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Old 09-23-2014, 05:57 AM   #1
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Unhappy If it's not one thing, it's another

So my 1999 Boxster had a problem where it would slip out of gear and go into neutral. An issue that was really bugging me especially since I just bought it from a mechanic who just rebuilt the transmission. FINALLY got it out of the shop two weeks later after having the clutch pack and a bearing replaced. (All for free, thankfully, since these were all problems he should have seen when he rebuilt it).

Just got it, literally, yesterday, drove it to work today and about halfway to work, I started having a lot of smoke come from my engine. It wasn't black or white smoke, just a lot of basic smoke. I was on the interstate so I slowed down and pulled off an exit. Once I got onto the exit then, my car decided it didn't want to activate 3rd gear. So I'd switch from 2nd to 3rd and then just go into neutral. I pulled over and kept the car on and got out to check the smoke. It was just a lot, coming out of the entire back of the car, even the trunk. I thought it was oil burning off the exhaust, a problem I've had before, but it was more than I've seen. I turned the car off and waiting a minute or so and it stopped. I still had to get to work so I got back into the car and drove the rest of the way to work.

Apart from a bad smell, like some fluid burning off my exhaust, I didn't have a problem. No transmission slipping, like it did before the repair, no 3rd gear being inactive, no issues. And no more smoke.

I've only had this car for a month and a half and I'm already about to be at my wits end with it. I just don't know what to do with it anymore or if it's worth getting all these problems and issues fixed.

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Old 09-23-2014, 08:45 AM   #2
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I think your issue is deeper than the car itself. The problem from what you posted so far seems more like someone with not enough knowledge of these cars attempted to fix it to sell (your mechanic). Now all sorts of problems, the ones you know of and the ones you may not know, are popping up.
My 2001 S has been bullet proof and if you get it in the hands of people that know these cars well, you will have no issues in most cases, especially if you take the proactive approach and replace stuff before anything happens. Good examples are replacing the IMS bearing every time the clutch is replaced, get the better water pump/thermostat and so on.
I would start looking for a good independent mechanic in your area. Many people here I bet can recommend you one.

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Old 09-23-2014, 10:00 AM   #3
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Crod's got it right. First thing you need is a QUALIFIED and TRUSTWORTHY mech to help you out with these things. I'm sure some on here can make a suggestion or two.
The Box is an amazing car to drive and it's sure to impress the neighbours, but at the end of the day, you've got a 15 year old car that will need lots of TLC to keep it rolling. Be as proactive as you can.
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Old 09-23-2014, 10:12 AM   #4
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I think your issue is deeper than the car itself. The problem from what you posted so far seems more like someone with not enough knowledge of these cars attempted to fix it to sell (your mechanic). Now all sorts of problems, the ones you know of and the ones you may not know, are popping up.
My 2001 S has been bullet proof and if you get it in the hands of people that know these cars well, you will have no issues in most cases, especially if you take the proactive approach and replace stuff before anything happens. Good examples are replacing the IMS bearing every time the clutch is replaced, get the better water pump/thermostat and so on.
I would start looking for a good independent mechanic in your area. Many people here I bet can recommend you one.

CR
I definitely think you're right. I trust the mechanic to some degree. He specializes in Mercedes, BMW and Audi, sometimes Porsche. But he's certified in only Mercedes. That's why I'm thinking he may not know all too much about the engine. I liked him since he would do repairs for me at a cheaper price or even free. But I don't want to shell out a ton of money on constant repairs for this car over the next few years. There's a company Porsche dealership that I pass on my way to work that I think I'll take my car to and have them do a complete check and let me know what all needs to be repaired.

I still have all of the repair receipts from the 3 previous owners so I have an idea on what's new, what's not and what needs to be replaced. My I'm about to hit the 100K milestone on this car so I think I'll be bringing it in around that time for a full check-up.
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Old 09-23-2014, 11:39 AM   #5
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But I don't want to shell out a ton of money on constant repairs for this car over the next few years.
With a Porsche that is 15 yrs old and has 100,000 miles, you need to plan on spending $2,000 per year for repairs and maintanence. Some owners will spend less and some will spend more but that $2K per year is a pretty good number to plan for.
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Old 09-23-2014, 11:44 AM   #6
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With a Porsche that is 15 yrs old and has 100,000 miles, you need to plan on spending $2,000 per year for repairs and maintanence. Some owners will spend less and some will spend more but that $2K per year is a pretty good number to plan for.
I can understand $2K a year, I don't have a problem with $2K a year, I just have a problem with spending an estimated $2K on repairs in the first month of owning the car. I know it's not a newer Porsche and it's definitely an older model, I'm just more bummed in getting a car with problems from the get-go when I was told they're weren't any. I plan to get them fixed sometime within the next year, once I have enough saved up to be able to do all the repairs needed on it.
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Old 09-23-2014, 12:02 PM   #7
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I feel you. My Boxster has been just a nightmare to keep on the road, and I understand your feelings about wondering if it's worth it to keep. In the first 2 years that I owned my car I did the air oil separator, water tank, starter, IMS and RMS, cooling fans and the fuel pump. I also just had a ROW M030 suspension installed because one of the shocks was totally blown. My car has 124K... I have put about 25K on it.

Getting it to a good shop is key. Ask around with the local PCA in your area. Some porsche shops are much better at dealing with the M96 engines than others.

Good luck!
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Old 09-23-2014, 12:07 PM   #8
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I can understand $2K a year, I don't have a problem with $2K a year, I just have a problem with spending an estimated $2K on repairs in the first month of owning the car.
This is completely normal (to spend most of the first years' $2K right away). You are in the process of fixing everyhing that the previous owner ignored - otherwise known as "deferred maintenance".

Once you get it straightened out, you should have a fairly long period of smooth sailing. Hang in there!
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Old 09-23-2014, 12:11 PM   #9
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I feel you. My Boxster has been just a nightmare to keep on the road, and I understand your feelings about wondering if it's worth it to keep. In the first 2 years that I owned my car I did the air oil separator, water tank, starter, IMS and RMS, cooling fans and the fuel pump. I also just had a ROW M030 suspension installed because one of the shocks was totally blown. My car has 124K... I have put about 25K on it.

Getting it to a good shop is key. Ask around with the local PCA in your area. Some porsche shops are much better at dealing with the M96 engines than others.

Good luck!
most of those repairs are typical after 10 years or ~70-100K miles depending on the condition of the roads and if you drive the car in year round extremes of hot or cold weather.

Rule #1 of buying a Porsche is unless it's very low mileage and fairly new, you MUST have a qualified Porsche mechanic inspect it to determine what needs repair so that you can give the car in its present state a proper valuation. Then you need to account for these common Boxster/Carrera repairs many of which will show no signs of needed attention during the inspection, you have to go by mileage and assume that many original parts are hitting their sell by date.

If you jump into one of these cars without inspecting it and go strictly off the mileage and overall appearance you are basically paying the seller's price and leaving no room whatsoever for these common Boxster repairs.
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Old 09-23-2014, 12:42 PM   #10
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For a Boxster, those are normal repairs...

But, compared to my previous Porsches. It's been pretty bad. It seems like so many things that you have to replace on a Boxster are due to poor design. Water tank, RMS, IMS... I will let the AOS slide, but the rest should have been better designed.

Never had to replace any thing like that in my 911 or 951.
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Old 09-23-2014, 12:52 PM   #11
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most of those repairs are typical after 10 years or ~70-100K miles depending on the condition of the roads and if you drive the car in year round extremes of hot or cold weather.

Rule #1 of buying a Porsche is unless it's very low mileage and fairly new, you MUST have a qualified Porsche mechanic inspect it to determine what needs repair so that you can give the car in its present state a proper valuation. Then you need to account for these common Boxster/Carrera repairs many of which will show no signs of needed attention during the inspection, you have to go by mileage and assume that many original parts are hitting their sell by date.

If you jump into one of these cars without inspecting it and go strictly off the mileage and overall appearance you are basically paying the seller's price and leaving no room whatsoever for these common Boxster repairs.
Good advice!! And advice I followed to the letter. I left myself a $5k buffer for unexpected but typical repairs after purchase of the car! So far I have only had to do the water pump and the coolant cap. But know that clutch,IMS and RMS will be done in the spring. Number 1 priority for OP, is a good indy!
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Old 09-23-2014, 08:58 PM   #12
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i spent 50% of my car's value in "voluntary" & "involuntary" repairs .... within the 1st 6 months of ownership .... (2001 boxster base)

yeah ... total PITA .... but once everything's done .... man, love the car to bits. its the perfect balance for good fun ... when you just wanna do a fast, easy and stress free drive. @crod should agree
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Old 09-23-2014, 09:40 PM   #13
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Don't mean to hijack but

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Originally Posted by FormulaReed View Post
I feel you. My Boxster has been just a nightmare to keep on the road, and I understand your feelings about wondering if it's worth it to keep. In the first 2 years that I owned my car I did the air oil separator, water tank, starter, IMS and RMS, cooling fans and the fuel pump. I also just had a ROW M030 suspension installed because one of the shocks was totally blown. My car has 124K... I have put about 25K on it.

Getting it to a good shop is key. Ask around with the local PCA in your area. Some porsche shops are much better at dealing with the M96 engines than others.

Good luck!
Who do you recommend in the Seattle area? I just turned 90k on my '03 base and it's time for a check up. I know the CV boots need replacement and possibly my water pump.
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Old 09-24-2014, 06:20 AM   #14
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My first choice is Autowerks NW. Leif is great, but his shop is way out in Woodinville.

I had Auto Services West install the M030 kit and I was happy with the work. They are over in West Seattle.

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