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Hello. My GF has a 99 Jetta (new style) 2.0L, 5 speed, GLS with 55K miles.

(I used the search feature and came up empty)

She is having trouble with first and second gears and the car almost stalling. I asked her to write a description and this is what she said:

When temps are 50 and below, and the car is cold, and doesn't have a chance to warm up for a period of 20 minutes or longer, shifting into 1st and 2nd gear causes the car to jump, lurch, hesitate, however, once in 3rd gear it doesn't seem to be a problem. My work-around has been to operate the gas & clutch simultaneously, which increases the rpms, but allows the car to move semi smoothly without too much difficulty. If I were to not work both gas and clutch, my car seems like it would eventually stall.

I don't know if it's the clutch/fuel or if a missing vacuum line is to blame.

BTW: I've seen it happen when it's warmer thatn 50 degrees out too, so temp may have nothing to do with it.

Any help would be appreciated before she burns up the clutch trying the "feather" it to death to keep from stalling.


[ December 16, 2003: Message edited by: SR71 ]
 

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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by SR71:
Hello. My GF has a 99 Jetta (new style) 2.0L, 5 speed, GLS with 55K miles.

(I used the search feature and came up empty)

She is having trouble with first and second gears and the car almost stalling. I asked her to write a description and this is what she said:

When temps are 50 and below, and the car is cold, and doesn't have a chance to warm up for a period of 20 minutes or longer, shifting into 1st and 2nd gear causes the car to jump, lurch, hesitate, however, once in 3rd gear it doesn't seem to be a problem. My work-around has been to operate the gas & clutch simultaneously, which increases the rpms, but allows the car to move semi smoothly without too much difficulty. If I were to not work both gas and clutch, my car seems like it would eventually stall.

I don't know if it's the clutch/fuel or if a missing vacuum line is to blame.

BTW: I've seen it happen when it's warmer thatn 50 degrees out too, so temp may have nothing to do with it.

Any help would be appreciated before she burns up the clutch trying the "feather" it to death to keep from stalling.


[ December 16, 2003: Message edited by: SR71 ]
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Um, dont u always use the clutch and gas simultaneously pulling out? just a thought, but if she isn't pulling out right (not putting down her driving abilities) by the time you are in 3rd gear you would be moving engough to not need to gas and let the clutch out? I'm way confused about this
Driving on a cold clutch you must also adapt to its sharp responces. First winter w/ the car?
 

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Hello all... New to the forum but have been an avid VW owner for years.... I had this same problem on my old Jetta (same vehicle in question) and found that I had a cracked vacum line. It was located between the firewall and intake manafold... What would happen is that the car would start up with out issue (go VW) however when I would put the car in reverse and ease out the clutch it would instantly stall due to the engine moving a little (the give of the motor mounts) and causing the crack in the vacum line to open moore...

Hope this helps...
 

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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by XTReme:
Hello all... New to the forum but have been an avid VW owner for years.... I had this same problem on my old Jetta (same vehicle in question) and found that I had a cracked vacum line. It was located between the firewall and intake manafold... What would happen is that the car would start up with out issue (go VW) however when I would put the car in reverse and ease out the clutch it would instantly stall due to the engine moving a little (the give of the motor mounts) and causing the crack in the vacum line to open moore...

Hope this helps...
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>


I didn't know a vacume off the manifold could cause your car to stall, mines running like crap , but i have a cracked line also...Learn something new everyday.
I think the MAF is the best bet, my friend just came to me with the same problem today, i told him to clean the MAF, he had recently oiled his filter so the MAF was filty, so he cleaned it:
How-To : Clean MAF

1. Buy a 1gallon ziploc bag and some 99% isopropyl alcohol(99$ grain alcohol or moonshine wont do)
2. Place MAF inside bag and submerge with alcohol, slosh the alcohol and the MAF around a few times for 5 minutes.
3. Remove and let dry completely.

Said problem was solved, he had the same symptoms as you have.

[ December 16, 2003: Message edited by: 98a4 ]
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks everyone. I will look at the MAF, (it was replaced once under warranty with the first owner, we are the second),check the vacuum line mentioned and give you guys some more info.

When she bought the car, I replaced the air filter and changed the engine oil & filter.

I bought plugs, gear oil and a fuel filter. The plugs looked fine so since they are really a PITA to get to, I left them.

Fast forward to 3 weeks ago. The car is beelching, gasping and choking as described in my first post. I hope to God it's not the clutch. So I replace the plugs and plug wires. That does not help at all.

So this weekend (like I have lots of time during the Holidays) I will check the things everyone here has mentioned and see what I can find. A few more questions:

Do you guys suggest cleaning the MAF if it was just recently replaced?

Does the MK4 Jetta have 2 fuel pumps like my old 86 Cabriolet? And could it be a pump gone bad?

Thanks again for you help!


[ December 18, 2003: Message edited by: SR71 ]
 

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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by SR71:

Fast forward to 3 weeks ago. The car is beelching, gasping and choking as described in my first post. I hope to God it's not the clutch. So I replace the plugs and plug wires. That does not help at all. A few more questions:

Do you guys suggest cleaning the MAF if it was just recently replaced?

Does the MK4 Jetta have 2 fuel pumps like my old 86 Cabriolet? And could it be a pump gone bad?

Thanks again for you help!


[ December 18, 2003: Message edited by: SR71 ]
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

What type of air filter did you put in?
If the maf is new, it should not be dirty.
I would think it isnt a fuel pump, or the car would have a much harder time idoling.
Clutch shouldnt be it either, if it is going bad it would be slipping and the car would rev, not drop in rpm. Have you driven the car and had it happen to you?
What is the idol like?, steady or bouncy?
 

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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by 98a4:
What type of air filter did you put in?
If the maf is new, it should not be dirty.
I would think it isnt a fuel pump, or the car would have a much harder time idoling.
Clutch shouldnt be it either, if it is going bad it would be slipping and the car would rev, not drop in rpm. Have you driven the car and had it happen to you?
What is the idol like?, steady or bouncy?
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Air filter is a standard issue Purolater (not K&N or VW).

Car idles perfectly.
Clutch does not slip at all and RPMS do not rise out of sync with acceleration.

I have had it happen to me (because she asked me to drive it) and it's like the car wants to just die/stall when it happens. (green light)

A quick disengagement of the clutch and it does not stall, but you end up mashing the gas to keep it going, then engage the clutch and keep up the revs to proceed without having too many horns blowing at you from behind.

Weird.
 

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<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by SR71:
Air filter is a standard issue Purolater (not K&N or VW).

Car idles perfectly.
Clutch does not slip at all and RPMS do not rise out of sync with acceleration.

I have had it happen to me (because she asked me to drive it) and it's like the car wants to just die/stall when it happens. (green light)

A quick disengagement of the clutch and it does not stall, but you end up mashing the gas to keep it going, then engage the clutch and keep up the revs to proceed without having too many horns blowing at you from behind.

Weird.
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

With all the primary things eliminated I'm stuck. Driver error? Not used to a cold car?
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Update: I checked all the lines returning from the intake and the are all in good shape with no cuts or holes.

I cleaned what looked like the PCV and checked the MAF. The MAF looked fine.

I did see that she was down about 1 qrt of oil so I replaced that. (odd, since I changed her oil about 2 mos ago before winter)

So I don't know if there is anything else I can do. May have to take it to the shop after the Holidays.

Thanks for your suggestions everyone.
 
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