Sunday, November 22, 2009

Second Step: Tune-up

It was obvious that the Porsche needed a tune-up based on some slight hesitation and lack of zip the car should have had. I went all over for the parts I needed based on price, quality, and convenience.

But before I could do any real work under the hood, I needed some new hood strut supports so it would stay open. I ended up searching on Ebay and found a pretty cheap pair.

Be careful when installing these on a 944 because there is very little clearance between the endpoints of the hood and the windshield
. You'll see in the photo to the right how close the corner of the hood comes to touching the windshield (about 1/4 inch). When lifting the hood to install the hood supports, I cracked the driver side of the windshield without knowing. Terrible design Porsche! Luckily I had to replace it already so no worries.
(click on any photo to enlarge)

For the tune-up, I started with Bosch Platinum +4 spark plugs which don't require gapping and have four ground electrodes for optimal access to the air and fuel mixture. They were not very expensive and I was confident that they'd do the trick.

Next, a new distributor rotor from It was a quick and easy replacement and made a huge different in the car's performance.

Good ignition wires took some time to source. They are expensive
but are vital to how the car
starts and runs. I found a link on one of the many member online forums to some good, cheap Magnecor 8.5mm racing ignition wires with a lifetime warranty. If they ever go bad, you can get a free replacement, what a great deal!

It's important to install ignition wires in the correct order so the car "fires" in the correct order. Other wise the car won't run right and possibly won't even start. Do this by removing one wire at-a-time and replacing that wire with the correct new wire. This way, there is no mix up.

After all was installed and ready-to-go, I started the car and heard a nice, healthy sounding rumble coming from the engine. I took it out for a spin and instantly I felt a better response to the throttle and much more power.

Tune-ups are completely underrated and should be done at the mileage stated in your owner's manual.
All cars are different so refer to your owner's manual for all procedures. If your car isn't running like it used to, give 'er a tune-up! Any costs are worth it in the long run.

After the tune-up, I threw on some new windshield wipers because the car desperately needed them. Cost of two new blades was $10.68

Next, I replaced the cracked windshield. I was able to source 1 salvage windshield with the embedded antenna in the whole tri-state area. Apparently the windshields cracking from the hood is a pretty big problem with these cars. I drove all the way out to Medford Auto Wreckers on Long Island to pick up this $217 piece of glass and drove it home laid out over the passenger seat for an hour and a half drive. It was nerve-racking to say the least but luckily I was able to get it home in one piece.

I had NJ Auto Glass come to my place and install the windshield in about 40 minutes. They did a great job and took the old, broken windshield with them. Not many companies will install glass that you bought from somewhere else but they were happy to do it. They charged me $125 for the installation. Together the windshield cost me $342. Much cheaper than buying a new one for over $500 plus installation.

The totals so far:

$2500 cost of car
$417.55 new tires

$115.92 tune-up
$10.68 wiper blades
$342 windshield + installation
$3386.15 total

Tune in for the next 944 job: Body work!