Oil change uncovers possible destruction

79TA7.6

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2003 Jetta GLS 5 Speed
I am changing the oil in my 2003 Jetta. She has 272k miles. I try to change it every 10k but I am off by about 2k this time around. Anyway, when I pulled the plug I found some metal attached to it. It is a magnetic style plug, but I never imagined I would capture anything like this. Can someone please help me identify what these came from? It might be hard to tell but they are curved and almost seem to have a lip on them. Unfortunately when I took everything back outside after taking pictures the wind blew the towel I had them in and now they are gone.


 

79TA7.6

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I do not think they are bits of a seal, but I could be wrong.

If these are bits of a seal then why would it be disintegrating? I have never had this engine apart for any reason other than to do timing belt changes, thermostat changes, and starter change. I have never been inside this engine.
 

79TA7.6

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Live: Wilbur/Creston; Work: Moses Lake Washington
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Talking this over with my step dad he asked about the oil pump or the pump chain. He also asked about the lifters or valve springs. I did pull the valve cover off and all looks good as far as I can see, though there is not much to see under there.

Anyone else have other suggestions or things to look at?
 

eddieleephd

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2002 jetta Wagon
How thick are they? My first thought honestly was bearings, but, I doubt it.
You might consider pulling the oil pan and inspecting what you can find there. See if there's anything else in there.

The shape and their being metal is why I said it looks like the remainder of a seal. If you're not the original owner, the previous owner may not have gotten all of the old one out somehow.
 

79TA7.6

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I have owned it since 85k. I doubt any work was done previous. The thickness on them starts off at nearly nothing and gets up to maybe 1/16". I still need to tear the filter apart to see if there is anything there too. It is just too hot right now not having a shop or garage to keep it in.
 

Brett San Diego

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San Diego
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02 Jetta wagon manual
When I pulled my head recently, I removed the turbo oil feed line (because I destroyed the other end at the turbo) and found similar debris stuck in the banjo bolt at the base of the oil filter housing. I think it was three pieces just like your pics. I thought mine were plastic, but I didn't check with a magnet. My only thought was I was glad the pieces didn't make it to the turbo bearing. They seemed to make a circle. I was thinking plastic bits from an oil filter...

315K on my 2002 wagon. I've owned it since 220K, and I have no history on it, so I didn't overthink it. Just put the head back on with a new oil feed line and kept driving. That doesn't mean that there wasn't some event in the past that I don't know about.

Brett
 
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79TA7.6

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So I went out and braved the heat again. Pulled the inter cooler off and poured about 1/4 cup out of it all over my pants and boot. I do not remember what is considered normal and I have not checked this in quite some time either.

Removed both charge and down pipes. There is no radial movement in the turbo shaft, but there is 1/8" to 3/16" axial movement. When I push the turbines towards the exhaust all spins freely. When I push them towards the charge side the turbines are very difficult to turn. Even if it was not part of the turbo seals I am not going to drive this until I can get a replacement turbo.

If I am able to move the shaft that far I would assume something with the seals would be wrong though. Am I correct in thinking that?
 

eddieleephd

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Asheville, NC
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2002 jetta Wagon
Yes, turbo thrust bearing sounds right.
Bearings were my first thought, that's a lot of miles on a turbo!
Better than rod bearings though.

Fixmyvw.com had some VNT17s on sale at VNT15 prices.
 

Genesis

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Feb 26, 2003
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Sevier County TN
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'03 Jetta Wagon
Removed both charge and down pipes. There is no radial movement in the turbo shaft, but there is 1/8" to 3/16" axial movement. When I push the turbines towards the exhaust all spins freely. When I push them towards the charge side the turbines are very difficult to turn. Even if it was not part of the turbo seals I am not going to drive this until I can get a replacement turbo.
Your turbo is done -- DO NOT START THE CAR.

That's probably the thrust bearing in your oil pan (and it's entirely plausible as the drain is quite large going back to the pan) as noted, and if you have that sort of axial play there's a risk of immediate no-notice destruction of the turbo.

You dodged a bullet in that you caught it before it blew up while driving.
 

whitedog

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Jul 12, 2004
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Bend, Oregon
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2004 Jetta that I fill by myself
Well done in not just finding the parts, but having the presence of mind to wonder about it. Now imagine the guy in the pit at the local fast lube place. Do you think he would have noticed it or said anything?
 

jimbote

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spiral arm, milky way (aka central NC)
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Tacoma 4x4 converted to TDI
not the thrust bearing pictured but most likely the exhaust side or compressor side piston ring ... thrust is on the cold side and typically just wears into fine particles ... as Genesis stated above, driving the car now is like winding on a jack in the box ;)
 
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79TA7.6

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What is everyone's opinion on buying a used turbo vs dropping nearly a grand on a new one? Also if new pros and cons of going garret vs Borg Warner vs Mahle?

I am going to try to remove the old turbo today. I already have all the piping removed except the oil lines. Any hints on how to save the old pressure line?
 

Mike_04GolfTDI

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boertje

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I've got garret, mahle, and borg in service in my alh fleet. Can't go wrong with any of them. Price determines it for me. Mahle and borg are about 698 where garret is typically 100 more than mahle or borg. Cascadegerman (Aaron) stocks them and would be fastest for your location. Personally I would not go used.
 

vanbcguy

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Use a new oil supply line. Many vendors won't warranty a turbo that was used with an old oil supply line.

Sent from my LG-H873 using Tapatalk
 

eddieleephd

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Asheville, NC
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2002 jetta Wagon
^^^what he said^^^
I went braided stainless steel.
you can get it off in one piece by disconnecting it from the oil pump housing and all the clips so you can take it out with the turbo.
Don't try to disconnect it from the turbo before it's off if you want it saved.
 

79TA7.6

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I pulled the oil supply line without any issues. I helped someone else change a turbo in their car and the line had to be twisted in half to get it undone. Also have the turbo sitting on the ground. It was easy to remove, but a pain to pull out from the top side. I did not want to remove the intake unless I absolutely had to. I am hoping I can drop in the new turbo from the top without issue.

Looking to get a garret vnt17 from fixmyvw. Andrew is out of the office but is still looking into some stuff for me. Cool guy. Turbo with the adaptor is $855 plus shipping. Cannot beat that price.

I am hoping to find time after I get the new turbo installed to tear this old one apart and see what she looks like. That might be a couple of weeks now though.
 

Rembrant

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It was easy to remove, but a pain to pull out from the top side. I did not want to remove the intake unless I absolutely had to.
Now is the opportune time to clean the intake if it hasn't been done already...and there's only a few bolts holding it on the head. If you got the turbo out of there, removing the intake only takes a minute.
 

Genesis

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Sevier County TN
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'03 Jetta Wagon
If you got the turbo off you're nuts not to pull and clean the intake. Seriously, it's stupidly-easy with the exhaust side out of the way.
 

Mike_04GolfTDI

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Mine: 2019 Golf R DSG, Wife's: 2015 Golf Comfortline TDI
You got the turbo out the top without removing the intake first? That must have been....interesting.

With the intake removed, it's actually really easy to remove the turbo out the top. The intake is only held on with six bolts.

I too have the VNT-17 kit from FixMyVW and it came with a new intake gasket.
 
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