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Should the transmission fluid be changed on a 1998 Boxster?

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This is my first post and I hope that someone can help me with a question regarding my 180k service.


I own a 1998 Boxster, almost at 180k miles, tiptronic.


My Porsche mechanic gave me the option of not changing the transmission fluid because:


a) At 180k, the transmission is beyond it's life expectancy

b) The clutches are probably worn down and when that happens it's most happy with the old fluid because with new fluid there's a small chance the transmission will not like it and start slipping.


So the question is change the fluid and take the chance it's going to start slipping or leave the old fluid in?


Thank you for any insight!


Update - the fluid was changed previously at the recommended service interval.


Edited by bill945
misspelling, clarification
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2 hours ago, ttocs said:

Hi, and welcome!


Any history on this car? like how long you've owned and driven it? previous owner history? etc.


Hi!  I'm the original owner and the car has been taken care of 8^).  I've owned it since 1998.  I've stuck to the recommended service schedule all of its life and it's been great!  No transmission problems, no engine problems.

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Porsche's suggested service intervals for the Tip could best be described as "optimistic".  We prefer to do a fluid drain and filter in the 40-50K mile range simply because it is nearly impossible to change out all the fluid (most of the fluid is in the torque converter when the engine is not running), so you typically get less than half of it out during service.  I would seriously consider servicing the transmission.

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I'm in the same camp with those suggesting to service the Tip. You never know, but then . . . you never know!


Frankly I'm puzzled that there aren't any issues with 18 years of usage on the original fluid, let alone the mileage. Mine had 11 years and 30k miles on the original fluid and it needed changing! After service it was happier.

Edited by ttocs
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On 12/7/2016 at 6:02 PM, bill945 said:

Hi ttocs,


The original fluid has been changed (I'm assuming that it was part of the maintenance schedule which I followed).


You mentioned that after your service your car was happier - in what way?


Thank you!

I bought my 2004 Boxster Base Tip not quite a year and a half ago. It had only 30k miles, but 11 years of time on the original trans fluid. The Tip exhibited a few issues while driving, one of which I wish it would do now.


First, while stopped, shifting down from 2nd to 1st would result in a variable amount of "clunk", sometimes harder than other times. Now you'd have to pay very close attention to discern that shifting down to first has occurred. Also, I can now downshift while slowing down which was an absolute no-no before the fluid change!


Second, I never noticed any slipping, but sometimes when it upshifted it would "bang" into the next higher gear. Never happens anymore. Smooth while driving normal, quick when getting on it.


Thirdly, almost all of the time I enjoy shifting manually . . . I like the extra control, and I prefer starting off in 1st gear. But, when I do drive away in 2nd and the torque converter locks up, at that moment I used to hear a lower register squeak and it was easy to hear even with the top up. Now I rarely hear a very faint version of the noise and usually I'd have to be trying to listen for it to be able to notice it.


Lastly, the one thing I'd like the trans to do now but was "fixed" when the new fluid went in is shift from 1st to 2nd gear at 7200 rpm. From everything I've been able to look up, the trans is not supposed to shift at the true redline of 7200, it's supposed to shift at 6750. Again, this is only from 1st gear to 2nd gear. Now mine actually shifts a bit lower than 6900 (not from visual, but confirmed by logging with Durametric). Only later model Tips are programmed from the factory to shift closer to true redline. For example, when the 2005 911 press release was published, shifting at redline from first gear was listed as a new feature.


Now, no matter how the car is driven it just does what it does with no complaint and no hint that there will ever be a problem. A couple months ago I attended a local PCA driving tour and we got to experience pure exhilaration, and again, the trans performed flawlessly!!

Edited by ttocs
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