Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: I'm being told my rear dif is toast. How does this happen? Is it due to lack of rear dif oil changes or do they just wear out? 2009 VW Tiguan

asked by on

Our Tiguan was making an embarrassingly loud noise when driven. It felt like we were dragging heavy metal. We were told our rear differential is gone. We were also told it's an expensive job to replace. Our questions are: 1) what should we expect to pay (Canadian dollars)? 2) we were told this is a rare mechanical failure- so why did ours go? We have been getting it serviced by the dealer as they suggested. Is it possible they missed replacing the rear dif oil? Should I be checking for that as I've read the oil needs replacing every 12000-50000km. 3) is it better to fix or get a new car?

My car has 122000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hello - your Tiguan is equipped with a Haldex torque-sensing system which directs power thru the differential to the axle (left/right) which has the best traction. Think of the differential as the reduction gears and axle(s) drive, and the Haldex as the mechanism which decides which axle drive to send power through. This is important because the Haldex, and the differential have different lubrication types, and a different lube maintenance schedule. If the differential was being serviced, but not the Haldex, this could be an issue. Which component failed - the Haldex, or the differential itself? The differential proper should be good for many more miles of service unless it was abused. The Haldex is more sensitive to maintenance. I recommend a discussion with the service center regarding your service history, and which component is actually now broken.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Ask a Mechanic
(100% Free)

Have a car question? Get free advice from our top-rated mechanics.

Ask A Mechanic
Over 10,000 questions answered!
  • Home
  • Questions
  • I'm being told my rear dif is toast. How does this happen? Is it due to lack of rear dif oil changes or do they just wear out? 2009 VW Tiguan

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: Car computer gave me a P0441 code.

A code P0441 could mean one or more of the following has happened: Bad vacuum switch broken or damaged EVAP line or canister open in PCM purge command circuit open or short in Voltage feed circuit to Purge Solenoid faulty...

Q: Glow plug light flashing and car is in limp mode.

Hi there. There could be an issue with the glow plug circuits. Either the glow plugs have stopped working or the controller / timer has lost power. Check the glow plug relay and see if it's energizing the controller /...

Q: When i shift the gear to D or R it doesn't move at all.

Like everything else, your car's transmission is controlled by a computer. I suspect there is a control issue. It could be that the computer is not getting a signal that it wants to see, or that there is a breakdown...

Related articles

How Do Power Car Windows Increase Passenger Safety?
Power windows are responsible for approximately 2,000 emergency room visits every year. When a power window closes, it exerts enough force to bruise or break bones, crush fingers, or restrict an airway. Though...
Rules of the Road For Iowa Drivers
Driving on the roads requires knowledge of the rules, many of which are based on common sense and courtesy. However, even though you know the rules in...
How to Avoid Back Pain in a Car
If you have back problems, sitting in a car for an extended period of time can be excruciating. Even without back problems, you could experience discomfort and soreness from...