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Well, I took off my oil cap today to clean around it, since I was cleaning the engine bay... I noticed a small amount of crap built up beside the cam lobe, which I assume is 'sludge'. Is this common with the 1.8t motor? I talked to the guy who owned the car before me from 0-67k and he said he was 'pretty good' about getting the oil changed. What can this mean condition wise of my engine?
 

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“Small amount of crap” is a relative term. Yes, the 1.8T’s do build up oil sludge. However, if the oil was changed at the regular intervals (5k), I do not believe many owners will contradict that the sludge build up should not be significant.

I have used Gunk detergent twice on my 1999 B5 AEB; I have owned the car since it had 5k; so I know how it has been cradled. You may want to try the Gunk flush. However, the manufacturer states that if the car has over ~35K (I cannot remember the exact mileage on the statement) you should remove the oil pan and clean out the oil intake screen (PITA for our engine; not normally done).

Additionally, if the crud build up is actually that bad, you may want to replace the turbo oil feed line (part ~$75.00). Oil starvation to the turbo is sudden death. I am not trying to make you paranoid. I would only do this if you have confirmed oil sludge build up.
 

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Ooinn99 said:
I do not believe many owners will contradict that the sludge build up should not be significant.
Is that a triple negative?

If the owner said he was "pretty good" about changing the oil,he meant it was done once or twice.
I would drain it, and use a screwdriver to check the bottom of the pan for sludge.
Or use an oil vac and check for sludge when it is cleaned out.
 

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I read on audizine that the 2004 a4 1.8t's come with a larger oil filter. I wonder if we will see those installed for all 1.8ts at our next oil change.
 

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3.7 quarts or what-have-you, even calling it an even 4 quarts, is a paltry amount of oil for a turbo. This is especially bad given that the manufactuer decided to get marketing-cute about not recommending the use of synthetic oil and leaving turbo badging off the car, thereby downplaying the importance of changing the oil....
 

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3.7 qtz is ridiculously for a hot running turbo engine. Many of us b5ers including myself are running with either the over-sized Napa oil filter - P/N: 1333 or Wix - P/N: 51333 (aka "big kahuna"). These over-sized oil filters will add an additional quart of oil to the much needed 1.8T small oil sump.
 

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I purchased a big kahuna, the newer oem filter (now specd for 2003 and 2004) and an oem for my '99. The big kahuna holds about 1 qt, the newer oem filter about 3/4 qt and the original oem about 1/2 qt.

I am now using the big kahuna, since an extra half qt is better than nothing. The filter did cost me $13 bucks, though.

I just read today that AAA members can get 7% off at Napa. Regardless, I am of spending $40 to change the oil myself since this is my baby.
 

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If you decide to remove the sludge, please don't use a solvent-based chemical flush. Use www.auto-rx.com instead. If you don't believe the claims made for it, just go to www.bobistheoilguy.com and see how many "oil nerds" use auto-rx vs. the chemical flushes.

It's easy. Change oil filter NOT the oil. Pour one bottle of auto-rx into your engine. Drive it for 1500 miles - this is the "cleaning" phase. Auto-rx is gently cleaning deposits, removing them in small particles that safely pass through all oil passages and bearing surfaces, to be trapped by the filter. (The solvent-based flushes can remove sludge in large chunks - not good.)

Then change the oil and filter, using dino oil. Run another 1500 miles. This is the "rinse" phase, and typically your oil will get blacker during this phase than the "cleaning" phase.

Then change your oil & filter again using the oil of your choice.

A severely sludged engine may require 2 bottles of auto-rx - there's instructions on the website.
 

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FormerGSRdriver : Search for posts with my user name and you'll locate the ones on oil pan removal and sludging. I've been through it all. Here's what I would do to avoid the more extreme problem$ I faced:

I'd go to Auto-RX.com and order 3 bottles of the product and follow the instructions (You get a discount for being a club member). It is a gentle long term cleaner that won't harm seals and won't drop a bunch of the gunk and coked oil down into the pan to get sucked up to block the oil intake screen. I would do the longer procedure that uses 2 bottles (sludge removal procedure). Use the 3rd bottle for maintenance doses after that. BTW, this will probably also fix any cam seal leaks you might have.

Options other than that are not great. A motor flush at an oil change place will cause all the sludge to dump into the pan. That is what caused my downward spiral. I wouldn't do it. A quick self-flush will have the same effect. Both these solutions are harsh solvent based and can damage seals. In either case the stuff can get sucked right back into the intake filter on the pump and it can zap the turbo, as has been mentioned above. One could drop and scrape out the pan, but that is a very long procedure.

I wish I'd done the Auto-RX when I was at your stage... while I still had good oil pressure.
 

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ganseg said:
I purchased a big kahuna, the newer oem filter (now specd for 2003 and 2004) and an oem for my '99. The big kahuna holds about 1 qt, the newer oem filter about 3/4 qt and the original oem about 1/2 qt.

I am now using the big kahuna, since an extra half qt is better than nothing. The filter did cost me $13 bucks, though.

I just read today that AAA members can get 7% off at Napa. Regardless, I am of spending $40 to change the oil myself since this is my baby.
I use the "big kahuna", too.

And my AAA membership has paid for itself with what I've saved at NAPA.
 

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Amen, spread the good word, Brother Eric! :wink: :D

But, watch out for me, I'll get you hooked on some good stuff... :suspicio: ... :lol:

I am still just amazed at how well Redline oil does in my engine. I've run dino (only briefly), Royal Purple, M1, and Redline. Using the very "unscientific" but perfectly valid "it feels like water" test, here's how they stack up:

RP = 2K
dino = 2K+
M1 = 3-4K
Redline = 7K+

Yeah, that's right - when I was using M1, I felt like I had to change it every 3K, because when I'd let it go to 5K it would feel like water when I drained it.

Now that I use Redline, my oil changes are at 5K. I let it go to 7K once, and it still felt like oil when I finally changed it.
 

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I did the AutoRX and then went to the Redline 5w30 a few months ago. Rusty and EricPeterman are right, I love it now...feels smooth. It's quieter and I feel better about protecting my turbo AND there is less wear on startups with the synthetic. The longer life of the oil is nice but honestly I change it at about 4000 miles, (but I know if I get busy I could go more). If I want to save a few dollars I'll drink a few less mochas each week. :)

Next is Redline D4 ATF

The boistheoilguy.com site is really helpful if you have questions on oil OR AutoRx, Frank at AutoRx is really great. I would avoid the other type engine sludge removals.

By the way, I suggested AutoRx for someone I work with and he put it into his old high mileage landcruiser that was running rough....he told me he is now getting noticibly better mileage and it is running super smooth now.

Good luck :)
 
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