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All 6 Coils replaced, second time this year

We own a Volkswagen Routan, 2010, ~85,000 miles.

January 2019, engine stutters, engine light blinks.

Dealership says all six coils are cracked and they need to be replaced. Head honcho at the repair desk says he’s never seen all six coils cracked like that and it’s very weird.

We replace them.

$$$

Catalytic converter ruined because of engine misfiring (dealership wouldn’t say whether it had to do with the misfiring engine, but I thought that was straightforward). Live in CA, have to replace CC so we can register the car.

Lots more $$$

November 2019, engine stuttering again.

Dealership sends text “We need to replace all ignition coils on the vehicle totaling $1010.”

I call them.

Man on phone says “all coils are cracked.”

I informed him, “So those should be under warranty, right, because you replaced them in January.”

He was confused. He couldn’t find records of the repair and started speaking in very vague terms.

I found my records and offered to send them his way.

He never confirmed that he found the record but said those parts are under warranty, I assume he did. He was either very busy or very annoyed.

He says they just need more time to figure out what is going on.

Question 1:
Is having to replace 12 damaged coils in a vehicle in the same calendar year a common thing, and is it likely to happen at all? What might cause such extensive damage?

Question 2:
How can I be sure the dealership isn’t trying to pull something fishy?

By going to a trusted independent mechanic!

But, if you only trust dealerships, you should go to a Chrysler/Dodge dealership, as your “Volkswagen” is actually a Chrysler/Dodge with different badging and different body trim parts. Chrysler/Dodge dealerships work on these vehicles regularly, unlike a VW dealership that sold very few of these “badge-engineered” Chrysler/Dodge vehicles.

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Since the coils are getting damaged, and that isn’t normal by any means, I would check out the circuit that drives the coils and also check the power supply voltage. Make sure that there is no AC ripple voltage riding on the DC.

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You’re bringing your ten-year-old vehicle to the dealer for repairs.

The dealer is going to install Volkswagen coils. There may be a design flaw with these coils.

If you were to take your ten-year-old vehicle to an independent shop for repairs, they would probably install aftermarket coils. And these coils may last longer.

https://www.rockauto.com/en/catalog/volkswagen,2010,routan,4.0l+v6,1445583,ignition,ignition+coil,7060

An OEM part doesn’t always mean it’s a better part.

Tester

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