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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 September 1st, 2007, 11:58   #1
rs_us999
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Location: Smithtown, New York
Fuel Economy: 38 - 40 normal suburban driving
Default Scary brake problem

I have an '02 Jetta auto with 75k miles that has just developed a brake problem. I'm very easy on this car and still have the original brake pads. I had a bad brake switch replaced under warranty a few months ago and at that time had the brake fluid changed and brakes bled. Brakes felt and worked fine.

Yesterday I was sitting at a light with my foot lightly on the brake when the pedal suddenly moved away from my foot towards the floor. It then popped back with a hissing sound. This happened a few more times during the day. The last time it happened I was slowing down to a stop light at about 20mph. The pedal pulled away from my foot towards the floor and almost locked the brakes for a split second before popping back with the hissing noise. If anyone was too close behind me I would have been rear ended.

Any thoughts on what this may be caused by? Booster problem? MC? Anyone have a similar experience?
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Old September 1st, 2007, 12:07   #2
chrisfiat
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bad booster
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Old September 1st, 2007, 15:31   #3
neildeshpande
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rs_us999:

I have the exact same symptoms on my 2002 TDI. I suspect either the booster or the master (obviously!). The only reason I kind of wonder about it being the master is that the pedal is mushy.

Any ideas from the group?

Neil Deshpande
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Old September 1st, 2007, 20:36   #4
rs_us999
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neil

yeah, my pedal feels a littly mushy too now. I spoke with the stealership today. The mechanic said it could be the master or the booster or both. I'm bringing it in on Wed. I think its going to be expensive. Anyone have any idea on the cost of a MC and/or booster change?
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Old September 1st, 2007, 21:02   #5
Canadian_Grizzly
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Listen carefully cause it will save you a bunch of money... your master is fine... these are classic symptoms of a bad brake booster. Replace the brake booster and everything will be fine, I know because this happened to me. http://forums.tdiclub.com/showthread.php?t=104656 That was almost 200,000km ago and master is still going great!
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Having trouble with limp mode... Troubleshooting Low Power

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Last edited by Canadian_Grizzly; September 1st, 2007 at 21:05.
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Old September 2nd, 2007, 06:02   #6
rs_us999
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Thanks Grizz and Chris

How hard was the booster swap? Is it pretty involved? It looks like you have to remove the MC to get at it? I'm pretty handy, but I won't be doing anything as complicated as a TB change. Did you buy the parts from the dealer?
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Old September 2nd, 2007, 07:29   #7
rs_us999
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Sounds like another booster problem.

http://forums.tdiclub.com/showthread.php?t=188741
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Old September 2nd, 2007, 07:44   #8
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Its a pain and you need a special tool to do it... this is in the How-To's http://forums.tdiclub.com/showthread.php?t=87039 Hope it helps.
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Old September 2nd, 2007, 07:52   #9
Yelram
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Dont change the booster until you try lubricating up under the brake pedal. Pull back the white plastic cover and spray some lithium grease in there. It will fix it right up.
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Old September 4th, 2007, 09:43   #10
rs_us999
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Yelram
Thanks!!!!!!!
I did what you said and I have not had the problem in 2 days. I can't believe this is a permanent fix, though.
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Old September 4th, 2007, 09:46   #11
Yelram
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rs_us999
Yelram
Thanks!!!!!!!
I did what you said and I have not had the problem in 2 days. I can't believe this is a permanent fix, though.
It totally is, i've put like 7000 on since it happened on mine. I guess its called something like an "atmospheric switch" or something that gets jammed without lubrication. I took it to the dealership and they were ready to change the booster. I also had a problem with my instrument cluster not reading the PRD123 or the odometer. The dealership said new cluster. I said contact cleaner. Its worked fine ever since.
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Old September 4th, 2007, 10:06   #12
rs_us999
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Thanks again. I'll run with the lubrication fix for now. It's saving me a ton of money. I'll let you know if I have any more problems with it. I agree with you on the dealer's eagerness to replace your cluster. These guys don't fix anything - they just replace parts. They actually don't have the financial incentive to fix things - they make more money on the part and charge you the labor time anyway.
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Old September 4th, 2007, 20:42   #13
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Keep us posted... I have heard of this and tried it myself to no avail but if it works thats great!
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Having trouble with limp mode... Troubleshooting Low Power

Having trouble searching? Read this thread on advance search in forum http://forums.tdiclub.com/showthread.php?t=133579
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Old September 4th, 2007, 22:03   #14
TornadoRed
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I had a vacuum hose leak that affected the brake booster. In my case the effect was a hard pedal that resulted in very poor braking power.

I do not know the symptoms of a bad brake booster, but it seems to me that it should be increased brake effort and much longer stopping distance. A pedal that sinks to the floor just doesn't seem like the result of a failed brake booster. Am I completely wrong?
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Old September 4th, 2007, 22:11   #15
Matthew_S
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Quote:
A pedal that sinks to the floor just doesn't seem like the result of a failed brake booster. Am I completely wrong?
Sometimes the booster goes bad in a way that causes it to actually pull the pedal down with out anyone actually pushing on it. It won't actually go to the floor but it will move down on its own. It sounds like that is what was happening to rs_us999.
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