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Discussion Starter #1
Like the Title says, Sti has over 125,000 miles and +400whp. On the way to work oil light can on:confused:. Kept driving made it to work. Took the car apart and found pick up tube completely off. Car had no noise and was still running. No bearing shaving in the pan but I'll see once I get it running. I was loosing oil all of sudden the past month but contribute it to the mileage and upgrades.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/pn26ct1b0byim4f/IMAG0004.jpg?dl=0
 

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*hug* How many miles did you drive with that light on?
On the bright side, Killer B pickup in future?
 

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Wow, can't imagine getting away with driving with an oil light on! So lucky!!
Any chance you knocked the pickup off completely when removing the pan?
Lastly, question for all, would prior oil loss be due to aeration oil due to the failing pickup?
 

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When they break, they sometimes stay almost together until the bolts are removed. With the light on though, you've only got a maximum of 2.1psi. It's VERY likely, the reason for your consumption was cause by a lack of oil flow to bearing surfaces.

With that mileage at that power level, there isn't going to much beyond the service limits in the engine anyway unless you drove it like grandma. It's unfortunate that it had to go down this way vs planned :/

You might be able to put a new pickup back in it and run thicker oil, since your clearances are likely very big, and get a bunch more miles out of it with less oil consumption. You might get another 10 miles down the road.

It's really a gamble at this point. If I were in your shoes, I'd ride out your luck streak (since most completely broken pickups results in catastrophic engine failure) and put it back together.
 

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interesting. Are there 2 welds at the tube/flange end?? I see a weld to the flange but it does NOT look like there is a weld where it cracked and broke? Also the metal at the crack is bright and shiny not oil stained as if it had been broken for awhile...it looks like whatever broke it just happened. Has the engine ever been out of the car before and/or the pan removed at any other point in the cars history?
 

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There are no welds, it's brazed. In an oil bath the metal will not pick up mill scale, which is why it can remain shiny, unlike the tube.

The crack is exactly like all the other 06+ pickups that have failed. Here is info from a really old post of mine....

I’ve gotten many requests for detailed information regarding the Oil Pickup, both OEM and the one we manufacture so I thought I’d post, what I know, for everyone to see. Specifically the questions seemed to be about the factory pickup and how/why it fails.

So on to the factory pickups… They are brazed assemblies (it's kind of like welding, but more like soldering with temperatures much lower than welding ~800 degrees. The braze is the gold stuff you see between the pieces. Before the braze can be applied to the metal pieces you put this stuff called 'flux' on them. The flux makes sure that when the parts are heated up that the braze flows between and sticks to the metal parts properly. When operators, or machines, puts the flux on these parts to get them ready for brazing, the flux must AT LEAST cover the area that needs to be brazed together. So the application of the flux is typically quite extensive and sloppy.

This application of flux and brazing seem to be done properly because I've never seen a braze joint failure. The problem is that the flux SHOULD be cleaned from the parts after the brazing process has been completed. We'll come back to this in a second.

Now the tube, where the failures occur, is a simple thin (~.030") walled seam welded tube. A seam welded tube is basically a long skinny flat piece of metal that gets rolled into a tube and then welded where the edges meet. If you look at some of the pics in my link you'll see a distinct line that runs the length of the tube. That's the weld. Welded tubing has its downside. While cheap, the weld can be the achilles heal if not done properly. In this situation it's a rough surface (when you look under a microscope), which means it can break or crack easier than if it were smooth, and more brittle than the non-welded area of the tube wall.

OK so back to the braze... When not removed from certain process affected areas, specifically a hardened rough weld, it will get into any micro pock mark or pit when it's applied then heated, and a chemical reaction will occur. The flux reacts with the specific metal condition of the weld (harder and pits, etc..) and will etch into the pits making them deeper... this can also make the metal more brittle too. This is what ends up weakening the structure to the point of cracking. And the fact that it's bolted to the bottom of an engine doesn't help either.

Speaking to vibrations and
engines modified with bolt-ons. Engine vibration is not as much a contributing factor as you might initially think for a few reasons. The rotating assemblies are fairly well balanced and harmonically dampened. The oil pickup is submerged in oil, and filled with oil. This dampens the engine vibrations tremendously at the pickup. Some assume the pickup is just swinging around from the engine vibrations, but forget that the pickup is also in oil and full of oil. Now where high frequency vibrations do come from is the oil pump. Typically called ‘high frequency pressure pulsation’, these lower amplitude pulses can have a more pronounced affect because of harmonics that can build in the pickup assembly, possibly where a critical frequency may be being reached at certain RPMs (speed of the oil pump).

So essentially, based on what I have experienced and learned, the OEM oil pickup failures are initiated from a chemical reaction from braze flux on the weld seam and these weakened areas are taken advantage of by oil pump induced high frequency vibrations.
 

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There are no welds, it's brazed. In an oil bath the metal will not pick up mill scale, which is why it can remain shiny, unlike the tube.

The crack is exactly like all the other 06+ pickups that have failed. Here is info from a really old post of mine....

I’ve gotten many requests for detailed information regarding the Oil Pickup, both OEM and the one we manufacture so I thought I’d post, what I know, for everyone to see. Specifically the questions seemed to be about the factory pickup and how/why it fails.

So on to the factory pickups… They are brazed assemblies (it's kind of like welding, but more like soldering with temperatures much lower than welding ~800 degrees. The braze is the gold stuff you see between the pieces. Before the braze can be applied to the metal pieces you put this stuff called 'flux' on them. The flux makes sure that when the parts are heated up that the braze flows between and sticks to the metal parts properly. When operators, or machines, puts the flux on these parts to get them ready for brazing, the flux must AT LEAST cover the area that needs to be brazed together. So the application of the flux is typically quite extensive and sloppy.

This application of flux and brazing seem to be done properly because I've never seen a braze joint failure. The problem is that the flux SHOULD be cleaned from the parts after the brazing process has been completed. We'll come back to this in a second.

Now the tube, where the failures occur, is a simple thin (~.030") walled seam welded tube. A seam welded tube is basically a long skinny flat piece of metal that gets rolled into a tube and then welded where the edges meet. If you look at some of the pics in my link you'll see a distinct line that runs the length of the tube. That's the weld. Welded tubing has its downside. While cheap, the weld can be the achilles heal if not done properly. In this situation it's a rough surface (when you look under a microscope), which means it can break or crack easier than if it were smooth, and more brittle than the non-welded area of the tube wall.

OK so back to the braze... When not removed from certain process affected areas, specifically a hardened rough weld, it will get into any micro pock mark or pit when it's applied then heated, and a chemical reaction will occur. The flux reacts with the specific metal condition of the weld (harder and pits, etc..) and will etch into the pits making them deeper... this can also make the metal more brittle too. This is what ends up weakening the structure to the point of cracking. And the fact that it's bolted to the bottom of an engine doesn't help either.

Speaking to vibrations and
engines modified with bolt-ons. Engine vibration is not as much a contributing factor as you might initially think for a few reasons. The rotating assemblies are fairly well balanced and harmonically dampened. The oil pickup is submerged in oil, and filled with oil. This dampens the engine vibrations tremendously at the pickup. Some assume the pickup is just swinging around from the engine vibrations, but forget that the pickup is also in oil and full of oil. Now where high frequency vibrations do come from is the oil pump. Typically called ‘high frequency pressure pulsation’, these lower amplitude pulses can have a more pronounced affect because of harmonics that can build in the pickup assembly, possibly where a critical frequency may be being reached at certain RPMs (speed of the oil pump).

So essentially, based on what I have experienced and learned, the OEM oil pickup failures are initiated from a chemical reaction from braze flux on the weld seam and these weakened areas are taken advantage of by oil pump induced high frequency vibrations.
Is anyone keeping track of VIN numbers of 06's that have had this happen??? OP?
 

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This has happened on ALL EJ engines. Not just STi models, not just turbo EJ25 models. ALL Subaru cars with an EJ have experienced failures. There are many threads on this already going back many years.

The most well known are the ones from 2002 onward. Likely due to the popularity of forums and significant increase in information sharing.

The most common failing oil pickup (USDM) part numbers end in 050 (2002-2004), 070 (2004-2005), and 110 (2006-2016). There are some variances among MYs (part numbers changed mid-year), but this occurs mostly with non-Impreza models.
 

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Discussion Starter #10 (Edited)
I want to say it was 30 miles with the oil light on (blinking). Well the pickup tube went in along with the baffle this weekend past. I've been driving the car since, I'm doing another oil change before the weekend to check. I don't know what to say other then It hasn't blown up yet.

I'm the only one who works on the car, other than tuning on the dyno. Neither oil pan or engine has been out before. As long as it runs till April (fingers cross), thats my time frame for engine rebuild.

As of today I have over 100 miles.
 

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I have been doing research to see when the last reported incidence of failures have occurred and I'm finding the evidence hard to find and posts like this one don't help.
The post is from 2015, but he doesn't say the year of his car... 125K indicates something like 2005, when it WAS a problem.
Does any one have anything to add as to when Subaru fixed the problem in WRX and STI's?
 

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There's a nasioc poll that shows more details. The construction, manufacturing process, and design have not changed since 2006.

I think you see a lot less, because it's now an understood and well documented flaw. 10 years ago people were comparing notes and failures and trying to figure out what was going on. It was much hotter topic. I still get pics from customers, I probably have a couple hundred if not more, but I stopped posting new ones as it just seemed redundant and nothing has changed, except that it's better understood.
 

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There's a nasioc poll that shows more details. The construction, manufacturing process, and design have not changed since 2006.

I think you see a lot less, because it's now an understood and well documented flaw. 10 years ago people were comparing notes and failures and trying to figure out what was going on. It was much hotter topic. I still get pics from customers, I probably have a couple hundred if not more, but I stopped posting new ones as it just seemed redundant and nothing has changed, except that it's better understood.
Saw the poll. It stops in 2008. Hard to argue about whether Subaru addressed the issue in manufacturing or not without data. I just see a number of people saying the replacement of the OEM pickup tube is their #1 concern.
 

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Just go buy one. Compared to what I've got in my album. I have pics from 2002 to 2016.
my car is lowered and i know your oil pan is a bit larger than the OEM one. Is it crucial to replace the oil pan as well? I know your pick up fits into the OEM oil pan but I'm obviously worried about clearance when going over unseen things at night.
 

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my car is lowered and i know your oil pan is a bit larger than the OEM one. Is it crucial to replace the oil pan as well? I know your pick up fits into the OEM oil pan but I'm obviously worried about clearance when going over unseen things at night.
Our pan still fits under the OEM belly pan; which I HIGHLY recommend NOT removing due to the benefits it provides. It is absolutely not critical to use our pan. My standard answer is that it's something you should strongly consider as insurance from oil starvation if you track your care more than occasionally. For street driving, it's not crucial at all.
 
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