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Old 08-15-2010, 11:07 PM   #1
thefultonhow
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Default EJ253 into EJ251 car

My brother's EJ251 engine in his 2001 Forester (160k) is burning oil at a rate of a quart every 700-800 mi. It seems to me that its days are numbered, and I don't have enough confidence in my mechanical abilities to do a rebuild. I have, however, done engine swaps before. I found a super-low mileage EJ253 from a 2006 Baja locally for cheap. Will it be possible to do the swap, considering the AVCS on the intake valves and the use of drive-by-wire and a MAF instead of throttle cable and MAP?
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Old 08-16-2010, 01:42 AM   #2
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Yes. But you will have to swap out dbw throttle and components or just swap the heads and run the block. All ej253 blocks are the same. It's the heads that have the better cams. If you can do an engine swap you can change the heads and torque to spec since engines will be out of car. Head gaskets will need changing. Up for a better copper or metal gasket while your at it. Haven't seen any issues with 2006+ head gaskets but might aswell change it. Mine are still awesome on the 06 but I only have 17k on engine but I spirit drive a bit.
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Old 08-16-2010, 08:44 AM   #3
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Can I just not hook up the AVCS stuff and run on the low cams? I know it's not optimal, but it would be easiest to not have to swap heads, and it's possible part of the oil consumption issue on my brother's car is through the valve seals or something. I have no problem swapping out the DBW stuff; I assume the most I would have to do is switch the throttle body.
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Old 08-16-2010, 09:13 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thefultonhow View Post
Will it be possible to do the swap, considering the AVCS on the intake valves and the use of drive-by-wire and a MAF instead of throttle cable and MAP?
Just to clarify, it's not AVCS, it's AVLS - variable lift, not variable timing.

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Originally Posted by VIsubi View Post
... but I spirit drive a bit.
Is "spirit driving" like ghost riding?

Quote:
Originally Posted by thefultonhow View Post
Can I just not hook up the AVCS stuff and run on the low cams?
My impression is that the low lift cams are quite low, to the point that I think the car would be a dog without having the high lift capability. The good news is that the AVLS is basically just ON or OFF, so you can use an RPM-triggered window switch (like drag racers use for NOS) to trigger the AVLS solenoid. That part's pretty easy. I'm not sure how well your stock non-AVLS ECU would react to the sudden change in cam lift (and sudden change in airflow).

Quote:
Originally Posted by thefultonhow View Post
I have no problem swapping out the DBW stuff; I assume the most I would have to do is switch the throttle body.
And figure out mounting the throttle cable.

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Old 08-16-2010, 09:24 AM   #5
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Why dont you just swap EVERYTHING and have the EJ253 ECU run the thing? you are getting the motor, so get the ECU make your life easier. Why would you want to rig the AVLS to run off a window switch when you have a ECU that will do it properly and worry free for many miles?
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Old 08-16-2010, 09:32 AM   #6
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Well, will the engine harness from the Baja connect up to the Forester body harness? Also, doesn't the 06 Baja use an immobilizer key?

EDIT: JK, the Baja did not use an immobilizer ever: https://subaru.locksmithsdrm.com/sr-...t_key_info.pdf

EDIT2: My brother's Forester is 5MT and the Baja is 4EAT. Won't that be a problem for the ECU?
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Old 08-16-2010, 09:40 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thefultonhow View Post
Well, will the engine harness from the Baja connect up to the Forester body harness? Also, doesn't the 06 Baja use an immobilizer key?
Nope the Baja doesn't have the engine immobilizer which is odd they use the standard side cut keys if I am correct. The harness should swap fairly easy and make your life easy
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Old 08-16-2010, 09:45 AM   #8
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Even though the Baja is auto and my brother's Forester is manual?
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Old 08-16-2010, 03:37 PM   #9
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Even though the Baja is auto and my brother's Forester is manual?
?????
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Old 08-16-2010, 04:10 PM   #10
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Now it comes out just do a head swap and intake manifold swap and plug it back into the Forester harness
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Old 08-16-2010, 04:13 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by GEE-OTTO View Post
Now it comes out just do a head swap and intake manifold swap and plug it back into the Forester harness
Bah. What do you think, is that cheaper or more expensive than a bottom end rebuild? The guy wants $800.
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Old 08-16-2010, 06:31 PM   #12
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you can buy newly remanufactured ECU's for $269 with a core. Another option if it turns into a big problem
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Old 08-16-2010, 09:10 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thefultonhow View Post
Bah. What do you think, is that cheaper or more expensive than a bottom end rebuild? The guy wants $800.
unless the guy does subaru rebuilds day in and day out, i doubt it will ever be the same.
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Old 08-16-2010, 09:16 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by naimouasta View Post
unless the guy does subaru rebuilds day in and day out, i doubt it will ever be the same.
It's a longblock with 34k that's never been disassembled... why would his experience with Subarus affect the condition of the internals?

Also, I don't do Subaru rebuilds day in and day out, but I'm not about to pay someone to do a professional rebuild on a 10-year-old car with 160,000 mi that's worth maybe $4,000 on a good day. It's going to be me feeling my way and consulting the FSM a lot, just like I did on my first engine swap (which took 3.5 weeks but started up right away and I only had to fix a couple minor things afterward, since I went by the book. Obviously subsequent engine swaps/clutch jobs/etc. have taken far less time).
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Old 08-16-2010, 11:49 PM   #15
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take the longblock from the new engine and put it on old intake manifold / etc... and move over all the accessories.... so no real wiring to do...

that's what i did.... put a 2006 2.5i engine in my 99rs.... my mechanic disconnected the avcs.... and car easily past emissions.... was cheaper than doing timing belts / headgasket fix.
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Old 08-16-2010, 11:50 PM   #16
thefultonhow
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin2 View Post
take the longblock from the new engine and put it on old intake manifold / etc... and move over all the accessories.... so no real wiring to do...

that's what i did.... put a 2006 2.5i engine in my 99rs.... my mechanic disconnected the avcs.... and car easily past emissions.... was cheaper than doing timing belts / headgasket fix.
How's the top-end power? Worse than the EJ25D? If so, how much worse?
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Old 08-16-2010, 11:51 PM   #17
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was the same i guess.... didn't see any difference.
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Old 08-17-2010, 08:49 AM   #18
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Based on that, I think I am going to buy this. I think I can probably sell sensors and maybe the intake manifold to make some money back, and maybe sell the old longblock for a couple hundred as a rebuildable engine. So it seems like this makes sense from a financial/labor standpoint if I can use the 2006 heads on the low cam profiles without issues.
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Old 08-17-2010, 12:22 PM   #19
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thats what i did..... sold the 2006 intake manifold to a friend for $75, sold the old longblock for $200... so new engine with 15k miles was essentially $850 for me..
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Old 08-17-2010, 02:41 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thefultonhow View Post
It's a longblock with 34k that's never been disassembled... why would his experience with Subarus affect the condition of the internals?

Also, I don't do Subaru rebuilds day in and day out, but I'm not about to pay someone to do a professional rebuild on a 10-year-old car with 160,000 mi that's worth maybe $4,000 on a good day. It's going to be me feeling my way and consulting the FSM a lot, just like I did on my first engine swap (which took 3.5 weeks but started up right away and I only had to fix a couple minor things afterward, since I went by the book. Obviously subsequent engine swaps/clutch jobs/etc. have taken far less time).
o i'm sorry. i thought you were talking about the bottom end rebuild.
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Old 02-10-2011, 10:42 AM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robin2 View Post
take the longblock from the new engine and put it on old intake manifold / etc... and move over all the accessories.... so no real wiring to do...

that's what i did.... put a 2006 2.5i engine in my 99rs.... my mechanic disconnected the avcs.... and car easily past emissions.... was cheaper than doing timing belts / headgasket fix.

Robin,

If I'm reading this correctly, I think you did what I'm looking for answers for on if it will work. I have an 05 Legacy and putting in a motor from an 06 Impreza. The 06 has AVLS. Are you saying you dropped in the newer motor without hooking up any of the active valve stuff, swapped over your intakes and everything runs OK and the car is not a dog? I don't want to mess with swapping ECUs and such if I don't have to. Can you elaborate more and give us an update on your car since posting this?
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Old 01-04-2012, 12:29 PM   #22
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Old post, but I'm in a similiar situation.

I have EJ251 heads/intake and I'd like to use a newer EJ253 block. I have the 253 heads, but nothings else from it(no ecu, harness, intake etc).

Has anyone actually swapped the 251 heads onto a 253 block? Will the valves interfere? I read on rs25 on one old post that they will, but his heads had been decked at least twice. I plan to use the 6 star mls gaskets that may gain me precious 1000th's.

This thing is my only car and it's down so I'd really appreciate any help if you guys have the info, in the mean time I'll keep searching online.

Thanks!
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Old 01-04-2012, 12:43 PM   #23
thefultonhow
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The intake manifold will work on EJ253 heads. I know because I did this swap in July and it's running fine. Not sure on EJ251 heads onto an EJ253 block though. I had the complete engine.
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Old 01-04-2012, 12:58 PM   #24
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251 heads do not work on 253 block.
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Old 12-14-2012, 06:18 AM   #25
-] Kenpachi [-
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But how could I hook up the avls to a switch, cause mine drinks a lot of gaz.
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