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new member, 1st time Subaru owner, engine troubles


andyvic82
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Hi every 1, did not want my 1st post to be a bad 1 but stuff happens. Just got my legacy 2L gl mk3 a week and a half ago, think i got done over. Great car loved it, till this afternoon. idle revs all over 200 to 2000, lots of dry carbon on spark plugs, what looks to be oil spitting out the exhaust and power drops and picks back up when driving. parked up now scared to turn her over, really dont want to course anymore damage. Can anyone please help, we dont have a lot of money so will have to do all the work myself, im not a machinic. iv been waiting 14 years to own a Subaru, now iv got a broken one, i have to fix her. Please please can anyone help me. Thank u for reading i am sorry my first post is me asking for help.

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Hi mate sorry to hear you are having problems this early into owning the car :(

It doesn't sound great at all so it's Oil not petrol I'm sure you have checked. But sounds like cracked piston and piston ring I'm guessing from the picture it's not a turbo. Other wise maybe look at the turbo too. But I would go with Pistons myself :(

Tlag is the best person I know to answer this, but doesn't look great if it's oil :(

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Wow thank u for replying so quick and so late. Yes is a non turbo, me and the wife went shopping and she was running fine ( the legacy not the wife ), but when we went to go home thats when i noticed it. Got all the way home (4 mile drive) and can still turn over, but just sounds like it is missing now, pulled the sparks lots of carbon, cleaned them up put back in, did spark tests too. Oil was very low, was full last week. Topped up oil then turned her over, idle still bouncing between 200 to 2000 rpm, thats when i noticed WHAT LOOKED to be be a lot of oil spitting out the exhaust. No nasty broken metal sound coming from engine. I really like my legacy and want and to to fix her.

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Hi mate sorry to hear you are having problems this early into owning the car :(

It doesn't sound great at all so it's Oil not petrol I'm sure you have checked. But sounds like cracked piston and piston ring I'm guessing from the picture it's not a turbo. Other wise maybe look at the turbo too. But I would go with Pistons myself :(

Tlag is the best person I know to answer this, but doesn't look great if it's oil :(

I did think piston rings too. The wife is doing her nut.

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It does sound like the diagnosis Gambit gave could be right I'm afraid, if the piston is cracked it's enough to let the oil through, if the ring has broke it would do the same, have you only looked at the black stuff coming out the exhaust or have you dabbed it and smelt it? If the exhaust has condensation in then the soot can come out wet and look like oil

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It does sound like the diagnosis Gambit gave could be right I'm afraid, if the piston is cracked it's enough to let the oil through, if the ring has broke it would do the same, have you only looked at the black stuff coming out the exhaust or have you dabbed it and smelt it? If the exhaust has condensation in then the soot can come out wet and look like oil

Hi Miggs and thank u and Gambit very much for get back to me so very late, even if it is bad news lol. I put my ungloved hand buy the exhaust to catch what came out. It say black ish brown, smelt of fuel and felt a little like oil. So guys im very skint, i helped a old mate back in the to pull out and rebuild his R33 straight 6 skyline lump 5 times ( drift car ). And pull out and rebuilt escort lumps. BUT never have i even tuched a scooby lump, and as i said we r skint so have to do all the work myself. Have any thoughts how i should begin.

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That sounds more like soot and condensation to be honest, how much oil has it lost over how long? If you do need to sort the piston the easiest way is going to be replace the engine, unlike a straight 4 or straight 6 because of the boxer design the block is in the middle and is 2 halves bolted together, to get a piston out on the con rod you need to split the centre of the engine, just the piston will come out by undoing a big hex nut on the block and some circuit pliers (long nose) through the hole to release the gudgeon pin, to get the pin out I found putting a screwdriver in with insulation tape but up quite thick, push into the visible hole for the pin and give it a wiggle while pulling outward, once done the piston will come out the top of the block, it's costly as you need to replace the head gaskets, timing belt and tensioner and idlers, I would look into the cost of the required parts against the cost of a second hand engine, just make sure you can see the engine running so you can hear it's not knocking and see if it's smoking

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Guys ( Gambit and Miggs ) thank u again, even for the bad news.

So i think the next step will be take my baby off the road, get a little run around. And pull out my babys heart and get her a new one. I am so gutted, I just dont have the knowledge to fix the problem myself with swopping out her heart. even tho iv had her less than 2 weeks iv really loved driving her, the smile on my face the first time i drove her home, even being a non turbo. Oh just had a thought Wrighting this, Gambit Miggs instead of buying a new engine, would it be cheeper to get it reconed and put her heart back in???

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I doubt it as it's still labour cost for someone to strip it down, a Campbell alone is about £200 just to supply the full kit is obviously more, gasket set another couple of hundred, by the time you've paid for the parts you could have a new engine and still get change, I'm speculating based on what I see the parts for online, it doesn't hurt to ask some garages how much they'd charge

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Hi chap. If Adam comes over, at least you would have a diagnosis to work with. Adam will know what's wrong.

Both Adam and I have seen the consequences of a holed piston and what you describe dosnt quite fit what we have seen, although that may be because our experience of that was with a turboed car and at high speed.

Before pulling it apart, I would do a compression test. That will give you an indication as to the problem.

Any help you need, just shout up and we can help you sort it.

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Have been thinking about this and I,m really not sure it's as drastic as an engine internal problem.

Other than spitting out black deposits, was there lots of smoke?

Any strange noises, like metal on metal/ dragging noises?

What's the mileage on the car?

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Hey chap. I'm just down the road from you in Worcester... Would you like me to come over and take a look?

Hi chap. If Adam comes over, at least you would have a diagnosis to work with. Adam will know what's wrong.

Both Adam and I have seen the consequences of a holed piston and what you describe dosnt quite fit what we have seen, although that may be because our experience of that was with a turboed car and at high speed.

Before pulling it apart, I would do a compression test. That will give you an indication as to the problem.

Any help you need, just shout up and we can help you sort it.

Guys thank u so much, adam yes mate that would be great. Im not in tomorrow, and i work nights so let me know when ur free to cone over, guys thank u again.

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That's the kinda spirit all forums should share, well done guys for the offering, it's hard to be exact when you can't do things to check over a computer, and I've never had a cracked piston myself but I've seen it happen to a mates golf, although it was more a chunk from the top that escalated to massive failure lol, I'm sure the op will be very grateful and I do hope it's something simple and cheap to fix, nothing worse than a new car that's broken when your skint

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Have been thinking about this and I,m really not sure it's as drastic as an engine internal problem.

Other than spitting out black deposits, was there lots of smoke?

Any strange noises, like metal on metal/ dragging noises?

What's the mileage on the car?

No strange noises from then engine.

105k on clock

No smoke.

Could it be a valve??

Car still runs.

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I work all sorts of odd hours, mostly days but sometimes lates/nights. I only work one Sunday every two months, so a Sunday would be good for me. I'm not sure when my next late shift is so I will need to check on Monday and get baxk to you.

It's not easy to say without looking at the car, but any oil in the exhaust would burn and you would see lots of smoke. The colour of the smoke (if you have any) is also a clue... Oil burns almost white with a hint of blue. If the smoke is black it's running rich so you have a fueling issue.

Edit: just seen your latest post. I'm starting to think maybe an air leak on the inlet side, or maybe an idle control valve problem.

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I work all sorts of odd hours, mostly days but sometimes lates/nights. I only work one Sunday every two months, so a Sunday would be good for me. I'm not sure when my next late shift is so I will need to check on Monday and get baxk to you.

It's not easy to say without looking at the car, but any oil in the exhaust would burn and you would see lots of smoke. The colour of the smoke (if you have any) is also a clue... Oil burns almost white with a hint of blue. If the smoke is black it's running rich so you have a fueling issue.

Edit: just seen your latest post. I'm starting to think maybe an air leak on the inlet side, or maybe an idle control valve problem.

idle control sounds about right as when it was idlling the revs was bouncing between 200 to 2000 rpm. And i only noticed the spitting oil after i refilled the oil as was empty.

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Well it's not looking too good for this week... Finish at 8pm on Tuesday and just before 9pm on Wednesday. I can try to swap for something better but it'll be difficult at short notice.

Do you have somewhere that is well lit where we can have a look? I can see this having to be done in the dark.

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