Question about 2002 Volkswagen Passat

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I have been told that my 2002 Passat needs to have the catalytic converter replaced. He has quoted me $1800 for parts, and almost $900 for labor. THis sounds expensive, esp as I've seen catalytic converters for sale for $400! What is your opinon?

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  • glennblasius Aug 20, 2010

    Thanks. He said there were two converters, and checking the web, it does appear that there are ones listed for the drivers side and passengers side. Is this true? If so, do you have any suggestions about figuring out which one it is? And should I order on line? If so, can you suggest a reputable website?

    Many thanks for your help!




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I agree that this is a common fault on this vehicle.If you are in the US, all emissions components, including the catalytic converter are warrantied for 8 years/80K miles.

This quote is quite higher ( i suppose this is a quote from a dealer ).The one that you may find for around $200 - $400 is Universal catalytic converter and it could fit your car.

Just grab a universal catalytic converter and your cost would be around $400 for parts instead of $2000.

Labor cost is again a bit high. Ideally, it should be ( assuming that it is a reputed dealer in a big state of NYC ) is around $500.

Good Luck!!


Posted on Aug 20, 2010

  • taran_2005
    taran_2005 Aug 20, 2010

    Thanks for your response!!

    2 Converters - Tell me the engine type? Few of them even have 4 converters.

    Some vehicles have warranty extensions, the warranty for some Jettas and Golfs actually was extended to 120,000 due to high failure rate. Federal emissions warranty is 80,000 miles on them. So, so check and make sure that isn't covered by warranty and there's no software update.

    NOW, I am not saying your mechanic is lying, but if he doesn't specialize in VW then he doesn't have a scantool capable of properly diagnosing this system. It's possible your car could have a sporadic problem with the thermostat in memory that the dealer tool can see and this could cause the car to think the converters are faulty.

    I don't trust the diagnosis and I think you should get a second opinion (by the dealer or a shop specializing in VW/Audi. It may cost you $100 or so but I think you'll find the next mechanic has a different diagnosis.

    Let me explain, VW encrypts their information, so there are many things can go wrong and throw a catalytic converter fault in the OBD memory which is most of the information most mechanics can access. There is often other important diagnostic information that they can't access. You have to have a special VW and Audi only scan tool to access this info and most shops don't buy one, you'll probably only find one at a VW dealer or VW performance shop.

    There are different places to buy converters online. However, you need to make sure that the converter you are selecting would fit your vehicle. There are few adjustments that he would need to do. So, you could rather pull out the details and then discuss with him before buying it online.

    There are few sites like :-

    Usually if you search properly, ebay would give you the best price.

    Good Luck!!




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