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Old 04-12-2021, 11:41 PM   #1
joea99
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Location: Stone Ridge, NY 12484
Default EJ253 swappability, into 06 Forester

Been browsing for complete engines, for my 06 Forester 5 speed. Some of the salvage yards have tempting prices for lower mileage and appeal more than JDM as there should be less swapping of odds and ends.

However, not all appears as I expect. Some sources show the 06 as unique, in that 07 08 Forester show "do not fit". The Legacy versions to seem to cross years, but show "no fit" for the Foresters.

Seems odd as the JDM versions claim to fit all those years and models. I presume that is all related to "miscellaneous" bit that need to be swapped out with JDM to NA and may also suggest that between NA models and years, some minor fiddles may be required. Or is there more to it, like that variable valve lift nonsense not existing on some models?

Trying to avoid an expensive mistake and also a rebuild of what I have, for time constraint reasons.
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Old 04-13-2021, 01:26 AM   #2
OGspartan
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I cant be 100% sure but i think the main differences might be because of the intake manifolds and subtle changes throughout the years. For example, i have an 06 impreza 2.5, 5 speed, ej253. My intake manifold is one piece. Ive been researching stuff and have noticed that some manifolds on different models have a “2-piece” manifold but are still considered ej253.
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Old 04-13-2021, 06:07 PM   #3
Pix3L8
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I believe in 06 Subaru started the AVLS system for some ej253 engines which means some had the variable valve lift like mine and some didn't. I called a dealer to order my short block and they seemed to imply all ej253 short blocks were the same except if it was manual or automatic. The only differences that I know of are with the intakes like spartan said and in the various sensor and computer setups in different car/ year combinations. It always sucks when you own a car of a year when the manufacturer changed a bunch of stuff, apparently, 06 was one of those years. the best advice I can give is to call a local subie dealer and pick the parts guys brain about your problem. Also I find it hilarious Subaru doesn't sell an OEM long block option...like cmon guys we don't all want eBay JDM engines when we blow our cars up.
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Old 04-13-2021, 06:39 PM   #4
joea99
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pix3L8 View Post
I believe in 06 Subaru started the AVLS system for some ej253 engines which means some had the variable valve lift like mine and some didn't. I called a dealer to order my short block and they seemed to imply all ej253 short blocks were the same except if it was manual or automatic. The only differences that I know of are with the intakes like spartan said and in the various sensor and computer setups in different car/ year combinations. It always sucks when you own a car of a year when the manufacturer changed a bunch of stuff, apparently, 06 was one of those years. the best advice I can give is to call a local subie dealer and pick the parts guys brain about your problem. Also I find it hilarious Subaru doesn't sell an OEM long block option...like cmon guys we don't all want eBay JDM engines when we blow our cars up.
I think the only difference between the manual and automatic is the manual has a "guide" for the timing belt, over the crank pulley I think, and the automatic does not. Something about leaving trans in gear while parked and getting a bump from behind, forcing the engine to rotate backward and jump a tooth.

Any easy way of telling if the AVLS stuff is there? the FSM says something about the "valve" in the head, but I never bothered to look for it. Guess I have to now.
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Old 04-13-2021, 09:35 PM   #5
Pix3L8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by joea99 View Post
I think the only difference between the manual and automatic is the manual has a "guide" for the timing belt, over the crank pulley I think, and the automatic does not. Something about leaving trans in gear while parked and getting a bump from behind, forcing the engine to rotate backward and jump a tooth.

Any easy way of telling if the AVLS stuff is there? the FSM says something about the "valve" in the head, but I never bothered to look for it. Guess I have to now.
the easiest way to know if you have AVLS is to see if you have several sensors poking out of the head.(standing in front of the car looking at the engine) on front of the driver's side head they will be right behind the timing cover, near the dip stick tube. On the passenger's side rear they will be right at the back of the head. It's a round solenoid sticking out of the head about 2 inches long, there will also be an oil sensor and one other sensor I can't remember the purpose of all in the same area. On my car they have a blue, a white, and I think a black connector respectively. The round solenoid (oil control solenoid) is shown in this picture I found online
https://www.google.com/search?q=suba...FU7n0MMd1vbmdM
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Old 04-27-2021, 06:51 PM   #6
joea99
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Reviving this for a bit.

Most of the JDM's I see seem to be from automatics. Base that on a flex plate rather than flywheel in the pictures and from a couple phone calls to the vendors.

Soooo . . . what are the differences? I plan to get one and swap or replace what I need, to go into my 5 speed. Obviously I need to swap the flywheel and bolts over. Good idea to also move the timing belt guard over as well. However, I see the timing belts kits specify auto or manual. I understand the difference to be the water pump. Can I just try to block the extra port, or is there more to it?
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