Filled my '02 Passat up a few weeks ago and later smelled gas in a parking lot when I walked up to it. Thought it was another car, drove quite a bit, didn't smell it again. Later filled up again, walked into the garage in the morning, couldn't believe the vapors. Issue was only when tank was more than 1/2 - 3/4 full. Indy mechanic told me one of the 3 vent tubes on top had cracked, but can't be repaired as it's integrated into the tank, must replace tank (~$2,100). He spoke with my aftermarket warranty, but they were reluctant to pony up.
I called my warranty, and they weren't opposed to approving the repair, but their labor manual says this should take less than 5 hours, mechanic is saying 9+. I'm told you have to drop entire rear end on 4Motion for this, and think they aren't seeing all the other operations. I then called 3 separate dealers and confirmed 8-10 hours at all of them for the repair (which includes 4-wheel alignment). One of them I spoke to asked why I would need a fuel tank replaced (strange request) and asked if I was smelling gas. We talked about my problem and he said they're seeing a lot of these lately on Passats, and my indy said he is, too (also A6s). Told me regional VW rep was covering these for customers. I have almost 82k on the clock, so this surprised me. Called VWoA, they hadn't heard anything about this and weren't too interested in helping.
Not too keen on taking business away from my indy, but not having to do the aftermarket warranty rep's job for him to prove repair will indeed take longer doesn't seem much fun, and he's obviously not listening to my mechanic. Other two dealers hadn't heard of VW covering this either, but honestly seemed less informed. I called the other dealer back, gave him my VIN and he confirmed the regional VW guy would cover entire repair, to the tune of ~$3,200.
What do you guys think? Anybody else had a similar experience lately? I found only one other thread relating to this ( http://forums.vwvortex.com/zerothread?id=2995613), but was almost a year ago & was for W8 - same tank?