12th Oct 2007, 10:36

I have a 2002 VW Volkswagen. I drove it for almost 2 years now always with a constant slight and subtle titter-tatter sound coming from under the car. Just yesterday my ENGINE STOP LIGHT turned on and won't go away. Note: I JUST changed my oil about a week ago so that was extremely odd for it to come up after the new oil change. At this point I know any servicing that will be done will be expensive because as as VW ages, you should prepare yourself for hefty repairs. If anybody has anymore experience with what to do when the engine light comes on, share with us.

13th Nov 2007, 11:42

My husband and I bought our oldest daughter a used 2002 VW Passat 1.8L Turbo in August '06, to get back and forth to college. It had 90K miles on it, but appeared to be in excellent condition - inside and out.

It was the most comfortable car I had ever driven. I've always been a Honda fan, and was seriously considering switching my loyalty over to VW for my own next purchase.

This car ran without incident until late September '07. My daughter had the oil changed regularly (usually between 4000 and 5000 miles), and always using 5W30 Synthetic Oil. All, but one of the oil changes were done at a Kwik Lube in our small town, as we do not have a VW dealership within 65 miles. We changed the oil once ourselves at home.

In September, at approx. 114,000K, my daughter called to tell me that her CHECK ENGINE STOP/OIL PRESS light had come on. I had her drive it home. The light was intermittent at first, probably for about a week to 10 days. She only drove it to work, which is about 4 minutes from our house from that time on. We took it to a shop, and they replaced the oil sending unit for an easy $61. Within a day, the engine light had come back on.

As I usually do, I referred to the Internet for help, and that's when I realized we had bigger problems. The Internet is alive with other Passat Turbo owners with this exact problem!!! It's been going on since 2003 or 2004, and we just didn't do the proper research when buying the car. I'm still mad at myself about that!

Anyway, we had the car towed to a VW dealership, and after they quoted us $600 just to tear the engine down for diagnosis... I brought up the possible sludge problem. The service lady gave me no real argument, and told me that we would have to present to her oil change receipts showing regular changes and use of synthetic oil only. Thank God we kept all the receipts (even for the purchase of the oil change we did at home). A couple of days later, we were informed that it WAS a sludge problem, and that VW had approved the replacement of the engine!!! It was too easy, but I realized that they knew by 2007 that they had a design problem, even if they weren't quite ready to say it out loud.

A week or so later, the car was ready to be picked up. My husband and I drove to pick it up, and were informed we needed to pay a little over $600. $324 was the towing fee (even though we had been quoted $189 on the phone by the towing company) and $300+ for the Cam Position Sensor that they had originally replaced (which was their first diagnosis before we mentioned the sludge issue). We argued that the CPS is technically part of the engine, and that they knew ahead of time that his car had engine problems. They eventually discounted the cost for the CPS, but we had to pay the $324 towing fee just to get them to release the car to us! I wasn't happy, but we kept justifying in our minds that we had just gotten a brand new engine for $324, so we should just be grateful. After all, my daughter had a car that should now last her a great deal longer... so we thought!

We picked the car up last Saturday 11/10/2007. We drove it home (approximately 65 miles), making sure to never go over the speed limit as the service department had told us to take it easy on the engine for the first 1000 miles. My daughter drove it the first time on Sunday to go on an 20 mile round-trip into town, and then I drove it last night (Tuesday) once again on another 20 mile trip to pick up a pizza!

This morning, my daughter gets up to leave for work, and when she turned out of our driveway... the CHECK ENGINE light came on. It's now, once again, in our driveway unusable while she drives my beat-up '96 Honda Accord to work! I'm not sure where we'll go from here. I hate the thought of dumping the car at a dealership for them to resell, and just give the problem to someone else, but we can't afford to continue making payments on a car that doesn't run!

So, be warned, even if they recall these vehicles and replace the engines... it doesn't mean that they will be problem free. I personally will never buy another VW again, and hope that until they do right by those of us who have made this devastating investment already, I'll be letting everyone I know not to buy one either. We are going back to HONDA, and plan on staying there!

16th Nov 2007, 15:08

For all the people who are having problems with the oil pressure, try finding out what the actual oil weight is to be used in these engines. I had an oil change once and they used 10W40 oil and I had this problem. I then found out the engine requires 15W or 20W oil. I changed the oil again and haven't had the problem since, but this is on a 1994 Jetta.

19th Nov 2007, 15:13

I unfortunately am having the same problems with my VW Passat, 2002. I bought it used in 2005, unfortunately not from a certified VW dealer. I had to have all of the valves replaced in 2005 due to oil sludge.. mind you this was 3 months after owning the car. The dealer put me through the ringer, they wouldn't repair the car because I didn't have the maintenance records from the previous owner. I managed to get the maintenance records and the car was maintained properly. They still would not fix it. After fighting for two weeks, they made the $2500 repairs at their expense. Well two years later, I am having the exact same problem. Only this time, the engine and turbo need to be replaced which will cost $9600!! Now, I will admit that I didnot get my oil changed regularly. But I believe that they have a faulty product, no matter what you do with this car it has engine problems. So now I'm stuck without a car battling with VW again.

25th Nov 2007, 02:45

2003 Passat 1.8T with 35000 miles. I've given it synthetic oil changes every 3K. I've had a host of problems with this vehicle. Fuel pump failure, multiple brake pad problems, brake switch failure, ECU failure, and now the oil sludge problem. I'm trying to get it fixed now, and will look to get rid of this POS. I hate VW, FOREVER.