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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 January 3rd, 2018, 03:57   #16
oilhammer
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And we have had several of the middle revision BHW cars that simply refused to start in the cold, sometimes not even *that* cold, like 25 F. VAG missed the ball on that one. Rocketchip had no issue making them start with the 5V Bosch plugs though. Mine has that combo right now.
Pretty sad that a fellow in PA can make Volkswagen's diesels start better in the cold that Volkswagen can.
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Old January 3rd, 2018, 13:40   #17
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Ours would originally start at -20 fine.

I seldom started it cold though, at least used the oil pan heater.

Its slowly gotten less happy, 0 is about the limit now.

New battery made no difference.

I have lost count of how many times they replaced the glow plugs.

First time I had to force them, they got it when they pulled out the original ceramic GPs and one was almost burned in half.

Then each time it was in after that they did it again! Had no records of it being done.

I have a battery heater as well as the Circulation Heater (that is a wonder) and no issues.

No Vagcom (yet)
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Old January 3rd, 2018, 16:01   #18
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Correct with the explanation below QuickTD. I had to ship my ECU to TD Tuning to do the re-programming, including the processor flash. Robby installed the ceramic NGK glow plugs and he did a great job with installing the manual transmission. Everything works like OEM (gain about 15% in MPG average), no engine lights. If I find somebody in the Houston area with a VCDS I will look for the ECU part number to verify as you state below.

The battery is fairly new, two year old, group size H7, AGM with the required electrical specs for the B5.5 TDI. There are of course other variables such as an ageing starter, etc. But the fact that cycling the glow plugs so many times 'fixed' the cold starting tells me I need to look more in that area perhaps.

Thanks for all your contributions to this thread 👍

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Originally Posted by QuickTD View Post
Pretty easy to check if you have the
correct software for the NGK's. Scan the ECU with VCDS and look at the ECU part number. The last digit indicates the revision level which, in the case of the Passat, indicates glow plug type.
Part numbers ending in "T" are for the newest NGK ceramics. "N" ECU's use the 5V steel bosch plugs that don't work very well and "R" is tuned for the original bosch 7V ceramics.
To switch glow plug types it is necessary to change the processor flash as well as the data. This normally requires bench flashing the ECU. The processor flash can't be changed via OBD2, except at a dealer. They have secret tools...
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Old January 3rd, 2018, 19:02   #19
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If you find someone to scan the car with VCDS, have a look at torsion value as well.

Cam timing can have a significant effect on starting as injector cam lobe position dictates the available injection pressure at start of injection. Badly retarded cam timing will make the car harder to start. If you find torsion value lower than -1 I would bump it up to 0 or 1 and see if it makes a difference.
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