Originally Posted by west_minist
It is the hydraulic lashers.
All subies make that sound.
There maybe too much clearance.
Take it to a subaru dealer and get them look @.
The '98 EJ22 has solid lifters.
Excerpt from Technician's Reference Booklet, Boxer Series Engine Module, Module, Module 104, MSA5P0131C:
"The 2.2 liter (SOHC) (Phase 1) has been enhanced starting
with 1997 model year...Another source of high engine friction is the valve train. Hydraulic lash adjusters are always in contact with the
camshaft or valve rockers. The hydraulic pressure of the
lash adjuster must be overcome during operation and the
most critical time of engine start. To overcome this situation
and to contribute to the total reduction of friction loss the
SOHC engines will have solid valve adjusters. The
scheduled service of these valve trains is set at 100,000
miles and is not required during the PDI. The SOHC engine
uses an adjustment screw and locknut."