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Volkswagen Jetta Problems

RepairPal has identified the most common problems with the Volkswagen Jetta based on complaints from actual vehicle owners. We'll tell you what the problem is and what it'll take to fix it.

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Known Problems

Electrical issues that are difficult to diagnose—and sometimes intermittent—are typically due to ground wiring issues. The most troublesome ground locations are under the battery or at the engine.

Due to an ignition component and/or engine coolant temperature sensor failure, the Check Engine Light may illuminate. Replacement of the failed component will be necessary to correct this concern.

One or more power windows may fail. Our technicians tell us this is commonly due to a failed window regulator which will require replacement.

Shifting issues due to internal problems in high mileage automatic transmissions can be difficult to resolve without transmission replacement.

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.

Reverse gear failures and noise in the manual transmission models are common.

The driver door wiring loom cracks and degrades with time due to weathering and frequent opening and closing of the door. This problem affects the normal operation of all electronic components of the door including, but not limited to:

  • Electric Windows
  • Electric Door Locks
  • Trunk Release
  • Fuel Filler Door Release
  • Speakers
  • Interior Lights Stay On at All Times
  • Keyless Locks
  • Power Side Mirrors
  • Alarm
  • The correction for this issue is to replace the driver side door wiring harness. For security purposes, the doors can be locked with the key. The interior lights should be shut of manually, and through the multi function display in the gauge cluster to prevent battery drain.

    Condensation in the heater case may cause a musty odor from the heating, ventilation and AC (HVAC) system after sitting for two hours or more. Our technicians tell us that a cleaner is available for the heater case and the drain system should be checked for debris.

    To ensure longevity of the engine, our technicians recommend to follow the maintenance schedule for the timing belt.

    The mass air flow (MAF) sensor may fail, resulting in drivability issues and/or illumination of the Check Engine Light.

    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.

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

    The 2006-2016 Jetta uses FSI and TSI direct injection engine. These engines are subject to carbon buildup in the intake system which can cause power loss, OBD codes and a check engine light, and a rough idle. In normal engines, the engine is cleaned by the gasoline flowing through the injectors and into the intake system, however, since the Jetta uses direct injection, gasoline does not flow through common carbon buildup areas. 

    Possible trouble codes include: P0300P0301P0302P0303P0304.

    The solution is to remove the intake manifold and professionally clean the intake manifold, intake ports on the cylinder head, and the intake valves. This may need to be done in as few as 20,000 miles.