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Old 07-17-2013, 02:25 PM   #1
SoK
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Car troubles, all my coolant drained out this weekend. Any advice?

Took the car to the lake this weekend and as I was driving home in the 90 degree heat, the coolant temp guage started to climb a little higher than normal. I figured it was normal since it was hot out and i had the ac cranked, so I ignored it.

About 3 miles from home at a stop light, the red light started blinking. The light turned right away and i made it all the way home without stopping again and the movement of the car did turn off the high temp light. Parked it in the garage and came out a few minutes later and saw a puddle of green coolant behind the rear passenger side tire.

I haven't had a chance yet to jack the car up and see if i can find where it came from, but would you guys have some likely culprits it could be, or some good things to at least check off the list before i have it towed to Porsche?

I'd prefer to do this myself versus paying their $120/hour labor rate just to change a busted radiator hose.

Thanks for any advice and recommendations!

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Old 07-17-2013, 02:33 PM   #2
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That's probably exactly what you have. A busted radiator hose underneath the overflow tank, the overflow tank itself (which are known to crack with age and heat) or quite possibly, the crappy plastic clamp Porsche uses has cracked and fallen off and everything leaked out in a hurry.

It's a tough area to get to and work in. Unless you have small hands and a lot of patience, a trip to an experienced boxster tech may be in order. I certainly wouldn't take it to a stealership though. No clue where "NKY" is, but you should find an indy mechanic to work on your car. It's saved me thousands over the last nine years of ownership.
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Old 07-17-2013, 03:56 PM   #3
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how mny miles do you have on your Box? my waterpump went out at 65k miles. my understanding is that this is a common problem.

good luck
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Old 07-17-2013, 05:13 PM   #4
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For my two cents worth, I'd have to agree with Randall. The tank actually has an overflow hose in to the right wheel well area. At least my 99 does. And from what I have read, if a tank, hose, etc. in that area fails it can leak in to the trunk and drain from the same area. I'd suggest popping up the carpet, removal of the wooden underlayer, and an examination of the tank area to see if that is where the coolant is coming from. If so, search the boards and you'll find lots of info on replacing the tank. Good info on Pelican Parts too.
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Old 07-18-2013, 08:56 AM   #5
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Thanks for the details guys! My boxster has 66k miles and I put about 8 or 9k a year on it, so it gets driven a lot.

NKY is Northern Kentucky. I'm about 10 minutes from Cincinnati.

I'll look around for an indi Porsche mechanic and see if I can just have it towed there this weekend or next week.

From what I've read so far, the bleeding process is a pain in the ass, so I don't want to have to mess with it. Hopefully it's just a hose or a clamp they can replace and refill/bleed in an hour or so.
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Old 07-18-2013, 01:31 PM   #6
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Cars on the way to a local referred shop. I'll update when they figure out what happened... Fingers crossed.
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Old 07-19-2013, 08:21 AM   #7
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From what I've read here and the diagnosis from the shop, the water pump "went bad" (I'm guessing the impellers have worn down".

This caused the overheating which led to the coolant overflowing as it wasn't being circulated properly.

So they're doing the waterpump, the thermostat while they're in there, some gaskets, new porsche coolant and labor for a total of $1k.

It's all oem parts from the porsche dealer up in Ohio. It'll be done by the end of the day which is pretty surprising. I just had the car towed there and dropped off at 530 and it'll be completely finished within 24 hours.

What's your thoughts? Seem like a fair bill for what's being done? The waterpump was something like $384 alone.
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Old 07-19-2013, 08:58 AM   #8
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$1K is a fair price. I just paid $1.2K a couple of days ago.

If the impeller had broken pieces, ask the shop to do what they can to find the missing ones. If they get in the engine, they can clog the coolant passages.
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Old 07-19-2013, 09:48 AM   #9
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I'll let them know to call me if the WP had any broken fins.

Wish I had been prepared with an aftermarket pump with metal fins, but oh well. I shouldn't have to worry about this for another 8 years if it lasts as long as the first.

And to answer an earlier question, I have almost 67,000 miles on the car. It's been rock solid in the 3 years I've owned it, so I'm not upset about this. I had the 60k service and then some done at 42k miles when i bought it, so hopefully this is all I have to deal with for another 3 or 4 years.

And I still love driving this car every day. Putting the top down on the way home from work on a friday and letting the engine rev out is awesome
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Last edited by SoK; 07-19-2013 at 09:54 AM.
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Old 07-19-2013, 10:20 AM   #10
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The word is that aftermarket pumps tend to fail after about a year's use.

I've seen a lot of debate on metal v. composite water pumps. The risk with metal impellers is that they can eat into the engine block if the water pump bearing fails in such a way as to allow the impeller to wobble.

After reading up on the water pump issue across the forums, I've come to the conclusion that the Porsche pump is the only way to go. The aftermarket / metal impeller risk is not worth the money saved.
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Old 08-11-2013, 04:06 PM   #11
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Where did you wind-up going for service?? I'm also looking for a good independent in the Cincinnati area.
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Old 08-11-2013, 05:21 PM   #12
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Water pump, and replace the thermostat too.
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Old 08-12-2013, 04:39 AM   #13
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I just went through this exercise. OEM or a least composite impeller is the way to go. I did the work myself as I have time and a nice shop. Patience and the knowledge of the forum helped a lot. Did you get the latest coolant reservoir cap? You can search details on this site. They are $35.00 and you can just screw it on once the car is cool. That is not a bad price for parts and labor with a warranty. Now drop the top and enjoy!
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Old 08-12-2013, 07:08 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoK View Post
This caused the overheating which led to the coolant overflowing as it wasn't being circulated properly.
That is a little bit of wishful thinking. There is a good chance your coolant reservoir has cracked due to being over-pressurized.

Quote:
Originally Posted by SoK View Post
What's your thoughts?
Even if the coolant tank has not failed yet, there is an excellent chance that it will soon due to the fresh coolant and/or being stressed during the bleeding process.
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Old 08-12-2013, 07:49 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoK View Post
Thanks for the details guys! My boxster has 66k miles and I put about 8 or 9k a year on it, so it gets driven a lot.

NKY is Northern Kentucky. I'm about 10 minutes from Cincinnati.

I'll look around for an indi Porsche mechanic and see if I can just have it towed there this weekend or next week.

From what I've read so far, the bleeding process is a pain in the ass, so I don't want to have to mess with it. Hopefully it's just a hose or a clamp they can replace and refill/bleed in an hour or so.
I moved to Jacksonville Fl about 3 years ago from Cincinnati. Lived in Maineville and could see the fireworks every night from our house at Kings Island. I really miss me some Skyline! Did you take it to the Kings Automall Porsche shop?

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