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Golf MK4 GT TDI 130
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Hi,

I've always looked on here for advice but this is the first time i have posted as I need help with something.
I own a very reliable Golf MK4 1.9 GT TDI 130 and have done for more than ten years and want to keep it as along as I can.
I have recently had to have the under trays for the engine removed as this was constantly scraping on the floor despite several attempts to put it back up.
I have been advised two different stories with regards these guards.
Some people say you don't need them as all they offer is some aerodynamic and stop oil dripping on your drive and others say they offer crucial protection for the engine.
I am leaning towards the latter but which one is best as the ones I have seen online all look different to mine which is much longer & wider
And if you recommend I replace it, should I just get another plastic one or go with something like this Steel sump guard for VW Golf mk4

Many thanks for your feedback
 

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the only reason that thing is there is to dampen the engine noise and to keep road debris away from the engine... I ran mine for 8 years in a row without the thing on, it was my daily and never had a spot of bother with it off engine noise wasn't to bad either... oww and i lowered my car at first all the way down(-100 on all corners) than when i found it to harsh i put it back up to 55/60 (the sweet spot on the ATS coilovers i bought) and i never even scraped the front bumper let alone hit the sump.

if you want to protect the engine than go for the metal sump-guards... as the oem ABS plastic undertray doesn't protect the engine at all the first thing that is sharp and/or hard enough will crack the sump if it hits something... in that case the metal sump-gaurd offers some protection, but no guarantee it won't still damage or crack the sump (all depends on the thing that hits it)

But if you never drive on bad roads.. you can just leave it off use that money for other things like maintenance, wheels, modifications (the once that matter like big brakes), suspension upgrades etc etc etc.
 

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As NP alludes to they don't really offer physical protection, but they do aid how quickly the engine warms up offering faster warm up and less internal wear, use less fuel - plus reduction in noise & also improved aero too.

They can be a pain to deal with in glass reinforced plastic, for this reason they usually get binned by mechanics as they cant be ar$ed to refit.
But even more awkward to deal with in steel + there isn't an obvious need, that is unless you live halfway up a mountain and actively channel your inner Colin McRae.
 

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I got my Golf without one, and it's been fine. Perhaps the corrosion on some parts has been sped up by the lack of one, but otherwise I cannot think of any other downside I've taken note of.

As pointed out above, they can be a nightmare to refit. Broken clips and mounting points mean they end up being held on with cable ties, or just left off.
 

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I'm going to dis-agree with the others.
First do you really believe that VW would take this cost if they didn't have to?.. and everyother manufacturer.
How much physical protection do they give? As others have pointed out, if you drive on rough ground, not that much, but they aren't mean to. The physical protection they offer is on normal tarmac road and protect the engine (hyd pump, alternater, starter motor, etc) from the grit, salt, occassional cat, hedgehog, and pentrating spray thrown up by the wheels. Now penetrating spray can take months, even years, to have an effect on seals but eventually they do. I see it on my car, the underside of all the above show pitting and rust, the steering rack is coated in grit and the subframe and floor pan coating is deterioating. All medium/long term decay. If you have had ten years of protection, maybe you can think of it as money in the bank and spend it by not re-fitting them but don't expect another ten years.
You can by a packet of new clips for these cars for a few pounds on ebay, if you still have the panels.
 

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the whole reason they put them there is noise isolation (less noise makes for a quieter car which in the end gives a more upperclass feeling to the car) nothing else... if you drive through a puddle the inside gets wet, the side panels help stop some spray but with those gaps in them... well sorry your theory has just gone out the window...
apart from that when the extra isolation material gets wet, it stays wet for way longer (than it would if you've removed the lot) and the parts on the subframe that are in contact with it will start rusting quicker and for longer.. ultimately ending in you needing to replace the subframe. the extra benefit of the better airflow under the car is a plus but not the reason why they put it there.... if that was the reason the cars would have a completely closed bottom ( like most manufacturers race cars do)

So let's agree to disagree...
 
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