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Old 12-19-2010, 02:11 PM   #1
Jerome81
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Hard Start When Cold

I've searched, I've participated in other threads, but I still can't seem to find much info on what is causing this hard or difficult starting problem when the car is cold.

Now that winter has hit and it is in the 20's outside, after the car sits for many many hours, I crank, and the car has sorta sputtered and died on the first start. Or I crank and it kinda stumbles to life. It has me bothered, but it seems nobody here has ever figured out if this is battery, plugs, coil packs, fuel pumps, etc.

Car runs fine otherwise. Perfect.

2008. Completely stock.

I'm thinking about taking it to the dealer, but I will need to get a ride from a friend, leave it overnight, etc. Its a pain.

If there are any new developments on what solved this issue, please post. May help when getting to the dealership.
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Old 12-19-2010, 03:24 PM   #2
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Without a code it's difficult to diagnose. Sometimes impossible
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Old 12-19-2010, 06:32 PM   #3
likes2driveslow
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yeah i have this problem. it doesn't throw out a code so my stupid dealer can't figure it out.

someone on here suggested it's the low pressure (in tank) fuel pump. after reviewing some literature, that pump seems to change it's operating pressure depending on ambient temperature. this pump also doesn't throw a code.

next time i go to the dealer, i'm going to bug them about looking into that.
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Old 12-19-2010, 06:38 PM   #4
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my does the same. Well, it has not stalled out on a cold start. I can definitely tell my battery is a touch weak when cold.

I would put a trickle charge (standard battery charger) on it overnight, and see how she starts.

if you do alot of short trip driving (less than 20min of driving) you are slowly killing your battery too. Especially in the winter, since you are running more electrical accessories (heated seats, rear defog, etc) you more power than usual from the charging circuit, and your car requires a long drive-time for it to charge itself back up.
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Old 12-19-2010, 09:56 PM   #5
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I have the same problem some times. Other than that once it starts it is fine.
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Old 12-19-2010, 10:25 PM   #6
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i believe its ur fuel pump sensor check it out. its like $40-$50 at the dealer. i had this problem back in the day
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Old 12-19-2010, 10:33 PM   #7
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I believe that this problem is covered in a common problem thread... Id give you the link if i could find it...
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Old 12-20-2010, 06:01 AM   #8
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Mine's a 2008 with 76k miles, and well maintained. I have had the same issue for months. In the morning, usually doesn't start first time, or takes a longer crank and then finally an uncomfortable start.

No codes. Changed the plugs, no difference. I haven't changed the coil packs, but I read on an earlier thread that someone with the same issue said changing their CP's made no difference.

I have not tried the fuel pump sensor.

Anyone else done this with success to this issue?
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Old 12-21-2010, 03:04 PM   #9
Jerome81
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Yeah, this issue still sounds like it isn't resolved. Bummer. Had hoped maybe I'd hear some sort of revelation.

I need to go to the dealer to replace the head unit ( CDC Hardware Error ) so I will talk to them. Not gonna leave the car overnight. last 2 days it started fine first try. Inevitably if I leave it at the dealer one night, the next day will be one of those days when it starts just fine....

And I'm pretty sure I have the fuel line rattle....which of course every time I get to the dealership is never occurring either.

I will ask what might cause it and the fuel pump sensor.
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Old 12-21-2010, 03:41 PM   #10
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Quick and possibly stupid question, do you put the key in the crank immediately? Or do you put the key in, wait for the fuel pump to prime, then crank the motor?

I found that if I do the former, it'll sputter and sometimes die out. But if I wait a few seconds, she starts no problemo
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Old 12-21-2010, 05:10 PM   #11
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I have the same problem sometimes when its cold out.
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Old 12-21-2010, 05:17 PM   #12
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I have the same problem as well. It's at the dealer right now for the Mechtronics replacement and to check on this cold start issue.

They've had it two days just to see if the cold start acts up. Nada so far.
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Old 12-21-2010, 06:59 PM   #13
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the problem is a leaky check valve between the hpfp and the lpfp. it doesn't maintain enough pressure over several hours of being parked. it's fine as is, the lpfp runs when you open the door for a reason. just takes a few extra revolutions to get good pressure at the injectors.
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Old 12-23-2010, 03:35 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Antagon3 View Post
Quick and possibly stupid question, do you put the key in the crank immediately? Or do you put the key in, wait for the fuel pump to prime, then crank the motor?

I found that if I do the former, it'll sputter and sometimes die out. But if I wait a few seconds, she starts no problemo
I have tried this and it really makes no difference in my case.
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Old 12-23-2010, 03:37 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nashbar View Post
the problem is a leaky check valve between the hpfp and the lpfp. it doesn't maintain enough pressure over several hours of being parked. it's fine as is, the lpfp runs when you open the door for a reason. just takes a few extra revolutions to get good pressure at the injectors.

Interesting. Is this based on you actually having the same issue and fixing it?

Where is this check valve located? Up till now, I guessed it might be a function of dirty valves since my car has 76k on it.
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Old 12-23-2010, 10:44 PM   #16
Jerome81
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nashbar View Post
the problem is a leaky check valve between the hpfp and the lpfp. it doesn't maintain enough pressure over several hours of being parked. it's fine as is, the lpfp runs when you open the door for a reason. just takes a few extra revolutions to get good pressure at the injectors.
Interesting advice. Anyone else have this as well? Repaired?
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Old 01-18-2011, 04:33 PM   #17
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Having the same problem in my stock '07 Gti
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Old 01-18-2011, 08:19 PM   #18
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check the battery, they shut down when its really cold. average life of a battery is around 4 years so yours is getting close. bring it to an auto parts store and have them do a load test.
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Old 01-18-2011, 09:01 PM   #19
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Mine just started doing this too. Can happen right after I shut off - go for milk - and come back. Engine just about starts then sputters off. It's cold here 30F and wet. I have VAGCOM and no codes thrown.

I have an 09 with 25K miles.
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Old 01-18-2011, 09:20 PM   #20
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Hell, you should be in mine when I start it up. Of course it sits a lot now, but it starts rough. lol. i figure part due to sitting, weather the s3 injectors, k04, tune and other factors. But as long as it starts, i am fine with it.
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Old 03-28-2011, 05:41 PM   #21
Jerome81
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I'll resurrect this thread a bit.

I'm still curious if this leaky check valve is indeed the problem? Has anyone had success after having this replaced?

Is this something that I could replace myself? I have a feeling, as others have had too, that when I leave it at the dealer, the hard start will not happen. I'm tempted, if the part isn't too expensive and can be easily replaced at my house, that I may just try putting a new one in and see what happens.

I do know that when I open the driver door, I DO have that priming sound, so I know it isn't that problem.

Any other way to somehow test the lpfp with vagcom or have the dealer look, etc? Or is this one of those just-start-replacing-parts-and-hope-you-get-the-right-one kinda problem?

I just find it really really really really frustrating that this seems to be a pretty common problem on our cars, yet I just still cannot seem to get anything that indicates that XYZ is the problem part. Everyone still seems to be taking shots in the dark. It so odd. Most other problems this common have at least 1 or 2 known causes. This hard start is a ghost.
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Old 03-28-2011, 05:58 PM   #22
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Subscribed. I have this same issue and had my LPFP and HPFP replaced -_____-
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