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Old 05-17-2015, 08:02 AM   #1
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engine light

hi all,
I have a 1999 boxster 986 - just come back from a short run & the "engine warning light " has come on & doesn,t look as if it wants to go out !! can,t seem to find any info on this - anybody know what this may/does mean,should I start to worry & take out a second mortgage? only joking (I hope)
any advice more than welcomed - thankyou very much
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Old 05-17-2015, 08:13 AM   #2
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The CEL (check engine light) means that some problem has been detected and a code describing the problem has been stored in the car's control unit. You need a device to read this code so that you can start troubleshooting the issue.

For the home mechanic there is a device called the Durametric tool that can do this, and it costs about $300. Used ones can be picked up for $100 to $200. Now, fair warning - even if you get the tool to read the code, the message can be somewhat cryptic and will likely not point you directly to the problem unless you are experienced and know what you are doing.

Your best bet is likely to run the car in to the dealership or a good indy and have them determine the problem for you and give you an estimate of the cost of repair. At that point you can decide if you want them to carry out the repair or tackle it yourself.

I'm a little surprised that you have been unable to find this information as there are literally hundreds of posts about code issues on this forum alone. Did you try doing a search?




Hope that helps.
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Last edited by Mark_T; 05-17-2015 at 08:20 AM.
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Old 05-17-2015, 08:41 AM   #3
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The basic reason check engine lights exist is USA govt mandate that a warning be given if the engine loses tune to the point it pollutes more than it should.

Most of the times the misbehaving component is some sort of add-on thing such as a sensor, cat converter, etc. nothing likely catastrophic about those failures. On these engines, however, there could also be timing chain problems which could become more serious.

Given your seeming novice status when it comes to these things, it's going to be extra important you find an honest service group to diagnose the problem. It's a Porsche specialist much more than the guys at Pep Boys without question. Contact with members of your local Porsche club is highly recommended.
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Old 05-17-2015, 09:07 AM   #4
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I'll add that if the CEL is flashing (as opposed to just on) it is recommended that you shut the engine off immediately and have the car flat-decked to a service center as serious damage could occur.
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Old 05-17-2015, 12:24 PM   #5
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hi there,
thank you ikchris & mark for your replys - I will get onto this first thing in the morning & hopefully it won,t be to bad. the light is staying on & not flashinbut have noted all of the comments.
thankyou both again
kind regards - sally
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