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VW MKIV-A4 TDIs (VE and PD) This is a general discussion about A4/MkIV Jetta (99.5-~2005), Golf(99.5-2006), and New Beetle(98-2006). Both VE and PD engines are covered here.

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Old December 10th, 2017, 12:50   #1
Mawcus
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Default Intermittent Random Hard Start Problem 2004 Jetta

2004 Jetta 5-Speed 180k miles. Ive been having random hard start problems. Really random. Seems to be no consistency as to when it will take a long time to start. Recently there have been some cold frosty mornings and it fires up right away. Takes longer to start after its warmed up and I go somewhere and try to start it again. Sometimes just a few cranks and other times 10-20 seconds of cranking. I suspect air is getting into the fuel lines but haven had a chance to install new lines. I guess it could be timing related. There really is no distinct pattern or consistency when its hard to start but very rarely does it fire up at the first bump of the key as it should. I get everything from a second or two of cranking to having it crank for 10 or more seconds and having to try 2-3 times before it fires up.

Cam is good, new stage 2 cam a few years ago. In tank lift pump has been recently replaced. New alternator, pulley and voltage regulator. Serpentine belt and tensioner is new. Battery is new.

Any info is appreciated.
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Old December 10th, 2017, 13:51   #2
joep1234
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Have you scanned it? Look at you temp sensor with the scanner. It may be out of whack. Also is your starter spinning it up to speed every time. The ECM won't start fueling until it hits 250 rpm.
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Old December 11th, 2017, 15:57   #3
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coolant temp sensor was new 2 years ago. tach works when cranking. fired up instantly this morning in sub freezing temps
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Old January 22nd, 2018, 20:30   #4
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Well, got around to replacing the fuel lines and Iím still having the same starting issues. No different than before replacing lines. Not sure what to check next. Need to check timing but dont have VAGCOM. Also considering replacing crankshaft speed sensor. Until I check the timing and replace crank sensor Iím stumped. This vehicles has not had any off the glow plug recalls done so i guess thats an option too but during cold starts first thing in the morning it instantly fires up. The colder the better. Im baffled
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Old January 22nd, 2018, 22:02   #5
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Is it possible that it fires up great when cold because of the glow plugs but takes a long time to start when warm because the glow plugs dont kick in.
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Old January 22nd, 2018, 22:17   #6
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Even though the in tank pump has been replaced recently, it may be coated with soot. You should be able to hear it when you first turn on the ignition.
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Old January 22nd, 2018, 22:53   #7
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In tank pump seems to work fine. Nice swoosh sound when i turn the key
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Old January 22nd, 2018, 23:05   #8
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http://forums.tdiclub.com/showthread...27#post5372227

This post about glow plugs might be helpful. I put new 7 volt glow plugs in with a ECU tune and it took care of my hard starting problem. It is a relatively cheap thing to try since your car didn't have either of the recalls done in the past. You can buy them for around $100 on ID parts but you would need to have a tuner or the dealer update the ECU.
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Old January 23rd, 2018, 08:02   #9
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Started car this morning. Fired up pretty quick. One little stumble then it fired up. Noticed that the tach didnt move. Turned car off. Started again instantly but still no movement on the tach. Turned it off and on few more times and it was the same. No tach but started instantly. Drove 20 minutes to park amd ride for work. Turned car off then started it. Took a long time before it started and it stumbled a little bit. This time i did notice the tach move several hundred rpms or so. Started it again. Long time cranking and tach was dead then jumped up to where it was before. Maybe this is an indication of a bad crankshaft speed sensor. Should the tach move during started ups every single time and to the same rpm level?
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Old January 23rd, 2018, 11:58   #10
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Seems like it should.
The fact that it starts good cold makes me interweb guess it's not air in fuel. Doesn't sound like glow sticks either.
I think you are now on the right track.
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Old January 23rd, 2018, 18:12   #11
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Yeah, should show about 250 RPMs while cranking during start-up!

Remove the CSS and clean it ... might solve the problem.
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Old January 27th, 2018, 12:20   #12
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Well ordered a new Crankshaft Sensor and installed it last night. Car started up great several times over and over. 1-2 seconds of cranking max. the glow plug lights were blinking for several seconds until i turned the key for the first time but once i turned the key it fired right up and the glow plug lights went out. CEL kicked on too then went away once it was running. didnt have time to do a test drive last night and didnt want to deal with any potential issues or get stranded on friday night. started it up this morning feeling pretty good about solving the starting problems. fired it up and it didnt start right away. cycled the key a few times, tried to start again. seemed to spit a little and misfire. Then it started. started it a few more times and it consistently took 2-3 seconds to fire up. Not too happy. drove it around the hood till it warmed up then parked it. started it again several times and it consistently took 2-3 seconds to start. last night it damn near started right away. thats why i'm not too happy about how it starts. tach seems to be responding when its cranking which it wasnt doing before. I guess i will c how it starts throughout the day. as usual I thought I had it figured out last night when it fired up like it should but i guess not...
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Old January 27th, 2018, 13:18   #13
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Also getting a G40 Camshaft Postion sensor fault code when I scan with VCDS Lite. clear the code and it comes right back. CPS has been replaced recently so I don't get it.

Been cruising around town doing stuff and it still has longer than normal starts. its behaving differently than before I changed the Crankshaft sensor but still taking too long to start. stumped and pissed
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Old January 27th, 2018, 15:41   #14
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Did you use a OEM/VW or an aftermarket sensor? These cars can tell the difference. A lot of the aftermarket parts are made in China. Just crap. Even NAPA is getting a lot of their parts from over there.
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Old January 27th, 2018, 16:11   #15
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shouldve been OEM/VW. got it from a reputable vendor
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