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Road Trips Discussions about road trips you have made with your TDI.

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Old August 10th, 2017, 10:54   #1
Join Date: Feb 2017
Location: Saskatoon SK, Canada
Default 2003 Jetta TDI Road trip (Saskatoon Sask. to North California)

Just wanted to share a recent 2 week long road/mountain bike trip experience with my MK4 ALH Jetta (sorry no pictures loaded as of yet). We made several overnight camping stops along the way down to San-Francisco. Starting in Saskatoon SK. the first stop was Fernie B.C, then Rossland B.C, then Oregon and finally made our way down to San-Francisco. On the return trip we cut straight across back to Saskatchewan. Overall did roughly about 3700 miles of driving without any major issues. Only reported issue was going into limp mode during some long mountain grades. The car was heavily weighed down with gear, backseat and trunk packed to the ceiling. As well as (2) mountain bikes on the hitch rack. Only modifications are a Malone stage 1 tune and skid plate. We averaged about 50 to 60 MPG (Canadian Gal.), which I cannot complain about. I plan to clean the intake manifold which will hopefully alleviate any further limp mode issues.
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Old August 10th, 2017, 14:00   #2
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Join Date: Feb 2017
Location: Denver (ex MN)
Fuel Economy: 35 to 50

Not sure if you got a code for the limp mode you could check even if the engine light is not on there may be one. I am not sure what all the malone stg1 tune changes. If the boost limiter by atmospheric pressure was not set properly and left stock you were probably over boosting in the thin air. Looking at my malone eco tune in a map editor confirms that this is the case for my tune. 2150mbar limit at 700 mbar ambient is not good. Could be sticky vanes or actuator too.
EDIT: It is possible that another method of boost control for altitude is in the tune other then the boost limiter. I am not a professional just relaying my observations.
DLC520, Mufflerectomy, tuned, more linked below
My car thread

Last edited by h4vok; August 10th, 2017 at 14:40.
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Old August 10th, 2017, 14:34   #3
Join Date: Jul 2016
Location: Vancouver

All of our tunes of course account for altitude, it'd be very unprofessional if they didn't. Normally don't throw codes for limp mode, it'd be best to do some boost logging.

(are we supposed to use imperial gallons in Canada..?)

Dealers - malonetuning.com/dealers
We made a free VCDS Log Viewer!

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Old August 10th, 2017, 15:47   #4
Join Date: Feb 2017
Location: Saskatoon SK, Canada

I plan to do some boost logging once I get a VCDS. I am pretty sure that the turbo/actuator is sticky, since I don't think that the PO drove this car properly. The car is running 100% better than when I bought it mostly from just "exercising" the throttle on the highway. Limp mode did not produce a engine code during the trip. I use imperial gallons which renders a higher number, its all preference.
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Old April 9th, 2018, 13:04   #5
Join Date: Feb 2017
Location: Saskatoon SK, Canada

I just wanted to do an update on this post. This last weekend I pulled the intake manifold for cleaning as I had suspected it to be carboned up and causing a limp mode condition. The intake manifold was actually not as bad as I thought it would be. While I had everything apart I took the vacuum actuator off the turbo to check vane movement. They were free but still sticky, which I suspect was the original problem. Using a small vacuum hose and penetrating oil I fed some oil through the EGR port and it seemed to free the vanes up in about 15 minutes. I also took out the snow screen and cleaned it ( it was about 1/2 full of bugs and dirt). Overall the car is running great and I have not been able to make it go into limp mode. The true test will be on a mountain pass.
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