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Old 08-01-2011, 11:25 AM   #1
KGV
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Question Whiney engine

My friend is onsidering buying a 1998 Boxster. I went with him for a test drive and the engine whines very loudly. I know this is a high-performance car, but the soung is almost defeaning. Is this usual or could there be something wrong with this partiuclar car? And if so, what? Thanks
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Old 08-01-2011, 12:08 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KGV
My friend is onsidering buying a 1998 Boxster. I went with him for a test drive and the engine whines very loudly. I know this is a high-performance car, but the soung is almost defeaning. Is this usual or could there be something wrong with this partiuclar car? And if so, what? Thanks
KGV
i guess it depends on what you mean by whiney...

i wouldn't describe it as whiney but it doesn't sound like my ford or volvo, that's for sure.

best way to know is go test a couple of more. if they all sound "whiney" then you know it's just that you're not used to the sound.

the first time my friend rode in the car his first question was "why does it sound like that?" i had to explain he was used to hearing the engine noise coming from the front of the car and it was behind him.

an airplane engine when sitting in first class doesn't sound like an airplane engine when sitting in coach...
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Old 08-01-2011, 07:22 PM   #3
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There's nothing "almost deafening" about a stock Boxster. Have it checked out by a private mechanic prior to buying.
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Old 08-01-2011, 08:41 PM   #4
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They do sound a bit like a sewing machine until you put your foot into it...

Stock exhaust, of course.
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Old 08-02-2011, 10:20 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KGV
My friend is onsidering buying a 1998 Boxster. I went with him for a test drive and the engine whines very loudly. I know this is a high-performance car, but the soung is almost defeaning. Is this usual or could there be something wrong with this partiuclar car? And if so, what? Thanks
KGV

I think you are describing the serpentine belt, pulleys & rollers that are less than a foot behind the seats & make alot of noise. Acura NSX sounds louder & less manly as it's based off accord V-6.
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Old 08-02-2011, 12:59 PM   #6
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Two thoughts...

I second BYprodriver's assessment, but would add possible worn idler, ancillary bearings.

Also, car could be de-snorkled.

Cheers!
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Old 08-02-2011, 04:01 PM   #7
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I just replaced both idler pulleys and the tension pulley this afternoon. I had heard some whirring/whining that changed with the engine speed and I suspected at least one of these pulleys so I pulled the front engine cover and checked them with a mechanic's stethoscope. One idler pulley was definitely noisey and another was questionable. The tension pulley was probably OK but I decided to order all 3 from Pelican and followed the instructions in Wayne's book (also online, with corrected torque specs). It was pretty easy and now I am going on a test drive!
I had replaced the serp belt about 6k miles ago and I remember reading a few cases where people had pulleys fail a while after putting on a new belt. Not sure if it was related, but I am happy nothing failed on the road and left me stranded.
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Old 08-02-2011, 08:41 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MN 986
I just replaced both idler pulleys and the tension pulley this afternoon. I had heard some whirring/whining that changed with the engine speed and I suspected at least one of these pulleys so I pulled the front engine cover and checked them with a mechanic's stethoscope. One idler pulley was definitely noisey and another was questionable. The tension pulley was probably OK but I decided to order all 3 from Pelican and followed the instructions in Wayne's book (also online, with corrected torque specs). It was pretty easy and now I am going on a test drive!
I had replaced the serp belt about 6k miles ago and I remember reading a few cases where people had pulleys fail a while after putting on a new belt. Not sure if it was related, but I am happy nothing failed on the road and left me stranded.
Recommend using only the oem Continental belt. The Gates and Goodyear Gatorback belts are a tad too tight and this is what can cause the idlers to wear prematurely. It's been a while since I did the belt replacement on my former Boxster, but I'm not even sure the Continental belt from the dealer is any more expensive.

Cheers!
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Old 08-03-2011, 04:46 AM   #9
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Very normal if your not use to it, I wondered the samething when I bought mine!!! As mentioned earlier the motor is behind you and sounds very different then in front of you. I'm oftend told it sounds like VW when starting it up....but sounds nice when your on the gas.

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Old 08-03-2011, 05:21 AM   #10
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Originally Posted by Lil bastard
Recommend using only the oem Continental belt. The Gates and Goodyear Gatorback belts are a tad too tight and this is what can cause the idlers to wear prematurely. It's been a while since I did the belt replacement on my former Boxster, but I'm not even sure the Continental belt from the dealer is any more expensive.

Cheers!
Thanks LB, I had read that and I did use the OEM belt, but it is a good reminder to anyone else thinking of replacing their belt soon. It was definitely tighter than the old belt when I put it on (as expected) but maybe the pulley noise a few thousand miles later was just a coincidence.
Either way, I am glad it was easy to do and it sounds great again!

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