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Old 11-18-2018, 12:06 PM   #1
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I am being given a 2002 Boxster S that has been sitting for 8 years....

Hello,

I'm a long time car enthusiast who knows his way around an engine bay but I'm not dialed in on Boxsters nor have I dealt with a modern car that has been sitting for 8 years under a tarp in Nashville, TN. Any tips on getting the engine up and running and the car driveable. My biggest concern is if the engine is seized. Of course all fluids, hoses, belts, tires etc will need attention. Probably brake lines?

So big question is the likelihood of the engine being seized and how to address. Thanks a lot.
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Old 11-18-2018, 02:20 PM   #2
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Search the internet for how to remove the spark plugs & rotate the engine "CLOCKWISE ONLY Once you are ready to rotate the engine by hand squirt a ounce or 2 on each cylinder wall. Once you replace the spark plugs & coils put as much fresh gas in the tank as you can along with some gas restore product.
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Old 11-18-2018, 03:35 PM   #3
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Squirt an ounce or 2 of motor oil in each cylinder is what I think BYproduct means? Hopefully that tarp was a decent one and secured so it kept the immobilizer which is located under the driver's seat dry. Leaves can get in the two drains in the convertible top clamshell and the two in the front cowl. When those drains get clogged water gets into the interior and the immobilizer can get flooded. See if the carpet behind the seats is dry, that will be a good sign. The metal brake lines can be inspected and might be ok. After the engine is running I would see how the brakes work - can the wheels turn and can the brakes be applied and hold the wheel from turning. Then look at the condition of the flexible rubber brake lines, maybe replace those and flush the brake fluid and bleed the system if the master cylinder and calipers don't need any maintenance first.

Lots of great people on this board and lots of helpful information. Good luck, keep us posted and post some pictures.
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Old 11-18-2018, 09:22 PM   #4
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Buy the Bentley Shop Manual, and possibly the 101 Boxster Projects book avail right here on Pelican. If it were me I would take all the engine panels off (2) looking for anything obvious, make sure the radiators are clear and clean and no critters have found their way into anything, then do as mentioned in the other posts above. You didnít mention manual or Tip, operate the clutch a few times if manual to see how it feels and move the gear shift through the range to see if smooth. If the engine starts it may sound like a rattle can for a few seconds and might possibly tick for a bit as well. I would then check the operation of all of the electronics. The rubber bits, suspension etc is all the easy, probably given, stuff. With these cars itís the fluids and particularly the electronics that are potentially vulnerable to sitting around. If everything works as it should, change the fluids and take it out for a bit. They are great little cars!
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Old 11-19-2018, 05:10 AM   #5
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You lucky bastard
You have been given one of the best sports cars ever made
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Old 11-19-2018, 01:14 PM   #6
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Check under the driver's seat for water. If it's wet, check the immobilizer. It won't start if the immobilizer needs to be repaired/replaced. Good luck getting it up and running!
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Old 11-19-2018, 04:44 PM   #7
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Thanks for all the great info!....even if I was called a Bastard...all be it, a lucky one. Very true. Ah Jeez, an immobilizer, huh? I hope it's dry because electrical bugs can be the worst esp in these computer controlled engines. I should be getting the car in January/February. I'm a detail fanatic so I'll take pictures of it as it sits and then along the way. The thorough bath/detail will be last. I'm sure I'll have more questions as they arise. I sure hope this immobilizer is not high on the Porsche price list.
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Old 11-19-2018, 10:29 PM   #8
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Thanks for all the great info!....even if I was called a Bastard...all be it, a lucky one. Very true. Ah Jeez, an immobilizer, huh? I hope it's dry because electrical bugs can be the worst esp in these computer controlled engines. I should be getting the car in January/February. I'm a detail fanatic so I'll take pictures of it as it sits and then along the way. The thorough bath/detail will be last. I'm sure I'll have more questions as they arise. I sure hope this immobilizer is not high on the Porsche price list.
As long as it doesn’t/hasn’t gotten wet it should be fine. Even if it did get wet, they can (usually) be fixed/cleaned. Pretty much every single thing on these cars has a sensor, or switch, or something. The electronics overall are pretty robust, and not too nightmarish to figure out. Most of the stuff is fairly common and there is a wealth of knowledge on the board here. It would be worthwhile, if you even suspect water intrusion, to pull the driver’s seat and remove and inspect the immobilizer. Do this before you put a battery in it to avoid airbag warnings etc. it is a very easy thing to pull and remove the cover to look at the circuit board.
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Old 11-20-2018, 08:01 AM   #9
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Congratulations!

Do you have any photos of the car sitting under the tarp? I'm sure that I am not the only one who would like to see what you're getting into! (and by the way, we only have one rule here on the forum: pictures or it never happened, so post up some pic's to share with everyone.)

Budget about $1,500 to get everything up to date: battery, tires, spark plugs, spark plug tubes, air filter, oil, oil filter, fuel filter, cabin filter, wiper blades, coolant, wheel alignment, brake fluid. Check the brake pads and rotors and replace as necessary. Of course, my cost estimate might vary a bit, especially depending on which tires you select, but it will be somewhere in the range of $1,500.

The only thing you would need to have done at a shop is the tire installation/balance and wheel alignment; everything else you can do yourself using Wayne's 101 Boxster Project book which includes step by step guides. The step by step guides can also be found online here: https://www.pelicanparts.com/boxster/boxster_tech.htm.

You don't mention if the car was up and running perfectly when it was parked eight years ago? Its rare that a perfectly running car gets parked (it happens, but not typical). More typical is that there was a problem that sidelined the car which was never repaired and so the car just sat parked unprepared. Do you know the history?

Disclosure Statement: FYI - Wayne Dempsey wrote the Boxster book and he also owns Pelican Parts, a great source for all of the parts you might need. Pelican Parts is also the owner of this Forum.

Best of luck and let us know how it goes when you get the car!
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Last edited by thstone; 11-20-2018 at 08:03 AM.
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Old 11-21-2018, 11:36 AM   #10
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Congratulations!

Do you have any photos of the car sitting under the tarp? I'm sure that I am not the only one who would like to see what you're getting into! (and by the way, we only have one rule here on the forum: pictures or it never happened, so post up some pic's to share with everyone.)

Budget about $1,500 to get everything up to date: battery, tires, spark plugs, spark plug tubes, air filter, oil, oil filter, fuel filter, cabin filter, wiper blades, coolant, wheel alignment, brake fluid. Check the brake pads and rotors and replace as necessary. Of course, my cost estimate might vary a bit, especially depending on which tires you select, but it will be somewhere in the range of $1,500.

The only thing you would need to have done at a shop is the tire installation/balance and wheel alignment; everything else you can do yourself using Wayne's 101 Boxster Project book which includes step by step guides. The step by step guides can also be found online here: https://www.pelicanparts.com/boxster/boxster_tech.htm.

You don't mention if the car was up and running perfectly when it was parked eight years ago? Its rare that a perfectly running car gets parked (it happens, but not typical). More typical is that there was a problem that sidelined the car which was never repaired and so the car just sat parked unprepared. Do you know the history?

Disclosure Statement: FYI - Wayne Dempsey wrote the Boxster book and he also owns Pelican Parts, a great source for all of the parts you might need. Pelican Parts is also the owner of this Forum.

Best of luck and let us know how it goes when you get the car!
Awesome detailed info that I will use. Thank you. If I can get this car running for under $2k then I'll be thrilled! Actually, the car was up and running fine. I'm not sure why my uncle lost interest in it. It sat in the garage for awhile and then outside. It was a second car for him. It is a 6 speed, black over tan leather. I'll do some of the reading from the resource above. I need to see if I can even access the engine to do all that work. It needs a new top as well.

I'm familiar with Pelican Parts as I had an 86 911 Targa back in 2008 when they were only worth $15k, Doh!

I won't get the car until January or so but I'll take pics then and thru the process. Thanks
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Old 05-23-2019, 07:45 PM   #11
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Well, I had it towed to a private shop for the mechanical estimate. Car has 61k miles and hasn't been started in about 8 years. Wait for it....$5300, and that doesn't include a top and tires. I'll be $7500-$8000 into it. Here's a break down of the estimate. They had it running today with the old gas and oil.
Front Brakes/Rotors installed - $580
Rear Brakes/Rotors installed - $585
Battery was already installed at $207 and an hour's labor for total of $261
Brake fluid flush $130
Oil Change $145
Plugs, air filter, cabin filter, drive belt, fuel filter, $60 wiper blades $1194
Water pump, drive belt, idler/tensioner pulleys and coolant flush $1675
Oil level sensor $145

How bad am I getting it? Any recs on a decent black top replacement with glass window that is reasonably priced? I'll also be looking at decent but economical tires. Thanks. I don't have the pics posted to a site so I cant post the "Tarp Pics".
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Old 05-23-2019, 07:48 PM   #12
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Do I take it that you aren't comfortable DIY?

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Old 05-24-2019, 04:59 AM   #13
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I'm comfortable DIY but haven't done water pump/pulley's etc on a porsche. The bigger issue is if it's going to take them 15-20 hours then it's going to take me 25-30 hours. Family responsibilities aren't very conducive for that these days....or at least my wife says so. I'm going to look into doing part of it on my own. I'm assuming the water pump/tensioners/pulley's is the most difficult part listed? Can the plugs be gotten to and changed pretty easily? It was $120 just for plugs.
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Old 05-24-2019, 05:31 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Bravo 8 View Post
Well, I had it towed to a private shop for the mechanical estimate. Car has 61k miles and hasn't been started in about 8 years. Wait for it....$5300, and that doesn't include a top and tires. I'll be $7500-$8000 into it. Here's a break down of the estimate. They had it running today with the old gas and oil.
Front Brakes/Rotors installed - $580
Rear Brakes/Rotors installed - $585
Battery was already installed at $207 and an hour's labor for total of $261
Brake fluid flush $130
Oil Change $145
Plugs, air filter, cabin filter, drive belt, fuel filter, $60 wiper blades $1194
Water pump, drive belt, idler/tensioner pulleys and coolant flush $1675
Oil level sensor $145

How bad am I getting it? Any recs on a decent black top replacement with glass window that is reasonably priced? I'll also be looking at decent but economical tires. Thanks. I don't have the pics posted to a site so I cant post the "Tarp Pics".
Well if your in for $8k and it was free, when you sell it you will at least break even I would think. Dont cheap out on the tires, thats what keeps you connected to the road and will make a difference on how the car feels and drives.
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Old 05-24-2019, 06:01 AM   #15
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I'm not saying that the shop's fees are unreasonable, but I don't see anything on that list that is particularly difficult for an owner with some tools and ability to follow instructions.
IF you want to do some of this on your own, it is all covered multiple times on the forum. You just have to find the posts or ask for help after searching.
The brakes on the 986 are the easiest I've worked on out of all the cars I've owned. Water pump is not difficult, but you need to pay attention to things like a bolt being longer than others and not gumming it up with sealant. Changing wiper blades? Sounds easy, but a few of us have cracked windshields by accidentally having the 'un-wipered' arm fall against the glass. It's all written about and done by many that were pretty new to DIY.

Take a look thru some of this:
https://www.pelicanparts.com/boxster/boxster_tech.htm
DIY Projects
https://sites.google.com/site/mikefocke2/mikesporscheboxsterwebpages

Like books? get the 101 projects book and Bentley manual

Nothing wrong with paying a shop, but labor and shop costs add up and they will stick with known reliable parts rather than look to cut costs to save you a buck or two.

If you are looking at paying the full cost of restoration by a pro, you will be 'underwater' with this car - you'd be better off selling it as-is and buying another. It's a free car, what do you have to lose by diving in and learning to fix it all yourself?


*Disclaimer* If you do decide to do it all yourself I accept no responsibility for any damages caused, or financial loss. Safety glasses, gloves, and hearing protection for small children that may hear your utterings are highly recommended.
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Old 05-24-2019, 06:15 AM   #16
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I'd echo what 78350 just said. None of that is particularly difficult stuff. Honestly, if I were looking at that list, the two items that I'd dread the most are bleeding the brakes and flushing the coolant. Both are, in my opinion, a serious pain in the a$$, because you now have to deal with fluid you removed.... but otherwise, not difficult.

my caveat: I've no idea where the oil-level sensor is..... maybe that ones a 8!7ch. I dunno.

assuming the car is REALLY, REALLY nice (paint looks great, interior looks great, suspension components all work properly without making any noises, the top looks good, no wear, no faded rear-window, etc etc) then when you're done, you've got car worth about $8k. In my opinion, this would make sense if you have some emotional attachment to the car. But otherwise, I;d look at it another way:

1. DIY it. Take your time. So what if it takes you a year, or even two? You'll learn a lot, and you'll be into the car maybe $2500 - $3000. That's pretty low-impact, that I bet your wife could get behind. :-)

2. Sell it as is, find another one that's good-to-go. You can probably get $1500 out of the car as-is (maybe more, you haven't shown us pics) and then turn around and find a good deal on another one for $7k.

Just my $0.02
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Old 05-24-2019, 06:41 AM   #17
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Their time is book time, not actual time. At $150/hr labor is $3k. My guess is that your time - working on the car after reading up - will be the same or less as theirs. Folks here are very, very helpful and the Bentley and 101 books, with all those photos and parts lists will both save money and provide a series of "teaching moments". There are still no cheap Porsches, but one can reduce costs, learn, and pay that knowledge forward by maintaining one's own stuff. Good luck.
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Old 05-24-2019, 06:53 AM   #18
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From your list the only things I haven't done myself are the water pump, fuel filter and oil level sensor. Everything else I did in my own garage without a lift, only ramps and jack stands. I did make an investment in a Motive power bleeder for the brakes and a coolant system vacuum/fill device but these are things I will use again. The brakes were surprisingly easy as were the spark plugs. As for disposing of brake fluid, oil and coolant Canadian Tire, an auto supply store, will take used auto fluids for recycling. There has to be similar places where you are.

Make some connections through the PCA and see if there are fellow local Boxster or 911 DIY owners who can lend assistance. I find most other owners are very willing to lend a hand.
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Old 05-24-2019, 12:36 PM   #19
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So I haven't seen anything posted about draining the gas tank. Probably gunked up. Injector cleaning either.
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Old 05-24-2019, 05:35 PM   #20
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I just finished doing all of those myself AND a clutch, rear main seal, IMS bearing and various other odds/ends.
I'd also recommend changing the front motor mount while you are replacing the water pump. makes the WP job easier

you can do the job yourself for less than half the estimate you got, but yes it will take some time
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