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Old 05-08-2012, 06:16 PM
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Question Intermittent EPC Light

To add to the list of my many issues with my '02 Beetle, I am now having the EPC light pop up intermittently. I called my VW dealer and they did take care of the brake light switch in June 2007 with the recall. So - could it be that again?

How should I go about diagnosing this? I have been doing some searches on the forums and everyone's situation is so different I don't see any answers to my situation.

Do I really need to go see my VW guy? He's hard to get to and the hours don't work for me but there are only a handful of shops in town that I can go to. He mentioned the throttle something when I called ($400+) and another issue it could be ($300-400?). I'm hoping it's neither since I haven't noticed a performance issue.

I am about at my wits end. On top of that my front right wheel is creaking so I was going to get that checked out. If this is all going to cost me $1,000, I'm putting that towards a new car instead.

Any help would be great. I'm not quite ready to ditch my beetle yet.
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Old 05-08-2012, 06:37 PM
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Could possibly be the brake switch again. You can call VW again and tell them that the recall item was defective and they can replace it for you. Its worth a shot though.

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Old 05-09-2012, 05:10 PM
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Well today it came on when I was accelerating. Does that help diagnose the issue? It's usually when I'm coming out of a brake or stop and am accelerating.
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Old 05-09-2012, 09:08 PM
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I get a random EPC light also. I opted to skip the dealer and purchase a new brake light switch myself ($7.12 and 30 mins of my time). I also have been having problems with my brake lights. The bulbs are good but they do not work. I ended up pulling up the brass connectors located inside the light bulb socket. I read somewhere they can sometimes get pushed down and do not make a solid connection to the bulb.
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Old 05-09-2012, 09:43 PM
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If its a throttle body, check out www.autohausaz.com
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Old 05-10-2012, 01:51 AM
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First of all you should have the car scanned for codes. Without any concrete place to start you can guess yourself into the poor house and still not address the real issue.

Go to Autozone and have them scan for codes. Write those down and post them here and then we can at least make an educated diagnosis rather than speculate what it may or may not be.
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Old 05-10-2012, 02:06 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IndyTom View Post
First of all you should have the car scanned for codes. Without any concrete place to start you can guess yourself into the poor house and still not address the real issue.

Go to Autozone and have them scan for codes. Write those down and post them here and then we can at least make an educated diagnosis rather than speculate what it may or may not be.
Well, I was going to do this, but my boyfriend who worked at Advance Auto Parts for 6+ years swore to me I wouldn't get codes if the Check Engine light wasn't on. I thought about checking it anyway...guess I should?
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Old 05-10-2012, 02:18 AM
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There are plenty of codes that can be stored without triggering a CEL.
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Old 05-10-2012, 02:18 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zypher View Post
Well, I was going to do this, but my boyfriend who worked at Advance Auto Parts for 6+ years swore to me I wouldn't get codes if the Check Engine light wasn't on. I thought about checking it anyway...guess I should?
Well, we won't know that for certain until we give it a try

Certain Generic OBDII scanners may or may not show a code depending on the scanner but I say it's still worth a try.

What do you gotta loose?
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Old 05-10-2012, 04:39 PM
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Quote:
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First of all you should have the car scanned for codes. Without any concrete place to start you can guess yourself into the poor house and still not address the real issue.
THIS! Read that statement over and over. If you don't know what the codes are, then you are just tossing parts at it!

Sure, the brake light switch can cause the EPC light to come on. So can a blown fuse for the brake light switch. So can a bad throttle body. So can failed O2 sensors. So can a defective ECM. So can fretting of terminals. If tossing parts at a car was effective, there would be no need for automotive repair shops.
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Old 05-10-2012, 08:49 PM
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I'm going to scan it today and have a shop look at it on Saturday. However when the light came on today, I experimented and tried accelerating. Just a whir, no response not looking good. I'll post after I check the codes.
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Old 05-10-2012, 11:13 PM
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No codes. So...where to start now?

They used an OBD2 at Advance Auto.
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Old 05-11-2012, 03:02 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zypher View Post
I'm going to scan it today and have a shop look at it on Saturday. However when the light came on today, I experimented and tried accelerating. Just a whir, no response not looking good. I'll post after I check the codes.
So are you saying your pushing down of the accelerator didn't produce any results beside a whirring noise?
I thought there were no performance issues only the EPC light? Hmm, there are probably codes that the OBDII scanner isn't able to pick up. Do you have anyone in the area that has a Vag com? That should pick up the codes.

Have you tried to clean your throttle body and MAF sensor and checked for Vacuum leaks? However any of those items should have thrown a code even an OBDII scanner would pick up. Did they get a signal from the car? Perhaps there was a communications error.
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Old 05-12-2012, 06:30 PM
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Quote:
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So are you saying your pushing down of the accelerator didn't produce any results beside a whirring noise?
I thought there were no performance issues only the EPC light? Hmm, there are probably codes that the OBDII scanner isn't able to pick up. Do you have anyone in the area that has a Vag com? That should pick up the codes.

Have you tried to clean your throttle body and MAF sensor and checked for Vacuum leaks? However any of those items should have thrown a code even an OBDII scanner would pick up. Did they get a signal from the car? Perhaps there was a communications error.
I did not notice performance issues before the day I posted that, no.

Shop pulled codes P0321 and P0366. Any insight? Said $95 for electrical diagnostic. Repair could be $10 sensor or $1,000 repair.

Also $420 to replace front brake pads, rotors and flush brake fluid. Bushings are bad and lower control arm bushings need to be replaced and then do an alignment. $480.

Um...new car?
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Old 05-12-2012, 07:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zypher View Post
I did not notice performance issues before the day I posted that, no.

Shop pulled codes P0321 and P0366. Any insight? Said $95 for electrical diagnostic. Repair could be $10 sensor or $1,000 repair.

Also $420 to replace front brake pads, rotors and flush brake fluid. Bushings are bad and lower control arm bushings need to be replaced and then do an alignment. $480.

Um...new car?

Well, the P0321 is usually the Crankshaft positioning sensor and the P0366 is the Camshaft positioning sensor.

What the heck are they talking about $10 dollar sensor or $1000 dollar repair ??? Are they nuts?

Also I did my own brakes and purchased High Quality EBC Brake Rotors and pads for the front and rear for less than 200 bucks. Installation took me about 45 minutes per side. Well, actually a bit more since I painted the Calipers but it was a pretty easy straight forward job. So I would save the money and do it yourself. Also Lower Control arm bushings are about 40 bucks for the More Heavy Duty TT/R32 solid bushings. Don't replace them with the crappy stock kind that has holes and slits in the bushing. Actually you can get an entire front rebuilt kit with Control arms, ball joints and tie rods for about $134 bucks. An alignment will cost about 80 bucks and is necessary if you replace anything up front as far as suspension goes.

I would replace the Crankshaft positioning sensor as well as the Camshaft positioning sensor and see if those codes go away.





P0321 VOLKSWAGEN Description

Ignition failure sensor is used to check whether the spark ignition is occurred correctly or not and also used to tachometer drive. The sensor monitors the voltage difference between a resistance which is on the battery circuit for ignition coil. When the ignition coil works properly, the electric current through the resistance is detected as voltage drop. This is confirmed for every ignition event with the crankshaft sensor and the camshaft sensor. If ECM detects a malfunction, no ignition is possible, so the engine would not start. If there is no ignition signal for a predetermined cycle for one or two ignition coils, an ignition coil circuit failure exists.


P0366 VOLKSWAGEN Description

The Camshaft Position Sensor (CMP) is an electronic device used in an engine to record the rate at which the camshaft is spinning. This information is used by the Engine Control Module(ECM) to control ignition and fuel injection. The camshaft position sensor senses the retraction of camshaft (intake) to identify a particular cylinder. The camshaft position sensor senses the piston position. The sensor system consists of a rotating part, typically a disc, as well as a static part, the actual sensor.


When the engine is running, the high and low parts of the teeth cause the gap with the sensor to change. The changing gap causes the magnetic field near the sensor to change. The change in the magnetic field cause the voltage from the sensor to change.


When the crankshaft position sensor (POS) system becomes inoperative, the camshaft position sensor provides various controls of engine parts instead, utilizing timing of cylinder identification signals.
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Old 05-13-2012, 01:58 PM
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Hmm. The unfortunate news is I don't have a place to work, so I can't do any work on her myself.

The other perplexing news is that I had the crankshaft sensor replaced in October '11 when I couldn't get her to turn over. I would really hope it hasn't gone bad already.

I also am just looking at trading her in but the dealer is def. low balling me. $3500 trade in on a good condition beetle with low mileage? Pretty bad. Kelly Bluebook is $4900 for trade in with good condition. Maybe I'll sell her myself and try to fix the light first.
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Old 05-19-2012, 01:51 AM
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Got the dealer up to $4,500 and I'm letting her go tomorrow morning...

My VW guy said the O2 sensor was bad, but he wasn't seeing the usual symptoms that go along with the EPC light. The crankshaft code was being pulled but of course that was replaced last November.

I'm in tears over losing this car but it's time to move to something more reliable. I will never forget my first car...
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