Subaru Outback Forums banner
  • Hey everyone! Enter your ride HERE to be a part of this month's Ride of the Month Challenge!

1 - 9 of 9 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
So I created this profile so i could get some help. With taxes coming up, a friend has asked to me to help her with a motor swap. Seeing how i've done several in the past, and i get the scrap car from it, i agreed. But here's my problem, i've never worked on a Subaru before. She has a 2003 Outback Legacy. I've found a few of the older models in my area and I'm curious as to what motors will fit in this 2003. Will a '96 motor fit? I cannot look at the '03 just yet, as it's in a diff town than mine as is the '96. I'm awaiting another email from someone else who has a similar car but did not post the year of it. If someone could please tell me what motors will and will not fit, that would be a great help! I appreciate any and all comments. thank you!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,818 Posts
A '96 Outback might have the SOHC EJ22 engine not the DOHC EJ25 in your friends car.
Someone at a higher pay level on the forum should confirm or deny this info.
I reckon any EJ25 is a direct swap. Differences will be in the PCM and engine control management.
 

·
Registered
OBW H6 VDC, Tribeca, XT6
Joined
·
12,385 Posts
1996 Outback has two different engines, this applies to 1996 only and Outbacks only, not other years or models:
96 automatic has a DOHC EJ25
96 manual has EJ22

Your friends 2003 has a SOHC EJ25

The 96, if it's an EJ22 (manual) doesn't work.

The 96, if it's an EJ25 (automatic) - doesn't work either. It is neither plug and play, nor are the intake manifolds interchangeable, nor can you easily swap the 2003 wiring harness onto the 96, the idle control is different and it's MAP, not MAF based. With some creativity I think it's doable...

If the 96 is an EJ25 - then you can use the short block and bolt your friends 2003 heads to it - assuming the engine is good. But you have to be careful about clearances and make sure you use thick headgaskets, there's very little clearance between the valves and pistons.

While I have done that swap before, I would not recommend using DOHC EJ25 blocks myself.

I would get the proper engine for it:
2000 - 2004 EJ25 engines are a direct swap.
Any 1999-2001 EJ22 is also a direct swap.

Sometimes you have to swap the passengers side cam sprocket and crank sprocket for the timing belt as they have different trigger points, but that's really easy with the engine out. If you simply swap it out as a rule, you're golden - if they're the same, then they're the same.

You should be installing a new timing belt kit anyway so it's really no extra work.

Ebay kits are $160 - $200 for all new timing belt, tensioner, and pulleys. Interference engine so it's not a good idea to skip those.

You can use later engines as well....but unlikely you'll find those for a reasonable price.

DOHC EJ25 in your friends car..
the 2003 has a SOHC, not a DOHC Ej25, they are not interchangeable.

I reckon any EJ25 is a direct swap.
there are three EJ25 varieties and they are not interchangeable: DOHC, SOHC, and VVT
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,818 Posts
1996 Outback has two different engines, this applies to 1996 only and Outbacks only, not other years or models:
96 automatic has a DOHC EJ25
96 manual has EJ22

Your friends 2003 has a SOHC EJ25

The 96, if it's an EJ22 (manual) doesn't work.

The 96, if it's an EJ25 (automatic) - doesn't work either. It is neither plug and play, nor are the intake manifolds interchangeable, nor can you easily swap the 2003 wiring harness onto the 96, the idle control is different and it's MAP, not MAF based. With some creativity I think it's doable...

If the 96 is an EJ25 - then you can use the short block and bolt your friends 2003 heads to it - assuming the engine is good. But you have to be careful about clearances and make sure you use thick headgaskets, there's very little clearance between the valves and pistons.

While I have done that swap before, I would not recommend using DOHC EJ25 blocks myself.

I would get the proper engine for it:
2000 - 2004 EJ25 engines are a direct swap.
Any 1999-2001 EJ22 is also a direct swap.

Sometimes you have to swap the passengers side cam sprocket and crank sprocket for the timing belt as they have different trigger points, but that's really easy with the engine out. If you simply swap it out as a rule, you're golden - if they're the same, then they're the same.

You should be installing a new timing belt kit anyway so it's really no extra work.

Ebay kits are $160 - $200 for all new timing belt, tensioner, and pulleys. Interference engine so it's not a good idea to skip those.

You can use later engines as well....but unlikely you'll find those for a reasonable price.

the 2003 has a SOHC, not a DOHC Ej25, they are not interchangeable.

there are three EJ25 varieties and they are not interchangeable: DOHC, SOHC, and VVT
Like I said, someone at a higher pay grade would confirm or deny what I said.
 

·
Registered
1993 Legacy LSi with still functioning Air Suspension, 1999 Outback 2.5L 5MT lab Rat
Joined
·
191 Posts
In terms of exact fit, the engine you need would be an EJ25 from a 2000 thru 2004 Legacy, Outback, 1999 thru 2004 Forester and some 1999 thru 2004, 25RS Impreza's will fit. I would be careful MT and AT as some of the blocks are not drilled for both. Best plan would be At to AT or MT to MT for ease of install
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Well thats a bummer. I'm not sure it's a SOHC or DOHC. but i did find a '98 outback legacy...so that wont work either without doing a header swap? I dont have much detail on her car yet, just that the motor is blown. I'm calling the shop she has it at tmrw to see exactly what happened to it. Thanks again for the help and any thing further would be great. I'll post tmrw on here what the motor has exactly
 

·
Registered
OBW H6 VDC, Tribeca, XT6
Joined
·
12,385 Posts
As to the MT verses AT does not matter, they have no variances by transmission.

The only issue you have to be aware of is EGR: Be on the look out for one of the following, Subaru is rather cracked up with EGR placement on some but not others:

1. If the existing motor has an EGR valve then you'll want the new motor to have EGR valve.
2. If the existing motor does NOT have an EGR valve then actually you can use any EJ25 - if you get one with EGR you just block it off, it's really easy. Or - get a motor without EGR.

i did find a '98 outback legacy...so that wont work either without doing a header swap?
No, 1996-1999 Legacy/Outbacks and 1998 Foresters won't work. Wrong EJ25.

Unlike in 1996 where there are two motors for the Outback, in 1998 all Outbacks are EJ25 so you can definitely use the block if you're into doing a head swap as mentioned above.

be careful as "head swap" and "header swap" (you said "header"....I never did, I said "head") are two completely different things, one is really simple and easy (header swap), the other is much more complex and has a lot of variables to it (head swap).

there is no "header" swap needed, only a "head" swap. unfortunately the difficult one.

You're going to find those older vehicles cheaper and on the market more (since they're not worth as much, not worth fixing more often) than the newer ones, keep looking though and get the right engine for it as outlined in my first post.
 

·
Registered
2003 Outback Limited 2.5L H4 5MT Regatta Red Pearl w/ lift and audio system
Joined
·
1,255 Posts
I'm interrupting this thread with a related question directed towards grossgary or whoever else. If I am not mistaken, the AT engine does not have a timing belt guide above the crank sprocket. The manual transmission engine does have this guide. I have heard many people say that the guide is not necessary on the manual, but many that say that it's completely necessary. Some people say it's there to prevent the belt from skipping during initial shipping.

If an originally A/T engine is swapped into a car with a manual transmission, could the missing guide cause issues?
 

·
Registered
1993 Legacy LSi with still functioning Air Suspension, 1999 Outback 2.5L 5MT lab Rat
Joined
·
191 Posts
Be aware some of the early AT blocks wont work because the Engine block is not drilled for the lower starter bolt as the lower starter on the AT is a stud on the Transmsson case (I have personally encountered this on an engine installed by another shop)

As to the issue of the belt guide situation, the guide exists to keep the belt from jumping time in case of a push start, which would not happen on an AT motor. In terms of need, it is not needed on an AT car but causes no harm to have inless your worried about the extra ounce of weight.
 
1 - 9 of 9 Posts
Top