Volkswagen diesel ALH TDI no start

Steven Mechanic Spokane, Washington Posted   Latest  
Question
Driveability
2002 Volkswagen Golf GLS 1.9L (ALH) 4-spd (01M)—9BWGP61J524054934
Cranks - No Start

Background story: Customer was driving vehicle and hit the oil pan and broke it and oil came out. The customer continued driving it for a while after it was hit (he probably didn't realize the pan was broken until the oil warning came on). Then the vehicle was taken to a repair shop and a new oil pan was installed with new oil and the engine would crank but not start. Now the car is at our shop to find out why it won't start.

There are a few common failures for a no start on this engine, but since none of my testing was producing conclusive results, I began testing just about everything, and I will list the test results here...

  • Compression test: Cylinder 1, 19Bar; Cylinder 4, 22Bar (Min. spec. 19Bar)
  • Starting fluid: Engine starts and runs on starting fluid, but dies without it.
  • Injection pump: Pulls 15"Hg vacuum, can't find spec but seems good.
  • Replaced fuel filter: No change.
  • Bleed air from injection pump and lines: No change. Verified fuel is being pumped out to the injectors.
  • Injection pump timing and cam timing: Verified 3 times with the special tools.
  • Intake flap valve (throttle body valve): Moves freely, not stuck closed.
  • Fuel cut solenoid: Has power when cranking and can hear it click open.
  • Intake manifold carbon: Has some, but intake is not plugged.
  • EGR valve: There was a fault code for excess EGR flow, but the valve is working properly when actuated, and it is not sticking open. That was the only fault code stored in the ECM.
  • Glow plugs: No fault codes, all 4 ohm test good and draw the same current, but two of them are not being activated by the glow plug controller/relay for some reason (haven't checked into that yet). Vehicle is in a heated shop, so not as critical for starting.
  • Diesel fuel: Looks clean and smells fine. Tried feeding new diesel from a jug into injection pump (including bleeding procedure) and still no start.
  • Power supply relay for engine: Okay.
  • Modulating Piston Displacement Sensor: Ohm test good according to SI
  • Quantity Adjuster: Ohm test good according to SI
  • Needle Lift Sensor: Ohm test good according to SI. Scope waveform is just "noise". Can't see any signal, but from what I have read, the engine will start if this sensor is bad. Also, the wiring for this sensor has been cut and spliced as if someone installed a used one in the past.
  • Installed used injection pump (supposedly a good used pump): Still no start. Used pump is drawing in fuel, and fuel is being pumped out to the injectors.
  • CKP waveform: Looks similar to a known good example I found. The file is at work. I'll have to post it up later if someone wants to see it.

So, any ideas where to go at this point? Does the oil pan damage and repair have anything to do with this? I'm wondering if the published minimum spec for compression is not accurate. But also, we are doing the compression check on a cold engine, and the directions are to do it with a warm engine, so we would likely get higher compression test results if the engine were warm. What about that used pump? Maybe it isn't any good either?

If you have any suggestions or input, I'd love to hear it. Thanks for reading.

0
Robert Diagnostician
Fair Oaks, California
Robert Default
 

Without two glow plugs working, I would expect a no start or hard start. Starting fluid would fire easier and could over come the lack of glow plugs. I would expect it to stay running after you got it to fire though. Did you have air in the fuel system when you tried starting it with starting fluid? I don't know what order you did your tests and if you introduced other problems like air in fuel…

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Default
 

Hello Robert, From what I have read, the glow plug system isn't turned on above a certain temperature. The air had been bled from the fuel system when we had it running on starting fluid.

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Hans Diagnostician
Salt Lake City, Utah
Hans Default
 

I always make sure all the injectors are bled and diesel is spitting out when the nuts on the injectors are loose. Even if it just dribbles out, it’s not enough. glow plugs have no bearing on starting above 50F or so, so no issue there. the egr fault may have been caused by the maf, you could try unplugging it and see if it starts then? these engines are very robust and really it takes a lot…

+1 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Default
 

Hello Hans, We have bled the air out of the system all the way to the injector line nuts, and it does spray out, not just a dribble. Tried starting it with MAF unplugged, but no go. I've been searching all the vw tdi forums online and they all mention the same common "no start" fixes. This is a tough one, or we are just missing something very basic. Thanks.

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
David Owner/Technician
St. Albert, Alberta
David Default
 

I think the key is you found it starts with a sniff of ether but won't keep running. Like Robert, those glow plugs are an issue, but I am with Hans on this one, where is the fuel?

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Evgeni Mechanic
Sofia, Bulgaria
Evgeni Default
 

Any fault codes in the TCM or the immo?

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Default
 

Hello Evgeni, I checked the Instrument Cluster for immobilization faults and there weren't any faults of any kind in that module. Also checked the scan data in that module, and all of the immobilizer type of data PIDs have a value of "1" which I assume means Okay, and I assume if they had a "0" that would be Not Okay, but I haven't verified that yet.

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Michael Owner/Technician
Montague, New Jersey
Michael Default
   

- Did you backfill the fuel filter with diesel or diesel purge? - Are you receiving a good shot from the injector pump at the injectors? It should go at least 4" in the air with the lines cracked - Most used pumps are garbage. However, have you attempted to advance the pump timing by loosening the 3 screws? A little movement at a time is best. - You say main relay 109 is "OK". Is it old style…

+1 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Default
 

Hello Michael, Here are the answers to your questions... - Did you backfill the fuel filter with diesel or diesel purge? Yes. - Are you receiving a good shot from the injector pump at the injectors? It should go at least 4" in the air with the lines cracked. Yes, at least 4". - Most used pumps are garbage. However, have you attempted to advance the pump timing by loosening the 3 screws? A…

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Mike Technician
Salina, Kansas
Mike Default
 

Were any wires under the car unpluged , if runs off starting fluid can u check pis out of fuel pump . Is the fuel pump working power to it , good ground Power to fuel pump wire able to handle the load , can you place a test light in place of fuel pump see if have power when cranking motor and stays on when running

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Hans Diagnostician
Salt Lake City, Utah
Hans Default
 

No lift pump on these, the VE pump just sucks it out of the fuel tank

+1 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Domenic Owner/Technician
Great Barraington, Massachusetts
Domenic Default
   

On cars with veggie oil or owners filling out of cans I often have seen restrictions in the pick up. There is almost an orifice type tube in the tank pick up. checking the fuel lines from tank to filter inlet with a vacuum gauge will show adequate flow though. To prove a point and to guarantee fuel flow I will usually put a clear tube from a fuel can straight to VE pump and try to get started…

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Default
 

Hello Domenic, We are using a clear hose at the inlet of the pump, and I tried new diesel fuel from a jug. The pump is able to draw in the fuel on it's own and the air bubbles go away. I've also bled it by having someone loosen the line nuts at the injectors until fuel sprays out. I have also bled it by using vacuum at the outlet of the pump and sucking fuel through the pump until no air…

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Craig Technical Support Specialist
Chicago, Illinois
Craig Default
 

Hello Steven, I am not familiar with this engine but is it possible that the oil pressure sensor is stuck? I am not sure if the engine controller needs to see oil pressure to allow starting. Also do you have a way to get an in cylinder compression pattern? It might show something mechanical that could be overlooked with a gauge test alone. Craig

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Default
 

Hello Craig, I considered the oil pressure sender as a possibility, but when researching this problem, I see no mention of an oil pressure sender causing a no start. I could look into this further. Also, we do have an in-cylinder pressure tester, but we have not considered that yet because the vehicle runs on starting fluid and the cam and pump are in time when installing the timing tools…

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Hans Diagnostician
Salt Lake City, Utah
Hans Default
 

There is no oil pressure safety on these. They could run with no oil, until the don’t! Steven I actually do have known good in cylinder captures of an ALH. cranking and running. I don’t remember if I’ve uploaded it in here yet, but I know they are on the Facebook waveform exchange group, and the diesel lab scope group.

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Craig Technical Support Specialist
Chicago, Illinois
Craig Default
 

Also have you tried powering all 4 glow plugs manually then attempting to start the motor?

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Default
 

Hello Craig, Have not tried that yet. Supposedly the glow plug system isn't used or needed above a certain temperature, but maybe it could help get it started for us. I'll consider giving that a try when I get back to work.

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Michael Mechanic
Montgomery, Texas
Michael Default
 

No low oil pressure code? Did customer shutdown or ecm? Does engine smoke at all while cranking? How was engine performance before oil pan issue? Slow starting or fire right up?

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Default
 

Hello Michael, No oil pressure fault codes in the instrument cluster. I don't know the whole story of when or how the engine shutdown. I can ask when I get back to work. Can't remember if engine smokes while cranking. I've had an exhaust hose on it. Also, I don't have info about how it started or ran before the oil pan incident. Good questions to ask. I'll see if I can find out some of this…

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Michael Mobile Technician
Clinton, Utah
Michael Default
 

I personally had one of these that the fuel sender assembly got a restriction. The HP pump could not pull enough fuel up through the restriction to start. You could try feeding fuel manually right at the HP pump to see if it will start. Ours would become a no start after sitting a couple of days. Good Luck!

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Default
 

Hello Michael, I have tried new fuel from a jug at the inlet to the pump (including bleeding procedure). Still no go. Thanks.

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Ryan Owner/Technician
Prince George, British Columbia
Ryan Default
   

Hello Steven, As others have stated, the glow plug system on an ALH does not activate for starting above 46°F. They do after the engine starts but that is not important at this point. Your compression spec is low. 19 to 22 bar is roughly 275 to 319 psi. Did your spec go with a limited number of revolutions? The spec I found is 25 to 31 bar or 362 to 449 psi, which is normal for a direct…

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Default
 

The specs I found for compression are from Alldata. I believe 25-31 Bar is the spec for a new engine, and the spec for "Wear Limit" is 19 Bar, and maximum difference between cylinders is 5 Bar. I am wondering though if the compression is too low because it is at the wear limit, or maybe the wear limit spec is not accurate. Not sure about smoke out tailpipe when cranking. What should I be looking…

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Craig Technical Support Specialist
Chicago, Illinois
Craig Default
 

Hello again Steven, I am actually thinking compression loss is going to be the problem with ether being easier to detonate with lower compression. And with running compression being about half of cranking its possible we don't have enough heat from compression to ignite the heavier ended diesel fuel. I think a wet compression test may be in order, I would try this using a remote starter cranking…

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Dmitriy Analyst
Toronto, Ontario
Dmitriy Default
 

Isn‘t “running compression is about half of cranking” a rule of thumb only for gasoline engines?

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Hans Diagnostician
Salt Lake City, Utah
Hans Default
 

Known good ALH in cylinder. Top is running, bottom is cranking

+1 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Dmitriy Analyst
Toronto, Ontario
Dmitriy Default
 

Hans, this running compression waveform is rather strange... so different from what Pico showed in one of its YouTube videos, at 800rpm: diag​.​net/file/f57kcpabm… ​ Any ideas? Perhaps, there is a need for a separate thread describing expected diesel in-cylinder waveforms?

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Craig Technical Support Specialist
Chicago, Illinois
Craig Default
 

I wonder what the exact conditions were when that pattern was taken, Pico states the injector should be disabled during testing or the pressure readings will be incorrect, it appears this cylinder has no obvious valve events compared to this one you presented. Could this be due to a lack of intake manifold vacuum?

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Hans Diagnostician
Salt Lake City, Utah
Hans Default
 

I opened the fuel line on the pump so no fuel would be added and make it a dead hole. Mechanical injectors on these. And yes, no intake vacuum because no throttle body. only has an anti shudder flap which closes after the key is turned off to prevent dieseling or run-on.

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Hans Diagnostician
Salt Lake City, Utah
Hans Default
 

I agree, it wasn’t what I was expecting to see! There isn’t a lot of information about it, especially in USA. I had opened the fuel line for that cylinder to prevent the injector from opening, but it’s possible that it still had some fuel making it through?

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Craig Technical Support Specialist
Chicago, Illinois
Craig Default
   

Good evening Dmitriy, that's an outstanding question! I will have to go do some research, now the next question, does it matter if it is throttled or not? With both being air pumps I am thinking that things should be similar, I apologize to all if I am incorrect in my assumption. Craig After looking at the patterns just posted I stand corrected, it appears the pressure running and cranking…

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
David Owner/Technician
St. Albert, Alberta
David Default
 

Hi guys, keep in mind with no throttle butterfly valve there is very little drop in cylinder pressure when the piston pulls down on intake, unlike the gas engine.

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Ryan Owner/Technician
Prince George, British Columbia
Ryan Default
 

Reguardless of the spec 360 psi is generally the minimum for most high speed diesels. An indirect injected engine will not start below this level while a direct injected one will with a starting aid. As far as the smoke goes, any smoke would be a sign the system is injecting fuel obviously. Bluish white or black smoke would be expected at this point. Black smoke may indicate an engine breathing…

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Pam Owner/Technician
Tampa, Florida
Pam Default
 

Vehicle in motion when accident occurred. Accident consisted of an object striking the oil pan; damaging it; vehicle came to a stop. Then, another shop replaced the pan; now no start. Need to retrace object scraping undercarriage; tech’s R&R pan path-procedures for power, ground (and, ground strap) Integrities - including the security trigger, as pan install tech may have disconnected power…

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Default
 

Hello Pam, Very good ideas. I did have a look at the oil pan repair, but maybe not a close enough inspection. I'm gonna have to inspect it closer when I get back to work. Thanks.

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Raymond Owner/Technician
Binghamton, New York
Raymond Default
 

There is a wire splice in the drivers side foot well under the carpet where are your left heel sets. it usually corrodes from standing moisture, A hard enough hit would have broken a wire in half.(security)

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Default
 

Hello Raymond, I haven't had any indications of a security issue, but it really could be anything at this point, so thanks for the tip. I'll keep it in mind.

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Ronald Technical Support Specialist
Trail, British Columbia
Ronald Default
 

The first one of these that we got at our shop was a very similar situation. I would suspect engine was driven to failure. The cam lobes wipe through the lifters quite quickly from low oil supply. Low compression and air supply into engine. Pull the valve cover and have a look. Also pull off air intake at manifold in case pipes /plumbing blocked with oil or something .

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Default
 

Hello Ronald, That's not a bad idea to check for worn out cam lobes from the lack of oil supply. An in-cylinder compression waveform might show something, or removing the valve cover as you suggest. I have already inspected the intake manifold. It has some carbon build up, but does not look plugged.

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Michael Owner/Technician
Montague, New Jersey
Michael Default
 

That's certainly possible. I thought Steven had the Valve cover off to check timing. I guess not.

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
David Owner/Technician
St. Albert, Alberta
David Default
 

I must confess, I do not understand some of these replies. Assuming your tests are as you say, you have an injection issue. Pump or injectors or fuel quality? You said you get some fuel out of the injectors during cranking, just not sure how much, that lets out security. You said it runs with some ether. That lets out the poor compression, bad timing, bad wire or destroyed cam ideas.

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Default
 

Hello David, I have fuel spray at the injector line nuts, but can't see if the injectors themselves have fuel coming out. The glow plugs were wet when I removed them, but I suppose it could be from engine oil getting past the rings or from diesel fuel from the injectors. Just because it starts and runs on ether doesn't mean there is enough compression to get the diesel fuel to ignite. At least…

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Domenic Owner/Technician
Great Barraington, Massachusetts
Domenic Default
 

What are your cranking revolutions like.. nice and fast? Lazy starters cause a slow crank and start issues. just another random thought from the old tdi archives...

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Default
 

Cranking sounds nice and fast. I keep a battery maintainer on it, and when cranking I have a jump pack on it. I have only checked the cranking speed one time with the scan data, but the update rate on the data is very slow. I believe it was like 290rpms, but I don't think I had the battery all the way charged up at that time. I know that it is recommended to have 300rpms or more while cranking…

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Delay
 

Thanks for all the replies so far. I don't go back to work until Jan. 2nd, so it will be a while until I can update with more testing information. Also, this one might go on the back burner if the boss needs me to get other jobs done, so I'm not in control of that part. I'll do my best to keep you informed. Happy Holidays everyone.

0 Delay Ð Bounty Awarded
Hans Diagnostician
Salt Lake City, Utah
Hans Default
 

I’ll be back to work then too and will have access to all my stuff, and my known good engine.

+1 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Raymond Owner/Technician
Binghamton, New York
Raymond Default
 

Don’t stray too far from the beaten path!!! It runs on ether that eliminates almost all mechanical issues.

+1 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Michael Owner/Technician
Montague, New Jersey
Michael Default
 

Yes and no. I just had a BRM in here which started on ether but wouldn't run otherwise. Turned out it had jumped time because the timing belt was shot. I would have sworn it was fuel related but it was mechanical.

+1 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Michael Mechanic
Montgomery, Texas
Michael Default
 

A tooth out of time would explain a lot... lower compression & diesel, no combustion but would start run on ether... have good injection pressure but no start... If this is the case I would expect to see a good bit of white/gray/brown smoke during cranking....and I would expect to probably see no more than 2 cogs off time

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Evgeni Mechanic
Sofia, Bulgaria
Evgeni Default
 

This engine runs with no problem with no ecu on board ( with immo off) only with 12v on the fuel shut off valve....its posible this engine is out of timing becouse of non oil condition

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Richard Mechanic
Brookhaven, Georgia
Richard Default
 

Timing I believe is off. No more or less. It shouldn't need much in the glow plug thing in shop temperatures. Starting on induced fluid bypasses timing perfection. So, without much more ado I would be drilling down on the timing since it seems you likely have fuel pressure. I am not talking just marks on a gear but actual injection timing with all the other little bastards being there when they…

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Default
 

Hello Richard, I was trying to come up with a way to check the injection timing other than installing the timing tools. I tried a homemade piezo sensor attached to one of the fuel lines while cranking, but there was no noticeable "spike" signal, just a lot of noise. The Needle Lift Sensor at injector #3 also had noise only. Maybe the injectors aren't opening, or maybe I'm not scoping it…

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
David Owner/Technician
St. Albert, Alberta
David Default
 

There is no good way to set the timing on this one without the tools and covers off. Impulse checks on the injector line are not very accurate at all and is best done with a running engine. You said you used the timing tools in the first place so I assume the cam timing is good if you had the flywheel at TDC on the correct mark and the gear was tightened properly. I say that because it is easy…

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Hans Diagnostician
Salt Lake City, Utah
Hans Default
 

I’ll see if I can get a capture of the peizo or needle lift sensor on mine tomorrow. im not sure how busy I’ll be, but I have checked CR tdis with a piezo and it had a definite spike on the fuel rail

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Update
 

Quick update here: There is some white-ish smoke out the exhaust while cranking and it smells kind of like diesel fuel, so I think fuel is being injected. Tried adjusting pump timing at the pulley by loosening the 3 bolts and rotating pump position. It was more towards the advanced side to start with, so I tried all the way advanced, then all the way retarded, then tried in the center of the…

0 Update Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Update
 

Another update: I figured out a way to hook up a pressure transducer, but the shop here only has a 300psi transducer, which is cutting it close. Tried supplying constant power to all 4 glow plugs to see if it would help at all, but didn't do anything to help it start. Inspected underside of vehicle again, but don't see anything that stands out as broken or missing. The boss was thinking that…

0 Update Ð Bounty Awarded
Hans Diagnostician
Salt Lake City, Utah
Hans Default
 

I've never had a problem with starting a car after replacing the belt. Which special tools are you using? I set the flywheel to the tdc mark in the little window, pull the vacuum pump to make sure the slot in the cam is half way in the head and in the valve cover (there is a special tool that locks it in place. The factory tool requires the valve cover to be off to use), and I use the pin in the…

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Default
 

Yes, that is how I have checked and set the timing a couple times now. Flywheel/flexplate mark in the window at the correct place, then take vacuum pump off and put lock plate tool in the cam slot. I am using an aftermarket timing tool. We might have an OE version in the shop somewhere. Finally, put the pin in the pump. There is only one place for this pin to slide all the way in, and I am in…

+1 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
David Owner/Technician
St. Albert, Alberta
David Default
 

If it is not fuel or timing, it could easily be not enough air. If you have a blocked exhaust or if the turbo is stuck or ???

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Hans Diagnostician
Salt Lake City, Utah
Hans Default
 

Is this automatic? And was an automatic pump put back on? The automatic pumps have an 11mm head (with smaller injectors) to run more pressure for emissions. The manual cars had a 10mm head (with larger injectors). The VW part number for the automatic pump is …J and the Bosch number ends in 414. If it's automatic with a manual pump, that could be an issue, but not sure if it would give…

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Default
 

It has an automatic transmission. The pump I took off is #… J and the used pump that is on it now is #… D. I can't tell which number is the Bosch number but there is a number on the pump we took off that has 414 in it, and on the used pump in this same place is 404. A little busy on several things right now. I'll get back to this later. Thanks.

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Default
 

I just looked up the part #'s in the VW catalog, and the pump we installed, that ends with D, is for a manual transmission car. Thanks for the heads up on this! Not sure it matters for starting, but now we know to get the correct pump.

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Michael Owner/Technician
Montague, New Jersey
Michael Default
 

Don't take the flywheel mark for granted. If this has an aftermarket clutch, the mark may be in the wrong place. Do this instead. With the outer crank pulley off, turn the timing belt crank pulley until the small protrusion is in the 7:30 range. At that point, the bolt hole for the allen bolts on the outer crank pulley should roughly be in the 12, 3, 6 and 9 o'clock positions. That's TDC. If…

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Richard Mechanic
Brookhaven, Georgia
Richard Default
 

Timing tools in place. ALL of them. Cam gear loose before locking down. Wow. what more can I say? An ALH is a bastard to start if it is a few degrees off. Starts like a normal small dog in hot weather and starts like an uninterested companion and then runs like a sick puppy passing a peach pit in the cold for a few minutes. A couple more degrees colder and it acts like a bad ex wife or a pissed…

+1 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Update
 

Took valve cover off and the cam lobes for cylinder one are pointing down instead of up. Looks like the cam is 180 degrees off. Of course we were not told anything about someone messing with this before we got it, but I guess we should know better than to trust the story we are told. Also, the cam timing tool slides into place no matter if it is 180 off. The slot in the cam for the lock tool…

0 Update Ð Bounty Awarded
Domenic Owner/Technician
Great Barraington, Massachusetts
Domenic Default
 

You got a bad deal there. The cam tool should it go in 180 off either from my memory- it’s been awhile admittedly cos all those cars are rotted out. But either way the lobes should be pointed up!

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Default
 

I just got the cam back to correct position and the cam locking tool that I am using is aftermarket. I was able to install it either way. I do notice that it fits easier with the cam in the correct position, and it was a tight fit the other way around but I was still able to install the bolts by hand with the cam 180 out. The offset in the cam slot is very very slight, so if you use an…

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
David Owner/Technician
St. Albert, Alberta
David Default
 

The tool we have is a tight fit, have to tap it with wood, and use of a couple skinny feeler gauges to centre it tightly is necessary. I think VW has always done offset machining?

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Default
 

Originally I just slapped the tool in there. The bolts went in by hand. A little tight but went in. Now with it in the correct position, this aftermarket tool just slips right in and has some freeplay, so it is obviously not machined very accurately. I had no reason to suspect cam timing at first because the story was that an oil pan was installed and then it was a no start and they wanted to…

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
David Owner/Technician
St. Albert, Alberta
David Default
 

This is one of our biggest issues in diagnostics. How many times has the customer told us, after the fix, something like: Oh, I didn't mention that because I could not see how it mattered.

0 Default Ð Bounty Awarded
Steven Mechanic
Spokane, Washington
Steven Resolution
 

This is the conclusion of this diagnosis. The camshaft timing was fixed and the vehicle reassembled and it started up. Thanks to everyone who offered their help. Things to learn from this are to be cautious of aftermarket timing tools and sometimes you have to disregard the background story and diagnose from scratch. It would also be good to develop a way to verify injection timing on this…

0 Resolution Ð Bounty Awarded