How do I know if a car has a single row IMS bearing?
According to IMS Solutions, the single-row bearings were phased in during
2000-01. If I have the VIN #, how can I find out which bearing the 996
Carrera I'm considering has?
I recommend reading this article ---- http://www.oregonpca.org/resources/ims-bearing-the-full-story/
or go to the Porsche dealer's parts department- old school
Thanks Full_of_Regrets but I read it. Its almost identical to this one http://theimssolution.com/ims-101/. IMS solutions says the only way to tell is to take it apart. This can't be true with German reputation for record keeping. Thanks also jamnblues, but if the parts department has the info, shouldn't there be someone/someplace at Porsche USA who can look it up or connect you to a database?
If a 2000, the chances are you have a the dual row bearing, but it is not certain. I had an 04 C4S that I took apart myself to replace the bearing. When I got the flywheel off, I saw that my bearing was the non-replaceable part. My engine had been replaced earlier in life with a later remanufactured engine, but Porsche had no records of it.
Would it not be easier to find a car with bearing replaced? Or, move to the 997? I owned an 04 996 Anniversary car. Purchased in an auction with 72K miles. Sold it with 96K, original bearing. Still running. Some luck involved, I suppose. However, their is a lot of hype out there as well. Good luck!
997 also had IMS bearing issues until 2009. Very few cars actually suffered IMS failure (supposedly a few percent) but the issue is so widely known that everyone is scared of it. Just treat it like a maintenance item and replace it when the clutch is due.
I did my 2000 996 Convertible at a shop. The head mechanic said it probably had a single row bearing. Turned out it had a double row bearing. So you never know. Replaced it with a double row ceramic bearing, along with a new clutch. You do need special tools to do it correctly. The peace of mind is worth it. Good Luck!
Don't rush out to replace it. If the car has frequent oil changes and the millage is NOT low for the year, this decreases the chance of an IMS bearing failure. The car needs to be driven and often with fresh oil. Use 5-40 (not 0-40) oil. Change the IMS bearing when the clutch is due. In the meantime, change oil every 5K miles and use a magnetic oil drain plug. Carefully inspect plug & filter at every oil change for steel filings that could warn of IMS bearing failure pending. (steel & plastic bits).
You don't know if it's a single or double row until you take it out. If you check your magnetic drain plug and it's got metal on it, it's too late. It's a sealed bearing, so no crankcase oil ever gets to it before it lets go. 5w 0w 10w etc., it doesn't matter, no oil reaches it until it falls apart. Then the drain plug will collect some bits and pieces, a little too late. Don't put if off unless you know for sure it won't blow. Pic is of my 996 with new double row ceramic open bearing.
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