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Old 03-20-2006, 06:52 PM   #1
Registered User
Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: chicago
Posts: 6
new owner experience and cam housing leak

Thanks to all for a great site!

Well, I am now an official card-carrying member: 2001 S, one owner, 22,700 miles, sport package, tiptronic, 18” wheels, black exterior + beige interior.

I did what everyone says NOT to do - purchase online without a PPI. I realized it was a risk and went ahead for the following reasons:
- Ebay seller[broker] had a feedback score of 177 with 95.9% positive feedback.
- Seller said car condition “excellent” for every component.
- Seller said a Porsche mechanic inspected it, changed oil, and said it had no problems.
- Clean Carfax matched seller's and original dealer's info (current seller, original dealer, previous owner all in same area).
- Called dealer that originally sold car to check maintenance record: at 5,144 miles oil and filter change, replaced rear tire, replaced fuel cap (warranty), no other service recorded.
- Car had only one key, asked seller to provide another… he reluctantly agreed… while at dealer to program key, I called dealer and asked if they would perform an inspection, but dealer could not for at least a week... dealer went on to say he knows seller and has a solid, honest reputation.
- Car had everything I was looking for at $2K to $5K less than other similar cars that are/were recently for sale.

Received it last week – amazing! What a work of art and engineering!

Drove home and noticed a slight steering wobble at 30 mph and up. Parked in garage and smelled a little burning oil. Besides that, smiling ear to ear. (After driving for a couple of days, wobble dramatically reduced.)

Took it to a local dealer for an inspection and peace of mind, results were:
- Original battery at end of life and should be replaced.
- Front tires were scalloped on inside (Pirelli), tires appear to be original.
- Oil leak at camshaft housing cover, dripping on exhaust.
- Everything else in very good shape.

So here are the options:
- Local Porsche service/dealer asking $1850 to replace gasket of cam housing cover, says needs to drop exhaust to do it and takes about 8 hours.
- Recommended 30K service for $1160 with spark plugs be changed at same time because they will be easily accessible during above procedure.
- Recommended brake flush for $265 [I will do this].
- Recommended replacing 2 front tires for $590 [I will replace all 4 tires next season].
- Offering credit of -$375 if cam housing + 30K service performed together.
- Offering credit of -$150 of done within 30 days because of reduntant checks just performed with inspection.
- 15% off with PCA membership.

I understand it was a risk to purchase without a PPI, and that owning a 5 year old, high-performance car will require maintenance.
My goal is to make the best of it, take care of this car, and hopefully get many years of enjoyment from it... here are a few questions:
- I read a lot about RMS, but only saw a couple posts on cam housing leaks, is this unusual? (dealer says that around/after 2001 Porsche switched to better gasket/sealant material)
- $1800 to replace cam housing gaskets high?
- Is it that much easier to change plugs during this, or can they be changed relatively easily without dropping the exhaust?
- After discounts, $2,110 for new cam housing seals + 30k service worth it?
- Is this leak considered a ‘mechanical problem’ that the seller should have disclosed?

I was a little reluctant to share all this (and risk being called foolish!), but i know i will learn something from it, and the info might possibly help others.

roleur is offline   Reply With Quote