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VW B5 Passat TDIs This is a general discussion about B5 Passat(>98 (2004-2005 in North America)). Non TDI related postings will be moved or removed.

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Old March 27th, 2020, 11:51   #1
borninabus
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Default My Thread for Advice, Guidance & Stupid Questions

i think it's high time i started a thread for myself. this site has been an incredible resource and i thank you all for your contributions that i have found through diligently searching.

my history:
i am a lifelong VW enthusiast, passenger and driver with a heavy lean towards the buses/vanagons. still have my first car which is a 71 Karmann-Ghia and i also currently own three vanagons, one of which is a Syncro. while i am no stranger to mechanics, repairs and maintenance, (was employed as a professional vintage VW mechanic for some years) i am on a learning curve when it comes to "new" cars and diesels and turbos and whatnot. this is my first "new" car. i LOVE it!



my car's history and current state:

B5.5 Passat Wagon
Purchased with approx. 150,000 miles
timing belt was "done @ 80k" and guessing by the slight vibration around 2k RPM, the BSM was deleted at that time. the belt looks to be in good shape and i will know for sure when i do it myself, which is coming up quick! (no documentation was provided with the car). i immediately replaced all the filters and drained the the engine oil/trans fluid with properly spec'd stuff. it needs very typical maintenance and repairs for a vehicle of its age: misc front end work, engine mounts, minor tears in axle boots, better shocks/struts. all things that i will address as time, money and necessity dictate. i do not have VDCS or a Bentley manual, but plan on purchasing both sooner rather than later.




my goal here is to to ask some questions that are not easily searchable and/or of relevance to my particular car or are of a general (Passat TDI) automotive nature...and of course to document my journey from TDI novice to TDI expert.



thanks for looking and first questions incoming
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Old March 29th, 2020, 06:47   #2
1.9glstdi
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Welcome to the rare beast club!
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Currently: 2005 passat waggon 2.0 PD unchained, stage 1 tune
past:
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2005 4dr Golf, Reflex silver,BEW PD
I Have vcds KII-usb for 2005 and older
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Old March 30th, 2020, 08:18   #3
borninabus
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so here is my current situation as i can best describe it:

CEL been on since bought. was able to clear it with a OBDII scanner, but it came back on as soon as i stomped it. only code the OBDII showed was "steering angle sensor, int"....whatever....it has really always been a bit sluggish off the line with a pretty noticeable "kick" @ 2000rpm. the quality of the shifting is a bit erratic as are the shift points. Ive had some hard starting when it’s “cold”, like below 40deg and in the same situation, i can hear one of the fuel pumps very audibly as if it's air locked. it will sound normal with a couple key cycles. Also, the torque converter lock-up acts strangely. As in, I can physically see the tach drop (in 3rd especially) when It locks up and when cruising, if it comes out of lock, it doesn’t want to go back in without some “encouragement” and sometimes not at all.

so here is where i begin to research, and as you know there is a TON of info on this site! and experiences that range from nightmare to run of the mill when you start searching out some of these well documented issues. Kind of intimidating. But, being who I am, I will troubleshoot and perform some maintenance to the best of my ability before I assume the worst.

My first query was to check out the CTS and unplug it to see if the glow plugs would cycle in “dumb” mode. I quickly found out was a real bear to get to the sensor and It became apparent that removing the ASV & EGR would provide better access. “great”, I thought. Perfect time to clean them up and once I had them removed, realized that if I just got the flex pipe off I could also clean the turbo with some oven cleaner. So that’s what I did. The EGR was FILTHY as was the ASV and once I got them cleaned up, I can see the EGR is not closing. The turbo actuator arm is working properly and just from the look of my trained eye, could be moving more than 10mm.

Upon reassembly, the car shows “emission workshop”, has ZERO power below 2000rpm when cold and It will puff smoke right when it takes off. White smoke when it’s lagging and then a big black puff when the turbo kicks in. I can modulate the available power by either easing into the throttle or changing position. Once warm, it will act like it always has…..but if I hit it right in the sweet spot, there is no power surge and the shifting is butter smooth. Running with the EGR unplugged will change the way it acts, but I’m not sure which way it acts “better”. If unplugged and plugged back in while running, it will do the EGR is fuct thing where it misses, surges and sounds like holy hell. It sometimes smooths itself out or it will just go back to normal when restarted. I took the MAF off and cleaned it, removed the snow screen. All filters are new. No change. Have not tried the EGR block-off yet, need to make a plate.

So, in continuing my research, here are the possibilities that I have formulated:
1) Intake leak: smoke test needed. Of course, I double checked all my work and everything looks to be in order. Judging by the condition of the EGR this car has had an intake leak for some time. RIGHT?
2) MAF or CTS not working/out of spec: is there a way to ohm test them? The glow plugs DID NOT cycle for 20sec with CTS unplugged…..hint here maybe?
3) N75 not regulating properly: N75 is the boost pressure regulator, RIGHT? Will be checking out test methods.
4) Throttle position input not being received: being drive by wire and a diesel, I’m not sure how this is even processed by the EMS, so I will need to get educated.

Some other things could come up if I have it scanned again, which I will do soon. I can also take it to a “good, reputable” mechanic who is not a TDI specialist and have it hooked up to VCDS, but I want to make sure I have all the info I can so we can share in eachother's knowledge and head down the right diagnostic workflow.

Sorry for being so long-winded but I feel full disclosure is important here! If I need to better organize the info here or isolate one issue from the next in individual posts, let me know. I will get to the bottom of this and am hoping you all can help!

Thanks

Last edited by borninabus; March 30th, 2020 at 08:22. Reason: clarity
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Old March 30th, 2020, 09:19   #4
1.9glstdi
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Get your car VCDS scanned for sure.

As far as intake leaks common mass failure points are the 90 elbow on top of the motor splitting on the bottom side (you will have to feel for it or remove the hose to see), and the turbocharger outlet hose getting rubbed by the starter cable (check it every oil change and adjust as needed. But normally if it is an intake leak you will have a mess of oilspray around the fitting that is leaking.

But your lack of power before 2000rpm can cause your trans to not want to shift correctly, I had a soft shift condition I could not figure out until I got an under boost code. I replaced all the vacuum line to and from the n75 valve and the n75 valve and there was a drastic power improvement. The shift quality was also dramatically improved as well as mpg.

As for EGR I blocked mine off shortly after the n75 valve replacement. There was a fair amount of build-up in the intake around the valve 220k miles at the time. I used a shop vac to suck the larger pieces out of the intake. But when you block it off you will get a CEL unless you have the car tuned.(I have a malone stage 1 tune)

Good luck
Robert
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Currently: 2005 passat waggon 2.0 PD unchained, stage 1 tune
past:
2002 Jetta ALH,5 speed swap
2005 4dr Golf, Reflex silver,BEW PD
I Have vcds KII-usb for 2005 and older
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Old March 30th, 2020, 09:35   #5
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You really need to embrace the car's OBD... it works. My guess is you have several problems. But a suitable scan tool is going to be required to get anywhere. Don't throw parts at it. Don't take things apart and look at them. Don't drive it. Don't guess.

Get a proper scan tool.

OBD works.
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Old March 30th, 2020, 16:42   #6
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having some trouble hooking up a Veepeak OBD adaptor through Torque PRO app on android. any suggestions?
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Old March 31st, 2020, 03:10   #7
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www.ross-tech.com
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Old March 31st, 2020, 07:58   #8
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i'm quite aware of ross-tech, thanks.
just not into throwing down the $200 right now.

EGR blocked off with part of a guinness can and all is well.
i'm working with the valve right now to see if i can bring it back to life.
not sure if i want to take it all the way down to the solenoid.

still working to get this wireless OBD to work....

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Old March 31st, 2020, 09:17   #9
zzdiesel
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I just think of VCDS as a required car part.
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Old March 31st, 2020, 19:37   #10
borninabus
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i get it! ross-tech!

so as of right now it appears i was able to repair the EGR valve and it is currently working. engine is warm from the day, though. we'll see how it acts in the morning and how long it continues to function beyond that.

was able to get my wireless OBD to work and cleared all the codes and and so far, no CEL. assuming it will come back on when the TC starts acting up and comes out of lock. code i did get was the TCC solenoid stuck off, don't remember the number.

so....is the solenoid integral to the trans/TC?
down this rabbit hole now...

Last edited by borninabus; March 31st, 2020 at 19:39. Reason: clarity
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Old April 1st, 2020, 03:20   #11
oilhammer
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You need a new torque converter.
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Old April 1st, 2020, 06:59   #12
1.9glstdi
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I would drive it and see if it was a lack of power issue or if the code comes back. If it comes back then like oil hammer said you need a tq converter(600-$900) or a 5 speed swap ($1200)from dutch auto parts.
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Currently: 2005 passat waggon 2.0 PD unchained, stage 1 tune
past:
2002 Jetta ALH,5 speed swap
2005 4dr Golf, Reflex silver,BEW PD
I Have vcds KII-usb for 2005 and older

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Old April 1st, 2020, 08:02   #13
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A TC should be less than that and a swap likely more.
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Old April 1st, 2020, 09:43   #14
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List price on a new Sachs (ZF) converter from Volkswagen is about $1300. Just the part. You'll need another ~$100 worth of fluid, and of course you have to take the transmission out, which is 7 hours labor if you are paying someone to do that.

Many folks have had good success with a converter from Eriksson Industries, their number is 800.388.4418.

The price of a manual swap is much more variable, as it depends on what you are using, where you get it, and who installs it. There is no set price for this.

I suspect that either will be too much for the OP, as a VCDS purchase already has his pooper puckerin'.
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Last edited by oilhammer; April 1st, 2020 at 09:59.
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Old April 1st, 2020, 10:52   #15
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i like some salt just as much as the next guy, but jesus! why the negativity?

rest assured that i'll get VCDS and the best TC i can get my hands on when i have determined that i NEED it!
thanks

i am more than capable of using my brain and hands to diagnose & repair my vehicles, just like i have done for my paying customers in the past, who actually like me beyond being their "mechanic".

i know that a new TC is more than likely in my future, but i will not just assume that because someone says so.
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