2008 Volkswagen Passat Problems

RepairPal has identified the most common problems with the 2008 Volkswagen Passat as reported by actual vehicle owners. We'll tell you what the problem is and what it'll take to fix it.

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15
Known Problems

The digital display portion of the instrument cluster may fail. Our technicians tell us the entire instrument cluster will need to be replaced to correct this concern.

Check Engine Light illumination can be related to a catalytic converter fault. Our technicians tell us a re-flash of the ECM may correct the concern. If not, replacement of the catalytic converter may be required.

An ignition coil or spark plug may fail unexpectedly resulting in an engine misfire and possible illumination of the Check Engine Light. Vehicles equipped with spark plug wires may also develop a misfire caused by a failed spark plug wire.

Engine oil leaks are common from the valve cover gaskets and camshaft chain tensioner gasket.

A problem with the torque converter can cause the Check Engine Light to illuminate.

The water pump may fail resulting in engine overheating and possible timing belt damage. Overheating and/or timing belt failure can result in very expensive engine repairs. As a precaution, it is recommended to inspect the timing belt and water pump at regular intervals.

Premature wear in various multi-link suspension components can cause noises that are difficult to diagnose. Worn suspension parts can also cause uneven tire wear and create steering alignment problems.

The anti-lock brake system (ABS) control module may fail causing the ABS light to illuminate. Failed modules should be replaced to restore ABS operation.

Our technicians recommend having the constant velocity (CV) boots and CV joints inspected at each service. Servicing torn CV boots early can prevent the need to replace the CV half shaft or CV joint.

Clogged sunroof drains can allow water to enter the interior and accumulate under the carpet where various control modules are mounted. Over time, the accumulated moisture can damage the control modules.

One or both head lights may not work due to premature head light bulb burnout and/or bulb harness failure. Care should be taken to inspect the head light harness connector for damage when replacing bulbs. Damaged connectors should be replaced.

Condensation may develop in the heater case which can cause a musty odor from the heating, ventilation and AC (HVAC) system.  Our technicians tell us a cleaner is available for the heater case. Also, the drain system should be checked for debris.

Clogged drains can allow rainwater to accumulate in the plenum tray (at the base of the windshield). The water may leak into the vehicle's interior, brake booster, or electrical components, which can lead to major problems. Our technicians recommend keeping the tray clear of leaves, pine needles, and other debris.

The parking brake may not operate correctly. The correction involves addressing any stored anti-lock brake system (ABS) fault codes, replacing the rear brake pads if required, and following the basic settings procedure as per the scan tool. Our technicians tell us these procedures must be performed in the correct order for the parking brake to function correctly.

Erratic turn signal operation can be a result of a failing turn signal flasher relay which will require replacement.