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Old 03-22-2013, 12:34 AM   #1
albabanshee
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Exclamation 09 2.5i Spun Bearing. Need help/advice!

I recently spun a bearing in my impreza 2.5i (just rounded 110k miles)... coming over Fremont Pass in Colroado.

I was climbing up to the peak and the bearing went. Checked the oil right away and it was bone dry, and due to my remote location I was forced to drive down the mountain to the nearest gas station about 15 miles away. Put two quarts in and drove home, and when my mechanic and I checked the oil the following morning it was overflowing and upon start up, he diagnosed the spun bearing.

Being that im now in the market for a new engine, and an sti swap is way beyond my budget and my car is in a no-trade-in condition, what options do I have, or what kind of upgrades/mods would be ideal to perform during the engine replacement? Any hope for an engine upgrade of sorts?

Also, what are some things I should really look for in a used engine? Ive never had to swap engines, or perform maintenance of this scale.

Anything and everything would help
Cheers, Brett
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Old 03-22-2013, 01:09 AM   #2
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Hey, you came to a good place for suggestions if you weed through some of the none sense that will come...

Any way, first off what oil were you using and how long between oil changes? Had the engine been burning oil at all? Were you checking it at least once a week? Trying to form a basis for how you were maintaining your car up to this point.

Any engine for your 09 2.5i impreza is not going to be cheap due to your car still being fairly new and some of the extra goodies that come on this NA engine.

So, right now you are looking for a replacement to be in the $2000 - $3000 tops maybe Rebuilding might be a little cheaper depending on who does it.
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Old 03-22-2013, 03:11 AM   #3
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As far as maintenance and oil, i've been running Royal Purple synthetic fluids in practically the entire car. I was going about 5-7k miles an oil change, but my mechanic says the engine runs so clean and the oil comes out purple still. So ive been running about 10k miles more recently between changes and the oil still looks exceptionally clean. But... I will admit... due to personal situations the past couple months... ive gone about 12k+ since my last change, but its always ran so clean, and ive never even had a hiccup out of the engine, nor smelled like burning fluid smell ever.

As far as a straight across replacement engine, ive come across a few reasonably priced blocks, one with 44k miles for $1300 and one with 100k miles for $1700. And the quotes ive received for a rebuild is about $2500+...
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Old 03-22-2013, 03:30 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by albabanshee View Post
As far as maintenance and oil, i've been running Royal Purple synthetic fluids in practically the entire car. I was going about 5-7k miles an oil change, but my mechanic says the engine runs so clean and the oil comes out purple still. So ive been running about 10k miles more recently between changes and the oil still looks exceptionally clean. But... I will admit... due to personal situations the past couple months... ive gone about 12k+ since my last change, but its always ran so clean, and ive never even had a hiccup out of the engine, nor smelled like burning fluid smell ever.

As far as a straight across replacement engine, ive come across a few reasonably priced blocks, one with 44k miles for $1300 and one with 100k miles for $1700. And the quotes ive received for a rebuild is about $2500+...
What "weight" of the royal purple oil were you running? Is your car manual or auto?

So, not to sound like a jerk, but you ruined the engine in your car because of the royal purple oil. The 5w30 and 10w30 have been shown to shear down rather quickly in a subaru engine and especially a turbo one and get burned quickly and do not protect the bearings not after 2k miles. There's oil analyses that prove this. For the price of the royal purple there are WAY better options for cheaper than this oil. If you are doing 5-7k oil changes and the oil is coming out clean, then that is possibly not a good thing. Newer engines with tighter clearances run cleaner, however, one particular job of an oil is to clean the inside of the engine and if the oil is coming out clean after that long as in 1k miles it might not be cleaning like it should. One thing you need to understand is that if an oil darkens up not necessarily gets dirtier after 5k miles as an example, then it is doing its job of cleaning an engine on the inside. If it is coming out clean between 3k and 5k miles then it should be ok then. But, so you know there are two sides to this as you can see.

For the rear diff, there's cheaper options as well as for the tranny depending if your car is an auto or manual.

Is your car still under any type of warranty at all? I guess your next engine won't be covered then? But I need to know a few things before I will give you some suggestions on a few much better oils to run, ok

Last edited by subi400; 03-22-2013 at 03:37 AM.
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Old 03-22-2013, 07:34 AM   #5
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The discussion about what oil and how often is a moot point since the engine is already toast. However, I wouldn't run any royal purple crap in the next engine. If you want to go 8k miles between changes you will have to use a syn like amsoil AND and syn filter. Judging oil condition by appearance at draining is not a good practice. Try a UOA every other change or so on your next engine if you want to monitor how well the oil is working.

There is a big subaru engine overhaul/exchange company in CO called Colorado Component Remanufactured or something. Www.ccrengines.com
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Old 03-22-2013, 01:41 PM   #6
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What "weight" of the royal purple oil were you running? Is your car manual or auto?

So, not to sound like a jerk, but you ruined the engine in your car because of the royal purple oil. The 5w30 and 10w30 have been shown to shear down rather quickly in a subaru engine and especially a turbo one and get burned quickly and do not protect the bearings not after 2k miles. There's oil analyses that prove this. For the price of the royal purple there are WAY better options for cheaper than this oil. If you are doing 5-7k oil changes and the oil is coming out clean, then that is possibly not a good thing. Newer engines with tighter clearances run cleaner, however, one particular job of an oil is to clean the inside of the engine and if the oil is coming out clean after that long as in 1k miles it might not be cleaning like it should. One thing you need to understand is that if an oil darkens up not necessarily gets dirtier after 5k miles as an example, then it is doing its job of cleaning an engine on the inside. If it is coming out clean between 3k and 5k miles then it should be ok then. But, so you know there are two sides to this as you can see.

For the rear diff, there's cheaper options as well as for the tranny depending if your car is an auto or manual.

Is your car still under any type of warranty at all? I guess your next engine won't be covered then? But I need to know a few things before I will give you some suggestions on a few much better oils to run, ok
Its an automatic with no aspsiration, and ive just been running what the factory recommends, 5w-30. And definitely no warranty. 30k+ miles a year burns through a warrranty pretty fast.lol.

And I do appreciate your straight forwardness regarding the oil and cause.
That's why I joined NASIOC, to get real answers and solutions and no BS Its ironic to me that I have engine failure due to oil, Ive always thought I was pretty on top of it, guess i thought wrong....

I had been recommended amsoil as well as royal purple when i first switched to synthetic fluids, but surprisingly, amsoil is kind of challenge to find in my town, so I opted for the royal purple. I would definitely appreciate any advice or recommendations on future synthetic oils. I just don't want to skimp on quality when it comes to the life/blood of my car. Im also running it in my rear diff and Transmission, sounds like i should probably get that outta there too?
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Old 03-22-2013, 01:44 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by RaceFaceXC View Post
The discussion about what oil and how often is a moot point since the engine is already toast. However, I wouldn't run any royal purple crap in the next engine. If you want to go 8k miles between changes you will have to use a syn like amsoil AND and syn filter. Judging oil condition by appearance at draining is not a good practice. Try a UOA every other change or so on your next engine if you want to monitor how well the oil is working.

There is a big subaru engine overhaul/exchange company in CO called Colorado Component Remanufactured or something. Www.ccrengines.com
UOA?

And when you say "syn filter," you mean an oil filter designed for synthetic fluids, im guessing?

I apologize for the noobness... Im still in the learning process
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Old 03-22-2013, 08:09 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by albabanshee View Post
Its an automatic with no aspsiration, and ive just been running what the factory recommends, 5w-30. And definitely no warranty. 30k+ miles a year burns through a warrranty pretty fast.lol.

And I do appreciate your straight forwardness regarding the oil and cause.
That's why I joined NASIOC, to get real answers and solutions and no BS Its ironic to me that I have engine failure due to oil, Ive always thought I was pretty on top of it, guess i thought wrong....

I had been recommended amsoil as well as royal purple when i first switched to synthetic fluids, but surprisingly, amsoil is kind of challenge to find in my town, so I opted for the royal purple. I would definitely appreciate any advice or recommendations on future synthetic oils. I just don't want to skimp on quality when it comes to the life/blood of my car. Im also running it in my rear diff and Transmission, sounds like i should probably get that outta there too?
I didn't want to sound like a jerk, but subaru engines are stubborn when it comes to oil and such... each engine has it's own attitude

I have seen some threads posted about 05-07 impreza and some newer NA engines killing rod bearings due to the oil being used, not necessarily being low. Amsoil is too pricey and not worth it unless you really want to stretch it out and go 15k + miles on an oil change... The problem with most 5w30 gf-5 rated energy conserving oils today is they are made to shear down as had previous stated to help with fuel economy. But, Subaru engines don't like oil that shears down... It gets past the rings and gets burned over a period of time like 1500 to 3k miles. So, using an oil that has been proven to not shear down a bunch and keep its stability is what is needed.

If you really want to stay with a synthetic oil, I am going to suggest M1 0w40, shell rotella T-6 5w40 or a good none synthetic oil such as Valvoline Maxlife high mileage 5w30. For the rear diff, any gl-5 rated gear oil will work such as valvoline 75w90 or coastal 75w90 as examples to save some money. However, the auto tranny you would have to play around with as I am not up to par yet with what fluids work well other than subaru synthetic ATF.

For the oil filter, Amsoil makes a nice synthetic media type of filter but, for the price there are a few cheaper options. How much room is around your oil filter? If you have enough room, I going to suggest the PureOne Purelator oil filter part # PL14460 which has the proper 23 psi bypass spec that subaru states for an oil filter. I get the same filter at the Fred Meyer here but it might be different where you live. UOA means "used oil analysis".

What type of driving do you do and how many miles do you normally put on your car in a week/month?
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Old 03-23-2013, 12:10 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by albabanshee View Post

UOA?

And when you say "syn filter," you mean an oil filter designed for synthetic fluids, im guessing?

I apologize for the noobness... Im still in the learning process
UOA is a Used Oil Analysis. There are several labs that will perform various uoa tests for ab reasonable fee. Blackstone is the one I use. Don't read too much into the #s specifically, just compare the changes from one uoa to the next and track trends. A few numbers can tell you how well an oils additive package is holding up, and how the anti shear and viscosity compares to the oil when it is new. They also tell you in s nutshell if you could run the oil longer without much deterioration in the protection and lubrication properties it offers. If you do extend the interval between oil changes you should always have an UOA done to be sure it performing how you expect.

Synthetic filter refers to a filter with a synthetic filtering media. A good synthetic media can filter a finer particle with the same pressure drop across the filter barrier. It can also hold much more debris than an organic filter media like cellulose. A good filter is just as important as a good oil when extending oil drain intervals to long distances.
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Old 04-01-2013, 08:05 PM   #10
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If you really want to stay with a synthetic oil, I am going to suggest M1 0w40, shell rotella T-6 5w40 or a good none synthetic oil such as Valvoline Maxlife high mileage 5w30. For the rear diff, any gl-5 rated gear oil will work such as valvoline 75w90 or coastal 75w90 as examples to save some money. However, the auto tranny you would have to play around with as I am not up to par yet with what fluids work well other than subaru synthetic ATF.

For the oil filter, Amsoil makes a nice synthetic media type of filter but, for the price there are a few cheaper options. How much room is around your oil filter? If you have enough room, I going to suggest the PureOne Purelator oil filter part # PL14460 which has the proper 23 psi bypass spec that subaru states for an oil filter. I get the same filter at the Fred Meyer here but it might be different where you live. UOA means "used oil analysis".

What type of driving do you do and how many miles do you normally put on your car in a week/month
I apologize for my delay in response, been busy with in town relatives...

But would you recommend synthetic over non, or vice versa? and I believe ive been running purelator pure one already.

And I will say I am a "sprited" driver... but I wouldn't call myself speedracer ha. I do a lot of commuting around the state so I average anywhere from 1k-2k a month. I got the car in summer of 09 and im at about 110k... not to mention that cars been through every weather extreme imaginable, practically.
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Old 04-01-2013, 11:15 PM   #11
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i have seen low mileage engines for 1300-2000 if you dont want to go for the STI swap
will be cheaper and quicker than a rebuild.
also dont run over priced oil they are about as effective as a electric supercharger.

use a high quality correct weight oil for the duty you give your engine with a high quality filter, no need to dump 50 bucks of "liquid gold" into a pretty much stock engine
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Old 04-01-2013, 11:17 PM   #12
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Synthetic filter refers to a filter with a synthetic filtering media. A good synthetic media can filter a finer particle with the same pressure drop across the filter barrier. It can also hold much more debris than an organic filter media like cellulose. A good filter is just as important as a good oil when extending oil drain intervals to long distances.
if the engine has alot of blow-by then a filter that catches more will clog quicker. the fact you can get a high quality filter and oil for $20 on sale and $30 for MSRP id rather just change the oil every 3,000 miles
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Old 04-01-2013, 11:56 PM   #13
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Love how oil is hot topic in this thread about a toasted bottom end Who gives a Shizzle about oil a this point? Op ignore the oil banter and focus on the engine replacement

Replacement engines aren't that difficult to find for the 06-09 Impreza as you can use any one from a 2.5i (Forester, Legacy, OB, Impreza). If you find a whole low mileage engine with confirmed operational status a simple swap could save you time and money.
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Old 04-02-2013, 02:55 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by GEE-OTTO View Post
Love how oil is hot topic in this thread about a toasted bottom end Who gives a Shizzle about oil a this point? Op ignore the oil banter and focus on the engine replacement

Replacement engines aren't that difficult to find for the 06-09 Impreza as you can use any one from a 2.5i (Forester, Legacy, OB, Impreza). If you find a whole low mileage engine with confirmed operational status a simple swap could save you time and money.
You are wrong, because what I was trying to find out was his habits for maintenance, driving, oil change intervals, oil brand and weight being used because getting another low mileage engine but using the "wrong" oil again could result in the same mess he is in right now.
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Old 04-02-2013, 03:00 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by albabanshee View Post
I apologize for my delay in response, been busy with in town relatives...

But would you recommend synthetic over non, or vice versa? and I believe ive been running purelator pure one already.

And I will say I am a "sprited" driver... but I wouldn't call myself speedracer ha. I do a lot of commuting around the state so I average anywhere from 1k-2k a month. I got the car in summer of 09 and im at about 110k... not to mention that cars been through every weather extreme imaginable, practically.
With how good dino oils are now, you can't go wrong with a good one like Valvoline Maxlife high mileage. But, if you really want to stick with a synthetic I would suggest to use the M1 0w40. It has been prove to hold up to about par with the Shell rotella T-6 5w40. For how many miles you put on the car in a month and how you drive your, using a good synthetic probably would be fine if you want to pay just a bit more and get slightly better overall protection. If you are using a purelator oil filter then check to see what the part number is and let me know.

Have a good one!
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Old 04-02-2013, 03:36 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by subi400 View Post
You are wrong, because what I was trying to find out was his habits for maintenance, driving, oil change intervals, oil brand and weight being used because getting another low mileage engine but using the "wrong" oil again could result in the same mess he is in right now.
Quote:
Originally Posted by GEE-OTTO View Post
Love how oil is hot topic in this thread about a toasted bottom end Who gives a Shizzle about oil a this point? Op ignore the oil banter and focus on the engine replacement

Replacement engines aren't that difficult to find for the 06-09 Impreza as you can use any one from a 2.5i (Forester, Legacy, OB, Impreza). If you find a whole low mileage engine with confirmed operational status a simple swap could save you time and money.
I do appreciate both sides of this discussion, I want to make sure I do whatever I can to hopefully prevent this from ever happening again, but at the same time nothin I can do now...

I've definitely decided that a full sti swap is not an option for me due to financial and daily driver limitations. But something im considering is replacing the block and selling the car and buying an older generation wrx or sti...

and in regards to oil, ill probsbly stick with a good, cheaper dino oil... I feel foolish for succumbing to that dern purple bottle lol
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Old 04-02-2013, 05:35 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by albabanshee View Post
I do appreciate both sides of this discussion, I want to make sure I do whatever I can to hopefully prevent this from ever happening again, but at the same time nothin I can do now...

I've definitely decided that a full sti swap is not an option for me due to financial and daily driver limitations. But something im considering is replacing the block and selling the car and buying an older generation wrx or sti...

and in regards to oil, ill probsbly stick with a good, cheaper dino oil... I feel foolish for succumbing to that dern purple bottle lol
Exactly my point not to trash anyone else but the engine is gone why chat about oils As far as replacing you mean replace the bottom end, swap heads then trade? 09 2.5i has a decent value, if you dont owe much. So you could trade for something else or just sell outright.

Lesson learned, so that is that. Have you got any good leads on engines or bottom ends? have you thought about a new bottom end and just keeping the car? You can buy assembled new bottom ends for cheaper than you think!


Good luck and if you do go after a turbo Subaru you know how important oil maintenance is
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Old 04-02-2013, 08:21 PM   #18
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Hmm you say replace the bottom end...? What does that involve?

Ive been under the impression my only option was to replace the whole engine, especially since my engine diagnosis isnt "official," and being that the problem is so internal. My mechanic was saying it has to be either a rod or bearing, but I imagine if i threw a rod the whole engine would have seized up and I would have zero drive ability?

But so far, I plan on contacting ccrengines.com as mentioned above. I do like the fact they warranty there engines and i feel like that might carry some weight if I resell the car, especially with how high-mileage my car is already.
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Old 04-02-2013, 09:00 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by albabanshee View Post
Hmm you say replace the bottom end...? What does that involve?

Ive been under the impression my only option was to replace the whole engine, especially since my engine diagnosis isn't "official," and being that the problem is so internal. My mechanic was saying it has to be either a rod or bearing, but I imagine if i threw a rod the whole engine would have seized up and I would have zero drive ability?

But so far, I plan on contacting ccrengines.com as mentioned above. I do like the fact they warranty there engines and i feel like that might carry some weight if I resell the car, especially with how high-mileage my car is already.
"Bottom end" refers to the block which has the crank, rods & pistons. You could also use "short block" which includes a bit more.
Swap over your heads, maybe do a timing kit & full gasket set.
Close to a rebuilt engine (this swap is not including valve/cam work).

As to CCR, I have one of their 2.5L longblocks in my 98 Legacy (a few thousand miles on it). After looking around, it was the best option in the timeframe I had to deal with. I would recommend them if you're looking.
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Old 04-04-2013, 08:11 AM   #20
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I highly doubt that this car spun a bearing simply due to Royal Purple 5W-30. It looks more like the oil was run too long and the level was not checked often enough. There have been a few uoa's posted here several years ago on RP 30 grades shearing, but I doubt there are any uoa's on the GF5 version in an n/a Subaru posted here.

Never ever run any ANY oil past 7,500 miles without a used oil analysis with TBN. Amsoil 10W-30 can probably go 12k miles, and I've seen Outback 2.5i uoa's on it. You could easily run Pennzoil conventional 5W-30 for 7,500 miles. I run the High Mileage version (slightly more robust) in a 2000 RS for 5-6k mile intervals.

-Dennis
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Old 04-04-2013, 12:55 PM   #21
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"Bottom end" refers to the block which has the crank, rods & pistons. You could also use "short block" which includes a bit more.
Swap over your heads, maybe do a timing kit & full gasket set.
Close to a rebuilt engine (this swap is not including valve/cam work).

As to CCR, I have one of their 2.5L longblocks in my 98 Legacy (a few thousand miles on it). After looking around, it was the best option in the timeframe I had to deal with. I would recommend them if you're looking.
Thanks for the clarification And CCR was the route I went with a GM LD9 engine. I think as far as time is concerned they are better than Jasper and they dont just slap junk on/in the block and ship it! That engine has been in that car for 8 years.
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Old 04-19-2013, 08:40 AM   #22
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I am very surprised at how many engine / oil / overheat the newer Subaru are having. New to Subarus.
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Old 05-29-2013, 06:09 PM   #23
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I highly doubt that this car spun a bearing simply due to Royal Purple 5W-30. It looks more like the oil was run too long and the level was not checked often enough. There have been a few uoa's posted here several years ago on RP 30 grades shearing, but I doubt there are any uoa's on the GF5 version in an n/a Subaru posted here.

Never ever run any ANY oil past 7,500 miles without a used oil analysis with TBN. Amsoil 10W-30 can probably go 12k miles, and I've seen Outback 2.5i uoa's on it. You could easily run Pennzoil conventional 5W-30 for 7,500 miles. I run the High Mileage version (slightly more robust) in a 2000 RS for 5-6k mile intervals.

-Dennis
I agree, I've only been in the automotive field for a year but during training its pretty much beaten into us that oil is the life blood of an engine. Everyone in this thread is making it seem like the oil magically blew the engine, idc what tests have been done no oil is going to blow an engine. Its operator error. Im running the Eneos 5w-30 full synthetic with a subaru filter in my 07 2.5i and change every 3000k, no problems and my engine is running SMOOTH. Just hope this guys swap or whatever he decides goes well!
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