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Bill_SoCal

2003 with 146,000 Miles - Sad Day

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Well...I drove to my office this morning and on the way home my '03 started to idle a little rough. I started up the one lane highway home and felt some hesitation through the gears. I glanced back and noticed smoke (no idiot lights lighted on the dash). Within seconds after that a huge ball of smoke that limited visibility on the road. I'm honestly thankful that I didn't cause an accident due to limited visibility. Anyway, it was apparent this was not the morning I had expected and to add to that, I could just feel the $$$$$. Within a few minutes three fire trucks and an ambulance passed me. I thought a bad accident had occurred up the highway...no, someone had called in a car on fire and they were looking for me! The California Highway Patrol showed up moments later and stayed until my treasured Boxster was up on the flat bed and safely on its way to the dealer.

As I waited for AAA, I did check the coolant to see if I had blown a head gasket. Coolant level was fine. I pulled my oil dipstick...ut oh. All my oil went out in the smoke cloud. No indication of any oil at the bottom of the engine. I checked that once it was on the flatbed trailer.

In lieu of having the car dropped at my home, I had it sent to the dealer. This is obviously going to cost me an engine. This is the very first time I've ever had any, and I mean any, engine related issue. All I've done is regular maintenance. Drive belt at 60K and 120K. Nothing else...I've never even had the check engine light come on. I'm still driving with the original clutch (and yes, I drive it hard through the mountains and in the LA stop and go traffic each and every day). This has truly been the best and most reliable car I've ever owned.

Now that the vehicle is at the dealer, any thoughts on what a refurb engine or a rebuild is going to cost me? The car is too great of a car not to replace the engine. There is not a door ding or anything on the vehicle. The interior still looks like new.

I'm bummed. Appreciate any input on engine options.

Bill

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Sorry to hear, sounds like you got a fair bit of service life out of it. Here are some thoughts

1)dealer installed factory re-man, probably in the range of $12-15k

2)an engine from Mr Raby , and flat 6 innovations

3)used 03 engine, there are probably some very low mile examples out there, in the range of $2-6k

Good luck with the search and repair of your 986.

Regards

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What you described happened to me 9 months ago. I had the flat bed take my car to a local indy shop and they told me what I expected to hear that the motor had blown and it would be about 13K to replace. Having always wanted more power I decided to take the car home and put in a 3.4. I bought all the parts and started to disassemble the car. That's when I noticed that nothing the mechanic said he had done to diagnose the car had been touched. I pulled the intake and found the real problem. The air oil separator ( AOS) had in fact died not the motor. Cost 135-150 in parts and 30 minutes under the car. In the end I sued the local shop and filed a complaint with the local BB.

Long story short and I know its to late for that. If you did not have any harsh knocking sounds or worse yet lock up the problem might not be as horrifying as you think.

Good luck!

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What you described happened to me 9 months ago. I had the flat bed take my car to a local indy shop and they told me what I expected to hear that the motor had blown and it would be about 13K to replace. Having always wanted more power I decided to take the car home and put in a 3.4. I bought all the parts and started to disassemble the car. That's when I noticed that nothing the mechanic said he had done to diagnose the car had been touched. I pulled the intake and found the real problem. The air oil separator (AOS) had in fact died not the motor. Cost 135-150 in parts and 30 minutes under the car. In the end I sued the local shop and filed a complaint with the local BB.

Long story short and I know its to late for that. If you did not have any harsh knocking sounds or worse yet lock up the problem might not be as horrifying as you think.

Good luck!

This certainly gives me hope! I thought for sure the engine had to be gone (maybe not). Sorry to hear you had a bad experience when your car had an issue similar to this. It's unfortunate not all auto businesses have the ethics to do their due diligence. Places like that shouldn't be in business. I will call the dealer and recommend they check the AOS first. I have a really good dealer and I'm sure they'll do their best to get me back on the road. I do all my regular maintenance DIY...had I thought for a moment the engine was salvageable with something I could repair, I would have had the car towed to my home.

I actually had no knocks or any loud sounds...just billows of smoke and my car died.

Thanks very much! Keep you posted.

Bill :cheers:

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Sorry to hear, sounds like you got a fair bit of service life out of it. Here are some thoughts

1)dealer installed factory re-man, probably in the range of $12-15k

2)an engine from Mr Raby , and flat 6 innovations

3)used 03 engine, there are probably some very low mile examples out there, in the range of $2-6k

Good luck with the search and repair of your 986.

Regards

Really great input. Thanks. I would most likely look into option 3 if my engine is not repairable. I continue to hear about Raby - I need to check into these engines. I think option 1 is out for me.

I'll post an update when I hear back from the dealer on Monday.

Thanks again!

Bill

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Out of curiosity, how often did you change your engine oil? Such frequent driving plus stop and go traffic, i would say a change is needed every 3-5k miles, or every 6 months. Dealers say anywhere from 10k-15k miles before an engine oil service, which is preposterous..

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This is the AOS, huge smoke - very alarming but an easy fix, send Shiman a pm, he did his own swap out of the AOS and he claimes he is not mechanically competant.

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Was it a huge plume of white smoke? If so, sounds like the AOS to me too. As has been said, check for oil inside the throttle body.

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This is the AOS, huge smoke - very alarming but an easy fix, send Shiman a pm, he did his own swap out of the AOS and he claimes he is not mechanically competant.

Thanks! I really hope this is the issue. I have my car at the dealership about an hour away from my home. I'll let them take a look at it and depending on the repair cost, this may be something I'll tackle. I slept a little better last night knowing I may not have blown the engine. The last time this occurred when I was driving was when I was 18 or 19 years old ( a long time ago)...I had a bug with a 2276 and dual 48 IDA's...same situation, but the top of the #3 piston had a huge hole in it when I tore the engine down. Back then working on the engine was a little easier...disconnect the electrical, put a screw in the gas line, and undo the four 17mm bolts and drop it on to a skateboard. Good to go! I really haven't messed with the Boxster engine other than the air filter and oil changes. That's all it's ever needed. I've had other minor issues, but never the engine. The drive belt is incredibly easy. We'll see...if I end up doing the work myself, I'll definitely contact Shiman. Appreciate it.

All the best,

Bill

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Was it a huge plume of white smoke? If so, sounds like the AOS to me too. As has been said, check for oil inside the throttle body.

HUGE Richard. I'm hopeful this is the issue.

Thanks very much!

Bill

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Was it a huge plume of white smoke? If so, sounds like the AOS to me too. As has been said, check for oil inside the throttle body.

HUGE Richard. I'm hopeful this is the issue.

Thanks very much!

Bill

I'm not mechanically inclined, and did the AOS replacement myself following Mike Focke's instructions, lots of scraped knuckles and a long afternoon, but did it.

Hope that's what's wrong, and not major engine trouble.

Read below for diagnosis:

http://mike.focke.googlepages.com/airoilseparatorreplacement

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Was it a huge plume of white smoke? If so, sounds like the AOS to me too. As has been said, check for oil inside the throttle body.

HUGE Richard. I'm hopeful this is the issue.

Thanks very much!

Bill

I'm not mechanically inclined, and did the AOS replacement myself following Mike Focke's instructions, lots of scraped knuckles and a long afternoon, but did it.

Hope that's what's wrong, and not major engine trouble.

Read below for diagnosis:

http://mike.focke.googlepages.com/airoilseparatorreplacement

Sidenote: If I were to do it over, I'd pay a few hundred plus parts to have it done, rather then do it myself.

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Great news! First off, thanks for the great posts. This morning my dealership opened and had the first chance to look at my car since it was dropped off the back of the flatbed. At 8:30am, I received a call from the service manager at my local dealership (after he went through my litany of v-mails)…and what a relief it was. I was told the AOS has gone bad and nothing catastrophic has occurred to my vehicle regardless of how bad it seemed. I was actually reassured not to worry. Not a problem… My car was done and ready to go by 1pm today. I’m told after they ran it to burn off the excess oil; it’s running as strong as ever.

This visit is worth all of the $400 and some change that my dealer is charging me. As a matter of fact, I’m heading up to BevMo right now to pick up my service manager a nice bottle of Cab for taking such good care of my car. The repair price evening included all nine (9) quarts of oil I lost and a filter too. What a bargain.

I wasn’t available to pick up my car earlier. I’ll be there when the dealership opens at 7:30am. I can’t wait! While I don’t mind driving the ’06 Cayenne, there is nothing like my Boxster (and of course my wife doesn’t let me drive the Cayenne S – her Porsche).

Not bad…146,000 miles and this is the first engine related repair I’ve ever had.

Still the best car I’ve ever owned…

Thanks again for the positive posts and hope I hadn’t lost the engine.

All the best,

Bill :beer:

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:clapping: :cheers: :clapping: :thumbup: :clapping:

Regards, Maurice.

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Thats good news.. Better news than most hear with 146K on the clock!

We should talk before the big day does actually come...

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OUT-FREAKING-STANDING! :) Glad to hear it wasn't your engine. AND glad to hear you have a nice long time running engine :)

:cheers: :beer: :clapping: :beer: :cheers:

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This post eased my mind a little. I am a recently new owner of a 2000 Boxster 2.7L with 59K on it. I read all the doom and gloom of intermediate shaft failures and always wonder if one day I will have a blown engine. I knew that going in to the car, but something told me not to believe that it was a time bomb.

I wonder how many of these stories about blown engines really are simpler like your story.

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. I read all the doom and gloom of intermediate shaft failures and always wonder if one day I will have a blown engine.

I have successfully replaced three dual row IMS bearings as of yesterday.. We have found the tools and made a few that allow the dual row bearing to be removed!

LN Engineering has also made a silicon nitride ceramic bearing to replace the unit with as a complete drop in! This means that preventive IMS measures are now a reality..

BUT we are still very much in the development stages with this and would like to get 100 beta testers out there (with us installing the bearing) for at least two years prior to offering this as a "solution" to the IMS issue. Look for a step by step procedure on my site soon as a step by step pictorial.

I did this job in 6 hours yesterday, including R&R of the tranny, start to finish! One of the bearings I installed first has been in service for 3 months already.

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I've been following this post. Within 2 days you went from Sad to Glad!

Glad to hear all is well for you and your car.

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Great News Bill!!!!

The smoke from an AOS failure is temporarily heart stopping, as you (and I) have experienced, so the easy fix is great news, happy motoring!

Tony

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. I read all the doom and gloom of intermediate shaft failures and always wonder if one day I will have a blown engine.

I have successfully replaced three dual row IMS bearings as of yesterday.. We have found the tools and made a few that allow the dual row bearing to be removed!

LN Engineering has also made a silicon nitride ceramic bearing to replace the unit with as a complete drop in! This means that preventive IMS measures are now a reality..

BUT we are still very much in the development stages with this and would like to get 100 beta testers out there (with us installing the bearing) for at least two years prior to offering this as a "solution" to the IMS issue. Look for a step by step procedure on my site soon as a step by step pictorial.

I did this job in 6 hours yesterday, including R&R of the tranny, start to finish! One of the bearings I installed first has been in service for 3 months already.

I'm game and only a few hours away. Will this work for an 03 S?

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Great News Bill!!!!

The smoke from an AOS failure is temporarily heart stopping, as you (and I) have experienced, so the easy fix is great news, happy motoring!

Tony

Thanks again Tony! Car is running great! I run 60 miles each way to my office and back over a famous highway for motorcycle and automotive enthusiasts called the Ortega Highway. Nothing better than transversing that road in the Boxster.

All the best,

Bill :beer:

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I've been following this post. Within 2 days you went from Sad to Glad!

Glad to hear all is well for you and your car.

Thank you very much for the well wishes! I see you're from SoCal...what part?

All the best,

Bill :beer:

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