[Vwdiesel] '81 Rabbit questions

Val Christian val at mongo.mongobird.com
Sun Dec 16 17:41:52 PST 2007

> new-to-me 26-yr-old Rabbit with a handful of issues
> thought I'd throw them there:
> 1. running HOT
> yesterday on the highway got up into the red
> got out, checked her over thoroughly, topped up coolant
> made it the rest of the way driving @ 55
> but still flirting with the red
> and few minutes ago the oil light was a faint dull red for a minute  
> or two after a short local drive
> possibly oil filter? oil pressure? hate to admit I haven't put a new  
> filter on there since I bought it

	Check the thermostat.  They wear out, they fail, then the
	head gets warped or the headgasket fails.

> 2. leak
> don't know if this is related, but where the PCV hose comes into the  
> air filter it's wet on top of the filter housing - I assume oil, but  
> maybe had a little diesel smell to it?
> excessive blow-by?

	Most likely.  Clean it up, and see how much.  Consider 
	a compression test.  How quick doe sthe oil get dirty?

> head gasket?
> but the coolant has no sign of oil
> anyway, damp up there
> 3. klunk
> OK, on to the suspension
> pass side gives an alarming clunk occasionally going over bumps or  
> around corners - anytime flexing of or shock to the frame
> not sure whether from or rear - SOUNDS like front when I'm driving,  
> but when I get out and shake the tires I hear it in the rear
> any ideas what this might be/where I should look?

	First try, the bearings at the top of the front struts.

> 4. door locks
> driver's side door will not lock w/ the key
> I have to reach in from the passenger's side to lock or unlock
> how to fix?
> I'm sure there's more, but this off the top of my head
> thanks for any thoughts
> -- 
> Rolf in MA
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