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Secondary air - replace or remove?


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Hi All,

Well, about 20 miles after picking up my 2006 Forester 2.5xt the engine light came on.... Great! I took it to my mechanic who got the codes and it needs the secondary air valves replacing. That's going to cost me about £800 all up and I haven't even done 150 miles in it!

Searching online I see that some people are just removing the system due to these rather expensive to fix problems, in fact I did a similar thing on my Triumph Thruxton motorbike but I don't carry out car mechanics so much.

Can anyone tell me if I am better to have the parts replaced properly in order to keep it as Subaru intended or should I just get a blanking kit and ask my mechanic to remove it all? It's my main car, not a toy and so I don't want to mess it up but equally wonder if there is any harm to be done saving a few quid and doing away with it or benefit to keeping it? The car is also 'holding back' a little and a bit jerky when pulling away. I wondered if that is likely to be anything to do with it. Is it safe to drive it before it's fixed?

I hope someone can advise, it'a been a bit of a crap start to ownership really.....



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I had the same common problem on my Forester 2.5XT. I have found the best (cheapest) solution is to have a remap (£250), then delete codes pertinent to secondary air system, and leave all the hardware on the car. If the solenoid valves are in a closed position fine, if one or both are stuck open just disconnect the hose from the air pump, push in a 28mm copper soldered cap the wrong way round (I'm a plumber!), with a jubilee clip, then 'park' the capped hose back onto the air pump and it looks like it is still connected, this will stop exhaust gasses coming up through the air pump.

Performance it not affected.There is a baro sensor on one of the solenoid valves, but this ONLY relates to the secondary air system, and once the codes are switched off it is taken out of the frame.


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Thanks for all your help and replies guys... I spoke to my mechanic who has already orders and paid for the parts so I'm going to have to go with it and get them replaced........ This isn't a great start! I hope I haven't bought a bag of nails!

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