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VW MKIII-A3/B4 TDIs This is a discussion about MKIII-A3/MkIII Jetta/Golf (<99.5) and B4 Passats (96,97) TDI's. Non TDI related postings will be moved or removed.

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Old February 28th, 2012, 21:17   #1
kooyajerms
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Default Fixing B4 Front Seat Guides / Wobbly Seats

*I'm sure this would apply to an A3 but someone should confirm that for me.*

Does your seat wobble? Does it topple to the side as you take a tight corner? Does it shift up and down as you hit the brakes hard? Check your guides.
As I would take some hard turns my seat would shift, and make the sensation that my suspension was crappier than it actually was. Made turns feel so loose and wobbly. No bueno! After replacing the inner guide, my sharp turns feel so much stiffer, so much more solid. It makes a difference in the drive.

Here are your part numbers. Fairly cheap still at about $15-20 for all 3. Buy them from your local dealer or 1stvwparts.com. The inner and outer guides are interchangeable from driverside to passenger side seats (just reverse them).
front guide
435881203a
retail $9.87 or $5.12
inner seat guide piece
191881213 909
retail $9.87 or $5.12
outside seat guide
171881213 b 2vk
retail $6.98 or $3.62

*First step is not necessary for the job afterall* First take off the cowling with 3 phillips screws (front, 2 that hold the adjusting handles) and pulling the adjusting knob.

Pull the cowling off away from the adjusting knob, and then on the front/side under the seat there is a black clip holding it to the metal frame. Get ready for some possible plastic breakage.

Here is your front guide for you wobbly folks that go front to back.

On the front of the seat, remove the lock by squeeze the end and pushing it through. (this lock keeps the seat from pulling back all the way on the guides)


In the rear, take off the caps of the guide rails so you can pull the seat all the way out (allowing you to attach the plastic guides)

Outside, use a screwdriver, press through the rail and then pull the cap off

Inside, pull the long cap out by hand

Seat is pulled all the way back past the rails and you replace the missing or chewed up guides. (Only my inner guide was missing)
outer

inner


Grease the rails with a dry lube.

Put the seat back into the rails with your new guides. Put the rear caps back on, slide the lock back in and put the cowling back on.


Enjoy your solid feeling front seats again.

Last edited by kooyajerms; February 29th, 2012 at 17:53.
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Old February 29th, 2012, 04:59   #2
TonyJetta
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J-
Thanks for posting this!

I have been considering replacing the bushings for the last several months. I just keep having larger problems creep up.

Tony
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Old February 29th, 2012, 05:42   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kooyajerms View Post
*I'm sure this would apply to an A3 but someone should confirm that for me.*
.
.
First take off the cowling with 3 phillips screws (front, 2 that hold the adjusting handles) and pulling the adjusting knob.


Here is your front guide for you wobbly folks that go front to back.


Enjoy your solid feeling front seats again.
Good info, cheap fix too.They DO make a big difference. My comments are:
1.) Is the above step necessary? I don't think so and would simply leave all that intact.
2.) While you are at it, remove the seat entirely (requires only unplugging the seat belt connector underneath, unless you have heated seat then there's an additional connection) If you recline the seat about 1/2 way, it will come out the rear door fairly easily! This gives you full access to the seat tracks themselves. If your seat does not slide front to rear easily, the likely cause is the worn plastic guides, and a bunch of built up crap in the channels. A quick cleaning and light greasing (I recommend Super Lube) ...will make a BIG difference.

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Old February 29th, 2012, 05:59   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jetter_Sprinta View Post
Good info, cheap fix too.They DO make a big difference. My comments are:
1.) Is the above step necessary? I don't think so and would simply leave all that intact.
2.) While you are at it, remove the seat entirely (requires only unplugging the seat belt connector underneath, unless you have heated seat then there's an additional connection) If you recline the seat about 1/2 way, it will come out the rear door fairly easily! This gives you full access to the seat tracks themselves. If your seat does not slide front to rear easily, the likely cause is the worn plastic guides, and a bunch of built up crap in the channels. A quick cleaning and light greasing (I recommend Super Lube) ...will make a BIG difference.

Exactly!
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Old February 29th, 2012, 10:27   #6
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Jeremy,

Very nice write up with great pictures. Thanks for all the part numbers!

One issue. Lug_Nut posted NOT to lubricate the seat rails because 1 -that holds grit and dirt, and 2 - the guides are self lubricating.

But I do think using a dry lubricant would be a good thing and not hold any dirt or grit on the seat rails.

When I find his old post, I will edit with the link.

See post #4: http://forums.tdiclub.com/showthread...ht=lubricating
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Last edited by john.jackson9213; February 29th, 2012 at 11:00. Reason: added link
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Old February 29th, 2012, 13:30   #8
TonyJetta
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Speaking of lubrication...what about using a dry silicone lube? I found some a couple years ago at the RV store. It's dry, and specifically mentioned to be odorless.

Tony
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Old February 29th, 2012, 15:18   #9
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Any dry lube sounds good to me.

Graphite powder was the first to my mind. Might be a bit messy and wastefull to apply. Silicon spray sounds easy to me, but not sure how long it will last. I like the idea of a dry silicon lube. I will check out a couple of RV supply houses on the weekend.

Cleaning seat rails and polishing the seat glides made very little difference when I did it. Will try the dry lube if I find it this weekend. If that does not help, I'll order new glides for both seats from 1stvwparts.
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Old February 29th, 2012, 17:47   #10
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You just gotta think, they were gliding around in there without all this lube we're adding to it for hmmm 12 years? It's all in the glides.
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Old March 1st, 2012, 07:10   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kooyajerms View Post
You just gotta think, they were gliding around in there without all this lube we're adding to it for hmmm 12 years? It's all in the glides.
..and the glides wore out! Maybe they'd still be good if there were some lubrication? Eh, probably not, IDK.
Good point on grease attracting dirt though. It's the big and sometimes sticky stuff dropped/spilled etc that make their way into the tracks that cause a lot of the problems though. I've seen some pretty rough ones...french fries seem to gravitate there!
Of course, if you are the sole driver of your B4, this seat track/glide ease is not so much of an issue. Jetter & I are swapping cars often enough where smooth running seats are worth the minor effort. (I think she would be happier if I never moved the seat from her far closer and higher position )

PS: Super Lube also available in spray form.
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Last edited by Jetter_Sprinta; March 3rd, 2012 at 16:52.
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Old March 1st, 2012, 08:58   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kooyajerms View Post
My collection = a french frie, a quarter and two pennies.
I think the french frie cost more than the coin!

Tony
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Old March 1st, 2012, 09:08   #14
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I found 53 in Terry's B4, most of it embedded hard into the floor coating so they were a pain to remove.

Her seat tracks were so rusty the seat still barely moves even after I cleaned them.
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Old March 1st, 2012, 11:58   #15
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I'm amazed that for the last 10 years on this site, I haven't seen a single post about broken B4 lumbar adjusters. Both of my B4s' adjustors broke early on in their life and I can't believe I'm the only one. It was one of the first things I noticed after acquiring them and one of the first things I fixed.

I don't mean to hijack the thread, but figured since it doesn't really seem to be an issue for anybody it doesn't deserve its own thread.
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