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Strange sound at idle

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The first time I heard it, I had the AC on and thought perhaps it was coming from the AC fan or something. The sound is kind of a "rumble" like you would think of a plastic fan making. My wife said "whirring noise" but I wouldn't call it a whir.

Anywho, it could be just some simple vibration and nothing to worry about, but my mind is wandering about the dreaded IMS bearing failure.

Can anyone ease my mind that this is not a symtom of a failing bearing and ultimately a catastrophically failing engine?

Thanks for the input.

2000 Boxster 2.7L

59,000 miles

5 Spd

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If it sounds like a vacuum cleaner than it's probably the secondary air injection pump. Otherwise remove the access panel behind the seats so you can gain access to the poly-rib belt. Then use a stethoscope or length of hose to listen to all of the pulleys individually. If it's not the air pump or a pulley than you may have a failing water pump. At any rate isolating the sound is paramount.

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Take a look at the same time for the engine room purge fan, in the engine room, visible in the right side air duct behind the passenger door. The fan comes on only when the engine room (environment) temperature is high.

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