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Old 06-07-2015, 07:42 AM   #1
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Re-setting a CEL

I am a new owner, new member here and have a question. Bought a 2003 Boxster S little over a week ago from an Auto dealer, not a Porsche dealer. I have a 30 day warranty. Car has 70,000 mi. After about 6 days and maybe 200mi the check engine light came on. I took it to AutoZone and used their computer and got CEL PO492,secondary air system, insufficient flow. I called the dealer and he said to take it to a local repair shop and get an estimate for repair and call them. I got a wild hair and thought I would try a different computer at O'Riely auto and when the guy checked it he said, "oh that's nothing, see it all the time" and reset the CEL. Now, a hundred mi later still no CEL!! What to do!! It is a bit different for me as I live in a very small town with no Porsche dealer. The car is for my girlfriend who lives in a larger town,(Columbia, Mo.) but still no Porsche dealer. 100mi from St. Louis which is where I bought the car. The dealer will repair free of charge problems for up to 30 days. I hate to take it to a foreign car repair shop in Columbia, Mo and tell them this story and leave them a car with no CEL on. Thoughts?
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Old 06-07-2015, 08:43 AM   #2
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Problems with the secondary air system are fairly common and most often it is one of the vacuum hoses that has cracked or become disconnected. The most expensive part that could be a problem is the blower (secondary air injection pump), which *can* cost over $500 new.
The system itself only operates during a cold start to clean emissions by providing more air to the exhaust for more complete combustion. It does not effect the performance of the car and was not even installed on cars marketed outside North America.
Not a big deal to have the Secondary air system fail, but a minor vacuum leak may lead to other problems. The other consideration is in some states it will cause you to fail an emissions test.
If it were me, I'd take it back to the dealer when I had time (during the warranty period) just to be sure. 100 miles... that should take just under an hour to drive right?
A dealer or import mechanic that does not normally work on Porsches may have a hard time tracking it down properly.
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Old 06-07-2015, 09:38 AM   #3
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Thanks for your reply. I appreciate it a lot. I think it is best if I just take it to a Porsche dealer. That air injection pump is at least running, cause I can hear it when I first start the engine.
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Old 06-07-2015, 11:20 AM   #4
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You need to check for a pending code also.
Fixing this problem is more an issue of understanding the system and the fragile vac hoses and iffy connectors. It would be unwise to give the task to anyone other than a Porsche Indie IMHO.
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Old 06-07-2015, 11:55 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gthomas View Post
I am a new owner, new member here and have a question. Bought a 2003 Boxster S little over a week ago from an Auto dealer, not a Porsche dealer. I have a 30 day warranty. Car has 70,000 mi. After about 6 days and maybe 200mi the check engine light came on. I took it to AutoZone and used their computer and got CEL PO492,secondary air system, insufficient flow. I called the dealer and he said to take it to a local repair shop and get an estimate for repair and call them. I got a wild hair and thought I would try a different computer at O'Riely auto and when the guy checked it he said, "oh that's nothing, see it all the time" and reset the CEL. Now, a hundred mi later still no CEL!! What to do!! It is a bit different for me as I live in a very small town with no Porsche dealer. The car is for my girlfriend who lives in a larger town,(Columbia, Mo.) but still no Porsche dealer. 100mi from St. Louis which is where I bought the car. The dealer will repair free of charge problems for up to 30 days. I hate to take it to a foreign car repair shop in Columbia, Mo and tell them this story and leave them a car with no CEL on. Thoughts?
Repeating codes are not based on miles they are based on a number of cycles that the system runs and are checked by the ECU. Cycles are based on run time, either minutes or hours depending on the system and component that failed. Secondary air system codes are hair pullers to figure out unless someone who understands the Porsche diagnostic tree and has correct diagnostic equipment. A year ago I pulled a CEL that was caused by two secondary air system codes that has been diagnosed as the failure of two diaphragms in the secondary air system. Because I didn't need to have my car smogged I put off repairing them until this year. The car has been running fine with no other issues than fewer mpg which is caused by the vacuum leak in one, or both diaphragms, that will cause the ECU to add more fuel to the mixture. The repairs are not cheap so it is a good thing the dealer you bought it from will repair it under warranty.
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