maintenance, there is no mention at all about replacing fuel filters or coolant. It is not mentioned in the manual, and in the VW site, as I posted above.
So now the dealer knows more than VW about what needs to be done to my car? You could be right, but I doubt it, since they can never answer any technical questions and use the excuse that, being a new car, they do not have much experience with it.
As far as the dealer having more vision than VW, maybe you have had different experiences (and I envy you), but the dealers I visited have only one vision: Say that whatever is wrong is functioning as normal.
Another related thing: My dealer's oil change includes some type of oil additive. The manual clearly states not to use oil additives.
If you are so unhappy go to another dealer, problem solved. As for the fluid flush and the filters, that is not required maint., but it is a really, really good idea. The dealer puts it in for more than just making money, most likely. The car will last longer and run better and so when it is time for the next one you will be happier with it and more likely to buy another one from them.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I am not disagreeing with you, what you said makes sense. Specially about the fuel filter, I do not see how it could last for ever.
Still, this could be better communicated. For example, the manual could say something like "These are the necessary services. Your dealer might have additional things that we reccomend".
 

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2003PassatTurbo said:
I am not disagreeing with you, what you said makes sense. Specially about the fuel filter, I do not see how it could last for ever.
Still, this could be better communicated. For example, the manual could say something like "These are the necessary services. Your dealer might have additional things that we reccomend".
If it should be in the manual that way, then quit dogging the dealer out for trying to do right by you.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
It almost seems as if we are talking about two different things. The problem is that I can't trust the dealer. I guess you have a perfect dealer, but I do not. In all of my oil changes, they overfilled my oil, by large amounts. Once, they overfilled it way up until that first plastic insert in the dipstick is located. When I told them they overfilled it, they said I had to make another appointment and come back. So you see, after this, and other experiences such as these, how can I trust the dealer, unless VW corroborates what they say? This is not my ideap of the dealer doing right by me. Everybody knows that overfilling the oil is bad. And unfortunately, my bad experiences (I will not list them because I do not want to bore you) are not limited to just one dealer, but to the dealers in my area.
 

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I agree.. it's absurd how dealers try to sell your their OWN maintenance schedules to make money. On my Honda, the transmission fluid isn't called to be replaced before 60,000 city miles (110,000 under normal conditions), and the dealers want you to replace it every 15,000! WTF? Plus, it's unbelieve what they charge for visual inspections of stuff that any old person could check.

My car has never been to the dealer for sched. maintenance because, the manual states clearly that this stuff doesn't need to be replaced that often, but if you're paranoid, Honda also has a DIY section where they explain how to perform all routine maint. on your car. I don't believe VW does this in their manuals (they didn't on my 98). I'll bring my car in at 110,000 miles for a timing belt replacement and that's it!
 

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sfrich19 said:
I'll bring my car in at 110,000 miles for a timing belt replacement and that's it!
It's 105k, so you'd better study that manual some more.

Also, study all the threads all about broke belts and blown heads here at CB5.

Hint-they didn't happen after 105k.

But if a dealer told you to change the belt before then, you'd call him a liar.

Good idea.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Sharky said:
sfrich19 said:
I'll bring my car in at 110,000 miles for a timing belt replacement and that's it!
It's 105k, so you'd better study that manual some more.

Also, study all the threads all about broke belts and blown heads here at CB5.

Hint-they didn't happen after 105k.

But if a dealer told you to change the belt before then, you'd call him a liar.

Good idea.
Geez, what is your problem, having a bad day? So the guy brings it in at 110 instead of 105k, big deal. By the way, you are not required to study the manual, but read it and have a general idea of when maintenance is required. For example, every 10-20k you would look at it to remember what needs to be done.
Also, I would call dealers dishonest, when they go against what VW says without a reasonable explanation. And many people have experienced that.
But whatever, you think you are right, and that dealers are gods, so good for you.
 

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2003PassatTurbo said:
So now the dealer knows more than VW about what needs to be done to my car? You could be right, but I doubt it, since they can never answer any technical questions and use the excuse that, being a new car, they do not have much experience with it.
I think you may want to consider another dealer. You don't ever have to take a dealer's recommendation for face value, you have to use your own discretion as well - after all, it is a 2003 with 40K miles on it. You may not even need the things they mention. The manual will never cover everything and the dealer will never cover everything.

Sharky is our resident VW specialist and he probably has seen more than his fair share of Passats and the like.

As far as the person above who wants to change his/her belt at 110K, do a search and read the posts - you should change it at 60K - BUT the manual doesn't tell you that.

Sharky - play nice... :lol:
 

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Not to hijack a thread, but Sharky, when would you recommend a coolant flush? I brought my car in for some other non-routine stuff, and the SA looked me in the eye and said something like "VW is really strongly recommending that you have a coolant flush" and it cost $129.95. I went for it, figuring its not really necessary, because I was expecting to get warranty work done on my cats, and I figured dropping the $$$ would bring me some good karma, and it sounded like a reasonable thing to do. This is at almost 3 yrs, 19000 miles. My impression of the whole thing, and also after reading up on it here (after the fact) that this was some what of a money grab. But correct me if I am wrong, and please spare me of your wrath :eek:h: .
 

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You may be right... but one thought just struck me over the head: Imagine the challenge of writing a maintanence schedule for a car (or at least a particular make or model) that really has no history and hasn't really been road tested. In other words, VW is kind of playing a guessing game when it writes the rules... It seems only reasonable that the dealer should revise a maintanence schedule after getting to know the car and its behavior over the years. Of course, this may be N/A for a 2003, or for a dealer that isn't trustworthy...

One other point: sometimes it works the other way... about every garage will tell you to change the oil every 3K miles, while I believe the manual (and dealer) say that every 5K is fine. OK- now I'm ducking for cover.. after :nervous: defending... the STEALER! :suspicio:
 

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NYC4ever said:
Not to hijack a thread, but Sharky, when would you recommend a coolant flush?
Well, that is where the dealership this thread is about isn't playing fair.

Every 50k is ample on a VW that uses G12. On a year and a half old car, I wouldn't even bother till 80 or even 100k.

G12 is great stuff, IMHO.

A good rule of thumb might be every 4 years whether it needs it or not...

Of course, you can simply test the fluid and know whether it needs changing, too.
 

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Sharky said:
sfrich19 said:
I'll bring my car in at 110,000 miles for a timing belt replacement and that's it!
It's 105k, so you'd better study that manual some more.

Also, study all the threads all about broke belts and blown heads here at CB5.

Hint-they didn't happen after 105k.

But if a dealer told you to change the belt before then, you'd call him a liar.

Good idea.
I was talking about my Honda. On my Honda the change interval is 110,000. and no, most likely it's not going to break prematurely ;-) Honda is a little better in the honesty department. and if it does break, my engine in particular is a non-interference engine. VW has a few things to learn...
 
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