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gnetwerker

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About gnetwerker

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    Contributing Member

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    Male

Profile Fields

  • From
    PNW
  • Porsche Club
    PCA (Porsche Club of America)
  • Present cars
    2004 996 C4s Cab
    1957 356 Speedster
    1960 356 Roadster
  • Former cars
    2001 Boxster S
  1. I'm going to bump this, with a slightly different question: I am looking at moving from a 2004 C4S Cab (996, 86k miles, manual, Bose) to a 2012 C Cab (12k miles, manual, sport chrono). I've really liked the C4S, but it is getting long in the tooth and expensive to maintain. Specifically regarding handling -- and handling on wet roads -- how much of a change will this be. Not worried about raw BHP, not worried about PSE. A little worried about no upgraded sound system. Any opinions (other than the above)? The other option is to continue looking for a manual 997.2 C4S Cab with a manual, which are rare and expensive.
  2. C4S Head Gasket

    OK, thanks for the input, I'll explore this further. The coolant level in the tank dropped severely. Don't (yet) know if there is any coolant in the oil or vice versa -- that's the next thing to look at. I trust this mechanic, but I'll talk to them again about it and explore some more. Being able to say to the SO that I **really** need to upgrade to a 991 had a certain amount of native appeal, however. OTOH, manual transmission 991 C4S Cabs are as scarce as hen's teeth.
  3. C4S Head Gasket

    No record of previous engine work. Did the IMS bearing thing a while ago, and it wouldn't take the new bearing but did take the increased lube alternative.
  4. I took my C4S (about 85k miles) into the shop the other day, and my mechanic noted that there was some (not a lot) coolant weeping from the head gasket. He said it would probably self-seal, but suggested that I might want to look toward upgrading to a 997.2 or a 991. Any commentary on whether it is ever worthwhile (financially) to grin and bear this repair bill, sell the car, or take some other path?
  5. It is the time of year when I put the hardtop on my '94 C4S cab, a fraught experience every year because I need to ask my wife to help me lift it on, and she is perennially (and correctly) afraid of dropping it, which if it happened would cause a serious rift in our relationship. All went well this year, and we had the top on and I went to get the hex tool to tighten the bayonets down at the rear. I normally keep the tool in the front trunk. The trunk wouldn't open -- I didn't even get a solenoid sound. The car started fine, so it wasn't the battery, but I tried the jump-start posts on the fuse box anyway, to no effect. Also, the rear trunk lid worked fine. At this stage I should have just gotten a hex tool from the basement and tightened the bayonets, but that would have been too easy. I took off the front passenger (right) side wheel cover and fished around for the secret trunk release, to no avail -- I didn't know what I was looking for, and in any case didn't find it. So I drove down to my local Porsche guys (slowly, with the top not locked down!), and Andy there tried himself for a good half-hour to diagnose the problem. The fact that there wasn't even a sound from the trunk solenoid, combined with a fact I had left out -- the remote locking system had been (intermittently) not working for some time. He thought it might be one of the on-board computers, as he noticed the alarm wasn't arming either, and he hooked up his magic laptop. But that wasn't it either. Finally he found the emergency release wire, which was jammed, but got it loose a little, the solenoid started working and the trunk opened. As it happened, I had a body shop put a new front bumper cover on the car a month or two earlier. It seems that they improperly routed the emergency trunk release wire and it jammed the trunk release (intermittently). When it was in a certain state, the car thought the trunk was open and wouldn't lock, arm the alarm, or do other things. Once the jammed wire was free, everything worked. I probably need to take the car back to the body shop and have them re-route that wire so it doesn't happen again, but I thought I'd mention this odd situation for others' benefit.
  6. I was in the same situation, and after a bad experience with Sunset Porsche, I won't do business with them anymore. I found keys on eBay (with the serial number tags) for @ $140, and had a local specialty locksmith come and do the programming, which cost another $100-$150 (don't remember exactly). We swapped the blades into new heads, obviously. I was originally told that only the dealer could do the reprogramming, but this is not correct, there are quite a number of places that will do it in most major metro areas. As noted, it is the car that needs to be programmed to accept the key, not the other way around.
  7. (I posted this in the "High Miles" thread, but since 75k isn't so high mileage anymore, perhaps no one has seen it. Trying again at the top level). My trusty 2004 C4S Cab has just reached 75k miles. It's a daily driver, but I don't drive a great deal. I've had it since about 40k mi in late 2010. I'm going to throw some money at it, and I'm wondering what advice about preventive maintenance everyone has. I'm planning on replacing the IMS with the LNE one, and I guess the RMS in the process, along with the clutch (though it doesn't need one). I'm going to do a full service, with all new fluids. It had a brake job about 10k miles ago, so it doesn't need that, and its had both rear wheel bearings replaced about 20k mi ago, so it doesn't need that either. I'm replacing the headlights, which are yellowed beyond salvage (already have the new ones). Other than some buff-and-polish for the exterior, I'm also replacing the (sacrificial) spoiler lip below the front fender, which is in pretty bad shape. Other than this, what advice do y'all have for what to do here?
  8. My 2004 C4S Cab just turned 75k -- not "high mileage" anymore in this forum, but thought I would ask about what PM should be done at this stage. I'm planning on getting the IMS done, and putting in a new clutch while I'm at it (it doesn't need one, but since the engine will be out anyway ...) Any suggestions on what else to have done for this milestone?
  9. Yeah, found some pristine ones for @ $1100, so that's why I was checking.
  10. I've looked here, in the Porsche parts catalog, and elsewhere, and cannot get a good answer on the part number for replacement headlamp assembly for a 2004 C4S cab. Some parts pickers seem to indicate that the part 996.631.060.20 (996.631.059.20 for the other side) is compatible, some don't. I have Bi-Xenons in there now (option M601), and want to replace my UV-damaged lamps (beyond full restoration) with new ones. I must say there is a lot of confusion in the world about 996 headlamps.
  11. 996 Electric Drain

    I'll throw this in for good measure (all the advice about is good as well). I had persistent battery problems on my 2004 996 C4S for about 2 years. I bought a Battery Minder, checked for current draws, etc -- and still had problems. In the end I left it with my favorite mechanic for about a week and he figured out that the alternator was weak, and the battery wasn't fully charging when I drove it. He replaced that and all my problems went away. Persistent under-charging will damage your battery, and I went through three in a three-year period. This may or may not be what is going on with you.
  12. I went through this a few years ago with my boxster, and ended up in a C4S, so I'm not complaining. First, in every state that I'm aware of, you have the right to have your car repaired at the shop of your choice. Once they've agreed that it's not a total loss, you should have it towed to the nearest Porsche dealer or high-end repair shop and have them do it. They will almost certainly offer a warranty. If the car comes out of the process not to your satisfaction, then drive it to the next nearest Porsche dealer and trade it in. Since it is repairable, you won't get a salvage title, and the car will retain most of its value. However, you may also be able to make a "diminished value" claim for any residual impact. Your other option is to take the cash for the repair estimate and the car, and sell the car as-is, and buy something new. In your case I doubt that is a better deal, but you may have an uncomfortable feeling about this car -- it happens often after people have been in accidents. If you assiduously list all of the after-market stuff on the car, they'll take that into account for the repair or total loss calculations. However, in my case, I had to challenge the initial total loss assessment and get an independent adjuster, who upped the total loss value of my car by over 50%. This is also a right you have in most states. You may want to get on the phone to your state's insurance division and ask for some advice.
  13. Unless there has been a change in the last few years, it takes more than the diagnostic computer to program the car (not the key). PCNA maintains a data base of car codes and access to this database is required when programming the car to accept a new key head. Not really. The code comes on a little card with the key head (and should be saved by the owner for this purpose). If you have this, then what wross996TT said holds true and all you need is a PST2/PIWIS. if this can be confirmed (no offense, Silver), it would save me ~ 6 hours of driving to Tacoma and back, not that I don't like driving my C4S, but I-5 in February is no treat for anyone. When I asked my trusted mechanic about the keys, they said they couldn't do it, but I didn't have the new heads then, so I may not have asked the right question.
  14. I drive a 2004 911 C4S Cabrio. There are three Porsche dealers within a few hundred miles of me: Sunset (Beaverton, OR), Larson Porsche (Tacoma, WA), and Carrera Motors (Bend, OR). I am in Portland, but refuse to take my car to Sunset Porsche anymore (see bonus rant, below). Both of my remote key fobs have been dead for about a year now (more in a sec), and I'm sick of it. I bought new heads for them, but I need to have them programmed. Can anyone weight in on Larson (my first choice, 2.25 hours away), or Carrera (3 hours away)? Speed, non-price-gougey-ness, etc? (I have a Porsche mechanic that I absolutely love: Heckmann & Thiemann here in Portland. Those guys are a dream. Their lead mechanic, Andy, can fix anything. He found a longstanding batter-deterioration problem for me, finally tracking it down to a starter that was pulling way more amps than it should have -- not a problem with a fully-charged battery, but constantly leading to starting problems when the battery was a little weak, e.g. after sitting a while.) But no one but a dealer can re-program keys, as I understand it. Bonus rant: I took my car into the Beaverton dealer. I spoke with the service manager in advance to ensure that if I needed a new keyhead, that they had them in stock. He said "sure". I made sure he knew that I could only spend an hour waiting, and if it would be longer, I needed to go, either in a loaner or in public transit. He said "no problem". I also had a problem with the tension wire in the soft-top, and I asked if they could repair that in the time allotted, and he said "Maybe". That's fine, I get it. I ask him what the keyheads cost, saying I had heard that they were very expensive at the dealer -- about $240 each. He says "$140", which is what I can get them on eBay for, so I say "Great!". So I go in and give him the car, 15 mins early, in fact. I re-explain I need to leave in about an hour, give him the keys, and go sit in the waiting area. An hour passes, and then another 15 mins (I was early), and I get up to look for him -- he's no where to be found. I sit back down, as I don't want him looking for me there when I'm away. More time passes, I look for him again -- nowhere. Finally, twenty minutes after my deadline elapsed (and an hour-and-a-half after my arrival), as I'm calling to cancel my next appointment, the service manager shows up and tells me what I knew: one of my keyheads works (with a brand-new battery), and one doesn't. Do I want to order new keyheads? "Well, you said you had them!" say I. No, they don't have them. And furthermore, they're not $140, they're $185, plus another $80-$100 to reprogram then (each, apparently), so he's actually exceeded the price I'd heard. I was not happy, but said, "Fine, go ahead and order them" even though this will mean another drive out to Beaver-ville and another wait. Sigh. What about the cabrio top? Well, yes, it's the tension wire (like I told them, having looked it up here on RennTech first), and it will be $700 per side to replace the tension wire. WTF!! I say "you must be kidding", and he says no. I tell him I'll sort that out on my own, can I please have my car because I'm running late, and he says he's going to get it. I sit down again. While I'm sitting I look up the part number for the cabrio top tension wires. They're available for about $18 each online. Sure, I know labor costs something, but $700??? Five minutes pass, and then ten, and then 15. I walk over to his desk, and again there is no one there. I wait a bit longer, and then ask someone for him. He's gone to lunch. They don't know where my keys are, can I wait until he returns -- in an hour. At this point I completely lose my cool and tell them that I want my car, and I want it now, and what do you mean the service manager left for lunch while I was waiting for him to return my car! I was pissed off almost beyond words. They said "Well, he hasn't closed out your ticket" and I said it would be a cold day in hell before I ever set foot in that dealership again, give me my car. They tracked down the keys and I left. I wrote a letter to the General Manager of Sunset Porsche, and copied it to PCNA. I got a call from the National Service Manager from PCNA a couple of days later, but I never heard a single word from Sunset. So I bought a couple of OEM keyheads on eBay, and I'm looking forward to a drive to Tacoma (?) to have them programmed. Sigh. I would advise anyone listening to avoid Sunset Porsche of Beaverton at any cost, even if it involves driving to Tacoma or Bend for dealer service. Use Heckmann or the German auto place in NE Portland for out-of-warranty and other non-dealer service. P.s. - I just discovered that Sunset gives members here a discount. Hmph. I still say boycott them.
  15. The photo below shows the problem I'm having. On the passenger side of the car only, the fabric of the top has pulled back from the frame. I've examined it closely and compared it to the other side, and cannot for the life of me see a difference, whether closed or half-open. While it is getting to the time of year I put on the hard top, I'd hate to waste these last few weeks of top-down driving weather. The top opens and closes fine, the hydraulics are fine, and there are no error codes. Any ideas on how to diagnose this?
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