New to me 2003 Jetta Wagon TDi manual

Vwkaferman

Active member
Joined
Jun 26, 2021
Location
Mesa, AZ
TDI
2003 Jetta Wagon
Yay! I just about bought this car sight unseen. Every time a Wagon TDi manual came up, it was usually gone the same day. I just happened to be working in LA when this one popped up. I got on the phone with him, sent him $250 via Paypal WHILE on the phone with him. Upon arrival my heart sank a little. Car was SO dirty, inside and out. Lots of little gremlins which I've started to make a list below. BUT, I've gone over the seats a few times, and I think a few more passes in the interior, she's gonna come around.

Owner says it has a Malone Stage IV tune. Upgraded injectors and turbo. I have no paperwork, the car does roll coal (not that I'm trying to do that) and moves out pretty well. I'm just baffled why he would keep the stock exhaust on this car. I mean, the turbo must feel pretty choked up. Definitely want to get a Cat back for it, lol I wonder if I should just go out and cut the muffler off and get a downturn pipe from O'Reilly. Can't sound any worse/or better than my turbo back (straight pipe ) '93 Cummins. Heh.

OK, a couple of pics after the car wash today, cleaned inside and outside windows, degreased engine bay, looks a bunch better. Below pics is my to do list including what's currently on order (ordered today from RockAuto and ECS Tuning)






To do list:

1. Check all 5 tires Air pressure (why I haven't done this yet is beyond me)
2. Repair foggy headlights, buy new down the road
3. Fix saggy headliner
4. Timing Belt/ Coolant Flush/ Water pump, Fuel Filter, Oil and Oil filter (basically whatever service is called out when doing Timing belt)
5. Heater Core likely needs to be swapped out. Doesn't appear to be leaking, but when turned on heater, not a whole lot of heat came out
6. HVAC blend door fix (foam is likely all gone, apply aluminum tape over blend doors, likely removing entire HVAC in order to do this, YAY)
7. Stereo. Have gotten spoiled with rental cars for work having Car Play. Might as well get one capable of back up camera
8. Deep Clean <--in progress
9. Remove Sunroof shield (on top of car, hate the way it looks)
10. New Antenna <--Ordered from RockAuto
11. Driver side brake light <-- Have bulb, waited to get home, looks like I need to remove that foam piece behind the panel to get the bulb board/holder out
12. Brake Flush. A bit spongy
13. Tranny inspection hole cover. <-- I think I found it in the car. Bright yellow, or maybe NYG (as us neon guys say, Nitro Yellow Green)?
14. FMIC (front mount intercooler). If it has a Stage IV tune, I think an intercooler upgrade is in order. I wonder if I can email Malone Tuning and ask if they track VIN's?
15. Air Filter change <--Ordered from ECS Tuning
16. EGR delete?
17. Cat back exhaust
18. Raise rear. It's on Coil-overs, shouldn't be too difficult.
19. New/Used Keyfob as main key, use old one as spare
20. Button for center armrest/console <-- Ordered from Rock Auto
21. Driver door does not activate interior lights. Other doors do. Research shows that the "switch" is integrated into the door latch. "Yay".
22. Euro Headlight switch. Hopefully didn't waste my money on this one. HATED my DRL's on my 96' GTI VR6 I had in Germany. People were ALWAYS flashing me telling me "idiot, it's daytime, your lights are on". Even kids on a schoolbus once were all motioning "your lights are on". The fix back in the day was simply swapping out to the Euro headlight switch so I ordered one from ECS tuning. We'll see.
23. TINT WINDOWS! Holy cow, AZ, you have to have tinted windows.
24. Order windshield shade from Covercraft.
25. Cabin Air filter <-- Ordered from RockAuto
26. Steering column "tilt" handle. This one just flops around. <-- Ordered from ECS Tuning
27. Sunroof Ceiling Control cover. Old one is just coming apart (fabric). I "think" the one I ordered has fabric so should look new. <-- Ordered from ECS Tuning
28. Almost forgot, get it registered here in AZ LOL. Hopefully she passes emissions! :)


LOL if you've made it down this far, thanks for reading. I've got my work cut out for me, so far loving this car.

James
 

Zak99b5

Veteran Member
Joined
Apr 30, 2021
Location
Albany NY
TDI
2003 Jetta TDI
Euro switch won’t fix the DRL problem. You’ll have to bend down the TFL pin on the switch, be it US or Euro spec.
 

ssaric1.9TDI

Veteran Member
Joined
Feb 29, 2016
Location
Atlanta
TDI
2013 VW Passat TDI, 2003 VW Jetta Wagon TDI
Beautiful car, I love the color. Whats the mileage on it?
 

Vwkaferman

Active member
Joined
Jun 26, 2021
Location
Mesa, AZ
TDI
2003 Jetta Wagon
Funny, you would have thought I'd put that detail in my post.

134,XXX miles. She's not perfect, a good 10 footer and I'm ok with that. Body is straight, so far no rust (CA car, so should be none). :)

James
 

Rrusse11

Veteran Member
Joined
Jan 23, 2014
Location
PA Deutsch Country
TDI
2002 Golf, 5spd; 05 Jeep CRD
I've been running a Euro switch for 5yrs now, switch off, DRLs are on, switch to "city" or "parking" lights, headlights are off. Ie, I've ALWAYS got some lights on the car. Works for me, the blue LEDs in the front are particularly eye catching. Your Mileage Will Vary

Check out IDparts.com, trusted supplier, regular contributor on these forums.
 

Luckydog58

Active member
Joined
Jun 12, 2021
Location
South Dakota
TDI
2005 VW Golf BEW
Congrats on the new beauty. I'm in the same boat- my window tint appointment is the 25th lol. I have to have the old gross stuff removed and new tint put on. I have a question how are you going to remove the sunroof cover - are you taking the whole headliner down? I need to get mine out since the guy before ripped the material off it but left the foam particles on it so if I try to close it I get a shower of gross stuffing. If you know a better way can you share the secret?
 

Vwkaferman

Active member
Joined
Jun 26, 2021
Location
Mesa, AZ
TDI
2003 Jetta Wagon
Congrats on the new beauty. I'm in the same boat- my window tint appointment is the 25th lol. I have to have the old gross stuff removed and new tint put on. I have a question how are you going to remove the sunroof cover - are you taking the whole headliner down? I need to get mine out since the guy before ripped the material off it but left the foam particles on it so if I try to close it I get a shower of gross stuffing. If you know a better way can you share the secret?
Unfortunately the whole headliner needs to come out to do it properly. Oh wait, you said just the cover. I’m talking anout the small square piece that’s right behind the sunroof controls. It looks like it’s just a plastic cloth covered access panel with a tool attached to it to open/close the sunroof in case of motor failure (I’m assuming).

As far as entire headliner, it’s double the fun on sunroof cars. You can buckle the headliner as you get it out, at least on my ‘99 neon R/T it was that way. Removed that headliner to do a proper repair of the sunroof guides/cables.

James
 

Luckydog58

Active member
Joined
Jun 12, 2021
Location
South Dakota
TDI
2005 VW Golf BEW
Unfortunately the whole headliner needs to come out to do it properly. Oh wait, you said just the cover. I’m talking anout the small square piece that’s right behind the sunroof controls. It looks like it’s just a plastic cloth covered access panel with a tool attached to it to open/close the sunroof in case of motor failure (I’m assuming).

As far as entire headliner, it’s double the fun on sunroof cars. You can buckle the headliner as you get it out, at least on my ‘99 neon R/T it was that way. Removed that headliner to do a proper repair of the sunroof guides/cables.

James
Oh yours is that small square piece - mine rattles a little. Guess I'm going to have to do the headliner :( I hate to touch it since it is actually in good shape, but I need to change out my antenna and get that sunroof cover out of there and have it recovered. Keep me posted on your cleaning and repairs :)
 

rocketeer928

Veteran Member
Joined
Jan 24, 2008
Location
A New Englander currently in northeastern Illinois
TDI
2003 Jetta GLS TDI 5-speed
Nice looking wagon.

When I read your "to do" list and saw heater core, I paused. I think that you would have to disassemble the whole dash to get to the heater core. I think if the heater core went on my 2003 TDI, it will have seen its last days for me.

Beware putting in an aftermarket stereo causing parasitic battery drain. I've recently experienced that issue.
 

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
Nice looking wagon.

When I read your "to do" list and saw heater core, I paused. I think that you would have to disassemble the whole dash to get to the heater core. I think if the heater core went on my 2003 TDI, it will have seen its last days for me.

Beware putting in an aftermarket stereo causing parasitic battery drain. I've recently experienced that issue.
Yeah, heater core is kind of a big deal:

I've been told that most issues with power drain on aftermarket stereos has to do with pulling power from the wrong wire in that part of the dash. I forget the specifics, but might be worth checking.
 

Vwkaferman

Active member
Joined
Jun 26, 2021
Location
Mesa, AZ
TDI
2003 Jetta Wagon
Hopefully it’s just the blend doors and I don’t have to dig into the heater core. I watched a timelapse vid on youtube, yeah it looks like a couple of weekends. Yuck!

James
 

Vwkaferman

Active member
Joined
Jun 26, 2021
Location
Mesa, AZ
TDI
2003 Jetta Wagon
Figured I'd update my to do list as I slowly get things done.


To do list:

1. Check all 5 tires Air pressure (why I haven't done this yet is beyond me) Done :)
2. Repair foggy headlights, buy new down the road -> Glass replacements on the way!
3. Fix saggy headliner
4. Timing Belt/ Coolant Flush/ Water pump, Fuel Filter, Oil and Oil filter (basically whatever service is called out when doing Timing belt)
5. Heater Core likely needs to be swapped out. Doesn't appear to be leaking, but when turned on heater, not a whole lot of heat came out
6. HVAC blend door fix (foam is likely all gone, apply aluminum tape over blend doors, likely removing entire HVAC in order to do this, YAY)
7. Stereo. Have gotten spoiled with rental cars for work having Car Play. Might as well get one capable of back up camera
8. Deep Clean <--in progress
9. Remove Sunroof shield (on top of car, hate the way it looks) Done
10. New Antenna Done
11. Driver side brake light Done
12. Brake Flush. A bit spongy
13. Tranny inspection hole cover. <-- I think I found it in the car. Bright yellow, or maybe NYG (as us neon guys say, Nitro Yellow Green)?
14. FMIC (front mount intercooler). If it has a Stage IV tune, I think an intercooler upgrade is in order. I wonder if I can email Malone Tuning and ask if they track VIN's?
15. Air Filter change Done
16. EGR delete?
17. Cat back exhaust
18. Raise rear. It's on Coil-overs, shouldn't be too difficult.
19. New/Used Keyfob as main key, use old one as spare
20. Button for center armrest/console Done
21. Driver door does not activate interior lights. Other doors do. Research shows that the "switch" is integrated into the door latch. "Yay".
22. Euro Headlight switch. Hopefully didn't waste my money on this one. HATED my DRL's on my 96' GTI VR6 I had in Germany. People were ALWAYS flashing me telling me "idiot, it's daytime, your lights are on". Even kids on a schoolbus once were all motioning "your lights are on". The fix back in the day was simply swapping out to the Euro headlight switch so I ordered one from ECS tuning. We'll see.
23. TINT WINDOWS! Holy cow, AZ, you have to have tinted windows.
24. Order windshield shade from Covercraft.
25. Cabin Air filter Done
26. Steering column "tilt" handle. This one just flops around. <-- Awaiting install, received
27. Sunroof Ceiling Control cover. Old one is just coming apart (fabric). I "think" the one I ordered has fabric so should look new. Done
28. Almost forgot, get it registered here in AZ LOL. Hopefully she passes emissions! :) ***AND Done, woot, title in my name, tags on the way. Verified with Malone, it is indeed a Stage IV tune so hopefully she breaths a little better after exhaust/intercooler upgrades (I know intercooler doesn't make it breath better but you understand why I'd like to make it more efficient).


So not a TON done but hey, making progress. Hotter than Hades here in AZ and we've actually (so far) had a decent Monsoon which means not only is it HOT, it's HUMID too. Ugh, don't miss that (originally from the South).

James
 

Luckydog58

Active member
Joined
Jun 12, 2021
Location
South Dakota
TDI
2005 VW Golf BEW
Figured I'd update my to do list as I slowly get things done.


To do list:

1. Check all 5 tires Air pressure (why I haven't done this yet is beyond me) Done :)
2. Repair foggy headlights, buy new down the road -> Glass replacements on the way!
3. Fix saggy headliner
4. Timing Belt/ Coolant Flush/ Water pump, Fuel Filter, Oil and Oil filter (basically whatever service is called out when doing Timing belt)
5. Heater Core likely needs to be swapped out. Doesn't appear to be leaking, but when turned on heater, not a whole lot of heat came out
6. HVAC blend door fix (foam is likely all gone, apply aluminum tape over blend doors, likely removing entire HVAC in order to do this, YAY)
7. Stereo. Have gotten spoiled with rental cars for work having Car Play. Might as well get one capable of back up camera
8. Deep Clean <--in progress
9. Remove Sunroof shield (on top of car, hate the way it looks) Done
10. New Antenna Done
11. Driver side brake light Done
12. Brake Flush. A bit spongy
13. Tranny inspection hole cover. <-- I think I found it in the car. Bright yellow, or maybe NYG (as us neon guys say, Nitro Yellow Green)?
14. FMIC (front mount intercooler). If it has a Stage IV tune, I think an intercooler upgrade is in order. I wonder if I can email Malone Tuning and ask if they track VIN's?
15. Air Filter change Done
16. EGR delete?
17. Cat back exhaust
18. Raise rear. It's on Coil-overs, shouldn't be too difficult.
19. New/Used Keyfob as main key, use old one as spare
20. Button for center armrest/console Done
21. Driver door does not activate interior lights. Other doors do. Research shows that the "switch" is integrated into the door latch. "Yay".
22. Euro Headlight switch. Hopefully didn't waste my money on this one. HATED my DRL's on my 96' GTI VR6 I had in Germany. People were ALWAYS flashing me telling me "idiot, it's daytime, your lights are on". Even kids on a schoolbus once were all motioning "your lights are on". The fix back in the day was simply swapping out to the Euro headlight switch so I ordered one from ECS tuning. We'll see.
23. TINT WINDOWS! Holy cow, AZ, you have to have tinted windows.
24. Order windshield shade from Covercraft.
25. Cabin Air filter Done
26. Steering column "tilt" handle. This one just flops around. <-- Awaiting install, received
27. Sunroof Ceiling Control cover. Old one is just coming apart (fabric). I "think" the one I ordered has fabric so should look new. Done
28. Almost forgot, get it registered here in AZ LOL. Hopefully she passes emissions! :) ***AND Done, woot, title in my name, tags on the way. Verified with Malone, it is indeed a Stage IV tune so hopefully she breaths a little better after exhaust/intercooler upgrades (I know intercooler doesn't make it breath better but you understand why I'd like to make it more efficient).


So not a TON done but hey, making progress. Hotter than Hades here in AZ and we've actually (so far) had a decent Monsoon which means not only is it HOT, it's HUMID too. Ugh, don't miss that (originally from the South).

James
So James...
#27 where did you order this from? and did it look good? #9 & 10 did you drop your headliner to do these? I need to do both of those but hate the idea of touching my headliner since it still looks good - except for the fact that previous owner pulled all the fabric and "stuffing" off the sunroof cover, so it's just ugly piece of metal that drop "stuffing" on me every time I touch it. I just did #23 today :) Thanks for the list I'm kinda in the same spot as you.
 

Vwkaferman

Active member
Joined
Jun 26, 2021
Location
Mesa, AZ
TDI
2003 Jetta Wagon
So James...
#27 where did you order this from? and did it look good? #9 & 10 did you drop your headliner to do these? I need to do both of those but hate the idea of touching my headliner since it still looks good - except for the fact that previous owner pulled all the fabric and "stuffing" off the sunroof cover, so it's just ugly piece of metal that drop "stuffing" on me every time I touch it. I just did #23 today :) Thanks for the list I'm kinda in the same spot as you.
#27, ordered this from ECStuning (a bit pricey but hey):https://www.ecstuning.com/b-genuine...iling-control-cover-pearl-grey/1j0877829a2xp/

Happy with it, only caveat is now I realize the rest of the surrounding headliner is dirty, which will be remedied by a new headliner.

#9 and #10 I just replaced the screw on roof antenna and the sunroof deflector just deleted it (ugly aftermarket purple).

Haven’t dropped the headliner yet, to do list….eventually.

James
 
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