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997.2 GTS Engine Trouble - looking for input/help


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I have owned Porsches for 8 or so years now. Last year, I upgraded from a 996 C4S to a 997.2 GTS. One of the reasons was to avoid engine failures.

The current car is a 2012 GTS with 15k miles on it. Still under factory warranty.

So, few months ago, I developed a strange knocking noise in my engine. By the time I made it to a dealer, it was gone. I was advised to come back if the noise comes back.

I did in cold weather (about 0 deg) few days ago. I took the car to the dealer. Porsche advised them to take the engine apart and see what they find.

On the bottom of the oil pan, they found bunch of different size plastic shavings (from shavings, to 1 inch chunks). There was also about a 2 inch pin that broke off from something. They suspect it came from the area around the tensioner. They are taking it apart even further to see what they find.

I was told that they may just replace the timing chain or whatever needs to be done around there, go through the engine looking for other damage and put it back together.

I feel very uncomfortable with that. Plastic shavings can damage bearings, cams, etc. Right?

I strongly believe, they should put a new engine in it considering all the possible future problems caused by potential damage.

Any experiences? Ideas?

Thank you in advance,
Mark

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Sorry to hear your ordeal. This is the first time I hear about 997.2 engine problem and Porsche asking dealer to disassemble and even repair the engine. This was unheard of for 996s. Anyway, glad that you're under warranty and they should take care of you. Curious to see what they find.

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I have owned Porsches for 8 or so years now. Last year, I upgraded from a 996 C4S to a 997.2 GTS. One of the reasons was to avoid engine failures.

The current car is a 2012 GTS with 15k miles on it. Still under factory warranty.

So, few months ago, I developed a strange knocking noise in my engine. By the time I made it to a dealer, it was gone. I was advised to come back if the noise comes back.

I did in cold weather (about 0 deg) few days ago. I took the car to the dealer. Porsche advised them to take the engine apart and see what they find.

On the bottom of the oil pan, they found bunch of different size plastic shavings (from shavings, to 1 inch chunks). There was also about a 2 inch pin that broke off from something. They suspect it came from the area around the tensioner. They are taking it apart even further to see what they find.

I was told that they may just replace the timing chain or whatever needs to be done around there, go through the engine looking for other damage and put it back together.

I feel very uncomfortable with that. Plastic shavings can damage bearings, cams, etc. Right?

I strongly believe, they should put a new engine in it considering all the possible future problems caused by potential damage.

Any experiences? Ideas?

Thank you in advance,

Mark

Plastic bits are no where as much a potential threat as metal shards. It is not uncommon to find small plastic bits in either the M96 or 97 engine sumps; the chain tensioners have plastic wear pads on them that erode over time and the bits collect in the sump. The pin section is a bit more concerning as it may be the tensioner pad pivot, which points to bigger problems. Let them have a look under warranty, they may still decide to pull and replace the lump depending upon what they find.

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how would anyone feel about buying a car that had a new engine put in? good? bad?

any concerns with depreciation?

thanks everyone for your input.

First of all, the engine serial numbers are not matched to the VIN, but are engine size and type coded, so there is no "numbers matching" issue per say. If the engine is a factory reman (carries an "AT" in the engine number), and is the correct size and model for the car, it basically carries all the latest updates as of its install date, so it may actually be better than the original lump.

With some model years, there were some problems that led to engine replacement under warranty; that is a simple fact of life and should not be a major concern of "deduct" item on a PPI. That said, there are more than a few cars running around with the wrong engines in them, usually a much smaller displacement bone yard unit. We did a PPI on a beautiful 996 C4 that was absolutely immaculate, except for the 2.7L Boxster engine in the engine bay. This would obviously degrade the car's value, but that is why you do a PPI on these cars.

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Was just about to say something similar to JFP. It's not like your car was in an accident and needed a new engine. If they pull the lump in its entirety and replace it under warranty, then you basically have the most up-to-date engine (could have upgraded components above what was pulled if anything was superseded, etc) with 0 miles on it. I would think that would actually help the value of your car. But it often comes down to selling to an educated buyer.......

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Anything is possible and one's always more paranoid when it's their own car. But any reputable OPC isn't going to put a different engine in your car. But ya, one of the best things about this site is it helps you understand your car better. I always prefer to know as much as possible about what's going on, whether it's my car...... my doctor........ my investments, etc. May hire a professional to do some work. But it's always a good idea to understand what they are doing in detail.

Good luck with your car. I know that's disappointing but if you get a new engine out of this it might not be as bad as you might have thought when they first told you this was a possibility.

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It seems that the situation JFP is describing would apply to cars that were not fixed by Porsche under warranty. I would hope that they would put the correct engine in if needed.

"Hope" and "reality" are often two different subjects when money is involved. Porsche dealerships are not usually going to source a boneyard replacement engine, but that does not always apply to everyone else. Smaller displacement engines are often quite a bit cheaper in the aftermarket than the large displacement 911 units, and if you object is just to get the car ready for sale or trade, you would be surprised at what happens. If this type of thing only happens once or twice, that would be one thing; but it happens more often than you might imagine.

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IMHO, issues with the previous generation M96 & M97 engines are not relevant to the 9A1 DFI engine in your car. They are significantly more stout and reliable than those ever hoped to be. Ask me how I know. I agree you should insist they replace the motor with a PCNA rebuilt 9A1 with a warranty. It is surprising to hear they are considering rebuilding it. One would think having the failed motor sent back to the factory for an autopsy would be more valuable to Porsche. Especially because of the greatly reduced failure rates of the newer motor. Plus it would probably be less expensive than a dealer rebuild and would certainly result in a happier repeat customer, but you never know.

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IMHO, issues with the previous generation M96 & M97 engines are not relevant to the 9A1 DFI engine in your car. They are significantly more stout and reliable than those ever hoped to be. Ask me how I know. I agree you should insist they replace the motor with a PCNA rebuilt 9A1 with a warranty. It is surprising to hear they are considering rebuilding it. One would think having the failed motor sent back to the factory for an autopsy would be more valuable to Porsche. Especially because of the greatly reduced failure rates of the newer motor. Plus it would probably be less expensive than a dealer rebuild and would certainly result in a happier repeat customer, but you never know.

Your point about the M96/97 engine's issues not being relevant is for the most part correct; however, the 9A1 design has also shown some unique problems of its own.

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After almost 2 weeks in the shop, and telling me there is no way anyone damage could be done and no one would approve a new engine, they found deep scratches in one of the valves. 30 minutes later, Porsche approved a new engine. :thumbup:

I guess I will need to brake it in before thinking about any DEs. :D

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Congrats and enjoy the new engine! Do they know what's the cause of the scratches? You probably don't care at this point anyway :)

JFP, are any of these 9A1 problems even close to catastrophic like M96 IMSB?

Possibly; high pressure fuel pump issues are fairly well known, fuel intrusion from the DFI is leading to cylinder wall scoring issues, and more importantly there have been some multiple reports of abnormal cam chain wear. If the chain fails, the end result would be the same as an IMS failure.

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Congrats and enjoy the new engine! Do they know what's the cause of the scratches? You probably don't care at this point anyway :)

JFP, are any of these 9A1 problems even close to catastrophic like M96 IMSB?

Possibly; high pressure fuel pump issues are fairly well known, fuel intrusion from the DFI is leading to cylinder wall scoring issues, and more importantly there have been some multiple reports of abnormal cam chain wear. If the chain fails, the end result would be the same as an IMS failure.

Argh, that's disappointing to say the least. Thanks for the info. I was hoping the 9A1 a bullet proof engine :(

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Congrats and enjoy the new engine! Do they know what's the cause of the scratches? You probably don't care at this point anyway :)

JFP, are any of these 9A1 problems even close to catastrophic like M96 IMSB?

Possibly; high pressure fuel pump issues are fairly well known, fuel intrusion from the DFI is leading to cylinder wall scoring issues, and more importantly there have been some multiple reports of abnormal cam chain wear. If the chain fails, the end result would be the same as an IMS failure.

Argh, that's disappointing to say the least. Thanks for the info. I was hoping the 9A1 a bullet proof engine :(

The closest thing Porsche has produced to being bullet proof was the Metzger lump (now discontinued) that used to come in the Turbo and GT cars. Brutally strong, and ridiculously expensive; but you could still break it if you really tried.

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  • 1 month later...

Congrats and enjoy the new engine! Do they know what's the cause of the scratches? You probably don't care at this point anyway :)

JFP, are any of these 9A1 problems even close to catastrophic like M96 IMSB?

Possibly; high pressure fuel pump issues are fairly well known, fuel intrusion from the DFI is leading to cylinder wall scoring issues, and more importantly there have been some multiple reports of abnormal cam chain wear. If the chain fails, the end result would be the same as an IMS failure.

Argh, that's disappointing to say the least. Thanks for the info. I was hoping the 9A1 a bullet proof engine :(

The closest thing Porsche has produced to being bullet proof was the Metzger lump (now discontinued) that used to come in the Turbo and GT cars. Brutally strong, and ridiculously expensive; but you could still break it if you really tried.

Hopefully the engines in the new 991 cars particularly the Turbos and GTS have been sorted out by now??

Edited by Mijostyn
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Congrats and enjoy the new engine! Do they know what's the cause of the scratches? You probably don't care at this point anyway :)

JFP, are any of these 9A1 problems even close to catastrophic like M96 IMSB?

Possibly; high pressure fuel pump issues are fairly well known, fuel intrusion from the DFI is leading to cylinder wall scoring issues, and more importantly there have been some multiple reports of abnormal cam chain wear. If the chain fails, the end result would be the same as an IMS failure.

Argh, that's disappointing to say the least. Thanks for the info. I was hoping the 9A1 a bullet proof engine :(

The closest thing Porsche has produced to being bullet proof was the Metzger lump (now discontinued) that used to come in the Turbo and GT cars. Brutally strong, and ridiculously expensive; but you could still break it if you really tried.

Hopefully the engines in the new 991 cars particularly the Turbos and GTS have been sorted out by now??

At this time, I do not have enough information about what changes were made between the regular 9A1 and the Turbo versions to really be definitive on all the differences; there has to be more than a few, but Porsche has been pretty closed mouth about it. As we get to spend more time with these newer cars, all shall be revealed....

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Congrats and enjoy the new engine! Do they know what's the cause of the scratches? You probably don't care at this point anyway :)

JFP, are any of these 9A1 problems even close to catastrophic like M96 IMSB?

Possibly; high pressure fuel pump issues are fairly well known, fuel intrusion from the DFI is leading to cylinder wall scoring issues, and more importantly there have been some multiple reports of abnormal cam chain wear. If the chain fails, the end result would be the same as an IMS failure.

Argh, that's disappointing to say the least. Thanks for the info. I was hoping the 9A1 a bullet proof engine :(

The closest thing Porsche has produced to being bullet proof was the Metzger lump (now discontinued) that used to come in the Turbo and GT cars. Brutally strong, and ridiculously expensive; but you could still break it if you really tried.

Hopefully the engines in the new 991 cars particularly the Turbos and GTS have been sorted out by now??

At this time, I do not have enough information about what changes were made between the regular 9A1 and the Turbo versions to really be definitive on all the differences; there has to be more than a few, but Porsche has been pretty closed mouth about it. As we get to spend more time with these newer cars, all shall be revealed....

Hopefully WW's influence is wearing off. Porsche is back to racing and hopefully back to making tough cars.

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Congrats and enjoy the new engine! Do they know what's the cause of the scratches? You probably don't care at this point anyway :)

JFP, are any of these 9A1 problems even close to catastrophic like M96 IMSB?

Possibly; high pressure fuel pump issues are fairly well known, fuel intrusion from the DFI is leading to cylinder wall scoring issues, and more importantly there have been some multiple reports of abnormal cam chain wear. If the chain fails, the end result would be the same as an IMS failure.

Argh, that's disappointing to say the least. Thanks for the info. I was hoping the 9A1 a bullet proof engine :(

The closest thing Porsche has produced to being bullet proof was the Metzger lump (now discontinued) that used to come in the Turbo and GT cars. Brutally strong, and ridiculously expensive; but you could still break it if you really tried.

Hopefully the engines in the new 991 cars particularly the Turbos and GTS have been sorted out by now??

At this time, I do not have enough information about what changes were made between the regular 9A1 and the Turbo versions to really be definitive on all the differences; there has to be more than a few, but Porsche has been pretty closed mouth about it. As we get to spend more time with these newer cars, all shall be revealed....

Hopefully WW's influence is wearing off. Porsche is back to racing and hopefully back to making tough cars.

I'm sure they have taken the time to strengthen components to withstand the rigors of the Turbo cars and how they are used, but without having seen one example of each engine disassembled side by side, it is often difficult to figure out what they have done.

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