Unfortunately, I can be rather impatient. As such, I occasionally pull the key out of the ignition a little too fast (to which this post will explain the too). When this happens, there is a weird and ever-so-faint noise which sounds like a vibration. I used to think it was outside noise, but then I noticed that, if I reinsert the key and turn until the electrics come on (not the engine - apologies for the advanced technical language), it'll stop.

Does anyone know what this is? Is there a fault with my car or am I just being too impatient and not giving the car enough time to switch everything off? Thanks!

Car: Volkswagen Golf TDi (mk5).

  • When this noise happens, if you do nothing (i.e. don't turn the key to the "on" position) will it go on indefinitely, or does it only happen for a little while? If so, how long? If it's a brief noise, my gut says it's no problem, could be a coolant after-run pump, or part of the anti-shudder system that helps shut off your diesel engine smoothly, or any one of a number of other things,
    – mac
    Nov 14, 2012 at 18:27

1 Answer 1


On some cars the fan for the heat, defrost, a/c does not have an "off" setting. The fan runs on low speed whenever the car is on. It is possible that the ignition switch is worn allowing the key to be removed with a set of contacts still partially engaged. If you turn the key to the "on" position turn the blower motor on high. Find a spot under the dash where the fan sounds the loudest. Try to replicate the conditions that cause the vibration and see if the vibration comes from the same area. .

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