The Porsche 911 is the company’s longtime flagship, known for its speed, sleek design, and quality across the board. The 997 series, produced from 2005 to 2012, has distinguished itself within this already highly respected group, quickly becoming the most commercially and critically successful 911 of all time. One of the common problems associated with this series lie with the IMS—Intermediate Shaft—system.
The IMS connects the 997’s crankshaft to its camshaft and is essential to the proper movement of all gears, tires, and various parts in the car. The functions of the IMS are ensured by a number of metal bearings that sit inside of a lubricant-filled rubber boot. Over time, and due to excess heat, cold, or rigorous driving conditions, the boot can become cracked, allowing the lubricant to leak out, and leaving room for engine oil to sink into the bearing house. As this happens, the bearings become hotter and hotter as the friction builds.
If it reaches a critical level, the issues started in the IMS can begin to quickly spread into other areas of the car. As the various metal parts begin to grind and chip away at one another, metal fragments can be sent all the way into the engine, which will utterly destroy the car and potentially cause a life-threatening situation for anyone inside.
The worst part about all of this is that there are no clear telltale signs that the IMS is failing. You might be able to spot some oil leaking halfway between the transmission and the engine, but then again you might not. The safest possible option is to bring your 997 into a local Porsche service garage where an expert can look your vehicle over an tell you whether or not you need to worry about an IMS malfunction.
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