Obviously reliability is as big concern for people when purchasing a chip. Increasing the power output of the car will decrease the life of the engine, however, there have been very very few engine failures that have been proven to be caused by to the chip itself. Sure, small stuff like the dv or pcv failure occur, but these have also been known to fail on stock cars as well. Chipping is still always considered a risk, and if warranty is your main concern, then don’t chip the car. Also, driving styles will affect the reliability as well. Bottom line is, there are hundreds, probably thousands of people with chips with no major problems at all.
Warranty on the Car
Ahh…the famous question…will the chip void the warranty? The answer isn’t a resounding yes or no. The bottom line is no modification will outright void the warranty, however, if the dealer proves that the modification directly caused failure of a stock component, then they most likely will not honor warranty in that scenario. If however, you have a chip, and the radio stops working, then they will have to fix the radio under warranty.
Another important thing to note is that the original warranty on the car is through Volkswagen of South Africa. The dealer is a separate entity from VWSA and may refuse to service your car for almost any reason. Your motorplan is administered by ABSA and not VWSA. If you have a good relationship with your dealer, you should not have warranty problems.
Can the VW Find My Chip?
Certain chips provide a security lock-out option which doesn’t allow one to change the mode without knowing the code(APR), or using a specific flashloader (GIAC) . When it is used in conjunction with stock mode, the chip is very very hard for the dealer to detect. If VW decides to analyze the software code, then it won’t match stock, and they will know you are chipped, but this is an extremely unlikely scenario. Also, most chip vendors will flash you back to a stock VW file if you wanted to (though it might not be the one that your car came with)
Will Shifts be More “Jerky” With a Chip on the DSG?
When driving in “D”, the shifts should feel the same as stock. Some people have reported harsher shifts on certain files of certain manufacturers, however, at this time, I believe that it has either been fixed, or a fix is currently in the works. If you do experience harsher shifts with your chip, then you should talk to your chip manufacturer about it, and if they say it isn’t a common problem, then you should start a thread to find out who else on the forums also has the same problems.
Chips & Exhaust
For the mkv, an exhaust is generally sold as two parts, the downpipe (which includes the cat) and the catback section.
-A cat-back exhaust can be used with any chip without any issues.
-A turbo-back exhaust (TBE) or a downpipe(dp) is more critical as it changes the catalytic converter (cat).
- TDI models through 2006 have no sensors after the catalyst, so the ECU has no idea what's going on with the catalyst or even whether it exists. (The upcoming 2009 model will be an entirely different story.)
The Vag-Com is a tool made by Ross-Tech (http://www.ross-tech.com
) that works similar to the dealer scan tool. It does a variety of things, but in the context of a chip, it will allow you to log data on your car. Some vendors will do vag-com logs, but some won’t. It isn’t required to log data via the vag-com when installing the chip, but having baseline data is very useful to have later on so you can see when you have a problem and what changed. If your dealer doesn’t do it, then you can take logs yourself if so inclined.
Can you adjust the boost, timing, fueling, idle, fuel trims, and other settings?
Unlike the 1.8t, at this time, there isn’t a program that allows you to adjust it via the Vag-Com cable.
How can the chip be removed?
The only way to remove the chip is to reflash over it.
-Some people get reflashed by the dealer due to a recall, so the chip is removed. In this case, go back to the dealer who installed the chip, and they should reflash you for free, though some may charge an installation fee.
-Unplugging the battery will not remove the chip
-Some manufacturers have said that they could chip over another manufacturer’s software. If you plan to do this, then you should check with them first.
Does Chipping Affect Fuel economy?
Yes and No. If you drive with a light foot (i.e. stay outside of boost), then economy shouldn’t be affected, or you might even get slightly increased mileage. If you drive with a heavyfoot, then the mileage will be less.
Proper maintenance is critical to the car’s health. It is even more so important in chipped cars. VW requires oil changes at 5k, 10k, and every 10k thereafter under NORMAL use. Depending on how you drive the car, you might want to reduce the oil change interval, and other service requirements.
Can I Make my Own Chip?
Yes, you can make your own chip, if you had the money and knowledge to do so. Be advised that the cost of making your own chip would many times higher than buying an off the shelf chip. And if you don’t know what you’re doing, then you can cause lots of damage. If you are still interested in making your own chip, then this is a good place to start:http://www.checksumm.com/chiptuning/index.php