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Old 11-02-2013, 01:41 PM   #1
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Not a good day for my 986S 2001. Smoke and engine dead

not a good day. on the motorway, cruising, maybe 80MPH, 3500rpm or so.


big cloud of smoke out the rear
(the cayenne behind me then backed off quick and changed lane! sensing trouble. expecting me to throw engine parts in my wake).

sensing doom, I slowed a little and started to pull over.

then some more puffs of smoke, pulled over, then engine shut down and the engine light came on, then all lights.

of course not risking a restart.

First thing you start thinking is IMS!!

no leaks at all. no clunks or grinding.

The whole episode was quite and smooth.

Got a tow home.

I have a cheap wifi OBDII reader. hooked up to iPhone,
only code its reading is P0304
nothing else, but it was cheap and I can't be certain it's telling me everything.

Nothing I can do, will have to get the garage to sort it out,

but wonder if you know that code, the smoke etc and might have a clue!!

smoke colour; wasn't white, wasn't blue. just smoke! not sure, was concentrating on the road.

Car (was) only worth 5K, Will be interesting to hear whether it's written off!
Hoping it's a 'cheap' fix.

The annoying thing is, if I get it fix, can I get my faith back in this individually car, or indeed the mark!

My first every major break down in 26 years so I guess it;s a shocker.

For you UK guys, make sure you join the RAC! I am glad I did, and will never leave home without it

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Old 11-02-2013, 01:50 PM   #2
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Sorry to hear of your misfortune. PO304 is misfire from cyl.# 4

Contact Autofarm &/or Hartech they are the best in the UK for these engines.
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Old 11-02-2013, 02:06 PM   #3
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Based on my scanty description you think it's serious?
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Old 11-02-2013, 02:07 PM   #4
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P0304 code means: cylinder 4 misfire damaging to the catalytic converter. My quick search suggests that a bad coil pack can cause trigger this code. Not sure how that would cause / explain smoke. If you want to run a quick check for internal damage, inspect the oil filter for metal debris. Hopefully you don't see any and have reason to hope.

PS: a failed air oil separator can create huge smokescreen behind your car.

Last edited by thom4782; 11-02-2013 at 02:10 PM.
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Old 11-02-2013, 02:12 PM   #5
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it's beyond my abilities to fix! Luckily there's a porsche specialist garage I use a few miles away. I'll need to get them to tow it in and check it out
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Old 11-02-2013, 02:40 PM   #6
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it's beyond my abilities to fix! Luckily there's a porsche specialist garage I use a few miles away. I'll need to get them to tow it in and check it out
sad to hear... The fact it's not leaking is a good sign. Here's to hoping it's just the AOS
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Old 11-02-2013, 03:56 PM   #7
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Cylinder 4 hydro locks earlier than all others during an AOS failure. This is due to intake manifold characteristics.

I bet you have an AOS failure. Collateral damage TBD.
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Old 11-02-2013, 04:34 PM   #8
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Cylinder 4 hydro locks earlier than all others during an AOS failure. This is due to intake manifold characteristics.

I bet you have an AOS failure. Collateral damage TBD.
when you say ' hydro-locks' do you mean, as in fluid doesn't compress so... carnage. Is there no end to how these things (Porsche's) will destroy themselves???
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Old 11-02-2013, 07:28 PM   #9
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Nothing to worry other than having to change your AOS unit ($300 job sadly)

Friend here had the same thing happening to his 986 of the freeway. HUGE puff of smoke, car/engine stalled because of all the oil found its way in the cylinders at once and that doesn't burn too well. Dash lights went on (solid CEL), we all panic, etc etc etc.... same as yours.

If the engine simply stalled slowly and you didn't heard any damage-style noise then the engine is just fine mate.

Hydro-lock, whatever that means, would have "locked" the engine and you would have heard it badly I believe. Possibly wheel locks and all as well......

Wouldn't worry too much. Also, because some oil found its way in the exhaust system, your O2 sensors will be next Cheap cheap fix
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Old 11-02-2013, 11:07 PM   #10
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Hydro Lock doesn't actually seize the engine in the majority of scenarios that occur at speed.

The cylinder does not have to become completely filled with oil for the top ring to break, which is what generally happens with #4, or the cylinder will crack/ D chunk.

There's also the possibility that you just fouled the #4 spark plug, because that cylinder sees the most oil and sees it faster than the other cylinders.

Quote:
Is there no end to how these things (Porsche's) will destroy themselves???
Come hang out here for a week... Your mind will be blown.
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Old 11-02-2013, 11:30 PM   #11
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Come hang out here for a week... Your mind will be blown.
We are only buying these crappy pcars for the fake gold emblem mate. My little red 986 fits perfectly in the right hand side of the garage here Looks good, and always clean!

Love my (wife's) Land Rover... brutal and resistant engineering style

MY DD is a Ferrari
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Old 11-02-2013, 11:33 PM   #12
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interesting to find out about the top ring flipping because of 'oil'. Not funny

You gotta love these cars
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Old 11-03-2013, 01:24 AM   #13
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I did spot the oil was down to the minimum mark on the dip stick.
Had oil change only a couple of months back.
So I guess that missing oil blew out of my exhaust
Yesterday!

Will I lose faith in this car now?
Is it 'just one of those things' that can happen to any car?
Surely in general they are as reliable as
Any other cat.
My confidence is shaken but hopefully it will be restored
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Old 11-03-2013, 01:46 AM   #14
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It's a 12 year old, high-performance car.

Obviously there are MUCH WORSE things that could have happened.. and they didn't (yet, knock on wood).

Sounds like your AOS went out, and after replacing it you should be good for hopefully quite a while.

Good luck friend.
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Old 11-03-2013, 04:30 AM   #15
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Will I lose faith in this car now?
I don't know how to describe this car/engineering in all honesty. They are NOT crappy cars, I take my words back and apologize for being misleading (was just pulling J. Raby's legs).

They are in fact, "delicate cars", Porsche. That's how I should have described it at first place. You have to know them in & out very well, listen to them, plug them regularly, carry out overkill maintenance (e.g. oil@5,000km, MAF@20,000km, O2@40,000km, coil pack&plugs@60,000km) and chances are they work flawlessly - s p o t - o n as per design.

However, forget about 1 (one) of those maintenance item and you may see things going completely wrong very very fast.... that's the only bad thing about these pcars, or should we say "precision engineered cars".

Unfortunately Porsche can't select their customer base. That is why you get the impression that the car is unreliable. But ask any real Porsche enthusiasts and they will tell you, it is a great piece of engineering, after all.

It is a 12 years old car indeed. Scan it every 3 months, parked or DD, whatever. Make it a routine and you are going to be laughing for the next 25 years (min) with this car
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Old 11-03-2013, 04:35 AM   #16
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(wow I sound like a car indy pro mechanic enthusiast).

Should we give credit to 986forum to be dead honest. Most that I've learn about the Porsche in and out is HERE!!!! On this forum.

Get that AOS done and stick around, great help....... to built a 'confidence' with this car if you don't have one already
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Old 11-03-2013, 04:54 AM   #17
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These cars require preventive measures. Things like the water pump and AOS are items that require proactive replacement and these are well-known issues.

How many reports like this one do people have to read to finally believe that it CAN happen to them?
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Old 11-03-2013, 05:25 AM   #18
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These cars require preventive measures. Things like the water pump and AOS are items that require proactive replacement and these are well-known issues.

How many reports like this one do people have to read to finally believe that it CAN happen to them?
Agreed, but I really don't think every Boxster owner should run down today and buy packs, tubes, a water pump, and engine mounts if their car is running perfect and they scope around for drips and pay attention during oil changes. Wouldn't regular coolant changes help that water pump? With the good juice, not what's on special?

Tracked cars will need more bolt on parts swapped?

The IMS thing is almost like something Las Vegas dreamed up. What are my odds?? Some look perfect when pulled from 120k mile engines.

Oil at 5k. Mine looks as gold as when I poured it in.

Agreed again, but swapping parts just for prevent if zero wear signs? Maybe IMS because you can't see it, but most other parts cry first, like the AOS. Mine had oil all over it. Just had to visually inspect it, but that required removing the engine cover.
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Old 11-03-2013, 09:44 AM   #19
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Jake, what do you recommend as the replacement interval for the Water pump and AOS?

My Boxster is a 2000 S with low Kms (42,000) with original Water Pump and AOS.

I have read that a good check for the AOS is to pull off the Oil Cap at idle and if it's difficult to remove then AOS needs replacing.

Thanks in advance.
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Old 11-03-2013, 11:45 AM   #20
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Jake, what do you recommend as the replacement interval for the Water pump and AOS?

My Boxster is a 2000 S with low Kms (42,000) with original Water Pump and AOS.

I have read that a good check for the AOS is to pull off the Oil Cap at idle and if it's difficult to remove then AOS needs replacing.

Thanks in advance.
A better check is simply if there is any oil residue on or in the vent pipe on top of the AOS.

Why swap a perfectly good part(s)???

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