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2002 996 C4 Cab - NIGHTMARES

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Hi guys. Can somebody offer some guidance here...

It started back in september...I became a proud new Papa to my 2002 996 C4 cab, with 46000 miles. Silver. Turbo rims...an absolute KNOCKOUT.

She ran AMAZING...fast, powerful, smooth..the most linear car I have ever owned.

All was well...until January 21st. While on the interstate, I got my first code: check fluid level. I immediately pulled over and shut her off. Steam. Never overheated - thank GOD.

Called the dealer I got it from and was told "I'm sending a flatbed - let me handle it here - the Porsche dealer will rob you blind"

Ok....$170 for the tow.

So the truck comes...and I wasn't aware that the driver was pulling it up by the front lower control arms (we'll talk about that again in a minute).

Next day, guy calls me and says - "pump is changed, but the rear tie rod is worn out so bad - that I can't let you take it- I ordered a new one and it'll be here in a few days".

10 days later....$695....I pick it up. Box of broken parts. "I saved you a fortune - and I even topped off your oil, it was 2 qts low!"

"By the way...you probably want to get that rear-end aligned....its time"

2 miles later...I feel like I'm driving a sit-n-spin....my 2nd code: PSM FAILURE / ABS FAILURE.

I call him. "Oh that's nothing - Porsches do that so you have to take it to a dealer just to get the codes reset - you're cars fine."

Codes every 4 miles EXACTLY. PSM/ABS. Cars sliding all over its lane....somethings wrong.

I take it to a local porsche guru with a SOLID reputation.

I run down the story, show hom the parts.

He looks grim. Apparently the 1st place (that had saved me a fortune) had replaced a rear lower control arm (drivers side)....he was certain that a jackstand had been put under it and SNAPPED it in two (shows me the broken piece) and he's obviously appalled at what he see's.

He continues: the water pump hadn't even been bolted in all the way - still leaking. The front control arms are GUAGED out with fresh hook mark, and bent all to hell. (Remember the tow truck driver?)

"By the way - your car has WAY too much oil in it"

He bolts the water pump in correctly, runs a diagnostic...$162. Orders parts, makes apt.

4 days, $2856.23 later....whole realignment., new tire (rear passngr) new MAF...CV boot up front..clutch spring...2 front control arms, 1 rear for the passngr side (to match the 997 part number that the drivers side now had).

Car runs like CRAP. Codes for battery/gen....brake distribution...abs failiure..idles like its being kicked in the nuts.

Voltage gauge usually sits a hair below 14....now barely at 12...then to 14...back to 12 (never seems to be were it was when I turn it off)

Had a voltage spike on my way to his shop. Went from 12 to 16 in 2 seconds. Threw a million codes at me. Shut it off, call him. Start it up....purring like a kitten. He takes it out. 25 minute spin...runs perfect. I take it home.

2 hours later, I get in, crank it -12 on the meter.....shoots to 16 - I shut it off (no codes). I wait. Restart...reading 14...slowly starts to rise...I shut it off. Swear. Restart....just under 14.

My shop is reputable, and I know they're experienced...but the owner gets PISSED if I mention ANYTHING from these forums..I had already asked about cleaning a MAF, mentioned a few other things from here....he's not listening.

I'm pulling my hair out. 3 weeks...almost $4000. My car runs like crap. It feels like its "floating"...not tight and grabbing the road like before. I have codes...and I'm broke.

"Maybe its the alternator, maybe its the battery, maybe its the voltage regulator -Take it home and drive it like a porsche - see if that helps the battery situation".

Will somebody PLEASE contact me and tell me what to do?

I took it to Advanced Auto Parts ( At least they tested my battery). Fella says the cold crank amps are 640 instead of 680...not too bad.

Does a load test (heat on, Hi beams on, 2000 rpms)....says its recharging ok.

What the HECK????



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Sorry to hear of your problems. And I know that refering you to the following link is like closing th barn door after the horses have escaped.


I have printed out the AAA towing guide and carry it in my car.

Re. your electrical problems, these cars are very sensitive to proper battery / alternator functioning. Seeing how your battery seems to be serviceable, I would address your alternator - more specifically the voltage regulating control of the alternator. The voltage regulator can be replaced without changing the alternator. I might also check the ground cables on your battery and and alternator.

I would check with your local chapter of the PCA to find out where other members are taking their cars for service and repair. As you are, unfortunately, finding out, these cars are fairly expensive to maintain and even more expensive to repair faulty service.

"My shop is reputable, and I know they're experienced...but the owner gets PISSED if I mention ANYTHING from these forums..I had already asked about cleaning a MAF, mentioned a few other things from here....he's not listening." I'd put this shop on my do not patronize list. It's your car and your money....he'd better listen.

And finally, I would purchase a copy of "Porsche 996 The Essential Companion", published by Veloce. I got my copy from Amazon dot com. It's full of information including trouble shooting and DIY help. Having and reading an Owner's Manual would be a plus too.

Good luck,


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