Passat won't start

I have a 2004 Passat with about 80,000 miles. Late last summer it failed to fire-off immediately. However after letting it crank for about 30-45 seconds it finally coughed to life.

This has happened 3-4 times since but every time started if I just cranked it awhile.

Yesterday, however, it wouldn’t start at all even after cranking it several times for the better part of two minutes. The vicinity stunk of gas fumes.

Today I called a wrecker and when we got there it started up immediately.

Any ideas?



Santa Fe, NM

Wen you turn the ignition on before cranking see if you can hear the fuel pump. It should stop when system is up to pressure. The long cranking may be due to loss of pressure in the fuel system., or a bad fuel pump.


This all makes some sense.

I’d gotten some advice from my Volvo mechanic–I’ve driven them for 30 years but he won’t touch a Passat–that there’s a check-valve or regulator that keeps the fuel pressure up when the car is off.

The crazy thing is that I cranked for a couple minutes yesterday–to no avail–and when we got there this morning it fired right up. I guess this might indicte an uppity fuel pump.