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Hello. I recently bought a 2000 Golf GLS TDI with manual transmission and just over 152K miles. Supposedly has had Rotella synthetic and OEM filters throughout most of its life, and has a few mods such as short shift kit, skidplate, a tuning chip, and VR6 clutch. It currently has the brake, ABS, check engine and the airbag lights on. I have driven it about 1500 miles so far (I have a 100 mile round-trip commute to work, which is why I bought the car), and it seems to be getting around 45-48 mpg. It does, however, seem to be pretty low on power. This is my first TDI, so I'm not exactly sure what to expect, but I have driven a 2000 Dodge Ram with CTD for about 8 years now and even though they are completely different vehicles, I suspect that there are probably multiple things that need to be addressed on this TDI to get it back to its potential. Yesterday, I had a local Autozone read the codes and they said it has a faulty MAF sensor. Sounds like I may need to check the EGR and intake carbon buildup also? Maybe check for boost leaks? As for the brake and ABS lights, would this normally be caused by worn pads and/or rotors? I intend to check and replace these very soon. Not sure what would cause the airbag light, but is there anything I can do to check this myself without having to visit a dealer?

Thanks very much in advance for any guidance you can offer!

Brian
 

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All good suggestions. Autozone can't clear the airbag lights or they aren't supposed to. It's hard to say what the cause is without codes but a common problem is a jiggled connection which trips a code.

http://www.myturbodiesel.com/1000q/multi/low-power-fix-TDI.htm Here's a checklist for finding low power issues. Some of the things require datalogging so that you don't throw money at the car trying to fix things. The best VW-Audi scanner is the ross tech VCDS. It's an vw-audi specific tool and can access the control modules that generic scanners can't. And it also works as a generic obd2-obd3 scanner for almost all other makes of cars.

I know that autozone can't read the MAF values so I don't know what MAF code they would have said was making it bad. However, a bad MAF is a very common cause of low power.
 

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Well, I popped the hood (great idea, huh?!) to look at my MAF and it wasn't even connected! No idea why, but I re-connected it, took it for a spin, and night and day difference!! The little car now has all kinds of power! The engine light did come back on, and I think it went into limp mode after a few minutes. I pulled to the side of the road, turned it off and then re-started it, and it then had all of the power back again. No more time today to mess around with it, but I'm guessing that maybe there is a new code now that the MAF is connected. I tried this morning to go to the purchase page on that Ross Tech site, but it kept giving me an error. I'm going to need to get into that intake and EGR soon to see if they are all carboned-up. Thanks very much for the quick reply and insight, and I'll definitely keep you posted on what I find. There are all kinds of things to fix on this car, including figuring out why the sunroof doesn't work at all. Is it common for the switches to go completely bad? I checked the 20A fuse, and it is not blown.
 
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