Volkswagen Vehicles Most Common Problems

Volkswagen is a household name most people are familiar with. Volkswagen was established in 1937. The company started off producing cars when cars were considered luxury items and only available to wealthy people even though Volkswagen means “people’s car”.

Volkswagen is a German car manufacturer and one of the largest in the world. That doesn’t mean you will never experience common issues just like all other car manufacturers.

Volkswagen Interior

Volkswagen has won many awards for its design and safety and seems to be light years ahead when it comes to safety features. They have been adding safety features into their cars even back when it was not legally required. Their cars are very popular with new, younger drivers just starting off driving. They offer a wide range of digital safety features that are integrated into the cars for better handling and allow for more enjoyable rides.

Over the years, Volkswagen experienced their own vehicle issues that needed to be addressed. We have listed some of the most common repairs and defects Volkswagen owners have gone through. Every car and truck has its flaws, there is no such thing as a “perfect” vehicle. This list should not prevent you from purchasing from a particular car manufacturer it’s just a list so you will be aware if the unexpected occurs.

The chances of running into many of these issues are highly unlikely but one or two could show up during the lifetime of your vehicle, the conditions you drive in and if you do not keep up with your service schedule.

The Check Engine Light

Volkswagen Check Engine Light

There are a few things that can trigger the check engine light to come on which can be annoying. The light coming on does not mean it’s a problem with your engine but something is up and should be addressed. Possibly, it could be a loose fuel cap which is a common Volkswagen issue. If the engine light comes on it doesn’t mean you have a critical issue but you must get it checked out.

Keep in mind, your car will not pass an inspection if this light is on and you will not know if it’s a serious problem until your mechanic looks into it. Some Volkswagen vehicles will have the light coming on even though the vehicle has low mileage. It could be a glitch in the software or the sensor is not working correctly.

A Timing Belt Defect

This could be an issue. Eventually, the timing belt will need to be repaired it’s unavoidable. What’s a real headache is if it becomes defective way too soon. Should the timing belt become defective, this could lead to serious engine problems.

Volkswagen said their timing belts are designed to last around 120,000 miles. It has been reported in some vehicles from the late 2000s experiencing timing belt issues way too soon. Some have even failed at a mere 20,000 miles but this is prone to specific models with specific engines. This can be a major issue so you must be aware of it if the check engine light comes on and it’s the timing belt.

Oil Problems

Volkswagen Oil Check

All vehicles need to have oil changes periodically which shouldn’t be a surprise. Volkswagen, on the other hand, had issues with cars early in the 2000s. These cars were forming nasty oil buildups far sooner than could be expected. Cars were experiencing engine trouble at 70,000 miles if the oil was not changed on a regular basis. Since then, Volkswagen has corrected this issue but you still need to get your oil changed regularly to extend the life of your vehicle. If you change the oil every 4,000 to 5,000 miles, you will not get a buildup of gunk that can damage the engine.

Wire Harness Shorts

This issue is pretty much identified with the 2006 Jetta. Because this was a popular model, Volkswagen ended up with a reputation for having defective electronics in their vehicles even though this problem was almost totally with the Jetta. The wiring harness would short out around 100,000 miles. Keep in mind, the electronics in your car should be checked by your mechanic. This is especially true when your car is around the six-digit mark in mileage.

The Airbag Malfunction Light

Volkswagen Airbag Warning Light

At 100,000 miles, this seems to be a time for issues when it comes to electronics. Similar to the check engine light, this is one that can be very frustrating as the malfunction light is telling you there is a problem with your airbag causing you to head to your mechanic and have it checked. The bottom line, it’s better to stay on the safe side. The last thing you need is to think it’s just a sensor issue and find yourself in a situation with a deployed airbag!

Coil Failure

Some Volkswagen models will experience coil failure around 70,000 miles. A failed coil can lead to ignition and engine issues. You might experience backfiring, terrible fuel consumption, and your engine stalling. You’d be smart to take the car to your mechanic if you feel it could be a coil issue. Like other car issues, you need to address the smaller problems first before they become bigger problems.

Strange Noises

Volkswagen Engine

Volkswagen, just like other vehicles, can develop clunking noises in the front of vehicles with front-wheel drive. The top of the suspension strut mount can degrade causing that clunking sound upon rotation. If the rear springs start failing it can cause a rattling sound in the back of the vehicle. The sound can become quite apparent when you drive over bumps. Should you hear a rattling sound in the centre of the car, it’s probably a failure in the mid-section muffler bracket.


There is no doubt Volkswagen produces some excellent vehicles and is always very popular. Problems can arise and when they do, you need to get the issue resolved by a qualified mechanic to get your car back up and running. Everything is not an emergency but keeping up with your regular maintenance will help you keep down any major expenses later on. Always take your car to professionals you trust.

We are dedicated to offering you the best service at an affordable price. If your Volkswagen needs checking, repairs, a service or an MOT use our simple quote form with no obligation to get a quote.

If you believe you may have a problem with your Ford you can have it checked by Servicing Master if you are in and around Manchester city centre and North Manchester, Oldham, Bury, Bolton, Rochdale, Stalybridge etc.. You can get a quick repair or service quote by using our simple car service quote form. We also offer a collection and drop off service. A convenient, friendly and affordable service, try Servicing Master once and you’ll never go back. Give us a call now on 0161 302 0201. Or simply book your car service now.

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