Shop Shots Volume 39 Insider Pictures of Automotive Service

Failed Volkswagen water pump

Happy Wednesday everyone! Like always, we have the behind the scenes pictures from a VW dealership. I hope you all know how much I like doing these Wednesday posts. I try to capture all the fun things that happen in a service department. Well, all the stuff that is clean enough to share anyway 😉

Body work on a VWI have talked before about signs of body work on a car. The things that you need to look for before buying any car, new or used. Here is a classic example of what that can look like. The hatch of this Jetta has been hit. I don’t know the story, but I can see the results. From the factory, most car makers paint all the nuts and bolts that hold the body together. Things like fenders, hoods, and doors generally have the the fasteners painted. Checking for the paint missing or broken like these are can give clear evidence of body work.

If a car just had some cosmetic damage, you probably will not see this. There is no reason to remove a fender to fix a scratch. Most body shops will fix that right on the car. Also know that even new cars can have this. They should not be selling them as new, but I know some places will.

TDI VW pump failureThis is a picture of the fuel tank on a new TDI diesel Jetta. The trucking company mis-fueled the tanks. Because of that, the customer filled their car with gasoline. This one was not the customers fault. It was not a HPFP failure, it was clearly a car that had been mis-fueled.

When I removed the in tank fuel pump, I found all this debris. It seemed to be dirt. I am not exactly sure what the heck it was, but it was everywhere. It was stuck in the pump, and all throughout the tank. I was able to clean it all out. That meant I got to bury my face in a gas tank for about 30 minutes. There are 2 lessons we can learn from this

  1. Be careful where you fill up your tank. You might be filling it with the wrong fuel or pumping contaminants into your tank.
  2. Never under estimate how important a fuel filter is. If there was not a filter on the in tank pump, or near the engine, all this would have totally ruined the fuel system.

Very dirty car floor shop shots VWThis is the floor of a VW Jetta. As you can see it is covered in dirt, leaves, and pine needles. Normally I would not care one bit about that. This car had a recall to rewire the airbags in the seats. That means hanging out on the floor board of this car. You can also see the back seat was jam packed full of stuff.

I don’t really care if a customer has a clean car, or a dirty car. I am not really a fan of smelly cars, but that is another story. I do not really care for working on the floor of a car that is covered in nasty. If you are planning to bring your car in, please at least pick it up a little.

Failed Volkswagen water pumpI want to wrap up today with this. What you are looking at is a water pump from a 2001 VW Jetta 2.0l. This is a very common point of failure on that engine. The reason is the impeller is plastic. It is molded onto a metal shaft. Over time the plastic breaks loose and the pump stops pumping. If your mechanic tells says your water pump has failed, this may be what it looks like.

Another round of Shop Shots in the books. Be sure you do not miss next weeks volume. We are doing a best of and that will be super fun! Also, I have a few things I want to giveaway, but you will need to tune in next week to see what they are. I may drop a hint or two on Facebook in the mean time. 😛

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6 replies
  1. Gezika
    Gezika says:

    Pardon my idiocy but what are we looking at in the Jetta leaves picture? I can’t tell what is what. Have the seats been taken out or is the picture just up close? I’m so confused. :/

  2. Mathew Maher
    Mathew Maher says:

    As for the water pump, I feel safer knowing that mine was replaced with a metal one when I replaced my camshaft in my 2.0L Golf.

    Another great round of Shop Snaps, I hope the customer didn’t have to pay out of pocket for the fuel tank.

    • Jeremy
      Jeremy says:

      I replaced my water pump with one that has metal impellers as well. Now I have piece of mind that it won’t fail before my next timing belt change

  3. Florin
    Florin says:

    Coming to a car shop with so much garbage in it is like going to a doctor with a filthy underwear…

    All your photos in Shop Shots have a common flaw: you only show us a CLOSE UP picture that makes it hard for us to understand it. The solution is simple: take an overview picture THEN the close up one and show us both of them. We are not retarded, maybe tired…


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