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Let me start off by saying this isn't a case of me putting the wrong fuel in my 2010 Jetta. I fueled up Monday evening at the same Mobil station I have used since I bought my Jetta on 5/29/10. The car ran perfectly until Thursday evening when the car went into limp-home mode. It had no power and it took a couple miles just to get up to 55. I had the car towed to the dealer that night.
I called the dealer the next morning and told the service guy what it was doing. I told him I did notice when I pulled off the road and opened the hood that the cooling fan was not running despite it being 90+ degrees out. I figured maybe a temp sensor may have been malfunctioning and causing the engine to overheat ant trip the computer into limp mode.
Later that morning they called me at work and said I have gasoline in my diesel fuel. Now I know I filled up at the same pump using the correct nozzle that I always do. In fact, I have the receipt showing that I put in over 14.1 gallons of diesel and the car only holds 14.5. This leads to only two possibilities. The gas station somehow got gasoline in their diesel tank or the mechanic has made an incorrect diagnosis. The problem is now the dealer won't cover the repair under warranty because of bad fuel!
There is metal shavings in the fuel system due to the fuel pump failing and they told me the entire fuel system will need to be replaced. They said the bill would probably exceed the $5300.00 they had tabulated so far. Ouch!
Knowing I had not put in the wrong fuel I visited the gas station that afternoon and talked to the manager. The last fuel delivery was Sunday, the day before I filled up and the department og agriculture had been out the prior day and tested their pumps and fuel and they were given the all OK. So leaves the question, where did the gasoline in my diesel fuel come from?
To detect the gas the mechanic did a styrofoam cup test. They put some fuel from the car in a styrofoam cup. Diesel fuel won't harm the styrofoam while gas will melt the styrofoam. This seems like a bit of backyard science that they are denying the warranty claim on! What I am wondering is if some other fluid from the car got into the fuel that also melts styrofoam. coolant perhaps?
Something doesn't add up here but I don't know what it is. Any TDI engine experts on this forum have any ideas?

I love my Jetta and the war it drives so the thought of what has transpired over the last few days is just killing me.

Bryan
 

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The repair bill is normally around $9-10,000. Although it's possible to clean many of those parts, dealers don't do that - they replace parts. If the dealer won't cover it, your insurance will. This is not the first time the dealer has claimed that someone put gas in the car when they didn't. Get ready to stand your ground - you have receipts. Don't know why they wouldn't help you since they would make money off the warranty repair.

IMMEDIATELY get a fuel sample from the car and have it tested by an independent testing facility. There is no reason the dealer will deny this unless they have something to hide. Make it a surprise so they don't add gas to the tank.

This is not the first HPFP fuel pump failure that has caused this problem and not the first dealer to cause this problem. If you do have it repaired, demand that the parts be returned to you.
 

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This isn't the first time they've tried to stick the customer. 2nd on immediately getting a fuel sample. The fuel lines are separate from the coolant so no way that's happening.
 

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From what I've read, the new pumps are slightly different but that could just be dealer blowing smoke to make the customer feel better. Who knows, they may have changed it and fixed the problem too.
 

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There are so many dodgy things about what the dealer did in this case. Since when is putting fuel in a styrofoam cup a scientifically sound method to test for gasoline? Were either the cup or the extraction tool totally clean and sterile when they performed the test. They should have gotten independent verification from certified lab. i wouldn't trust them and whose to say they didn't contaminate the fuel themselves. I agree stand your ground..
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Update: Last weekend I was reading up on biodiesel when I realized something... Styrofoam reacts with biodiesel. I had filled my car at a Mobil station and the diesel they sell is blended with biodiesel. I came across a couple articles about a study being done at Iowa State University where they found disolving styrofoam peanuts in biofuel increased the energy content of the fuel. Here are a couple links...

http://www.physorg.com/news160633641.html
http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn17066-how-to-fuel-a-car-on-waste-plastic.html

So how can a gasoline test using styrofoam be used when there is biodiesel in the gas tank that will disolve the styrofoam??? I posed this question to the service rep at my dealer and he muttered something along the lines of "Volkswagen provides us a test kit, we ran the test and it showed you have gasoline in your fuel." After explaining there is no way the test results would come out correct due to the information I both explained and emailed to him it was abundantly clear that this individual knows zero about diesel fuel and couldn't possibly pass a comprehension test. At that point I asked to speak to his manager and he handed the phone over.
I patiently explained the whole situation to the service manager and told him about the information I had found. The first guy had not shared the information with his boss. I then posed the question to him... "Is Volkswagen's test for gasoline in diesel fuel compatible with biodiesel?" I then pointed out that it is impossible for the test to show no gasoline in the fuel because the biodiesel in the mix will always disolve the foam. The results will always be the same - as if the test were done where pure diesel fuel were mixed with gasoline.
The service manager (obviously being more intelligent than the last guy) saw my point right away. I asked him if he has a Volkswagen technical contact phone number where he could pose the same question and agreed to investigate my question. A short while later he called me back and said he needs to run a different test on the fuel in the car to make sure the biodiesel is within the 5% Biodiesel limit set by Volkswagen. He is currently working on locating some kind of test apparatus so he can perform the test.
This makes me wonder how many other TDI owners have been caught by this combination of biodiesel in their tank and Volkswagen's foam cup test.
I don't know if this means they will come back and cover my repair under warranty but one thing I have learned in this whole situation is no more biodiesel will be going into the tank of my TDI! I was running it mainly for reasons of convenience - the filling station closest to my house where we have always filled up in the past. This also makes me wonder if all the HPFP failures are related to running biodiesel even though Volkswagen says 5% biodiesel is acceptable. I like my Jetta too much to risk the same problem again so I will be finding a filling station that sells pure diesel once my car is repaired. Now I don't know how honest the dealership is and they could have already added gasoline to my fuel to sway the test in their favor. I hope that isn't the case and my most recent conversation with them has me feeling a little better so just maybe I will get lucky. On the other hand they may come back and say the biofuel is outside the allowed limits and I will be back to square one claiming the bill on my insurance.
 

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From what I've seen it looks like a bad design on the pump. The plunger roller in the pump turns sideways and grinds away. Ironically, older FSI engines had bad plunger grinding problems and they thought that a roller would fix it. Now they think the problem with the TDI pump is that there's nothing that prevents the roller from turning sideways. If anything, bio would help add lubricity and help prevent this. Did you get a fuel sample on your own to keep them honest? If not, get down there ASAP!
 

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In Pennsylvania, at least 2% biodiesel is mandated and should be the only fuel available in the state. In the future, the % mandate is going to increase as more biofuel production is on line. If biodiesel is not compatible with the new car, VW will have to end the 50-state certification and I guess we will go back to no diesel VWs in the US.
 

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Yes another TDI bites the dust :( Wow this is happening more and more these days. Over on other TDI forums people are reporting similar issues and bullshit dealerships are giving them for warranty work.
 

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I hope that isn't the case and my most recent conversation with them has me feeling a little better so just maybe I will get lucky. On the other hand they may come back and say the biofuel is outside the allowed limits and I will be back to square one claiming the bill on my insurance.
What was the outcome of this situation?
 
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