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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hello All,

I have a 2000 1.8T Passat with 50000 miles on it. Got it APR chipped Oct '05. It ran fine for over a month and then suddenly engine died when driving at slow speeds in heavy traffic :banghead: . Engine will crank but will not start. :rolleyes: The ABS and Battery icon on dash lighted up. All the gear showed up as selected on the dash (see pic below). Got it towed home. Found it was a bit low on oil. Topped it up and it worked fine. Same thing happened again after few weeks. Oil level was fine. Towed to dealer and he said that O2 Sensors were failing. Got that replaced. Ran fine for few weeks and then same thing happened again. Engine died at low speed. Got towed to a local VW expert. He checked it next day and claimed that it started right up and nothing was wrong with it. He checked lots of things and found that spark plugs, transmission and coil packs were fine :whistle: . Nothing mechanically wrong with it. Drove the car around and same thing happened again in few weeks :banghead: . Got the car towed to my home and is sitting in my driveway. I am thinking chip might not have been installed properly. It had to be soldered on. Did anyone here have similar probs? Any input help will be much appreciated....

 

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The inverse text on your gear selection display means the transmission control module (TCM) is alive and awake, but in emergency running mode. This can happen for a variety of reasons, but it can definitely happen if the ECU has gone missing. The TCM expects to be able to communicate with the ECU bidirectionally and will get upset if it can't. Same for the ABS/ASR controller. The battery light is on because your alternator isn't doing anything, what with your engine not spinning and all that. :)

Simple diagnostic: the moment you turn your key on (do this without attempting to start the car), almost all the dash warning lights will come on for a second and then most will go out. Your check engine light (the yellow/orange motor-shaped one, right below the ASR light you have on) should be on for a second or two along with the rest of the lights, and then go out. If your CEL does not come on at all, your ECU probably has issues. That you'll have to take up with APR, or be prepared to pony up the big bucks to the dealer to replace it, but at least you know where the problem lies. If the CEL does come on and then go back out, you have something more interesting going on. You will need to obtain the services of a VAG-COM to find out what's going on, or just take it to the dealer.

Addendum: I just checked my car because I wasn't absolutely sure of the above, and my CEL is on until I actually start the car. Since we don't see the CEL in your picture, your ECU is almost certainly out to lunch.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
jyoung8607,

Thanks for your quick input.

I agree with you. Since the CEL does not come on, looks like ECU has taken a dump on me. I will pull it out and send it to APR to have it looked at. Might be bad soldering. I hope I don't have to replace the ECU. It was fine for all 5 years untill I got it chipped at an APR Dealer.

Thanks again. You have a nice day!!!:thumbup:
 

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I had a similar issue with my 2000 B5 1.8T recently, I sent it to APR for warranty repairs...all is well now...
 

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David G or Fred Hybrid also had issues with an APR modified ECU and had it taken care of expeditiously. Hope your follow-up with them goes well...
 

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I don't like the APR daughtercard one bit! I had to remove one recently as part of a re-chip, the "feet" were more like "pegs" that just stood on the pads, you then have to try and pool up solder around them to attach. The one I removed was pretty neatly done, but I've seen some that were not-so-neat.

My main beef is the stock chip uses a true gullwing lead that has more surface area IMO plus a *much* lower mass, and it sits right on the board...ie less likely that shock/vibe is going to affect a solder joint. plus it is easier to solder it down and more secure.

I know companies make the gullwing version of the leads for use with daughtercards, not sure why they were'nt used on the chip I saw.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I opened the ECU and noticed that the flux was not cleaned off the board when the new chip was soldered. How you clean the board when you solder something goes a long way to add to the reliability of the board. I have shipped it to APR. Hopefully I will get it back in 2 working days.

Thanks for all the input from the members. I really helped me to decided which way to go. Local dealer and the mechanic were not able to isolate the problem and went on trial and error path to fix it. It already cost me more then $1000 for a problem that did not get fixed.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks of input from all of you. I had sent out the ECU to APR and they confirmed that the chip was bad. They replaced it and sent it back. Upon installation in the car, it started up immediately. :thumbup: I had opened the ECU to inspect it before I had sent it and it had all flux from last soldering on it but when it came back from APR it was spanking clean. I hope that it will last this time and have seen last of the problems.

Three cheers for APR. Got my ECU back in my hand in less then 48 hours after it left me....:lol:
 
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