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Old 02-07-2020, 10:27 PM   #1
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Thoughts on leaky Boxster?

Hi guys.

Thereís a Boxster local to me that the owner is listing as a mechanic special. It runs and drives, the price is very right, but it has a slight oil problem.

According to the owner, it is leaking oil from the left valve cover onto the exhaust manifold where smoke is being created.

This seems like not too hard of a fix. Can I get some thoughts and ideas?

Again, tools, a lift, and time I have in spades. Skill and experience? Maybe not as much, but Iíve done some light maintenance on a 330i.

Thanks guys.

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Old 02-08-2020, 06:02 AM   #2
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Though I've never experienced it personally, this is a common enough problem that there are threads on this forum about what happens if you use to much sealant when you put it back together, haha.

Don't be like mayhem: don't use too much sealant.

But if you can confirm that's where the leak originates, it shouldn't be a difficult repair.
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Old 02-08-2020, 06:53 AM   #3
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What I've found on most of the Boxsters that leaked oil near the head is that the spark plug tube o-rings needed to be replaced.
Here's a thread with some discussion and details: http://986forum.com/forums/diy-project-guides/52150-spark-plug-tubes.html

Here's how the leak looked on my current project:


It's not very difficult to DIY, parts are cheap, and it is a great time to change the spark plugs as well. This is a very common problem on 1997 - 2002 cars. Later cars have metal tubes integrated into the cover.

There are other things that leak, but this is what I'd look at first. Leaks from the mating surface of the cover are pretty rare.
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Old 02-08-2020, 09:09 AM   #4
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2nd the spark plug tubes, common leak and an easy cheap fix.
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Old 02-08-2020, 10:00 AM   #5
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Okay, so the guy just told me the car isnít driveable. Likely due to it not holding oil because itís leaking so bad. I just asked him.

Does that change any of your diagnoses?

Itís a really great price ~$2k. Iím just worried that Iíd be buying a dud that I wouldnít be able to fix, and parting out might be a bit difficult if the big ticket item, the engine, doesnít work right.

Thoughts again? Thanks guys.
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Old 02-08-2020, 10:12 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Russdawg1 View Post
Okay, so the guy just told me the car isnít driveable. Likely due to it not holding oil because itís leaking so bad. I just asked him.

Does that change any of your diagnoses? ...
The spark plug tubes would have to be broken or the o-ring missing to be *that* bad. The car may still just need a simple fix, or it could be good for parts only. I'd say to take a look if it's nearby, but pass on buying it unless you can get it for much less than the asking price, or if it looks Very good other than the engine issue.

Do you have anyone local who knows these cars well that could do a pre-purchase inspection? I'm not talking about paying a shop $350 to look at a $2,000 car, but friend of a friend who has actually worked on a 986/996?
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Old 02-08-2020, 12:50 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by 78F350 View Post
Do you have anyone local who knows these cars well that could do a pre-purchase inspection? I'm not talking about paying a shop $350 to look at a $2,000 car, but friend of a friend who has actually worked on a 986/996?

Unfortunately no. Looks like Iíll just pass on this one. Patience is key! A white Boxster S will eventually pop up for the right price right?

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