98 NB TDI hood will not latch (Safety latch sub system does engage). I have removed hood latch mechanism (2 6x25 torx head bolts, 1 5x18 torx head bolt). The two 6x25 bolts pass through the latch assembly via large square holes (allows for adjustment) and engages nuts welded to the frame of the car. The smaller 5x18 bolt is located at the bottom of the latch assembly and is the bolt is threaded directly onto the latch assembly - not the frame of the car like the two 6x25 bolts. Once I removed the latch assembly one can clearly see a hole (approx 1/2" diameter with a thin walled bushing pressed into the frame of the car. Thinking I might have had a part missing that installed into this bushing, I went to the dealer and we looked at the parts breakdown and it did not clearly show this area. No part was found. My question is what purpose is the 5x18 bolt (center lower position) that is threaded into the latch assembly? What is the method to rig/adjust the hood latch?
I think I answered my own question! It was a combination of a rough release mechanism (bought a new one) and vertical adjustment. The lower (middle) screw goes through the 1/2" thin walled bushing and threads into the release mechanism. The lower attach point of the release mechanism is tapped and lays in front of the thin wall bushing. When all three attach bolts are installed and torqued, they create a clamping force to hold the release mechanism in place. The bushing diameter provides a relatively wider surface area than if it just relied on thin sheet metal.
I hope you're still active on the forum, I'm having the same problem with my hood, it has always been a bit of a problem latching but has now become a binary 1, on, therefor no latching happening.
You're saying the middle lower screw is for adjusting the tension of the latch mechanism? Currently I can get the latch to lock onto a screwdriver I push down into the mechanism, but I can never get enough travel so that the hood will latch, it seems to stick. I now think adjusting this bottom screw may help the problem and will try loosening it. Currently it is turned to a limit, I thought I stripped the inner thread on the screw, which I may have done still.
Until I fix it I'm off the highway I guess.
Any other info on this subject would be appreciated.