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Discussion Starter #1
OK, I just joined the forum this morning. We're a long-time VW family, but making our first foray into Touareg. We found a 2005 V8 for a GREAT price, but she needs some help. Just got it home Saturday, but here's what I know so far:

1. When we start the car, we get the "System Fault - Workshop" message in the MFI with the differential selector blinking.
2. After running for a few minutes and shutting down, a restart usually clears the message and Diff blinking.
3. The seller (a used car dealer in NJ), installed a new battery last week.
4. I charged the battery using the under-hood terminals when I got it home. Since then, it has started (sometimes harder than others). But I don't think the battery is draining to zero.
5. Last night I pulled the wire off the positive terminal under the hood and it was date stamped 01/07/02, made in Germany, so I would assume the alternator cable replacement was never done.
6. The remote key is not locking/unlocking the car (though to be fair, I have not checked the batteries in the remote yet).
7. The rear hatch will not open remotely or using the exterior latch. I can pull the cord release behind the access panel, and then it will open using the latch.
8. The navigation system seems to be funky and will not initialize (again, to be fair, I know NOTHING about this navigation system).

So to my untrained eye, the first thing I think, based on lots of Forum searching, is that the alternator/battery cable needs to be upgraded. That could explain the System Fault error (I think). But is it possible that those other issues could also be low-voltage related, or is that not likely. I tend to lean away from a parasitic battery draw, since it started last night (granted not easily), after sitting since Saturday in sub-zero temperatures.

Any thoughts or suggestions would be greatly appreciated before I spend the money on a new alternator cable and lay on my cold, unheated garage floor for a few days trying to fix this.

Thanks
 

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You probably need a new micro switch on the rear glass - a common fault.

When were the timing belt, tensioners, water pump and thermostat changed and what miles has the car done since?

5 years or 80,000 miles is your limit. Belt breaks - engine toast.
 

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Welcome aboard,

First thing you should do is get the vehicle scanned with a VCDS. This will read more than just engine codes. You can order the VCDS from Ross Tech (Ross-Tech: Home) but it's possible someone in your area may have one and could help out. Where are you in the US?

A key fob battery can't hurt, and it's a quick cheap fix.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks for the quick responses. I guess I didn't really say, we got a sketchy (at best) maintenance history for the car. It has 111,000 miles on it now, but I couldn't begin to guess when the water pump, timing belt, etc was changed, if it ever was. My plan is to have it scanned as soon as I can legally have it on the road. I'm having trouble transferring the title, as I bought it in New Jersey and I live in Pennsylvania, and some idiot (me) left his drivers license in New Jersey. So as soon as it gets here, I'll make the thing legal and take it to have it scanned.

noobytooby, are you suggesting that the timing belt, water pump, etc could be causing the faults that I described? Or are you just asking out of concern for when those things were changed?
 

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Aren't used vehicles fun. Our 09 had no history, so i played catch up for a bit, and a few minor things i haven't worried about.
 

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X2 on VCDS
You wanna own a Touareg, you need VCDS.
You should also get a dealer to run your VIN to stop the guessing game.
 

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noobytooby, are you suggesting that the timing belt, water pump, etc could be causing the faults that I described? Or are you just asking out of concern for when those things were changed?
Concerned your car may not have been correctly maintained. If the belt hasn't been changed on your ten year old car you are now very much on borrowed time and 30K overdue into the bargain.

Unless you can verify with 200% certainty the job was done properly with all the bits on time within the last 5 years, then it's a do it ASAP job since, like I said before, if that belt breaks, the engine is toast.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I called all of the dealers that serviced the car since initial purchase (as shown in the CarFax). Non of them had records of having changed the timing belt. Looks like that will be first on my list of repairs. There is also no record of having replaced the alternator cable, and my snooping seems to confirm that. So that will be 2nd on the list of repairs. Thanks for all the input.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Nooby, good call on the timing belt. I dropped her off at my mechanic over the weekend. He called me Monday and asked how it got her there? He pulled the timing covers, and the belt was sooooo loose that he could slide his fingers between the belt and the pulleys. Ordered a new kit from Blau and it's being installed tomorrow, along with serpentine, thermostat, etc, etc.
 

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Phew, that was a close call then!

And a while back one or two folk weren't happy I kept telling new owners of early used V8s about the timing belt . . .

I'm very glad I have persisted.

Thank you too for my 100th "Thank You".

I don't seek them - in fact I was against their introduction and recently posted they clutter up the pages and are being used incorrectly!

But I will gladly accept yours and hope your car is soon rarin' to go!
 

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Discussion Starter #11
OK, just got the Touareg back from the garage with new timing belt, water pump, thermostat, serpentine belt...the works. Obviously that didn't fix my electrical glitches, so I'm back at it tonight. Based on my original post, I have some oddball issues that may or may not be connected to my alternator/battery cable.

So my first follow-up question would be, whether or not all the glitches can be attributed to a bad charge cable, I still SUSPECT it needs changed. It was manufactured in 2002 and my VIN falls into the list of those that have had problems. But how can I verify the cable is not charging correctly. The voltage on the dash reads a constant 14v. Should I also be measuring the voltage at the terminal bolts under the hood? When running or when off? Or should I be checking the actual battery terminal voltage? Again, running or off? I just want to make sure I'm testing in the right progression so I can avoid replacing things that don't need replaced. Alternator cable, battery ground, etc?
Thanks
 

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Voltage at the battery and at the terminals under the hood should be the same.

Testing voltage with ignition off will tell you a little bit about the health of the battery. You said that is new, however.

Testing voltage with the ignition on will tell you a little bit about the health of the alternator.

As for the other issues, check your fuses, just because, and because it's free. The keyless entry has been reported by others to fail and cause battery drain, but I wouldn't label it as the culprit just yet.

Also, if you don't have it, REALLY consider investing in VCDS. An autoscan will tell you a lot.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
will do. I'll test it in both scenarios (running and off) and report any odd findings. I too have a little doubt about the battery. The dealer said "it was dead so I did you a FAVOR and installed a new one." What a nice guy. I suppose I could have asked him what his definition of "new" is. I'll play around with the old multi-meter tonight and see where it goes. Thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
New question on sourcing a replacement alternator/battery cable...

I found one at a dealership who is willing to part with it for just under $200. Not a bad price. But I asked him to verify when it was made. He said it is "brand new", and it is date stamped July 1, 2002. So to go back to a fundamental question, what is the root problem with the alternator/starter/battery cable? Is the cable itself undersized? Or is it the connections? Or do they just wear out and need replaced? And is there a known production date when they started making better cables? I understand that this particular dealership has a "Brand New" cable, but I'm afraid if it was made in 2002 that it would be no better than the original. Or am I missing something, and maybe a 2002 cable is fine?
 

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You should be looking for positive (B+) cable (7LO 971 228B) dated 06-08-04) or later. Good luck
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Awesome. Good to know. Same part number, but a newer version. That makes things more interesting. I guess I won't look for new old stock. I'll just buy something from ECS Tuning or somewhere like that. Thanks.
 

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Technical bulletin states, consumer concern of electrical issues including No start, No crank, Load interventions and/or load intervention faults (electrical consumers not functioning) may be due to low battery voltage.
Production Solution As of VIN 7L_5D023562, all touareg V8 engine vehicles produced have improved battery/generator B+ cable
 
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Discussion Starter #18
I'm looking for some added guidance on this battery cable problem. I've narrowed my symptoms down to a bad voltage and would like to replace the battery B+ cable. I actually ordered one from ECS Tuning, and when it arrived, I was disappointed to see that it was date stamped from early 2004, before the TSB recommends. So I returned it and went to my local VW dealer. They had 2 in stock, but they were $50 more. Oh well (I thought). However, when the pulled their stock, they too were from January 2004.
So my question to the collective is, where can I buy a battery B+ cable, VW part 7L0 971-228 B that isn't 12 years old? Any suggestions?
 
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