Volkswagen Golf/Jetta 2 manual

Condenser - testing, removal and refitting
Ignition system - contact breaker type / Condenser - testing, removal and refitting

1 A faulty condenser can cause complete failure of the ignition system, as the points will be prevented from interrupting the low tension circuit.

2 To test the condenser, remove the distributor cap, rotor arm and dust cover and rotate the engine until the contact points are closed. Switch on the ignition and separate the points. If this is accompanied by a strong blue flash, the condenser is faulty. Note that a weak white spark is normal.

3 A further test can be made for short circuiting by removing the condenser and connecting a test lamp and leads to the supply lead and body (ie. connecting the condenser in series with a 12 volt supply). If the test lamp lights, the condenser is faulty.

4 If correct operation of the condenser is in doubt, substitute a new unit and check whether the fault persists.

5 To remove the condenser, unscrew its retaining screw and disconnect the LT supply lead (at the coil on some models) (see illustration).

6.5 Condenser location
6.5 Condenser location

6 Withdraw the condenser far enough to disconnect the moving contact supply lead then withdraw the condenser. If the moving contact supply lead has insufficient length, it will be necessary to remove the distributor cap, rotor arm, dust cover and bearing plate (if applicable) first.

7 Refitting is a reversal of removal.

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