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I'm finding quite a bit of conflicting information on this "upgrade/update." It seems some folks have successfully installed the updated tensioner (with the spring) on pre '01 Boxster's which has eliminated the start-up rattle issue, despite the Porsche TB saying not to "intermix" parts.

What's the real scoop on this? Is Porsche playing it safe by taking this position? Has anyone with a pre-'01 Boxster performed this "upgrade?" Did it eliminate the chain rattle issue on start-up? Any problems to date?

and it made no perceptible difference in startup rattle. However, running a can and a half of Liqui Moly 20004 Hyrdaulic Lifter additive in my oil made a huge difference. It turns out that the tiny oil passages that lubricate the lifters get clogged over time.

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 06/10/2021 05:42PM by Boxsterra. (view changes)
Thanks, so you installed the new version with the spring in the IMS/Crank location? Hmm...Hearing the rattle on my car, I can't imagine something bad isn't happening in there at start up. Perhaps I'll try the Liqui Moly route first. I read that Porsche was going to update their PET to include the new tensioner on all years once the old version is sold out. Interesting.
The cam chain tensioners (there are 3 of them) were upgraded to a newer design but it's not a fundamental difference.

I agree that it was a bit confusing to figure out which ones were the right ones to get.
So, there's evidently this one, which is applicable up to '00:


And this one, that's from '01+:


Note the external spring on the newer version. This purportedly prevents bleed off and keeps the chain under proper tension even after the tensioner loses oil pressure.

Is it the external spring version you installed, or was it the updated version of the original?
But note that they all have springs. The one with no visible spring has a stiff spring on the inside.
OK, thanks for the clarification. So to summarize, the new version of the original has a spring that must be internal to keep tension when there's no oil pressure present, and the later model version has the spring external to the tensioner. Perhaps I'll update the one IMS tensioner to see if it can correct the rattle. The car only has 37K miles on it, so I can't imagine the tensioners are "bad," but I'm thinking the original tensioner is bleeding down, and perhaps the new one will not do so.
The tensioner is filled with oil, which dampens the action of the spring. You prefill them before installing. If your engine doesn't have oil pressure you have bigger problems. The tensioner would have to have a prolonged period without oil (such as a clog) to lose its oil since it's mostly captive. You don't need to replace them to fix a clog in most cases.

That said, If the early ones don't fit a 2001 then I have a set I can sell you. I used them for only a short time before replacing the 1999 engine with a 2001 engine. Since they were new, I took them out when I got rid of the engine.

Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 06/10/2021 07:09PM by Boxsterra. (view changes)
Thanks for the clarification! I have a '98, so the '01+ with the external spring evidently won't work. I'll have to get the newer version of the tensioner for a pre-'01 engine. I've got an oil change due, so I'll replace the IMS tensioner with the new version and see if it quiets things down. I'll also try the liqui Moly in the interim. I've read that you only have to lock the engine at TDC, and don't have to worry about locking the cams, so hopefully it's an easy update.

Greatly appreciate the information/education!!! smileys with beer
To clarify
Boxsterra - 2 years ago
the extras I have were the latest ones available that fit in a 1999 and will similarly fit your car.

That said, I recommend you start with the additive and take it from there. If you end up doing the tensioners, it's really not difficult but I would always personally lock the cams. It's not difficult at all to do.
... is by installing an Accusump.
I've had a 3 qt. one in my car for many years now (over 10).
Although it's designed to eliminate oil starvation during long fast sweepers at the track it works as a pre-oiler as well.
When I switch off the engine, the Accusump will hold 3 qt. of oil under pressure (whatever the oil pressure was when I switched the engine off).
When I'm ready to start the engine I turn on the ignition (without running the starter) and wait for the oil pressure in the Accusump to completely pass the 3 qts of oil through the engine, thus pre-oiling everything.
Once the pressure is down below 5 psi I fire up the starter and the engine kicks over without the chain rattle.
My engine has well over 200K miles and the chains and tensioners have not been replaced, yet with the Accusump it's quiet as a mouse.
Happy Boxstering,

Pedro Bonilla
1998 Boxster 986 - 308,000+ miles: [www.PedrosGarage.com]
PCA National Club Racing Scrutineer - PCA National HPDE Instructor - PCA Technical Committee (Boxster/Cayman)

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