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I replaced all the calipers, rotors and pads with the complete Powerstop OE kit from Rock Auto this past weekend. I had to bleed the brakes twice. The first time, I don't think the back end of the car was completely level or slightly above the front - I got the STOP warning and the pedal feel was not returning. The 2nd time through, it was properly elevated, and a lot more air came through the front lines - now the pedal feels right, again.

Now on to replacing the clutch master cylinder, slave cylinder and interconnect line to try and get a better clutch feel.

Also, seeing some of the recent posts here on coolant leaks...I have slight drip now out the passenger side (I'm at 120k miles now). Hopefully that can hold off without too much coolant use until the timing belt needs to be done again.
 

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Replaced the exhaust flex joints, again. This is the 4th time they've been replaced in the 85k miles and 8 years I've owned the Passat. The last 3 times I had a shop replace them. This time, a friend of mine helped me weld them up.
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These are the old flex joints...
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Having to do this so frequently, I would suspect failing engine mounts/etc. Something's not right.
I agree. I replaced the engine mounts not too long back - I'll have to check my logbook to see exactly when. And, one of the shops in a previous replacement cut loose one side of the support bracket between the cats on the left side and never welded it back.
We welded it back down as part of our repairs this time, though.
 

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Having to do this so frequently, I would suspect failing engine mounts/etc. Something's not right.
So after reviewing my repair logbook, here's the history:
  • 72,208 miles- The original engine mounts were leaking. I replaced them with 034 Motorsport street rubber mounts. I also replaced the snub nose mount. The NVH has been fine with the 034 mounts, and as far as I can tell, with 125k on the car now, it is the same and has not noticeably degraded.
  • 72,955 miles - the flex joints were replaced at a shop. These had already failed before I replaced the engine mounts. I wanted the new engine mounts in place before I went through the trouble of replacing the flex joints.
  • 97,553 miles - exhaust flex joints were replaced, again.
  • 120,868 miles - replaced the transmission mounts with Üro parts
  • 121,019 miles - replaced the exhaust flex joints, again
  • 127,400 miles - replacing the exhaust flex joints, again. One was definitely bad, and since I had access because I am also replacing the transmission, we did both.
The 034 Motorsport engine mounts are not hydraulic, like the OE ones - maybe that is a factor for the repeated failures, then? Or it could be in sufficient repairs previously, too? I didn't watch those, so I have no idea whether they removed the cats to get good welds or just tried to do it all with them still on the car, etc.
 

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Think I found the source of the whine on deceleration from my original transmission:
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Based on another image of a still-good input shaft bearing that I found, it looks like the bearing cage failed on mine. It is in pieces and loose behind the ball bearings in my picture, and I try to show it in the video linked below, too.

Here is that image of a still-good input shaft bearing:
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So, on mine, all the ball bearings are still there, but they are no longer spaced correctly because the bearing cage failed and this allows more play in the input shaft when the bearings are not set evenly around the shaft. This is why there was excessive play. I wonder if this also then contributed to alignment issues which contributed to the synchro wear shown further below.

This is on a GFN 5spd transmission with 125k miles. I would say the noise was always present (I bought the car with 39k miles). The transmission oil had ~40k miles on it when I drained it now, and it was black. By comparison, I'm changing the oil on the replacement transmission (with unknown mileage), and its old oil was golden brown that you could see through.

And I think this picture may explain why the original transmission had started popping out of 3rd and 4th gears under load:
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But I'm not as familiar with transmission internals, so if someone can explain or confirm what I'm looking at. I believe it is a worn synchro for 3rd or 4th gear (it looked the same for both syncheos on the 3 / 4 shaft.

Here are some short videos looking at each of these items, too:
 

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Rockauto. I get them for a few $ each on close out. Valeo, trico, etc. I have a small stock for each vehicle.
I do that, too. When I have an order for RA, at the end I'll add wipers or oil and air filters (if they ship from the same warehouse as other items in my order) until just before the shipping amount increases.
 

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Replaced the OE PCV valve and hoses on our '04 2.8L V6. There was buildup in the hoses, but nothing completely blocked - these originals have 125k miles on them. The PCV valve itself was a bit heavier than the new replacement, so it likely had a lot of internal buildup, as well.
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I did have to find a different size of o-ring to use on one of the fittings. I'm not sure if the trouble getting the hoses to fully seat to the F-pipe was because they were purchase from different sources (the F-pipe came from China), but I would recommend to test-fit everything together off the engine and make any adjustments there, before installing everything.
 

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Put the new registration tag on the license plate.

On another VW issue, I thought I'd ask the brain-trust here, since the door lock actuators are the same between the MK4 and B5's, AFAIK. Anyone had a door lock actuator make a slight noise, but not actually lock/unlock the door (the locking pin doesn't move)? I'm trying to solve this on our 01 Jetta Wagon...details here, if you can help. Thanks!
 

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I fixed that bad door lock behavior on my Mk4 Jetta - @VAGguy , as you suggested in that other thread, the problem was corrosion at the door harness connector at the base of the driver A-pillar (pics are in that thread). The corroded contacts were corrected, and all is working again.

Obligatory B5 content: now that this last item on the Jetta is fixed, I'll be putting it up for sale and our Passat will then be the only VW in our fleet.
 

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Trying to install a subwoofer in the spare tire well of our wagon...I have questions here:

As for what we did on it today, I added some R134a for the summer (along with some UV dye). This is the first time I've had to add refrigerant in the 8yrs we've owned the wagon. Hmmm... AC is blowing cold at <50deg F, now.
 
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