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Oil Droplets on Paintwork by Side Vents


Photogirl
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Hi all. I've done a Google search on this and have drawn a blank so any thoughts would be appreciated.

This concerns a 2012 Cayman 2.9 987 Gen 2 with 67,000 miles. The new owner took possession of it a week ago from a local and well regarded Porsche independent dealership.

Today I noticed a lot of tiny droplets on the paintwork just inside and at the bottom of the side vents. Not water, it looks like oil. 

Any thoughts as to what it might be? He hasn't had the car long enough to monitor oil consumption.

oil on side vent-1000.jpg

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25 minutes ago, Photogirl said:

Hi all. I've done a Google search on this and have drawn a blank so any thoughts would be appreciated.

This concerns a 2012 Cayman 2.9 987 Gen 2 with 67,000 miles. The new owner took possession of it a week ago from a local and well regarded Porsche independent dealership.

Today I noticed a lot of tiny droplets on the paintwork just inside and at the bottom of the side vents. Not water, it looks like oil. 

Any thoughts as to what it might be? He hasn't had the car long enough to monitor oil consumption.

oil on side vent-1000.jpg

That’s blowy out side, so check  that side of the engine see if there’s is an oil leak in the first instance, and are you sure it’s oil not a cleaning product

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Just drivers side or both ?

drivers side on 987 is “out” near side is “in”.  That said. Unless it’s been de snorked then the business end of it is at the top.  That looks like all the way down the side and below it.  
 

I would guess at “ran over something and got splashed” 

need to figure what it is really.  Might be coolant (looks too clear to be oil to me ) if it’s water like then a quick taste test will tell you.  If it’s “sweet” it’s coolant. 
 

or. Wipe it off and see if it comes back. ? 

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Posted (edited)

Thank you all very much for the responses - hugely appreciated.

bally 4563 - I'll check for leaks

paul P - it's both sides equally. I did wipe one of them a couple of days ago but it's come back. It's definitely not water, it's beady and sticky and doesn't evaporate. I'll go and give it a lick and do the taste test 😝

EVO Chris - I hadn't even thought of that!  I'd better lick the tyres as well so I can compare with the taste of the vent droplets

 

I'll test and report back. 

Edited by Photogirl
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7 minutes ago, Photogirl said:

EVO Chris - I hadn't even thought of that!  I'd better lick the tyres as well so I can compare with the taste of the vent droplets

No need for you to do any licking, we have a professional licker on the forum, @John K.

Granted, his speciality is windows, but i'm sure he will step up to the plate and take one for the team.😂

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Looks like tar spots thrown up from the road to me. Are they hard but come off with a gentle polish or by using one of the tar removal products? Endemic road rash is a problem in this area.

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2 minutes ago, BrianJ said:

Looks like tar spots thrown up from the road to me. Are they hard but come off with a gentle polish or by using one of the tar removal products? Endemic road rash is a problem in this area.

Clear droplets but with some particles of dirt in them - and I now think I know what it is, but am in the process of mouth rinsing with white vinegar  😆

My suspicion is that EVO Chris' pointer was correct. Upon looking at the arch rims, there are some similar looking droplets there too. Funny how there was such an accumulation by the vents rather than along the side of the car, but it does appear that tyre dressing is the likely cause (they are rather slick looking I must say). I've suggested that the owner clean off all the droplets and shampoo off the tyre dressing for now, and see if the residue comes back. 

It's funny how the smallest thing can throw you. 

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If it's only been driven a short while since prep and collection it's probably some residue material they used to prep the car that has been blown out from the crevices, silicone spray or similar. 

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Yep, it definitely looks like preparation product.

On the subject of oils, I've just taken an oil level reading for him and the gauge is showing fully illuminated in its entirety including and above the max point. I'm wondering if it's been over-filled. On my 986 I do of course have a dipstick as well as an electronic readout (which is more detailed than the one on this Cayman). 

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Since it's both I am with you and EVO Chris on tyre dressing or some other prep voodoo snake oil

 

Oil level - the gauge is very sensitive to being level - even a slight slope can cause it to read a section high or low - I now always use the same place to check mine. 

 

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Yes, the oil level reading was taken on a level surface. I'll suggest he tries another location, just to see if there is a difference. If it's still lit up to the very top of the scale then I have to wonder if it's too full.

I also find the coolant level quite hard to read on the Cayman. The little window on my car is very handy. 

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If the coolant level is too low you'll soon find out as the level sensor will show it on the dash. As for oil you can get a simple vacuum pump extractor down the dipstick to suck some out.

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This one hasn't got a dipstick so I think he should take it back to the dealer and let them take some oil out. 

I remember when I first bought my 986 - it was putting out huge puffs of white smoke on a cold start, wafting all the way up the road. I looked at the oil and the gauge read above the top mark even when cold, so I went to my local indi and had an oil change done after which the level then sat where it should - no more smoke on startup. That said, this Cayman doesn't smoke at all.

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I have just had this area of my car painted to get rid of a bit of gravel rash. The paint shop painted it three times because they got a chemical reaction the first two times. He asked me had I used a silicon spray to which I replied I had only just bought the car (from a dealer), it is all start to make sense as a result of this thread.

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17 hours ago, Paul P said:

 

Oil level - the gauge is very sensitive to being level - even a slight slope can cause it to read a section high or low - I now always use the same place to check mine. 

 

He's now tried three level surfaces the the gauge is still fully illuminated to above the max. He called the dealer this morning who assured him they know these cars inside out and it hadn't been over-filled, but as a precaution/peace of mind he's going to drop the car in to have a small amount taken out. 

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19 hours ago, BrianJ said:

Looks like tar spots thrown up from the road to me. Are they hard but come off with a gentle polish or by using one of the tar removal products? Endemic road rash is a problem in this area.

I thought that but OP is saying it wipes off and is more liquid

Edited by the baron
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57 minutes ago, Photogirl said:

He's now tried three level surfaces the the gauge is still fully illuminated to above the max. He called the dealer this morning who assured him they know these cars inside out and it hadn't been over-filled, but as a precaution/peace of mind he's going to drop the car in to have a small amount taken out. 

Good call to get peace of mind for sure.

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On the subject of oil level readings:  After having my 986 serviced at my local indi a couple of weeks ago I checked the oil level (at the correct warm temperature) and it was where I like it to be on the electronic gauge, a little below the max mark. Today I was showing the Cayman owner how my gauge differs from his - but once illuminated mine read completely full (to the notch above 'max'). Odd, given that it was cold. So I pulled out the dipstick, cleaned it, reinserted and took a reading which showed the oil level well above maximum. I always do this in my garage which is level. Hard to understand why they would have over-filled it, so I'm a bit baffled (and the Cayman owner is even more baffled than he was yesterday). At some point fairly soon I will be going to get a suspension ball joint seen to so I'll ask them for an opinion on the oil.

I'm now wondering how reliable the gauges and dipsticks are, but will retest both over the coming days.

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The sump will have a max capacity. If you fill up based on this then you have to make sure you drain and extract the same amount of oil from the system and filter. More normally when you drain the oil, while it might state say 8.5l to fill up, you might only get say 7.75l out because some will still be stuck in there of there may not have been 8.5l to begin with. If you add 8.5l to the already 0.775l still in there then of course it will be overfilled. 

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Yes, I always assumed they measured what came out and put in the same, rather than the 'dry capacity' which as you say is 8.5 litres. 

As today's measurements were cold, I'll re-measure at the right temperature next time I drive. From what I can recall the electronic gauge always reads a little lower when the car is warmed up.

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It will read a bit lower once warm as oil has circulated around the engine by then rather than all/most sitting in the sump.

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8 hours ago, Paul P said:

Good call to get peace of mind for sure.

All done. The dealer was very nice - they removed 500ml of oil to test where they were at, and then added back 300ml. The level is now to one full block below max. Interesting that 200ml is the difference between full above max and one block under (I thought it might be a bit more). 

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On 7/21/2021 at 7:37 PM, Terryg said:

I have just had this area of my car painted to get rid of a bit of gravel rash. The paint shop painted it three times because they got a chemical reaction the first two times. He asked me had I used a silicon spray to which I replied I had only just bought the car (from a dealer), it is all start to make sense as a result of this thread.

That doesn't surprise me. Silicones can be horrible to remove, totally different to oils and waxes (as anybody who's used dimethicone-based hair products will know). I would try Meguiar's Extra Strength All Purpose Cleaner on the area first (this stuff removes just about anything, without being harmful) then I wipe the area with alcohol - then repeat.

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15 minutes ago, Photogirl said:

That doesn't surprise me. Silicones can be horrible to remove, totally different to oils and waxes (as anybody who's used dimethicone-based hair products will know). I would try Meguiar's Extra Strength All Purpose Cleaner on the area first (this stuff removes just about anything, without being harmful) then I wipe the area with alcohol - then repeat.

Hi, yeah I agree, during my years with Snap On tools I heard many a body shop complaining, in this case it was the problem of the body shop painting my car. I picked a really good guy with lots of testimonials and the highest price (naturally), he did a great job. I always laugh when I see people saying they got a good job done for £250 or something similar, paint hides poor prep..... for a while!

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