Hello, I'm Jason. I will do my best to answer your question quickly and accurately using the information you have provided.
so, I'll first want to ask you how many miles are on your car
ok, so let's talk about recent maintenance history, say, over the last 25k miles
there really isn't a traditional tune up done on these cars, beyond plugs and an air filter
The owner of the car is out of the country. My wife is renting her house and gets the use of the car. The car, the house, and my wife are all in Reno, NV.
alright....interesting situation...so she's wanting to make sure the car stays in a good state of repair
I have no maintenance history but the car is running very rough and the mechanice my wife took it to today says it needs a tune up and wanted to charge her $400.
Yes and I want to make sure the car doesn't break down somewhere inconvenient while she is driving it.
Sure, totally understood....
typically, when one of these cars runs rough, it's not going to be related to a normal tune-up issue, but I'm sure there's a check engine light related to it...
The check engine light is on.
ok, let me give you advice first....
no chain store tune up
2nd part....I need to know the engine trouble codes
Need a bit more explanation on this request; what codes?
ah ok....let me give a bit more information....
so there's a check engine light on.....
that means that the engine control module has recorded a fault
that fault needs to be read out with, at bare minimum, a generic On-Board Diagnostic II scan tool....
there will be a list of codes that the scan will show....
and with as many of these cars that I work on, if I had that list, I could likely offer some very specific advice on how to fix them....
My strong advice now, is to research a place in Reno that specializes in Euro cars
but not a dealer
So, I know your original question was "how much should a tune up cost on a 2002 VW", we've gone a bit beyond this
Hopefully the advice helps, and I'd be happy to continue on when we have some more information
and with the silence....hopefully I haven't overwhelmed you with information
still with me?
I'm a bit out of time now