Go Back   986 Forum - for Porsche Boxster & Cayman Owners > Porsche Boxster & Cayman Forums > Boxster General Discussions

Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 09-29-2005, 12:21 AM   #1
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 40
Unhappy Ignition problems!!

I can't start my 97 Boxster's engine every time. I can turn the key no problem and the engine crank every time but just couldn't start sometime. Sometime I have to try 3-4 times in order to get the engine start. I thought my engine was cold at the begining, but sometime it happens 30 minutes after I turn off the engine. Weather is still hot here in Los Angeles. Is my battery bad? The Battery warning light was not on. Is it the starter or ignition problem? It worries me, coz I just bought this Box for just a week.... Anyone has such problem before? Thanks.

97Boxsterian is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-29-2005, 05:36 AM   #2
pez
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Minneapolis
Posts: 26
Send a message via AIM to pez Send a message via Yahoo to pez
Does the key stick when you try to remove it?
If so it could be the start of the ignition switch going south.

When they act up you can get all kinds of flaky problems, everything from not being able to insert/remove the key, radio not working, blowermotor not working, key getting stuck in the start position ect.
Check out Renntech as itís a known problem and somewhat easy to fix, IF it is the switch.

Pez
pez is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-29-2005, 05:41 AM   #3
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota, USA
Posts: 3,308
Hi,

I think what you're really describing is Hard Starting, that is, the car starts, but only after several attemps am I right?

Hard starting can come from a variety of issues. There just isn't one simple answer here. Hard Starting can often be the result of a combination of issues.

Fuel/Air/Spark - these are the three basic requirements for an engine to run. Let's look at each:

Fuel

a.) Fuel Pump - do you hear it running with the Ignition ON, but before engaging the Starter? Does it sound slow, labored? The Fuel Pump is an electrical device which has fuses and relay(s). The Fuse is most likely good, as the car does eventually start, but the Relay may be sticking sometimes. No good way to easily test a relay, usually swapping it with one known to be good is the best test here.

b.) Fuel Filter - Is it the original? A partially clogged Fuel Filter can make starting the car more difficult as the Fuel Pump is operating just on Battery power until it starts and this can be insufficient for a Pump to work through a clogged or partially clogged Filter.

c.) Clogged or partially clogged injectors can make a car hard to start. There are a number of products out there designed to remove the varnish which your fuel deposits on the injectors. You add these to your Fuel Tank when you fill-up. Try this for a couple tankfuls.

Air

a.) Air Filter, check it to see that it is still servicable and not clogged. Here again, at starter cranking speeds, air is harder to pull through a clogged Air Filter. Remove it and hold it to the light. If visible dirt can be seen, replace it. If a K&N type Filter, replace it with a standard Filter - the K&Ns will clog in 1/3 the time of a standard Filter.

b.) Vacuum Leaks - check all vacuum hoses to make sure they're connected and in good shape. Loose or cracked vacuum hoses will reduce the engine's ability (in some cases) to draw air in, especially at Starter speeds.

c.) MAF Sensor This sensor regulates the amount of fuel injected into the engine by sensing the amount of Air being drawn in. Without an OBD Reader, it's difficult to test it's operation, but if everything else checks out, this could be the culprit. The use of K&N type filters have been known to give the MAF sensors a hard time as the oil in these Filters can contaminate the sensor. If you have one of these Filters, I'd replace it with a standard papper one.

Spark

a.) Battery - The most obvious thing. If it is weak, it is more difficult to start the car. Using a Multimeter, set to DC scale, test the Voltage by touching the Tester Leads to each terminal of the Battery (Car OFF). You want to see a minimum of 12 Volts, 12.5-13.0 Volts would be better. If in doubt, replace the Battery, it may be the Original one and is simply wearing out. Also, check for condition of Battery Cables. Make sure they are not worn, cracked or loose.

b.) Alternator - This is what keeps your Battery fully charged. Check the Accessory Belt (Polyrib Belt) to insure that it is tight enough. Also, with the car running and using the Multitester, check the Alternator's Output as described in my thread about Alternator Testing in the Technical Section here. Correct as necessary.

c.) Spark Plug cables - Inspect these to insure they are not loose or cracked. Replace or tighten as required.

d.) Spark Plugs - Check these to insure that they are in good order, not cracked or fouled. If in doubt, replace them. These are currently on sale at: http://shop.store.yahoo.com/eagleday/993bilovaco.html . Since your car is older, you don't know how long they've been in service, best to replace them and start from a fresh baseline.

If these things do not solve the problem, there are any number of other possible causes which would be impossible to list here.

But, since your car is older, it's probably time to start replacing some of the components I've listed above anyway (unless you have a full Service History indicating that some/all of these things have been addressed) and I suspect that this is most likely to solve your issues. If not, at least you will have eliminated them as possible causes. Hope this helps...

Happy Motoring!... Jim'99

Last edited by MNBoxster; 09-29-2005 at 05:44 AM.
MNBoxster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-29-2005, 10:38 AM   #4
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 40
Arrow

Thank you guys! Since the hard starting problem might be caused by different things like air filter, sparks, fuel and air...etc. I think it is time to service my Boxster coz it has 35k miles on it and the last owner didn't get 30k service. Hope the hard start problem will go away after I finish the 30k miles service. Agree?
97Boxsterian is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-29-2005, 11:27 AM   #5
Registered User
 
deliriousga's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: USA!!
Posts: 1,159
Definitely get the 30K service done. New plugs & filters can do wonders. Don't forget the cabin filter for the A/C system.

If any of the plug wires are cracked, they are sold separately because they have a coil on the head of each one. They are around $55 each online.

If you order the plugs listed above, be patient. I ordered some and it was two weeks before they were shipped. Great price, but not a good place to go if you're in a hurry.
__________________
1987 928S4 Silver Metallic (980)/Navy (TP) 5-Speed
2000 Boxster Speed Yellow/Black 5-Speed
1966 Wife White/Brown Top
1986 Daughter White/Brown Top (Sold!)
1992 Daughter White/Blonde Top
deliriousga is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-29-2005, 12:51 PM   #6
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 40
Arrow

My Boxster has RMS leaking too, I want to get it fix in dealer since warranty cover that. But I don't want to do the 30K service in dealer coz it costs $850. Do u think I should get the 30K service frist or fix the RMS leaking first? Is my ignition problem more important than RMS leaking problem? I can't do both at the same time coz I want to do it in different place. By the way, anyone know good mechanic in Los Angeles area who can do the 30K service cheap? Thanks.
97Boxsterian is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-29-2005, 05:29 PM   #7
Registered User
 
deliriousga's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: USA!!
Posts: 1,159
You can DIY the 30k service for about $150. It's just a plug, air filter, cabin filter & oil change and top lubrication. It took me about 2 hours to do it. The plugs are directly behind the rear wheels so they're easily accessed.

If you're going to pay a mechanic for something, make it the RMS.
__________________
1987 928S4 Silver Metallic (980)/Navy (TP) 5-Speed
2000 Boxster Speed Yellow/Black 5-Speed
1966 Wife White/Brown Top
1986 Daughter White/Brown Top (Sold!)
1992 Daughter White/Blonde Top
deliriousga is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-29-2005, 06:03 PM   #8
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota, USA
Posts: 3,308
Quote:
Originally Posted by deliriousga
You can DIY the 30k service for about $150. It's just a plug, air filter, cabin filter & oil change and top lubrication. It took me about 2 hours to do it. The plugs are directly behind the rear wheels so they're easily accessed.

If you're going to pay a mechanic for something, make it the RMS.
HI,

Sound advice...

Happy Motoring!...Jim'99
MNBoxster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-05-2005, 02:45 PM   #9
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 40
Thank you all!!! I finished the 30K service today, and the hard starting problem is gone.
97Boxsterian is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-05-2005, 04:26 PM   #10
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota, USA
Posts: 3,308
Quote:
Originally Posted by 97Boxsterian
Thank you all!!! I finished the 30K service today, and the hard starting problem is gone.
Hi,

That's Great! I'm sure that one or more of the replaced components was causing your Hard Starting. BTW, thanks for reporting back, many who seek advice don't, leaving us with no idea whether we were able to help or not.

Happy Motoring!...Jim'99

Last edited by MNBoxster; 10-05-2005 at 04:29 PM.
MNBoxster is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-05-2005, 10:56 PM   #11
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 40
I appreciate you guys help a lot!!! I mean it so I definately will keep you guys updated! I didn't DIY this time, coz I am afraid I screw it up. I paid $670 for 30K service, brake flush and fluid change to a local mechanic here. I am not a hand on person but I am interest to learn. You guys said it is easy to do DIY this service. I hope I can learn it and do it myself next time. What kind of tools we need for this kind of service? Where can I buy the spark plugs and all kind of filters and other supplies?
97Boxsterian is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-06-2005, 12:08 AM   #12
Registered User
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: auburn, al
Posts: 144
Wow $670 would definately have covered the cost of all required tools for this job. You would need to start w/ a basic metric socket set , metric allen wrenches, filter wrench, oil drain pan(at least 9quart), jack stands, and maybe a small hydrolic jack. Get the tools and start w/ small projects to build confidence and familiarity. There are plenty of online resources for projects and instruction. You'll get much satisfaction from doing these things yourself.
__________________
1999 Arctic Silver Metallic/Graphite Grey top/ tiptronic transmission
nautiquelfe is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-04-2005, 12:15 AM   #13
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 40
Unhappy

Quote:
Originally Posted by MNBoxster

c.) MAF Sensor This sensor regulates the amount of fuel injected into the engine by sensing the amount of Air being drawn in. Without an OBD Reader, it's difficult to test it's operation, but if everything else checks out, this could be the culprit. The use of K&N type filters have been known to give the MAF sensors a hard time as the oil in these Filters can contaminate the sensor. If you have one of these Filters, I'd replace it with a standard papper one.

After having great time with my 97 Boxster for about 1 month, the hard starting problem comes back I bought my baby to Porsche dealer yesterday and they call me today telling me the Mass Air Flow Sensor is bad. It will cost me $500 for part and $300 for labor. Do you think I can replace the sensor myself? Should I try replace the filter first and see if it fix the problem? Please help!
97Boxsterian is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-04-2005, 06:08 AM   #14
Registered User
 
Brucelee's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2004
Location: Des Moines, IA
Posts: 8,083
Thanks to all that provided advice here. Happy outcome and he saved money!

Nice job!

Brucelee is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-04-2005, 07:46 AM   #15
pez
Registered User
 
Join Date: Oct 2004
Location: Minneapolis
Posts: 26
Send a message via AIM to pez Send a message via Yahoo to pez
Quote:
Originally Posted by 97Boxsterian
After having great time with my 97 Boxster for about 1 month, the hard starting problem comes back I bought my baby to Porsche dealer yesterday and they call me today telling me the Mass Air Flow Sensor is bad. It will cost me $500 for part and $300 for labor. Do you think I can replace the sensor myself? Should I try replace the filter first and see if it fix the problem? Please help!
Yup, I'm in the same boat as you , you can try getting a T-20 anti-tamper torx and some electrical contact cleaner and clean the business end of the MAF some people have had luck with that. I have not had a chance to get to mine yet.
You are lucky the MAF you have in your box is the older design and you should be able to replace it yourself fairly easily. (the newer version MAF requires it to be programmed into the ECU $$)

For replacing the filter first? Iím assuming you mean the Air filter, do you have an oiled filter like a K&N on there? Has the Check engine light come on? (if so you should try to get a OBD-2 reader and get the codes). If the check engine light is on the MAF is already hosed and changing the filter will not change the symptom.

Do a search on http://www.renntech.org/ I was going to post a link to a thread there but the site is currently being updated and is down for a bit.

Pez
pez is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-05-2005, 09:39 PM   #16
Registered User
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Los Angeles
Posts: 40
Quote:
Originally Posted by pez
Yup, I'm in the same boat as you , you can try getting a T-20 anti-tamper torx and some electrical contact cleaner and clean the business end of the MAF some people have had luck with that. I have not had a chance to get to mine yet.
You are lucky the MAF you have in your box is the older design and you should be able to replace it yourself fairly easily. (the newer version MAF requires it to be programmed into the ECU $$)

For replacing the filter first? Iím assuming you mean the Air filter, do you have an oiled filter like a K&N on there? Has the Check engine light come on? (if so you should try to get a OBD-2 reader and get the codes). If the check engine light is on the MAF is already hosed and changing the filter will not change the symptom.

Do a search on http://www.renntech.org/ I was going to post a link to a thread there but the site is currently being updated and is down for a bit.

Pez
Thank you for the advice! My engine light is not on, so I guess I will try cleaning the MAF sense frist and see how it turns out. What is T-20 anti-tamper torx? Can I buy it in local auto accessory store like pepboys, autozone...etc.? Which kind of electrical contact cleaner would you recommend? I found lots of tread in renntech.org about MAF, I guess we don't need to be worried. I will try cleaning it next weekend and I will update you. Thank you
97Boxsterian is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-07-2005, 07:34 AM   #17
Registered User
 
deliriousga's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: USA!!
Posts: 1,159
Quote:
Originally Posted by 97Boxsterian
What is T-20 anti-tamper torx? Can I buy it in local auto accessory store like pepboys, autozone...etc.? Which kind of electrical contact cleaner would you recommend? I found lots of tread in renntech.org about MAF, I guess we don't need to be worried. I will try cleaning it next weekend and I will update you. Thank you
The T-20 anti-tamper (aka security) torx is a torx wrench with a hole in the middle of it. The screw holding the MAF in has a small peg in the middle of the torx hole to keep you from being able to work on it yourself. They are available at most auto parts stores and easy to find online if nobody local carries it.

For electronics cleaner, I'd just go to Radio Shack and get some. I have a hard time finding it at auto shops.

Good luck!

__________________
1987 928S4 Silver Metallic (980)/Navy (TP) 5-Speed
2000 Boxster Speed Yellow/Black 5-Speed
1966 Wife White/Brown Top
1986 Daughter White/Brown Top (Sold!)
1992 Daughter White/Blonde Top
deliriousga is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On




All times are GMT -8. The time now is 12:13 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Content Relevant URLs by vBSEO 3.6.0
Copyright 2018 Pelican Parts, LLC - Posts may be archived for display on the Pelican Parts Website -    DMCA Registered Agent Contact Page