My wife lost last key for her B4

jdulle

Veteran Member
Joined
Feb 4, 2017
Location
Ithaca, NY
TDI
96 B4, 97 B4
My wife lost the last key for her 96 b4 a few days ago. The car is unlocked. Does anyone know any easy tricks for getting it running? Would it be crazy to wire in a switch for the ignition and a push button for the starter? I am not really tempted to fix it the right way myself, because it will probably take a long time. There is also this rather long list of other things that the car needs, including more work on the brake cables, front suspension work, rear shock work, leaks in the interior and trunk, etc etc. So I am tempted to pull it into the woods and use as a parts car. Engine and transmission are fine, all lights work, and has been on the road recently, but it eats front tires. Do you think I should fix it? It would be sad to see another one go...
 

dieseltruck

Active member
Joined
May 14, 2017
Location
Tulsa, OK
TDI
96,97 Passat sedans
You can get a new lock cylinder including keys for less than 10 bucks. Replace it yourself in a couple hours. If the car isn’t too rusty and you can do the work yourself, then yes it’s worth fixing. YouTube videos can help with all of the issues you listed.
 

dieseltruck

Active member
Joined
May 14, 2017
Location
Tulsa, OK
TDI
96,97 Passat sedans
While considering further, it occurred to me that it may not be in your best interest to fix it if your wife “lost” the keys on purpose.
 

jdulle

Veteran Member
Joined
Feb 4, 2017
Location
Ithaca, NY
TDI
96 B4, 97 B4
I don't think she lost the keys on purpose. She really likes the car, but doesn't even want to check the oil, and she does things like leaving the lights on, parking it in neutral without the parking brake. It might be better if she was driving something that was automatic and turned the lights off for her.
 

jdulle

Veteran Member
Joined
Feb 4, 2017
Location
Ithaca, NY
TDI
96 B4, 97 B4
I spent a few minutes looking at the video of how to change the lock cylinder, and when I got to the split bearing puller section to get to the lock cylinder, I was thinking I didn't want to get into it. If someone who knows what they are doing takes 2 hours, it might take me 2 days.
 

Steve Addy

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Aug 7, 2002
Location
Iowa
TDI
97 Mk3
If I was closer I would....but that's a pretty big house call for me being in Des Moines.

Steve
 

jdulle

Veteran Member
Joined
Feb 4, 2017
Location
Ithaca, NY
TDI
96 B4, 97 B4
Nice! I knew there was a better way! Also, I found the key. She dropped it in the grass on the way to the chicken house, and I had been retracing her steps...took me about 20 minutes to find it. We will make a couple copies now. She was so happy it was back in service that she helped me clean the sunroof drains in an attempt to fix a leak on the drivers front floor. Also it looks like she is willing to put time/money in to get the car back into shape.
 

TDeanI

Veteran Member
Joined
Oct 14, 2007
Location
Bremerton WA
TDI
'97 Passat TDI Wagon w/ 286K mi.
Keep a copy on the car hidden. Behind the tow hook cover is a good place. Make sure the key is covered in plastic so road salt doesn't dissolve it.
 

Steve Addy

Top Post Dawg
Joined
Aug 7, 2002
Location
Iowa
TDI
97 Mk3
Nice! I knew there was a better way! Also, I found the key. She dropped it in the grass on the way to the chicken house, and I had been retracing her steps...took me about 20 minutes to find it. We will make a couple copies now. She was so happy it was back in service that she helped me clean the sunroof drains in an attempt to fix a leak on the drivers front floor. Also it looks like she is willing to put time/money in to get the car back into shape.
That's always nice to hear, I know most people like to trade away their problems but honestly with these cars and the longevity it's better to invest in what you have vs what else you might get....that is a whole lot worse, and there's a bunch of stuff out there that isn't worth much these days.

Steve
 

jdulle

Veteran Member
Joined
Feb 4, 2017
Location
Ithaca, NY
TDI
96 B4, 97 B4
so far the locksmith we tried couldn't get the key to match well enough to turn the ignition. I looked at it and there are a few spots I might try filing down to see if I can get it to work, but I haven't had time to do that yet. I may have to try another locksmith.
 
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