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Old 11-04-2017, 07:52 AM   #1
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Electrical short?

Hi there!

First time posting here, and thought you all might have some insight for me!

I have a 1998 Boxster, and am not the first owner. It was well taken care of when I bought it, but in need of some repairs. Last year I had the electrical component of the ignition replaced.

Recently, I noticed that if I use the radio while driving, the car will "cut off" and seems to idle very low. I haven't run the radio in a while, and was having issues with dim/burned out headlights. I replaced the bulbs but when I re-installed the driver's side headlight, the entire handlamp no longer works. The fog lights that were working are now completely out. Passenger's side seems to be working fine.

My question is this: could the radio have caused some sort of short, or could the headlight be the cause of the problem? I'd like to have some clue about what might be happening before I take it to the shop to be fixed.

Any advice is most appreciated!

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Old 11-04-2017, 08:26 AM   #2
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You have an battery, alternator or voltage regulator issue. How old is your battery? Connections clean and tight?

Can you look at your battery voltage? It should be high 13's to 14Vdc when your car is running.
Voltage regulator is a common failure (diode failure) on Boxsters. Luckily, its a generic Bosch unit that runs about $50. It mounts on the back of your alternator and is an easy DYI. Just have to remove the alternator (lots of instructions on the forum).

You can have your charging system checked at any auto parts store.
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Old 11-04-2017, 08:26 AM   #3
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Your headlight isn't working because the connector at the rear isn't fully seated. Pull the headlight back out and make sure that the connector on the tray in the fender hasn't broken loose.

The radio shouldn't change the idle unless it's drawing a lot of power. Is it an aftermarket system?
Have your battery and alternator tested.
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Old 11-04-2017, 09:06 AM   #4
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Thank you! I will definitely check the alternator. The battery is just a couple of years old, and seems to be keeping a charge just fine.

I know it's possible the radio and headlight aren't related. It just seemed to happen all at the same time.

I'll also check the voltage regulator.

Thanks so much for the help!
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Old 11-04-2017, 09:08 AM   #5
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@particlewave:

The radio shouldn't change the idle unless it's drawing a lot of power. Is it an aftermarket system?

The radio (6 cd changer) is what was in the car when I bought it. I do think it might have been a replacement, but do not know how to determine that. I'd really like to replace it anyway with something that has bluetooth capabilities, but know that could pricey.

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