Advice re 2006 Golf TDi purchase

maddog2020

Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2020
Location
CA
TDI
2014 JSW TDi
I'm thinking about buying a 2006 Golf TDi - I think this particular car is still a Mk4 even at 2006 - I know it has the 1.9 motor, which I thought was only on the Mk4 - if I should be posting in the Mk5 forum, then please let me know.

Anyway, the car has 130k miles and is an auto. I'm looking at this as a car for my daughter to use through college - with a fair amount of freeway driving to and from college thrown in, so reliability and fuel economy are both important. I believe the 1.9 diesel motor is considered to be highly reliable, and it know it satisfies the fuel economy need.

What do I need to pay close attention to, to ensure I'm not getting into a money pit? Per Carfax the car has no accidents or incomplete recalls, but also from Carfax there hasn't been a lot of regular maintenance (at least not the Carfax shows, which means it could have been done religiously at an independent shop, or could have not been done at all. Are there specific things I should anticipate replacing? Particular warning signs to look for?

Is it going to get expensive to maintain this? I've seen some with very high mileage, are they considered pretty solid?

Any advice will be much appreciated.

Thanks,

Ian
 

Tdijarhead

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Nov 10, 2013
Location
Lawrenceville PA
TDI
2003 TDI Jetta Daughters Car, 2001 TDI Beetle, Daughters car, 2005 Golf TDI Mine, all 5 spds
I put no stock in carfax. Talk to the previous owner. My 05 has absolutely no carfax activity since I’ve had it and that’s the way I want it. Mine now has 364k and climbing. I’ll be doing the timing belt before the end of the month.

Do you do your own work? If you pay someone to keep this car up it’s going to cost you.

Yes an 06 Golf is still an MK4 with the BEW engine. Those engines do have a cam problem and need the proper oil.

You do realize this young girl is going to have to remember to put diesel and not gasoline in the tank and even if she does well with that, if she loans it to a college friend I can guarantee they will put gasoline in it.

The biggest issue is it’s an automatic which while somewhat better than the previous generation, there’s still lots of dead vw’s because of their automatics in the junk yard from the 04-06 years.

Get a stick teach her to drive it and none of her friends will ask to borrow it.
 
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maddog2020

Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2020
Location
CA
TDI
2014 JSW TDi
I put no stock in carfax. Talk to the previous owner. My 05 has absolutely no carfax activity since I’ve had it and that’s the way I want it. Mine now has 364k and climbing. I’ll be doing the timing belt before the end of the month.

Do you do your own work? If you pay someone to keep this car up it’s going to cost you.

Yes an 06 Golf is still an MK4 with the BEW engine. Those engines do have a cam problem and need the proper oil.

You do realize this young girl is going to have to remember to put diesel and not gasoline in the tank and even if she does well with that, if she loans it to a college friend I can guarantee they will put gasoline in it.

The biggest issue is it’s an automatic which while somewhat better than the previous generation, there’s still lots of dead vw’s because of their automatics in the junk yard from the 04-06 years.

Get a stick teach her to drive it and none of her friends will ask to borrow it.
Re previous owner - the current owner (seller) is a dealer who bought the car at auction last year so there is no maintenance history.

We (daughter and I) can do our own work if we need to - I've rebuilt several cars. But I would prefer to have a vehicle that doesn't require extensive maintenance.

She drove my BMW 335d for years without ever putting gas in it, so I'm not worried about that. And she can drive a stick no problem, it's more a question of availability. There are very few TDis on the market these days.

How unreliable is the auto? Is that a showstopper?
 
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Tdijarhead

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Nov 10, 2013
Location
Lawrenceville PA
TDI
2003 TDI Jetta Daughters Car, 2001 TDI Beetle, Daughters car, 2005 Golf TDI Mine, all 5 spds
Not necessarily, better than the previous generation, but I wouldn’t own one, but to some extent that’s just me.
 

teitel39

Active member
Joined
Jan 22, 2019
Location
columbus, Ohio
TDI
2004 golf GL 4dr, 5spd, BEW
Im really in agreement with Tdjar here the autos seem troublesome and yea some kid is gonna buy gas for it. I have a 04 stick and love drivin' it. My BEW engine had 226,000 on it when I bought it. It did need a cam & lifters.
 

MonsterTDI09

TDIClub Enthusiast, Veteran Member
Joined
Jul 3, 2009
Location
NoVa/NJ
TDI
2010 Jetta DSG/ up keep on 2009 Jetta DSG 2006 Jetta Pag 2 in North SEA Green
Re previous owner - the current owner (seller) is a dealer who bought the car at auction last year so there is no maintenance history.

We (daughter and I) can do our own work if we need to - I've rebuilt several cars. But I would prefer to have a vehicle that doesn't require extensive maintenance.

She drove my BMW 335d for years without ever putting gas in it, so I'm not worried about that. And she can drive a stick no problem, it's more a question of availability. There are very few TDis on the market these days.

How unreliable is the auto? Is that a showstopper?
Check the cam for wear. I have 180K on my 06,no problems with auto.
 

IndigoBlueWagon

TDIClub Enthusiast, Principal IDParts, Vendor , w/
Joined
Aug 16, 2004
Location
South of Boston
TDI
'97 Passat, '99.5 Golf, '02 Jetta Wagon, '15 GSW
Auto transmission on that car is pretty good. Much better than the '03 and earlier MKIVs. But that car does have potential issues: Cam wear as already mentioned, turbo actuators often fail at around the mileage that car has and you can't buy the actuator, you'll have to replace the turbo. Suspension and front end bushings may be tired unless they've been replaced, and if it has no maintenance history you should complete a timing belt service right away.

TDIs, and most VWs, for that matter, require more maintenance than comparable Japanese cars. If you don't mind investing some money into it to get it into top shape you will probably get some good service out of it. Both of my sons got TDIs as their first cars. One was excellent, the other was a money pit, but it had been poorly cared for by the previous owner. Without any history the car is a bit of a gamble.
 

Dh4276

Veteran Member
Joined
Jul 22, 2019
Location
South Carolina
TDI
2006 Golf GLS TDI, BEW
I have an 06 Golf manual, can’t speak on the auto. One thing I would recommend if you get the car is to check the injector pins/plungers. I have 247k on mine, cam wear is good, but had an injector damaged when the plunger failed on 1. Inspected a friends beetle with BEW and he had 2 about to fail.

I did find out today that the actuator for the turbo is available for around $250. I plan on buying another 06 TDI Golf within the next year, I love this car. 130k would be a dream to find for me.


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maddog2020

Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2020
Location
CA
TDI
2014 JSW TDi
I wish we could find a manual Golf. She's really not into the Jetta - doesn't like sedans, and I don't blame her. That's why she doesn't like the Civic, Corolla, etc. I would certainly prefer a manual - for lots of reasons as stated above, but there are VERY few TDIs in general to be found, and very few of the ones that are around are manual.

Ian
 
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eddieleephd

Top Post Dawg
Joined
May 27, 2012
Location
Asheville, NC
TDI
2002 jetta Wagon
In your situation I would find a local TDI guru and take the car to him for review.

Look up "kill da auto wabbit" to see what swapping a manual in would take.

What I'm hearing from you really says you want to find a little Honda or Toyota she can drive into the ground without caring. It's fuel cost, or maintenance cost in the end it seems.

TDI's are very specific and either you need a mechanic that's good with them; meaning they mostly, or only, work on them. Or you want to learn a lot about them.

Right off you're looking at $900 to $1200 for a timing belt job. If your good with that then you should think more about it and do as I said earlier. Otherwise I recommend going to the nearest lease agent at a dealership and getting an off lease car that's been maintained under contract.

The ad does say fresh timing belt, you want proof! Receipts for parts, or work to absolve the above statement...

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Dh4276

Veteran Member
Joined
Jul 22, 2019
Location
South Carolina
TDI
2006 Golf GLS TDI, BEW
I wish we could find a manual Golf. She's really not into the Jetta - doesn't like sedans, and I don't blame her. That's why she doesn't like the Civic, Corolla, etc. I would certainly prefer a manual - for lots of reasons as stated above, but there are VERY few TDIs in general to be found, and very few of the ones that are around are manual.

Ian


I happened to look last night and found a couple manual golf TDI’s in California and Washington. They piped up on multiple different sites. I was sticking to 04-06 model years for the BEW engine. If you are not concerned with which TDI engine you get, then I’m sure you could find others as well.


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Dh4276

Veteran Member
Joined
Jul 22, 2019
Location
South Carolina
TDI
2006 Golf GLS TDI, BEW
In your situation I would find a local TDI guru and take the car to him for review.

Look up "kill da auto wabbit" to see what swapping a manual in would take.

What I'm hearing from you really says you want to find a little Honda or Toyota she can drive into the ground without caring. It's fuel cost, or maintenance cost in the end it seems.

TDI's are very specific and either you need a mechanic that's good with them; meaning they mostly, or only, work on them. Or you want to learn a lot about them.

Right off you're looking at $900 to $1200 for a timing belt job. If your good with that then you should think more about it and do as I said earlier. Otherwise I recommend going to the nearest lease agent at a dealership and getting an off lease car that's been maintained under contract.

The ad does say fresh timing belt, you want proof! Receipts for parts, or work to absolve the above statement...

Sent from my moto g(7) power using Tapatalk


Totally agree about timing belt and TDI mechanic. I do all my own work for all our cars(4 VW’s). When I got the TDI it was my first diesel I personally owned and have learned a lot in a short time, lots of thanks to the forums here in that as well, and now work on a friends TDI that my dad used to do all the work on.

These engines are nowhere near the same as the gas engines and having resources and patience when working on them is a great help.


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JB05

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Oct 20, 2005
Location
Il.USA
TDI
Golf,2005,anthracite blue
My '05 Golf, with the same engine and transmission as the '06, has developed worn out wiring over the years; and this can be very difficult to diagnose without the proper VCDS scanning capability. Glow plug harness, crankshaft position sensor cable, and the rear harness wiring having to be replaced. I did change the ATF one time, and my 09A tranny is running good. Turbo actuator went out two years ago, but I managed to fit a Garrett smart actuator on it with a VNT delete software change.
 

bmwM5power

Veteran Member
Joined
May 3, 2007
Location
Rochester NY
TDI
15 GSW TDI S 6MT / 02 JETTA TDI GLS 5MT 15 GOLF TDI 6MT
In your situation I would find a local TDI guru and take the car to him for review.

Look up "kill da auto wabbit" to see what swapping a manual in would take.

What I'm hearing from you really says you want to find a little Honda or Toyota she can drive into the ground without caring. It's fuel cost, or maintenance cost in the end it seems.

TDI's are very specific and either you need a mechanic that's good with them; meaning they mostly, or only, work on them. Or you want to learn a lot about them.

Right off you're looking at $900 to $1200 for a timing belt job. If your good with that then you should think more about it and do as I said earlier. Otherwise I recommend going to the nearest lease agent at a dealership and getting an off lease car that's been maintained under contract.

The ad does say fresh timing belt, you want proof! Receipts for parts, or work to absolve the above statement...

Sent from my moto g(7) power using Tapatalk
the timing belt on BEW is actually easier to do than on ALH, if the OP is good at rebuilding cars like he stated the TB is gonna cost him a $200 in average. The only bad thing that can happen to Jatco 09A transmission is the solenoids would need replaced, about $150 and 3-4 hrs of time, its not the end of the world really. If the car is in good shape, strats good, doesnt smoke or leak fluids and you can get it for a decent price I dont see anyhting bad about byuing it. 06 is the last year of mk4 tdis
 

oilhammer

Certified Volkswagen Nut & Vendor
Joined
Dec 11, 2001
Location
outside St Louis, MO
TDI
There are just too many to list....
Until someone has a reliable crystal ball, we cannot really tell you about any specific car with any great detail. We can only speak of trends and possibilities. I work on these cars every day, and I see some that are pristine well maintained examples with over 300k well cared for miles on them that I would not hesitate to drive anywhere. Then I see the same car maybe a couple years newer with a third the distance on their clock that are beat, neglected, ravaged, abused, tooefed turd buckets that I would not trust to drive across the street (these usually end up in my driveway :p ).

I would possibly try and find someone local that perhaps is more familiar with them if you are not, and pay him or her to give it a look over and a general assessment of its current condition. Little clues go a long way to give a bit of a feeling on how well the car was cared for. Tires alone can do this. Cheap off brand mismatched wrong load tires that never got rotated? Well if they cheaped out on that, chances are other things got cheaped out on too. Car ever been waxed? Dirty door jams and around the hatch inner area? Wrong battery and missing hold down? Probably because they waited until the slow crank turned into a no crank, and had to due a crisis management Autozone lot battery replacement in the dark in the cold. Again, a clue the car has perhaps not been well cared for.
 

IndigoBlueWagon

TDIClub Enthusiast, Principal IDParts, Vendor , w/
Joined
Aug 16, 2004
Location
South of Boston
TDI
'97 Passat, '99.5 Golf, '02 Jetta Wagon, '15 GSW
My son has owned two Golfs. First was a 120K mile car with a failed timing belt. Put a new head and belt system on it, and that car continued to give all kinds of trouble. Transmission issues, failed axles, strut mounts installed upside down...it just went on and on.

Second was a 265K car with one owner and was cared for since new by one of the best TDI gurus. Also needed a timing belt, although it han't failed. Did some other stuff (rear calipers, turbo actuator), and all it's needed is routine maintenance and wear item replacements in 5 years and 130K miles. Almost at 400K now. Dead reliable.

Silly example: Often on older VWs the brake rotor screws are rusted and the heads break off when you try to remove them. On the second Golf they came right out. Why? Anti seize on them. Same with the battery hold down bolt.

How much the owner cared for the car matters.
 

300D

Veteran Member
Joined
Jun 8, 2018
Location
Coast of Maine
TDI
2003 Jetta Wagon TDI, 5-speed, 270K
...How much the owner cared for the car matters.
Although this is important in any car, it's especially important in these cars. When I bought mine, it was from a 'mechanic' who had other diesels, so I thought that was a positive. I have been wrenching on cars my whole life, but didn't know any better about vw's or diesels. Noticed there was green fluid as coolant and he said 'oh yeah, it doesn't matter what color the coolant is, it's all good'. Should have turned right the f around right then and there...

But with that said, and the crazy load of work I have done to the car, I love it. My 03 wagon 5MT is my favorite car of all time.
 

maddog2020

Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2020
Location
CA
TDI
2014 JSW TDi
I happened to look last night and found a couple manual golf TDI’s in California and Washington. They piped up on multiple different sites. I was sticking to 04-06 model years for the BEW engine. If you are not concerned with which TDI engine you get, then I’m sure you could find others as well.

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You must be much better at searching that I am, I still can't find any. Where are you looking?

Thanks in advance,

Ian
 

STDOUBT

Veteran Member
Joined
Jul 30, 2007
Location
Portland, effing Oregon
TDI
dos jettas
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maddog2020

Member
Joined
Jan 6, 2020
Location
CA
TDI
2014 JSW TDi

oilhammer

Certified Volkswagen Nut & Vendor
Joined
Dec 11, 2001
Location
outside St Louis, MO
TDI
There are just too many to list....
Not high mileage for a ~14 year old car that generally get purchased to due the need for fuel efficiency because the owners drive a lot.

My current TDIs mileages:

215k

216k

280k

330k

571k

Odometers in Volkswagens are for two things: keeping track of PM, and bragging rights. They are in no way indicative of the condition of the car.

(I also have a gasser dub approaching 240k ;) )
 

300D

Veteran Member
Joined
Jun 8, 2018
Location
Coast of Maine
TDI
2003 Jetta Wagon TDI, 5-speed, 270K
Thanks, all pretty high mileage.


That Portland one looks like it has been well cared for and under 200K. Can’t really find better than that. 18 years later you aren’t going to find many under 200.
 

Dh4276

Veteran Member
Joined
Jul 22, 2019
Location
South Carolina
TDI
2006 Golf GLS TDI, BEW
That Portland one looks like it has been well cared for and under 200K. Can’t really find better than that. 18 years later you aren’t going to find many under 200.


The Portland one does look nice, carmax, autotradder, car gurus all showed several.


Check out a 2005 Volkswagen Golf GLS 1.9 TDi - $5,795 - $5,795 on CarGurus at https://www.cargurus.com/Cars/share...262703679 Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

Dh4276

Veteran Member
Joined
Jul 22, 2019
Location
South Carolina
TDI
2006 Golf GLS TDI, BEW
I didn’t catch the bald tire. I did a quick search to what was around the country.

I never seem to find them close to me. When I bought mine, the next closest one I could find was in West Virginia.

I’m in SC


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IndigoBlueWagon

TDIClub Enthusiast, Principal IDParts, Vendor , w/
Joined
Aug 16, 2004
Location
South of Boston
TDI
'97 Passat, '99.5 Golf, '02 Jetta Wagon, '15 GSW
My low mileage TDI has 261K on it, although I'm starting to think of my 289K B4 Passat as pretty low mileage, too. My daily? 405K. And when I take a road trip that's the one I drive.
 
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