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Old 02-28-2016, 04:34 PM   #1
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Just Bought My First Boxster - Intro and Newbie Questions

I just bought my first Boxster and I am thrilled with it! I've owned a few old VW's and 914s, but this is my first "modern" (it's a 1999) fun car.

The car is in pretty great shape considering it's age, but there are a few annoying things right off the bat I would like some advice on.

1) The key won't lock or unlock the doors....at all. The LED light comes on on the remote, but doesn't do anything. Plus, it's really strange that turning the key in the door lock doesn't do anything either.

2) The back window vinyl was replaced by some genius PO with material that you can't see out of. Looks like they just sewed it in. Would it be advisable to remove this and replace it with something I can actually see through, or should I buy a complete replacement top with good vinyl (I see they may be cheaper than getting mine fixed)?

Thanks in advance for all the help.


Last edited by VWTortuga336; 02-28-2016 at 04:47 PM.
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Old 02-28-2016, 04:48 PM   #2
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Old 02-28-2016, 06:31 PM   #3
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Nice areo kit. Looks sharp.

For the lock, the immobilizer (under driver's seat) may have been wet before. It controls locks. Common problem.

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Old 02-28-2016, 07:21 PM   #4
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Welcome and great looking car!

Lots of options with the top. You might be able to have a new vinyl window sewn in or you can replace with a new top with either vinyl or glass window. Many upgrade to the glass window to keep it clear forever but the glass window is smaller.

Do a search on tops and you'll find a lot of info that has already been posted.
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Old 02-28-2016, 07:23 PM   #5
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Treat yourself to a top with glass rear window! I love mine.
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Old 02-29-2016, 05:17 AM   #6
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You can find a top with glass installed on the frame for around 500$and it takes 30 minutes to swap the frame. These tops last a long time so buying used is not an issue
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Old 02-29-2016, 05:25 AM   #7
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Could also be a way to retrofit the heated glass too?
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Old 02-29-2016, 06:13 AM   #8
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Could also be a way to retrofit the heated glass too?
Yes, best thing I did. Buy from Auto Tops Direct, same as a GAHH top(same company as far as I can tell). About $1100 installed. I bought mine from their eBay site.

Porsche Boxster Glass Window Replacements and Upgrades
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Old 02-29-2016, 06:18 AM   #9
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Originally Posted by VWTortuga336 View Post
Plus, it's really strange that turning the key in the door lock doesn't do anything either.
That is not normal. There is something wrong with the door mechanism. Door should open and close with key.

Regards, Markus
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Old 02-29-2016, 11:07 AM   #10
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So now I just got error code P0128. Looks like it's a thermostat stuck open issue. From what I've read, I need to replace the thermostat, correct?

If so, is that a DIY job? I have some experience working on cars, justnot a Boxster.

Also, is it OK to drive with this error short term?
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Old 02-29-2016, 12:29 PM   #11
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Thermostat and WP are easy DYI's.

Before starting, I'd clear the code and see if it comes back anytime soon.
In the mean time, keep an eye on coolant level puddle under car and engine temp!
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Old 02-29-2016, 05:17 PM   #12
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If you have access to a durametric cable, run any codes you can off of it. 986 boxsters usually route the DME communication through the immobilizer. If the immobilizer is shot, the DME won't be able to be connected to. Another way you can check is to check around the immobilizer (underneath driver's side seat) and look for evidence of water. If you're still not convinced, disconnect it, and take the plastic housing apart and examine the circuits, if they look good, it's not the immobilizer at fault.

Thermostat and coolant replacement can be found at Pelican Parts in a coolant flush article. It's not the thermostat itself, but it'll show you the locations of most of the hoses and the routing.
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Old 03-01-2016, 04:41 AM   #13
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I can still lock and unlock the doors from inside the car with the lock button.
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Old 03-01-2016, 05:13 AM   #14
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Newbie question regarding stereo

I am also a newbie and have not taken possession of my car (2003 Boxster S). I have been researching options for connecting an mp3 player or phone to the stereo, and I'm starting to think that an FM transmitter with bluetooth could be my best/least expensive/easiest option (other than replacing the whole stereo)? I was wondering if anyone has experience with this? We have a four hour drive home, the car does not have a CD changer, and I don't want to go back to the days of carrying multiple CDs in the car. Is something that plugs into a DC slot the same as plugging something into the cigarette lighter of the Boxster? Any advice or suggestions would be appreciated.

This is what I'm looking at: http://www.amazon.com/Nulaxy-Wireless-Bluetooth-Transmitter-Smartphones/dp/B018E0I01I/ref=sr_1_3?s=mp3&ie=UTF8&qid=1456840358&sr=1-3#Ask
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Old 03-01-2016, 06:15 AM   #15
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Originally Posted by XLR8URLYF View Post
I am also a newbie and have not taken possession of my car (2003 Boxster S). I have been researching options for connecting an mp3 player or phone to the stereo, and I'm starting to think that an FM transmitter with bluetooth could be my best/least expensive/easiest option (other than replacing the whole stereo)? I was wondering if anyone has experience with this? We have a four hour drive home, the car does not have a CD changer, and I don't want to go back to the days of carrying multiple CDs in the car. Is something that plugs into a DC slot the same as plugging something into the cigarette lighter of the Boxster? Any advice or suggestions would be appreciated.

This is what I'm looking at: http://www.amazon.com/Nulaxy-Wireless-Bluetooth-Transmitter-Smartphones/dp/B018E0I01I/ref=sr_1_3?s=mp3&ie=UTF8&qid=1456840358&sr=1-3#Ask
Yes bluetooth FM transmitter is your best option for simplicity. Here is what I have (I also have an 03S, not that it matters).

Amazon.com: GOgroove FlexSMART X2 Bluetooth In-Car FM Transmitter with USB Charging , Multipoint , Music Controls & Hands-Free Calling - Works with Apple , Samsung , LG & More Smartphones , Tablets , MP3 Players: Car Electronics

This is the second one I tried. The first had a humming noise and didnít work as well. So far this one has been good. You are not going to get great sound out of the stock stereo anyway, so the bluetooth / FM loss is not that big of a deal. Usually sounds decent. It also has forward, back and play / pause buttons as well which I use a lot when playing / streaming through my phone. Another thing to keep in mind is the dc outlet is not switched off on the box when you switch off the car, and this one has a little power button on the end of the base which you can easily push to turn the unit off when you are leaving the car. This is a must unless you want to have to pull the unit out of the dc adapter, which would not be good. And the unit is pretty bright so you usually wonít have a problem forgetting to turn it off when you get out of the car. It also has a USB port which I use to plug my iPhone charger into (the one you are looking at also has), so I can charge my phone while streaming music and/or using it for navigation. Can obviously also take calls over the bluetooth adapter as well.

FYI, I also have one of these which I use to hold my phone. It works really well in the top left vent on the center console on the box.

Amazon.com: Kenu Airframe | Portable Smartphone Car Mount (Non Phablets) | Black: Cell Phones & Accessories

Good luck!
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Old 03-01-2016, 09:37 AM   #16
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Yes bluetooth FM transmitter is your best option for simplicity. Here is what I have (I also have an 03S, not that it matters).

Amazon.com: GOgroove FlexSMART X2 Bluetooth In-Car FM Transmitter with USB Charging , Multipoint , Music Controls & Hands-Free Calling - Works with Apple , Samsung , LG & More Smartphones , Tablets , MP3 Players: Car Electronics

This is the second one I tried. The first had a humming noise and didnít work as well. So far this one has been good. You are not going to get great sound out of the stock stereo anyway, so the bluetooth / FM loss is not that big of a deal. Usually sounds decent. It also has forward, back and play / pause buttons as well which I use a lot when playing / streaming through my phone. Another thing to keep in mind is the dc outlet is not switched off on the box when you switch off the car, and this one has a little power button on the end of the base which you can easily push to turn the unit off when you are leaving the car. This is a must unless you want to have to pull the unit out of the dc adapter, which would not be good. And the unit is pretty bright so you usually wonít have a problem forgetting to turn it off when you get out of the car. It also has a USB port which I use to plug my iPhone charger into (the one you are looking at also has), so I can charge my phone while streaming music and/or using it for navigation. Can obviously also take calls over the bluetooth adapter as well.

FYI, I also have one of these which I use to hold my phone. It works really well in the top left vent on the center console on the box.

Amazon.com: Kenu Airframe | Portable Smartphone Car Mount (Non Phablets) | Black: Cell Phones & Accessories

Good luck!
Thanks so much for the detailed answer. Great info!
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Old 03-05-2016, 03:58 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by XLR8URLYF View Post
I am also a newbie and have not taken possession of my car (2003 Boxster S). I have been researching options for connecting an mp3 player or phone to the stereo, and I'm starting to think that an FM transmitter with bluetooth could be my best/least expensive/easiest option (other than replacing the whole stereo)? I was wondering if anyone has experience with this? We have a four hour drive home, the car does not have a CD changer, and I don't want to go back to the days of carrying multiple CDs in the car. Is something that plugs into a DC slot the same as plugging something into the cigarette lighter of the Boxster? Any advice or suggestions would be appreciated.

This is what I'm looking at: Amazon.com : Nulaxy Wireless In-Car Bluetooth FM Transmitter Radio Adapter Car Kit W 1.44 Inch Display Supports TF/SD Card and USB Car Charger for All Smartphones Audio Players : MP3 Players & Accessories
Mine had the CD changer and I installed the RCA to 1/8 plug for my Ipod. Then you install a CD in the CD player and all you have to do is select CD player and the MP3 player will come thru.

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