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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 11:52 AM
Original message
VW Passat - A Ticking Time Bomb !
Edited on Sat Jan-21-06 11:57 AM by On Par
We have a leased 2003 VW Passat that ends Feb 2007. It has 30,600 miles and still well within the 4 year 50,000 warranty.

Thursday, January 12, my wife pulls into the driveway and said, as she was pulling in, a Stop Engine light came on stating low oil pressure. I checked it in the garage and the oil stick said full. I took it around the block, no light. I told her to take mine the next day, just in case, and Ill take the Passat to our independent certified BP mechanic that is about one mile from our home.

I thought it was a faulty sensor. So did BP when I told them the Stop Engine light again came on as I started down the hill to the BP station. They checked the dip-stick. The oil pump was working. Oil all the way up the stick. I was about to leave and call my VW dealership when the car began to spasm. The mechanic said, thats a bad cam lifter on the turbo. I parked it. Called VW from the service station. No problem, roadside assistance will tow it, and pay for it. The VW dealership is about 10 miles away.

Upon calling the VW Dealership, they said, youll need proof of oil changes. This was to be the death rattle. While on the phone with VW, I looked at my mechanic, knowing my wife, who drives the car, would never keep them, if they could get them. Shouldnt be a problem.

Background: Once home, I begin to check this on the Internet. No less than Time Magazine, Newsweek, and AutoWeek have featured stories on the VW 1.8 L turbo engine and the sludge problem that ensues because the turbo gets too hot, prematurely breaks down the oil and the oil filter sump capacity is too small to handle the sludge. Its sent back to the engine, and the turbo lifters get coked, starve the engine of oil, stop engine light comes on. VW has lost multi-millions fixing this problem. According to Time, there operating profit in the U.S. went from $944 million to $68 million. http://www.time.com/time/globalbusiness/article/0,9171,...

Oil receipts: My BP station doesnt keep records of oil changes, but they thought they could re-generate a non-numerical receipt and reasonable facsimile of the oil changes. Why? The Passat has a plate that covers the bottom of the engine. You cant take it to a Wal-Mart or Jiffy lube with a walk down bay because they cant get to the bolts holding the base plate.

The 17th, I take the re-generated receipts down to Three Rivers VW. They copied them and return the originals to me. An hour later the dealership called.

The first words I heard were, "Are you willing to testify in court that these are original documents?" Nice tone, huh? I told the service manager, who wasnt there when I dropped them off, that I told the other service manager they were "re-generated." "Oh, so they're fake, a fraud" I was told. No, they are facsimiles.

Well, he said, "they aren't numbered." Yes. Okay, I told them. They're re-generated! My BP doesnt keep those records.

The service manager replies, "Our field rep. called the BP dealer, and he won't stand behind them." Well, "let's see," I stated. Your rep called and used the same tone that you're using with me? Is it any wonder why a small business would not immediately think they'd need to get a lawyer and go to court, and therefore bail out? BTW, I later found out "no rep" had called the BP. It was the dealership service manager.

From there, the service manager tried to jump on me about the 5w-30 oil. "Oh, it may not be the right kind." I reminded them of the VW pamphlet they gave me a few days prior, stating it was. Plus, BP oil is synthetically reinforced. You see VW, realizing the problem sent out a memo http://www.autosafety.org/uploads/phpHPDpvG_VWOilSludge... to 426,000 owners telling them they extended the sludge warranty from 4 to 8 years, and maintain your present 6mo/5000 mile oil change. 5w-30 is what my VWs manual states. The new 05s take synthetic only, and theyve redesigned the engine, and changed to a much larger oil filter.

Operative part of the memo:
What Will Volkswagen Do?
After listening to you, our valued customers, Volkswagen is implementing an extended warranty for oil sludge related repairs for 1998 - 2004 model year Volkswagen Passat equipped with the 1.8L Turbo engines to 8 years from the vehicle's original in service date without a mileage limitation. This extended warranty is fully transferable to any subsequent owner. This extended warranty does not affect - and is in addition to - any other applicable warranty covering your vehicle. Volkswagen will cover necessary engine repairs if oil "sludge" causes a malfunction in your engine and you can provide documentation of oil changes according to the maintenance schedule for your vehicle.

My repair, of several thousand dollars, has been denied. In fact,they are all being denied. I called two dealerships that have a total of 7 Passats in their lots in one week, all denied. Multiply that by approx 9500 dealerships, and you see the massive problem)

With his tone, I explained, I have no choice but to stop payment on my lease. Oh, he said, "you better call VW."

I have read online horror story after horror story about the 1998-2004 VW Passat at http://www.myvwlemon.com . Even when people have proper oil receipts, theyve been denied! Newsweek: This tells about VW's oil sludge problems.
http://www.clublexus.com/forums/archive/index.php/t-132...

I called VW Corp and spoke to a representative in Michigan. She took all the information including my explanation of the regenerated oil receipts. I explained to her about the horror stories about people being denied warranty service even with receipts or reasonable facsimiles. I also told her of the accusatory tone of their representatives. After two days, she called and said "denied!."

1. From my perspective, this is not an oil problem, but a turbo problem. The oil prematurely breaks down due to the overly hot turbo, now redesigned. The oil filter cant handle the residue, and passes it back through the engine. The oil sludge is the result, not the primary cause. The oil change receipt is a red-herring. Theyve stated they will pay IF you have verification, knowing most, like me, wont have the originals with numbered receipts. It's Orwellian language of the highest order, and one the Bush Administration is not demanding a recall of 1998-2004 VW's with the 1.8 turbo engine even thought the Nat'l Highway and Saftey administration has received a mountain of complaints.

2. Even when people have done everything correctly with proper receipts, changed their oil within 5,000/6mo, the sludge still occurs! Thats fact by every account, including theirs. No one is going to issue an 8 yr warranty if they dont have a problem. Again, it's not the oil, it's the engine!

So here I sit with a car with 30,600 miles, owing $3600+ in payments, another several grand that could run into 5 figures, and I give it back to them in 12 months. And there's not a freaking thing I can do since VW, without gov't interference, has placed the onus on the customer in an obvious attempt to minimize their liability.

If you have a Passat...It's a time bomb. There will be no warning until the flashing stop engine light appears...Kaboom. It's too late.

If you have this 1.8 turbo engine. Sell it. If you don't have a VW, don't buy one!



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Hugin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 11:57 AM
Response to Original message
1. Have someone gin up some oil maintenance records...
:shrug:

Then bill VW for the time needed to "research your oil change history".

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meisje Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:41 PM
Response to Reply #1
24. so did you actually change your oil when it was required?
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 01:06 PM
Response to Reply #24
30. If Anyone Knows Me....
...they know I"m meticulous. Not only about cars, but my lawn, the house, you name it.

The short answer is "yes." The BP is just over the hill from me. We drop it off, leave it, come back later when it's done. Sometimes you pay out of pocket, other times a check.

Now tell me, have you keep all of your oil receipts?
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Liberal In Texas Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 09:41 PM
Response to Reply #30
84. I keep every frickin' receipt for all the cars we own. Even oil changes,
Especially oil changes. Everything (except car washing) goes in the expandable folder made for each car. You never know when something like this might come up.

Sorry for your problems. Sounds like class-action lawsuit time.



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buddysmellgood Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 02:53 AM
Response to Reply #84
91. I agree. That is, I don't keep receipts, but I believe the class action
suit is the best recourse.
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PeterPuck Donating Member (65 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 07:52 PM
Response to Reply #84
117. ditto on the receipts
Car repairs can become very costly (as seen here). Only makes sense to cover your butt with all documentation. If not for warranty it is also a good idea for resale.
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leftofthedial Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 11:59 AM
Response to Original message
2. welcome to the new ownership society
Edited on Sat Jan-21-06 12:00 PM by leftofthedial
it's not a leasership society

VW owns the car, and now they own a piece of you, buddy boy.

what? you think you are more important than a corporation? how much money did you give to the bush crime gang in the last elections cycle? not very damn much, that's how much!

quit whining. the economy is great. get another job to pay the debt you owe to VW, you freeloader.


seriously, I'm sorry for your situation. it is inexcusable how helpless we are against corporations. Thanks for the warning.
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Pavulon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:12 PM
Response to Reply #2
7. Not all car
companies are like this. Lexus and Ford have both gone out of their way to help me. Honda was marginal. Dealerships make the biggest difference.

My personal experience with VW is that they are shitty.
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:20 PM
Response to Reply #2
11. Thanks for the Smile...
and your concern.
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Nite Owl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:06 PM
Response to Original message
3. How did your wife
pay for the oil changes? Maybe there is a credit card record, a bill or even a check that the amount would correspond to?
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:19 PM
Response to Reply #3
10. Cash and Check.....
The problem is, we didn't keep our oil change receipts, and few others have. Even the freaking woman at VW corp said she didn't keep her receipts until she began working for VW 1 1/2 years ago!

They also check your oil receipts against your Inspection sticker date/mileage. VW will do everything possible, including the slighest of oil differences between your 5w-30 oil, and what they are "NOW" requiring.

You see, I was 3 oil changes in, before they sent out the sludge warranty extension which wasn't that at all, but a disclaimer that it's not our fault unless you have your receipts and can prove it's our fault!
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AgadorSparticus Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:08 PM
Response to Original message
4. you're not alone. I feel your pain. I know so many people who are
going up against corporations and are ready to pull their hair out. And it appears this trend is continuing for some time.
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Brundle_Fly Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:09 PM
Response to Original message
5. I went through this same crap....
Edited on Sat Jan-21-06 12:12 PM by Brundle_Fly
I sold my car, paid off my lease, which ended up costing me $6500 and I bought a full loaded Mazda 3 GT Sport

and I have never been happier. Mazda is a different world in terms of service compared the the BS I went through with VW. Although I have had no issues in the year I have had the car, I get full decent little inspections every time I take it in for a oil change. The Mechanic goes over anythings that have been reported by other customers, and asks if I have had any issues, and they give me a starbucks free coffee coupon for me to kill the time during the 30 mins free oil change.

I will never go back to VW for anything.



oh and its way more fun to drive.
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Pavulon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:10 PM
Response to Original message
6. credit card payments?
did you pay for the oil changes with check, or credit cards? that would be a record.

VW makes a shitty car. I would never own one.

You can stop paying the lease and drop the car off on the lot. Let them sue you.

if you have credit or cash to stall them they will not get very far. if you own a home and have a good credit history no one will care.

or you could pay and continue to lease it. bleed them with mechanical problems. hook the computer up to a 6 volt battery fry it. loop off the oil feed to the turbo, burn it up. they have no way of telling what is causing the failures. look at the wire elec. specs and figure out the overload voltage for the dash board, abs system, etc. fry them. they can't prove anything. they have to fix the computer and any emission control systems under warranty, federal law.

my vote would be to drop it off with a letter 'fuck you sue me', after parking it across the street from the dealership with a magnetic lemon and sign with the link to the lemon sights. leave road signs on the road to and from the place.

if you keep it, sabotage the bastard. break things that cost lots of labor and parts, a mechanic can tell you how to tear up a car and not leave a trace. don't stop until they have paid out 10x what you did. if they refuse sue them and make a pubic stink.

if they give you a loaner, fuck with it too.
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:15 PM
Response to Reply #6
8. Won't Accept Checks - Self Oil Changes -
Even with checks to the BP,they don't state what they're for! And if you by chance changed your own oil, you are really faqed. Even if you remotely kept the receipts for the oil and filter, there is NO PROOF that you actually changed the oil!

No corporation will sue a customer. Too much time and effort. I've talked to VW credit, and asked what happens if I walk away. In 3 months they repossess. (That would be a God send) And, you get a bad credit rating! I can't find anything else about asset forefiture. I'll need to call them again Monday.
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Pavulon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:23 PM
Response to Reply #8
12. Depending
on your financial situation I would arrange another vehicle first (lease, buy), drop the VW off at the dealer and walk away.

If you have a house and a good credit history no one will care about this. If they ever ask just tell them VW screwed you and to look at the rest of your credit.

If you are young and rent and have credit card debt you could get burned.

good luck.

I have had good luck with toyota cars and later lexus. Both have been helpful with mechanical problems that they could have blamed on me. Finding a dealer with a good rep is important too.

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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:33 PM
Response to Reply #12
18. I've Always Been Blessed With Toyotas and Hondas...
Hey, my wife like the Passat. And it was 11 months after we leased it that the first Time Magazine piece appeared. And, I didn't see that, until this problem occured.

Yes, we own our own home. The car is at the Dealership. They won't give us a loaner unless the warranty work was approved, but we have, or had, two vehicles. Our credit card rating is impeccable. We've never missed a payment on anything.

I'm about with your same thinking of "walking away" and taking our chances.
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tammywammy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 02:21 PM
Response to Reply #18
45. Just a little FYI
If you do return the car to the dealership like that, it will go on your record as a repo.
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 02:26 PM
Response to Reply #45
46. Which Means ?????
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tammywammy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 02:28 PM
Response to Reply #46
47. Well,
I'd buy a car before you let the Passat be repoed, otherwise it will be almost impossible to get financed (if you're paying cash, it won't matter).

A repo needs to be at least a year old before you can finance another car.
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 02:42 PM
Response to Reply #47
48. It Won't Be Repossed For 3 Months.
That's what I've been told by VW Credit. Believe me, I've been gathering all of the facts. Haven't made a decision, but I'm looking at all of my options.
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tammywammy Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 02:51 PM
Response to Reply #48
50. I'm just saying
I'd purchase the replacement vehicle before you allow it to be repoed.

You can also just do a voluntary reposession (just drop it off at the dealership and tell them it's a voluntary repo, there's a little bit of paperwork to sign and such), before VW sends them out to hunt the vehicle down. Either way, you turning it in and them coming for it, reflects exactly the same on your credit.
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 03:02 PM
Response to Reply #50
55. I Understand What You're Saying....
I'm just saying I do have time to get another before they repo, if I go that way.

They don't have to look for the car. It's inoperable, and sitting at the dealership.
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Jazzgirl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:44 PM
Response to Reply #12
25. Like you I've had great luck with Toyota and Lexus.
I owned VW's years ago when I was young. Only the first one I bought was new but alas, I totaled it within 6 months. The rest were used and since there wasn't much to the engine anyway, no major problems. I had no idea they treated their customers like that. Its a wonder they even stay in business.
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 01:01 PM
Response to Reply #25
28. Over The Past 3 Years, VW Has Lost Huge Money....
over these bad vehicles. According to Time Magazine, almost 900 Million in the US. But the US is only 20% of their business.
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Pavulon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 03:03 PM
Response to Reply #8
56. in a perfect world
be beneficial if the car was stolen or totaled (with no injuries). But then the insurance company would end up with the problem.

But your financial situation is set up so you will not be killed by this. I would talk to your banker and see what it will mean to them.

Real money problems could come up if you wanted to refi or buy another home. If you go to a small bank where they know you this may be no big deal.

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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 03:05 PM
Response to Reply #56
57. Talking To Our Banker - Good Thought !
I'll do that before making a final decision.
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Strelnikov_ Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 10:53 PM
Response to Reply #8
85. My Understanding Is That For Self Service They Should Not Deny Claims
Edited on Sat Jan-21-06 11:23 PM by loindelrio
If you have a documented service record with receipts for consumables (oil, filters, etc.)

This is the impression I got when this issue has been discussed over at tdiclub.com.

Of course, in practice, they can deny whatever they want, like what has happened to you.

The 05 Jetta TDI I have is a fun car to drive, but if it wasn't for the desire to have a 45 mpg+ car, with a biodiesel option, I would not have a VW based on their customer service history.

I figure the max downside is $5,000 (eating a blown engine), so I was willing to roll the dice with VW.

So why do I not have the dealer do the maintenance? Because they generally screw it up. Go over to tdiclub.com and browse all the reports of the dealer overfilling oil (ever hear of a runaway diesel), using the wrong oil when the newer TDI engines require a specific type (505.01), etc. etc. Damned if you do, damned if you don't.

On Edit:

VWTech8176 is a real asshole.

On Edit Edit:

Couple of posts from TDIclub.com. Obviously there are no guarantees.

Illegal to invalidate a warranty for changing your own oil (or doing any maintenance). You MAY be asked to provide proof of oil used, a receipt is good enough. And no clue, I wouldn't let a dealer touch my car for ANY reason based on the horror stories posted here.

I plan to do all of my own maintenance when the time comes due (it's only at 3000km), and I have already spoken to the dealer, and it will leave my warranty intact.
That said, keep receipts for everything, I keep complete records, right down to fuel receipts, and it's saved my arse more than once before.

It should not be a warranty problem to change your own oil, but stories from the Passat 1.8T oil sludge fiasco indicate that VWoA and VW dealers seem to try to find all possible technicalities to deny warranty service if maintenance was not done at a VW dealer. I.e. be prepared to fight for warranty service.

Getting maintenance done at a VW dealer is no guarantee of it being done correctly, as the stories about VW dealers not knowing that VW 505.01 rated oil is needed in 2004+ TDI engines shows.




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OPERATIONMINDCRIME Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:17 PM
Response to Original message
9. I Feel For You, Car Problems Suck! Thing is though most auto warranties
Edited on Sat Jan-21-06 12:22 PM by OPERATIONMINDCRIME
have the caveat that you need to have proof of oil changes, timing belt changes etc in order for the warranty to not be voided. This is fairly standard and has been done for quite some time. Though it's a really shitty and unfair lesson to learn the hard way, I hope everyone reading this thread realizes how important it is to maintain your vehicle records in case something like this happens. If it does happen, and you are without original documentation, than most dealerships will deny the claim based on the original rules of the warranty. They have to protect themselves, after all (as cold as it can seem).

Sorry to hear about your story and hope it all works out.

On Edit: Though car owners with warranties should be vigilant in storing those records if they need to file a claim someday, this case does represent some special circumstances of a more deeply recognized problem that they admitted to so though I don't know the full details of the defect, a class action lawsuit might definitely carry some legitimacy. Have you consulted a lawyer yet as to the potential for organizing a class action? Power in numbers, friend.
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:23 PM
Response to Reply #9
13. The Problem With Your Statement Is ...
Edited on Sat Jan-21-06 12:24 PM by On Par
It's NOT an OIL problem. The sludge results as a result of a super heated turbo that is prematurely breaking down the oil - almost any kind of oil!

It's a manufacturer defect, and should be under RECALL in the same vein as the old Ford Pinto's with the rear exposed gas tank, Firestone Tires on Explorer's, etc, etc.
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:28 PM
Response to Reply #13
15. That's Where The Orwellian Language Is....
VolksWagon wants you to believe it's an "woe is me" Oil problem. It's just the opposite.

Try this rationale. If the radiator hose breaks, is it the fault of the properly maintained anti-freeze? What, you don't have a receipt for the anti-freeze? Sorry, it's not covered.
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OPERATIONMINDCRIME Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:36 PM
Response to Reply #15
20. Though I Posted It Before You, Maybe You Didn't See The Edit In Time.
Did you catch my edit where I said just that?
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:58 PM
Response to Reply #20
27. Meantime What Do You Do For A Car?
Went back and caught your caveat.

Believe me, I've been through every part of rage you can imagine. Lawyers, online seaches for class action suits. There isn't any.

Thanks for your concern.
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Syncronaut Seven Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:27 PM
Response to Original message
14. Hey! Not all Volkswagens are shit!
I own a highly reliable Vanagon! I can take it apart and reassemble it roadside, in the dark! Don't ask how I developed these skills, just don't go anywhere without a big sheet of cardboard and a roll of bailing wire. :rofl:
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Angry Girl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 03:54 PM
Response to Reply #14
61. Our 63 VW bug also keeps on going and going and ....
Yes, it's true that there's duct tape and bailing wire in places but it doesn't have a black box and we can dismantle it and put it back together by ourselves!
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Digit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:28 PM
Response to Original message
16. I had a 1980 Diesel Rabbit with repeated head gasket problems
The first head gasket went before it was even a year old, and I only had 7000 miles on it.
The dealership where I purchased it NEW was no help.
I even complained to VW and they blew me off.

After that experience, I would never even CONSIDER a VW again.
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Syncronaut Seven Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:35 PM
Response to Reply #16
19. Volkswagens are not to be bought new, they must age to be fully appreciated
Plus it helps a lot if you're a mechanic.

British and Italian cars are the same way, so were most American cars, until the Japanese taught us how to build them.
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JVS Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 01:19 PM
Response to Reply #19
33. You sound like the Saab loving guy in "Crazy People"
"It's not supposed to start all the time" If I quote correctly
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spun_in_montana Donating Member (69 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 08:58 AM
Response to Reply #19
95. My 1974 VW Bus agree's with you.... n/t
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JVS Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:30 PM
Response to Original message
17. They sure don't build em like they used to. Might they sue you?
Those accusations of fraud would make me nervous.
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:38 PM
Response to Reply #17
22. This Service Manager Has Always Been A Pain....
...in the ASS! He's a Napoleon, including the height and I'm sure small dick.

I grew up with a friend who, by chance, through another dealershp, is close to the situation. He's not a salesman. Much higher. He said VW has never sued a customer. They'll never ever do that.

He's tried to assuage the situation, and even and end run, but even with his connections, VW is standing firm.
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alfredo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:36 PM
Response to Original message
21. File a complaint with your state's Att General.
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:41 PM
Response to Reply #21
23. That, and 3 Bucks Will get me a small cup of coffee at SBucks.
Attorney General office: Do you have receipts?

Me: No.

Att Gen Office. Sorry, you're faqed.
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alfredo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 02:43 PM
Response to Reply #23
49. Show where VW has denied everybody, not just you.
Edited on Sat Jan-21-06 02:47 PM by alfredo
find a friendly state rep to champion your cause.

You may not be able to prove your case, but you can show that there is a pattern of deceit. You can show, no matter how valid a case you you might provide, it wouldn't be enough.
Go to your state consumer protection agency, the media, anyone that will listen.
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 02:52 PM
Response to Reply #49
51. I've Checked, and I've Checked...
Edited on Sat Jan-21-06 03:00 PM by On Par
In my Consumer Protection booklet from VW, one of the states without one, is PA. Only recourse is BBB. They suck.

And we've got a Republican Attorney General.

No matter where I've turned this past week, it just sucks.
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alfredo Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 04:07 PM
Response to Reply #51
62. Talk to your state representative.
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Servotron Donating Member (119 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 12:45 PM
Response to Original message
26. Maybe Volkswagen is going back to their roots?
Edited on Sat Jan-21-06 12:48 PM by Servotron


Why the Hell not? We're living in the new fascist era, under the regime of the assmunch whose grandfather made the Third Reich possible in the first place. Maybe Adolf's ghost is hanging out at VW headquarters helping them design engines.
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 01:03 PM
Response to Reply #26
29. It's Still A State Owned Company.....
..with politicans on their Board of Governors. The "People's Car" may have been the only correct thing Hitler did! That's unless you drove the original Beetle where the engine was in the back, and the trunk in the front. Nice concept until you encountered a telephone poll.
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JVS Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 01:13 PM
Response to Reply #26
31. As Mr. Burns might say "But his cars worked dammit!"
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sendero Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 01:17 PM
Response to Original message
32. It's pretty well known..
Edited on Sat Jan-21-06 01:20 PM by sendero
.... that VWs made since 2000 or so are crap. Not only this problem, but several others including Mass Airflow Sensors going bad (expensive) and lots of other minor problems.

Some blame the problems on the Mexican manufacturing, but lots of people seem to be able to build good cars in Mexico, so I don't know.

I was going to buy my wife a used Jetta TDI (diesel) a few months back, but we noticed that the ones for sale (2-3 years old) had already had 2-3 owners. After digging deeper, we decided not to buy a VW.

It's too bad, because VW builds some really nice looking cars, and great to drive cars, but they have some serious manufacturing/design problems.

By not standing behind their cars, VW is flirting with disaster. There's this thing called the internet, where consumers share information. Anyone thinking of buying a car, I suggest www.carsurvey.org, a good site with anecdotal information from car owners.
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JVS Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 01:24 PM
Response to Reply #32
35. I'm unimpressed with my mom's 1994 Jetta. I believe my 1989 civic to be..
in better shape, which is a sad statement for VW's quality.

Not a big fan of their stuff lately. The Golf seems to be turning into a typical european (european market that is) amorphous blob mobile and the Passat is getting very pricy. The 1995 passats seemed cool, and that was before they moved manufacturing to Mexico
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sendero Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 01:29 PM
Response to Reply #35
37. Hehe..
... well, after ruling out a Jetta, we wound up with a Civic. Wife loves it, but time will tell how reliable it is. If history is any guide, it will be a good car for a long time :)
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supernova Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 01:42 PM
Response to Reply #32
39. Carsurvey.com
Thanks for the tip. I'm looking for a good used car for which I can pay cash.
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sendero Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 01:43 PM
Response to Reply #39
40. It really is .org....
... that I've used and recommend - www.carsurvey.org
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trogdor Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 09:11 PM
Response to Reply #32
75. And yet there were Consumer Reports' top rated car.
Bollocks.
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sendero Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 06:57 AM
Response to Reply #75
94. The only part of Consumer Reports...
... that is worth the paper it's printed on is the Repair History survey that readers supply the data for.

They've made so many ridiculously bad calls over the years, they have just zero credibility.
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HooptieWagon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 01:20 PM
Response to Original message
34. Three words - Class Action Lawsuit!!!!
Any lawyer would jump at the chance to take on this action on a contingency basis. Also, working in conjunction with the other owners will allow the funds to take out ads and issue press releases. Facing an organized and united group of angry leasees ready and willing to go public will have VW crapping their shorts.
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 01:51 PM
Response to Reply #34
41. I Can't Figure Out Why A Lawyere Hasn't Jumped On This...
I'd be thrilled to join a Class Action. I can't find one. Only a petition for one at myVWlemon.com
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Junkdrawer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 01:28 PM
Response to Original message
36. Lemon Law Lawyers in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania:
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 01:53 PM
Response to Reply #36
42. Thank You, But Lemon Laws In PA .....
...must be under 12,000 miles. The other law that applies is the Federal Magnuson Moss Warranty Act.

Thing is, I can't wait 1.5 to 2 years for a court date. That's what the Lemon Law lawyer for PA have told me.
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supernova Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 01:34 PM
Response to Original message
38. In the market for a used car
Edited on Sat Jan-21-06 01:35 PM by supernova
Wow! Thanks for sharing your story. VW has put its customers like you in a real bind.

I'm in the market for a good slightly used car and while not my first choice, the Passat was in play if it came it at the price I want. edit: I am definitely crossing the Passat off my list after reading this.

Sorry to hear that. Would it be worth it to get a lawyer? Say, look at your individual situation with that particular dealer?
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 02:01 PM
Response to Reply #38
43. It's Not The Dealership's Call...
It's VW's. Many who have the same problem, and I've read about, even if fixed, the Stop Engine light continues to appear. Car's don't seem to run correctly afterward.

Stay away from any VW with a 1.8 Turbo engine.

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grace0418 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 02:59 PM
Response to Reply #38
53. I STRONGLY suggest buying some of those
consumer report used-car editions. That helped us decide what car to buy. Not only do they rate make and model, but model year as well. VW are pretty consistently poorly rated. We ended up finding a Subaru from a really highly rated model year and we are really happy with it.
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 02:05 PM
Response to Original message
44. Someone Should Bump This To Greatest
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natrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 03:00 PM
Response to Reply #44
54. that sucks,,i have a motorcycle like that and will never buy another
jd power reliability list of like 60 auto manfs,,,and vw is in the bottom 7 or 8
shame because there new 2.o fsi turbo engine/dsg tranny is outstanding---until it breaks i guess
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 03:10 PM
Response to Reply #54
60. VW Has Also Greatly Increased The Size Of The Oil Filter....
..and requires pure synthetic oil.
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grace0418 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 02:54 PM
Response to Original message
52. I've never owned a VW but I can't believe how many
people I know who do. It's such a popular car among 20/30-somethings, especially hipsters. I just don't get it. At one point the people working in the cubes on either side of me both had VW (one passat, one beetle) and they were on the phone with mechanics CONSTANTLY. The guy I carpool with has a beetle and every other week some stupid thing breaks on it.

I tell ya, my Honda civic may not be glamorous but it is sooooooooo reliable. As is my Subaru. I had a crush on beetles for awhile but now I will never buy a VW.

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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 03:08 PM
Response to Reply #52
58. The Passat Is Scary Fast....
You could be going 75mph on the highway, and touch the pedal to go around another car, and you look down and you're doing 100. When they run, they're quiet and smooth.
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grace0418 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 05:15 PM
Response to Reply #58
68. That doesn't matter much in Chicago. With traffic you
don't get a chance to go 75 very often. ;) But seriously, it's true my civic could use a little more umph when trying to merge onto the highway but I think that's a small price to pay for the reliability over the long haul.

I rented a mazda protege for a week once and that car had a lot of pep. Boy was that fun to drive! We would've gotten one of those Mazda hatchbacks (the 3 or something like that?) but ended up with the Subaru because we needed a little more space. Those are great though.
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JVS Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 03:09 PM
Response to Reply #52
59. The same people would recoil in horor at the thought of buying...
"a shitty american car"
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grace0418 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 05:10 PM
Response to Reply #59
67. Admittedly, I'm not a fan of American cars myself but
I think Hondas, Subarus, Mazdas and Toyotas are just better cars than VWs.
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dogday Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 04:11 PM
Response to Original message
63. Who knew you would have to be an attorney
to be able to get your car fixed. These corporations get you coming and going...
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JanMichael Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 04:17 PM
Response to Original message
64. Class action suit
go after them in court
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 05:19 PM
Response to Reply #64
69. It's Too Much Time, But I Think I'd Win....
...since it's not an oil problem as they claim, but a manufacturer's defect
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bleedingheart Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 04:29 PM
Response to Original message
65. Holy Shit....I am really sorry to hear about this
that really pisses me off that they aren't going to help you and it is entirely wrong that they won't let you out of the lease and just take the car.

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bleedingheart Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 04:32 PM
Response to Reply #65
66. ps...I learned my lessons with "turbo" engines with the Ford Probe
that care was a huge piece of shit.

it was my husband's car when we married...in one year it cost more than $1700 to fix. I told them I wanted to get rid of the klunker when after trying to "fix" it another time it failed to even accelerate.

I remember it vividly...I was 5 mos pregnant with our first child and this stupid turbo was giving us problems...and it cost more money to repair because of the way the engine was configured...
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 05:30 PM
Response to Reply #66
71. Those Ford Probe's Were A Piece Of Junk!
Edited on Sat Jan-21-06 05:34 PM by On Par
Plus, when you drove the Probe, the nose of the front end was heavy and always caused the car to move oddly from side to side.

I see you're in Westmorland. I'm sure you know Marybeth who is working on voting machines. I'm in Washington, and you can find us at http://www.wcdcpa.net
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 05:25 PM
Response to Reply #65
70. You Should Be On This Side !
My wife was totally traumitized, and I wasn't much better. Neither of us got much sleep for days. It's like a doctor telling you your disease is terminal, and while you continue fighting, you know there is no way out! Typing it all out has helped get it out of my head, where you constantly go over every detail. Too bad this can't be reversed with DNA testing!

As I said to my friends who sympathized. I haven't felt this bad since Troy Palamalu's interception was ruled incomplete! That was a kick in the stomach, but this one is more lasting.
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welshTerrier2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 05:55 PM
Response to Original message
72. never again
i have a Passat with about 30,000 miles ... no receipts for oil changes ... so far no problems but i've been reading all the horror stories for awhile now ...

mrs. wt2 and i have owned VW's for over 25 years ... they screw me; i screw them ... i will never buy another VW unless they provide proper service ...

the 1.8 turbo problems are due to a manufacturing defect and VW should make good on it ...
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 09:30 PM
Response to Reply #72
80. There Is "No Warning" On This Time Bomb
Edited on Sat Jan-21-06 09:32 PM by On Par
Our Passat ran fine up to the instant the Stop Engine Light came on at 30,620 miles. It should say "Tilt - Game Over"

Best you look for cancelled checks. Go to your dealer with those dated checks and see if he can find his receipts.

There are thousands like us. Check http://myvwlemon.com I believe there is also something like suckers.com !

Or Here at our Fed Gov't site:
http://www-odi.nhtsa.dot.gov/cars/problems/complain/
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uncle ray Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 06:04 PM
Response to Original message
73. actually, it may NOT be VW's fault.
i've been reading a few places in the last week, about an issue with oil similar to what you are describing, i think at least, your termilology is a little off, by "turbo lifters" i assume you just mean the lifters, or tappets, which ride on the camshaft, and operate the valves. what i've been reading, is that the EPA has required the reduction of zinc and other additives in oil(resulting in less lubricity), causing problems with camshaft/lifter wear, especially in high performance engines with flat tappets. the solution many are suggesting, is using Rotella oil, it's formulated for diesel engines, or else "racing" oil, it has additives that are different than the "approved" oils. it actually may be VW covering their own asses, it's not their fault the oil isn't the same as it used to be, and they are just as powerless against the powers that be as we are.
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 09:26 PM
Response to Reply #73
78. Even If what you say is true.....
...VW was 1 1/2 years behind the curve of my 2003 in changing the "recommendations" for their oil. And recommendations is all that it is until the new 2005 models. It's still the overheating causing the premature breakdown of oil, not the red-herring of oil itself.

You can't lose sight of the fact that even if all maintenance was performed by VW, in proper intervals, the sludge and Stop Engine has still occurred. Hence, it's not the oil.

And yes, lifters - tappets
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lectrobyte Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 09:28 PM
Response to Reply #73
79. A 2003 car would not require a high zinc oil, assuming there were
any on the market anywhere even when the car was new in 2002, much less later on. It sounds like another word of mouth "blame the EPA", and I'm just not sure that's the case. I know the Volvo turbo I used to own held like 7 quarts of oil, helping to keep it cool. I suspect the VW 1.8 turbo is just about half of that oil capacity. The only person I knew that had good luck with a VW turbo had modified their car to provide for oil circulation after the motor was shut off to prevent cooking turbo bearings and coking the oil. Seems like a design flaw to me. If lack of zinc in the oil is such a problem, then why aren't other manufacturers seeing this happen?
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welshTerrier2 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 11:03 PM
Response to Reply #73
86. are the synthetic oils any better (or worse)?
i was thinking about using Mobil 1 synthetic motor oil ... i went to this webpage: http://www.mobil1.com/usa-english/motoroil/car_care/whi... and Mobil recommended I use Mobil 1 0W-40 for my car ...

any thoughts on this??
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sendero Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 11:20 PM
Response to Reply #73
87. Lots of manufacturers..
.... are building turbo engines under the same constraints without having the same problems. It's not even the turbo that is the problem, turbos have been made reliably since the 70s.

There is more than one problem with these later model Passats and Jettas. There is some serious breakdown in the engineering and manufacture of these cars.

Not that long ago, VW made solid, long lasting reliable cars. I suspect that like lots of companies, they made some seriously flawed cost-cutting decisions.

As I have said, it is really a shame. The Passat and Jetta are both really cool cars, I love their clean-line styling, and they are very fun to drive, great handling. They just don't hold up very well.

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Lexingtonian Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 02:29 AM
Response to Reply #87
90. yep

I grew up in part in West Germany, late Seventies and early Eighties. The Jettas were a new model then and the bugs pretty well worked out of the pre-turbo Passat.

Things changed in Germany in the early and mid Nineties. In cars, average Germans wanted (even) more speed and steering. (I think Opel was the culprit in raising expectations in middle class car performance there during the Eighties.) Management also 'went American'. I.e. cost-cutting at excessive price in performance and reliability, then selling the product on the reputation of the "German engineering" they were undermining. And high turnover rate/short term profit/big corporate management behavior- loss of pride in the product, letting lemons or bad engineering happen and ambush the next management team, screwing the people unhappy with the product and relying on their powerlessness, dispersal, lack of information, and bad consumer protection laws to limit costs.

In the past ten years (read: under Republican screwing of consumer protection and corporate liability law), the U.S. has been the perfect country to take this stuff to an outrageous level. Ford and GM do this stuff every day, DaimlerChrysler had no shame about doing likewise almost immediately, VW and the rest followed.

I buy Japanese cars where the bugs have been worked out and fixed. Buying GM or Ford makes some sense around the Great Lakes with their winter weather. The present variety of German cars is imo for and about the corporate drone people whose lives are captured in Dilbert cartoons.
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Poor Richard Lex Donating Member (256 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 07:41 PM
Response to Original message
74. Go see a lawyer
get a consultation with someone who does lemon law issues and sue those bastards. I believe the law is that you get triple damages
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 09:17 PM
Response to Reply #74
76. PA Lemon Law for 12,000 miles only.
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 09:19 PM
Response to Reply #76
77. As For An Attorney....
I do have an attorney. I'm working this every way possible. But VW will kill you with time. My attorney isn't even permitted to call and "TALK" to them. Everything must be in writing from this point on.

In other words, I pay thousands hoping somewhere down the line, possibly 2-4 years, I can get a court date. VW has been around this block before.
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Junkdrawer Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-23-06 08:26 AM
Response to Reply #77
130. I'd approach one of the lemon law attorneys with an offer to help...
organize a class for a class action - with the attorney fees on contingency and paid upon a successful completion of the suit. Sounds like the only recourse open at this time.
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 09:34 PM
Response to Original message
81. Read Down This List Of Passat Sludge Problems....
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Captain Hilts Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-23-06 07:39 AM
Response to Reply #81
127. Interesting! nt
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 09:37 PM
Response to Original message
82. Read This VW Passat Outrage ! All Being Denied!
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splat@14 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Jan-21-06 09:40 PM
Response to Original message
83. Don't like to hear that. I have a 2002 Passat W8 with @ 60K on it -
no problem but, no turbo either. Doesn't matter that mine is okay, at issue is how you were treated over a valid claim as that could happen to anyone.

Thanks for the post and good luck my friend.
Splat.
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tomreedtoon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 01:26 AM
Response to Original message
88. Volkswagens are not mass-market cars...what do you expect?
If this had happened to a mass-market car like a Toyota Camry, there would not only be lots of public records of it, there would be half a million Camry dealers who would raise an utter stink, and probably an aftermarket fix for it.

However, Volkswagens have not been mass-market cars for the better part of two decades. Not since "the Bug" stopped being produced. Now VW's are high-priced custom cars for people who like to pretend they're counter-cultural and sophisticated by buying one. As far as ordinary people are concerned, they're in the same class as a Volvo, Mercedes or BMW. An expensive car for rich people.

I am truly sorry you got burned. Perhaps you should buy a more common car next time. It's not simply a matter of "snootiness" - it's that a mass-market car will have lots of used parts available, all through the country, and you won't go broke trying to fix it.
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 02:07 PM
Response to Reply #88
96. You Can't Be Serious With That Comment ....
The Passat is in the same class as a Camry or an Accord.

I've had 2 Camry's, 2 Accords, and this is the 2nd VW. This has nothing to do with anything you say. It only has to do with a bad engine design that VW won't take responsibility for.
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Strelnikov_ Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 02:48 PM
Response to Reply #88
99. " . . Cars For People Who Like To Pretend They're Counter-Cultural . . "
Edited on Sun Jan-22-06 02:48 PM by loindelrio
So I was trying to pretend I'm counter-cultural and sophisticated when I bought my TDI last spring. That explains everything.

And I thought it was just to have a car that gets 45mpg+, have a vehicle that could burn a bio fuel that could be home-brewed in a pinch, and have a vehicle for which I could store 100 gal. of fuel relatively safely in my garage once shortages begin this spring.

So glad this is a liberal board where I don't have to see assholes make sweeping generalizations like we see at the Reich-Wing boards.
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tomreedtoon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 05:52 PM
Response to Reply #99
103. No rationalizations, just basic truth about car repair.
When you buy a car based on theory or style, instead of results, you've got to take the consequences with it. Your super-duper ecological car won't have parts available when it breaks or gets hit. My garden-variety Camry (the third Toyota I've owned over three decades) will have lots of them. If my engine goes bad I can get a rebuild. Good luck trying to find a rebuild engine for yours. And while I can't stand by the gas pump and brag that I can run it on cow chips, it has very respectable gas economy and reliability. (My previous Camry hit 100,000 miles.)

Check Consumer Reports for their reliability ratings (one of the few things they still do well). If you don't buy a car based on how long the sucker will last, combined with its popularity so you'll be able to get used parts, you're consigning yourself to buying a new car in two or three years.

After all, if you can't get it fixed economically, that 45 MPG will go to zero real fast.
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Strelnikov_ Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 06:11 PM
Response to Reply #103
106. Delete
Edited on Sun Jan-22-06 06:39 PM by loindelrio
Not worth the effort.

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mountainvue Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 06:23 PM
Response to Reply #88
109. You get what you pay for with Volvo. n/t
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Cessna Invesco Palin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-23-06 07:27 AM
Response to Reply #88
125. Maybe in the US.
In Europe they're taxis. At least half of the taxis where I live are Passats. Hard to get more mass market than that.
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tomreedtoon Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-23-06 10:33 AM
Response to Reply #125
131. That's the point. Europeans understand auto recycling.
Too many Americans go to the auto parts store or the dealer to get the parts to fix cars - or their mechanics do. They often end up paying a fortune for new parts, when at a nearby used parts facility, they could get perfectly good parts recycled from wrecks. And in Europe, because of the parts availability, owning a Ford SUV would be an act of stupidity. (Well, it is here too, but...)
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slaveplanet Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 02:28 AM
Response to Original message
89. This problem reminds me of GM diesel
dillema.

History of the 350 Diesel

Oldsmobile came out with the 5.7 Litre 350 cubic inch Diesel engine in 1978, and was available in almost everything from Chevy Trucks to Cadillac during its production period. They where produced mainly for fuel economy due to the gas shortage in the late 70's early 80's. They were known to be very bad engines as they arrived. Lots of Injector Pump problems, blowing head gaskets, and poor maintenence due to lack of knowledge basically killed them. Many engines were professionally changed out by GM mechanics, but still with many top end problems and poor maintenence, and also due to water in the fuel.The first few years of the 350 Diesel were the worst ever, as far as most people are concerned, in some people's opinions, it was the worst engine ever, but it was all due to poor knowledge and lack of maintenence as far as I'm concerned.

All Oldsmobile Diesels were discontinued for the 1986 model year eventhough they were practically perfect by then, therefore most were forgotten, and a wide margin were gone...not everyday do you see a car or truck with a 350 Diesel, but when you do, they are runnig great! The few that chose to put a remanufactured engine in instead of a gas 350 are still driving them with tons of miles on them.
If you take care of them, they will last forever!



Here's a used buyer's review for th 1.8t from a trusted mechanic friend of mine.

This for the 2000my Audi a4, but the passat is similar.

We service lots of them.

Let's see - check front suspension - control arms (all 8) like to
develop play and need replacing when they do. Really you should do the
whole set at once but no-one does.

Check on engine oil quality - if it hasn't had good (mobil 1 / castrol)
synthetic used in it consistently then you may get sludging issues.
We've replaced a few engines with this problem - it will cost you an
entire engine including the turbo. Check under oil cap and dipstick
for sludge.

MAF sensors always need replacing

Boost diverter valves always go bad

ECT sensor

they are fussy about the correct spark plugs

the timing belts are a disaster waiting to happen if not done -
preferably early - preferably do all the pullies too

do the waterpump at the same time - a lot had plastic impeller blades
that work their way loose.

newer ones with electric connectors on the thermostat tend to need the
thermostat replacing

check the wheel bearings - rears particularly.

oil leaks from the top of the engine - this is often falsely diagnosed
as valve covers, it's actually the cam tensioner seals.

Despite this list they are pretty good cars.


Notice that little bit about running Mobil1...I myself would run quick if the car has no service record of straight synthetic after inital break in period.

The reason for this is that synthetic oil has a much higher coking temp than dino oil...no sludge.

Is it the fault of VW for not informing customers of this?

You bet.

Is it a design problem? not neccesarily

The 1.8t motor was/is used in many platforms, and when it runs properly it is an extremely powerful engine(the 1.8 in the Audi TT is 225hp)

Possibly some of the design limitations had to do with the broad number of models it was to be installed in.

Perhaps a bigger problem has to do with the Head of Vw Ferdinand Piech, In the late 90's huge profits and cheap oil led to what amounts to shortsightedness, hubris and one upsmanship at the the highest levels of these automakers. Piech was possibly the worst offender, Buying up marques like Bugatti and throwing focus and engineering to producing the fastest car in the world, and ignoring it's bread and butter lineup at VW....big mistake , and as a result Piech is out. Vw is back at focusing on the problems at hand.

here's another post I found that might help othee 1.8t owners

Ok, I've been reading all these posts about adjuster seals so I'm going
to
put in my 2 cents.

I hope when you guys get these cars in your shop with cam tensioners
leaking
that you are also replacing or checking the suction jet pump.

At our shop we find that most all of these cars that are leaking out of
the
tensioners are due to excessive crank case pressure that builds up and
actually starts blowing out the seals just above the half moon.

Those of you who do this for a living, and you get a car with leaky
tensioners, remove the suction jet pipe and try to blow through the
smaller
port (where the venturi takes affect).

If it is plugged then that is the cause. Ill take a picture of a
suction jet
pipe, or provide the part number just in case you have no idea what I'm
talking about. This was a poorly designed component.

I feel that the SJP should be replaced every 20k. Some later modelish
VWs
and audis don't have them but most do. I'll bet that any car you have
that
is really leaking badly out of the tensioner seals has a plugged
suction jet
pipe.


So there you have it... running dino oil= it sludges, clogs the SJP, blows the seals, and all this causes overheating and worse sludge right until that engine light comes on.










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KnaveRupe Donating Member (700 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 03:02 AM
Response to Original message
92. Wow. That sucks, however
...I have to disagree with the last line of your post:

"If you have this 1.8 turbo engine. Sell it. If you don't have a VW, don't buy one!"

If you know about the problem, and you foist it off on some unsuspecting schmuck, aren't you committing fraud?
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 02:09 PM
Response to Reply #92
97. The Question Is....
...Is this FRAUD on VW's part????
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KnaveRupe Donating Member (700 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 03:12 AM
Response to Original message
93. Wow. That sucks, however
...I have to disagree with the last line of your post:

"If you have this 1.8 turbo engine. Sell it. If you don't have a VW, don't buy one!"

If you know about the problem, and you foist it off on some unsuspecting schmuck, aren't you committing fraud?
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jsamuel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 03:55 PM
Response to Reply #93
101. haha, tell that to VW
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lumberjack_jeff Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 02:26 PM
Response to Original message
98. Anyone ever try a bypass oil filter in a VW?
http://www.bypassfilter.com/MotorGuardFilters.htm

http://www.bypassfilter.com/product.htm

They're the old "toilet paper oil filter" that they used to sell in JC Whitney catalogs. It sounds like a good idea, low volume filtration that removes particulates down to a couple of microns. To maintain adequate oil flow, a spin-on filter will only filter down to 10-40 microns. The bypass filter only takes 10% of the flow of the main filter to polish the oil.

The next new rig I buy will get one of these.
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lectrobyte Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 03:39 PM
Response to Reply #98
100. Probably wouldn't help with an engine that tends to sludge up.
What you need is a turbo timer. If I had one of these cars, I'd definitely be running synthetic oil.
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 06:13 PM
Response to Reply #100
107. Running Synthetic Oil Is Nice Monday Morning QBacking
Edited on Sun Jan-22-06 06:14 PM by On Par
...but if Synthetic was the ticket, why didn't Volkswagen use synthetic from 1998-2004? If you read their sludge warranty, it says, even after they found the problem, that synthetic was only "recommended!"

And even when serviced by VW, the sludge problem still occurred. You're focusing on the result, not the cause. As I've said many times in this thread, It's not the oil. It's the engine!
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lumberjack_jeff Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-23-06 12:00 AM
Response to Reply #107
123. I know it sucks, but it IS monday morning...
Now that we know of your misfortune with VW machinery, we know some of the pitfalls. I agree that if I owned one, knowing what I know now I'd use synthetic - and a bypass filter.

Or, I'd buy a Chevy.
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lectrobyte Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-23-06 07:16 AM
Response to Reply #107
124. I agree -- it's a design problem. Just trying to point out what I
would do about it if I owned one of these cars that hadn't self destructed. I usually don't have to worry about the factory warranty since cars are usually well past that before they are in my price range.
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Strelnikov_ Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 05:16 PM
Response to Original message
102. Sludge: Jumping through hoops to make a case
http://cdn.consumerreports.org/cro/cars/maintenance-acc...

. . .

Sludge often forms when oil oxidizes and breaks down after prolonged exposure to high temperatures. The baked oil turns gelatinous and can block vital oil passages, which could lead to repairs exceeding $8,000 or even an engine replacement.

While sludge often results from poor upkeep, notably not changing oil at prescribed intervals, some engines from Audi, Chrysler, Saab, Toyota, and Volkswagen appear prone to it (see the chart below).

. . .

The Center for Auto Safety says it received about 1,300 sludge complaints in the first half of 2005. Toyota, the company with the most engines in question, cited 3,400 complaints through 2002 but hasn't provided an updated number since. And while about 4.7 million engines sold in the U.S. may have sludge-prone designs, the problem rate as reflected in our reliability data is very low. But that's little solace to those affected by it.

. . .

Consumer Reports urges vehicle owners to keep thorough records of their automobile maintenance and repairs and make sure all receipts contain the date, mileage, and vehicle identification number. CR also recommends that owners of vehicles with sludge-prone engines use an American Petroleum Institute-approved synthetic motor oil or change oil according to the extreme use schedule in the vehicle's manual.

Synthetics have a higher tolerance for extreme heat and flow better in cold temperatures. When using any oil, be sure it meets manufacturer viscosity guidelines.

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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 06:05 PM
Response to Reply #102
104. Thanks For The Article....
It only shows VW will do everything and anything to not have to pay for the repair.

I sent it on to my attorney.
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jmowreader Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 06:10 PM
Response to Original message
105. Bad news: "synthetically reinforced" isn't "synthetic"
Oils like Castrol Syntec Blend, BP Select and Mobil 1 Semi Synthetic are not pure synthetic oils. They consist of a high-quality mineral oil mixed with a quantity of synthetic oil--no idea what ratio BP is putting in Select, but Syntec Blend is 25 percent synthetic, 75 percent mineral.

Doing this makes the oil slicker, which is one of synthetics' big advantages.

The other advantage of synthetic is that it doesn't sludge up the way mineral oil can, and that's something a synthetic blend does NOT fix.
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 06:18 PM
Response to Reply #105
108. You Still Didn't Read What VW Required....
...According to the specs in my manual, I was using "BETTER OIL" than VW recommended! So, tell us, how could it be the oil?
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jmowreader Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 07:01 PM
Response to Reply #108
113. Here's how it works
When you run an engine, you react gasoline with air to form water, various forms of pollution, and a lot of heat.

Some of the water and pollutants blow past your piston rings into your oil, where they hook up with the bitumens and paraffins they can't get out of mineral oil to form sludge. And when you feed the sludge into a turbocharger, the shit polymerizes into a very hard plastic...which is the reason your car is sitting in your dealer's boneyard at this time.

Synthetic oil is made by chemical reaction (fun fact: most of the esters in synthetic oil are made by reacting hydrogen with carbon monoxide) and contains no bitumens or paraffins...you get all the good stuff you want in your oil, and nothing you don't. There's nothing in there that participates in sludge formation, so you don't get any sludge formation.

The only thing I can think of is that VW fucked up when they wrote the manual, which happens--remember the later service bulletin demanding synthetic oil be run in this engine?--and now they want to blame the owners for doing what VW said to do in the first place, which ain't right.

VW should fix this fuckup. Unfortunately, doing so will probably put at least VW of America out of business. That might not be a bad thing.

Anyone got that number to Jacoby and Meyers?
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 07:26 PM
Response to Reply #113
114. The US is Only 20% of VW 's Business...
..but manufacturer defects didn't stop Ford from recalling the Pinto, Firestone tires on Explorer's and loads of other manufacturer defects.

VW didn't faq up on the manual, they faqed up on the engine design. Too much proof that they didn't. 426,000 Passat owners who got the letter in August of '04 can't be wrong.
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flvegan Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 06:37 PM
Response to Original message
110. You have "documentation" so I'd suggest a couple things...
1. Do NOT stop your lease payments. Sort of like not paying rent because the landlord won't fix something. Contract always wins.
2. Get the car fixed. You need the car, and not fixing it may be another lease violation which will cost you TONS when you turn it back in.
3. When you get the car fixed, write a check.
4. Stop payment on same.

Let them sue you. Yeah, you might need a lawyer, but the Discovery process will destroy them. PLUS, if it has any possibility of going class action, that same Discovery might hurt them later. If they know they have a "time bomb" on their hands, they'll write you off. If they send you to collections, you have 10 days to refute the claim, and they should go away.

It would appear that letting them define "documentation" here is the problem. You have documentation, they're just refuting it. Fuck 'em...refute it in court. When the subpoena works her magic, and the mechanic is stating that that car has been in for x number of oil changes, well, that's sworn testimony that no judge and no jury can possibly deny.

The "My Pet Goat" version of that would be: Did you change your oil? Yes. Did he pay you to change his oil? Yes. (To VW rep): Do you have proof that the oil was not changed as dictated? No. Good. Case dismissed, and get outta my courtroom, asshole.
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Jan-24-06 11:23 AM
Response to Reply #110
132. It's a Thought, THanks !
I'll email this to our lawyer to see what he thinks of the "Stop Payment."
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natrat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 06:42 PM
Response to Original message
111. sounds like a 1.8 owner should change oil at 1500 miles
i dont know what it is about VWs that makes them attractive, i just like them
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Blue Diadem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 06:56 PM
Response to Original message
112. Maybe this firm can advise you:

http://www.lemonlaw.com/pastatute.html

snip:
It's important to note that even if your car falls outside of the limitations established by the Lemon Law, there are still Federal breach of warranty laws which apply. If your car has an original or extended manufacturer's warranty and has a problem that can't be fixed after three repair attempts, chances are we can help you.


The Lemon Law can be confusing and is open up to numerous interpretations if you don't understand how it works. If you are driving a defective vehicle and you want to find out if you are entitled to cost-free legal help, feel free to submit a question online, or fill out our Get Rid Of Your Lemon worksheet for a free case evaluation. You can also call our toll-free hotline, 1-800-LEMON-LAW (1-800-536-6652).






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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 07:28 PM
Response to Reply #112
115. Thank You. I'll Call First Thing Monday !
At this point, I'll try anything.
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Blue Diadem Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 08:19 PM
Response to Reply #115
118. Keeping my fingers crossed for you
My son used Krohn & Moss(I got the link for PA through their site) and he received a sizeable settlement on his truck. They unfortunately couldn't help my daughter because she was into her extended coverage..frustrating for her because we didn't know who to contact until my son had his truck problem.

Luckily while she still had her extended coverage, she changed dealerships to do her repairs and they seem to have repaired the problem after 2 or 3 attempts..and that was after having it in 9 or 10 times, several days each time, at her regular dealer.

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earth mom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 07:43 PM
Response to Original message
116. If you let the car be repossessed
the dealership-not VW-can and probably will sue you for the balance of your lease PLUS the balance of what they can get for the car AFTER then sell it-which won't be much. My SIL had a leased car her boyfriend wrecked and they sued her and now she owes the dealer like 10K-plus it's on her credit report. You might want to look into getting a lawyer before you do anything. Just my 2 cents. Good Luck!
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 09:47 PM
Response to Reply #116
121. I'll Be Checking With VW Credit.
Really, it's a last resort, but I'm getting close to jumping.
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fighttheevilempire Donating Member (183 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 09:08 PM
Response to Original message
119. Mind my injection -
But I know cars pretty well and turbos do not have cam lobes or lifters. Maybe there's sometihng lost in the translation, but that's what I'm reading. What it sounds like is this: Turbochargers recirculate hot exhaust air back into the intake. The super hot air passes through the cylinder head, cooking the oil. Filter's being filled with molasses instead of oil, reducing the oil pressure to the entire system from that point forward. That's why the oil light. No oil pressure = expensive noises.

If oil is getting hot enough to turn to sludge, that's something that should have been worked out in the testing phase. Ideally the solution would be an additional oil cooler. They won't want to hear that, and likely won't do anything about it, but that's the best solution.

Cars are designed to make it to their warranty's end. They can be made to last much longer in some cases. Automatic transmissions are another example. I doubt I could find an average passenger car with an adequate transmission cooler... but that's another story. It sounds like they're feeding everyone a line of BS here, and frankly only a class action suit would have a chance at fixing it. Just goes to show all this foreign car stuff isn't always up to the hype people give it.
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On Par Donating Member (912 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 09:47 PM
Response to Reply #119
120. You're Right...
..and VW has added more air intake to keep the oil cool, along with a newer larger oil filter.
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raysr Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jan-22-06 10:20 PM
Response to Original message
122. Main bearings (bad)
can cause low oil pressure with the oil pan full of oil.
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Mutley Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-23-06 07:36 AM
Response to Original message
126. I have a Jetta
and over the summer the battery kept dying. I'd buy a new battery, and POOF! Within a week or two it would die again. I was told after the third time it was the alternator, so I bought a new one. Still had the same problem. After a few more visits, they finally found a wire that had burned through the rubber coating and was blowing the alternator. I spent an ungodly amount of money on this before they finally discovered the real problem.

I grew up on VWs, my family always had them. They never had any major problems. It seems that's changing, though. A shame. I would have bought VWs for life if they had kept up the good record.
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Ganja Ninja Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-23-06 07:45 AM
Response to Original message
128. I quit buying VW's back in 1976 after I bought a Rabbit model.
Edited on Mon Jan-23-06 07:46 AM by Sentinel Chicken
I had nothing but problems and vowed I'd never buy another. They are overpriced and unreliable. Just about any of the Japanese makes are better. They are more refined, a match on performance, they cost less and they're more reliable.
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triguy46 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Jan-23-06 08:19 AM
Response to Original message
129. VW: All style, no substance
Historically poor customer service, historically unreliable vehicles. All the way back to the 80's era rabbits and golfs that ate valve guides by 70K miles. They are neat looking and fun for a while, then a freaking nightmare. Overpriced too. Buy Japanese.
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