Maintenance guides

As I fix up and perform general maintenance on the car I want to record and share what I've done in the hopes it might make someone else's life a little easier. I've used many, many online resources for each maintenance project I've done and feel it's only fair to give back in some way.

All these tasks I've done myself with only ordinary hand tools you can buy anywhere. The only 'specialty' tools I've purchased are a hydraulic jack, jack stands (highly recommend for safety), and a cheap electric rattle gun (similar to this one from Amazon).

All work done in these guides is on a 1993 Mk1 Golf Karmann Cabriolet - your car may differ.

In each guide I have tried to give an idea of the cost and time involved as well as links to where I bought the replacement parts online.

Please note I am not a mechanic. These are just guides as to how I went about doing these things. Proceed at your own risk and seek always professional advice.

Routine Maintenance

Replace fuel filter
Replace air filter (1.8lt injected)
Oil and oil filter change
Change transmission fluid (5 speed manual)

Engine and Transmission

Replace rear transmission/gear box mount.
Adjust idle speed on 1.8lt injected engine.
Replace idle screw O ring.
Replace in-tank/lifter fuel pump
Tighten alternator belt
Replace thermostat
Replace rocker/valve cover gasket
Replace leaking radiator

Steering and Suspension

Install lower strut brace.
Replace rear springs and shock absorbers.


Replace fuse box.
Replace high-beam headlight bulb (GTI-style front).
Replace ignition switch.


Remove front seats.
Remove rear seat.
Replace broken window crank/winder.
Remove door card.


Repaint damaged plastic wheel arch.
Remove rear bumper (Clipper body kit).
Remove front bumper (Clipper body kit).
Remove door handles and replace door locks.