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Thread: Knock sensor issue

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    Banned StarvingLion is a jewel in the rough StarvingLion's Avatar
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    Knock sensor issue

    Supposedly it is historically a problem on Rabbits. I don't like seeing techs randomingly replacing parts when the root source could be a software problem in the control unit. Good engineering in 2009 means instrumented control software that evolves without weird gremlins persisting. Sensor wear/various design flaws usually are removed with increasingly sophisticated updates of software. So the question is: if this problem is indeed historical why is it reoccuring and why is it still not well understood?

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    Quite.
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    This must be your first Volkswagen :D
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    LIFETIME VIP MEMBER mcsdude23 is a glorious beacon of light mcsdude23's Avatar
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    VWs tend to be equiped with shoty sensors and other parts from time to time because of a bad design, bad supplier, software problems, or a big **** up at the factory. That is why VW makes revised parts and usually fixes the problem. If you look back at the old mkiv they had problems with coilpacks, engine temp sensor, cat, PCV, diverter valve, and the list goes on. Now almost all those parts can be replaced with a revised version that wont have the same problems.
    Yeah I own a rabbit. How does it drive? I wouldnt be able to tell you.

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    What would you do. Car comes in with CEL. fault for G61 knock sensor. U do a test with the computer... 233e934574 times and it passes each time. You check wiring, it's fine. You check the sensor again, it's fine. You check things that may cause or imitate a knock sensor issue. What do you do?

    You replace the knock sensor. If the issue comes back you run an overlay harness. If it comes back you replace the ecm. If it comes back...then what? VW needs to take note of the problems and find the root cause. if it's software related they need to know how many cars affected, what vin range, and how to go about correcting it. TSB? Recall? RVU? Things like this may take time.

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    LIFETIME VIP MEMBER mcsdude23 is a glorious beacon of light mcsdude23's Avatar
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    These types of problems are not just specific to VWs either... even the Japanese car manufacturers have a long list of TSB, faulty parts and design flaws. For example, my infiniti G35 has a bad electric motor in the driver seat and I pulled up the TSB and found that my VIN is one of the affected cars with this problem.
    Last edited by mcsdude23; 04-08-2009 at 08:11 PM.
    Yeah I own a rabbit. How does it drive? I wouldnt be able to tell you.

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    Banned StarvingLion is a jewel in the rough StarvingLion's Avatar
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    Another knock sensor problem in a review at Edmunds.com

    2009 Volkswagen Rabbit S 2dr Hatchback (2.5L 5cyl 5M)

    Review

    I was looking for a little hatchback. I picked the Rabbit over the Mazda 3 and Imprezza because it was more fun driving, cost less, and is supposed to get a little better mileage. It also got great CR ratings. I've had four people in it a few times and there seems to be enough room. The car reminds me of the civic hatchbacks from the early 90s.

    Favorite Features

    It is pretty maneuverable and responsive like you expect from a little car, but it is really smooth on the highway.

    Suggested Improvements

    I just had the same problem a couple other people here reported. Just after turning over 600 miles the car started rev-limiting at 3000rpm. Then a couple miles later the check-engine light came on. The shop says the knock sensor needs to be replaced. Not a good sign for a 1 month old car.

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    Junior Member reever is a jewel in the rough reever's Avatar
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    At our dealership, I've had 3 rabbits with knock sensor faults. The first two, I ened up re-torquing the bolts for the knock sensors and the faults did not return. The last one had the MIL light on and would not rev over 3000 rpm to prevent engine damage. It needed one of the 2 sensors replaced. I would not call it a wide spread epidemic by any means. Even out of warranty the sensors are around $100. No big deal!

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    LIFETIME VIP MEMBER mcsdude23 is a glorious beacon of light mcsdude23's Avatar
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    I think it will probably be another TSB here soon.
    Yeah I own a rabbit. How does it drive? I wouldnt be able to tell you.

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    Banned StarvingLion is a jewel in the rough StarvingLion's Avatar
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    Well, if a customer brings in a car after 600 miles and re-torquing the bolts removes the faults then how can you assure me that after the next 600 miles or so I won't have to come in again to do the same thing?

    And the attitude that "we'll just keep replacing parts until the warranty expires" might explain why VW owners have a propensity to trade-in/sell the car when the warranty is up. Its not acceptable.

  11. #10
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    I agree, it needs (and will get) a permanent fix. We're hearing about this a lot just from people on this forum, which only represents a very small percentage of owners. It will absolutely have to be addressed. If a customer comes in with the problem 3 times (in most US states), it's considered a lemon. Rest assured, VW will fix it or will be buying a ton of cars back.
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    I'm pretty sure it has to do with a software thing. Remember the cats? Well the AEG/AVH engines blew through them like crazy and the warranty is until judgement day on them now. The 1.8T's now have software flashes to get rid of the cat code and the Vr6's also have software updates to make the ecm less picky about faulty cats. It's a brand new ecm and all new software. If I had to guess there might be a software update for correcting cold start knock sensor detection...then again that's just my guess lol.

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  13. #12
    LIFETIME VIP MEMBER mcsdude23 is a glorious beacon of light mcsdude23's Avatar
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    Just to clarify for those of you that arent familar with the mkiv's issues when it comes to cats as nitro spoke about above please read below:

    The warranty covers the catalytic converter on 1999 through 2001 vehicles which include the Golf, Jetta, and New Beetle models with 2.0 liter AEG engines. The emissions warranty will be extended from the current eight years or 80,000 miles to 10 years or 120,000 miles due to defects that can cause the ceramic material in the converter to rattle and erode over time. This could lead to exhaust emission levels above the federal and state emission standards

    An application problem exists which is associated
    with the location of the oxygen sensor in certain MY
    1999 through 2001 2.0L engines.
    The pre-oxygen sensor is mounted in the exhaust manifold, and under certain cold and damp ambient conditions, thermal shock can take place, cracking the internal ceramic element of the oxygen sensor. Remedy: VW will check the vehicle's emission control system for proper function, reset electronically the engine's control module and replace the oxygen sensor, if necessary
    Yeah I own a rabbit. How does it drive? I wouldnt be able to tell you.

  14. #13
    Junior Member reever is a jewel in the rough reever's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by StarvingLion View Post
    Well, if a customer brings in a car after 600 miles and re-torquing the bolts removes the faults then how can you assure me that after the next 600 miles or so I won't have to come in again to do the same thing?

    And the attitude that "we'll just keep replacing parts until the warranty expires" might explain why VW owners have a propensity to trade-in/sell the car when the warranty is up. Its not acceptable.
    Well, the knock sensors are very sensitive to correct bolt torque, it has to be exactally 15 Nm. If someone at the wolfsburg plant had a torque wrench that needed to be calibrated, there's a batch of 'problem' cars.

    Poor fuel quality could also set knock control faults as well.

  15. #14
    Junior Member dubVdub is a jewel in the rough dubVdub's Avatar
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    Knock sensor has been giving me problems on my 09...
    09 UG Rabbit

  16. #15
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    We have been replacing them, and customers are not coming back. So it seems like its just a bad batch of sensors thus far......

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    Junior Member reever is a jewel in the rough reever's Avatar
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    I haven't seen a bad knock sensor in about 4 months now.

  18. #17
    Junior Member dubVdub is a jewel in the rough dubVdub's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nitroscope8 View Post
    We have been replacing them, and customers are not coming back. So it seems like its just a bad batch of sensors thus far......
    Well they are replacing mine on Monday...I hope that will be it and I wont be back!
    09 UG Rabbit

  19. #18
    Junior Member dubVdub is a jewel in the rough dubVdub's Avatar
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    The knock sensor was replaced and the issue seemed to be fixed but now almost a month later my problem persists. It seems to happen when it is raining but could just be a coincidence. The MIL light comes on everytime it happens and it doesn't like to shift from 3rd to 4th, I have to force it into 4th with tip mode. Any ideas?
    09 UG Rabbit

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    Re: Knock sensor issue

    My Rabbit is at the dealer for the fourth failure of the knock sensors in 18 months.

    Same symptoms each time - cold or damp weather - car won't rev above 3,000 rpm. Dealer is now replacing both knock sensors and the wiring harness. Very frustrating.

  21. #20
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    Re: Knock sensor issue

    And these sensors seem to fail most on 2009's....interesting. First year of the new quad core cpu ECM.

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