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Old 09-14-2005, 12:05 PM   #1
jengocat1
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A VW Check Engine Light question

The other morning I was driving in for an appointment to my doctor and my car was running great. It is a 1997 VW Golf GL (III generation), automatic transmission, etc etc... and when I left the doctors office, the Check Engine light came on and has not gone off since then. That was two days ago. The car is idling perfectly as far as I can tell by sound. It does not idle rough at all. It is not burning oil. There are no oil leaks or anyting like that. The belts all seem to be in good condition as far as I can tell. I cannot see the timing belt but I dont here any noise that would clue me into a timing problem.

I am thinking it is the mass air flow indicator or oxygen sensor but I am not sure. Some people with similar VW's have said they have had the same problem and they take it to a shop where they replace part after part and the light still keeps coming on after a few days.

So, my question is this: Is there anything in particular I should be looking for as far as a defect. I just got out of the military and I have not had a chance to amass a good set of tools yet, but I plan on doing so very soon and I know I can fix the problem myself, but for now I dont have a code reader or anything like that so I am looking to you all for a few suggestions on what I should be looking at.

Like I said the car is running great, it only has 65,668 miles on it and it has never been driven hard. I dont race it or anything and have made no modifications to it so all the parts are OEM parts.

If anyone has any ideas I would be happy to hear of them.

Thank you very much and Aloha from hawaii!
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Old 09-14-2005, 01:50 PM   #2
theman352001
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If the light is on then a code has been set. Take it to your local auto parts place and have them hook a scanner up to it to find out what the code is. Then if you want to throw parts at the car you will know what to throw. Otherwise, take it to a shop where they can acurately diagnose the problem.
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Old 09-14-2005, 03:08 PM   #3
SyntheticTrust
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Whatever you do, DO NOT take your car to AutoZone. The same thing happened to my car.
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Old 09-14-2005, 03:14 PM   #4
dodger65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SyntheticTrust
Whatever you do, DO NOT take your car to AutoZone. The same thing happened to my car.

what happened? i only recommend autozone to pull codes for free...
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Old 09-14-2005, 03:28 PM   #5
SyntheticTrust
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They read the code to me and then told me to unplug my battery to erase the light, so I did. Come to find out later I could have really ****ed up my car by doing that.
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Old 09-14-2005, 03:39 PM   #6
dodger65
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SyntheticTrust
They read the code to me and then told me to unplug my battery to erase the light, so I did. Come to find out later I could have really ****ed up my car by doing that.

oh. i believe they were definitely misinformed to tell you to do that. usually, you can't erase codes like that on newer cars. you have to use the scan tool... how did they say you could have messed up your car by unplugging the battery? that seems kind of odd, b/c how are you supposed to change the battery then?
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