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Common Engine Problems on the Porsche 911 Carrera
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

Common Engine Problems on the Porsche 911 Carrera

Time:

As long as it takes

Tab:

$0 to $10,000

Talent:

***

Tools:

Varies

Applicable Models:

Porsche 996 Carrera models (1999-05)
Porsche 997 Carrera models (2005-08)

Parts Required:

Replacement upgrades

Hot Tip:

Don't wait until your engine blows up to make some necessary upgrades

Performance Gain:

Long, reliable engine life

Complementary Modification:

Clutch replacement

Using the expertise gained from years of designing and building engines, Porsche developed what is known as the M96 engine for the introduction of the Boxster in 1996. The horizontally opposed engine was developed with a throwback to the traditionally air-cooled motors, having kept the opposing cylinder or boxer layout. The engine was designed from the outset with the goal of providing a common platform for both the Boxster and the upcoming Porsche Carrera. The motor was indeed scalable, encompassing a displacement that ranged from 2.5 liters all the way up to 3.8 liters at the end of its production run.

The M96 (and subsequent similar M97) water-cooled engine is definitely a strong-performing engine, however along the stages of its development it has suffered from some design deficiencies that have been identified and corrected by Porsche over the 11-year lifespan of the engine. It's not uncommon to find a car listed for sale with "new factory engine recently installed" in the advertisement. No one but Porsche knows exactly how many engines were replaced under its recently discontinued engine exchange program. However, simply swapping out a broken engine for another one does not address known weaknesses in the engine due to design deficiencies. The purpose of this project is to identify some of the problem areas of the engine and offer up solutions on how to fix and/or prevent any damage from happening to your engine.

Rear Main Seal Leaks: When the M96 engine first came out, it was perhaps most known for its rear main seal (RMS) leaks. While some of the RMS problems were probably actually intermediate shaft cover leaks (see next section), there were definitely some problems with the seals on the early cars. For the most part this was a "cosmetic" issue, as the leaks did not tend to affect performance, unless they became so severe that they began to affect the proper operation of the clutch. But many engines were torn apart and/or replaced by Porsche under warranty due to this problem, because when you pay $75,000 for a high-performance sports car, you expect it not to leak.

It's not really 100 percent clear what the causes the leaky rear main seals. One cause may be the fact that the crankshaft has insufficient support on the rear end. It also may be caused by the fact that the crankshaft carrier support is only pinned minimally in one plane to the outer case. This can lead to shuffling of the carrierâÂ"shuffle pinning the crankshaft carrier as is commonly done when prepping an early 911 engine for the track can help the problem.

The seal has been updated to a 997 "Cayenne-style" part number since the engine was originally introduced, and for the most part the engines no longer leak from this area when this new and improved seal is installed. If you find that your engine is leaking from the rear main seal (also known as the flywheel seal), then simply install a new one while adding a little bit of Curil-T sealant to help keep it dry (see Photo 10 of Pelican Technical Article: Clutch Replacement on the Porsche 911 Carrera).

Intermediate Shaft Bearing Failures: The intermediate shaft bearing is probably the most troublesome of all of the M96/M97 engine problems. The intermediate shaft bearing (IMS bearing) supports the intermediate shaft on the flywheel end of the motor. Porsche designed these motors using a sealed ball bearing that is pressed into the intermediate shaft. These types of bearings are typically used in devices like copy machines and other machinery used in dry conditions. In theory, the area where Porsche designed the bearing to sit is supposed to be dry. However, after years of use within the engine, it would appear that oil and contaminants from the engine seep past the bearing seal, wash out the original lubricant, and become trapped inside. The result is that the bearing now operates in a less-than-ideal environment and begins to wear prematurely. When the bearing wears out, the timing chains on the engine may disengage, and the engine will quickly self-destruct. When the bearing does fail, foreign object debris from the bearing circulates throughout the engine, causing further damage to other areas in the engine.

On the early cars, Porsche also used a center bolt to secure the IMS bearing that was too weak and sometimes snapped. If this bolt breaks, then the intermediate shaft begins to float around in the bottom of the engine, and you can soon experience catastrophic engine failure.

This area is also highly prone to leaks. The seal around the intermediate shaft cover can leak, and it has since been updated and redesigned to prevent leakage. In addition, the three bolts that hold the intermediate shaft cover are through holes that exit into the cavity of the engine case. You must coat these bolts when reinstalling them in order to prevent oil from leaking out through the bolt holes. In general, if this area is leaking, it may indeed be a sign that your intermediate shaft is failing and you should inspect it immediately.

The good news is that the IMS bearing problems are all fixable, thanks in part to a retrofit kit that can be installed with the engine still in the car. See Project 14 for full instructions on how to update your engine.

Cylinder Liner Cracks: In an effort to reduce costs during production, Porsche utilized a type of insert-mold casting process to directly incorporate Lokasil cylinder liners into the case. While this is a neat way to reduce the total number of parts used in the engine, this design basically casts a wearable part into the engine case. There is no factory replacement for the linersâÂ"when they wear, the factory expects you to buy a new engine case. In addition, the design of the cylinder liners allows them to "float" within an area filled with coolant.

Excess vibration and twisting from the normal operation of the engine appears to be causing some cracking in these liners, resulting in a small chunk of the liner breaking off. This "D-chunk" problem seems ironically to occur mostly in gently driven cars. 911 Carreras that are driven hard at the track or on the street do not tend to see this type of damage. At least with respect to the track cars, one theory is that these cars tend to have their oil changed much more often. The problem affects mostly the 2.5 Boxster and Carrera 3.4 engines. When this failure happens, you will see oil and coolant begin to mix together or a slight unexplained coolant loss.

If your engine experiences this failure, it can be rebuilt using LN Engineering's Nickasil liners installed. They take your old case, machine out the cracked or damaged Lokasil liners, and install an aluminum Nickies insert, which is stronger and more reliable than the factory cast-in liner. In addition, with the installation of the liners it's fairly easy to increase the bore of the cylinders, which translates into increased displacement and more horsepower. If you go this route, you will also need to use some aftermarket pistons and perhaps update the software in your DME to accommodate the larger displacement.

Engine Casting Porosity: As mentioned in the previous section, Porsche used a new cost-effective method to cast most of the oil and water cooling passages directly into the engine case. This reduced the total part count for the engine and also helped reduce assembly time and production cost. Unfortunately, the advanced casting technique seems to have led to a number of engine cases experiencing what has been called "engine porosity." There is not a lot of information available on this problem, but it seems to be related to problems with the initial casting process.

In some cases, there appeared to have been a leak through the internal crankcase walls. The process of pouring the molten aluminum must be tightly controlled, otherwise pockets of air forming in the aluminum may result. Most of the time, post-casting inspections will reveal these flaws, but apparently some were still manufactured into running engines. The result is that oil and water became mixed within these engines. This resulted in coolant being found within the oil (turning it a milky brown color) or oil being found inside the coolant tank.

The expansion and contraction of the engine due to the heat of normal operation can expose this problem as well. I have also heard of engines that simply wept a slow bead of oil right through the walls of the engine case when running. Unfortunately, there's nothing that can be done to fix this problem, short of scraping the engine. The good news is that most of these problems were discovered on the cars when they were new, and the engines were since replaced under warranty.

Chain Tensioner Failures: There's been some chatter lately about chain tensioners failing on some of the M96 motors. If your car is noisy on startup and then suddenly quiets down, it may indicate a problem with your chain tensioners. Porsche updated the design of the tensioners in 2000 (TSB Group 1 NR 8/00) and replaced them with an improved design. I recommend that you update and replace your chain tensioners if they are the older style. See Project 16 for more information on how to identify and replace them.

Cylinder Head Cracks: In general, the cylinder heads are pretty well designed on the M96 engine. However, on some 3.2, 3.4, and 3.6 engines, small cracks can sometimes develop around the seats of exhaust valves and extend to the spark plug hole. The mounting point for the cam follower housing is also a weak point. Often these cracks can lead to coolant and oil mixing together. This is not an uncommon problem with automotive cylinder heads in general and can often be repaired by a skilled machine shop that can weld aluminum heads.

Oil System Inadequacy: The air-cooled predecessor to the M96 engine incorporated a dry-sump system that was designed to keep a significant amount of oil in reserve for extended performance driving. With the introduction of the M96 engine, Porsche moved away from that design, primarily due to the high cost of implementing a separate dry-sump system. The M96/M97 motors instead were designed with a compromise system, which has an oil sump built into the bottom of the engineâÂ"a kind of hybrid between a dedicated dry-sump system and a typical wet sump. As a result of the lower oil holding capacity and other factors, the M96/M97 engines tend to suffer more from oil starvation problems, particularly during high performance driving.

There are a few things you can do to protect against oil starvation problems. Firstly, be sure that your oil level is always at the high-level mark of your dipstick. The M96/M97 engine doesn't have a vast extra supply of oil, so if you're a quart low, it's a significant amount. You can also add in a deep-sump kit (see Pelican Technical Article: Installing a Deep Sump Kit - Porsche 911), which will expand the oil capacity of the sump by about a half a quart. Finally, you can install an Accusump oil accumulator system that will protect against unexpected oil pressure drops (see Figure 5 of Pelican Technical Article: Track Prep for the Porsche 911 Carrera).

In addition to the standard issues associated with the non-traditional sump system, the flapper windows on the bottom of the engine are manufactured out of plastic and can break off inside the sump and clog the oil pickup tube. This leads to oil starvation and complete engine failure. The solution is to remove the bottom sump and inspect the oil control windows (see Pelican Technical Article: Installing a Deep Sump Kit - Porsche 911) and replace them if they are missing or damaged. You can also add aftermarket stainless steel windows for added protection.

As mentioned previously in Pelican Technical Article: Oil Change - Porsche 911 Carrera, I do not care for Porsche's standard recommended oil change interval of 15,000 miles. The oil in engines tends to become contaminated with fuel and coolant, particularly as the cars age and seals and piston rings begin to wear. I generally like to run a thicker oil and change it every 3,000 to 5,000 miles. Keeping the oil fresh may help prevent some IMS bearing issues and generally prolong the life of your engine.

Connecting Rod Bolt Failures: The connecting rods that are used on the 911 Carrera are forged out of steel and utilize what is known as a cracked-rod design. This means that the rods are forged and machined, and then broken along pre-set stress points. Then the bearings are installed and the rods are put back together again. This cracked-rod design is cheaper to manufacture, and the rod bolts don't need to have integrated "guide" pins as part of their design (like the rod bolts used on the older air-cooled engines).

Unfortunately, it would appear that the rod bolt diameter may be too small for the large loads that these engines place on the rods. A number of recent failures in some early high-mileage engines have hinted that the rod bolts are too small and may be a failure point for the connecting rod.

The failure occurs when the engine is consistently revved at the high end of its rpm range. The stock rod bolts are designed to stretch and permanently deform when tightened down to their final torque values. At rpm's of 6700 or higher, the rotating mass on the end of each rod (namely the piston and the mass of the rod itself) has a tendency to stretch the rod bolt further. Repeated stretching of the rod bolts causes them to deform and loosen up which can result in rod separation and complete engine failure.

Unfortunately, due to the cracked-rod design, the connecting rods cannot easily be rebuilt. The solution is to install aftermarket connecting rods that can accommodate larger, race proven fasteners like the ones available from ARP.

Variocam Solenoids: It's not uncommon for the variocam solenoids to fail on one side, which will result in a uneven or lopey idle. Moisture can get into the mechanism causing it to corrode and eventually fail. The DME computer should easily be able to detect this failure and trigger a check engine light (CEL).

Paper Oil Filters: The oil filter system on the 911 Carrera is a bit lame in my opinion. Using the stock paper filter can lead to a disintegration of the filter, which can then clog the oil passages of the engine. Although this is a relatively rare problem, I have heard of it happening with cheaper-brand oil filters. Stick to the good-quality brands, and also consider upgrading to the LN Engineering screw-on oil filter upgrade (see Pelican Technical Article: Oil Change - Porsche 911 Carrera).

Air-Oil Separator Failures: The air-oil separator is an emissions device that draws vapors from the engine crankcase and then sends them back into the intake manifold. When this unit fails, the result is oil sucked out of the engine and into the intake. While the air-oil separator will not cause immediate mechanical damage to your engine, it may make it smoke tremendously and/or run roughly (see Pelican Technical Article: Porsche 911 Air Oil Separator).

Oil Change Intervals: The best recommendation to any modern Porsche owner is to change their oil more often, say every 5,000 miles, as well as use a minimum 5w40 viscosity oil. On cars not equipped with Variocam Plus (2006 and earlier), use of a 15w50 or 20w50 provides a much higher film strength, which will improve internal bearing life considerably.

Low-Temperature Theromostat: Also useful is the LN Engineering low-temperature thermostat (see Pelican Technical Article: Porsche 911 Carrera Water Pump and Thermostat Replacement). This specially designed thermostat starts to opens at 160 degrees F instead of 187 degrees F for the factory unit. Keeping the oil cool is key to keeping it fresh, and the lower operating temperatures also help give you a bit more horsepower too.

This photo shows the flywheel end of an M96 motor.
Figure 1

This photo shows the flywheel end of an M96 motor. This particular motor is a 3.4-liter crate motor from Porsche that has been updated with the latest and greatest improvements from the factory. The intermediate shaft has the updated bolt (yellow arrow), but the issue of the intermediate shaft failures has still not been completely addressed in this redesign. Although these updated engines tend to suffer from fewer problems than do the early ones, there is still a risk of IMS bearing failure. The rear main seal shown here is the updated and improved one that should not leak.

This is the infamous â€Ã...
Figure 2

This is the infamous "D-Chunk" problem that happens sometimes on these motors. Occurring almost exclusively with the two cylinders in the middle, it is theorized that excess twisting and vibration causes cracks to occur in the cylinder walls. Found mostly on the 2.5 and the 3.4 engines, this problem is almost non-existent on the 3.2-liter engines because the 3.2 has thicker cylinder walls. The solution is to machine the case to accept cylinder liners (next photo).

Here is a fully repaired M96 engine with the LN Engineering Nickies liners installed.
Figure 3

Here is a fully repaired M96 engine with the LN Engineering Nickies liners installed. The case is prepared by machining out the old liner and completely removing the section that floats in the water jackets. Then, a Nikasil cylinder is press-fit into the case in its place. It's a clever solution to the irreplaceable case problem. The case itself must be a good rebuildable core and have no major issues (no major damage, no case porosity issues). In addition to replacing the liners with new and improved ones, the process allows you to increase the displacement of the engine at the same time.

Although it may not look like much, this crack is enough to cause a lot of problems.
Figure 4

Although it may not look like much, this crack is enough to cause a lot of problems. Cracks like these can cause oil/coolant to mix, resulting in contamination of the coolant and/or oil. Cylinder head cracks are common among water-cooled cars and can sometimes be repaired by grinding down the head and then re-welding it.

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Comments and Suggestions:
smoke Comments: I am the original owner of a 2000 911 Carrera with 61000 miles. Had the IMS replaced on a preventative basis at 53000 miles.
Had oil changes every year and recently discovered some metal chips in the oil change.
Should I be concerned?
Body and Interior are in immaculate condition and recently replaced the convertible top.
Appreciate your comments!
November 27, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would be concerned if it is ferrous metal. Might be a good idea to get an oil analysis done. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Burnie Comments: Hi,How much would an inspection cost of a 996 year 2000,
I have a chance to buy one,but there is particels with in the water coolant,
If i had to replace all parts of the engine what would the ruff cost Be?labour and parts how long a job? by the way great right ups and replies Thanks for your time burnie.
November 9, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I am not sure what the cost is in your area. Call a few shops and ask for a quote. It is also a good idea to have them confirm what the issue is.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
engelfisch Comments: I have a '99 911 Carerra. The oil pressure gauge goes to 5 when I turn the ignition to the on position without the engine running and it stays there after I turn on the car. It goes to 0 when I turn the car off. Could this be a bad sensor or a cable problem?
October 20, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Could be the sensor. Try unplugging it, does the gauge do the same thing? - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Jamesr Comments: Hi, I have a carrera 911 1998. When I start the car it will just die, I have to apply the throttle to keep the revs up to stop this happening. After a while it will tick over. Whilst driving it is fine but if I come to a stop it will die. Any ideas?
October 18, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Locate and clean the idle control valve. That may help. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
PlymuffNeil Comments: Hi there, I have a 2001 Carrera 4 3.6 litre and during a day at the track a couple of weeks ago each time I re-started the car it started to smoke white smokeon restart for about 5 seconds. Since then it's not smoked at all on restart and has been absolutely fine even when driven hard on the road. Any ideas what could cause this and should I be worried?
October 12, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Check oil and coolant levels, if they are Ok, monitor for smoke and fluid levels over the new weeks or so. Look for any changes. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
dan Comments: How to tell if the preowned Porche that you purchased has these upgrades .
October 6, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Ask for the repair history from Porsche or the seller, use your VIN when asking Porsche. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Ted Comments: Re: starting problems with 996
Speaking with a friend he mentioned having similar problems quite some time ago due to water in the gas and suggested adding gas line antifreeze to the fuel tank.
I did that - no problems since.
September 24, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the additional info. We appreciate it.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
PRS Mike Comments: Does A-N-Y-O-N-E know, have info, any and I mean ANY idea as to what the P300 codes which are followed by "implausible misfire" actually mean??? It throws the engine light and it is always the same code. All 6 cylinders. Everything is new and dealer installed...Plugs, wires, etc. The light shows up randomly and is usually with climate change. I'm a four season state. ....Thanks in advance all....
September 18, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: It means the engine is misfiring and DME can;t determine which cylinder it is, or all cylinders are misfiring randomly. I would check spark, fuel and compression on all cylinders. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Ted Comments: Hi Nick, Casey:
I have what seems to be an unusual situation. I have a '99 C2 with the 3.4 L which has given me no problems for the last four years.
Then last weekend it didn't start/run in the morning. When I turned the key the engine fired up but when I let go of the key the motor just faded away. I tried a number of times - sometimes it just turned over, other times it tried to start but would not run. I tried again at the end of the day and it started and ran idled normally. I did some research and found that problem symptoms with the idle air control valve seemed to match.
Several days later when I was driving on a small highway at 50 mph, the power disappeared and all the dash lights came as the motor just quit. So much for the theory of the idle air control valve...
I took it to my mechanic to check for codes - none that were remotely relevant. I spoke with an ex-Porsche mechanic that I respect - he could think of nothing that would help explain the problem.
I can cope with the starting issue, but having the engine die during a lap at the track could result in bad consequences.
I'd really appreciate your thoughts asap as I have an event coming up very soon.
Thanks
September 16, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: If you suspect the idle valve. Hold the throttle open slightly when starting and idling if the problem goes away it could be the valve. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
ucbkid Comments: I just experienced an issue on my 2004 C4S. I bought this 2 years ago with 34+ K miles. I now have about 45K. I have my oil tested at Blackstone and have no issues reported. I have about 2000 miles on the latest change with 20-50 oil. The problem I encountered was on a very cobbly surface after a 90 degree ramp back over a freeway in a non aggressive turn. After showing down for oncoming traffic on the other side of the freeway I reaccelerated modestly and heard a racthety noise and no power response at all- speed was no more than 45 MPH on a Triptonic. I backed off and the noise disappeared. After 50 yards I stepped on the gas and got the same noise and no poswer response. Backed off and the noise disappeared. Repeated a 3rd time and now turned off an exit. Now on good pavement. No issues. Guages all normal. After a stop for the off ramp red light I resumed driving- NO issues. Drove another 4 miles in low density city traffic without any repeat. No leaks observed. After a meeting drove home mostly freeway 25 miles w/o a problem at up to 75 MPH but w/o aggressive acceleration.his am I had a smog due and passed California Emissions test. Driving appears normal. No issues. Mixed driving yields around 21-22 mpg. I am retired and in a suburban area. Not a lot of idling and I am a modest driver but out of the city drive 70-80. Oil is topped off and engine does not burn oil. Car drive about 4 times a week.

Have you seen this and if so- what is the fix?
September 9, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Have not heard of that issue. Check your trans fluid level. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Shawnspi Comments: In response to the below. There are no fault codes. I see the idle, when sitting in the driveway, bounces quite a bit.

------
Comments: 2000 Porsche 911 - 85k miles.
Recent repairs: New Battery, New Alternator, New Cats.

New issue:
Here are the symptoms.

Car is warm, so it has been driving some time.
We come to a stop, the RPMS drop below 600 sometimes under 500, the OIL Light flicks on for a second, the idle comes back up; maybe to 700, and the oil light goes off.


I have checked the oil, using the dashboard sensor as well as the the dipstick, there is plenty of oil.
The oil pressure gauge goes up as you increase speed, so we are getting pressure.
There is no smell of burning oil, and no loss of power. The engine temperature is normal.
There are no fault codes.

I can replicate the issue with a warm engine fairly easily.
Once the car is warm, in park, I can gun the engine to 4,000 RPMS, take my foot off the gas.
The car will then drop down to under 600 RPMs, light will flash on, idle will bounce back up, and light will flash off.

Ideas? How dangerous is it to drive?

July 20, 2016
Followup from the Pelican Staff: if oil pressure is dropping or the engine is stalling it can dangerous for the engine and yourself.

The idle problem may be the only issue. I would start there. Start by checking for fault codes. If it is a misfire or fuel trim issue crankcase breather a fault code should be stored.- Nick at Pelican Parts
August 14, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Then check for vacuum leaks or cylinder misfires. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
stvsxm Comments: hi, looking at a 99 euro spec Carrera cab with 100k miles. car is immaculate in all respects from an exterior and interior standpoint. buying maybe from original owner. car would barely start on a nearly dead battery owner says someone left lights on and its not a normal issue but when it did motor sounded crisp and sharp but would not idle at all. also had what , at first blush , like exhaust noise but then car stalled and could not restart w/ dead bat so could not investigate. will be no prob to charge bat and get test drive and examine further but before I go thru all that and after reading all of the comments here, I am wondering if this car is over priced at 10k $ . if its going to need the ims/ clutch /seals etc etc at 100k miles doesn't that push it well past retail ?
July 31, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Hard to say. Start with the blue book value. Then have a PPI performed to see what work needs to be done. From there you can add up what can be considered the purchase cost. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
KennyB Comments: I am looking at a 2005 911 carrera cabriolet. The engine has a ticking/tapping sound at idle which goes away once revved to 1000-1200 rpm and cannot hear the tapping when revved high. Ideas?
July 24, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Could be a valve tap or oil pressure issue. Start by checking engine oil level and pressure. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Shawnspi Comments: 2000 Porsche 911 - 85k miles.
Recent repairs: New Battery, New Alternator, New Cats.

New issue:
Here are the symptoms.

Car is warm, so it has been driving some time.
We come to a stop, the RPMS drop below 600 sometimes under 500, the OIL Light flicks on for a second, the idle comes back up; maybe to 700, and the oil light goes off.


I have checked the oil, using the dashboard sensor as well as the the dipstick, there is plenty of oil.
The oil pressure gauge goes up as you increase speed, so we are getting pressure.
There is no smell of burning oil, and no loss of power. The engine temperature is normal.
There are no fault codes.

I can replicate the issue with a warm engine fairly easily.
Once the car is warm, in park, I can gun the engine to 4,000 RPMS, take my foot off the gas.
The car will then drop down to under 600 RPMs, light will flash on, idle will bounce back up, and light will flash off.

Ideas? How dangerous is it to drive?
July 20, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: if oil pressure is dropping or the engine is stalling it can dangerous for the engine and yourself.

The idle problem may be the only issue. I would start there. Start by checking for fault codes. If it is a misfire or fuel trim issue (crankcase breather) a fault code should be stored.- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Bob Comments: Hi:
I'm looking at buying a 2008 Targa 4S 16,500 original miles, good service records. Buying from a Porsche dealer with a 12M 12K warranty $56K
After reading the above i was wonder what if anything i should be looking for before purchasing?
July 7, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would a prepurchase inspection (PPI) from an outside party. There are a ton of items that need to be checked on any vehicle being purchased used. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
henry Comments: low oil pressure at idle after engine rebuild 2002 Porsche 996
July 1, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Have you checked oil pressure to confirm it is low? I would assume a bearing or pump is dropping pressure.- Nick at Pelican Parts  
John A Comments: Thanks for the prompt response. Is it a very involved/expensive job replacing that bearing? Thanks
June 23, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: If needed, it will require a rebuild of the final drive gear bearings. it is a major repair. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
John A Comments: Hi my car is 911 2002 3.6 Carrera 2. Now done 63000 miles. Are there any known issues relating to the diff. I have what can only be described as a high pitch whine/whistle but only really audible at speeds between 65 and 75 mph or higher.

This is only evident on a light trailing throttle not when off the throttle nor under harder acceleration.

I say the diff but of course it might not be. As it is only under gentle acceleration at speed I have discounted anything loose, wind noise etc.

Any thoughts?

Thanks

John A.
June 23, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: if when on the throttle, it could be a faulty diff bearing. Most likely not the pinion or gears. They would growl if worn. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Joey Comments: Comments: 2005 997 C2 50K miles. Hello I haven't used my car for about a month and this morning I turned my car on and I hear a slight knocking sound coming from the engine. The check engine light and "visit workshop" message appeared. Any idea what the issue might be? Thank you!
June 16, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Start by checking the engine oil level. If OK, check engine oil pressure. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Joey Comments: Hello I haven't used my car for about a month and this morning I turned my car on and I hear a slight knocking sound coming from the engine. The check engine light and "visit workshop" message appeared. Any idea what the issue might be? Thank you!
June 16, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would check the engine oil level to start. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
PG Comments: I just bought a 2006 911 Carrera, I noticed the red low pressure warning light is coming on at low idle....specifically when I am stopping. I just had it fully serviced two weeks ago, is this common? Thank you
June 3, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: No. I would check the oil level and oil pressure. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Ed Comments: Thinking of buying a 2007 Carrera S Cab with 30k from a Porsche dealer. Asking $47k. Is a PPI in order? Someone other than the dealer staff needs to do it, no? What is your thoughts on likely problems with what appears to be a clean low mileage car?
May 22, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would have one done. 47,000 could have been and easy or hard bunch of miles. I would find a local Porsche shop to do the PPI. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Len Comments: I've owned a 2000 Boxster S 3.2L since 2009 - awesome car. The car had 54,000 miles when I bought it. I've changed the oil regularly with Mobil 1 only. Last fall at about 93,000 miles, I saw a drop in coolant level and within a day realized the coolant was mixing into the engine oil - eventually a good gallon or more was in the oil refilled the reservoir and it's level dropped quickly while driving. I immediately took the car off the road within a day or two. My mechanic has since pulled the engine and the heads - our hope was to find a blown head gasket. No luck - both looked fine, as does every other visible internal parts of the engine. He did, however, encounter 2 adjacent head bolts that snapped. My dilemma now is do I take the next step of having the heads checked for cracks none are visible to us - or do I have to assume there is some failure in the block due to snapped bolts? Buying a replacement engine was the last-resort option I hoped I didn't have to face - but it's looking more likely. And do I buy a used one I've seen them @ $5K but with 74k miles, or do I buy a rebuilt one at $10K+ with $4k core charge which I may not get with the snapped bolts, engine apart, etc. - looks more like $15k+. I feel like getting the heads checked but fear that may be just throwing more money away if failure isn't likely. In all other respects the car is in excellent condition. Any advice is much appreciated!
May 5, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would send the heads to an expert. This is not worth making a costly mistake on. The cracks can happen in tight spaces, at the ends of the coolant passages. Look into a local Porsche expert or Porsche engine builder. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Ruben Comments: I have a 1999 Porsche 911, i am having problem with starting the car, i try checking the battery the fuel line and everything is okay, sometimes it will start but up after a few miles the engine will shut off and i have to wait from 1/2 an hour or cool down the engine and then it will start again. What do you think is the problem.
April 26, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I can't help without knowing what is missing from the system when you are trying to start it. When your engine doesn’t start you’ll want to check the basics. Check spark, fuel injector pulse and fuel pressure, volume, quality and engine compression. Are there any fault codes? Once you figure out what is missing, it will be easier to diagnose.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
mick butcher Comments: I have a misfire but only around 2500 rpm under and over are absolutely fine. when cruising around 2500 rpm the car surges quite severely. replaced coil distributor cap DME relay
April 24, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: To isolate the misfire, I would check spark, fuel and compression on all cylinders. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
RB Comments: was driving my 1999 911 reach about 130mph , heard a misfire & a decrease in speed was in 6 gear....now 6 gear feels different,
April 12, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Something may have failed. Did you check for fault codes? - Nick at Pelican Parts  
nick porsche Comments: Porsche 996 tiptronic S. 1998 build,Uk steering. Oil levels fine.115k miles on the milometer. Car went into 'check engine light' on a motorway drive. There was a change in the engine sound. Pulled over as I was loosing acceleration. Started the car again, she shuddered and had a tractor like noise. Does anyone have any knowledge much of such problem - advice much appreciated
March 31, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: What fault code is stored? - Nick at Pelican Parts  
craneboy Comments: I have taken my car to Advanced, they scanned it, and "no codes found" came up. So it looks like everything is fine with the car. I guess i need to get the computer cleared and/or reset. The 'airbag failure' light was my fault. Took the front seats out and turned the ignition on to raise the top. Found out later that is a nono. I had not intended to go quite this far in repairing this car, but since i've gone as far as i have, i may as well go all the way from fresh paint to fresh carpet. Maybe with the carpet out i will be able to find where the water intrusion is. I took care not to get the engine wet. I guess there is a breach in the front somewhere allowing water in. Drains are clear. Could be ac drain. I also heard that some porsches are notorious for rusting out behind the windshield? Haven't got to that part yet. PP page on carpet removal has been very helpful. Thanks again Nick and all at PP.
March 23, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: They likely used a generic OBD II scan tool. It can't read any system other than the generic side of the DME. Fault codes are stored in the airbag controller. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
brian Comments: Recently my 2001 C2 has had a loss of power in first gear just above 4k Rpm. I am getting P1128 and P1130 errors. It seems to have started when I over revved the engine. I had been getting those errors months ago but cleaned the MAF sensor in November and its run like a top since. I also had the oil changed about a month a go. It looses powwer dramatically at 4k RPM, not like when I had these errors in the past, and only in 1st gear. Any help is appreciated. I seem to gather it may be an O2 sensor in addition to the Mass Airflow, but I am new to all of this. less than a year Thank you! I have found Pelican Parts site and people to be a huge help.
March 17, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: You have fuel trim faults, if skewed the direction of how it is skewed will show if it is a vacuum leak of a maf sensor. I would lean toward a faulty sensor with the low power issue. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
craneboy Comments: the bad idle has happened before after i washed the car but cleared up after a short run. The 'drive to shop' light has come on ABS failure light has come on check engine light on and some others. I have searched the net for info on how to get to the ECU to remove it and dry it out but haven't found too much. Did see 1 video of removing the ecu from 09 cab turbo....i am guessing my ecu is located in the same area. Behind back seat? Thanks for the help!
March 13, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The DME or engine control module, is located behind the rear seat, under a carpet panel. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
craneboy Comments: Im preparing my 02 carrera 911 for painting. After i washed/rinsed the car and started it the abs failure light came on the visit shop light came on. Is there a certain area to avoid getting wet. I had taken the rear spoiler off and had a bag over the air intake and cardboard tucked over entire engine. Runs idles horrible. What is getting wet that shouldn't be?
March 12, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Do not get the engine wet. Other than that the chassis is fine. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
DMitra Comments: Hello,
Today I had an issue with my 1999 Porsche Carrera. I stopped at a store for 20 minutes and when I got back in my car to start, the engine cranked and cut off. I tried it for the the second time and same thing happened. I waited for 5 minutes and it strarted right up without hesitation. I drove home for about half hour, turned my car off and turned back on again without any problem. What should I be concerned of and what should I have checked on my car to see why this happened? Thanks!
March 8, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: It's hard to diagnose a starting issue if it begins to start normally again. You have to wait until it acts up again, unfortunately.
When your engine doesn’t start you’ll want to check the basics. Check spark, fuel injector pulse and fuel pressure, volume, quality and engine compression. Are there any fault codes? Once you figure out what is missing, it will be easier to diagnose. - Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Mark Comments: Hi my 2002 996 has started blowing white smoke and water from right hand side tail pipe. My mechanic thinks there's a crack in the block although after a compression test everything seems good . I have found a good replacement engine with low mileage. The question I have is on changing the engine is there going to be a problem on starting with my wiring loom on a different engine or will all be ok and just start ?
March 3, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: If you use the same engine and from the correct vehicle, it should swap right in. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Riggs Comments: I have done a PPI on a 2003 996 Turbo and it came back with the following comments amongst other small things:
- right condenser leak
- seepage from engine – head & cam gaskets
- front diff seals leak

Are these something I should worry about? Or are these expected on a car this age?
February 26, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The oil leaks are fairly common. Just have the items fixed as son as possible. You don't want to drive with an oil leak, the level could drop and cause engine wear.- Nick at Pelican Parts  
kris Comments: Hi, i have a 2003 996 3.6 c2, 52,000 miles, i have put 18,000 miles on here in the last year +, with 5000 mile oil changes and a very close filter inspection each time. last night after pulling in the garage, i can hear a knocking sound, it may be coming from the front of the engine, it is not a lifter / valve tick, i am thinking IMS or trans ??? thoughts?
February 16, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: hard to say without hearing it. I would suggest trying to pinpoint the sound. Take note of when it occurs and if it is related to RPM. This can help to narrow down the source. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
gkgk Comments: I have a Porsche Boxster S 2010 3.4-2 low millage 28k, runs beautifully, great millage 9.8 L/100km fantastic performance the one thing that I'm not happy about is the black oil every oil, filter change at 3000k. I use Mobile 1 0w-40w The Porsche dealer has no issues with my black oil. I would like to see clean oil. Can you please advise
February 11, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: You can try using Castrol, it seems to maintain it's look. However, when oil is used, it takes in contaminants and wears, inherently turning black. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Blinded by a 911 Comments: Hey Guys,
I thinking about buying a 2006, 911 base Carrera Cabriolet with only 25k on it, however after reading all this info I am a little hesitant. The car is at CarMax and is super clean, looks like knew inside and normal ware outside, for a 10yr old car. Engine compartment looks like everything is new too. One thing I noticed is that when it is first started cold, it really jumps/bounces side to side; it makes a brump, brump, brump, brump, and rocks the entire car; this lasts for several seconds and then the idle stabilizes. Is that normal?
The test drive was a blast, this car is awesome, however I felt that the brakes weren’t as good as my X5’s brakes, it seemed like I had to push hard on them to get the car to stop.
They are asking $40 grand for this 911, any advice would be appreciated…
Thanks
February 8, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The rough running could be the sign of a timing issue beginning. I would have a pre-purchase inspection performed by a Porsche repair shop. That way you know what the vehicle needs right away. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Adam Comments: Hi,

I have a 2002 966 Carrera cabriolet. It has a fault with the engine however.

Oil is entering the water coolant and there is huge pressure build up in the coolant expansion tank.

Any ideas?
February 6, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would pressure test the cooling system. If the system will not hold pressure and there are no external leaks the head gasket or oil cooler may be faulty. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
ron Comments: have Carrera 996 on first start car runs fine. after it warms up it just cuts off. then will not start. then about 2 hrs later it will start up run fine..i changed fuel pump. checked relay. no smoking at tail pipe doesn't run hot
February 1, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I can't help without knowing what is missing from the system when you are trying to start it. When your engine doesn’t start you’ll want to check the basics. Check spark, fuel injector pulse and fuel pressure, volume, quality and engine compression. Are there any fault codes? Once you figure out what is missing, it will be easier to diagnose. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Rsmith997 Comments: I have an 06 3.6 911 with 57,000 miles. I've noticed some smoke upon start up on a few occasions. For instance, the car sat for a month and smoked for a bit when initially started. Is this something to be concerned with? I have had no problems with the car at all. Thanks - Ryan
February 1, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: if the fluid levels are fine, what you are seeing is likely normal. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
blaze-n-james Comments: Finally found a reasonably price GetRag Awd 6 Speed gearbox...for 1999 996 C4! I've had flywheel resurfaced,replacing pilot bearing, replacing IMScan I do without removing motor?. I'd say, yes? Yet would like to know about any Tricks of The Trade... New Clutch pressure plate, disk and throwout bearing!. What other items should I address while gearbox is out? Thank you and RID€ON! blaze-n-james
January 31, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Yes you can do it without removing the motor. Maybe the oil heat exchanger. They tend to leak.- Nick at Pelican Parts  
Mark Comments: Hi looking at purchasing my first 996 Carrera 4 2002 TT
When the engine is cold as you move the gear lever from park to drive you can feel like a grind or vibration through the gear lever, does not do this when the engine is warm, could this be a gear box mount needs replacing or worse a gear box failure imminent ?
Thanks any help much appreciated
January 25, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would try replacing the fluid first. If the problem doesn't go away, the issue might be internal and need repair. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Woody Comments: I am looking for a 911 Porsche.

I have read that the cylinder cracking problem was remedied with a new casting in the late 3.4 liter engines. Do you know that to be correct, and if so is there a way of determining when that remedy was accomplished?

Also, are the 2002 to 2005 engines reliable if the ims bearing is replaced with the LN solution?
January 20, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I don;t have info to support the head crack update.

yes, if the LN solution installed, or any IMS upgrade, it is a good engine. - Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Jerry Comments: Please give me your best estimate for an IMS LN replacement for my 1999 C4
January 18, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Give our parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. They can figure out what part or repair kit you need.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Khaled Comments: Are the 2009 and up 911 engines any more reliable ? How about 2008 turbo engines?
January 8, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Turbo engine are always very reliable. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Gar-dog Comments: 2002 C2. 48K miles. Car has been very well cared for and maintained. The car has been rock sold and a pure joy to own.

It's been cold here in SoCal recently in the low 40's. At ignition my car makes a screaming/gnarling sound. It doesn't occur when weather is warmer. I have my suspicions as to what it is, but would like your opinion.
January 5, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Sounds like the starter is failing or you have a loose drive belt. Check the belts first. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Andy Comments: Hi I am in the process of buying a 2005 porsche911s..but I hear this knocking noise or some may call it ticking can u old tell me what it is
December 29, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Low engine oil. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Phil Comments: I have a cel on after changing out an oil seperator line. Once the car is warm its seems to only be exhausting the the left exhaust. I am thinking its a catalyct convertor. The car vibrates quite bad under 2800rpm once at operating temp. What concerns me is that I am also getting a cylinder 6 misfire and there seems to be a loss of compression on the cylinder as well after completing a dry/wet compression test. It looks as the the coils are find, but the couple of times that the car has been in the rain for too long it seems to idle/run rough. Any thoughts on this, because the bills on this car are really starting to add up and is starting to make this car an unejoyable experience. Thanks in advance for any advise!

Phil
December 8, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: If compression is low, perform a leak down test. This will pinpoint the area of the loss. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
LeeBB Comments: I wanted to let you know that the trouble with my 06 911 and the coolant loss problem was related to coolant hoses near the tranny. The clamps were not secure and one was missing where rubber meets metal. Funny though, the one that was loose was leaking and the one that was missing was not. All good now, thanks for advice!
December 7, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Thanks for the follow up. We appreciate it.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Jmac Comments: I have a 02 C with 75,000m. While starting the CEL, the high temp light, low fuel light came on and driving the tachometer stayed at zero. The car drives fine. My indie mechanic checked for fault codes and no codes came up. Has anyone else run into this issue and what was the solution?
December 1, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Sounds like a data bus issue. Check for fault codes in all systems. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
LeeBB Comments: I have purchased my wife's dream car a 2006 911 C2 with ~47k miles. I have noticed a slight coolant loss over the 400 newly driven miles or so, and have noticed the "mayonnaise" on the oil filler cap. I have also noticed the "pancake syrup" smell while driving, but only occasionally and does not seem to originate from the heating system, but not 100% sure. Obviously I intend to take to a Porsche mechanic 40 miles from home, but trying to brace for what may be coming. Any chance that this is anything on the minor relatively speaking side?
November 23, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Finhers crossed. It could be a small coolant leak, maybe water pump etc. The oil filler cap can be condensation in the engine, which would be normal. Worse case would be a faulty head gasket. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
napr Comments: Hi guys,
996 C2 from ’98, rides on weekends, seats during week days.
Three years ago 12k miles, it had the IMSB swapped for an LN retrofit, new RMS and clutch kit.
One year ago the water pump broke and was replaced at the OPC.
6 months ago my indy changed the oil and it was good. The anti-freeze needed a slight topping up.

Two weeks ago I spotted oil sweating slightly in the area where the gearbox meets the engine.
Cleaned the area and waited to see what would happen. The slight oil sweat reappeared.
The sweating occurs with driving. If the car seats for a week, nothing happens.
Also, there’s an engine clacking sound, only on morning coldstarts. It goes away in 2 seconds.

My indy told me to just let it be for now - both the oil sweat and the clacking sound.

Since it’s an M96 engine, every leak or sound makes me nervous. However the cost of tearing engine and gearbox apart is scary.
What do you reckon?

Thank you for your help,
NR
November 20, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would have the RMS and IMS inspected. You don't want to wait until something goes wrong. They would be the most common causes of oil in that area. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Rob Comments: I have a 2002 996 carrera 4s when I start it up it sounds like the exhaust is blowing badly but after a while it goes back to normal . Could you give me an idea on the problem and how to resolve it please
November 20, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: What do you mean by blowing badly? I don;t understand the description. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
jlovett Comments: I have a 1985 3.2 carerra which was running great, but I started getting some violent power drops outs when accelerating. At first I thought I had water in the gas cause the tank had been low for a while. I added some HEET treatment and filled the tank and it seemed ok, but 25 miles later, started again. I noticed when it happens the tach and gauges act funny, so I am wondering now if it is electrical. Any ideas ?
November 15, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: HEET will not remove the water. You will have to remove the fuel tank and have it cleaned. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
I want a 911 but? Comments: Well I am getting really discouraged. I have always wanted a 911 and am finally in a position to afford a decent used one. I looked at the 996 models but find the 997 models better looking inside and out, but all the stuff I am reading about engine issues in both 996 and 997 model years is just a complete turn off. I don't want to have to cut oil filters apart every 3 to 5 thousand miles. Is that really what it takes to own a 911? Changing to a spin on oil filter and magnetic plug is one thing, but I don't want to spend over $30K on a used 997 and then in a year or two have to spend another $20K plus for a new motor. Is it really that bad? Thanks much.
November 12, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Worst case scenario, it can be. It all depends on the vehicle you buy. Just pick a clean one, then have a pre-purchase inspection performed by a Porsche work shop. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Blake Comments: Looking at buying a 2005 911 Carrera 3.6l. It has 26,000 miles. It is not CPO'd as its at a BMW dealership. Is there any way to buy this car AND have peace of mind with the IMS issue? Is there a way to check for any signs?
October 31, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: You can have an oil sample tested. Is steel is found in the oi., it maybe on the way out. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
riggzee Comments: @ Nick
Is this pressure drop typical under No Load? Currently running 0-40 Mobile 1 Full Synthetic. Would changing to say 5-40,5-50 keep the pressure better? Used 10-40 High mileage in my Boxster S ran great
October 15, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Pressure should rise with RPM, some modern engine use pressure control solenoids to help with engine efficiency. Thicker oil will not fix a pressure loss problem. If you have one. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Riggzee Comments: I have a 2005 997 Carrera S 75k runs great, no, leaks, good oil pressure...
However, if I rev it to 4000+ rpm's in neutral no load and hold it, it has a bit of a knocking type sound.
October 9, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would advise against doing that. If you have knocking sound, oil pressure could be dropping. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Mr Bean Comments: Hi Guys. Nick and Casey, you guys are doing an awesome job in providing tech advise to us all out there. My 911, 996, 1999 is having issues starting up after stopping briefly when the car has been running for a while. Example - 2 hour run then stop for an hour and I need to try more than 5 times to get her going again, but after that no issues with normal driving until I stop again. If the engine is cold no issue on start up. Could this be a fuel pump issue? I did notice a humming noise coming from front drivers side wheel arch. No engine faults luminatmed on dash so probably indicates no input fault, rather an output fault? Thoughts. Cheers.
October 9, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Hard to say. usually a hot restart would lead me to believe something electrical, like crank sensor. The fuel pump would give you trouble before you shut down. When your engine doesn’t start you’ll want to check the basics. Check spark, fuel injector pulse and fuel pressure, volume, quality and engine compression. Are there any fault codes? Once you figure out what is missing, it will be easier to diagnose.

- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Tallyhoho Comments: I have A 1978 Porsche 911SC. It runs well at 70 mph but when I slow down to 15 or 10 mph I get rumbling sound and vibrations coming from the steering wheel. It doesn't affect the steering direction.The mechanic changed the steering column bearing and replaced outer tie rod ends several years ago, but the problem has returned. Any suggestions.Thanks
September 9, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Could be a wheel bearing. I would jack the front end and check the wheel bearings, working your way toward the steering wheel. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
tomcat200 Comments: Just fitted newexchange block to my 996 carrera4 3.4L on filling it with coolant found the sump filled up!!! the engine has never been run yet & all new OME gaskets where obtained & fitted i am a mechanic & self employed i rebuilt the engine very carefully any help would be welcome.
September 5, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would check the out pump gaskets and coolant flanges. If ok, a pressure test will find the leak. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Spiderman Comments: 996 2003 loads of miles..no major problems so far..normally car will start without pushing the gas,but today it took several times to reach ignition, with the pedal at its lowest. Car was like gasping and when finally started with a tremble, after numerous attempts..idle was perfect. Stopped the car,tried again few times, still gasping before short tremble then good full throttle. After few revvs,tried starting again. This time had the pedal on the floor,then turn key,then engine roared. Same thing after restart. The drive was normal n smooth. So is this the spark plugs, air filter?
September 3, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Good be a fuel delivery issue. When your engine doesn’t start you’ll want to check the basics. Check spark, fuel injector pulse and fuel pressure, volume, quality and engine compression. Are there any fault codes? Once you figure out what is missing, it will be easier to diagnose.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
blaze50 Comments: 2008 Porsche 911 C2 with about 31k miles. Idles fine on start up, but once choke goes off, car will idle ruff and will stall sometimes. Once oil temp gets to 175 or so, the car runs and idles fine. Check engine lite is on. Computer shows misfire of 3 and 6 cylinder.

Any ideas on what the issue could be?
August 20, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Likely what the codes say, a misfire.

I would check spark, fuel and compression on all cylinders. - Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Nader Comments: I have a 2008 911 Carrera S 997 3.8 . I started seeing left tail pipe smoke and black residue on the pipe, and once I was driving at a high speed I started hearing a knocking or ticking noise. I took it to Porsche and they wanted to put a new engine, and on the way there I got a warning of low oil level then the warning was gone. I asked for an explanation on what could have caused this and they wouldn't tell me and said that the engine just died. Is this is a common failure? What could have caused this and do I really need to get a whole new engine?
August 19, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Can't define a common failure without knowing what failed.

If oil pressure is low, there are likely worn bearings or bearing surfaces. If you don't like the new engine option, check with another shop for a second opinion. - Nick at Pelican Parts
 
ChillyD Comments: I have a 1999 911 cab with the 6 speed manual transmission. Are there reccommended shift points? If so, what are the general benifits?
August 18, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: That info should be in your owner's manual. If you don't have one, they are available on the Porsche website. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
996Rich Comments: Hi, I have a 99 C2. The CEL came on yesterday and I scanned it. It's P1531. The car does not idle rough or any other symptoms of the usual P1531 code. I cleared the code and took it for a short drive. The CEL has not come back on and runs fine. Any ideas? Wiring,etc?
August 11, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Could be a failing actuator. I would wait untilt he fault returns, then check the cam sensor signal and camshaft angle . variable timing. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Cshaf Comments: I have a 2005 997 C2 tiptronic with 75k miles daily driver car. Over the past week it has been having trouble out of a stop when it transitions from first gear. Feels like the gas peddle isn't engaging, until I fully release it and press it down again...then it will fully accelerate without a problem.
July 29, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: is there a raise in RPM without acceleration or does engine hesitate? - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Sean Comments: Hi, I have a 2005 997 Carrera S with 48k mileage. Yesterday I changed to a custom exhaust and pushed the car to test the sound. While driving back the engine oil light was on and the car was juddering while accelerating. When I turn back to the workshop and they lifted my car up, the engine oil was leaking out pretty heavily. I would like to know what's the issue and does it cost much to repair. Thanks
July 27, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: looks like an engine seal failed. Follow the leak up until you find the source of the leak. Not sure of cost, once you determine source, call around for a few estimates on repairing it.- Nick at Pelican Parts  
Nick Comments: Hi
I currently own a Porsche 911 c2s cabriolet 20006. the car is very low mileage at 25000 miles.
the water pump has been replaced due to brakig down but the teprature was not particularly high on the temprature guage when breaking down.
since the water pump has been replaced I am getting back pressure in the expansion tank and at high speed am loosing a lot of water. I have been told that I have a possible cracked head or block or liner which will cost 5000 to find out as this cannot be discovered until the engine has been striped down.
I have gone to a separate mechanic who said it was just air locks in the system and this has not worked and just cost me more.
can you advise if its just the water pump or how I can find out what is wrong without spending 5k.
July 24, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would pressure test the cooling system. If the system will not hold pressure and there are no external leaks the head gasket may be faulty. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Nine11 Comments: Hi, my car is 2005 997 S. identified the oil leak is from the actuator. Quite clearly oil in the electrical connector.
Thanks for the feedback.
July 2, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Sounds like you will need a new actuator. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Nath Comments: Hi people
I've just purchased a lovely 911 996 porch 2001 67 mileage
It has been driving lovely except for yesterday keeps cutting out when I stop and doesn't idle very well .
Anyone got any ideas ?
June 28, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Is the check engine light on? Sounds like an engine misfire. I would check spark, fuel and compression on all cylinders.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
bobby Comments: rebuilt engine carefully broke off intake valve head, fires but runs too lean to continue at idle.
June 26, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Please expand on the broken valve, current problem and previous repairs. Need more info. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Nine11 Comments: Hi guys, I have an oil leak from the left variocam actuator. The one between spark plugs . Unclear at the moment if it's the actuator itself or a seal ring that's causing the problem? Is it an easy job to remove / replace the actuator or does the engine have to come out ? Any special timing or setup prerequisites before removing it ? Thanks
June 22, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: What year and model 911 do you have?? - Casey at Pelican Parts  
Allan Comments: Same as Larry, I just purchased an 05 997 with 40,000 miles and my oil pressure gauge goes pretty much right to almost 5 as soon as I start to drive, so probably at 5 when I'm still in the 3-4000 rpm range.
June 21, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: 5 bar is normal, should be 5 at 5000 RPM. You may have a normal condition. Only way to know it to check engine oil pressure and level. Use an oil pressure gauge to monitor pressure.- Nick at Pelican Parts  
larry Comments: I have just purchased a 2004 911 Carrera C2 996 76,000 miles. Oil change was just done. The Check oil limit light is on. What is that? and what does that mean. HELP! Also, When I am over 3000 RPM's or so the oil pressure is 5. Is that where it's supposed to be?
June 18, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Please send a photo of your warning. The limit portion is throwing me off. 5 bar when warm at that RPM is good. If it is check engine oil level, add 1 quart of the engine oil. - Casey at Pelican Parts  
Huw Comments: 2003 996 C4S. Engine warning light comes on. Fault code reads that it is a knock sensor error. I replaced the sensor and cleared the code. After 50 miles or so I am getting the same fault and light. Any ideas what I should look for next. Otherwise car seems to run fine. Thanks
June 13, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Are you getting any irregular noises? Was the fault above or below limit? Open circuit or implausible? - Casey at Pelican Parts  
Roger Comments: Hi guys. I bought a 2006 997 Carrera S with 49,000 miles
on it in Oct. 2013. I've had no problems. The car will
wail at 7,000rpm, or troll around town in 6th gear... no CEL's, no smoking, no knocks, tapping, no complaints. All
instrumentation is solid. James May said that the 2006 911
was "as reliable as a wood burning stove" and that has been
my experience thus far. Yet recently I'm finding all these
horror stories about M96 and M97 engines. If you had this specimen of 911, what would you do... knowing what you know and all the above characteristics? thanks, Roger
June 3, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: 1. Change the engine oil and filter every 3k to 5k miles or once per year, even though you are running synthetic lubricants.

2. Utilize boutique type synthetic engine lubricants that have elevated levels of ZDDP (Zinc Dialkyldithiophosphate) additives with a minimum of 1250 PPM.

3. Cut the engine oil filter open and inspect it for any metal, plastic (brown) and or rubber (black) debris at every engine oil change.

4. If higher quantities of metal debris are found in the oil filter, consult a Porsche Technician, then send a 3 to 4 ounce sample of the used engine oil to a lab for analysis.

5. If purchasing a pre-owned Porsche with the M96 or M97 engine, insist on a thorough PPI (Pre-Purchase Inspection) and make sure to review the written service records of the car. Be certain that the service intervals were reasonable. It’s a good idea to inspect the engine oil filter (as noted above) and camshaft deviation values during the PPI.

6. When the engine is at full operating temperature, drive with the RPM’s elevated, if possible accelerate to or near engine redline once or more times per driving cycle under full throttle. Only upshift when above 3,000 RPM.

7. Install LN Engineering’s magnetic engine drain plug and spin on oil filter which has improved filtration capability.

Most importantly ENJOY your car as often as you can.

- Casey at Pelican Parts
 
Nine11 Comments: I just bought a 2005 997.1 S. The mileage is high but the car has full dealer service records and the engine has no abnormal noises but when driving off immediately after cold start under light acceleration there is a bad hesitation / flat spot. This only lasts during initial warm up between approx. 1800 - 2500 rpm. shortly after warm up all is well and no issues.No lumpy idle or misfiring and no CEL illuminated at any time and engine starts no problem. The issue will not occur again till another cold start. I.e. overnight parking. If I let the engine warm up for 10 minutes before driving I don't experience the problem.
May 27, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Sounds like a fuel pressure problem that is being compensated by the DME when warmed up. I would check faults, and check fuel trim values to see if the car is running rich or lean. - Casey at Pelican Parts  
LIL VEEK Comments: My 2003 996 C4S 65,000 Mi was just diagnosed as having a "Rod Bearing Failure", with brass filings in the oil, confirmed after "tear-down"! What actually causes this?
May 21, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Typically metal in the oil causes these failures if no signs of oil starvation are present. Upgrade your filter system, to LN Engineering spin on oil filter retrofit, install oil filter magnet, and magnetic drain plug. Change oil every 5K miles or annually, keep your RPM up while driving (2500+)and you must cut open the engine oil filter at every oil change to look for metal particles. - Casey at Pelican Parts  
whm Comments: I made a mistake and after reading my owners manual the oil pressure should be 3.5 bar at 5000 rpm not 3000. At 5000 rpm I always have the needle pegged out at 5bar. I think I'll try a new pressure sensor?
May 20, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would confirm what the actual pressure is as well. You have likely found a non-issue if it reads OK with a mechanical gauge and can replace the sender. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
whm Comments: I have a 2006 c2 that has fresh oil change with filter, Mobil 1 0/40# and I get 5 bar oil pressure after warm up still get 5 bar at 4000 rpm and at idle get 2+bar. I I think it is supposed to be 3.5 bar at 3000 rpm. Where should I look to correct the problem? gauge or sensor or both?
May 16, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: 3.5 bar at 3000 RPM seems low to me. I am not aware of a spec for oil pressure at 3000 RPM. If it was low I'd recommend checking the oil pressure relief valve but your values seem to be about normal. - Casey at Pelican Parts  
Rod Comments: I'm wanting to purchase a 2004 Porsche 911 Turbo - 660HP EVOMS GT660. Is the 3.6L engine going to be reliable? Will the transmission and rear end hold up to all this hp? Thanks, Rod
May 8, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I am wondering if there are strengthening mods in the gearbox at that horsepower. I was told that the stock box could do 600..That HP is kind of right at the limit of what I would say is reliable. Keeping up on the oil changes after each track day and looking for metal debris in the gearbox and front diff oil will help you see the problem coming before it becomes an issue. The shop I worked at upgraded a 996 to 600 HP and that car still drives around today with the stock gearbox, but was responsibly driven and enjoyed. - Casey at Pelican Parts  
Porsche engine builder Comments:
May 6, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: - Casey at Pelican Parts  
Faz Comments: 911 carrera 996
Engine fault light on
Juddering on acceleration
March 19, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Sounds like an engine misfire. I would check spark, fuel and compression on all cylinders.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Zen 911 Comments: I have a 2005 911 Carrera 997 3.6 . I started seeing left tail pipe smoke and black residue on the pipe plus hearing a knocking or ticking noise but car full of oil. I only have the car for a year it was my dream car and a birthday gift to myself. The car drives strong just in shifting gears you see smoke come out of left tail pipe. I took it to Porsche and they wanted to put a new engine in 30k expected I then took it to another mechanic and he attached a reader and discovered cylinder 3456 was bad and he didn't detect any metal in the oil so he recommended changing the Pistons. 7k : He stated its not a bottom end issue. So I was waiting for taxes to attempt the repair..then one day after adding oil to the car I took it for a spin and started to see the engine light start blinking and right a few miles it started losing power. I pulled over and googled the warning light and it instructed me to get it home immediately. Then driving home it started smoking really bad. Now when I start it up the engine light flashes and its smoking very bad . Just need some direction , I see the piece about the oil separator . Love the car . The I found another mechanic in NJ said he would do a top engine rebuild for 6k I was supposed to me this guy at the Maryland house and he stood me up and I had it towed there then had to return home with vehicle in tow .. : ... a friend that's a fellow Porsche owner recommended this site for honest help! I live in Maryland near Washington DC
January 31, 2015
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: First I would figure out where the smoke is coming from. Is the coolant level ok? You mentioned the oil level is Ok. If you have smoke, one of your engine fluids is leaking into the cylinder. Start there, then follow up with me. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
s500 Comments: I'm interested in buying a 00-04 Porsche 996,I own a 1999 w140 and I'm looking for another car as an every day driver. What do you think about this car?
December 7, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would go with the later model, 2004 is you have the option. They will have lower miles and likely be in better shape. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
pieter1 Comments: Thanks Nick I will have the cylinders Nicom coated agian after boaring
November 20, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Let us know how it works out. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
pieter Comments: Can I use a 2,7L Boxster engine block and increase the bore to replace my 996 3,4L engine block. Cylinders are scored to bad for repair.
November 15, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I am not 100%, however I don't think so. I would check with a machine shop. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Mohd Comments: Bigger size crankshaft bearing
Porsche carrera s
November 1, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: Are you looking for parts?
Give our parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799 and they can help figure out which part or repair kit you need.
- Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Cheersy Comments: I have had a 911SC TARGA. for 5years.When I bought it had engine overhaul.Milage172000.Had no problems but recently sometimes on start up and sometimes when warm I get sounds like a top end rattling, but sound will then disappear and re-occur later .Could it be a timing chain tensioner ,if so would it not be continuously.
October 15, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: COuld be oil pressure. I would check engine oil level, then engine oil pressure. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
FL911 Comments: So, with camshaft locking tools used and the crankshaft locking in place you think it could still be a timing issue?
The car runs perfect, never runs rough at all even at temperature. I drove it for over 45 minutes last Saturday and at highway speeds and it never missed a beat. Later that day went out for another drive and went 6 miles and it just died again.
I could see your point if it was running rough at start up or even after warm up but it isn't. I replaced the Camshaft Position Sensor but this did not help either. I will check the timing again.
Would a camshaft sensor cause it to abruptly die like this? I would think it would cause rough running but not dying all of the sudden.
Any other possibilities after I check the timing?
Thank you
October 7, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I am inclined to lean toward the issue being related to the work performed, that is if it wasn't present before. I find this to be the case A LOT of times.

In order to get direction toward other possible causes, When your engine doesn’t start you’ll want to check the basics. Check spark, fuel injector pulse and fuel pressure, volume and quality. Are there any fault codes? Once you figure out what is missing, it will be easier to diagnose. - Nick at Pelican Parts
 
FL911 Comments: Camshaft locking jigs were used as well as the crankshaft. If the timing jumps the engine would run bad even at start up. Timing could not be the issue. Scanned car yesterday and no codes show up.
Crankshaft sensor possibly?
September 26, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: TIming most certainly could be the issue. As it varies and when cold may be in an acceptable range, then war go out of range and cause rough running. If the problem was not present before your repair, I would start with what you repaired. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
FL911 Comments: I have just performed the RMS and IMS update on my 02 996 c2, and after getting it all reassembled and ready to go, I started it and it ran fine. Took it for a short test ride and I was just about home and at an intersection it started to run/idle rough and just died. Got it home and checked everything out. All Good. Started it back up went on the same test ride and it did the same thing when I stopped two more times!! It only does this when I am stopped. When driving it is fine but when I stop for about 10-30 seconds it dies.
No CEL lights are on and it will restart after it sits for a few minutes. I don't want to start buying parts that may not be the problem.
Your input is greatly appreciated!!
September 22, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would check if timing jumped during your repair. Lock the engine down with the camshaft timing jigs. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
Gallman Comments: Thanks Wayne for the super quick response. I am also going to be upgrading the water pump to one with a metal impeller and I am installing the 160degree thermostat from LN Engineering at the same time. So between the extra radiator and the thermostat you think that will be enough? I've seen articles on retrofitting or upgrading oil coolers on older, air cooled engines and I've been searching around and haven't really seen any useful articles on recommended external coolers and how to add it to a water cooled 997 m96/m97. Any pointers or ideas of how to go about doing that? Recommended vendors and previous installs would be great. Thanks again! I'm looking forward to installing the parts I've bought from Pelican Parts!
August 22, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: The third radiator and the thermostat will work perfectly fine for you. No need to mess with the oil cooler - it's not the problem. Porsche (due to restrictions on emissions) actually had to make the cars run hotter. So, tweaking them back to "normal" operating levels is a good thing. - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
Gallman Comments: Has anyone retrofitted an external oil cooler to a 2006 3.6l Carrera? I sometimes find myself stuck in stop and go traffic and it freaks me out seeing the oil temp gauge climb towards 250 when I know that the gauge is not truly accurate and the temp is really a bit higher. I am going to be retrofitting the 3rd radiator and wonder if that's gonna be enough to keep the engine cooler? Thanks in advance for your help and advice!
August 22, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: To start, I would use the low-temperature thermostat. That should solve your problem. Check out the info in my water pump replacement article: http://www.pelicanparts.com/techarticles/Porsche-996-997-Carrera/34-WATER-Water_Pump_and_Thermostat_Replacement/34-WATER-Water_Pump_and_Thermostat_Replacement.htm - Wayne at Pelican Parts  
John Comments: Thank you Nick, but would a bad actuator make the engine run "like hell"
And then run OK when the solenoid is disconnected? Thanks again for your advice.
August 16, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I do not use unplugging items as a test, so I have no base to comment on. However, if one actuator is jammed, and when the DME advanced or retards that one or the other, the engine would run poorly. Then when unplugged, one could be returning to rest position, allowing the engine to run better. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
John Comments: My 1999, 996 was running fine but CEL P1531 came on. Dealer's visual inspection found wires broken off variocam solenoid on drivers side.
Dealer reports solenoid replaced and codes erased. "ENGINE NOW RUNS LIKE HELL" and CEL back on. They disconnect solenoid and engine runs fine!!! They are stumped but suggest replacing the Engine Control Module. Help! Does this make sense???
August 15, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: If the solenoid has been replaced, it is likely the actuator. - Nick at Pelican Parts  
tsagaril Comments: Hi, My car has started over heating and the engine light has come on. I have cooled it down and flushed the system and let it run to 80 and have noticed that it is building a lot of pressure in the over flow tank and activating the bleed valve.
Could this be a faulty radiator cap or more likely a blown gasket?
Do you have a technical manual on replacing the head gasket?

How many hours would it be?

What would deb the best way to diagnose the issue?

Thanks, LT
May 11, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I would set a side a couple of days.
I would grab a repair manual. It will have the procedure, special tools and torque specs. This is not an easy process and many special tools are required.

Give our parts specialists a call at 1-888-280-7799. - Nick at Pelican Parts
 
Eddie Comments: Where can I find the Project 14 for full instructions on how to update your engine to fix the ISM bearing problem?
April 14, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: http://www.pelicanparts.com/techarticles/Porsche-996-997-Carrera/14-ENGINE-IMS_Bearing/14-ENGINE-IMS_Bearing.htm - Nick at Pelican Parts  

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