Question about 1996 Volkswagen Jetta

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1996 VW Jetta GLS manual

Everytime I start my car the idle is really rocky.. it goes from 800 to about 100 just bouncing between the two. Then when I actually get to driving it, it dies everytime I come to a stop. I don't even have to be at a complete stop yet, just have the car in nuetral and it will die. You can also feel the vehicle trying to die between shifts. Also, whenever I roll the windows down/up (power windows) there's some sort of electrical short that causes all the lights/head lights to dim and the idle to drop. I asked one mechanic about it and he said that it may be my alternator. He also told me that VW's are notorious for not being able to hold their charge and having wiring and electical problems. :(

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  • mommasjetta Aug 25, 2008

    I have the same problem and we have replaced the throttle body because that is what keeps coming up on the codes. After replacement it said that was insufficient. Could it be that the catalytic converter is the problem.



    thank you

    Margie Gibson

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If yours is a 2.0 like mine and a giant pain in the rear like mine then your problem is either the brass piece on the throttle right by the intake has popped of do to build up of the (crank case ventelator valve) or the valve is so gunked up with a yellowish type of **** that is suffacating in its own fumes. try if the brass piece is conected try to get you ventalator valve off without braking it its about $70 if you do and your car will not run without it if you can get it off without braking it its the round valve coming out of the crankcase conected to your intake clean it with wd40 and spray it out with a hose and when you put it back together put a screen or some kind of filter over it so next time you just have to replace the screen witch is alot easier then trying to keep taking it of and on cuase its real hard to take it off if its the brass piece zip tie it to your intake hose and you should be set.

Posted on Jul 29, 2008

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Hi. If your car has on board diagnostics - they were introduced around that time - the best and only sensible course of action is to get the fault codes read using the VAG diagnostic software. Come back and post them and I'll see what I can do for you.

There are a zillion things that can go wrong and I wouldn't suggest doing it any other way. - apart from checking for broken, kinked or perished vacuum hoses.

Hope this helps. If this "fixes ya", I'd appreciate a rating for my reply, If not, please delay the rating and add a comment with any extra info you have and I will try to think of something else.

Cheers, D.
93 Golf, 96 Passat TD, 97 Sharan TDI

Posted on Jul 11, 2008

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Had the same problem on my 94 Jetta 2.0, on cold starts if you touched the throttle before it warmed up it would surge and try to die. I found sand and dirt covering the mass air flow sensor in the top of the filter box and oil residue throughout. I took the mafs out and cleaned it with carb and choke cleaner then blew it out with compressor air. Ran like a champ after with no hesitations or surges even when cold.

Posted on Apr 04, 2010

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