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I have had sluggish performance on my 2003 Jetta (145K) and was just told by dealer the I need egr cooler cleaned ($834) as well as (they said "less serious" but should be done) new egr valve and MAF ($716). I have looked over the info on this forum (thanks!) about egr but am a bit confused as a non-mechanically inclined diesel owner who does no work on my own. There is the egr valve, intake manifold, cooler discussed. Will I need to do all these things at once? Does taking it in for the egr cleaning include the cooler and the valve? How much time should this take? Would it be better to just replace these than have them cleaned since they take so much time to clean and labor is the big $$. I am hoping to get someone nearby my rural hometown to do this rather than taking to dealer. Any advice appreciated.
 

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You are getting ripped off. Your sluggish performance is probably due to the MAF, the intake could be a contributing factor since a clogged intake will change the air readings at the MAF and restrict air so the engine can't breathe. My suggestion is if they have confirmed a bad MAF, to first replace the MAF and see how it feels.

See here for prices and pictures. As you can see, a new MAF installed (parts+ 15 minutes of labor+tax/misc fees) shouldn't cost over $150-200. Make sure you throughly clean the area around the MAF before screwing the old part to remove dust because the sensor is sensitive to contamination. That's why there's a filter upstream of it.
http://www.myturbodiesel.com/1000q_how_to/a4/maf.htm

If the intake needs cleaning, this is something that your average mechanic could do if they're careful. The EGR cooler doesn't get as clogged as the intake manifold because it's not exposed to oil. The intake manifold gets clogged with soot buildup, the EGR is bolted onto the intake manifold. If they read this it explains everything: http://www.myturbodiesel.com/1000q_how_to/a4/intake_maniremove.htm

It must be removed from the car and care must be taken to avoid letting loose carbon fall into the engine. So when it's removed and cleaned, make sure they get the corners. If they remove the cooler for cleaning, they have to replace lost engine coolant. Make sure they use only VW G12 or Pentosin G12 (generic brand) coolant and distilled water. The green coolant will cause sludging.
 

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2nd, $716 for a new MAF is robbery. Even after the dealer markup, $200 out the door is a little on the high side. $716? They must be including the intake cleaning service with a brand new manifold.,
 

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After you do all of the above, consider replacing the EGR with race pipe. It cost $125.00 and you never ever have to deal with EGR get dirty :D
It worked for me like a charm.
 

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After you do all of the above, consider replacing the EGR with race pipe. It cost $125.00 and you never ever have to deal with EGR get dirty :D
It worked for me like a charm.
if you replace your egr with race pipe. If you chip tune it, yes, otherwise you may get a cel.

pulling the egr and intake is easy, if you have the right tools, what is annoying is cleaning the damn thing, I think the best method of clenaing is to take it to a car wash and blasting out all the gunk from inside.

And pls. stay away from the stealership, they will rip you off and they never do a good job in our TDI cars.
 

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It's $716 for a new EGR and MAF....but $500 for a new EGR, MAF and labor? Wow.....if it's got some clogging just have it cleaned. It'll work the same as a new EGR. The MAF failure is common, if they said it's bad and they tested it, just buy a new one from an online vendor and unscrew it. As they said, make sure to clean the area well first.
 

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Buy the MAF yourself and take the car to a mechanic. Any VW mechanic can take off an intake manifold, wash it, and put it back. Just make sure they wash it throughly or there may be loose chunks inside that can break off.
 

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Thanks - EGR cleaned & pep is back!

Thanks for the advice everyone!!! I found a (mostly) truck shop that did the work and I felt much more informed after reading the posts so I could go to them and not get ripped off. They got me in quickly, told me the MAF tested fine after they cleaned, so only charged for the cleaning, which took about 4 hours as he said it basically had only a pinkies worth of opening left! Replaced some parts. so anyway well under $400 so I felt much better and my little jetta has its punch back! What a difference!
 

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Nice! Don't be afraid to rev the engine because deposits can also form in the turbo. Revving the engine hard burns them out.
 
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