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Go Back   TDIClub Forums > TDI Model Specific Discussions Areas > VW MKIII-A3/B4 TDIs

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 23rd, 2017, 13:02   #16
rocketscience
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I looked into the ARP studs, but they're way out of my budget, that would pretty much double the cost of the whole job. I think if I make sure everything is flat and cleaned up I'll be in good shape.
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Old February 23rd, 2017, 17:11   #17
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Bringing up a good point about studs. Some people have had good luck pulling one bolt at a time and installing studs (one at a time).

-Todd
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Old March 8th, 2017, 22:53   #18
rocketscience
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So, I have everything collected and am ready to remove the head but I've been wondering if this would be a good time to re-ring the pistons. The car uses oil, a pretty large amount, about 1 qt/1000 miles and has the whole time that I've owned it, about 50k miles. I've just ignored it and been vigilant with checking the level, but I'd really like to at least reduce it. The low end has 360k and I've read that a lot of these are still in great shape at that age, but I'm wondering if my oil control rings aren't doing their job

More background info:

The car has a couple leaks but never leaves any spots on the ground.

I've checked the turbo shaft and it doesn't seem to have too much play side to side, zero play in and out. There isn't any oil on the tail pipe. The CCV is sucking a decent amount of oil but I don't think its anything out of the ordinary, the intercooler had about a half a cup in it and its probably been 15k since I've checked it, maybe more.

If I loosen the oil cap while its running it just kind of wobbles there, so the blow-by doesn't seem too excessive, which probably just means the compression rings are good and maybe aided by seeping oil.

It starts right up but smokes a little on start up, which I know is totally normal. I keep meaning to check after its sat a shorter period of time but keep forgetting. There have been a couple instances in the past where I've been driving downhill on a cold motor in gear and its taken a couple minutes for it to stop smoking. Smoke looks white.

The glow plugs are sooty but don't seem oily, unless that soot is just burned oil. At least the 3 I could remove. The second one barely turns and I'm afraid to mess with it until I commit to parking the car for a few days. I really hope it isn't cross threaded, but it looks like there is some brown residue in the depression around that plug and none of the others. I'm going to check for bubbling around it. I really just don't want to mess with it, but i guess with the head off i should take care of it. If I can get it out in one piece and the threads aren't buggered would chasing the threads be good enough of a solution?


The previous owner supposedly put a new or rebuilt head on about 70k miles ago, so it should be in good shape. The last time i had an emissions test the tech was stunned at how low the readings were. I will probably still change the valve seals.


I've also considered running BG109 for a couple of consecutive oil changes, but the cost/effort of just doing the rings when the head is already off is about the same. Any thoughts on this? I'd like to order parts tomorrow and get rolling on it ASAP if I decide to do this.

Last edited by rocketscience; March 8th, 2017 at 23:01.
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Old March 10th, 2017, 13:17   #19
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Anybody have any thoughts on this? I bought parts but can always return em, I'll definitely check the bore wear before proceeding.
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Old March 10th, 2017, 14:29   #20
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Personally, I think you're opening a can of worms. While I'm doing this, I may as well do that....

How long are you planning on keeping this car?

-Todd
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Old March 10th, 2017, 15:25   #21
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For sure, I'm pretty aware of that and don't want to slide down the slippery slope... it'd be a real shame to do more work and not have any effect, or worse, have a negative effect. But I'd also like to keep the car for as long as I can keep it running, within reason. Honestly if it was ever hit or wrecked I'd probably try to put the motor in something else.
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Old March 10th, 2017, 16:06   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rocketscience View Post
Anybody have any thoughts on this?
I personally think the time to ask this question is once you get the head off and can examine and measure the bores.

Once you know the wear you can decide how many miles left before a rebuild is required, or if a light hone now is all it needs, or...

Any sort of ridge at the top will also be a big clue.
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Old March 10th, 2017, 16:21   #23
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Thanks for the replies, that's kind of what I've been thinking to, if there's a ridge or too much wear or vertical scratching a ring job wouldn't be any good, and I'm not ready for more drastic measures financially or time wise at this point. I ordered everything I'd need to do rings so that if I decide to go that route I won't have a bunch of down time. Are there any other clues I can use when visually examining the cylinders/pistons with them still in the car that would help me decide if I should replace the rings, particularly the oil ring?

Last edited by rocketscience; March 10th, 2017 at 16:24.
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Old March 10th, 2017, 16:37   #24
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If you have it apart might as well just put the new rings in imho. Make sure all the ring gaps and clearances are good. There's probably a spec on ring tension if you want to get anal or real precise, new rings would probably require a light hone to break in right. If there's much of a ridge at the top it should probably be cut down so it doesn't interfere with any new parts if you put any in. You just have to make the judgement calls.
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Old November 10th, 2019, 11:57   #25
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This is a very long overdue followup for this thread but maybe it will help someone. I replaced the head gasket, the head was within tolerance in flatness but I did sand it slightly with sandpaper glued to a section of granite counter top. The head gasket didn't show any obvious signs of leakage. After getting it back together there was no more persistent pressure in the system and I stopped losing coolant.

I ended up finding a pretty badly eroded piston and slight cylinder wall scoring in one cylinder. My guess was that it was from excessive EGT's on mountain passes from the larger nozzles the PO installed. In vagcom the nozzles showed very similar fuel usage across the four, so I don't think one was leaking. I ended up getting two new (used) pistons from Frank who also balanced the set and gave me a ton of advice (thanks Frank!). I honed the walls thoroughly until my fingernail didn't catch the scratches. They all measured well within spec with a micrometer. I put in new rings, bearings and replaced pretty much all of the engine seals, vacuum pump seals etc.

In the several thousand miles that I drove after this, oil consumption was a little less but still close to where it was before. I know my repair could have been more thorough but also suspect that the car needed a turbo, that the seals were leaking. I also installed an EGT gauge and could definitely see where I was probably pushing the limits before.

Anyway, I hope this helps someone. I sold my TDI a while ago and have not been on the forum in ages but am really grateful to everyone here for all of the knowledge shared, it helped me out big time.

Cheers!

Last edited by rocketscience; November 11th, 2019 at 02:56.
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Old November 10th, 2019, 16:50   #26
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Sweet. thanks for the update!
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Old November 18th, 2019, 15:16   #27
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Rocketscience, thank you so much for the update!
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