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Spoiler constantly going up and down


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I have 1 2003 Boxster and in addition to the spoiler going up and down, the check engine, PSM off, ABS, Brake, Cruise Control, Temp and Fuel lights are flashing and all of the gage needles drop to zero and return to their normal level. I recently changed the ignition switch and the battery is 4 years old. Other than all of that the car runs fine.

 

I have a Durametric tester and have a bunch of failure codes but I think that may be because I had the battery disconnected. It does show the Catalytic converter efficiency, Fuel tank ventilation, Secondary air system, Oxygen sensors and Oxygen sensor heat status all fail.

 

Any ideas would be appreciated.

 

Jim

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I would suggest to delete all error codes, perform a long testdrive and recheck back on error codes. Those who remain or reappear are eligible for further research, too much and too old codes lead to a chaotic situation.

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I went out to the car this morning and everything works fine. I cleared all of the error codes, went a mile and all of the problems returned. I took a look and the error codes are:

Engine -1601 Porsche Fault code 660 CAN Timeout

Instrument Cluster - 9101 CAN Drive bus

                                 9110 DME Control Unit

                                 9111 PSM/ABS Control Unit

                                 9112 Tiptronic Control Unit

 

Actual Values - Supply Voltage 13.25

                          Engine Temp 86 C

                          Engine Compartment 70 C

 

Tried Activation for the engine compartment fan and received Send Command Failed

Engine Fan stage 1 activation did not start any fan, stage 2 started the engine fans.

 

I did some searching and cannot make any sense of the codes. If the Supply Voltage is the alternator output, it is .3 volts out of the range given in the service manual.

 

I am going to check the compartment fan as maybe the problems are caused by something in there overheating.

 

Than you for the comments. If you have any more it would be great. I will post the results of the fan check.

 

Jim

 

 

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I went out to the car this morning and everything works fine. I cleared all of the error codes, went a mile and all of the problems returned. I took a look and the error codes are:

Engine -1601 Porsche Fault code 660 CAN Timeout

Instrument Cluster - 9101 CAN Drive bus

                                 9110 DME Control Unit

                                 9111 PSM/ABS Control Unit

                                 9112 Tiptronic Control Unit

 

Actual Values - Supply Voltage 13.25

                          Engine Temp 86 C

                          Engine Compartment 70 C

 

Tried Activation for the engine compartment fan and received Send Command Failed

Engine Fan stage 1 activation did not start any fan, stage 2 started the engine fans.

 

I did some searching and cannot make any sense of the codes. If the Supply Voltage is the alternator output, it is .3 volts out of the range given in the service manual.

 

I am going to check the compartment fan as maybe the problems are caused by something in there overheating.

 

Than you for the comments. If you have any more it would be great. I will post the results of the fan check.

 

Jim

 

The control unit codes you are throwing appear to be on the CAN bus, which controls a lot of stuff in your car, and these are often voltage related issues.

 

What battery voltage and alternator output voltages are you seeing?

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Actual Values - Supply Voltage 13.25

                          Engine Temp 86 C

                          Engine Compartment 70 C

 

 

 

How does the DME report "supply voltage"?  That sounds somewhat low.  Bentley manual says voltage while running should be between 13.5 and 14.5 volts measured at the battery.

Edited by Dennis Nicholls
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Thank you for the ideas. As the battery was 4 years old, I installed a new one. Same issues. The battery voltage, measured at the battery terminals, in the off position is 12.4 vdc, running at 2000 rpm is 13.6 vdc. Are there more charging tests I should make?

 

Jim

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Thank you for the ideas. As the battery was 4 years old, I installed a new one. Same issues. The battery voltage, measured at the battery terminals, in the off position is 12.4 vdc, running at 2000 rpm is 13.6 vdc. Are there more charging tests I should make?

 

Jim

 

That alternator voltage is also bit low, I would also consider having the alternator load tested; you may have a voltage regulator on the way out.

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thats what im thinking too but when mine went, I didnt have any of those symptoms though. my car just wouldnt start after 2, 3 short trips.

my voltage at idle would start at the 13.8 mark and slowly go down. after 10min of idling, it would be at 13.4 and still falling.

here is a side by side of the voltage regulator:

20140514_183538_zpsnehakcgt.jpg

the picture doesnt really shown it but the new one had significantly more of the brushes than the old one.

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Thank you for the ideas. I cleaned the body grounds, the one by the battery and the other above the engine. The ground attached to the engine block is a serious project to get to it. Anybody have the best way to do that?

 

I checked the alternator for 10 minutes. It started at 12.75 and was at 12.45 after 10 minutes. Going to remove the alternator for a trip to the store for a test. Will post the results.

 

Thank you for the help.

 

Jim

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just so you know, the load test they did on my alternator showed everything was fine, yet I still went and bought the part from pelican. $70 vs $500 (cost of oem alt) - no brainer to me. the alternator is super easy to get out. took me ( who never worked on a porsche) about an hour to get it out following the how to's on pelican.

swapped the regulator out, 're installed and havent had any issues since.

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Dragon,

 

How many miles on your car?  Brushs are a wear item.  As an example, I took my Miata's alternator out at 156K miles.  The brushes were close to the wear limit.  I installed new brushes and a nice new SKF front bearing for $20 total and put the alternator back in. 

 

When brushes get short (in length) they don't load the springs as much, so the contact with the slip rings is less secure.

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It's odd that the regulator assy. doesn't show up in the PET, although Pelican lists it as 000 043 206 37.  I wonder if Sunset can get the part under that number.  Pelican's price is now $37.xx for my 2000 2.7l 5MT.

 

None of my manuals show how to service the alternator which is odd.  AWD, is it the standard way where you have to retain the brushes with a paperclip until you get the assy. installed? 

 

Here's a forum DIY...won't find on a search because he uses "generator" rather than "alternator" and "control circuit" rather than "regulator".  http://www.renntech.org/forums/tutorials/article/95-diy-change-of-the-generators-circuit-control/

Edited by Dennis Nicholls
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It's odd that the regulator assy. doesn't show up in the PET, although Pelican lists it as 000 043 206 37.  I wonder if Sunset can get the part under that number.  Pelican's price is now $37.xx for my 2000 2.7l 5MT.

 

None of my manuals show how to service the alternator which is odd.  AWD, is it the standard way where you have to retain the brushes with a paperclip until you get the assy. installed? 

 

Here's a forum DIY...won't find on a search because he uses "generator" rather than "alternator" and "control circuit" rather than "regulator".  http://www.renntech.org/forums/tutorials/article/95-diy-change-of-the-generators-circuit-control/

 

There is a reason for that: Porsche does not sell just the regulator, therefore it is not listed as a separately available part in the PET. They only sell the entire alternator.

 

The regulator commonly used in these cars is used in VW, Mercedes, and even some Ford models.  Typical street pricing is around $40 or so.

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Replaced the alternator, a bit of a pain coming out but the new one is installed and the original problem is still there. The voltage is up to 14.2 and it is steady after 10 minutes. I did notice the cycling of the lights is slower by about half. Ideas appreciated.

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I thought I may have installed a faulty ignition switch so I replaced the switch. Same problems. I ran the Durameteric tester and did a search for the error code P1601 and found a person that had the same fault codes I have been recording and the spoiler issue. The problem was fixed with a repaired instrument cluster. I disconnected and reconnected the three connectors on the cluster and the problems, at least for the present, are gone. I will see if it holds and will post a note in two weeks to see if that fix holds.

Thank you all for your assistance.

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  • 3 weeks later...

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