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I had to suffer much of this terribly and it took a terribly long
and painful voyage of middle of the freeway, cutoff and misses 
in the middle of busy downtown, busy border 120 cars waiting 
and pushing all the way, those were the days in October 1999
and I knew nothing about these cool cars. Never had to tow it
though. Wiring was my biggest problem, I just sent an e-mail 
to the "Weirdness" problem (Micah's latest car poltergeist).
That e-mail mention's a really weird problem I had when I
first got the car in October 99. The problem was old brittle,
greasy, troublesome wiring. 

My first problem was wiring to 
the pump. Next was the fuel pump working sometimes. This
problem almost cost my sanity, the thing would cut off at will
at any time any condition ,even at idle, it would prevent my car from
starting and when it was on you could clearly hear it. My temporary 
fix was to bang the pump with a pipe, I carried, to turn it back on.
I found out that the pump would seize after few minutes of warm-up
or hot day. It was random , it even happened on cooler days. 
Removed it, opened the impeller side up, looked good, put it
back was random, even when hot wired. Replaced it with a new
one from Carter (Bosch stamped on it, 150 bucks) everything
working peachy until EFI failing randomly, tested injectors,
spray looked nasty and cut off at higher injector speeds (made
own test jig) , replaced injectors with rebuilt brand (Python)and 
had weak power and high speed cutoff. Engine would go slower
and slower uphill at full throttle. eeeeek! it was overheating :
nice smoke coming out of oil filler tube, blackened dip stick 
with black carbon chunks, all valves tightening (valves stretching
under heat), top speed 50 MPH  etc.......

Replaced injectors with Bosch and so sweet the results they were. 
This lasted a few weeks and  now I had a funny miss in my car .
This came and went, found and open vacuum hose. This corrected
the miss a little. Another type of miss was creeping up and getting 
worse and worse. So I bought a big zoom coil from those Detroit
monster catalogs, opened the sparkplugs a little more to get
it to burn better. The missing was less for a little while then it got 
worse and worse accompanied by black smoke. Sucked on the 
pressure sensor found it leaking, opened it, found broken diaphragm.
Replaced pressure sensor with a good used ADJUSTABLE one
from a Mercedes (unit lasted 7 months). This worked awesome 
until car missed really
ugly again, missing randomly and very bad. Head temp sensor
was bad. Center wire of sensor was shorting to ground randomly.
Bought head sensor at VW dealership for 15.00 bucks and it
was smooth sailing again...UNTIL the engine decided to miss
ugly again and run on two cylinders, (this happened with bad old 
injectors), found EFI points riding open because the grease
turned to stone also the point surface was really dirty. Cleaned them 
up and the engine purred the finest it has ever been. 

The honeymoon was over before I rebuilt my engine and took
everything apart, the engine was missing again and once again
running on two cylinders and gave it's final overheating before 
performing major surgery in my garage. I found that besides 
all the broken components my wiring needed major attention.
The system had lots of masking tape, cellophane tape, bare twisted
wires and wires pushed into the injector plugs. The more I fixed
the EFI the more I broke the ancient brittle wires. I had to redo 
the wires and connectors. I did not reharness the system
even though I should have. I performed some wire and connector
transplants on some major components. Wire can be purchased 
at hardware or electronic stores. New plastic connectors and their
metal pigtail (little metal plugs with wire already attached can be 
purchased at a VW dealership (had to order), just show them a sample.
The rubber boots are not available at VW but can be purchased at 
a Mercedes or Volvo dealer by giving them the right model and year
of their car.

 Fixed the harness and grounds after the rebuild and that
was the last I heard of my EFI problems, I do not even know it is there.
Engine is rock solid, tight, accelerates smoothly at all speeds, engine
is rock steady with undetectable shaking or vibration when looking at 
it. You would not know it was on if it wasn't for the exhaust noise.
I even  turned the exhausted noise on my dual muffler setup by 
installing resonator tips. Now the car has a light purrr with the usual
tappet noise.

People say that the air temp sensor on the manifold does not
make any difference, it does, it additionally leans the mixture
when the engine and air warms up (conducts less). Disconnecting
this will richen the mixture a little. On my engine, if it is cold and 
I disconnect it when cold, the engine will rev up a little more.
If your EFI is not properly adjusted right (head sensor not matching
ECU or head sensor old, or vacuum sensor not adjusted correctly
or mismatched) you can suffer from a slightly or a lot rich condition
so that the air temp sensor does little for your engine. When engine's
EFI is all working to tight specifications, this sensor will make a 
difference in gas mileage. That is why I now get 30 mpg city
34-36 highway, depending how fast I go on flat stretches. Just
broke and in need of troubleshooting is my EFI accelerator pump.
Probably wires again.

All of these problems are just some of the more memorable EFI
ones , not to mention the entertaining long list of mechanical
problems I had. As you noticed I am giddy how mysystem is

My point is do not only fix the things that just happen to come by
on EFI as a case by case basis, you may take forever or at least
a long time. Get connectors, boots, thin wires, older, soldering iron, 
good quality electrical tape, parts to replace very old parts  spend a 
three day weekend taking the harness apart (do not forget to put
little pieces of masking tape on wiring with your writing showing
were it goes). You will avoid trying moments and the indignity of 
pushing your car to work. You will rebuild motors, transmissions,
brake systems, carburetors etc... Why not rebuild a 30 year old
EFI system.



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