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2012 Passat TDI Brake Fluid Leak

Hello! I have a 2012 Passat TDI - the other day the brake pedal went all the way to the floor and the dashboard indicated I needed brake fluid. I filled it up with DOT 4 and pressure came back for about a minute, then the same thing. All of the break fluid I added was on the driveway basically under the engine. After looking under the hood, i see no evidence of leaking anywhere! Nothing around the reservoir, master cylinder or the booster. All the other brake lines ( I could see) were dry as well… and yet I’ve got DOT 4 all over the driveway. Any idea what I am missing?

You’ve obviously got a major brake fluid leak somewhere. Have the car towed in to a local reputable shop and have the brake system inspected. It’s not likely that the brake system is still covered under your factory warranty.


I called VW and the warrantee expired at 36,000. I have 59,000.

Concur w/ @asemaster , some brake line or connector is broken. The reservoir is the highest point in the hydraulic system, so if you got a leak below that, it will all leak out eventually. Best guess, this is a broken rubber hose that connects to one of the wheel calipers. Since the fluid on the ground is under the front of the car, ask your shop to check those two rubber hoses that serve the front wheel calipers.

You probably already know this, but don’t try to drive this car until the leak is repaired. It’s a very unsafe situation.

If you’ve recently installed chains or cables on the tires btw, like to travel to a ski resort on a snow covered road, that’s a likely culprit for damaging the caliper hose or its connector. Should be an easy diagnosis and fix once you get it to a shop and up on a lift. Best of luck.

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