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TDI 101 Got a simple/basic TDI question? Are you a newbie (new to the forums). Feel free to post your question here.

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Old April 25th, 2004, 20:16   #1
Rebecca
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I'm wondering if anyone has experience with older TDIs with over 200,000km on them. How reliable are they? In the case of engine problems, I have heard that repairs can be quite pricey, significantly more so than with gasoline engines. Have you found this to be the case?

Also, if I were looking into buying a used TDI from around 1994-96, are there any typical problems to look out for?

Thanks.
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Old April 25th, 2004, 21:18   #2
Wingnut
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TDI's only appeared here in Canada in the second half of the 1997 model year. So if you are looking at an early 97 or older car, it will be an IDI aka TD. They are much more reliable than the TDI's in that they are all mechanical. No computers to possibly throw a CEL and cost big $ at the dealer to fix. If you keep up the routine maintenance and use good quality fuel, it can go more than 500k km. I had 3 of them before I bought my TDI.
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Old April 26th, 2004, 06:18   #3
Toronto_Vento
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As nigel stated, you have to watch the model years. When I was looking for my car, I saw a number of people advertising TDIs from the early 90s. When I called some up, they didn't know there were different engine models, and figured if the newer diesels were TDIs, then the old ones were as well.

Passats were out in 1996 and 1997 with the TDI engine. It was then discontinued in the Passat and transfered to the Jetta ONLY (Golfs remained IDI). These were from 1997 to mid 1999 when the newer style VWs came out.

If you cannot do repairs yourself, VWs can be expensive to maintain, and the diesels even more expensive. As for being over 200000 kms, as long as the car was reasonably taken care of, there shouldn't be any big problems. Just normal stuff. Susp, brakes, tires, etc. Just be sure that the timing belt was done, and that should be about the main thing.

The IDIs apparently had some pully bolt issue where one bolt would come loose and cause interference causing the belt to snap or something, and some engine damage to occur. It isn't something which happened with every one, but it did happen. There is a fix out there, and if you need it, I can point you in the right direction.
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Old April 26th, 2004, 07:57   #4
Dragokatzov
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Hey, welcome to TDIClub
I baught my 97 Jetta with just a little over 245,000 km on it and it still works great! I did have some problems in the winter with it starting. it was very clear to me when i baught it that the previous owners, and who ever the moron was who worked on it did not know anything about these cars, one of the glow plugs was not installed correctly, something about it being in a 20 dagree angle gave me that inpression. take it to someone who knows alot about these cars and get their opinion

good luck
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Old April 26th, 2004, 11:21   #5
Dragokatzov
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[ QUOTE ]
TDI's only appeared here in Canada in the second half of the 1997 model year. So if you are looking at an early 97 or older car, it will be an IDI aka TD. They are much more reliable than the TDI's in that they are all mechanical. No computers to possibly throw a CEL and cost big $ at the dealer to fix. If you keep up the routine maintenance and use good quality fuel, it can go more than 500k km. I had 3 of them before I bought my TDI.

[/ QUOTE ]

hold on a minute, my car was made in september of 97. so is it a DI or IDI????
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Old April 26th, 2004, 11:58   #6
LNXGUY
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I have a 99.5 MKIV Jetta TDI thats pushing 215K. JNo huge issue's, although I would like to get this lack of power problem figured out..

My advice would be to stay away from any "shady" type dealers that you'd find on autotrader.ca I wouldn't trust half those guys as far as I could throw them. If looking for a higher mileage TDI a private sale would be preferred along with ALL the service records from the local VW dealership....
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Old April 26th, 2004, 18:02   #7
Wingnut
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[ QUOTE ]
[ QUOTE ]
TDI's only appeared here in Canada in the second half of the 1997 model year. So if you are looking at an early 97 or older car, it will be an IDI aka TD. They are much more reliable than the TDI's in that they are all mechanical. No computers to possibly throw a CEL and cost big $ at the dealer to fix. If you keep up the routine maintenance and use good quality fuel, it can go more than 500k km. I had 3 of them before I bought my TDI.

[/ QUOTE ]

hold on a minute, my car was made in september of 97. so is it a DI or IDI????

[/ QUOTE ]


My guess would be a TDI? But I have no idea when the switch was made. What does the badge on the trunk or grill say. If it's a TDI, it will say so. If you bought it debadged, you need to look at the engine. An IDI will not have an engine cover, the TDI does.
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Old April 26th, 2004, 19:52   #8
TDIMeister
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Could be either-or with a `97 Jetta TDI. One tell-tale way to distinguish between the two is that the TD(not I) has the accelerator cable on the top of the injection pump; the TDI has only an electrical harness.

Another way to tell: IIRC, on the A3 Jettas, the TD(not I) has a single down-turned exhaust tailpipe; the TDI has a double down-turned tailpipe.

Oh, I guess there's one other way to tell a TD(not I) and a TDI... certain to offend some zealous TD(not I) owners, in stock form they're slow as molasses in comparison [img]/images/graemlins/wink.gif[/img] [img]/images/graemlins/grin.gif[/img]
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Old April 27th, 2004, 00:16   #9
slim
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Try running a VIN check. That might tell you.
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Old April 27th, 2004, 06:09   #10
jck66
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dragokatzov, look at the build sticker under the carpet in the trunk. It should say "AAZ" or "1Z" or "AHU" in big letters somewhere on it. That's your engine code. "AAZ" is TD, the others are TDI. [img]/images/graemlins/smile.gif[/img]
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Old April 27th, 2004, 08:01   #11
jbagley
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[ QUOTE ]
hold on a minute, my car was made in september of 97. so is it a DI or IDI????

[/ QUOTE ]

The Last IDI diesels Jettas sold in Canada were the 1997.5 models. I had one that was built in August 1997. The IDIs have a 'cold start' handle to the lower left of the steering wheel and have no TDI badges on them (of course).
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