Before returning to the track, an oil service for our Porsche 997

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Update by Tim Suddard to the Porsche 911 Carrera project car
Dec 21, 2022 | Porsche, 997, Oil, 911, Porsche 911, MPT Industries, Oil Change

Before we could return to the track with our new Bridgestone RE-71RS tires and Apex wheels, we needed to do an oil service on our Porsche 997. While it had only been a couple of thousand miles since its last oil change, that was also two years ago.

[200-treadwear tire test | Bridgestone Potenza RE-71RS vs. Falken Azenis RT660]

Experts recommend a 0W40 full synthetic oil for this application, and an oil change on our car requires about 9 quarts–but always confirm with your owner’s manual.

We sourced MPT Thirty-K full-synthetic 0W40 oil along with a factory oil filter. MPT Industries is a boutique oil company that has been in business and promoting to enthusiasts since 1985, and figure $14.95 per quart but less expensive in larger quantities.


When doing any oil change, you should first warm up the car to operating temperature. On a water-cooled 997, we were told to then allow about 20 minutes to fully drain the sump.

The 997 uses a cartridge-style filter, and it’s always safe to use a Porsche brand filter. The part number is 996-107-225-53. Several companies have made these filters for Porsche, so don’t be surprised if the name on the box varies.

You’ll also want a new washer for the drain plug. Removing it takes an 8mm hex wrench.

You don’t want to overfill any engine, so we started with 8 quarts. After warming up the oil, we checked the level–done via the stalk to the left of the steering wheel. We were still about a quart low, so we wound up using all 9 quarts.

While we had the car on the lift, another crucial step when servicing a 996, 997, Cayman or Boxster: Clean out any leaves and debris from the radiator intake. An air blower and vacuum cleaner make this a pretty easy task.

This is also a good time to check you air filter, and we have a K&N replacement on the way. More on that soon.

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frootloop5
frootloop5 None
12/21/22 3:42 p.m.

I first saw the image with the title "Fresh Oil for the Track" and thought "Why would they put fresh oil on the track?"  That's not usually considered a performance enhancing activity.  Maybe a new car control exercise?  Probably not.  smiley

Happy Holidays and Happy New Year!

docwyte
docwyte PowerDork
12/21/22 7:58 p.m.

That air blower and vacuum don't do it to clean out the radiators.  Stuff gets packed into the corners as well as in between the radiator and AC condensers.  You need to remove the front bumper cover, air ducts and then separate the radiators from the AC condensers.  Look at my 996 turbo thread for the pics of what I found on my low mileage car...

GCrites80s
GCrites80s Dork
12/21/22 8:40 p.m.

I seem to recall dealer oil changes on these being $300+.

dps214
dps214 Dork
12/21/22 9:19 p.m.

Probably more than that if you have a dealer do it. This looks like it was probably about $180 in materials. But the oil doesn't need to be that expensive. My cayman oil changes are about $100 all in, but I use amsoil euro blend at like $9/quart.

The thing to do with the radiators is to clean them out real well like docwyte described and then put some kind of screen in the grille openings. Then you just pick the little bit of debris that piles up out of the corner every now and then.

Tyler H
Tyler H GRM+ Memberand UberDork
12/22/22 8:57 a.m.
docwyte said:

That air blower and vacuum don't do it to clean out the radiators.  Stuff gets packed into the corners as well as in between the radiator and AC condensers.  You need to remove the front bumper cover, air ducts and then separate the radiators from the AC condensers.  Look at my 996 turbo thread for the pics of what I found on my low mileage car...

100%  Here's a picture of mine.  The bottom 1.5" was completely plugged with compost and sand.  It would be worth an extra half hour to take a peek if it hasn't been done recently.

docwyte
docwyte PowerDork
12/22/22 10:27 a.m.

Yeah, I spend around $100 in oil/oil filter for mine.  ~9 quarts of M1 and a Mahle filter. 

That's about what I found in my car, same thing packed in the corner of the AC condenser.  So ended up with two huge piles of leaves/debris on either side when I was done.

ShinnyGroove (Forum Supporter)
ShinnyGroove (Forum Supporter) Dork
12/22/22 2:04 p.m.

Porsche gets an A for oil filter design, and a D- for lack of a dipstick.  This would be the easiest oil change ever if it weren't for the stupid electronic oil fill sensor that seems to have roughly 5mL between "too full" and "not full enough".

docwyte
docwyte PowerDork
12/22/22 2:19 p.m.

In reply to ShinnyGroove (Forum Supporter) :

Well, you're not really supposed to have it all the way full on the gauge.  1-2 bars down is where you should set the oil level.  Sadly Porsche is hardly the only car company sending cars out without dipsticks.

ClearWaterMS
ClearWaterMS Reader
12/22/22 9:40 p.m.
ShinnyGroove (Forum Supporter) said:

Porsche gets an A for oil filter design, and a D- for lack of a dipstick.  This would be the easiest oil change ever if it weren't for the stupid electronic oil fill sensor that seems to have roughly 5mL between "too full" and "not full enough".

on my new to me Porsche the car has a canister style oil filter.  Is that inferior to the P-car design in some way?  I purchased a 997.1 /w an LN engineering 4.0l motor in it.  

dps214
dps214 Dork
12/22/22 11:25 p.m.

Canister filter is generally considered an upgrade. Not exactly sure it's better at filtering, but I think it's a bit safer and more robust (the plastic threads on the filter housing sketch me out a little bit every time I tighten it). Maybe cheaper too, or at least more readily available?

Keith Tanner
Keith Tanner GRM+ Memberand MegaDork
12/22/22 11:30 p.m.
GCrites80s said:

I seem to recall dealer oil changes on these being $300+.

No, Hyundais get oil changes. Porsches get oil services. 

ShinnyGroove (Forum Supporter)
ShinnyGroove (Forum Supporter) Dork
12/22/22 11:32 p.m.

I just liked that the oil filter/housing was easy to reach and pointing straight down from the engine so it could be removed without dumping out half a quart of oil on everything.

Colin Wood
Colin Wood Associate Editor
12/23/22 10:23 a.m.

In reply to ShinnyGroove (Forum Supporter) :

Somewhere out there, I'd like to think there's at least one engineer that decided "You know what, I will design the oil filter housing to not only be hard to reach but will also dump oil all over everything when you change the filter."

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