2001 Jetta radio fail

Hello, I own a 2011 Jetta which has been very good for us. It has 50,000 miles on it. We have had no issues, and have been careful to take it in for all scheduled maintenance to a certified VW mechanic (never the dealer). Last week we took it in for its check up and when I picked it up, the radio was dead. I told the mechanic and he brought out his computer and plugged it in. No signal from the car to the computer; it was as if the radio didn’t even exist. Mind you I was listening to it all the way to the shop (it’s an hour away). It sat on his lot for about 5 hours while being checked out for the routine stuff. Mechanic says that these cars are notorious for having P.O.S. radios installed. Expensive to replace from the dealer. Question: is this a rampant problem, and what does VW say about this defect?

I assume you are out of warranty, perhaps something got hosed, Try again with the manager stating the problem, and hope enough karma kicks in or look at crutchfields if you want a diy replacement.

Did the shop have to disconnect the battery during the check-up for some reason? Like they replaced the battery with a new one? On some newer cars, if they get totally powered down by disconnecting the battery, they’ll (the radio) stop working. It’s partly to make stealing the radio less appealing to a car radio thief. Why go to all that trouble when the radio you steal won’t work?

I suspect this problem is related. On the the other side of the argument, usually when that happens the radio displays some kind of error code. Still, if I had this problem, I’d take the car to a VW dealer shop and ask their opinion. Often it requires a special gadget only the dealer shop has to reinitialize the radio.

14 year old radios do fail. Unfortunately VW wires some of their other car electronics through the radio. So if you replace it I’d use Crutchfield to make sure the replacement is compatible.

2011 Jetta? If the radio is 14 years old then I’m a time traveler. Anyway…the Crutchfield advice is spot on.

OP states both 2011 and 2001.

I only see 2011. I think some editing has been done here.

2001 Jetta radio fail luckysmommy July 29 in Repair and Maintenance Hello, I own a 2011 Jetta...

Editing needed.

I took the headline age (2001), but it sounds like it’s a 2011. So it sounds like something happened during the check-up. Hope they’ve replaced all relevant fuses.

I found the article describing the bizarre way VW uses their radios. It’s from 2005, so it’s not too much out of date:

A key quote:
"If you know anything about auto maintenance, you know we mechanics often have to connect diagnostic scan tools to the cars to retrieve information necessary for repairs. Since 1996, all cars have the same standardized connectors and all manufacturers provide data in the same format. Very simple, very good, nothing to go wrong or mess up — except Volkswagen! Any time you connect to or begin testing a Volkswagen you can easily and quite accidentally change the delicate, carefully calculated operating parameters of the car. The computer is wide open. There is no other manufacturer’s car where you could do this if you wanted to. This is not a good thing. "

A Volkswagen with an electrical issue? How ridiculously unlikely!!!

lol …

If you Google “2011 jetta radio problems” you’ll find many reports of these failing. A new radio may be in your immediate future.

That’s a pretty interesting article you linked to there @texases. It kind makes you feel glad not to be a Volkswagen owner. I assume the radio is causing a problem with the computer bus line communications when the radio has a problem. Hopefully whoever worked on it at least checked for power getting to the radio. It sure sounds like a simple power issue but it may be a security related issue if power was disconnected to the radio.