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I know I know...I did a search and checked out the faq, but we all know search on these forums doesn't work too terribly well.

Anyways i've done some google searching and this engine is used in a LOT of places. (Beetles/Jettas/Audi's etc....)

That being said what common issues is someone expected to see? Is the Engine "overall" reliable? I know the Auto tranny's in a lot of the cars that use these engines isn't great but besides that I mean "Engine" bay specific stuff. (We all know of the VW electrical gremlins and such).

Things I know of : Timing Belt (Which is with any car with a TB), Coil packs, Window Regulators (That's not really an engine thing), O2 Sensor (See Previous), Water Pumps (The bane of all Euro cars haha), Head gasket (Is this actually a common problem though?).

Anything I missing? I'd also like someone to touch on the Head gasket point, I've seen it mentioned a few times....but nothing specific, is it actually "common". (Aka like Subaru headgasket failure common, lol).

Thanks
 

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1: Sludge buildup from poor oil maintenance.

2: Coil Packs

3: Water Pumps ( Plastic impellers slipping )

4: Vacuum leaks


The oil sludge issue is the big one. Other than that the engines are pretty solid. T/Belts are no better or worse than any other engine. T/Belt gas tensioner failure seems to be related more to poor quality replacement aftermarket parts than an actual defect in factory piece. Head gaskets don't seem to be an issue at all.
 

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Headgasket failure is not anything like a suburu thats for damn sure.. ive never had my headgasket go.. *knock on wood* dont know of anyone with a 1.8t that has had their headgasket go either.. i know quite a few people driving these motors around, the two of u have pretty much touched one everything... the fuel pumps are kinda weak sometimes though i have never had this problem i just replaced mine with a dw65 fuelpump, and my OEM still works fine.. I just needed more ooomph for the Big Turbo build.
 

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they are pretty much solid engines a lot of vaccum lines and such get dry rotted easily but that's over time. Mostly these engines are pretty solid and reliable when maintained but that can be said about any car line. as for head gaskets no they don't just randomly go out on you. There pretty solid.
 

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It's weird how everyone on the internet constantly says the avoid the 1.8t engne as it's "awful and unreliable"......i wonder why. Those issues don't seem crazy with proper maintenance.
people fear things they do not understand.. the 1.8t is a great engine... very reliable... people are uneducated.
 

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I was a little worried when I bought mine, but I fell in love with the mid-range pull after a test drive. I knew I had to have a turbo and 1.8T VWs/Audis are the most readily-available turbo cars in the country (especially for the amount of money I was willing to spend). I had heard the horror stories, but then that's just how the Internet works. Nobody posts all-caps rants about how their car is working totally fine again today.

I also think part of the problem is that Americans just don't maintain their cars very well. Admittedly, this is a broad statement, but I've known people that have managed to ruin late-model Corollas, FFS. In my area, shops charge $80/hr for labor and that's not even the Euro specialists. If your car is out of warranty it's almost more cost-effective to drive it into a ditch and buy another one.

</rant> I've been drinking.
 

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My 1.8t has never left me stranded. System leaks are the only thing I've had to deal with in 100K miles. It's properly maintained, driven and having a 'sense' for when something is slightly off are some good keys in keeping it reliable and healthy. And that goes for a lot of cars/engines.

But I agree, a lot of people simply don't have that dedication to their car, which to some, is just something to get them from point A to point B and tends to cause lapses in maintenance, disregard to symptoms or simply unable to fix whatever the issue may be. And the whole, 'people are more vocal about negatives' certainly tilts the scale.
 

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I gotta admit they are nice cars to drive. Took my B5 Quattro out for a run in the Valley today. About 25 Celcius down by the river. Cooled off to 22 c on the way back. Engine was purring like a kitten in the cool evening air and making LOTS of power. Gotta love the torque. :cool:
 

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Yeah, coming from a MKII, and a MKIII, I was a little apprehensive about all of that NVH, as chickenman alluded to, but after a little research, I was put at ease and bought one. Now, this car has a lot more electrical gremlins due to the complexity versus its two predecessors, but with the aid of the vortex, I'm not scared to death of it. Car has 142,000 miles and runs STOUT. Impressed the hell out of me. I had to buy in a pinch, because the wife totaled the MKIII, but, after I changed the pickup tube, slapped on a TB and WP, pulled the VC and found ZERO sludge, I decided to keep 'er around. All of those airbags makes me feel better with the kiddies in there too. I got an extended powertrain warranty on it just in case, and it came in handy, saving me quite a bit of coin on a CCT. I've finally found a guy who isn't scared to work on it, so if anything major comes of this transmission issue, I'm not too worried. I'm starting to think it's just a solenoid anyway, it just has a slight rough shift from 2nd to 3rd when cold, or it's been sitting a while. I hate car payments, so I'll just stick with it for a while......and I may buy another one to play with.....:D

I don't mind working on 'em myself, somethings are beyond my skill level, but time is my main enemy. So, finding a cat that would work on it was imperative. Only bad thing, he's in my hometown, 50 miles away :(

As for internet horror stories, after my Dodge Dakota hit 150k, I learned to not put much stock them. I've had the recalls handled, and done all of the maintenance myself. I've replaced a radiator hose, a power steering pump, serpentine, clutch fan, a u joint, and I just did all four ball joints with Moog, and put shocks all around it at 190k this winter. I also just replaced all four o2 sensors when one went bad because at 191k....you figure you've gotten your money's worth! You can't believe everything you read on the interwebs......like someone else said as well: people are pretty car illiterate.
 

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When the 1.8T came out, it was lauded for its smoothness...a lot of things change in 15+ years though. I still think it's a fine motor in terms of NVH, above average compared to most inline-4s. Inline-4s just aren't the smoothest engine layout inherently.
 

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Say what you will about the 1.8T. It is definitely one of the desired engines among "car people"

I mean I am pushing a 190K 1.8T at 17psi, unbuilt. Stout little engines. It definitely pushes the Quattro along quite nicely!
Yes..gotta agree there. I'll gladly take the Torque of a 1.8T over the sweetness of some of the Japanese NA inline 4's. Hard to beat a Honda or Mazda Inline 4 engine for smoothness though. Just my .02c
 

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Bringing this thread back to life with my experience with a 2005 Jetta GLI 1.8T with auto transmission which currently have 128k miles on it. Bought this used in 2014 and here is everything that i had to repair on this car,

1. Engine sludge out of the gate. My fault, should have changed oil immediately after buying it.
2. Oil cooler failure. Mix of oil in coolant.
3. Fuel pump failure
4. Both fans failed.
5. Secondary air pump failure
6. Crankshaft position sensor failure
7. 2 of 3 power steering line failure
8. multiple vacuum line replacements
9. Brake booster line replacements
10. transmission valve body replacement
11. Radiator leak and replacement
12. Coolant flange leak and replacement
13. Rear center brake light replacement. (a few of the LEDs went out)
14. LCD replacement on instrument cluster since in hot weather it was not viewable.
15. Glove box door replacement.

I now have a P0011/12 code coming up which is most likely the camshaft chain tensioner. If you buy the OEM CCT, it is ~$850-900 for just the part.

The driverside rear door lock mechanism is not working all the time and will need to be replaced soon.

Not to mention that doing a timing belt change every 60K miles seems a bit quick, but needed based on a number of posts.

Besides that, the actual engine is great. Fun to drive. But i will never buy another VW. The amount of money sunk in this car would buy me a much newer and reliable car.
 

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It's weird how everyone on the internet constantly says the avoid the 1.8t engne as it's "awful and unreliable"......i wonder why. Those issues don't seem crazy with proper maintenance.
Currently on 251K miles, can attest to reliability.
Only engine issues have been belt and.....
Yeah just belt. Change that oil every 3K (atleast that’s what I do) and use full synth. This thread has pretty much covered it
 

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I’d say pretty reliable. My 02 jetta had 241k of abuse, neglect, and just a rough life. Did oil changes every 10k had stage two ecu with a front mount all emissions and safety features deleted out and ran it low on coolant A LOT and it just blew up. It was pretty amazing. Got mid 30’s on the highway and always saw above 100 and a few times spun it over 7500 rpms. All I did was did the timing belt service. I’ll always have a 1.8t. My favorite 4cyl engine.
 
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