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Old January 26th, 2022, 06:36 PM   #1
Junior Member
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: san Rafael
Posts: 4
Bring a 986 back to life conundrum

Wow I haven't bene here in over a decade ;-) Cool, still exists !

I have a dilemma... A friend of mine has a decent looking 986S (01 I think) that is out of commission due to laziness and lack of mechanical skills. It has been sitting for over a year but in the past it had all the good stuff done, IMS, RMS, new top, etc... so it's not garbage. I already rescued him once last year with a dead battery and his car stuck against a hedge (no access to the trunk release). Fun !

This time, it won't start, has a code for bad Cats that in the past has come and gone but somehow he passed SMOG resetting it (he says, don't ask me), and is unregistered since he let it lapse as he could not pass smog without another reset, busy with a new baby, Covid, etc...

How do we untangle this mess ? I may end up buying it one day if cheap enough, but probably not as Cats are $$$ and I really do not need another car. He's gonna want to sell it (not an ad, I got first dibs once I make up my mind) I understand to SELL a car you need to pass SMOG. Or do you ?

To pass smog you need to put in new or used cats $$$ - (or some defeating software as I was just reading) but ALSO DRIVE the car some to reset the ODB2 to be test-ready correct ? (I got bit on this recently on an M3 - and his battery was dead recently so I'm certain his ODB2 is not "ready"). How do you drive a car long enough to reset ODB2 if it's not registered ?

This all seems like a gamble for me but at the very least if I can resurrect it and motivate him to keep it a while (I just hate to see a nice car rot to its death) I'd like to help him out. Gonna go read codes, maybe do a service for him, see if we can start it again..."starter clicks" - that's new.

But I am confused as to the sequence of legality/achievability here - can't drive unregistered, can't register without smog, won't pass smog without a drive - LOL, total Catch 22 !! Anyone ever untangle something like that?

Thanks !
(no boxsters at this time, 2013 991)

Last edited by deschodt; January 26th, 2022 at 06:45 PM.
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