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Old 10-17-2005, 05:55 AM   #1
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Two stupid Boxster tricks- now check engine is on

Good morning,

Okay, stupid Boxster trick #1. I know good and well my 00 Box shouldn't be in the automatic car wash anyway, but thanks to Northern VA being perpetually under construction, I had an emergent need for a wash Saturday morning. All was well, however, as soon as I pulled out of the wash, I realized that my check engine light had come in while I was in there.

My guess is that perhaps the pressure of the car wash triggered a sensor.

My other stupid Boxster trick of the week was my failure to replace my gas cap after refueling last Sunday. I saw in my rear view mirror my gas cap flying rapidly down Route 1 in Stafford. Ugh. Anyway, that same day the nice man at AutoZone was able to get me a replacement, however I understand that since the gas cap was off the majority of the day that the forced air could very likely cause my check engine light to come on. (why didn't it come on when I started up without the gas cap anyway?!!!).

Help! The car operates just fine and dandy, and my guess is one of the two stupid Boxster tricks has triggered my check engine.

Any thoughts? Thanks!!!!

Ruth
Sunflower 1975914
Stafford, VA
2000 Boxster Ocean Blue
Former parent of Sunflower, my nearly mint 75 914

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Old 10-17-2005, 07:07 AM   #2
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I vote a strong yes on the gas cap, this happened to me.

On the car wash, who knows? I don't take the Box through the car wash.

Let us know what codes got tripped.

Good luck!

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Old 10-17-2005, 07:15 AM   #3
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That CEL might come on again unless you get a Porsche gas cap.
Some aftermarket caps don't secure hard enough and the sensor is triped.

might be good to get an OBD II reader. You can get them on ebay, it will
tell you the error code of why the CEL went on to begin with.
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Old 10-17-2005, 08:08 AM   #4
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If it's the gas cap and the new one fits properly and seals, it will go away within 100 miles. If it doesn't then I'd go to Autozone and have them pull the codes so you have a better idea.
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Old 10-17-2005, 10:49 AM   #5
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With reference to the car wash, I wonder how sensitive the air inlet is to getting water in the intake?
I was reading a Road & Track long-term test report on a Mini Cooper S. Seems they ran the car through a puddle and got water in the intake, resulting in a "hydrolocked" cylinder and a rod stuffed through the side of the block. One new engine and $9,000 later it ran like a watch again.
Ouch.
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Old 10-18-2005, 09:55 AM   #6
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Thanks - let's see what Autozone has to say

Thanks guys!! I kind of figured as much, so I'll pop into my friendly little Autozone this evening and see if they can pull the code for me. I'll report back and let you know what it is! Hopefully no $9,000 engine replacement!! HAHA :-))

Happy Tuesday!
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Old 10-18-2005, 12:11 PM   #7
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As a new Boxster owner, I've learned A LOT from this terrific forum. And I'm still learning, which is why I hoping someone will indulge me and expalin:

What is an OBD II reader? (I've seen this mentioned elsewhere in the forum)

What does it mean to "go to Autozone and have them pull the codes"? Does this mean give you the part number for a Porsche gas cap, or is it a diagnostic function.

Thanks!

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Old 10-18-2005, 12:18 PM   #8
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OBD II is a small hand held computer that plugs into the Boxster just to the right of the clucth. It will give you a numeric code of the 'Error' message.
THe computer will allow you to remove the error code and the CEL light will turn off.
YOu can have this done at Autozone rather than buying your own reader.
I bought the reader on Ebay for $80 and printed out some of the really scary codes and keep them in the cubby hole next to the reader.
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Old 10-18-2005, 02:08 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Perfectlap
OBD II is a small hand held computer that plugs into the Boxster just to the right of the clucth. It will give you a numeric code of the 'Error' message.
THe computer will allow you to remove the error code and the CEL light will turn off.
YOu can have this done at Autozone rather than buying your own reader.
I bought the reader on Ebay for $80 and printed out some of the really scary codes and keep them in the cubby hole next to the reader.

Amazing! I assume the reader comes with something like a booklet that tells you what the numeric code means, right?
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Old 10-18-2005, 02:34 PM   #10
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OBD II = On Board Diagnostic Tool, Version 2

Just as an FYI, you'll also see forum contributions saying "you need to have your mechanic take his PST2 tool and..."

PST2 - Porsche System Tool, Version 2

The difference between the OBD and the PST tools are the OBD is just for diagnosis... it will display codes, etc. and do it in a very generic way as it works for most any car younger than 1997.

The PST tool is a wonderful and expensive tool (like $3k used!) that Porsche dealerships and a few select mechanics have that will not only diagnose problems, but also show all kinds of stuff going on in your engine, with your emissions, your airbag system, etc. It can also clear out error codes your car generates and get rid of that nasty check engine light that bugs us all from time to time... especially those of us who own older boxsters.
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Old 10-18-2005, 06:03 PM   #11
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Okay, wow, thanks. This forum is so helpful, I agree. I stopped by Autozone tonight, and the OBD II read: P0455 - Emissions Control System Leak (Large). The rocket scientist at Autozone said it was a total emissions failure (amusing), but my guess with that code is obviously that my 3rd Stupid Boxster trick was to replace the OEM gas cap with a O-E-Cheap one.

Do you guys agree? If so, should I just order one off eBay and be done with it or get it from the dealer?
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Old 10-19-2005, 07:07 AM   #12
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Get an OEM gas cap from the dealer...would be a lot faster.

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