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1998 VW Passat Loud Engine Noise

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Anonymous Poster

Nov 16, 2008, 7:41 AM

Post #1 of 6 (3538 views)
1998 VW Passat Loud Engine Noise Sign In

Hello all,

About 2 months ago I was talked into putting synthetic oil into my 98 vw passat 1.8t. The car has 90,000 miles on it and i figured it was time to start taking better care of it. Since then it seems like my engine has been getting worse and worse.

About a month after the oil change the engine started to tick so I looked under the hood and the oil was low so I added a quart. About a month later (now) the engine is very loud on idle and when i accelerate. It almost sounds like a buzzing lawn mower sound coming from the left side of the car when I accelerate.

Any thoughts on what you think it could be would be greatly appreciated.


Nov 16, 2008, 8:01 AM

Post #2 of 6 (3532 views)
Re: 1998 VW Passat Loud Engine Noise Sign In

well the oil is going somewhere.

its either leaking out....which some people say synthetic makes leaks more prominent
its getting would see blue smoke out the exhaust
its being pushed into the cooling would see oil bubbles in the radiator

the ticking could be an exhaust leak. check around for any cracked manifolds or exhaust pipes. sometimes they can throw the sound and the source my be different from where you hear it.
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Anonymous Poster

Nov 16, 2008, 8:11 AM

Post #3 of 6 (3531 views)
Re: 1998 VW Passat Loud Engine Noise Sign In

Thanks for the reply.

I know that there isn't blue smoke coming out of the exhaust but have not checked the radiator.

A while back when I had my oil changed they broke part of the hole that the dipstick goes into (the orange plastic piece. I was thinking that maybe the oil is leaking out of that also.

It just really concerns me that it is making this loud of a noise since 2 months ago It was so quiet you couldn't even tell it was running.

Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Nov 16, 2008, 8:25 AM

Post #4 of 6 (3526 views)
Re: 1998 VW Passat Loud Engine Noise Sign In

To add + comments:

I doubt synthetic oil is a cause of a problem very miuch! Lot's of rumors on crap out there and if anything it would be a better oil for extremes but agreed it might just find its way thru smaller spots and if one happens to be a leaking item might leak more. The grade and viscosity and SAE rating counts more than the brand or type exactly.

You found it low and added a qt. How low was it then? Did that qt fill it? What prompted you to check the oil to begin with - the noise? You were too late then if the case and may have sustained real damage.

Fix that disptick as it's part of the PCV system as well. Some engines will blow out of those if not left intact.

Exhaust noises can really sound like mechanical engine problem noises and need be ruled out completely,


Anonymous Poster

Nov 16, 2008, 8:33 AM

Post #5 of 6 (3522 views)
Re: 1998 VW Passat Loud Engine Noise Sign In

thanks for the reply.

The oil was not that low (lower part of the dipstick) but a quart was needed to bring it to the right level.

I can see you are from the Boston area. I moved to Newton Highlands about 4 months ago. Do you know of any good trustworthy mechanics in the area?

Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Nov 16, 2008, 8:49 AM

Post #6 of 6 (3520 views)
Re: 1998 VW Passat Loud Engine Noise Sign In

In further West in Marlborough and don't know anyone anymore in as close as the Newtons.

Best to ask friends and neighbors with like cars who they like. No doubt you'll find Waltham and Watertown will have more shops to choose from than Newton and always did. Good luck,


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