Volkswagen MK3 turbodiesel "how to" index for VW TDI

Here are DIY repair and maintenance instructions for 1996-1997 VW Passat and 1997-1999 VW Jetta TDI

Did you just get this car?  Review the new owner checklist at 1000q: new owner checklist to see common service areas,  immediate maintenance checks and VW quirks.


VW mk3 ecu hose, vaccum line diagram, and "chip" replacement (every mk3 TDI needs this ecu hose replaced)

Passat or Jetta chirp noise on cold start (replace during timing belt change if not done)

timing belt part 1 - removal  (60,000 mile replacement)
timing belt part 2 - installation
(once you're done removing it :)

water pump replacement

intermediate shaft and seal replacement

Battery part number reference

How to clean/remove the intake manifold (periodic carbon removal is needed)
TDI EGR valve FAQ (exhaust gas recirculation valve FAQ)

Diesel fuel filter change (20,000 miles or as needed)

Engine oil change (10,000 miles or as needed)

Oil cooler/o-ring leak fix and oil pressure sender replacement

Injection pump removal or mk4 ALH injection pump conversion

VW glow plug replacement

Stripped glow plug thread repair

Passat motor mount replacement

Air intake and snow screen service

Fuel temp sensor and Injection Pump top cover seal replacement

Injection pump head or middle gasket reseal

How to repair broken plastic vacuum nipple

Coolant flush and fluid change

Alternator removal and charging system troubleshooting

Starter troubleshooting and replacement

1996 Passat supplementary 5th fuel injector removal (1996 models only)

MAF technical info (mass air flow sensor FAQ and part numbers)

Diagnosing and fixing limp mode (sudden loss of power)

Diagnosing and fixing low power (constant low power and can't rev high)

Adjust fuel injection quantity or hammer mod

Fuel injector nozzle selection and info FAQ
Fuel injector and nozzle removal and upgrade procedure

Fuel tank venting FAQ and vent removal procedure (lets you add a few more gallons of fuel)

Engine coolant heater installation (engine block warmer heater)

Performance turbo upgrade guide for VW TDI (comparison chart for jetta and passat)

Boost or vacuum leak check (air leak in the intake piping, can leave soot or oil in engine bay)

Runaway engine FAQ (rare problem where the engine consumes its own oil and races)


Car Detailing

Car detailing index: wash and wax the proper way, polishing paint, using rubbing compound, clay bar treatment
    Washing/waxing your car - yes, there is a right way
    Polishing your paint/swirl mark removal - enhance paint shine and remove paint spiderwebbing
    Clay bar treatment - make the paint feel like glass
    Sticker removal - safely remove that sticker from the paint
    Headlight polishing - restore the headlight plastic to clear
    Wax stain removal  - remove white stains on the trim
    Paint chip repair
    Small scratch removal



Transmission removal (for clutch/rear main oil seal/transmission seals)

Jetta Passat clutch/flywheel and rear main seal replacement

Manual transmission/differential gear oil change

TDI clutch and flywheel FAQ

How to adjust the shifter to solve hard 1st gear selection (the plastic link often breaks at high miles)


Wheel / tire / gearing calculator

Wheel tire calculator - also shows wheel/tire clearance, offset, and final drive calculator



Strut/shock, springs, and strut mount+bearing replacement front and rear

Passat, golf, jetta front brake pad and rotor job
Jetta, golf rear drum and brake shoe replacement

Passat rear disc brake pad and rotor procedure

Adjusting the parking brake and center console removal

DIY pressure brake and clutch fluid bleeder

Brake/clutch hydraulic fluid change/flush

Brake tips and busting big brake myths

TDI specific big brake upgrade FAQ and spec table/links

    MK3 corrado g54 brake "how to" (+1 upgrade)

    MK3 girling g60 brake "how to" (+2 upgrade)

4 lug to 5 lug wheel conversion



How to use a torque wrench and torque wrench FAQ

Jack points on VW

What the VW part numbers mean and how to read them in ETKA

Adding soundproofing to the TDI and introduction to soundproofing theory

Tips and tricks for the mechanic

Mk3 jetta and passat keyless entry/alarm retrofit

Alarm system troubleshooting

Mk3 keyless remote trunk open capability

Mk3 key FAQ and programming the keyless entry remote

5th gear modification to lower the rpm (on mk3)
-5th gear install by Audi5jim

Adjusting a sticky door handle or latch / repair of the passat jetta door handle

Window regulator replacement and repair

Clearing the sunroof drains to prevent water in the interior

VW/Audi central vacuum locking diagnosis and repair

Passat headlight low beam upgrade with 9006 bulb

Ecode headlights - what are they and how do you use them (for the mk4 generation but the same idea)

Daylight Running Light (DRL) disable

Dashboard camera (dashcam) hardwire installation

Passat headliner removal

Center console removal and how to adjust the parking brake

Sagging door alignment fix

Passat wagon trim removal

Passat door card/panel removal

Jetta door card/panel removal

Fender rolling to fit larger wheels

MK3 vs MK4 generational differences - 3rd vs. 4th gen differences and interchangeable parts

Jetta vs. Passat, differences and interchangeable parts between the mk3 jetta and passat

How to compression test the TDI engine

Making wood blocks to raise the car

OEM VW/Audi wheel gallery, part numbers, and specs

light bulb replacement reference table

Wheel alignment specifications table

Renault 1.6L injection pump rebuild part 1

Renault 1.6L injection pump rebuild part 2

Touch up paint code reference table


More how tos at 1000 answered questions: turbodiesel FAQ and general "how to" index


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