I have a 2002 VW Passat 1.8T that just won't start after I stopped by a 711 for a snack. The key won't start the car anymore! A few odd things I noticed:

  1. There is not even a click when the key is turned to start.
  2. The doors will not lock with key and automatically unlock after 2 seconds.
  3. When key is in igntion and turned to start, battery light,EPC stay on.
  4. Brake light indicator on dash comes on as the key is turned to start.
  5. All windows, sunroof, power mirrors cannot be operated with the key on ON, but radio works. All interior lamps ( dome, reading, trunk) do not come on.Headlamp and other exterior lights work.
  6. Total loss of power-steering, the steering wheel is stiff but not locked- up.

FYI: Battery is new; I replaced the key fob battery,keyfob does not work.

I tried reprogramming the key fob, but that is not possible given that the car won't stay locked for 10 secs as stipulated in the programming steps! Called the dealership and talked briefly to the guy in the service dept, who was not helpful, just saying it must be an "electrical issue". Any help would be greatly appreciated.

  • Starter motor? Could that be the issue?
    – Grantly
    Commented Jan 10, 2018 at 1:22
  • Welcome to Motor Vehicle Maintenance & Repair! It sounds like you may have multiple issues. As for the doors not staying locked, this to me would indicate there may be an issue with one of the door sensors showing the doors open (or possibly one of the doors is open). This would include the trunk and possibly the hood sensors as well. When one of them is showing open, the rest of the car will not lock (at least in some cars). Power steering isn't going to work if the engine isn't running. I'm wondering if there might be a neutral safety switch issue. Commented Jan 10, 2018 at 14:48
  • Also, service writers aren't very smart about mechanical things. They just know how to make money for the dealership. For that matter, every VW service department I've ever dealt with is a PITB. Just don't do a very good job. Talk to a mechanic, if you can find one who'll talk to you. Commented Jan 10, 2018 at 14:50
  • Try wiggling the steering wheel while you turn the key to start the car to get it unlocked, I don’t know if it will help with starting issues but if you ever need to move the car this may help you Commented Jan 10, 2018 at 15:01

1 Answer 1


So after a week of research and troubleshooting, it turns out that Fuse# 14 (10amp) was the culprit!! The sure symptom that Fuse# 14 is the problem whenever a no-start with no audible "click" at start-up is the failure of the door chime and interior lamps ( dome, door and trunk lamps) to come on! My vagen is back on the road again, and I am thrilled! I hope this helps you next time you have a similar issue.

  • VW's and other VAG products in general are notorious for vague electrical seems-unsolvable issues, so congrats on finding the culprit. But you may encounter more of these situations in the future...
    – Bart
    Commented Jan 11, 2018 at 22:28
  • This is exactly the same problem I had, my first thought was Comfort control module, you just save me a trip to the dealership or auto mechanics and hundreds of dollars, thank you.
    – David Tsao
    Commented Jun 22, 2019 at 20:38

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