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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey everyone,
I am planning on buying a 2021 STI, never owned a subie before, know people who have many years ago but no one with anything newer than a Hawkeye.

A lot of people I know always saythe EJ isn鈥檛 reliable. I know they had issues with the block before and overheating cylinders but are they still plagued with serious issues?

It鈥檚 going to be my daily driver, including the winter, anyone have any issues with snow and cold weather?

What issues should I be possibly on the lookout for when I do get the car or things I should get done before I take ownership or any veteran touches!

thanks in advance everyone
 

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The engine is basically the same since the first STi, with added exhaust AVCS. You can keep them relatively reliable, but I use the term "Subaru'd" to describe when things break for a reason :).

That said, you can do a few things to help increase the odds of it lasting, and it likely will if you're not trying to mod and beat the crap out of it.

As for what to look for... Any potential, common issue with any STi, which I'll refer to searching the boards (I am happy to help with specific questions).
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
The engine is basically the same since the first STi, with added exhaust AVCS. You can keep them relatively reliable, but I use the term "Subaru'd" to describe when things break for a reason :).

That said, you can do a few things to help increase the odds of it lasting, and it likely will if you're not trying to mod and beat the crap out of it.

As for what to look for... Any potential, common issue with any STi, which I'll refer to searching the boards (I am happy to help with specific questions).
The engine is basically the same since the first STi, with added exhaust AVCS. You can keep them relatively reliable, but I use the term "Subaru'd" to describe when things break for a reason :).

That said, you can do a few things to help increase the odds of it lasting, and it likely will if you're not trying to mod and beat the crap out of it.

As for what to look for... Any potential, common issue with any STi, which I'll refer to searching the boards (I am happy to help with specific questions).
thanks for the reply, can you give me a run down on what those things are to keep it reliable. I鈥檓 not going to be modding it to any crazy degree as I plan on going with the quite impressive warranty that is available. Or is there a board for those things?
 

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you can make an ej plenty reliable as stated above. the few things he's likely referring to for reliability mods would be a quality air oil separator (iag or killer b), the get a dom cyl 4 cooling mod, killerb oil pickup and baffle. i'd also add an equal length header and a quality protune that doesnt push the limit. and MOST importantly DO NOT GET POWER HUNGRY. understand that with stock turbo you'll only push slightly over 300 (if even, dyno pending), and even if you wanted to stay stock motor but upgrade the turbo your safe limit is in the 350 ish range (again, pending dyno), if you want more than that build the motor. i'd personally say do the header and a full exhaust, tune it and just have fun. it might touch 300whp but it will be a fun car to drive daily.


also do maintenance early
 

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Written to many times: to write again excapt that I am currently DD a stock 2020 w 15K on it

As previous posters have noted, all car manufacturers have their issues.

Not the first time I've posted this: I drive Subarus because they are practical, reliable, not terribly expensive, fun, and handle quite well. I have driven a WRX to 200K and my current STI to 185K with no significant issues outside expected maintenance. The WRX was purchased new in 05. Don't think it ever had any warranty work. Purchased the STI in 2012 with 94K on it. Outside of expected maintenance it got a valve cover gasket and it had strut clunk. It was still reliably commuting 100mi/day at 185K when I had it built/rebuilt. My son drives an 02 WRX. It has miles on it.

The only trade-off compared to actual competition is poorer gas mileage.
Oh, oil pickups are a known failure point. Consider replacing it when your warranty expires. Plenty of cars like mine never have a problem with it, but failure is to often catastrophic.

It is a poor practice to lug any engine, and worse for any engine incorporating a turbo. Why do this? Admittedly an STI invites it, but Just because you can doesn't mean you should.
  • No mods necessary to make the car reliable for DD. In fact mod-wise I won't touch my 2020 till it is out of warranty.
  • new pistons are stronger if you are going to mod and/or beat on it. Certainly add a good AOS if you are gong to mod.
  • Check and change your oil often (like 3Kmi) and use good synthetic

one of my posts

Search my name and reliable as a keyword you'll find a number of these, and plenty of discussion of what mods are beneficial whether they are necessary or not.
 

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Keep it stock for at least the first year of ownership if you are new to the platform. Catback exhaust being the lone exception IMO.

Then you want to:
  • Use the highest octane fuel you have access to in your area, ideally 93/94.
  • Let the engine warm-up following a cold start before aggressively getting on the throttle.
  • Change the oil at short intervals (3k miles / 5k km), and use a robust 5w30 or 5w40 oil with the OEM Subaru filter. Do not use any energy conserving oils.
  • Get an alignment done to address the poor factory/post transport setup and add some negative camber to the front.
  • Like most motors, but particularly the EJ, do not wide open throttle low in the RPM range in the higher gears. Always down shift on the highway to accelerate.
  • On a stock car you don't need an AOS/cylinder 4 cooling mod IMO. If you decide to add a downpipe and get a pro tune then an AOS/cylinfer 4 cooling mod has its merits depending on your use case of the vehicle.
 

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you can make an ej plenty reliable as stated above. the few things he's likely referring to for reliability mods would be a quality air oil separator (iag or killer b),
AOS is good, but I don't recommend IAG. I have NEVER seen one not still let lots of oil into the intake, unless it's the competition model... Then it just dumps it all over the dyno where the hose vents. My pick is Crawford and has been for a decade. I even use one on my S2000.

the get a dom cyl 4 cooling mod,
Yes.


killerb oil pickup and baffle.
Probably not for most people, honestly. If you're extremely paranoid about the pickup, then by all means, swap the pickup out for the one mentioned above.

i'd also add an equal length header and a quality protune that doesnt push the limit. and MOST importantly DO NOT GET POWER HUNGRY. understand that with stock turbo you'll only push slightly over 300 (if even, dyno pending), and even if you wanted to stay stock motor but upgrade the turbo your safe limit is in the 350 ish range (again, pending dyno), if you want more than that build the motor. i'd personally say do the header and a full exhaust, tune it and just have fun. it might touch 300whp but it will be a fun car to drive daily.


also do maintenance early
I am a big fan of ELH and a good tune. I really enjoyed my the Invidia ELH I had, which was a nice, smooth sound without much loudness.



Stock or not, the cylinder 4 cooling hose it just as important in either configuration. Proper cooling is proper cooling. Honestly, it should be that way from the factory.
 
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