VW Golf Oil Warning Light

OK, one of the problems about being an owner of VW family cars, is you get lazy (or at least I did). I neglected to check my oil since the last change, because my cars have never used a drop of them. It always pays to do maintenance and regularly check your car fluids.

Today whilst driving to work I received the VW Golf Oil Warning Light (Yellow one), needless to say my arse was looser than someone who’d just been buggered by an elephant. I was crapping myself. If the light was flashing, it would mean sensor. Given that I don’t check my oil often, I was confident it was the level anyway


For information, here’s a quote directly from the above source:

Engine oil warning light Volkswagen

Engine oil warning light Volkswagen

Red warning lights mean you should stop the car as soon as it’s safe.
Yellow warning lights mean that action is required.
Green warning lights are for information only.

I knew I’d get to work and I’d just top it up at work, there are two warning lights on the VW Golf Oil and most other car systems. Generally speaking, the warning lights are:

  • Yellow (low oil level, it’s at the absolute minimum) – Fill urgently, ideally stop
  • Red (low oil pressure, this is dangerous) – Stop immediately, your engine will seize

Both situations are dangerous, I drove about 10 miles with the yellow light on, OK, I shouldn’t have, but I need to get to work, and knew I still had some oil in the car and driving that many miles wouldn’t cause it to fail.

I did however do some remedial actions, my car has never used oil. I do however drive my car really hard at times. I’ve always used the FULL rev range on my car so it gets the good old Italian tune up regularly to keep it healthy. The downside is it burns oil faster. That and I think I have a leaking intercooler which won’t help

Anyway, generally, the harder you drive your car, the faster the oil gets burnt. Basically hotter engine, faster spinning engine means more lubrication. So I took the safer option, I drove to work in 6th gear @ 50mph. Revs were around 1500rpm, which was really low, so didn’t put the engine under load much

Once I arrived at work, I went to top up Oil…… open boot, ermmm, hang on, didn’t I put the oil in the Garage at home one day?…. Oh, shit

I did check my oil when I got to work, and the dipstick wasn’t even reading at minimum…. by the way. Volkswagens dipsticks are REALLY badly designed on the VW Golf MK5. You get this crappy BLACK plastic with two balls on (for minimum and maximum). Yeah, it’s good in theory. You can read the oil level at any temp, however you have two problems here

  1. Oil is BLACK, dipstick is BLACK….. go figure
  2. Those little balls, yeah they stick out. Which means they SCRAP the oil tube coming up. So screws up your reading

If you are reading this VW, go back to the OLD style dipsticks. A metal based ones with little dotted ends, they’re SOOO much easier to read (I’m even thinking of modding my old Passat one). Even making the balls smaller would help

Anyway, long story short. I got my car home safely. Although I was expecting to receive the low oil warning light when coming home I didn’t… I didn’t want to chance it though. So repeated my driving conditions to keep the pressures low and reduce the chance of my engine committing a suicidial Harikari – if you’re reading this my little VW, I wubs you. Don’t break on me :O(

So, I filled up my car with about 3 litres of Mobil1 5w/30 ESP when I got home since it’s my preferred choice of Oil. Will do me until I buy some new drums, and chucked an old Castol Edge 5w/30 oil in the boot. I don’t like it, but it meets VW 505.00 standard (although the MK5 Golf is 505.01, or even 505.02 – I can’t remember) and end of the day, some oil is better than no oil. A car will still drive with shitty oil, it’s just not the optimum design for the engine

So as a future note, it always pays attention to those 2 mins. Avoid getting the VW Golf Oil Warning Light like I did, and save yourself some money in the long run from a potential rebuild


Views – 12292

Seized piston on brake caliper

After having my brakes inspected at the garage due to heavy vibrations when I was accelerating / braking. I suspected a warped brake disc or wheel balancing issue


My brother informed me that the piston was seized on my drivers side brake caliper at the front and it would need replacing. This was causing excessive heat when driving and was the cause of the over heating brake pads and vibrations that I felt.


I purchased some replacement brake pads and discs for my car from KNS and a new caliper for a total of £135.39 after giving them my cars registration, talk about a nightmare day


Me and my brother went through early morning to replace the discs and pads, the discs were 100% the right fitment because the part number on them matched a previous set I had bought.


We were unable to check the caliper was right until fitment, but visually inspecting it turned out to be correct. One comment I mentioned was I hope they gave me the right brake pads…. oh low behold me and my bad luck. They weren’t the right pads, they were for my model of car, but not my model of vehicle.


The pads for my car used different types of lugs to hold them in place on the caliper, they’re ones which point down, where the pads I was given were more slot in. I think the pads were for the 110HP model and mine is the 140 as they’re also smaller than the ones I currently use


Basically I had to do a trip to a local car parts store, which luckily is open 7 days per week. Get there early morning with my existing calipers and compared them against the ones I purchased and they were an exact match…. this is exactly the reason why I’m very awkward about VW, if you get the wrong gear your fubar’d


Anyway, in returning back, Steven had already changed the caliper, luckily and the new pads were correct (albeit, didn’t have ABS wear sensor, but a dummy wire was fitted so it didn’t trip the warning alarm).


At a later date I’ll order some parts from a site I’ve used before “Brake parts superstore”. I’ll be rebuilding my existing caliper as a spare for a Youtube Video and Article for the website and posting further detail in the brake article

Views – 1278

Oil change VW Golf MK5

After carrying out my last oil change on my VW Golf MK5 when I switched from flexible servicing to fixed servicing, I was prompted again to carry out another service on the Golf, it’s long overdue to be honest, but decided best to get it out the way incase of any winter weather coming in.


The VW Golf wasn’t treat to some low quality oil, I gave it some Mobil1 5w/30 ESP, low ash formula really good for the engine and a decent make. Volkswagen are very stringent when it comes to using specific oils for their car. Quite frankly I wouldn’t use any other cruddy oil anyway for the Golf. I prefer some decent stuff, I’d love Silkolene, but can’t justify the price when carrying out an Oil Change on the Golf.


I documented this procedure in a written up guide in the automotive section of my website. The downloadable link is available. I also uploaded a youtube video showing you how to reset the service indicator warning using VAGCOM

Views – 2336