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Old 06-19-2016, 08:19 AM   #1
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What is normal?

So when you inspect an oil filter and the sump, what do you consider normal?

A little back story. I bought my Boxster in December. I got it pretty cheap, no PPI, knew about the potential of an IMS issue. I did find some metal in the filter and sump, decided to replace the IMS bearing. I did the work, the old, dual row bearing was still intact but worn and wobbly, IM shaft was full of metal particles. Cleaned it up, put in a new bearing, flywheel and clutch.

I have driven it 5500 miles since and I have changed and inspected the filter 4 times during that period so I could understand what was going on inside the engine. The first filter captured quite a bit of metal debris which I expected. BTW, I have a spin on filter and filter mag, both of which I highly recommend because I know that debris are not getting back into the engine once in the filter! Each filter change since the first has had much less visible metal as well as decreasing amounts of metal flour captured by the magnet.

At 5500 miles I changed the oil and dropped the sump. I really found nothing as far as metal in the sump, just one black plastic which probably came off the chain guide. I have 97,200 miles on the car.

Attached are some pics I took. There is still a small amount of metal flour being captured and a few tiny specs of metal. I could not see anything in the filter media.

My question is, what is normal to see in a filter for one of these engines? Can you expect to see no metal bits and no metal flour or will you always be capturing something due to engine wear?

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Old 06-19-2016, 11:29 AM   #2
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Looks fine to me but the fact that you had metal in the ims tube may come back to haunt. Common wisdom is that once the bearing starts shedding metal you cant just rellace it. You have to take the motor apart and clean it.

Although there are several accounts of people replacing bearings that were shedding metal and doing several oil changes immexiately and the motor survived.
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Old 06-19-2016, 03:30 PM   #3
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Normal is dirty looking oil.

Normal is a few black, yellow, or brown pieces of plastic or rubbery material around the size of a grain of rice.

Normal is a clean oil pan.

Anything more than this isn't normal.

Since you had metal in the oil before changing the IMS bearing, many of the remaining metal particles (metal flour) have continued to circulate in your oil.

With that being said, the sump, filter, and oil all look fairly normal. The metal "flour" should continue to decrease over time but if it doesn't, there really isn't anything that you can do about it.

At this point, continue to change the oil frequently and drive it.
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Old 06-20-2016, 10:14 PM   #4
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what year is your car? just curios

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