Stuck Fuel Injectors

I have a 2011 VW GTi with about 120k miles.

10k miles ago, driving down the highway, the engine lost a considerable amount of power and it wouldn’t restart. Diagnosis was a stuck fuel injector (#4), that was replaced.

This week, I had a similar loss of power. The EPC light came on. It would start, but it ran rough. Limped in to the dealership (dios mio!) and now fuel injector #1 is stuck.

Is this a common problem on VW GTIs? Is there something causing the issue?

The first time it happened, I figured it was a one off… now I’m wondering if it’s something more systematic.
Currently, I’ve got an extended warranty covering most of the repair. But if this is going to be a recurring problem, I may not keep the car after that expires.

Appreciate the help.

Not sure if it’s a known problem with this particular vehicle. Could be a problem with the Gas you use.

Could be trash in the fuel system. It could be that you are running the tank very low before refueling…that can cause debris in the tank to be sucked into the fuel pump pickup and cause the injectors to stick.

Or… if one injector got stuck because it was worn out, why wouldn’t they ALL be at the very same point in their lives? So first #4, next #1, can #2 and #3 be far behind?

If I was doing the work, I’d likely replace them all with a matched set if one needed replacing.


I don’t buy gas from any one station. But I always use a “top tier” brand of fuel - Shell, Chevron, etc.

The gas cap door says “91 octane recommended”, not required. We generally have 87, 89, and 93 octane available. I’ve always used the 89, and haven’t heard any engine knocks or anything.

Would a higher octane gas make a difference?

No, it would not.

That’s was my thought…

Original poster says he has an extended warranty service contract. They don’t pay for proactive repairs, only the specific part that has failed at the time of tne claim.

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Your car is simply past its “best if used by” date.


I was hoping to get a few more miles out of it before it reached the “always needs something fixed” stage… I’ve already got a 97 Dakota that takes up my time, and money.

Then you don’t get a European car.


If your car manual says 91 recommended, it is automatically retarding your timing to allow it to run on the lower octane gas.
You will have less power and some decrease in fuel mileage.

I know that some brands of gas used to have more detergents when you went up in octane. Over time, less detergents could cause stuck injectors.

The trouble is, I don’t know if this is still true of today’s gas,

I particularity don’t know if it is true of top tier brabds.

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Fuel injection cleaners and Top Tier gas will only help issues related to gum and varnish. They will do nothing as far as solid particulates in the gasoline.

Where is the fuel filter in all of this? Has that thing ever been changed? If not, I feel it’s a must and should always be done with any fuel pump or injector work.
I would bet if the filter were to be removed and dumped into a pan you would be surprised at the amount of gunk in there.

Also, the fuel filter does not trap everything. Some debris gets through the screen and that ends up on the even finer screen that is inside each injector. Maybe those injectors are not stuck but are simply plugged up. If one suffers, they all suffer.
That is why remanufactured injectors are reverse flushed; to drive any contaminants back out the way they came in.

I’m mostly sure that it’s been replaced, but I will check it out.

I’ve been doing a little digging and apparently VWs with direction injection have more carbon build up problems than they let on.

Try the forum search feature, icon upper right this page, maybe there’s been some comments here about stuck injectors on VW’s. I don’t recall that being discussed though. From the posts we get here, VW’s (excepting their 70’s K-Jetronic CIS versions) seem to be plagued by systematic electrical system problems more than fuel system problems. Have you tried replacing the fuel filter? If not, worth a try and it will give your shop a chance to see if there’s any grit in the fuel.