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996/7 Turbo engine issues as seen on Rennlist.


Niels
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Still a newbie looking for a 996/7 Turbo and thus spending waay too much time trawling the internet.

I see on the Rennlist forum that there exists two potentially expensive failure points on these otherwise “bulletproof” Mezger engines (especially as they age).

1) Coolant line epoxy failures and

2) spun camshafts.

And yet there’s almost nothing on this forum which alludes to this being a  problem of a similarly chronic magnitude in Australia.. 

Why is this so? 

Has anyone here experienced either of those issues and if so, what was the cost to fix?

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I wa just reading Rennlist on this yesterday.

It could be 2 things I think.  

It's probably much like the dreaded IMS issue with the M96 engines.  Everyone knows someone who's brother had a neighbour that once went to dinner with a fella who's room mate at college had a teacher that heard of a guy who's IMS shit itself.

Does the problem exist - undeniably.  Does it happen often - no (otherwise who'd spend 200k on a 911).  Do you need to be aware of the potentiality & take appropriate actions so you don't end up being the guy that teacher heard of - absolultely.

Plus there are many more cars sold in the States so the likely hood that a few owners are effected there is greater.

Then again, what would I know.  I can't afford a Mezger car.  (sad face).

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12 minutes ago, Jason E said:

Everyone knows someone who's brother had a neighbour that once went to dinner with a fella who's room mate at college had a teacher that heard of a guy who's IMS shit itself.

 It was the last guys neighbours dads mate brother...apparently

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When you look at the failure rate, multiplied by number of cars sold in Aus, multiplied by the number of Aus owners who have suffered such an event actually being a regular contributor to PFA.... then I'm not surprised you don't read about it here.  I suspect experiences in Aus are more likely to ventilate on Rennlist/Pelican in any case given massive user numbers.

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As well as the relative low volume of cars that come to Australia, these cars generally do low mileage... When you count the kilometers, so many of these cars only do around 3-5,000 kilometers a year so maybe that relative lack of use means you don't see the issues like countries where the cars are not so ridiculously priced that you seldom drive them?

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Coolant line failures definitely happen is aus but I think a lot have also been sorted as that’s an issue for metzger’s that’s known a long time ago and a straight forward preventative fix too. I don’t think it’s a big deal.  

spun camshafts - never heard of that or seen it here. 

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11 minutes ago, Fishcop said:

As well as the relative low volume of cars that come to Australia, these cars generally do low mileage... When you count the kilometers, so many of these cars only do around 3-5,000 kilometers a year so maybe that relative lack of use means you don't see the issues like countries where the cars are not so ridiculously priced that you seldom drive them?

 

13 minutes ago, Fishcop said:

As well as the relative low volume of cars that come to Australia, these cars generally do low mileage... When you count the kilometers, so many of these cars only do around 3-5,000 kilometers a year so maybe that relative lack of use means you don't see the issues like countries where the cars are not so ridiculously priced that you seldom drive them?

+1.   I also suspect heat cycles may have bit to do with this  on the aging 20 year  plus epoxy.   

 

 

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Indeed, there’s only one thread on this forum relating to the coolant pipes needing to be pinned or welded. One is an anomaly.
 

Good to hear both events are  pretty much unheard of here, I was getting spooked with the idea of a potential $40K engine rebuild looming over the horizon.

Interesting there’s been zero cases of spun camshafts. Don’t suppose USA (California) engines are different in some way to RoW engines? I will go trawl through UK sites to see if it happens there with the same frequency.

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3 hours ago, Niels said:

Still a newbie looking for a 996/7 Turbo and thus spending waay too much time trawling the internet.

I see on the Rennlist forum that there exists two potentially expensive failure points on these otherwise “bulletproof” Mezger engines (especially as they age).

1) Coolant line epoxy failures and

2) spun camshafts.

And yet there’s almost nothing on this forum which alludes to this being a  problem of a similarly chronic magnitude in Australia.. 

Why is this so? 

Has anyone here experienced either of those issues and if so, what was the cost to fix?

Engine drop.  So are you wrenching or workshop doing the work . You welding or pinning, you going with replacement inlet kits or welding / pinning existing.  Are you going to drop the motor to just do the inlet pipes , eg in and out, or  may as well do preventative maintenance whilst the engines dropped  on these  20year plus cars  eg clutch,  pressure tested and change out 20 year old suspect rubber boost hoses and  suspect sensors.   You  talking stock or tuned  .     (eg  Bulletproof  in the eyes of GT3 purists that are running lower torque valves, but running higher than factory boost and other mods  and the rods in the Mezger  appear suspect at around 550ftlb torque  and the wrong tune can make the rods banana looking or worse rods out the side of the crank case  You going to do rods, whilst the motor out. etc etc..Need  the scope. As an FYI, I did a ppi on 996 turbo, a cylinder when from 4% to 16% on compression leak down test.  Well respected northenn suburbs Sydney Porsche indy said they would need  circa   60hours to drop the motor and open it up for a diagnosis.   

I have  a totally different view to Chronic Magnitude.  I spent 2 years doing what you are doing on rennlist, 6 speedonline.  My view is the percentage of posters their driving the shit of their cars, (spending little on preventative maintenence ) or a bit of time on tracks  / 1/4 mile runs with cars seeing WOT appears chronic compared to owners say on this forum.  

Step back mate, take the number of those posters (what 20 -30)  / total number of cars left the factory and its 2/5th of f all as a percentage.   But like all statistics , there are outliers.     Spun camshafts .   Divide the probability of  inlet failure by a hundred me thinks.  If either happens on your watch, put it down to a statistical outlier (shit out of luck)

Why do you think there are bugger all posts on here talking about those failures.   Owners on this forum are generally stock is best ( weekend duties, not modded, rarely driven on tracks / 1/4 mile runs, servicing kept up, rarely hitting maximum boost or  spending a lot of time at WOT and  not running higher engine temps longer  ( I reckon high temp engine cycling accelerates the epoxy degregation).  Rennlist  = much more technical forum for enthusiasts, tweak the cars, track them, drive them hard, bitch about them. When they break they share what happened and what they did to fix  .   So which category your in. If you intend to drive one of these  hard  the majority of time under your watch, you got to up your preventative maintanence / actual maintanence / parts fail bucket (the gt3 mezger is more bullet proof in N/A form me thinks.  Running bolt ons for boost  and upping the torque perhaps  = a little less bullet proof).  Got to Pay to play.   

May I suggest if you aren't gong to flog a 996 turbo regularly,  your focus on Rennlist should be on what preventative maintenance parts you should do / keep on top of before they fail and what aged rubber bits need refreshing to make the behind the wheel experience better and ensure  you have a maintenance budget allowed for when buying (eg adder to your purchase price that you need to spend in the near term).  So the key question I have for you after your rennlist lurking is are you in the stock camp, Slightly tweaked, or are you in the > 500hp at crank category

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Smit2100,

On reflection, I suspect you maybe correct about the statistical probability.

If you like, I’m happy to ask the moderators to delete this thread.

Cheers

 

niels

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Neils - dont withdraw this thread, I think its a healthy discussion.

Although I had never heard of camshaft wear problems (& am sceptical myself), the need to pin the Turbo coolant pipes has been noted here for a long time. Its more of a weakness with the Cayenne's too, which overshadows the 911 Turbo. The fix is the same.

If I ever got a Turbo myself I would plan to do it as a maintenance job - before its needed. So its good to have a reminder thread like this.

 

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The Cayenne fix (at least the 955/957 Turbo's) is easier as its just a replacement for the plastic pipes out for the alloy/metal ones.  

The coolant pipe weld on the mezger is an engine out job.  Some have said they can be pinned with the engine in the car, but the workshop I use wasn't keen on that on the 997s, not sure on the 996 and what the access is like. 

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One extra point. Engine out jobs in 911 997 aren’t too big a job.  Quite quick to drop out the back vs most cars. 
sample supplier fix parts here. No affiliation. I dropped their 997 GT3 version into my ride when I bought it, to ensure didn’t have to worry. 
https://www.sharkwerks.com/engine/p5158-sharkwerks-coolant-pipes-for-997-turbo-gt2-rs-SHAE394

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@Niels like you I was asking some of these questions, but at my local Porsche workshops.

They said they’d heard and read of the issues (forums) but have never needed to deal with them. They weren’t sure why the problems seemed so prevalent overseas?

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7 hours ago, 1q2w3e4r said:

The Cayenne fix (at least the 955/957 Turbo's) is easier as its just a replacement for the plastic pipes out for the alloy/metal ones.  

The coolant pipe weld on the mezger is an engine out job.  Some have said they can be pinned with the engine in the car, but the workshop I use wasn't keen on that on the 997s, not sure on the 996 and what the access is like. 

I had  a chat with Kevin at UWM on pinning. If I recall correctly, there is 5 that you can get to to pin, with out dropping the motor, but removing parts etc , but 2 are hard to get to.

I don't see pinning as a permanent fix, eg appears can still leak, just prevents against doing to do a full dump if one lets do.   Then welding , has its its issues, eg two dissimliar metals, heat cycling and welds cracking.     Outside the box thinking, but if your spending big buck to drop the motor, I would try and get a oil and gas  welder to prep and weld those  inlet pipes and if you were anal, get a local quality assurance mob to do ndt tests the welds.   I would just put faith in the welder (eg if there pumping out  a  truck load of dia inches a week on oil and gas process pipping, hey should have some thin walled water pipes covered.  

 

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9 hours ago, Niels said:

Smit2100,

On reflection, I suspect you maybe correct about the statistical probability.

If you like, I’m happy to ask the moderators to delete this thread.

Cheers

 

niels

For the benefit of others  in the future that may be trawling through searches on here  on this issue like yourself, not  sure on your angle  on why  you want this thread deleted , (maybe a mistep on a few naughty words in my post , but didn't use the F word in full .  You asked a question and I opined accordingly  being 4 - 5 years ahead of you on your potential journey to picking up a 996 turbo.  

Note, I'm perhaps less risk adverse than  others.  I have another car  (different german  mark) and forum readers get  nervous on that motor  after reading the hyped up posts on worn big end rod bearings wearing as a ticking time bomb .  Its the same result and conclusion for me on that motor as with the mezger.   Statistically not going to happen on my watch.  Owners that aren't on forums would have no clue if they took there car to a dealer for a service .   What, you knowingly  sold a defective design that you hid and you want me to pay for your defective design.       On the last couple of  services this year at different shops, (new customer)  they both recommended and quoted needs rod bearings replaced.   I think statistically,  I can sleep extremely well and not give a toss that they may go on my watch.   Others may not.   So the first shop said what about a oil analysis and I said whats the cost.   Got  the oil analysis done nothing from that test suggests they are wearing.  Show the second shop the results and they said but but..........    they can deteriorate quickly  .   Screw that, but I may do them if selling to appease the nervous nelly buyers who read the threads and prefer to have them done recently when buying for added insurance.     Plus if it does go, perhaps an opportunity, eg engine out , non matching numbers now, car devalued putting in a  replacement motor, they lack torque in stock form and  a harrop supercharger is a no brainer and then perhaps a long term keeper.    I  had a good chat to the owner of the workshop and he reckons the S65 motor with a blower is up there with one of the best drives  coming out of his workshops  and extremely underrated.  .  

 

I

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19 hours ago, smit2100 said:

For the benefit of others  in the future that may be trawling through searches on here  on this issue like yourself, not  sure on your angle  on why  you want this thread deleted , (maybe a mistep on a few naughty words in my post , but didn't use the F word in full .  You asked a question and I opined accordingly  being 4 - 5 years ahead of you on your potential journey to picking up a 996 turbo.  

Note, I'm perhaps less risk adverse than  others.  I have another car  (different german  mark) and forum readers get  nervous on that motor  after reading the hyped up posts on worn big end rod bearings wearing as a ticking time bomb .  Its the same result and conclusion for me on that motor as with the mezger.   Statistically not going to happen on my watch.  Owners that aren't on forums would have no clue if they took there car to a dealer for a service .   What, you knowingly  sold a defective design that you hid and you want me to pay for your defective design.       On the last couple of  services this year at different shops, (new customer)  they both recommended and quoted needs rod bearings replaced.   I think statistically,  I can sleep extremely well and not give a toss that they may go on my watch.   Others may not.   So the first shop said what about a oil analysis and I said whats the cost.   Got  the oil analysis done nothing from that test suggests they are wearing.  Show the second shop the results and they said but but..........    they can deteriorate quickly  .   Screw that, but I may do them if selling to appease the nervous nelly buyers who read the threads and prefer to have them done recently when buying for added insurance.     Plus if it does go, perhaps an opportunity, eg engine out , non matching numbers now, car devalued putting in a  replacement motor, they lack torque in stock form and  a harrop supercharger is a no brainer and then perhaps a long term keeper.    I  had a good chat to the owner of the workshop and he reckons the S65 motor with a blower is up there with one of the best drives  coming out of his workshops  and extremely underrated.  .  

 

I

Rod bearings are a common issue on BMW M cars since the S54B32.  Its easy to check, they drop the sump and check the bearings, not that big a deal. 

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  • 1 month later...

Nice to see this topic here, especially as a 997.1TT owner :)

Since last year when I started my search to Feb when I actually got my 911, I've had the 2 main issues on the back of my mind (coolant lines & spun cam). Will give my 2cents.

Aussie cars in general, do less mileage than US cars. I consider that a fact. It's quite common to find 60k+ mile 996/997 Turbos in the US. When searching for mine, it's quite rare to find a 911 Turbo over 100k kms. This tells me, we drive them less plus we have a relatively low number in country too. I believe with age & mileage, the coolant lines will become an issue. Multiple Porsche workshops I've spoken to in Sydney have heard of it & quite a few have actually welded the lines. Therefore, budget for it, but don't lose sleep over it either. It's not cheap, but at least we know what to look for.

The spun cams look to be a non existant issue in Aus, even with some pretty well known Porsche workshops/tuners. Even in the States, it's relatively rare & seems to impact "tuned" Mezgers more. But again, not common even there. Even when it starts to rear its ugly head, it's diagnosed relatively quickly & I've read no reports of it getting so severe it became engine terminal.

Rods, well that's an interesting one. I'd be cautious of it when shooting for more than bolt ons & tune. Keep in mind, it's the sudden surge of high torque that would trigger failure. So high boost on responsive turbos is not their friend. Hence why a few tuners worldwide tune around the issue.

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