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Thread: 1996 TDI Jetta Wont Start?

  1. #1

    Default 1996 TDI Jetta Wont Start?

    Ok yes I know this could be many many many different things. But I will tell you the story and what I have done and maybe someone can point me in a shorter direction then everything.

    So its beein pouring rain the last few days. MY car was parked for like 3-4 days and before then it ran great.

    Today I got home and started it up to let the windows unfog. I turned the key let the light come on until the glow plugs were charged then it started right up. Then got out and it shut off by itself. So I got back in turned the kjey and the light for the glow plugs never came on. Thats when I knew it couldnt be good.

    I waited a bit it never came on so I tried turning it. IT turned over great lots of power from the battery but it wont fire up.

    I checked the fuses under the dash and they are all good. I couldnt find any under the hood tho?

    Also when I used to turn the key you could hear something under the hood making noise (thought it was the glow plugs warming up) but now I dont hear it.

    Anyone have any ideas on how to get my car started?

    The anti freeze is low. Could that be the problem?

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  3. #2

    Default Re: 1996 TDI Jetta Wont Start?

    Not really well versed on TDIs but it sounds like the glow plug is bad?

  4. #3

    Default Re: 1996 TDI Jetta Wont Start?

    Quote Originally Posted by ApexerVR6 View Post
    Not really well versed on TDIs but it sounds like the glow plug is bad?
    would one bad glow plug make the whole car not run? or could it possible run off 3 out of 4?

  5. #4
    Member elwoodp44 is on a distinguished road elwoodp44's Avatar
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    Jun 2008
    Southwestern New Mexico

    Default Re: 1996 TDI Jetta Wont Start?

    What's the outside air temperature? Under normal circumstances if the temperature is not COLD (40 deg. F.) your engine should fire up without the glow plugs. If the engine was running and quit I'd continue to look for an electrical problem, especially since the glow plug light is no longer lit when you turn on the key. The electric shut-off valve probably lost its 12 volts for some reason...keep looking.


  6. #5
    Junior Member tdi jet is on a distinguished road tdi jet's Avatar
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    Oct 2010

    Default Re: 1996 TDI Jetta Wont Start?

    hi my name is brad my tdi done the same thing it was running and shut off buy its self and it ended up being the injector cap blew off bought a new one and put it on and it started right up but my glow plug light still came on when i had my prob so it could be a bad glow plug or a electrical prob man i know it might not help but good luck and lmk what u find out hope u find out whats going on.The anti freeze wouldnt be the prob but it would be smart to put some in it


  7. #6
    Junior Member nstam is on a distinguished road nstam's Avatar
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    Apr 2010
    Penticton/Vancouver BC, Canada

    Default Re: 1996 TDI Jetta Wont Start?

    If it started and then died, but won't start back up again it doesn't mean that its your glow plugs necessarily. The purpose of the glow plugs is just to pre-heat the cylinder to aid with the initial ignition of the diesel fuel, after that it runs off of compression. Couldn't tell you why they're not coming on now, but after it had been run it wouldn't have needed them unless it was really cold out. Since you already checked the fuses, I'd go on to the fuel system (filters, pump etc.) it sounds like you're having problems with the fuel delivery, I had a problem somewhat like this with my 98 TDI but the filter was just plugged up.

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