Auto Wipers & Oil Consumption

11,000 miles, 28th October 2004

The clocks are just about to go back but already the days are short and the night time long. The Golf is doing its best to help matters. The exterior lighting control is almost permanently set to Auto. It seems to be turning the lights on and off in exactly the same situations where I would do this manually. I do think I will, when I get the opportunity, try turning off the 'coming home' function on the lights. This isn't something which I have ever found useful and I'm just waiting for a stranger to tell me I've left my lights on. The 'leaving home' function is fine though and its nice that you can configure all these elements individually. My Golf does not have the configuration menu facility in the Multi-Function Display (MFD) and so my options are either to ask a VW dealer to alter these settings for me or to buy one of these pieces of software which allow you to connect your laptop to the car and make the changes yourself. I'm seriously considering the latter.

My use of the auto-wipers facility has changed a little. Like the lights, I used to keep the control in the auto position. The main problem I found with doing this that the flick-wipe facility was then two positions away on the stalk and this is a facility I sometimes prefer to use. Another reason is that, during heavy rain when the auto function has the wipers moving at speed 1, when you want to turn off the ignition, you risk the wipers not being parked. In such situations I prefer to stop the wipers before turning off the ignition and so I have to switch the wipers from Auto to Off. Consequently, I now normally prefer to keep the wiper control in the off position and think of the Auto position as more of an intelligent intermittent position. That said, I still occasionally notice the wipers have been left in Auto mode because it is so good at deciding when wipers are and are not required.

Since my last diary entry I have had to top up the engine oil twice. The first time the low oil level warning light came on I was quite worried. I hadn't expected to have to do anything like that on a new car. I have since learnt this is normal on new Golfs and only after about 20,000 miles should I expect not to have to top-up between services. I added 500 ml at about 6,500 miles and again at about 10,000 miles. I've already bought my second 1 litre bottle of Long Life Oil ready for the next top-up, expected around the 15,000 mile mark. A topup then should then be enough to get the car through to its first service which the MFD tells me to expect at about 19,000 miles. This using of oil has led me to believe the car is still being 'run-in' and can only improve further with time. It can't get any better can it?

Fuel consumption does appear to have increased slightly. I'm not sure however whether this is due to the onset of winter or me pretty much abandoning use of the ECON button on the climate control. The air temperature control has pretty much remained fixed just below the 21C mark for the past month or so and the climate control does an excellent job at quickly getting the air to temperature and maintaining it. I also read that the using the ECON function also prevents the electric coolant heater in the engine from facilitating quick warm-ups in cold weather. I didn't want it to stop doing that for either my sake or the engine's!

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