Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Passat B5 Door Card Removal

As usual VW don't do things by halves and the door cards are no exception. The door card is straight forward and I will show the removal with photos to guide. The inner skin however is not the usual plastic sheet held in place with a bit of sticky, these have a metal plate held in place by 10mm bolts instead. I will cover the plate in a seperate blog.  View my about.me page here!

Tools required:

I have used a rear door card to remove as an example although the proceedure for the drivers and front passenger are almost the same.  There is no need to worry about switches or speakers as the door card comes away with all the covers intact.

Firstly you will need to prise out the plastic cover over the inner door handle which conceals the two main screws that need to be removed.  If you look to the inner side of the door handle right at the point where the plastic and the door card trim meet you may just about see the leverage point (see the second picture below).  Place a small flat blade screw driver into the join and prise the plastic cover out from one corner.  You may need a second screw driver to prise the plastic while the first holds the gap.

Now remove the torx bolt at the bottom of the door card located in the centre and is held in place with a T15 torx bolt.

Now you can unclip the door card using your fingers starting from the bottom.  If you are unable to get the card to come away then a flat blade screwdriver strategically positioned will do the job.  Be careful not to damage the door card or metal work if you use a screwdriver.  As you pull the door card you will hear the clips pop as they break free, you will not cause any damage so don't worry here.  From the bottom pull the door card out slowly and carefully, you may not break the clips but you can break the door card if you are too rough.  Once you can feel the clips have free'd you will need to lift the door card upwards to free it from the door lock nib and the window seal that the card sits over.  Now hold the card and keep it close to the framework as you still have all the internal electric connections attached.  

Unplug the puddle light connector and window switch.  The final part to remove is the inner door handle wire.  To do this I found it easiest to look into the door card through the window from the outside so you can clearly see the wire.  It only needs to be pulled back slightly and it will come away from the plastic guide, then you can lift out the hook that connects to the back of the inner door handle.  Now it will be free the door card can be put to one side.

If removing a front door card there is no need to pull away the wing mirrors internal cover as it does not get in the way and the proceedure remains the same and even the plastic holding clips are the same.  When refitting the door card the process is the reverse of the above guide.  When the door card is in place but not fitted take a look along the sides of the door card to make sure the clips line up with the locking points on the door frame as this is where you can end up breaking the clips off if not careful.  Use the palm of your hand or back of your fist to press down where each clip sits so you can hear it pop back into place.

Here is a picture of the rear door minus the door card but with the metal plate in place.  As you can see all the components sit on the plate and not the back of the door card trim which makes things a little easier when taking the card off.  However the metal plate cover holds in place the window mechanism and electric motor so I will remove it and document it at a later date.

If you find my information useful please feel free to make any comments.  Thanks.

Thursday, 11 November 2010

Passat B5 Exhaust System

The Passat B5 exhaust system is made up of three main parts so unless the whole system needs changing it shouldn't be a big expense when a section starts to blow and needs replacing.  Have a look at the information below and the exhaust diagram.  I have included several links for information purposes but the first place you should go is to a local exhaust fitter for a quote.

Starting from the engine end check the exhaust manifold and cylinder head for any leaks of exhaust gas.  The gaskets between the parts can and will wear over time from the constant expansion and contraction of the heat from the system.

With the engine running listen for any hissing or popping sounds as you can often identify the location of the leak this way.  Look for any discolouration or burns from the heat near the exhaust ports on the cylinder head.

Inspect the area that connects the head pipe and exhaust manifold as the movement from the engine caused by drive torque can lead to movement at the joint where these meet.  Look out for any indicators of discolouration from any escaped exhaust gases.

Look along the exhaust pipe system from under the car as you may be able to identify any damage or corrosion.  Place the palm of your hand over the tailpipe with the engine running and listen for any changes in the engine sound.  The suffocation should force the engine to drop in revs and change the sound, if there is no difference with your palm covering the exit pipe then there is clearly a hole or break somewhere in the exhaust.

If you still cannot find the cause of the fault then speak to a mechanic or local exhaust fitter and ask them to read your engine intake manifold vacuum as low readings will indicate a blockage.  But don't get caught out with a big repair bill as the components of the exhaust system are not very expensive.  Check the system reference below.

System reference 930691

321338..........CAT. EuroCar + FR Pipe.....£119.47 + vat
380213..........CAT. MetalCat + FR Pipe....£63.83 + vat
401659..........CAT. Fix Kit..........................£2.26 + vat
SYA10..........Clamps.................................£0.91 + vat
SYA23..........Clamps.................................£0.74 + vat
VAG4............Gaskets................................£1.48 + vat
VAR34..........Rubber Mounting..................£1.48 + vat
VAR36..........Rubber Mounting..................£2.09 + vat
VW465C.......Box + Tail Pipe....................£54.84 + vat
VW466B.......Box + Centre Pipe...............£120.06 + vat

Have a look at my hubpage for my experience with my Passat exhaust problem - 

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Wednesday, 10 November 2010

Passat B5 Gear Knob Removal

All manufacturers have different methods for attaching a gear knob and gear gaiter.  The VW variant is very simple and requires no tools to remove.  As is not dependant on lifting the gear knob to engage reverse gear any type of upgrade or replacement can be used.  Most aftermarket heads will fit on in minutes with no modification necessary.

Start by prising the back of the gear gaiter which should just clip off, then do the same for the front and the gaiter should come free completely.  Lift the gaiter so it sits by the neck of the gear knob and simply unscrew it by the head anticlockwise.  Do not pull upwards as you may detatch the gear lever linkage from underneath.  If you need to seperate the gaiter leather from the gear knob itself now is the time as it is held in place with a circular plastic barrel and can just pull off.

To refit simply turn the gear gaiter fully inside out and holding by the gearknob place over the gear lever screw thread and screw on clockwise until the gear knob is tightly fitted and the correct way around.  Don't push down on the outer gear gaiter as you want to leave the leather sitting up slightly which makes it look fresh and nice, if you push down on the gaiter leather you can sink it completely and it will look worn and tired by comparison.

Feedback and comments welcome.  
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Passat B5 Fusebox Location

Blowing a fuse is not an expensive repair but if you don't know how to access your fusebox you can end up spending unnecessary money at a garage to do something that would take seconds to do yourself.  The Passat uses standard sized fuses and are clearly labelled on the accompanying fusecard if you have one, if not don't worry as I have pictures below.

If you blow a fuse but don't have a owners manual you may be left scratching your head looking for the fuse box as VW have integrated it and hidden it very well.  Open the drivers door and at the side of the dash you will notice a plastic cover.  Using either a flat blade screw driver or if you are careful your fingers prise the curved part of the cover and pull forwards.  As well as pictures of the fuse box I have also added some of the fuse location card which obviously won't be present in all cars.  Have a look at the pictures below as they do all the talking.

The fusecard lists the function and position for each fuse and contains information on both sides.  It is located on the inside of the fusebox cover.  Here is the card for your reference.

Feedback and comments welcome.
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Sunday, 7 November 2010

Passat B5 Modifications

Here is my list of recommended modifications and upgrades for the Volkswagen Passat B5 including web links and contacts.  As an enthusiast and owner this is like a wish list and many of the suggestions on this page have been done myself already or are in the pipe line of changes I intend to make.  If anyone has any new ideas or suggestions please feel welcome to post a comment and I will add it in.

Exterior Mods


I have always used 'the plate man' for my first Euro styling mod when doing up a VW or BMW and find this supplier very good.  They offer 100% authentic metal pressed Euro and German number plates from Celle Germany (pressed in the same factories that supply the European Motor Industry).  I have never personally had a problem with these plates although technically they are illegal so may cause a problem with a picky policeman or MOT tester, but if you have any reservations then try Dubmeister who offer guaranteed UK legal plates complete with the all important BSAU145D stamp.


Alloy wheels always come down to personal preference but I think that keeping things OE are a always a good way to go, but if you prefer something different why not go the euro way with wider deep dish rims and a nice drop on the suspension to compliment the look.  Personally I think that lowering the suspension should be the next consideration after alloy wheels as often the standard ride hight can make your nice new wheels look incomplete.  My recommendations for alloy wheels for the B5 Passat are the Schmidt TH or BBS RS or for a nice classy look go with a set of Maybach rims.


When it comes to suspension you have two main choices, springs alone or full coilover setup.  This decision is usually made by your wallet as a set of lowering springs around 40mm will cost about £110 whereas a full coilover set starts from around £225.  However unless you are fitting yourself you will also have to take into account the fitting costs which is usually around £100-£150 to fit springs and around £100 for a full coilover set.  The springs are more expensive to have fitted as the existing suspension struts have to be dismantled for the new springs to go on, and it can be a dangerous undertaking as compressed springs are not fun to work with.  Personally I feel that as long as your existing dampers are in good health then only a set of springs need be added.  A quick way to test your suspension damper is to push down on one corner of your car and see how it bounces.  It should only bounce back once and then level, if it feels very easy to push down on or bounces several times then you might as well push the boat out and buy coilovers.

Body upgrades

VW really got the look of the Passat right when they built it but there are a few changes that are worth considering if the budget allows.  My favorite body mod for these cars is R32 style bumpers.  The front bumper has a much more agressive motorsport look about it and does make a big difference.  If the budget is tight then you can totally transform the appearance of your car by painting all the black plastic parts around the bumpers and skirts black again which not only makes it look fresh but also gives a subtle modified look.  The other main area for change is the badgeless front grille, again its down to taste but I don't really like the mesh grille as you can see straight through it and from afar looks like the grille is missing.


Lighting upgrades can be an expense but will totally transform the front end of the Passat.  Halo rings are a bit last year but still look nice if they are CCFL quality rather than just a set of cheap LED's which are never bright enough, but again saying that some of the newer style LED light units look amazing.  I think the best look is the black chrome, a look you can achieve yourself at home.  I will be posting a guide for this modification soon so keep checking this page.

Interior Mods


Being a four door saloon the options for aftermarket seats is quite varied as you don't need to worry about the seats having to tilt forward as you would with a two door car, this also makes the fixed seats a little cheaper.  Thankfully my interior is the charcoal velour which looks nice and is very hard wearing, however if I was unfortunate enough to have bought a Passat with the light grey interior things would be different.  Seats are readily available and can be bought with or without the mounting frame which gives even more availability.

Gear knobs & gaiters

Changing the gear knob and gaiter is a five minute job and refreshes the interior to no end.  The gaiter is usually the first thing to wear from the constant use and a scruffy one will make the car look scruffy.  There are hundreds of aftermarket ones available with the cheapest on places like eBay.  The gear knob is attached to the gaiter but is removeable and simply screws into place so any knob should go.  My preference is always either Momo or Isotta when it comes to gear knobs and steering wheels and there is lots of choice, but in this case I opted for a knob and gaiter from a newer model which avoided the situation of having to modify unnecessarily.  Have a look at my guide on how to remove the gear knob and gear gaiter -> -> click here.


To me the most important feature is the audio.  A good quality headunit will radically improve the sound quality of the existing factory fitted speakers which is often overlooked by the boy racer who upgrades the speakers first.  I have an Alpine headunit in my Passat but there are so many brands to chose from.  The only real consideration you need make is to try and buy a headunit with the best matched illumination to your dash guages.  A few manufacturers specialised in colour matching the bluey purple of the Passat but I never saw any top end varieties.  My second consideration when buying a headunit is that I prefer a dot matrix display over the old calculator looking digits.  Dot matrix will allow any combination of pixels so can easily produce images as well as defined text and numbers.  Finally make sure you buy a stereo with MP3 playback and with an AUX input as well as phono connectors for an amp should you want one at a later stage.


Engine Mods


Air induction kits

Chips & remaps

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Saturday, 6 November 2010

Passat B5 Blog, Forum & Web Links

This is a compliled list of my favorite forums, blog links and useful web sites for all things Passat.  If you have a VW blog page please post a comment with your URL and I will be happy to add it to the list.  Im always on the look out for new sites so if you have a favorite not listed here let me know.  I will keep adding sites and links as I find them.

Forum Links

Passat World Forum
VW Audi Forum
UK Passats
Volkswagen Forum
Club GTi Volkswagen Chat

Favorite Blog Links


Feedback and comments welcome.
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Friday, 5 November 2010

Passat B5 Specifications

The Passat introduced a new design language, first seen on the Concept 1 concept car, for the latest generation of Volkswagens such as the Mk4 Golf, Bora and Polo Mk4. The smooth lines, heavily raked windscreens, and smooth underpinnings helped give the B5 Passat an low coefficient of drag, rated at 0.27 (saloon model).


Manufacturer Volkswagen Passenger Cars
Production 1996–2000
Assembly Emden & Mosel/Zwickau, Germany
Class Large family car / Mid-size car
Body style(s) 4-door saloon/sedan
5-door estate/wagon
Layout Front engine,
front-wheel drive or
four-wheel drive
Platform Volkswagen Group B5
Petrol engines:
1.8 L I4 ADR/APT 20v
1.8 L I4 AEB/APU/ANB 20v Turbo
2.0 L I4 AUZ
2.3 L VR5 AGZ
2.8 L V6 ACK/APR 30v

Diesel engines:
1.9 L I4 AVB TDI
2.5 L V6 AFB TDI
Transmission(s) 5-speed manual
5-speed 5HP19 automatic
6-speed manual
Wheelbase 106.4 in (2703mm)
Length 184.1 in (4676mm)(saloon)
183.8 in (4669mm)(estate)
Width 68.5 in (1740mm)
Height 57.4 in (1458mm)(saloon)
59 in (1499mm)(estate)
Kerb weight 1,406 kg (3,100 lb)
Related Audi A4

Performance Information

1.6 8v Engine ADP/ AHL/ ARM/ ANA
0 - 100km/h - 12.5s
top speed - 192km/h 119mph
power - 100 PS (74 kW; 99 hp) @5300 rpm
torque - 140 N·m (100 lb·ft) @3800 rpm

1.8 20v Engine ADR/ APT/ AVV/ ARG
0 - 100 km/h - 11.1s
top speed - 206 km/h 128 mph
power - 125 PS (92 kW; 123 hp) @5800 rpm
torque - 168 N·m (124 lb·ft) @3500 rpm

1.8 20v Turbo Engine AEB/ APU/ ANB/ ATW/ AUG
0 - 100 km/h - 8.9s
top speed - 223 km/h 139 mph
power - 150 PS (110 kW; 150 hp) @5700 rpm
torque - 210 N·m (150 lb·ft) @1750–4600 rpm

2.0 8v Engine AUZ/ ASU/ AVA
0 - 100 km/h -11.1s
top speed - 203 km/h 126 mph
power - 120 PS (88 kW; 120 hp) @5600 rpm
torque - 175 N·m (129 lb·ft) @2600 rpm

2.3 10v v5 Engine AGZ
0 - 100 km/h - 8.9s
top speed - 223 km/h 139 mph
power - 150 PS (110 kW; 150 hp) @6000 rpm
torque - 205 N·m (151 lb·ft) @3200 rpm

2.8 30v v6 Engine ACK/ APR
0 - 100 km/h - 7.7s
top speed - 238 km/h 148 mph
power - 193 PS (142 kW; 190 hp) @6000 rpm
torque - 280 N·m (210 lb·ft) @3200 rpm

Wheel Fitment

Wheel PCD 5x112
bore 57.1


  • 1999 Used Car Buyer Greatest Used Buy Awards — Most Sensible Car Award Overall & Best Family Car
  • 1999 Auto Express New Car Honours — Best Family Car
  • 1998 What Car? Car of Cars — Best Medium Car
  • 1998 Which? Magazine Best Buy — Large family car market winner

Thursday, 4 November 2010

Passat B5 Engine Service

Getting your car serviced even at a back street garage costs a fortune these days, yet its such a simple proceedure and not half as expensive as you would think.  No major special tools required and the servicing parts themselves are cheap when sourced correctly.  If you haven't tried it yet have a go and be your own service technician and give yourself a pay rise.

Tools required:


I think its always best to work from the cleanest job through to the dirtiest last, so to begin with the first and easiest thing to do is the air filter, located on the left side of the engine bay.  Simply unclip the surrounding metal clips that hold the air filter cover in place and sealed.  Lift the cover up slightly to allow the old air filter to be removed.  If you struggle to get access you can remove the air pipe that the filter cover is attached to and replace with a jubilee clip afterwards.  I always take this opportunity to vac out the airbox to remove any debris that has built up.  Simply slot the new air filter in place of the old one ensuring the fins are face down and the rubber seal meets up with the surround of the airbox.  Reattach and reclip the cover in place.


Now remove the main engine cover which has screws to hold it in place.  A good thick flat head screw driver is best so as not to damage the plastic screws.  You will see two of the spark plug HT leads and a large coil pack which covers the other two.  Working from the closest plug remove the HT lead holding the rubber cover securely it will just pop off.  Now using a 10mm spark plug wrench or socket set which should have the right parts turn anticlockwise until its completely free.  Don't worry if the plug feels tight when trying to undo as the heat from the engine can cause them to lock up.  Fit the new plug and if doing an oil change take a small drop of oil and rub onto the new plug thread.  Carefully tighten by hand ensuring the plug has correctly lined up as you don't want to end up threading the hole as this will be an expensive repair.  Finally tighten with the wrench until it feels tight, you won't need to burst a blood vessel here so don't over tighten.  Replace the HT lead pushing down on the head to make full contact.  Repeat the process for the other visible plug.  Now using a torx head remove the bolts holding the coil pack in place.  Lift off and you will see the other two spark plugs which can be replaced with the above method.


Now for the dirty part of the service and a good time to put on some latex gloves.  The best way to tackle this job is to jack the car on the corner where the sump plug sits under the engine lump so not only can you get clear access but also the oil will drain to the corner and get more of any sediment build up.  Now open the oil cap on top of the engine.  I always slacken the sump plug first just incase there is a problem and it wont come off after Ive started.  The sump plug can be removed with a 17mm socket head.  Place an oil basin under the sump plug and oil filter to catch all the dirty old oil.  Now fully undo the sump plug and place it to one side as it should be reusable.  Undo the oil filter using the oil filter wrench but if it refuses to budge you can stick a flat blade screw driver into it which usually gets it loose.  Remove the filter by hand once loose enough.  After all the oil has drained out and this can take some time, refit the sump plug and tighten.  Smear a little oil on the new oil filters rubber surround and threaded hole to allow a good fit and retighten by hand in place of the old one.  Once hand tight get a cloth and wrap it round the filter to give it a little tighten further.  Its always recommended to check the oil filter a day or so after fitting to make sure you can't hand tighten it any more as you don't want it to come loose while driving.  Now slowly top up the engine oil, any spillages are best cleaned up immediately with an old cloth otherwise you will have the smell of it burning off the engine block for a few days.  I usually fill half the oil first and then check the dip stick adding small amounts with each check.  Always reseat the dip stick fully before looking at the level.  Do not over fill and when the stick reads just over half way stop.  Refit the engine oil cap and give the engine a run then recheck the oil level on the dip stick and top up as required, three quarters is always more than enough.  Also make sure the dip stick is tightly seated in place as any air getting in can affect how the engine runs.

To my knowledge the two HT leads and the coil pack only need to be changed if found faulty and should last many years on these cars.  If you think there is a problem consult your dealer or a specialist.  I will add photos shortly.


1.6 Litre Engine:
Spark Plugs Set Ngk - x4 BKUR6ET-10
NEW O.E Quality Coopers Panel Air Filter
K&N Air Filter 33-2125
NEW O.E Quality Coopers Spin-On Oil Filter
CASTROL EDGE 5W-40 Synthetic Engine Oil 4 Litre

1.8 Litre 20v Engine:
Spark Plugs Set Ngk - x4 PFR6Q
NEW O.E Quality Coopers Panel Air Filter
Pipercross Performance Air Filter - PP1443
NEW O.E Quality Coopers Spin-On Oil Filter
CASTROL EDGE 5W-40 Synthetic Engine Oil 4 Litre

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