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    Thread: Automatic Transmission slips when cold

    1. 07-25-2005 02:14 AM #1
      Hello,
      I have a 1999 Jetta IV, with the regular 2.0L engine. When I first turn on the car, and put the car into drive or reverse, the transmission often slips, and often revs out without actually pulling the car for a couple of seconds. This same behaviour will happen here and there within the first 5-10 minutes of driving ... when the car is warmed up, the problem goes away. When the car is still cold, it'll slip and catch sometimes when moving off, and between 1st and 2nd gear.

      I called my local VW dealership to ask about the transmission fluid, and they said that it was a lifetime fluid, and wouldn't need to be changed. What can I do to fix this? Is this a sign that my transmission might soon need replacing, or does it just need some maintenance? Would would you recommend? The car has almost 190,000 km on it.

      Any advice would be much appreciated.


    2. Moderator Lasrsktr's Avatar
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      07-25-2005 02:19 AM #2
      unfortunatley.... mines done this since new... and i get the same ****. Its normal is what they tell me. and now 40k later... its still running... albiet i know its not normal...
      2002 Jetta GLS Reflex Silver still 2.slooooow

    3. 07-25-2005 02:23 AM #3
      dont worry about it ... my 2003 325i did it, and now my 2005 Jetta 2.0 does it ...

      must be a german thing ...


    4. 07-27-2005 12:21 PM #4
      Thats crazy! When I bought the car used it had 132,000 km on it, and it never did this. Is it true that the transmission fluid is a lifetime fluid? Should I look into changing it?

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      07-27-2005 12:39 PM #5
      if the slipping goes away when it gets warm/operating temp..and comes back when the trans is cold, then I would say it's low on fluid...

      it being a "lifetime" or non-serviceable tranny, I'm not sure what can be done...Contact a local reputable tranny shop, or VW tech and get their feedback....


    6. 07-27-2005 12:40 PM #6
      Try the Automatic Transmission Forum too...

      http://forums.vwvortex.com/zeroforum?id=574


    7. Member PhReE's Avatar
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      07-27-2005 12:49 PM #7
      Yeah "Lifetime" means it will work until the warranty runs out. Change that fuild !! I bet it will work 100x better. The only problem is finding someone to do it because VW dealers wont (they say its lifetime, which if you read the threads in the auto tranny forum it is total BS.)
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    8. 08-04-2005 01:53 PM #8
      I called my local VW dealer, and they said they'd check it out, but it'd cost me about $200 CDN, since they'd have to wait until the fluid got to the right temperature to check it. Then, they said that I might as well change the fluid since i'm servicing it. I guess it makes sense to check to see if that was the problem, but still feel ripped off somehow.

      Anyhoo ... I might take it in to get it done to see if it'll fix things. Thanks for all of your responses.


    9. 08-05-2005 01:51 AM #9
      Your tranny sliping gears is not normal. Replace your fluid but if that doesnt works then maybe you will need to service the tranny. The tranny uses pressure operated valves and pistons to shifts gears, the pressure comes from the fluid in the tranny. If the problem dissapears when the tranny is hot its maybe because the fluid has lost its low-temp flow properties.
      With normal use the valves and piston tend to wear-out, maybe just a simple "service kit" could resolve your problem

    10. 08-05-2005 02:37 AM #10
      Quote, originally posted by acheong »
      Hello,
      I have a 1999 Jetta IV, with the regular 2.0L engine. When I first turn on the car, and put the car into drive or reverse, the transmission often slips, and often revs out without actually pulling the car for a couple of seconds. This same behaviour will happen here and there within the first 5-10 minutes of driving ... when the car is warmed up, the problem goes away. When the car is still cold, it'll slip and catch sometimes when moving off, and between 1st and 2nd gear.

      I called my local VW dealership to ask about the transmission fluid, and they said that it was a lifetime fluid, and wouldn't need to be changed. What can I do to fix this? Is this a sign that my transmission might soon need replacing, or does it just need some maintenance? Would would you recommend? The car has almost 190,000 km on it.

      Any advice would be much appreciated.

      I got this at 97K miles, and they replaced my transmission 3k before the warranty ran out! Yes! It was pretty severe and dangerous, though 2.5-3K revs to get it to catch, then ZOOM! Be fast with the brake... amusing in grocery parking lots...




      Modified by xorbe at 7:38 AM 8-5-2005


    11. 11-22-2005 09:30 PM #11
      Its been a while since I posted here, but I have recently changed my tranmission fluid and the filter and the transmission still slips. The car drives a little better, but the problem is definitely still there.

      The mechanic said that it wasn't low on fluid and there were no visible leaks. He said that changing the fluid might not fix this problem ... and thats exactly what it didn't do ... fix this problem!

      What else could be causing this?


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      11-22-2005 09:32 PM #12
      Have you bothered to check the tranny fluid level yet?

    13. Member rookdubdoc's Avatar
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      11-22-2005 09:47 PM #13
      I hear this concern constantly when the weather starts to turn cold. The transmission DOES have a hesitate before moving when cold. That is how they are designed. Yes, designed. It was explained to me by a high ranking, technical rep for VW that even that slight time that the transmission is not active, it is getting the fluid moving more and quicker to proper operating pressure and temp. The delay is built into the programming of the ECM and TCM (transmission control module). Now, some vehicles have a more noticable delay. No question there. I drive hundreds of VW's a week and about a 1/3 are very noticable. Don't worry about it, as long as it is only when cold and it goes away after a short time, you will be fine.

      As far as changing the fluid....since the mid 90's, VW transmissions have been "sealed" Meaning no dipstick to check the level, hopefully helping to keep contaminents out. There IS synthetic fluid from the factory. It IS servicable, and does require the temp of the trans to be at a certain amount. I only recommend people to change their fluid if they are over 100K and/or they start to experience slipping.

      Quote Originally Posted by OGSDUB View Post
      13 years of parochial schools over here. Knowing me one would never figure that.

    14. 11-24-2005 02:19 PM #14
      My transmission slips sometimes even after 10-15 minutes of driving, well after the point where the engine has warmed up totally ... i'm using this as my judgement point.

      If I were to have the car on a slight incline when its cold, and put in drive, it would roll back and move forward, roll back and move forward ... and it could do this roll back and grab for more than a couple minutes, moving forward about a foot and a half, and then rolling back. I don't see how this could be by design, as it never did this before. There must be some other problems with the transmission.

      The fluid put back in was VW's synthetic fluid, and it didn't seem to fix much at all.

      Any other ideas?


    15. 11-24-2005 02:23 PM #15
      oh yes ... the fluid level with the new fluid is fine. The mechanic said the level was fine before as well.

    16. 11-30-2005 03:37 PM #16
      Sooooooooo ... any ideas? Anyone? Does it need major repairs?

    17. 11-30-2005 04:08 PM #17
      I've been trying to research this problem with my 2.0 auto jetta also. Always when cold, it will not engage in drive until a few seconds after the brake is released, and sometimes I need to press the gas a little then it grabs with a jerk and moves forward. This slip and jerk also happens sometimes between gears. Not every day, but when it does, it continues with each shift. What I have found is that stopping the car, turning it off and back on will always correct this problem for the day, but it will recur again in a few days. However, the initial hesitaion and jerk in the morning when first put into drive always occurs, and does seem to be much worse the colder the weather is. Like a lot of people said, it seems to be the design of these cars, and individual cars exhibit this to different degrees. Yours (acheong) sounds like one of the worse ones, but apparently there is no fix for it. If you do find something, let us know, as I do understand how annoying it can be!

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      12-05-2005 10:40 AM #18
      I just wanted to add to this thread a bit...

      my wifes car ('02 auto 2.0, just turned 40k) often has a 6-10 second delay prior to going into gear when its cold... I had a friend of mine at the dealer (technician I used to work with) check it out and he said it was normal, and mine was even a little better than average... He checked the fluid level and it was okay.

      I have a copy of a technical bulletin explaining the delay, but I don't have it with me... I don't really care for it, I've had mkII and MKIII auto trannys puke on me, but apparrently (as stated above) the delay is normal... thankfully it isn't slipping while in gear or shifting.


    19. 07-18-2006 10:12 PM #19
      Sorry ... I didn't realize that there were responses here. I was wondering if you had a copy of that bulletin vw_nick, or if you can direct me to it on the web somewhere.

      I am thinking of finding a used tranny at a junk yard as the problem hasn't seemed to get any better in the summer months.


    20. 05-14-2014 07:01 AM #20
      Hi I have the same problem that you are having. Did you ever get your issue resolved?

    21. Member sommersprossen's Avatar
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      05-14-2014 11:54 AM #21
      almost 8yr old thread bump you might wanna check out the technical forum section under the automatic trans section for more info/luck
      #294 VRalliance gimme that. sorry for yelling, but Im serious. we gotta start bein more responsible and focused alright? to be sharp.

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