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Old 12-20-2001, 06:08 PM   #1
shortlid
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2003 Legacy GT Sedan
Silver, 4EAT, 42k

Default Tapping '98 EJ22E and Re-circ out

Our '98 Legacy L wagon with the EJ22 and automatic has developed cold weather induced tap at start-up.
When you fire it up in the morn it taps loud enough to hear it in the cabin. Even when the engine warms up to
operating temps it takes a little while before the taping quiets down. The car has 55,000 miles on it we are
running 5W-30 in it and the oil level and is quality fine. What could be the cause?
Also a wind noise at the drivers side mirror area has REDEVELOPED! The Dealer replaced the power drivers
mirror last time to stop the wind noise, under warranty. Now we are out of warranty?

Also the climate control system on our '98 Legacy AL wagon works great, and so do most of the back lights. except the one
that indicated that the HVAC is re-circulating air. The LED or bulb that lights when enacted or not does not light
with the push of the button?

The door trim piece behind the drivers side interior door latch is cracked also, is this a common problem and
is it easily fixed? Thanks everyone.
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Old 12-20-2001, 07:34 PM   #2
Witckraft
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I hate to say it, but that sounds like piston slap. my mom's *soon to be mine* had it and subaru swapped a whole mess of parts, and some even got new shortblocks under warrenty.

Ask the dealer, bug the ***** out of them, mention piston slap

see what they say

Pete
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Old 12-20-2001, 10:40 PM   #3
HIHO
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How loud is the tapping? Can you stand outside of the car and hear it? Alot of people suddenly develope "piston slap" this time of the year. What they think is piston slap really isn't. The sound was always there just not as loud. Cold weather makes the boxer a louder than normal engine. It may not be piston slap. If it is loud like a diesel engine than you might have a problem. Otherwise just take it easy till she warms up and you will be fine.
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Old 12-21-2001, 09:25 AM   #4
Witckraft
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good point, just if it doesnt go away after 20-30 minutes of driving, run it into the dealership, the worst they will say is "nothing's wrong"


Pete
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Old 12-21-2001, 09:55 AM   #5
GN-BOOST
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SHORTLID,

I've got a 98 Legacy Sedan 2.2L w/auto trans. Don't know if it makes you feel better but I've got the same "tapping noise" problem. I even posted here when it started happening. Bought the car just over two years ago with 50k miles. The problems arose a few months after (when it began to get cold out) at about 55k miles. It started making me nervous so...we brought the car into the local Subaru dealership to have it looked at. They told me "That's normal...they all do that when they're cold...That's why they stopped making the 2.2 motor"?. I had a 99 Impreza 2.5 RS (different motor) that didn't do it but...it only had 16k miles on it when I sold it a year ago. I've tried different weight oils...Synthetics...a little Mystery Oil...Duralube...nothing helped? Almost sounds like the hydraulic lifters aren't priming with oil. It's alittle unnerving driving around with it tapping away every morning but I now have 80k on the car and it runs like a champ. Usually quiets down after a few minutes of driving....

GNBOOST
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Old 12-21-2001, 11:03 PM   #6
janikphoto
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Ya know, I had a mazda pickup that made noises like that. It had 154,000 miles on it when I sold it and it still ran great! The u joints went bad because I ran it through a really bad winter, but other than that, it was a nice little truck...
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Old 12-21-2001, 11:29 PM   #7
shortlid
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Silver, 4EAT, 42k

Default thanks

These post were very helpfull, thanks! But, I thought 2.5's ONLY had the piston slap problem. It is good to heard another owner geting the 2.2 to tap at 55k and having 80k on it.
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Old 12-22-2001, 07:53 AM   #8
sovereignmk1
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Default

On the same note, I have a 98 Sedan L. I was told that "noise" is due to Subaru's use of SOLID lifters by many knowledgeable subaru friends and that is a classic subaru sound . Just listen to it compared to an older 80's/90's subaru. I was kinda shocked at first hearing it on mine that first winter, but listening to others I noticed it's there on all Subarus'.


/Mark
1998 Legacy L 2.2L Auto 75k (all fast highway miles though
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Old 12-22-2001, 08:00 AM   #9
sovereignmk1
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oh yeah, On the HVAC. PM me your email and i'll send you a how to replace those blubs behind there. I now have first had experience.

No idea why on the wind noise. Mine is fine. Another no on the crack trim. And with a Hayes and this board. Anything is easy to replace

/Mark
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Old 12-23-2001, 03:02 AM   #10
Velocity
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I've got a '98 L Wagon with 43k on it and it has pretty bad "tapping", especially in the winter, and it DOESN'T go away. It's bad enough where I will be taking it to the dealer soon. Oh well, I may have to trade in for a WRX wagon soon...
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Old 12-23-2001, 08:31 PM   #11
slide
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OHH its only going to get worse and louder. I have the same on my 95. It has solid lifters, I tried everything. Switched out tons of parts. Time for a rebuild. Get ready to start losing power.
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Old 12-31-2001, 10:35 PM   #12
shortlid
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2003 Legacy GT Sedan
Silver, 4EAT, 42k

Default really

I talked to a guy with a'98 that got the tap in cold weather at 55K like me. He has 80k and his EJ22E is runing fine??? How many miles does your '95 have on it.
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Old 01-01-2002, 10:31 AM   #13
Benjamin Tang
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is this noise from the solid lifters a fatal problem? i have a 95 ej22 and i get this noise too in cold weather, but it too also goes away...

ben
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Old 01-01-2002, 12:50 PM   #14
HIHO
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Quote:
Originally posted by HIHO
How loud is the tapping? Can you stand outside of the car and hear it? Alot of people suddenly develope "piston slap" this time of the year. What they think is piston slap really isn't. The sound was always there just not as loud. Cold weather makes the boxer a louder than normal engine. It may not be piston slap. If it is loud like a diesel engine than you might have a problem. Otherwise just take it easy till she warms up and you will be fine.
Like I said earlier the boxer is a noisy engine. So if the tapping is not really loud and quiets or goes away when warmed up you are fine. Just take it easy untill she warms(under 3500 rmps).

The bad cause of tapping is- "Piston Slap"-The reason it is louder when cold is because the pistons contract when cold. They are a little smaller inside the cylinder so they hit the walls a little more. When they warm up they expand and fit the cylinder better. If you have a bad case of "The Slap" your engine will sound like a diesel.

Otherwise it is just normal cold opperating sound.
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Old 01-01-2002, 12:51 PM   #15
sovereignmk1
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Default

Quote:
is this noise from the solid lifters a fatal problem?

No, just a Subaru sound. With solid lifters being cold, they'll make noise and none when warmed up. That's why you hear little if any during summer months. Take a listen to the older GL wagons/legacys, you'll hear it in them too.

/Mark
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Old 01-02-2002, 12:56 AM   #16
Subietonic
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GF5,BDA,BD5, BP5

Default Tapping Sounds

My 99 Legacy Wagon EJ22 automatic (30K miles) makes a gawd awful tapping racket when you start it up from cold or semi-warm (parked but not quite cold yet). It reminds me of my old Peugeot 504 diesel it's that loud. You definitely hear it inside the car and you hear it outside the car too. When I first looked at the car in September (28K miles private pre-owned with every dealer record since day one) and started it up, I immediately shut it down and pulled the dip stick to see if it had oil in it. The oil level was and is fine.

The winter weather here in San Diego has been pretty mild with very few cooler nights and days so I'm not doing any really cold starts. And I don't run the car hard at all... wait 20-30 seconds or so before I drive it off after startup and then wait until the temp gauge is starting to move into the normal range before I start to feed it more go faster pedal.

When I took it to the dealer the week before Christmas for the 30K checkup/maintenance, they couldn't detect it which I figured would be the case. I talk to their Sube technician (20+ years repairing Subes) quite a bit and I would have called him on it and taken it back to him last week except he took Christmas-New Year's week off.

The car is going back to the dealer this Thursday for this issue and some hesitation and shuddering at 2-3K RPMs. I'm insisting they find out what is going on or I'm calling in the regional guy. I believe the hesitation is related to the Anti-knock sensor problems that are common discussion items on these forums. I hate to think what might be causing the tapping/knocking sound. I'll let you all know how it comes out.

Best, Dale
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Old 01-02-2002, 10:58 AM   #17
shortlid
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2003 Legacy GT Sedan
Silver, 4EAT, 42k

Default Anti-knock

I have not heard of this anti-knock sensor hesitation problem. Please explain.
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Old 01-02-2002, 10:58 AM   #18
HIHO
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that just wooped your ass

Default Re: Anti-knock

Quote:
Originally posted by shortlid
I have not heard of this anti-knock sensor hesitation problem. Please explain.
I think this has been a problem with the 2.0. The WRX guys are complaining about it. It is a common problem with forced induction. The forced air and fuel mixture wants to light early so the knock sensor monitors this and makes adjustments. It may be a problem on the 2.5 but I have not heard about it either. But would like to if it is.

Last edited by HIHO; 01-02-2002 at 11:08 AM.
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Old 01-02-2002, 11:23 AM   #19
Subietonic
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Shortlid: I'm not sure where I saw it but I'll do a search later. Got to get to work.
Br, Dale
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Old 01-02-2002, 11:57 AM   #20
Subietonic
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Shortlid: Check out the Hobie Gary's website. Here's the link about hesitation

Hobie Gary

I'm taking this info with me when I go to the dealer tomorrow and talk to the Subie tech. I'll let you know what happens.

Br, Dale
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Old 01-02-2002, 01:37 PM   #21
HIHO
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That is a very cool site. If someone buys the kit please let us know if it works.
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Old 01-06-2002, 09:36 PM   #22
Subietonic
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Default Help may be on the way

Hey all,

Well the 99 Legacy Wagon went back to the dealer on Thursday (actually on Wednesday night but that's a whole nuther story as they say). The tech got to spend the whole day with the car including at least one completely cold start and several other near cold starts. The source of the ticking appears to have been a bad Cam Belt Tensioner (Subaru 13033AA002 Adj AY Belt Tensioner $140.19 retail and $105.15 through SubaruParts.com).

The engine is definitely quieter now that the adjuster has been replaced. I still detect a ticking although significantly diminished compared to the previous startups. It's funny that neiither my '96 OBS with 2.2L (60K) nor my '01 Forester with 2.5L (18K) have this noise. And I know that Subaru engines are not the quietest engines to operate... it's just that this one seems to be more noisy than the other two or even the '99 Legacy Sedan 2.2L (25K) that I'm getting ready to purchase. I'm going to keep really careful notes on my observations on this particular engine from here on out. It could just be an anomoly but something still does not seem right.

Unfortunately, they have not gotten the hesitation out of the acceleration. It was tuned up on 12/20/01 and was horrible until I reset the ECU about three days later. Then it ran somewhat smooter but it still lagged in the 2K-3.5K rpm range. At cruising speeds (>3K rpm) and at WOT it's great. Just coming off of idle and working its way up through the gears it just doesn't connect with me. My wife who typically doesn't even notice stuff like this drove it and asked me what was wrong with the car.

Hope this helps (as far as the ticking noise is concerned).

Best regards, Dale
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Old 01-06-2002, 10:12 PM   #23
GTMAN
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Yup, I have the tapping sound on my 98Gt also. It was there from the 1st winter I had the car. It comes only in winters thought due to the cold weather. I agree with all the folks that say that the apping sound comes from the lifters or valves. I remember reading somewhere on this board that since our engines are flat and the oil is retained on the lower part of the block, upon start and cold weather, it takes some time for the oil to get up to the lifters, etc. So you here the tapping, clacking sounds. But if you drive it for a few minutes, it should go away. Someone even tried doing a slalom type manover to move some of the oil to the the lifter areas quicker, and they said it worked. I have not tried it......cos the car is running the same way it did the day I bought it. Its nasty to know there is no lubrication in those parts for a few minutes, but nobody has ever had engine failure due to this.

I say don't worry about it....its an inherit "feature" of our boxer engines.

GTMAN
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