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2009 Turbo S Coolant Leak!

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Happy New year!!

I picked up an 09 Turbo S in November. Porsche Certified Pre-Owned. Full warranty until 2014. Full inspection at time of purchase, all codes checked. 10k miles. "Perfect Condition" supposedly.

I noticed a coolant odor within a week of picking it up. Talked to Porsche Service and they said there is a known issue with a coolant housing leaking. They booked it in the next morning. Picked it up that afternoon. Service report showed housing changed, new antifreeze and a factory PCM firmware update (unrelated service action). Got home and smelled coolant again. checked everywhere for leaks, nothing. Assumed it was residual coolant evaporating off after service work. Fingers crossed, off to the coast for Christmas, 1000 miles each way!

Minor whiffs of coolant throughout trip. No visible leaks or driveway staining. Truck ran like a champ.

Driving home today 300 miles from home in the middle of the mountains, "Low Coolant Warning" comes on. Great!!. Stop at gas station at the top of the deserted mountain pass and buy Shell premixed coolant (nice). Dig around under hood to find coolant reservoir filler and it takes 2 quarts to fill it. Again runs like a champ the rest of the way home.

I was under the impression that all coolant issues had been resolved on the Gen 2 Cayennes....obviously not.

Does anyone have any more detailed info on the nature of the coolant leak and housing issue on 09 Turbos? Is this a difficult repair prone to mis-assembly, O-ring pinch or what ever? Back to the dealer on Monday.

Thanks in advance. I'll let you know what they find.

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Interesting. The Porsche service manager said it was a known issue. I plan to call first thing tomorrow morning and get it in. I will update with results ASAP. I will advise them that I was forced to use Shell coolant. Thanks for the responses.

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From Porsche52 on Rennlist:

You have a coolant leak! its just not hitting the ground yet. The plastic coupler from the water pump to thermostate housing leaks on just about every 08 and early 09 V-8 pigs. Coolant collects in the vally under the intake. There is only 1 plastic coolant tube under the intake on the 2nd gen DFI engines. Have seen only a couple leak from that tube. Completely different design than the 1st gen cayenne. I would say 99% of the time it is the plastic coupler. They came with x o-rings from the factory, now we are installing new couplers with proper round o-rings. There is a special lubricant from the father land that must be mixed 50-50 with water for the o-rings. Go figure. We were seeing cars straight of the truck from germany with coolant leaks from this coupler. The new round o-rings have been very good.

This is some info on the coolant leak.

Vehicle Type: Cayenne S/GTS/Turbo/Turbo S

Model Year: As of 2008

Concern: Coolant leak from the coolant regulator housing

Information: When carrying out work on the coolant regulator housing that involves removing the intake socket, labled "A" in image, the previously used assembly grease must no longer be used when installing the replacement intake socket. The reason for this change is that if too much assembly grease is used on the sealing rings during installation, the sealing rings may become deformed when the intake socket is installed and therefore may not seal properly. If a complaint of coolant leak from this intake socket is received, replace the intake socket with948.106.101.02 which is fitted with upgraded round sealing rings.

Action Required: Use assembly gel as the assembly grease for the intake socket.

Information! The amount of gel required for fitting must be diluted with water (50:50).

Parts Info: -> Grease (assembly gel, 100g tube)

948.106.101.02 -> Intake socket, round sealing rings

Me earlier today:

Just dropped off my 09 Turbo S (12k miles) for the second attempt at fixing the coolant leak. The first attempt Work Order from Dec 17th indicates:

948-106-101-03 Intake Socket

000-043-301-05 Antifreeze

948-106-533-00 Sealing, W (truncated I think)

Any idea what the last item is? Doesn't match the parts listed above.

I should get it back later today. I'll post results.



So the dealer called at 2pm. He said they re-did the repair and the truck was ready to go. They apparently pinched the o-ring on installation of the new intake socket first time round. So they replaced the whole piece again along with new antifreeze. They said the water pump and plastic line were fine.

I put about 20 miles on it and brought it home. I had a close look (and smell) under the hood in the garage. No indication of more leaks at this time. The exact same parts were used this time as was used last. (As indicated in my first post)

I hope it holds up. Porsche52's comments give me comfort. Pig Whisperer / Cayenne Grief Counsellor....too funny.

Unrelated: I also asked them about what I percieved to be excessive power steering pump whine. They said it was normal and another one in the shop was similar, so I guess I'm satisfied.

I will keep you posted if anything piles up.

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  • 3 years later...

Has anyone else run into this issue? My 2008 CTT has had the seals around the coolant reservoir replaced and a leak repaired under the intake manifold. The smell went away for a few weeks but unfortunatly, I am beginniing to smell coolant again. It's frustrating because I love the vehicle but the smell is annoying and I doubt it is safe to continue inhaling the coolant fumes (albeit in small amounts). I'm under CPO so cost is no issue - just need to find the culprit of the leak. Any guidance would be much appreciated.

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  • Moderators

The first thing to do is have the system pressure tested (including the coolant cap); takes about 30 min., but would confirm the presence of a leak or not. If it fails the pressure test, you need to go to the next step.

As the leak can be very small, yet still smell quite strongly, I would suggest getting a bottle of UV coolant dye and adding it to the vehicle. Run the vehicle normally for a couple days, then using a "black light" UV source, start inspecting the entire system looking for the tell-tale evidence of a leak (there may be more than one), which will be very pronounced visually due to the dye.

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