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Old 04-16-2018, 10:32 PM   #1
trixunlimited
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Default 2003 wrx sti 6 speed purchase/build thread/issue thread

Hey everyone I need some help here and I am not exactly sure what is wrong with this car that I am looking to buy.

Car is an 02 wrx with an sti 6 speed swap

It has 3 check engine lights currently 1 for MAF (p0102) 1 for IAT (p0113) and another for Bank 1 sensor 1 O2 sensor (p0031). (I have attached screenshots for reference).

The car also has a "built motor" as it says in the cobb with a 2.5 bottom end and a 2.0 top end.

THE ISSUES OUTSIDE THE CHECK ENGINE LIGHT

When you plug the MAF in the car goes to turn off, almost instantly. When you turn the car back on it will run a bit but SUPER rough. I am thinking the car was tuned without the MAF being used on speed density, but then that leads to another issue. When I test drove the car the car gets into boost (showed 15psi on the boost gauge) but the car felt like it was slower than stock. So I am a bit lost as to why this would happen.

Is there an underlying issue within the motor that seems to be bad?

I didnt see any coolant in oil/ or vice versa. Under the oil cap seemed clean with no residue of coolant. And the car ran so smooth without the MAF plugged in it was mind boggling. So I am thinking something else is wrong, but I guess that is why I am here looking for the community to help.

This guy is looking for a response from me by tomorrow, so if anyone can help it is appreciated and I can throw a couple bucks your way on venmo or paypal for help if anything.

I have also attached a video below on youtube for everyone to hear and see. Sorry for the poor sound quality my phone cannot pick up loud sounds well.

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Last edited by trixunlimited; 05-14-2018 at 04:08 PM.
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Old 04-16-2018, 10:40 PM   #2
trixunlimited
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Also to note, I did search up my specific issues and I could not find a good answer with the search function.

Any help is again appreciated!
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Old 04-16-2018, 11:15 PM   #3
trixunlimited
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also from separate searches I have found this

"Thanks for the input guys. I found that the hose from the pcv valve to the intake manifold had not been connected. It was very hard to detect. Was tucked under throttle body."

The thread below goes over the O2 sensor Relay location and its importance to the car running properly

https://forums.nasioc.com/forums/sho....php?t=1784439


Still looking for any additional info or help to diagnose this tomorrow
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Old 04-16-2018, 11:55 PM   #4
D-Rodman
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Walk away dude, why buy somebody else’s headache.
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Old 04-17-2018, 12:14 AM   #5
trixunlimited
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Quote:
Originally Posted by D-Rodman View Post
Walk away dude, why buy somebody else’s headache.
when I tell you this car is cheap, it is CHEAP ill message you
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Old 04-17-2018, 09:20 AM   #6
A-man07
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If he wants more than $3K and you aren't prepared to put at least $5K into it then forget it. It looks like a ****box. Much work and money ahead but that doesn't mean it can't be your fun project it's just going to cost some change.
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Old 04-17-2018, 10:03 AM   #7
rtv900
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trixunlimited View Post
when I tell you this car is cheap, it is CHEAP ill message you
ok now I'm curious
just post how much he's asking?
it damn well better be cheap by the looks of that thing and the nightmare operating issues
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Old 04-17-2018, 11:06 AM   #8
berge56
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I'll start with the CEL's.

Okay so for the CEL's, P0102 and P0113 are more than likely related to the MAF being unplugged. Clean it or get a new OEM MAF. You need to have that to drive the car as that is crucial. If that car is speed density tuned I have no idea how they are measuring Air temp as you usually have an aftermarket sensor installed within 12 inches of the throttle body. You also usually have an upgraded omni bar sesnor which is not present on your throttle body either.

The P0031 is a bad front o2 sensor. Buy a new OEM sensor and you should be in business.

Now with that out of the way, I would do compression test before you do anything to get an idea of motor health. The test should come back to each cylinder being 5-10% off from each other and anything over 140 is decent. I would also find out if they had the heads machined to match the quench area of the bigger 2.5l block. I know back in the day people would just run extra thick head gaskets which usually caused the engine to be knock prone as it was a band aid fix.

Like others have said, be careful, and the car better be cheap as you could end up dumping thousands into this car.

And do not drive the car until the MAF is fixed. You could cause damage to the engine. O2 sensor should also be fixed ASAP as well.
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Old 04-17-2018, 09:59 PM   #9
trixunlimited
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Well, I went to go finalize looking at the car today and the guy sold it out from under me.

The car was up for 6k and he confirmed 4500 for me, which to be honest I think was a steal. O well i guess its one less headache I have to deal with.

Thank you Berge56 and others who reached out, it is appreciated and it doesn't go un noticed!
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Old 04-18-2018, 06:15 AM   #10
rtv900
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trixunlimited View Post
The car was up for 6k and he confirmed 4500 for me, which to be honest I think was a steal.!
that's why when someone says "its CHEAP" you still gotta ask, because "cheap" is way too relative.

Seeing that box of garbage, my definition of 'cheap' would have been $600.
I can't believe that imbecile had the nerve to ask $6000, and worse yet somebody paid close to that, poor guy.

You dodged a bullet whether you know it or not.
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Old 04-21-2018, 12:38 PM   #11
trixunlimited
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rtv900 View Post
that's why when someone says "its CHEAP" you still gotta ask, because "cheap" is way too relative.

Seeing that box of garbage, my definition of 'cheap' would have been $600.
I can't believe that imbecile had the nerve to ask $6000, and worse yet somebody paid close to that, poor guy.

You dodged a bullet whether you know it or not.

Welp you may hate me lol. I actually ended up picking it up for 3500.

I think overall its a good deal, it has no rot/rust and its clean title. Has an STI transmission and a bunch of goodies.

I ordered all new gaskets for all the little leaks, and I have all the little maintenance items on their way. New plugs/ shifter bushings / o2 sensors and I will see how it is after I get all the stuff in it.
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Old 04-21-2018, 12:40 PM   #12
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i think taking the dive into this was worth it, especially with the prices of WRX's up here in the NY/NJ region.
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Old 04-28-2018, 08:27 PM   #13
trixunlimited
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Ok so update, this is where I am at.

Currently the MAF light is still on and I replaced it with a new maf and re did the wiring to the maf from where the harness leads into the larger part of the harness. It looks like someone had extended the harness at some point in time to run a blow through MAF setup. I guess it is time for me to start testing the wiring and whatnot, but I am at a loss with that and I have no idea how to do it. If anyone can help me figure that out it is appreciated. The weird part is the IAT code is gone now though hmmm?

The O2 sensor light is gone as well since I replaced the sensor, but I now have a new code.

P1088 for the Passenger TGV sensor near the turbo. I have a replacement sensor coming tomorrow to test and see if that fixes it. If it doesnt then I need to figure something else out.

Car is running well though just still seems like it is running on limp mode and down on power. Cannot wait to have this running well.
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Old 04-28-2018, 09:32 PM   #14
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As long as its not your daily it seems to be a good deal although the universe works in strange ways...you will pay the price difference in raw labor which some people are ok with.

Could you have bought a stock unmolested wrx for the same price yes but it is up to your own judgement.

Just remember "Uncle Larry" might have done the wiring. And it might have to be completely undone.

The blow through MAF comment troubles me, and yes I judge people with BOV differently, similar to people that install clear taillights on stock Tahoes.

You need to trace each sensor independently and get rid of the BOV asap. The good part is if the engine has good compression the rest can be worked out with it still in the car.


Good luck!
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Old 05-14-2018, 04:05 PM   #15
trixunlimited
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Ok so this is where I am at currently.

I was able to fix the wiring to the Mass Airflow Sensor. Essentially the wiring was in the right spots but the harness was grounding out on the shielding wire coming from the ECU pin out, and when testing both of the inputs I was getting 1.5 ohms resistance from both the shielding and the signal.

I cut the harness back significantly and checked the wiring again and found the area where it was connecting in the wiring. I re-extended all the wiring and put everything back together. SUCCESS! the MAF is now working.

I went ahead and replaced the rear TGV sensor. Which was a pain in the ass to be honest since the car has a 20g turbo and its just big enough that it makes it nearly impossible to get the sensor out. After replacing that sensor the motor in the front was giving me a code so I replaced that and I am still having the issue.

I went ahead and picked up some composite TGV deletes used that are in good shape that were made from ZERO LIFT when they were in business. They have no cracks or issues and I pressure checked them as well.

I plan to install the TGV deletes over the next couple of days and install the new shifter bushings I ordered to get rid of the side to side play in the shifter. Other than that it needs to be cleaned and tuned and it will be good to go.

Big shout out to JR at Prime motoring for the base tune on the fly! They charged me nothing for it and sent it over, I am definitely going to them for my dyno tune. They didn't have to do that and went out of their way to help me out. Also I needed the tune since I am deleting the TGV's and I will need the check engine light to go bye bye.

Other than that I am so close to this car being running and driving and hopefully soon being my daily that I am beyond excited. I also picked up a set of used RPF1s and I am wrapping them in sumitomo tires.
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