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Discussion Starter #1
In another thread I detailed about trashing the EJ251 engine in my 2000 OBW. The replacement engine has been fine, but I do get valve clatter on startup, which disappears after about half a second at idle, and I think the oil pressure light takes a bit longer to go out than it used to.

This has me concerned. I can think of a few possible causes:
  1. Wear already on the bottom end bearings makes it hard to build system pressure quickly. This isn't great considering the last engine died by eating a rod bearing!
  2. The oil pump isn't generating enough pressure, possibly due to the front main seal issue I've seen mentioned before.
  3. Some other issue is impairing oil circulation
Any tips for diagnosing and/or improving valve clatter issues like this?
 

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What sort of oil filter are you using? If the filter is not holding oil when the engine is not running the oil feed to the engine is delayed while the filter is primed.

Seagrass
 

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You might also check to see which oil pump it has - the 8mm (or 7?) or the 9mm. The earlier engine apparently came with the thinner pump, and on an older, worn engine, probably would not not deliver enough oil fast enough at startup.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
You might also check to see which oil pump it has - the 8mm (or 7?) or the 9mm. The earlier engine apparently came with the thinner pump, and on an older, worn engine, probably would not not deliver enough oil fast enough at startup.
Is it possible to determine this just by taking the timing cover off, or do I need to actually remove the pump?
 

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Is it possible to determine this just by taking the timing cover off, or do I need to actually remove the pump?
I'd have to go back to find the post where it was explained to me, but it is ( if I remember correctly) a number or symbol that is cast as part of the housing. There may also be an explanation of it ( how to identify the pump width) in a video on you tube as well that you could look up.

Edit - Surprise, surprise! A quick googleing of "Subaru EJ251 oil pump identification" came up with my old post about this at the head of the list:

 

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Discussion Starter #8
I just now reached 1,000 miles on this engine.

I'm no longer convinced the sound on startup is "valve clatter". It does clear completely after the cold start, but at speed if the throttle is lifted with no load, an ominously similar sound occurs. It's hard to hear with the windows up, the radio and A/C on, but if the window is down and you drive in a canyon, it's unmistakeable. And once I heard it, I started listening in other settings and it's for sure there. The noise goes away if I'm engine braking or under heavy load.

I'm pretty sure I got an engine with a damaged bottom end. I guess this is the great risk of buying a junk yard engine.

Other stats on this engine.

MPG: Keeping it under 70 the last two tanks, 24.7 then 23.7. Overall in 1,000 miles: 22.7. I am more used to 25-28.
Oil: I've added 1.75 quarts in 1,000 miles. This seems (ahem) excessive. I park on clean concrete at night. No spots. No blue smoke I can see. Where the heck is it going?

Next steps:
  • Oil change, so we have a known filter (Subaru blue teeny tiny) and oil (Havoline ProDS 5W30).
  • Contact the dismantler and let them know what's been going on. Be sure to get an itemized invoice regarding the purchase (no, I didn't get one before).
  • Consider replacing with a rebuild. Apparently, I could have purchased a rebuilt one for less. Sigh. Any experience with these folks?
 
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