96 VW passat VR6


Old 05-25-08, 11:03 AM
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Join Date: May 2008
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Unhappy 96 VW passat VR6

Why does my 96 VW passat VR6 automatic transmission not shift unless you manually shift it?
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Old 05-25-08, 03:20 PM
HotxxxxxxxOKC's Avatar
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I'm not a pro at trannies, but I know the TCM, transmission control module, controls everything related to shifting. I would start by bringing the vehicle by the dealer so they can hook up their scan tools.
Old 05-31-08, 07:57 PM
Join Date: May 2008
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These cars sometimes have a problem with water damage to the transmission control unit. I can't recall positively if your model is one of them, but many VW products of the past ~15 years have the transmission control unit fastened to the floor of the car underneath the carpet underneath the passenger front seat. Any issues with the water drainage ducts for rain water and air conditioning condensation will cause water to build up in the exact area of the control unit. I've seen it sometimes where the floor seems perfectly dry, but when starting to remove the control unit cover a quart of water pours out. Of course water and electronics don't mix well and all sorts of strange symptoms have been seen in my shop.

The suggestion to visit the dealer is a good one as they can use thier scan tools, but also be aware that many independant VW shops have Vag-Com software (ross-tech.com) that is equivalent to the equipment the dealer uses. You may try http://vagcomlocator.com/ to find someone in your area with the laptop-run software and Vag-Com cable that connects to your car.
Old 05-31-08, 09:00 PM
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Location: Northeastern PA.
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independant VW shops
Just a note......Keyword here is "VW".....

The kid at the parts store with his handheld Pocket scanner does you absolutely no Good. Many independant shops will even "Shy away " from These vehicles because of the Manufacturer specific tools and equipment. Wherever you take the vehicle, Make sure beforehand that they are capable of giving you a sound and reliable answer for your "SPECIFIC" vehicle.
Old 05-31-08, 09:35 PM
Join Date: May 2008
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That is absolutely true, and specifically why I mentioned the Vag-Com diagnostic tool. Vag-com is a VW and Audi (VAG = Volkswagen AG, who also owns Audi) specific scan tool that can go far beyond universal code readers that the average shop and parts store will have. Having used both the Vag-com and the factory tools it is my opinion that the Vag-Com is far better then the VAG-1551 scan tool that the dealership uses. Any shop that is serious about VW's will have Vag-Com, and I would suggest taking the effort to find such a shop in your area.

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