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Go Back   TDIClub Forums > TDI Model Specific Discussions Areas > VW MKV-A5 Golf/Jettas

VW MKV-A5 Golf/Jettas Discussions area for A5/MkV Jetta/Golf (2005/2006 PD and 2009 CR).

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Old April 1st, 2015, 06:54   #1
matus1976
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Default 2006 Jetta TDI Clutch / Transmission failure, about to buy a 2012 TDI Jetta

Hello TDI Club, I'm new to the forum. I bought a 2006 Jetta 5spd TDI new back in late 2005 and have 176,000 miles on it. On an off ramp a few days ago I had a damn hard time shifting it back into gear, I could only end up getting into second and limped to a dealership I happened to be close to. They are saying that the clutch needs to be replaced, at around $2,300 for parts, and maybe the transmission, they wouldn't know until they pulled it out, and quoted $2,400 for that. This is the 3rd time in about 4 years I've needed major clutch/transmission work that cost over 1k. Given the value of the car it doesn't seem like a great idea to spend around 5k to fix it. They are offering about $2,500 (they are being vague until I come in) for trade in on a certified pre-own VW, and I'm looking at a 2012 Jetta TDI sport wagon. But I told the guy I am not not at all a fan of VW transmissions, the TDI motor is bulletproof, but the damn transmission is garbage. He is telling me that in 2006 they used a different type of transmission that they stopped using because it had so many issues, and they are now using "DSG" transmissions.

My Question is, is this story about the transmission legit? I loved my TDI Jetta but it let me down, I was really hoping to get 300k or more miles out of it.

Matus
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Old April 1st, 2015, 08:02   #2
Lightflyer1
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Check the trusted mechanics list for someone near you. Those prices sound very high and uncertain. The link to the list is in my signature.
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Old April 1st, 2015, 12:23   #3
matus1976
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Originally Posted by Lightflyer1 View Post
Check the trusted mechanics list for someone near you. Those prices sound very high and uncertain. The link to the list is in my signature.
Thanks, it does sound high, and they were vague, I felt like they were pressuring me into trading it in and buying a vehicle asap. The logistics of getting a second opinion aren't appealing either (towing it some distance) especially if this is indeed a common failure.

Is his story about the transmissions in the 06 Jetta's being crap but replaced by a better configuration one (the DSG) later accurate? I see many mentions of the DSG in various threads
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Old April 1st, 2015, 12:26   #4
oilhammer
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The manual gearboxes in these are typically not troublesome at all. Either something is wrong with yours and it has not been fixed properly, or you are not driving it correctly.

You may just have a DMF problem, which IS common, and is 100% easily corrected forever. For a LOT less money than you are talking. Sounds to me like you need to get your car into more capable (and honest) hands to see what is really going on.
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Old April 1st, 2015, 12:49   #5
South Coast Guy
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Quote:
Originally Posted by matus1976 View Post
Hello TDI Club, I'm new to the forum. I bought a 2006 Jetta 5spd TDI new back in late 2005 and have 176,000 miles on it. On an off ramp a few days ago I had a damn hard time shifting it back into gear, I could only end up getting into second and limped to a dealership I happened to be close to. They are saying that the clutch needs to be replaced, at around $2,300 for parts, and maybe the transmission, they wouldn't know until they pulled it out, and quoted $2,400 for that. This is the 3rd time in about 4 years I've needed major clutch/transmission work that cost over 1k. Given the value of the car it doesn't seem like a great idea to spend around 5k to fix it. They are offering about $2,500 (they are being vague until I come in) for trade in on a certified pre-own VW, and I'm looking at a 2012 Jetta TDI sport wagon. But I told the guy I am not not at all a fan of VW transmissions, the TDI motor is bulletproof, but the damn transmission is garbage. He is telling me that in 2006 they used a different type of transmission that they stopped using because it had so many issues, and they are now using "DSG" transmissions.

My Question is, is this story about the transmission legit? I loved my TDI Jetta but it let me down, I was really hoping to get 300k or more miles out of it.

Matus
I prefer the DSG transmission (and I used to drive trucks with manuals). I think it is perfectly mated to the torque range of the engine. There is little, if any mileage penalty.
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Old April 1st, 2015, 13:00   #6
matus1976
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Originally Posted by oilhammer View Post
The manual gearboxes in these are typically not troublesome at all. Either something is wrong with yours and it has not been fixed properly, or you are not driving it correctly.

You may just have a DMF problem, which IS common, and is 100% easily corrected forever. For a LOT less money than you are talking. Sounds to me like you need to get your car into more capable (and honest) hands to see what is really going on.
I drive like an old lady (slow acceleration, within 10 mph of the speed limit, leave large following distances, etc) but I haven't kept up on maintenance (aside from regular oil changes) I had the 60,000 mile done at around 80,000 and haven't done one since then. 6 months ago I pulled off an exit ramp and suddenly the shifter moved freely, almost like it wasn't connected, I did manage to get into 4th, the only gear it would go into and, and crept slowly to this same VW dealer about 1 mile way. They said the connection to the shifter broke, replaced it, and it seemed fine for a while.

Then saturday on the same ramp, I was coasting in neutral to the red light, stopped, tried to put it in gear with the clutch all the way down and it was very stiff, I heard the grinding noise that sounds like two spinning gears rubbing up against each other but not meshing, like if you don't push the clutch all the way, then pulled it out and tried to go into any other gear, finally got into 2nd and the clutch was very loose (lightly pressing it would go all the way down) I crept in 2nd to my place, about 1/4" of a mile away on flat ground. I decided to take it to that same dealer, put it in reverse to back out and couldn't get it out of reverse. It finally let me out of reverse and I got into 2nd again, and crept to the dealership.

When shifting, it felt 4 or 5 times more difficult to move, and would only go halfway to where the shifter should go, and then hit some impediment, it would do this in every gear, I kept trying random ones without forcing it until it engaged one.

Anyway those are the symptoms if that helps and any one cares to read about more VW problems! Thanks for all the comments here, it's a great forum.
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Old April 1st, 2015, 17:38   #7
peobryant
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While I can't help you with your current issue, I'm with the others that say get it away from the dealer and into the hands of a guru. I recently went to a dealer (the only time I have ever taken any vehicle to a dealer) because of an intercooler icing issue woith my car. I was there over 5 hours ans was told that I more than likely had bent rods because compression was low in a couple cylinders. They quoted me $2500 to pull the head and $700 to pull the oil pan.

Not liking that, I took it to an independent mechanic (with TDI experience) who ran a compression test and everything was fine. So, the dealership I went to is either incompetent or they deliberately lied to me to try and scam me out of thousands of dollars.

I am aware that not all dealers are like that but there are enough horror stories on this forum that leads me to the conclusion that a TDI guru should be the only one to diagnose and fix your car if you aren't able to.
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Old April 2nd, 2015, 00:33   #8
wrenchman30
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coasting to stop for long distances may be your problem, depending on how the gears are made in the tranny you stop slinging oil and can burn the mainshaft washers out, your current description sounds like your clutch isn't releasing all the way
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Old April 2nd, 2015, 00:52   #9
Ol'Rattler
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oilhammer View Post
The manual gearboxes in these are typically not troublesome at all. Either something is wrong with yours and it has not been fixed properly, or you are not driving it correctly.

You may just have a DMF problem, which IS common, and is 100% easily corrected forever. For a LOT less money than you are talking. Sounds to me like you need to get your car into more capable (and honest) hands to see what is really going on.
^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

A lot of folks will mistake a clutch problem as being a transmission problem. Trying to force it in gear when the clutch does not release completly will just damage things.

The DMF clutch on these cars is garbage and is most likely your problem, that is unless you tried forcing it in gear when it wouldn't go and bent or broke something. Then you would have clutch problems and broken parts in your tranny.

Almost forgot. STOP GOING TO THE DEALER. Follow OH's advice. While you are at it, have someone ride with you that does know how to drive a stick properly so that they can point out any bad habits you have such as coasting in neutral etc.

Clearly, if you have had to have your clutch/transmission repaired 4 times in 176K miles, either something is wrong with your driving style or the shop you went to are hacks..................
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Old April 2nd, 2015, 03:27   #10
Tdijarhead
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I'm with Oilhammer and ol'rattler on this one. That transmission except for the DMF is a good transmission. You've either been taken to the cleaners, several times or someone doesn't know what they are doing.
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Old April 2nd, 2015, 04:04   #11
Mattyoctavia
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Get it to a REAL mechanic, not a stealership. Fix the fault and continue to and beyond your desired 300,000 :-)
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Old April 3rd, 2015, 09:39   #12
matus1976
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Well it sounds like from the comments here that it is likely the DMF clutch, and maybe the transmission is ok. The other times I brought it in was for a clutch issue, and for the shifter breaking loose, so they weren't actually internal transmission problems. Perhaps it's ok. They are offering 2k for a trade in on it, but without knowing the transmission is actually bad, that doesn't seem like a fair deal. If both were definitely bad, that's a different story, but right now the transmission status is unknown. I'm thinking of getting a cheaper car to use until getting my other one fixed after bringing it to a real shop to get fixed. Ol'Rattler, I'm in the Seattle area, any good recommendations for TDI mechanics?

Last edited by matus1976; April 3rd, 2015 at 09:45.
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Old April 3rd, 2015, 10:35   #13
matus1976
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I'm considering buying an older manual TDI beetle to use in the interim and keeping my car, getting it looked at by a decent local TDI specialist and fixed. But now I'm concerned about my driving habits causing problems, I'm pretty gentle on the car, but I do usually coast down large hills or when I come to a stop at a light, instead of downshifting through the gears and using engine braking. I'm learning from the comments here that isn't a great idea? That makes me concerned about going with the Beetle, maybe I'll cause the same problems there and should go with the 2012 TDI Jetta Wagon and the auto DSG
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Old April 3rd, 2015, 11:59   #14
Ol'Rattler
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Quote:
Originally Posted by matus1976 View Post
Ol'Rattler, I'm in the Seattle area, any good recommendations for TDI mechanics?

http://www.zahntechauto.com/

Matt is the TDI Guru there, but I suspect anyone there would do you right.

Before you buy another car that could need work as well, give Zahntech a call.

Coasting in gear will not damage your clutch or transmission but is a bad idea because it is unsafe. Imagine coasting down Stevens Pass using only your brakes and rear ending someone because your brakes overheated and faded and you couldn't stop.

There are other habit you may have that are contributing to your tranny's failure problems such as trying to force it into a gear when the clutch isn't releasing completely comes to mind.
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DC stage 1 SMF Clutch
Draw-Tite hitch
Dash Tray
Blue tint aspherical mirrors
Euro Cupholder
Euro Light Switch
2nd grocery hook
VCDS Hacks: DRL Disabled-Seatbelt Chime Disabled-Key fob Power Windows
Adjusted Cam to Crank Timing
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