94 VW Jetta lost something with tubes


Old 07-28-10, 02:42 PM
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Join Date: Nov 2009
Location: Maryland, USA
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94 VW Jetta lost something with tubes

Hi, I’m a newbie here on the car forum and I know next to nothing about cars but here’s my situation:

My 4 Cly, 2.0L, 94 VW Jetta 4-door sedan, manual tranny is a POS (Piece of, um, Scrap) car, except that the engine has always run well for the 5 years I’ve had it; so I'd like to hang onto it awhile longer.

A few days ago, it would start right up but immediately die as soon as it started.

Long story short, I found a local mechanic on Craig’s List who made house calls and when he came out and tried to start it, I saw a wisp of smoke to the rear of the engine that drew my eye to a fragment of something that was broken and obviously missing--or mostly missing.

What was left is part of a broken housing that connects two hoses, one to the rear ( upper right side of the rear) of the shiny engine top with the big “2.0” indented on it, and the other hose went to the air intake housing. Whatever it is that’s missing had some shreds of oil-soaked foamy material that must have been a filter, and my trunk-slamming mechanic thought there might have been some valve involved in there too.

According to him, what was causing the engine to die was the now-open tube to the air intake assembly letting in air instead of maintaining the vacuum that assembly needs where it feeds. Hope that makes sense.

He did a temporary “fix” by using the remnants of the broken part to connect the engine tube directly to the air intake ass’y tube and it started right up and runs okay. Obviously, with the filter-plus-whatever-else missing, I don’t want to drive it too much, but I drove the ten miles or so to the nearest NAPA store. Did I mention I live out in the sticks?

The engine/parts drawing/diagram the NAPA guy and I looked at on his computer screen is pretty vague/fuzzy on what exactly is in the location my missing part belongs to. There’s _something_ crammed in there in _approximately_ the right place, but there’s not enough detail for me to see the tubes connecting that would clue me that this is what I’m missing. And I’m not inclined to spend $95 (probably non-refundable) to wait a day or two to see if it’s what I actually need. $95 is too much money to spend to find out what fascinating part shares approximately the same space as my missing framise adapter. (Or is that a framice adaptor?)

So finally we come to my question: Does anyone here know for sure what I need to ask for, or better yet, can anyone direct me to a site where I can see a clear diagram of all the parts listed around my engine, in clear enough detail that I can match what I see under the hood to the picture?
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Old 07-28-10, 04:18 PM
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Sounds as if it could be a simple PCV (positive crankcase ventilation) valve. It restricts air from entering the engine and works off suction. If the valve is missing, the engine will not run properly and could die. Just a guess, but your knuckle dragging mechanic should have known that, as it is a simple, and most often overlooked tune up item.
Old 07-28-10, 07:49 PM
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Thanks for the response, Chandler.

I may have given the wrong impression by calling the mechanic a trunk-slammer. I don't use that term as necessarily belittling. I worked over 35 years in the security alarm industry, punching a clock and driving a company vehicle. I like to think I'm very good at what I do. Nowadays I'm semi-retired and _I'm_ a trunk-slammer when I handle what personal accounts I've kept or taken on. I looked on Craig's List because it occured to me that there might well be a good mechanic out there moonlighting in cars the way I do with alarm systems.

The mechanic was worth what I paid him and more, IMHO. He did mention the PCV valve first thing. Remember you're hearing about what he said thru a car newb who doesn't remember unfamiliar terms very well. Considering the pittance he charged, I'm happy he was willing to drive half an hour out to me and get me mobile again.

He wasn't sure if the valve itself was missing, and in fact, considering that I've driven the car close to a hundred miles with whatever-is-missing _still_ missing, and it seems to be running as peppy as ever, I'm not at all sure the valve is missing. Wouldn't a missing PCV valve affect performance noticably?

Might the PCV be inside the air intake housing and could the missing dohicky be just an in-line filter for the vacuum/suction tube from the crankcase to the valve?

EDIT: I would love to find out that there's a site somewhere I can view a drawing of my engine with all the major parts identified. Preferably a little clearer than the one the parts guy was able to bring up. That guy mentioned the PCV valve to ($) but the picture was just too vague to make out _exactly_ where it was located.

'Nother EDIT: I misspoke when I said the tube came out of the upper right of the rear of the engine. I forgot that "left and right" should be oriented from a driving position. It's the upper _left_ of the rear.

Last edited by ChosunOne; 07-28-10 at 08:11 PM.
Old 07-29-10, 02:05 AM
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