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Old 05-05-2005, 05:46 AM   #5
Registered User
Join Date: Jul 2004
Location: Houston, Texas
Posts: 7,243
jeph, I have suggested to the owners of this board that they should put an articles area of the site in plain view for all new folks to this board or new/potential Porsche owners.

I think it takes programming money and they just bought this board from the guy who created it... it's gaining financial momentum with banner ads (sponsors), but it's probably slow going.

Here's a list of things anyone should read up on and learn about before buying a used Boxster. The search engine is a good place to find threads relating to each topic:

Buying a used Boxster
- The truth about Carfax - it ain't no LexusNexus (and don't trust it for much of anything, although it does give some basic history on your car).
- Find a paint density meter (go to a body shop that owns one) and use it all over the car to see if it's been wrecked.
- Have a 3rd party inspect the car carefully - this includes CPO cars from dealers
- Find and call each dealership that's worked on the car for a history... they're not linked nationwide like most other car companies. (Use the carfax report to see where it's been titled and call the dealerships in those areas with the VIN number. Time consuming but revealing!)
- Rear speakers are a must and terribly expensive to buy later. Find one with rear speakers.
- The roll bar inserts and windstop are also very expensive after the fact, by the way ... but they make a huge difference and you should get them.
- Last word on buying a boxster: Buy an S (every owner here will tell you it's worth it), buy the newest one you can afford, and buy one with some factory warranty on it and take it in for every single thing you can find ... which means having the car checked out regularly by an independent mechanic.

Owning a Boxster
- The convertible top ("chopping" the window so it doesn't crack, etc.)
- The dreaded Check Engine light (when it stays on-not blinking-you probably have a cap loose somewhere (oil, radiator, gas) or a O2 sensor or MAF is out and that will cost you some $$. When it blinks you are screwed.)
- Tires can't be rotated and wear quickly—15k is about all you'll get out of them.
- Wheel balancing is hard to achieve. Road force balancing with a Hunter 9700 is recommended.
- Cleaning your car is a big debate, but worth reading about (Using clay, pre-wax stuff like klasse, waxes, etc.)
- Roll bar inserts and windscreen "walk off" when you park your Boxster with the top down in busy parking lots... pop them off and stow them in the trunk or you'll see them for sale on Ebay next week.
- Hang around the service area of your local Porsche dealership at closing time and ask the technicians if they know anyone at the shop who moonlights from their own garage. I did this and now I save some big money on repairs and upgrades. (Risk is high though—thought I'd add this)

Modifiying/Tuning a Boxster
- Exhaust systems will make the car louder and increase HP a bit. Big money.
- Intake systems are not worth it, save your big money.
- "Desnorkeling" means removing the snorkel like plastic tube leading to your air filter that makes the Boxster a little louder and doesn't seem to hurt anything unless you go through car washes (shame on you) or shoot the hose at full blast into your intake grill.
- Chip mods are not worthwhile on the Boxster.
- Mods in general are not worth the cash spent if you ask me personally... others will disagree, but the Boxster is not an S2000 and isn't nearly as "tweakable."

There's a bunch of other stuff I could share, but these are the basics. Hopefully, we'll have some lengthly additional posts on this thread with contributors who disagree with me on something written above, and that's great because you will learn more that way! I like it when people don't agree with me because I too learn something.

Randall Neighbour
Location: Houston, Texas

1997 Boxster - Triple Black (paid $15,500 in 2004 for it)

Work done to my (previously trashed) Boxster in one year:
- Transmission swapped out for a used one (engine replaced prior to buying the car)
- Driver's side control arm replaced. Passenger side rebuilt/repacked with grease.
- Added upgraded shift knob, rear speakers and 3 spoke wheel and airbag
- O2 sensor replacement
- Instrument cluster replaced (LED's were out on the speedo)
- New tires
- Brake pads all the way around (calipers were still good, fortunately)

I've put about 6k into this car so far—should have waited and bought a $21k Boxster that was a year or two newer or just held out to buy a 2000 S, which was my dream car. Oh well, this one is fast and fun and running well today.

Hope all this helps you!
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