Doctor Diesel

Yorkshire Golf ee by gummed up?

Web03I have a January 2010 Golf 1.6 TDI Bluemotion Estate, which has done 61,000 miles. Until recently it has been trouble free, always started first time and always had good performance. Last Friday it started misfiring in traffic at low speed. Since then it has misfired in the traffic at various speeds. Yesterday it was warm after a 24-mile trip, but the stop-start stopped the engine at some traffic lights and then it just didn’t restart. I started it on the key, but it had no power, and it only travelled a couple of yards and stopped again. I started on the key again, moved a yard or so, and died. I repeated the start and it drove away on full power and got me home trouble free. This morning I took it to the garage for a diagnostic test. There was no misfiring on the way, and the computer hasn’t traced any faults. The garage suggests it might be an intermittent EGR fault, but they say it is a 4.5 hour job to change the EGR valve on this car. On Friday of next week, it is booked in at the main dealer to have the cam belt and water pump changed – they told me it’s a VW recommendation to change the cam belt at five years. Should I have the EGR changed then?

I read the recent correspondence in the magazine about winter fuel consumption. I always get poor consumption in winter, but it is particularly bad at the moment. Average fuel consumption (full tank to full tank) is 42.75mpg for a 120-mile round trip, and the rest local driving. For the same period last year, all local driving, the consumption was 44.7mpg. The worst consumption recorded last summer was 52.9mpg. I do recall in the late 1980’s, when I first started reading DC, that you were a bit of a Rottweiler, but nowadays you seem to have mellowed! Hope you can help.
Howard Weaver, Selby

Hello Howard. Firstly, to get that out of the way (senility means that I might just forget to mention it later!), the cam belt change is a correct move, plus the water pump, and presumably also the tensioner pulleys, which should come as part of a cam belt replacement kit. Deterioration is a matter of both time and running hours/miles. You should first ask for a quote for the job though – main dealers have a habit of overpricing (its their hourly labour rates, which are breathtakingly high!), and you might pay only half as much at a good VW Group specialist that knows what it is doing. It’s up to you, but you might save as much as £200. Roger Holmes, 01904 414443, is such a specialist and highly rated by customers.

Now, to your problem. These 1.6 TDI engines do suffer from EGR problems. But often cleaning them, rather than total replacement, will sort things out. Main dealers don’t like doing such things, as they don’t make much profit, and “technicians” are not trained to do it! Why don’t you ring up Roger Holmes and have a chat with them about the cam belt job, and their charges, and also about your engine problems? Please do let me know how you get on.

You should be getting better fuel consumption, and that is probably down to the EGR, or just possibly the MAF unit. When you have the car properly hot some time over the next few days, give the engine a rev up to around 3,000rpm just as you turn the ignition off. This initiates a MAF cleaning cycle that heats the wire filament to red/white hot and burns off any oil deposits that may be degrading the MAFs operation. Suck it and see – nothing lost, but you only want to do this once every few months, otherwise the wire gets too much heat too often. Let me know how you go on.

Ruff Ruff!! Once a Rottweiler, now a cuddly Labrador! With advancing age comes maturity and peace, but I can still get stirred up at times! All the best,
Doc Diesel

P.S. Also you could try John Galley Motors, Pocklington, if you don’t hit it off with Roger Holmes.

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