2013 Jetta – Mysterious stalling

I’m having a mysterious problem with my 2013 Jetta Sportwagen S.

About a year ago it started stalling at random times. Always at low RPM — either stopped, at low speed, or when coasting. Sometimes even on the highway when I’d let off the gas, the car would turn off. It always starts right back up easily.

A shop diagnosed and replaced the crankshaft position sensor. This relatively simple fix worked for a while.

Some months later, the same problem came back. This time, another shop replaced a speed sensor. This was more involved (and expensive) as it was located inside the transmission. This also fixed the problem for a while.

Now, the problem is back. Stalls at random times, sometimes stopped, sometimes moving, always at low RPM. No check engine light is on. I’m planning to bring it to VW dealer this time, but thought I’d see if this sounds familiar to anyone. Thanks for any help!

Dirty throttle body or possibly carboned up intake valves. What engine and how many miles on it?

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Ah, I do remember reading about the throttle body before getting that first sensor replaced. It’s a 2.5L in-line 5 with about 96k.

Could also be the PCV valve but that should set a check engine light. Is the CEL on?

Nope, it’s not on. In the past it’s come on intermittently before I got the repair done (some kind of transmission code before the speed sensor got replaced). But it’s not a consistent thing.

Ask you shop to verify the idle rpm is correct. The CBTA 2.5L gasoline engine idles at 680 rpm from what I can see. Also check the oil pressure. If the oil pressure is sensed to be too low, and it will be the lowest at or near idle, the computer might shut off the engine. From what I can tell the normal oil pressure would be around 20 psi or higher at idle, around 50 psi at 2000 rpm. Shops have accurate gauges they screw into the engine for this. There are usually actions/events that automatically increase idle speed to prevent stalling, such as turning on the AC, or the engine cooling fan turning on, both of which increase the load on the engine. So ask your shop to double check all those are actually happening.

There are other many possibilities but – other than checking for diagnostic codes – the above are where I’d start if I had that problem.

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Your vehicle has a variable displacement fuel pump.

This means a fuel pump driver module varies the fuel pumps speed by varying the voltage to the fuel pump.

So, the driver module may be failing, or the fuel pump may be failing.



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Thank you @Mustangman @George_San_Jose1 @Tester, all super helpful.