Ring failure discussion group
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This is a discussion on Ring failure discussion group within the Everyday Impreza Talk forums, part of the Community - Meet other Enthusiasts category; Does anyone know anything about ring failure on the 2011+ STi's? I've heard about this on occasion and am now ...

  1. #1
    Registered User 434WHP's Avatar
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    Ring failure discussion group

    Does anyone know anything about ring failure on the 2011+ STi's? I've heard about this on occasion and am now a bit worried. Any comments would be greatly appreciated..Have at it.

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    Registered User 434WHP's Avatar
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    Anybody?..........I was reading a thread on the wrx sti forum that contained over 145 pages of post with people having this problem which truthfully scared me a bit(a lot). Is anyone here having similar issues or am I just imagining these things? Or maybe I'm simply in the wrong discussion group.

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    Registered User Heide264's Avatar
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    STi's have been prone to blow rings since 08. Nobody is quite sure of the cause. I see it much more over on the STi forum than here. Our engines don't handle detonation well (nor do engines in general).

    I personally believe it to be a combination of semi-weak factory pistons and a somewhat bad factory tune. Doesn't take many detonation events at high load to blow a weak piston.

    People have flashed Cobb stage 1 right in the parking lot and still blown them. Some people blow them at 450whp randomly. No real clear correlation. Seems to be around 30k miles if anything, or under very hard/heavy use.

    The only clear correlation is that people with stock cars get it taken care of under warranty for the most part. Minor modifications are a 50/50 depending on dealer. I know if mine go I'm going to have to eat the cost of a motor build. Luckily dropping a set of forged pistons in seems to clear up this issue for the most part.

    No use worrying. If you mod your car though, know that you are running a bit of a risk. If you are willing to pay to play, its just part of the game sadly.
    Quote Originally Posted by Trainrex
    He was throwing balloons filled with sulfuric acid and shrapnel at the swat team. They finally had to take him down with rubber bullets.
    2011 STi Build Log
    -Part 1 - Reading, Data Logging, and Analyzing Data
    -Part 2 - Turbocharger 101 & Basic Boost Control
    -Part 3 - EcuFlash, Experimental Defintions, and a Drive By Wire Intro

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    Registered User CaQuin's Avatar
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    Subscribed to this... What forum where you at that had that discussion? We're the talking about the 11/12 Rexes or the 09?

    I have a 12 and reads on that makes me nervous.

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    Registered User Heide264's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaQuin View Post
    Subscribed to this... What forum where you at that had that discussion? We're the talking about the 11/12 Rexes or the 09?

    I have a 12 and reads on that makes me nervous.
    The only thing that has changed relevant to the issue has been slight tune changes from 08-12. The 08s supposedly had an awful tune. I've heard rumors the 12's have bad tunes as well.

    Bottom line is that our cars are prone to it, and its a limiter. The likely hood of blowing a ring is apparently smaller than it seems when looking at forums. If you leave your car stock, there is a small chance of a piston ring going - if you leave your car alone mostly, the dealer will most likely cover it. If you are modifying your car, there is a larger chance that you will blow a piston ring - and you will most likely have to stomach the bill.

    I've personally set money aside for an engine rebuild if needed. I learned how to drive a stick on my car, I've modified it and learned how to tune it myself, and I drive it way harder than I should time to time. If I lose one, I'll be ready. Grumpy, cranky, out $5k, but ready.
    Quote Originally Posted by Trainrex
    He was throwing balloons filled with sulfuric acid and shrapnel at the swat team. They finally had to take him down with rubber bullets.
    2011 STi Build Log
    -Part 1 - Reading, Data Logging, and Analyzing Data
    -Part 2 - Turbocharger 101 & Basic Boost Control
    -Part 3 - EcuFlash, Experimental Defintions, and a Drive By Wire Intro

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    Registered User 434WHP's Avatar
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    I purchased my 12 two weeks ago and traded in my heavily(moderately) modded 06 STi. I haven't driven an 08 but I can easily say the factory tune on my 12 is junk. Luckily I have a very good relationship with my dealer/service department so I'm not as worried as most as far as mods are concerned. SOA only knows what the dealer tells them. EXAMPLE: My 06 STi had Perrin headers, DP, cat-back, crank pulley and up-pipe as well as a Walbro pump, intake, AP and a pro tune which my dealer was well aware of and I recieved FULL warranty service right up to the day it expired. However, there is the of chance that SOA would require the tech to send data from the ECU to them or even send a tech of their own to the dealership....Not likely, but possible.

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    Registered User 434WHP's Avatar
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    Hers the link sir
    Subaru Impreza WRX STI Forums: IWSTI.com - *OFFICIAL* GR Piston Failures Thread - Collecting Data from All 2008+ STI owners
    Quote Originally Posted by CaQuin View Post
    Subscribed to this... What forum where you at that had that discussion? We're the talking about the 11/12 Rexes or the 09?

    I have a 12 and reads on that makes me nervous.

  10. #9
    Registered User 434WHP's Avatar
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    After you scroll through and read the thread on the other forum you'll notice that mods have very little if not nothing to do with this problem. There are multiple people with a completely stock STi that experienced this as well as modded cars. The common factor is the years(mostly 09-2011 and the mileage it occurs(between10k and 30k). I did not note a single incident that occurred post 30k so high mileage owners should gain some piece of mind.
    Quote Originally Posted by Heide264 View Post
    The only thing that has changed relevant to the issue has been slight tune changes from 08-12. The 08s supposedly had an awful tune. I've heard rumors the 12's have bad tunes as well. NOTE: I still need to finish going through that thread. It literally has 145 pages of posts.

    Bottom line is that our cars are prone to it, and its a limiter. The likely hood of blowing a ring is apparently smaller than it seems when looking at forums. If you leave your car stock, there is a small chance of a piston ring going - if you leave your car alone mostly, the dealer will most likely cover it. If you are modifying your car, there is a larger chance that you will blow a piston ring - and you will most likely have to stomach the bill.

    I've personally set money aside for an engine rebuild if needed. I learned how to drive a stick on my car, I've modified it and learned how to tune it myself, and I drive it way harder than I should time to time. If I lose one, I'll be ready. Grumpy, cranky, out $5k, but ready.

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    Registered User CaQuin's Avatar
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    O man. This garbage. And I thought I purchased a reliable car. I don't plan to modify my car in anyway. The only thing I plan to do is tint my car and put overlays on.

    This is my daily driver and drive a lot for work. I'm glad I have the extended warranty of 60k/6years. I just hope SOA won't give me a hard come claim time. Either way, time is more valuable. Errr this is very frustrating... I feel so disappointed.

  12. #11
    Registered User Heide264's Avatar
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    Calm down there guys, it's a small proportion of the cars in all reality. It's like saying toyotas aren't reliable after having a few 'run away' ones. The car is still generally reliable pending us screwing it up.

    If you read through there, you'll find exactly what I summarized above - nobody knows for sure what causes them. If you leave the car alone, the dealer will replace them (generally - minus internet stories - always some oddball out there). If you mod the car, certain dealers STILL replaced them.

    The fact remains, our cars use crappy pistons stock. Forged pistons are much more expensive for a production car, and would most likely lead to emissions issues believe it or not. It's a 300hp 4 cylinder production car - it will have it's issues/limitations. That doesn't mean the thing is going to fall apart on you.

    Stop freaking out. It's been an issue since 08. If it's not rings, something else tends to break anyhow - rod knock/'weak' transmissions/you name it. Always going to be something.
    Quote Originally Posted by Trainrex
    He was throwing balloons filled with sulfuric acid and shrapnel at the swat team. They finally had to take him down with rubber bullets.
    2011 STi Build Log
    -Part 1 - Reading, Data Logging, and Analyzing Data
    -Part 2 - Turbocharger 101 & Basic Boost Control
    -Part 3 - EcuFlash, Experimental Defintions, and a Drive By Wire Intro

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    Registered User Heide264's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaQuin View Post
    O man. This garbage. And I thought I purchased a reliable car. I don't plan to modify my car in anyway. The only thing I plan to do is tint my car and put overlays on.

    This is my daily driver and drive a lot for work. I'm glad I have the extended warranty of 60k/6years. I just hope SOA won't give me a hard come claim time. Either way, time is more valuable. Errr this is very frustrating... I feel so disappointed.
    Mines a daily driver as well. If you are that worried about a stock STi blowing a ring and not being able to get to work, get a back up car or find an alternate means of transportation. All cars will break. I bet you have a much higher chance of a bus not showing up for a stop than blowing a ring in a stock STi.

    Are you tracking the car or running it to 6.5k constantly your entire commute to work? If not, I wouldn't be unusually concerned. If you are, I'd plan on something breaking eventually. Possibly a ring. Probably something else first though.
    Quote Originally Posted by Trainrex
    He was throwing balloons filled with sulfuric acid and shrapnel at the swat team. They finally had to take him down with rubber bullets.
    2011 STi Build Log
    -Part 1 - Reading, Data Logging, and Analyzing Data
    -Part 2 - Turbocharger 101 & Basic Boost Control
    -Part 3 - EcuFlash, Experimental Defintions, and a Drive By Wire Intro

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    Registered User CaQuin's Avatar
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    Hmmm I'm actually driving a WRX... I just figured it would be similar issues. I dont drive my car hard at all.. I actually baby the crap out of it. I hardly go over 3k when shifting. Every once in a while I switch at 3500 to 4k. Pushed it maybe 3-4x's just to feel the turbo.

  15. #14
    Registered User Heide264's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by CaQuin View Post
    Hmmm I'm actually driving a WRX... I just figured it would be similar issues. I dont drive my car hard at all.. I actually baby the crap out of it. I hardly go over 3k when shifting. Every onscreen in a while I switch at 3500 to 4k. Pushed it maybe 3-4x's just to feel the turbo.
    I haven't seen the issue even raised on this board before this. I don't think the WRXs have tunes that are quite as prone to detonation personally. I personally think the timing in the low load and lower RPMs is the worst part of the factory tune on my STi. Seems that they jump around +/- 10 degrees of timing sporadically.

    My base timing map that I finally got to be somewhat knock free in the lower loads is on top. The stock base one is on the bottom. When I used the stock timing, I was picking up all sorts of detonation down low. They have advance maps that kick in around 1.0 load, but .5-1.2 load-ish I have no idea what they were doing personally. Didn't work well on my car.



    You'll be fine. Give it some gas.
    Quote Originally Posted by Trainrex
    He was throwing balloons filled with sulfuric acid and shrapnel at the swat team. They finally had to take him down with rubber bullets.
    2011 STi Build Log
    -Part 1 - Reading, Data Logging, and Analyzing Data
    -Part 2 - Turbocharger 101 & Basic Boost Control
    -Part 3 - EcuFlash, Experimental Defintions, and a Drive By Wire Intro

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