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How Common is IMS/RMS failure???

Seems like I'm finding a ton of info warning about IMS/RMS failure and I was wondering if anyone really knew how common of an issue it is? It seems like everywhere you look on the web people are talking about it but then I've found Totall911.com articles which speculate its only about 5% of the cars made.

Thoughts?
Old 08-29-2011, 08:56 AM
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In the last 19 months I have seen 9 of them. One of them had the cam deviation chatter.
Old 08-29-2011, 01:29 PM
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5%.
Of 145,000 M96 996's... 7,250 failures.

Ref. The Truth
June issue GT Porsche.
Old 08-30-2011, 06:11 AM
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IMS and RMS are two entirely different issues and they should not be discussed in the same context.

IMS = Intermediate Shaft
RMS = Rear Main Seal


The RMS issue is a leaking seal, nothing more. It's actually quite rare to find a car with a leaking RMS these days - most leaking seals have been replaced with the latest version which doesn't leak. Those motors which could not be fixed because they were out of spec were replaced by Porsche under warranty. RMS issues are easy to spot and the issue is harmless, except maybe a spot of oil on the garage floor.

The IMS though is a different story. (OK - IMS seal leaks can occur, but like the RMS these are harmless and easy to fix.)

IMS *bearing* failures are a real problem. The bearing that supports the intermediate shaft was poorly designed and prone to failure. It gives little to no warning before it fails and when it does fail it destroys your motor. Dead, done - you're not rebuilding the old motor because it's fu^%ed. You're buying a new motor.

This has been discussed to death on line, and then discussed a zillion times more. In the end though, the answer is always the same, only Porsche knows, and they probably don't even know, and at any rate they are *not* saying anything.

Problem is that Porsche replaced a lot of engines in the first five years or so, all under warranty. Not all of them were IMS issues, some were RMS issues that could not be solved, some were for cracked heads, some were for porous castings, some were just service manager's taking the easy route to making a customer happy. Porsche took all of the motors back for analysis. most were re-manufactured with upgrades and these went back into the system.

These days we rely on the experience of knowledgeable independent repair people, but they only see cars with problems so they have a biased view.

After all the chatter is done, a figure of between 1% and 5% seems to be consensus, with the later 3.6 litre cars suffering less than the early 3.4 litre cars, and with early Boxsters being the worst....depending on who you talk to because of course there were a lot more Boxsters sold, so in absolute terms there will also be more failures.

Now don't ask again because M96 owners get annoyed by the question.
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Old 08-31-2011, 08:42 PM
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I've got an impression that the failure rate is much higher. But you are right, independent repair people are like doctors, they only see sick patients.
As a PS one of my customers with an 02 boxster bought a crate motor 2.5 years ago (35k) because of an IMS failure; this time I did an oil change and found the filter full of metal.
And to add insult to injury, I checked PET about two weeks ago and the prices of the early engines doubled from 9k to 18k. This will really total a lot of the early cars as the cost of repair will be two to three times value of the car.
Old 09-01-2011, 06:45 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DCgearhead View Post
Seems like I'm finding a ton of info warning about IMS/RMS failure and I was wondering if anyone really knew how common of an issue it is? It seems like everywhere you look on the web people are talking about it but then I've found Totall911.com articles which speculate its only about 5% of the cars made.

Thoughts?
Keep in mind that on these forums you will only hear about the failures as no one posts "I've got ****K miles and no IMS failure!" The 986 forum is one of the worst, in my opinion, as there is a business that posts about them that stands to make money off the fear of IMS failure.
Old 09-01-2011, 07:09 AM
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Jasper covered it in a nutshell. I've seriously considered a 996 - it's a lot of car for the money. Three hundred HP, rear engined goodness for 17-20K! But, all you need is for the engine to conk on you and you're instantly upside down - on a car that still depreciating. I'm still tempted...
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Old 09-01-2011, 08:43 AM
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IMS on 997.1

To what extent is IMS failure a concern on the 997.1? Just bought a 2006 with a M97.01 motor and wasn't aware of this issue until now.
Old 09-01-2011, 07:18 PM
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Check out "total911.com" and scroll down to "997 engine failure: fact or myth" 1999 thru 2008 models are mentioned
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Last edited by KNS; 09-01-2011 at 07:28 PM..
Old 09-01-2011, 07:22 PM
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Well that was a long and depressing read. I just have to hope that I'm not one of the "unlucky" ones.
Old 09-01-2011, 08:14 PM
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I would drive the piss out of it and not stress over it. If it's gonna fail - it'll fail no matter what you do.
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Old 09-02-2011, 06:48 AM
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Honestly said : the 996 is a great car. IMS can be replaced it's not alien tech or un obtanium. The RMS if it does go, does suck but it all depends on why. Most 911's of any vintage that have problems tend to be heaps due to deferred maintenance.

Sure like all things mechanical they have soft spots. But if you want a nice machine not über Spartan the 996 in my opinion is what I call the 911 for everyone.
Where I'd say on earlier machines you need to be a special breed for such cars.

The 996's are a lot of fun, comfortable too. Like anything take your time and
go thru a number of cars vs the first thing that comes a long, records are nice but not always indicators of a well kept machine.
Old 09-03-2011, 09:04 AM
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When you buy, budget $1000 to have the LN IMSB installed. Intermediate Shaft IMS Upgrade and Retrofit Kit for Porsche 911, Boxster, and Cayman models
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Old 09-09-2011, 07:52 PM
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Boxster IMS & RMS failure

I recently lost my clutch in my 2000 986 with 60,000 miles.

Upon inspection, Porsche reported that I also had an IMS & a RMS leak, that needed to be addressed immediately.

Total cost for all three issues.....$2400.00

It's not purchasing these amazing vehicles, it's the price of maintenance. While they may be some of the most reliable vehicles on the road, when they need service, they are not cheap to repair.
Old 05-25-2012, 08:44 AM
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Originally Posted by Surfer0114 View Post
I recently lost my clutch in my 2000 986 with 60,000 miles.

Upon inspection, Porsche reported that I also had an IMS & a RMS leak, that needed to be addressed immediately.

Total cost for all three issues.....$2400.00

It's not purchasing these amazing vehicles, it's the price of maintenance. While they may be some of the most reliable vehicles on the road, when they need service, they are not cheap to repair.


This is why preventative maintenance is critical. If your cost includes a new IMS bearing you are doing fine.
Old 05-25-2012, 10:21 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BYprodriver View Post
[/B]

This is why preventative maintenance is critical. If your cost includes a new IMS bearing you are doing fine.
+1
$2,400 for parts & labor on IMS, RMS and Clutch sounds like a deal..
944 clutches alone (P&L) can cost nearly that when not DIY.

Also, $2,400 is like what 4 car payments.. ?
Worth it for such a fine ride.
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Old 05-28-2012, 05:25 PM
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$2400 is not a lot of money for a clutch replacement no matter what you drive.

FWIW I just installed a clutch, flywheel, RS motor mounts, air oil seperator and clutch slave in my car. Parts cost me $2600, but I used a sport clutch which costs more.

If I would have done the bare minimum OEM clutch and new RMW plus a IMS flange (no new bearing no flywheel no AOS no clutch slave) it would have cost $800 in parts. $650 for the clutch kit, 150 for the seals.
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2002 996 - arctic silver - PSS9, H&R sways,X51 oil pan, console delete, AASCO liteweight flywheel, gbox detent, RS motor mounts, 997 shifter. Great car.
past: another 2002 996 and a 1978 SC with-webers-cams-etc.
Old 05-28-2012, 05:36 PM
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I've been looking at 996s
And noticed if I used the search refine ( milage highest >) I found a bunch of
Cars with 100 k plus and no
Replaced engines
Old 05-28-2012, 05:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wtbzanzibar911 View Post
I've been looking at 996s
And noticed if I used the search refine ( milage highest >) I found a bunch of
Cars with 100 k plus and no
Replaced engines
Well, not every owner knows whether his car has had a new engine installed though, and even some of the guys who know might not advertise it as a positive.

There was even a guy here (or maybe it was rennlist) who aked if heshould avoid a car *because* it had a new motor.

The absence of an advertised new motor doesn't mean much. The presence of an advertised ne motor does.
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2002 996 - arctic silver - PSS9, H&R sways,X51 oil pan, console delete, AASCO liteweight flywheel, gbox detent, RS motor mounts, 997 shifter. Great car.
past: another 2002 996 and a 1978 SC with-webers-cams-etc.
Old 05-28-2012, 06:04 PM
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Higher mileage care have less of a chance of a failure. Change oil every 5K miles on daily drivers or every 6 months on a garage queen. Keep the oil level to the top of the stick.

The numbers I read said "10% of the 996 engine failures were IMS related" not 5 to 10% of all 996's.

I read somewhere that alot of the actual IMS failures had one thing in common, poor maintenance, low oil levels and filthy oil.

My opinion, take care of your car, don't drive it like you stole it, after all you didn't steal it and if it granades its on your dime and keep an eye on the dip stick. If the IMS bearing lost its inner seal and the ball bearings are exposed inside the engine it is crucial that the oil level is not low so the bearing get lubricated by the motor oil.

My 996 could pass for showroom brand new, I'd rate it a 9.9 out of 10 and it has 70+K miles. I drive it daily and only use Mobile 1 0w40. The car runs it's coolest with that grade, I've tried 5W40, 10W40 and 15W50, the temp gauge is cooking hot unless its 0W40.
Old 06-01-2012, 04:38 AM
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