The iconic VW Golf needs no introduction. This smart little compact sports car has been a mainstay of the German automaker for decades. However, like all mass-produced vehicles, it is not without its problems. Keep reading until the end and discover the common faults of the Volkswagen Golf .
Common faults of the Volkswagen Golf
The VW Golf is still one of the best cars to drive and a good new model will hold its value through the years. You should be aware that with certain Golf models there are more significant issues that will need specific investigation.
1- Engine failures
The car can start to misfire occasionally . If this happens, there may be a problem with the ignition coil packs. In most cases, these tend to break in groups, so you should check them all for damage. Fortunately, these are easy to find and you can replace them yourself.
2- Timing belt problems
There are known issues with the timing belt on the 1.4 and 1.8 liter versions of the VW Golf. This can cause misfiring , idling problems, and even stalling. These problems are clear during normal driving. It is good that you take the car to an expert.
3- Engine rattling sound
Another common Volkswagen Golf fault occurs when you hear a rattling sound heard when starting the engine, which disappears after driving for a few miles and then reappears at random intervals.
Perhaps the VW Golf has a noticeable problem with its camshaft-driven high-pressure fuel pump . You should change yours every 20k miles even if you don’t hear that rattling sound, but that’s what causes it. A replacement fuel pump would fix the problem.
4- Electrical problems (ECU)
Golfs are well known for having sub-par electrical systems. You should check all the systems, from the lights to the power windows, the central locking and the air conditioning.
5- DPF warning light (Diesel Particulate Filter)
If you have noticed that the DPF warning light has come on on your dashboard, you have a problem with the DPF (Diesel Particulate Filter). This piece is responsible for controlling exhaust emissions . When the car is used to drive short distances in the city, not enough heat accumulates to burn the particles.
To fix this issue, try driving at 2,500 rpm on a highway or highway for about 15 minutes to generate enough heat to remove particulate matter from the filter. This should turn off the light, otherwise you will need to change the Particle filter.
6- Sudden gear changes (automatic)
Another of the common faults of the Volkswagen Golf is that the automatic gear changes are not smooth. In most cases, you’re going to have to replace the entire gearbox unit, as this is a common problem on Golfs, especially older models.
However, before doing so, check the timing chain . There is a chance that it has broken, and it is easier to find a replacement timing chain and replace it yourself than to disassemble and install the entire automatic gearbox unit.
7- Brakes that do not respond
In some cars you have to apply a lot of force to the brake pedal to engage. It is very likely that the brake booster tube has cracked and is leaking brake fluid . You can request a replacement at an auto parts store and install the new tube.
8- Suspension problems
If you hear a screeching or rattling noise coming from the front suspension when driving over rough surfaces or potholes, you have a problem with your sway bar bushings. This is another of the common Volkswagen Golf faults, and to solve it you will have to replace the bushings to solve the problem.
9- Hot ABS unit
The ABS unit overheats, even on short drives in some VW Golf. This problem is common on Golfs manufactured between 1997 and 2004 and is due to an electrical failure in the ABS control unit. If left untreated it could cause a fire . Find a replacement ABS unit, remove the defective part, and install one that will last much longer.
10- Overheating problems
Do you have a 2006-2007 Golf? You better watch out for overheating issues as there is a known improperly grounded element in this model and can therefore overheat frequently. This problem will require an examination by an expert and could mean that you need to change the part.
11- Problem with Rust
Do you have a Mark 5 Golf? Well, be careful with the foam pads that are embedded in your car’s spoiler, as they can become waterlogged over time, which can cause paint damage and even bodywork corrosion . This type of damage could cause you unwanted expenses.
12- Idle malfunction
The engine may run very rough when driving or there may be problems when the engine is idling. The cause is usually a problem with the ignition coil pack. You will need to replace the coil pack to resolve the issue.
13- Squeak from the rear
A screeching noise can be heard coming from the rear of the car while driving. Some Golfs made between 1997 and 2004 had faulty rear axles. The sound is produced by moisture entering the ball joints . Those ball joints corrode and seize. You’re going to have to replace the entire rear axle.
14- Defective seat belt
The seat belt is excessively tight when moving forward quickly. Although this is clearly a problem with the seat belt pretensioner, it is not something that can be ignored.
Some models manufactured between 1997 and 2004 had pre-tensioners that discharge excessive heat when put into operation, and there is a risk of starting a fire. You will have to find replacement seat belt pretensioners and replace them with the defective ones.
15- Rear trunk lock problems
If you’re having trouble with the trunk lock on your Golf, you’re not alone. This is a common fault on these cars. Try spraying some WD40 on the lock actuator to fix the problem . If this doesn’t work, you can reset the controller. You will find the instructions in the owner’s manual.