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Old 04-14-2024, 09:15 AM   #1
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JP Summers's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2021
Location: NE Ohio
Posts: 14
Replacing Rear Brake Hard Lines

Replacing Rear Hard Brake Lines on a Porsche 986 Boxster (early model, 1997)

Not a job for the faint of heart. There’s reasons dealerships charge $2k-$5k to do this. It’s a slow, tedious job that’s not hard to do but time consuming and extremely frustrating. 
I opted to recondition all my brakes, replace the soft lines, Rotors & pads and replace my tires while i had the car in the air and wheels pulled off.

Ratings are: 
Blood 3 , Sweat 4, Swearing 9, 
Difficulty 7,
 Frustration 10

OEM Pre-Bent Lines from Pelican
Part #: 996-355-177-13-OEM
Part #: 986-355-190-12-OEM
Part #: 986-355-189-09-OEM
2 Quarts DOT 4 Brake Fluid

Optional (may as well do it all while the car’s in the air)
4 Soft Brake Lines (One for each wheel)
Rotors & Pads


Full set of Metric Flare Wrenches,
Thread Conditioning, Tool Set, 
Pliers, Screw Drivers, Socket Wrench Set, Combination Wrench Set 
PIWIS or Durametric Computer Software, 
Pressure Bleeder, 
Highly Recommend a QuickJack for raising the car. 

The Beginning

Raise the car, remove the wheels (Front Left, Both Rear). Remove the left front inner fender cover. Remove the Left headlight, Remove the trim surrounding the ABS Module in the left Frunk. Remove the Washer Fluid Bottle. Locate the Distribution Module in the fender on the top front fender well.

Remove bottom plastic protective panels from the belly of the car. Especially on the Left Rocker Panel, under the Driver’s Seat. This is where the Splitter Block, Porsche calls it a Connector Piece (PN-996-355-660-06) for the Rear Brakes is Located. It’s liable to also need replaced since they’re prone to cracking

From this point the Hard Line from the distribution module to the Connection Piece can be removed. This line tracks from the distribution module along the top of the inner fender, down the back of the fender, then under the rocker panel. 

Remove from Dist. Module end first, unclip all the retainers, Then slide line forward. Insert in reverse. Sliding new line under the rocker panel first, then maneuvering into place along the rear & top of fender well. 

Next to Remove the Left Rear Brake Line. Remove the forward fender well plastic piece. Uncouple the line from flexible line & connector piece, unclip from retainers and slide out the rear of the fender well. 
Install in the reverse order.

Ok, two down one to go. The most difficult. To remove the old line I needed to cut it in a couple places. Put the top into the Service Position, remove the engine cover.
First cut I made was where it turns up along the rear firewall. I removed that piece by sliding out from under the left wheel well. 
Second was where it turns forward along the right suspension area. Removing that piece through the right wheel well.
I then removed the piece along the firewall noting which cables, tubes, etc. it ran under.

To install that line I inserted it as an inverted “U” from over the engine, routing the end for the right brake under the lines it needed to go under. Then from under the car gently routing it through the path it needed to follow. I then carefully kept pulling line through for another 2 to 3 feet to make room for the other end. 
I then followed the same procedure on the left side, routing the line behind the air duct, along the firewall, over the wheel arch, down to the rocker panel. Some shifting back & forth to make sure the ends were in proper position was necessary.

Some bending was involved to get the lines routed as necessary. Then bent back to proper shape for fit. 
One kink in the line and it's GAME OVER. Requiring a new line or a splice midline to repair for the kink.
I then connected the lines from the Distribution Block, the Connection Piece and each wheel flexible line. Unfortunately, when I leak tested it with my pressure bleeder there was a leak at the Connection Piece. It had cracked where to supply line fed into it. This appears to be a common problem. Going along the routing of the new lines reconnecting the retainer clips. I also added zip ties in case any didn’t hold.

Then bleed the brakes and check for leaks before putting all the panels back in place.

I really hope this helps someone in the same position.

Connection Piece Part# 996-355-660-06

Last edited by JP Summers; 04-14-2024 at 09:20 AM.
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Old 05-16-2024, 10:04 AM   #2
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Join Date: Aug 2023
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 25
Thanks for the write up. As my lines are 27 years old now I will inspect them well, but might just change them out as precaution. Such description surely helps.

Would you mind sharing a price indication for the lines? I am wondering whether there is much benefit of having the Porsche lines instead of making my own lines from standard brake line.

For the rear caliper lines they charge about $50 each overhere. I also need a clutch line which costs another $100. Might better get some line and tools. Cheaper already and I'll have the stuff at hand for future work..
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Old 05-20-2024, 09:52 PM   #3
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Join Date: May 2022
Location: San Diego
Posts: 2
@JP Summers I commend you for all the work this takes but have to ask, why did you need to replace all the hard lines? I have replaced plenty of rubber lines with braided SS lines to the calipers but never had to replace hard lines to the brake master cylinder. Was there a corrosion issue or did they get damaged somehow? I wouldn't image fatigue was an issue. Thanks!

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986 , boxster , brakes , hard line , installation

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