HPFP Failure (High Pressure Fuel Pump)

April 2, 2010

What it is

The common rail fuel system in the 2009 / 2010 VW TDI vehicles can deliver fuel at over 25,000 PSI. As you can imagine, the fuel system is extremely precise and must be robust to stand up to those pressures.

http://kaplunov.com/tdi/022003bosch.pdf

 

Why it is a problem

Preventive measures

VW's take on the issue

No problem, I'll get an extended warranty!

Leave a comment

After my wife's hpfp failure back in Sept,2009 I have been on a quest to find the answers to why the Bosch hpfp fails. I've spent many hours on tdi forums and hours and hours of research talking to as many people as I could.Constatntly picking anyones brain that I could to learn even the smallest tidbit of info. I have a couple of failed hpfps that people have donated to the cause of finding out what the problem might be. I have carried these pumps with me at all times and when the opportunity to speak with someone that may shed some light on what the problem might be I always took that opportunity. After over 1 year of constantly analyzing the pumps, I have finally come to a conclussion. Previoulsy I and others had thought the roller/cam in the low pressure side of the hpfp was the problem.That low lubricity fuel was causing premature wear. In November of 2010 at approx. 5am it finally hit me. The one thing that just didn't make sense. Where do the initial metal particles come from that initiate a hpfp to fail? Previous theories were that lack of lubrication in diesel fuel would cause the roller to fail,whether it was through heat or metal fatigue. All failed hpfp showed a failure at the roller/cam. This new theory that struck me like a bolt of lightning was that the steel piston cup that holds the roller runs in the aluminum bore of the hpfp. When there is a lack of lubrication in the piston cup/bore contact area this can cause the piston bore to wear at an extremely accelerated rate. This abnormal wear of the aluminum piston bore is where the initial metal particles are made. These particles if in sufficient quantity become trapped between the roller and roller holder. This then causes wear or destruction at the roller/roller holder also. This wear will then affect the cam. At this point the hpfp is catastrophically failing. Even with this much of the hpfp failing it is still capable of making adequate fuel pressure because the lenght of the hpfp high pressure pump parts are still going through the same lenght stroke. Until the hpfp is compromised to a point by metal particles restricting fuel flow it will continue to operate normally or almost normally. At some point fuel pressure is inadequate and a fault code will be thrown or engine operation will cease. I have talked to many knowledgeable people in my search for the answers to the hpfp problem. It seems that there are a couple of viable solutions. One being to use a fuel lubricity additive or 2 to 5% biodiesel to add additional lubricity to the fuel we burn. Maybe using both an additive and biodiesl may be a more prudent thing for owners of the CR diesel engine to do. Another alternative that has just come to light is the possibilty of using a nicasil coating in the aluminum bore of the hpfp. With this coating the wear of the bore should be eliminated even with low lubricity fuel. So, in conclussion the problem is still low or lack of lubricity. But its not the roller/cam that causes the failure. The roller/cam failure are the result of and not the cause of a failure. The inital cause of hpfp failures is the steel on aluminum piston cup/piston cup bore contact area that quickly wears because of low or lack of lubricity. Anyone that needs help with a hpfp failue can contact me at crazy4diesel2@aol.com Sincerely, dweisel LUBRICITY,LUBRICITY,LUBRICITY!
All owners of VW TDI should file a Class Action Suit against VW I will speak to a lawyer in nyc this week. If my pump goes an vw does not fix it I will run the car thru the showroom window.
1. My TDI SportWagen has 24k miles, and died last week on the road. The car was running fantastic with no issues and died in a matter of seconds. 2. Fuel is from three stations between my home and work. BP, Sunoco, and an Interstate. Never have I added any additives or BioFuel (maybe I should have). 3. The car has pretty much had a lot of issues since new. I had a recall at around 10k when they did the first service. The at 20k they pinched the oil filter O ring and lost all oil on my garage floor the next day. Took it back and they replaced the ring and oil. The next day again there was more oil, and they re-replaced the ring. A few days later, I took it back due to a burnt smell to find out the oil pan blanket was soaked. Took a few days to get the part in and return to replace. Now this. Recap: Towed to VW and will cost 7k to replace clean and replace the entire fuel system due to metal shavings that the dealer claims happened when gasoline was introduced into the tank. Dealer claims this is not covered by warranty. I assume if this is correct, it was contamination at the fuel station tanks since I am very careful to purchase only "branded" fuel. Contacted VW America and they have assigned a "case manager" to look into it. If they rule against me, I will be seeking legal assistance and selling as soon as possible. It's a shame since I really liked my Wagen, but will be afraid to travel knowing bad fuel on the road could leave me stranded again and then who will fix this?
2009 VW TDI Jetta 50,000 miles. The following repairs: 15,000 miles new electric steering rack 38,000 miles complete exhaust and emission system 40,000 miles new AC compressor 50,000 miles failure of HPFP. The service writer was proud of being able to get VW to cover HPFP failure by VW. Over $8000dollars in repair in 50,000 miles. Awful reliability of a vehicle purchased new and serviced by the book by the dealer
Our 2010 Touareg with 15,000 (we bought new)began to require several starting attempts to start. Drove directly to dealer. They tore apart and said stuff and rust was in the fuel. Questioned us about where we buy fuel and kept asking about gas in fuel. All of our cars/trucks are diesels so assured them we did not put gas in the diesel tank. Car is right now (3/21/2012) totally disassembled with engine/diff/tank and all fuel related parts out of the car. My wife traded it for a new SUV and the new dealer came to the VW dealer to inspect as is. Thankfully for us, they traded. My wife really loved all aspects of this v6 diesel but obviously VW has a problem with the pump. My Ford mechanic tells me that I must put diesel fuel treatment in every tank of my 2008 F450 or the low sulfur diesel will cause the pump to "eat itself". Seems like VW has the same issue, not enough lubricity in the raw diesel fuel to keep the pump turning at such high rpm's and pressure. This is problem and I believe someone must push VW to face the issue.
2010 Golf TDI w/73,000 mi has high pressure fuel pump come apart with metal fragments throughout the fuel line. $8000 minimum to replace entire fuel system.
My first pump system went out at 30,000 and now my second one went out at 58,898. worst thing is the car lot is blaming me and I'm in the middle of trading the car in at another car lot. I am praying I don't get hosed on this one. So disappointed
My first pump system went out at 30,000 and now my second one went out at 58,898. worst thing is the car lot is blaming me and I'm in the middle of trading the car in at another car lot. I am praying I don't get hosed on this one. So disappointed
I do not see any recent postings, but I have seen yours in the tdi Club forums. Steel piston on aluminum bore is bad design, period. Bosch could have sleeved the bore with a metal similar in hardness to the piston. VW should recall these vehicles and fix them right. It is unfair that the people with 2009 thru 2010 will see their cars severely devalued because of this problem. Regardless, all components that relate to emissions have an inherent 5 year warranty. But, in all fairness, VW of America shoudl man up to the problem.
Aug. 2012. My 2011 VW Golf TDI had a HPFP pump failure at 15,200 miles, leaving me stopped dead in commuter traffic. The car was towed to the VW dealer. VW authorized repair of both pumps (HPFP and auxiliary pump) all 4 fuel injectors, all fuel lines and all filters at no cost to me being the car was still under warranty. I was lucky that I was not on the freeway doing 65mph when the pump let go. There was no warning of any kind before the disintegration of the pump and immediate shutdown of the engine. I think this is a true safety issue that VW/Audi needs to address do to the poorly designed HPFP pumps.
Aug. 2012. My 2011 VW Golf TDI had a HPFP pump failure at 15,200 miles, leaving me stopped dead in commuter traffic. The car was towed to the VW dealer. VW authorized repair of both pumps (HPFP and auxiliary pump) all 4 fuel injectors, all fuel lines, all filters at no cost to me being the car was still under warranty. I was lucky that I was not on the freeway doing 65mph when the pump let go. There was no warning of any kind before the disintegration of the pump and immediate shutdown of the engine. I think this is a true safety issue that VW/Audi needs to address do to the poorly designed HPFP pumps in the USA market.
just bought a 2013 tdi golf. two weeks after buying it it decreased on the highway to a speed of 20mph.....dragged it home with the flashers on in the right lane. hpfp went steel shavings through out. Lines pumps, tank everything redone. I am afraid it will happen again. Plus could them shavings have done damage to the motor?
This is ridiculous. They are saying that the cause is contaminated fuel; however, there are many (like me) who have used diesel for years and have had issues with no other vehicle. This car is shot now, the repair bill nearly half of what we still owe on it. The interesting thing to me is that the initial service tech who inspected the vehicle said that the fuel was NOT contaminated, but later the warranty inspector "found" gasoline in the tank. How the heck did my wife drive over 400 miles on the tank of fuel if it was that full of gasoline? Every incident I have read of misfueling says that the car deteriorates almost immediately. I smell something awful here, and who do I get to help me?
My 09 TDI Jetta just quit running while driving on the interstate. I barely drifted off onto the shoulder without being hit.I was on my way home and had about 300 miles to go. The closest dealer was in Georgia and it was an expensive tow. Long story short, the fuel pump failed and the whole fuel system is being replaced on VW's dime. I reported the incident to VW of America and they honored the repair on the spot. No questions. I spoke to customer care and they are covering the tow bill and hotel stay and a rental car until the repair is complete. My Jetta diesel had 48,000 miles on it. I have owned 7 VW's and never experienced such a serious problem. My concern going forward is will this happen again? Will I or my family survive the incident? It's been a great car but I don't know if I can drive it with peace of mind now. VW rep's did not convince me that the problem with the new fuel pump has been resolved. I'm going to ask for a extended warrenty on the new fuel pump. Enough said. I wonder how much VW would give me for this car on a trade? I probably could not get much for this car if I sold it. That's if someone does there homework. VW needs get my loyality back concerning saftey!
My 2011 TDI sportwagen is in for repairs and has been since the beginning of Sept. First they replaced the HDFP, then failed the day I got it back, replaced a fuel sensor, got it back and again it died the same day, replaced fuel pump in tank, still had problems and they just replaced the fuel rail. They are still testing the car after this replacement. I have mainly been using B5 fuel with occasional use of pure diesel. The car doesn't even have 17k miles yet. The Prius station wagon is looking pretty good now. Although I hate to pass this car onto someone else. So, the B5 theory doesn't hold in my case.
I have a 2011 Jetta TDI and experienced a HPFP failure within the first 14,000 miles. VW tried to push the blame on me even though fuel tests came back negative for any water/gasoline contaminants. I know BMW had a similar issue with their diesel engine that was only resolved AFTER a class action suit. Should I and others consider the same against VW? I am concerned this design flaw will not go away and I/others will have to "own the problem" after the 3 year warranty expires. NHTSA is not taking the matter seriously enough and the Attorney General for the State of Maryland is a joke when it comes to consumer protection-related issues (I tried them as well). Any suggestions will be appreciated.