2012 Volkswagen Passat DSG Oil filter

Tiny
WOMIOTEK
  • MEMBER
  • 2012 VOLKSWAGEN PASSAT
  • TURBO
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 60,000 MILES
I have a 2012 Passat TDI. I had my 40K service done at another shop other than the Volkswagen dealer. Today I took my car in for other problems (water pump) they said while looking at the car that the DSG filter is cracked and was most likely cracked by the repair shop that did my 40K service. That was 22K miles ago. The other shop that did the service said there is no way and it would have blew up the engine by now if oil was leaking for 22K miles. It's going to cost about $451. What is your thought. I know I'm not responsible and should not have to pay for it. Don't know what to do. Also my car only has 60K miles on it. The water pump is covered under a 5 year warranty, however they are saying to go ahead and change the timing belt since they are in there, which would cost $670. Seems early to fix the timing belt and with all of the controversy with VW TDI not sure if it's worth it. &670 seems like a lot for the timing belt also.
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Thursday, December 3rd, 2015 AT 3:20 PM

11 Replies

Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
I have to start with a question. When you say DSG filter, are you referring to the transmission filter? Was it leaking? If you are referring to the engine oil filter, I would think you had it serviced within the last 22k miles.

As far as the timing belt, it would be a good idea to replace it because it should save you the labor cost. However, the timing belt is removed to replace the water pump. Therefore, you should only have to pay for the belt and not labor.
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Thursday, December 3rd, 2015 AT 6:02 PM
Tiny
CARADIODOC
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No, you shouldn't have to pay. Everyone is looking for someone else to blame and to pick up the tab. The first shop is right. An oil leak would have been noticed right away if they caused it. You didn't say anything about oil on the ground where you park or that you even bothered to check the oil level periodically and found it to be low. Therefore, I'd have to assume the leak developed later, or that it is small enough to be insignificant except to the person trying to sell you a service. Some mechanics love to find fault with other mechanics, and you get stuck in the middle.

The 40k service, and any others that are recommended, are designed to make money for the dealer. Many of the services on those lists aren't always needed, or they are of little value. Their biggest benefit is in proving for future warranty purposes that you followed the manufacturer's recommendations. You lost that benefit when you went to another shop. That suggests to me you want to take care of your car but you don't really understand why you should let the dealer perform the procedures. If you're working with a reputable dealership, they will accept receipts from other shops as proof you did everything required to keep the warranty in effect. If you have a less-reputable dealership, they may try to deny future warranty claims or at the very least will not be your advocate, as they should be. You may need to fight your own battle with the manufacturer. When it comes to customer-friendly business practices, Hyundai, Toyota, and Chrysler are at the top of the list. BMW and GM are at the bottom. VW is somewhere in between, but it all depends on who you're asking. My experience is you better keep the dealer on your good side because you'll need their help later.

As for why you think you aren't responsible for repairs to your car, you're going to have to provide some reason that someone else is to blame. The rest of us have to pay for things that break from time to time. If you think a part has been cracked for the last 22,000 miles, it obviously hasn't been causing a problem, so I guess you can ignore it now too. There. I just saved you $451.00. A better suggestion is to have the questionable part inspected at a third shop for an impartial opinion. In this case it's okay to specify what you want looked at, but I would leave the names of the shops out of the conversation. Opinions can be swayed based on whether the various shops are bitter enemies or buddies.

The timing belt is a different story. VW has had problems with some of their water pumps that used plastic impellers that would crack and slip. I don't know if that still applies to your year and model. You didn't list the engine size, so I can't say for sure, but if your water pump is driven by the timing belt, it would be foolish to not replace the belt when the water pump is replaced. Both jobs are very involved and take a long time. The timing belt has to be partially removed to replace the water pump, so the additional cost should be for the belt itself and perhaps an additional hour of labor. VWs can be relatively difficult to work on, so I could believe $670.00 for both parts, but not if the water pump is under warranty.

Almost all shops bill their labor times according to a "flat rate" guide. That spells out the exact number of hours for every procedure on every car model, year, and engine size. It also has provisions to add tenths of an hour for additional, but related work, and to subtract some time when combining related procedures. As a typical example, it might call for 3.5 hours to replace the water pump, or 3.0 hours to replace the timing belt, but if both jobs were being done at the same time, you'd start with the 3.5 hours for the water pump, then "add.8 hours" for the belt. In this case the appropriate charge would be 4.3 hours with the manufacturer paying the 3.5 hours and you paying the rest. You're going to have to find out, then tell me, why they want you to pay $670.00 for what appears to be something the manufacturer is going to be paying for.

As a side note, the majority of import engines are of the "interference" design. That means if the timing belt breaks or even just jumps a few teeth, the open valves will be hit and bent by the pistons as they coast to a stop. That turns an expensive service into a REAL expensive major engine repair. Your mechanic would not be doing you any favors by not suggesting the timing belt be replaced. In the '80s Honda recommended replacing the timing belt at every 75,000 miles, ... And they typically broke at 65,000 miles. That made for a real lot of angry car owners who had to pay for those expensive repairs. You should thank your mechanic for wanting to look out for your best interest in the long run. That timing belt should be considered a maintenance cost, just like buying gas and oil, and not as an unexpected repair cost.

I don't know what VW recommends for your engine's timing belt replacement interval, but if you have an interference engine, I'd be real nervous driving any further than I'm willing to walk back home if I had exceeded that mileage. Some manufacturers have recommended intervals as high as 150,000 miles, but I wouldn't trust that for any engine.

If you do not have an interference engine, you'll still be sitting on the side of the road if the timing belt breaks, but the repair simply involves replacing it, with no other engine work needed. The clinker is though, if that's another 3.5 hour job, wouldn't it have been nice if it had been replaced when the water pump was replaced?
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Thursday, December 3rd, 2015 AT 6:18 PM
Tiny
CARADIODOC
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Hi Jacobandnickolas. Sorry for butting in. I was typing for too long.
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Thursday, December 3rd, 2015 AT 6:45 PM
Tiny
WOMIOTEK
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Yes, the transmission filter.
I understand it makes sense to replace the timing belt when the water pump is changed. Just reluctant with the tdi emission controversy. Not sure I want to put money into a car that's basically worth nothing now.
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Thursday, December 3rd, 2015 AT 7:06 PM
Tiny
CARADIODOC
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I'm pretty sure they're going to come up with a fix at no cost to you. From the very little I've heard, it was suggested, since there's always a trade-off, the reduced emissions might come with reduced power. By "reduced power", that usually means too little reduction to notice with normal everyday driving.
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Thursday, December 3rd, 2015 AT 7:28 PM
Tiny
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Yes, I am definitely regretting going to a service center other than VW. I did it to save $ and called the dealer and my extended warranty company to make sure it wouldn't void my warranty which it doesn't as long as I have the receipt. I actually trust the other repair center over VW and they do stand behind their service. They were very cooperative with this situation and spoke with VW. Now VW is backing down on this "leak" saying maybe I don't really need to address it right away. Oil has not been leaking at all that I have noticed. However with all that said, if I had the 40k service done at VW they said they would have taken responsibility for it. I guess it wasn't worth saving a few bucks.
Engine size is a 4 cylinder 2.0
VW recommends replacing timing belt at 150,000 miles. They are now saying it will cost around $540 just for the timing belt and other parts that get replaced with it.
I have had nothing but problems with this car. The first year I bought it(brand new) the fuel pump went out.
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Thursday, December 3rd, 2015 AT 7:50 PM
Tiny
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The engine is an interference engine in this car.
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Thursday, December 3rd, 2015 AT 8:17 PM
Tiny
CARADIODOC
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Some mechanics love working on VWs; most hate them, so I can't offer a better opinion there, but a failed fuel pump is not a reason to dislike a car. Two of the best vehicles I've ever owned had a lot of problems in their first year or two. One is an '88 minivan that I just retired last month due to severe rust. Actually, I love it so much because it never really did have any major problems. The other car was a '78 model that needed a lot of major repairs in the first 40,000 miles, then had almost no problems at all for the next 90,000 miles.

Most people we work with here would be quite satisfied to trade for your car. I wouldn't give up on it yet unless you're looking for an opportunity to buy something different. I still question the additional cost of the timing belt. Since the recommended replacement interval is so long, you might decline that service in the hopes they come up with a better cost. I realize there is more labor involved in replacing the additional part, but the costs you listed seem way out-of-line, unless they can give you a legitimate reason why it's so high. They might have to remove more covers, and that could include removing engine mounts, but the more I think about it, you might want to visit a third shop and just ask them how much they would charge to replace the water pump, then how much more it would be to also replace the timing belt.

There's four 2.0L engines listed for your car. Two are gas engines and two are diesels. Only one of the diesel engines is listed as an interference engine, but that is a parts web site I use for reference, so it could be wrong. If you had an interference engine, I doubt they'd stretch the timing belt replacement interval to 150,000 miles.
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Thursday, December 3rd, 2015 AT 8:34 PM
Tiny
CARADIODOC
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Sorry. I didn't see your last reply. I'd believe your source before the one I use. I'd like your goal to be to have the timing belt replaced, but also to get them to come down on the cost.
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Thursday, December 3rd, 2015 AT 8:39 PM
Tiny
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So the reason the timing belt is so expensive, is Volkswagen is trying to make me replace all of the parts for the timing belt. Belt, tensioner, rollers, etc. I asked them to just change the belt and they said they cant do that and have to replace all of the parts.
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Friday, December 4th, 2015 AT 8:43 AM
Tiny
CARADIODOC
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I forgot to mention that we always replace those tensioners and idler pulleys to insure the quality of the repair. That is in your best interest because if the new belt were to fail due to failed bearing in one of the pulleys, or a tensioner that didn't keep the belt tight, we'd be doing the job all over again AND replacing that part that should have been replaced right away. We know you won't be happy if we try to save you a few bucks but it results in you sitting on the side of the road.
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Friday, December 4th, 2015 AT 4:15 PM

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