1 – IMS Bearing Upgrades!

A great deal has already been written by owners and journalists alike. Many of these people regaling tales of IMS bearing failures. Do they really fail? Sadly yes. The intermediate shaft (IMS) bearing is housed on the back of the engine directly below the crankshaft. The Porsche factory bearing can overheat (plenty of theories as to why) and in some circumstances can collapse altogether. The associated bits of metal then make their way through the engine, typically blocking oil pathways and causing havoc. The IMS bearing upgrade is a solution we have been fitting for over ten years. The bearings differ from Porsche factory items in that they use cylindrical bearings that can better handle the load exerted by the shaft. They don’t need any extra oil feed and have a 5-year warranty. These are a very popular modification as it takes the fear out of ownership. Prices start from £800 plus VAT.

IMS bearing

2 – Worn Suspension

With the oldest 996 models now approaching 25 years old (where did that time go?!), a common 996 service issue is worn-out suspension. The suspension is a crucial component of your Porsche and has many moving parts. The springs and dampers are in constant use and must deal with everything from temperature fluctuations, awful road surfaces and potholes, road salt and debris, and the extremes of track driving or long-term storage with no use at all (which has its own issues). All these metal components will only have a limited number of cycles to failure, also rubber bushes, bearings and bump stops deteriorate over time.

A full health check on your 996 can be completed for as little as £320 plus vat and will give you a comprehensive 11-page report on the car. This can help you budget for future works and assess what needs to be done and when. Due to the nature of suspension all interacting together, replacing items in axle pairs is a minimum and ideally, a full overhaul of the suspension is advisable for the best results. Once your suspension has been refreshed or upgraded, we can then complete a full geometry setup to ensure it is tailored correctly for your use.

3 – Exhausts

The exhaust system on your 996 is relatively short in length as the engine is already at the back of the car. The exhaust takes the same abuse as noted above from the elements which cause the metal to corrode. The exhaust is made up of manifolds which are bolted up the engine cylinder head exhaust ports, gases pass through a catalytic converter, then to the side boxes or silencers and finally eject through exhausts tips. Along the route of the exhausts, there are flanges (joints) to allow the exhaust to be fabricated in sections and thus easier to take apart. There are also some sleeves and clamps and any corrosion at any of these points allows exhaust gases to escape causing an exhaust blow, which in turn can upset the emissions and cause the engine management light to come on. Thankfully, there is a raft of exhaust upgrades available for the 996 models, giving you plenty of options to either keep with the standard fitment or add a little more soundtrack. The standard cats can become quite restrictive and replacing these with an X-pipe with sports cats can improve the way the engine breathes. Fitting the right exhaust or a combination of exhaust parts can improve engine power and torque.

996 c4s outside RPM

4 – Air/oil separator failure

A large plume of oil smoke coming from the back on your pride and joy on a weekend drive out with your mates? The brain decides the worst has happened and your pistons have finally made a bid for freedom from their oily metal prison! Often this is not the case, and it is the engine air-oil separator that has failed, which is a much less costly remedy. The air-oil separator is designed to remove residual vapour inside the engine and channel it back into the intake manifold to help emissions. If it fails, the separator no longer only takes the residual air inside the engine, but also sucks up oil and puts it through the intake, causing a very impressive plume of smoke that can be seen from mars and a rough running engine. Thankfully, it is a relatively simple fix, only taking only a few hours to replace. It is also a great component to replace preventatively. If you are ever doing work around that part of the engine, or the engine is out of the car for another job.

5 – Slow-cranking on start up

Sometimes on hot (or cold) starting, the car can feel sluggish to crank over. There are a number of issues that can cause this, ranging from a battery that is well past its best, through to bad earthing caused by hidden corrosion. With many years’ experience, the workshop technicians can help diagnose the issue correctly the first time around, rather than start replacing parts at random without really knowing the issue.


To see what we can do to help support your 996 generation of 911, contact our team today on +44 (0)1296 663 824 or send us an enquiry online.