02 WRX Assistance/ideas for an engine rebuild
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This is a discussion on 02 WRX Assistance/ideas for an engine rebuild within the Maintenance, service, and repair forums, part of the Tutorials & DIY category; I would like to apologize in advance if their is already a thread for this topic...I didn't see one when ...

  1. #1
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    02 WRX Assistance/ideas for an engine rebuild

    I would like to apologize in advance if their is already a thread for this topic...I didn't see one when I searched for rebuilds

    I am the proud owner of an 02 WRX wagon and something terrible has happened to my baby!!

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    I have done some research and also discovered that ours is an interference engine meaning that I most probably have damaged my valves and pistons also.

    So I come to you my fellow WRX fans for assistance/ideas/snarky comments on what I should do, parts I should acquire,and reputable places to buy said parts. I have a manual and have already replaced my clutch and flywheel so I am not without some skill under the hood, but I am also nervous because the engine is the heart and soul of a car. I am currently not interested in any major mods/HP tweaks as this is my daily driver and I can't afford many performance parts. I figure if I am going to be replacing pistons and valves though that I might as well replace anything else to add longevity to my baby. I am fighting with myself on what I should or shouldn't get, so here is the list so far:

    Must have
    Rebuild Kit w/ gaskets, pistons, rings, timing kit with belt, oil and waterpump-$580 from ebay seller mizumoauto
    Left-hand (US passenger side) Timing Cover-$22 from ebay seller fast-imports
    Left-hand (US passenger side) Intake Camshaft Timing Sprocket-$72 from FlatIronsTuning.com
    Valves-$115 from import image racing

    Thinking of
    Rest of the camshaft timing sprockets
    Valve Springs
    Valve Guides
    Motor Mounts

    Thank you for letting me talk your collective ears off, and for any and all advice. You are all awesome.
    2002 WRX
    Now packed with more dirt goodness!!!

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  3. #2
    Pro Manscaper Mikie13's Avatar
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    Honestly, it might be easier for you to find a used long block from an 02-05 and swap that in as opposed to trying to do a teardown and complete rebuild yourself. Might be less time consuming as well since it'd be a simple swap.
    The Hawk-Eye Alliance #90|The Blobeye Syndicate #0|The Stink-Eye Mob #0|N.E.R.D. Founding Member & #3
    2012 Lightning Red WRX Sedan
    Stock...for now Soon to be OpenSource tuned by: Mattypants @ WTF Tuning

  4. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mikie13 View Post
    Honestly, it might be easier for you to find a used long block from an 02-05 and swap that in as opposed to trying to do a teardown and complete rebuild yourself. Might be less time consuming as well since it'd be a simple swap.
    That is also an option...thank you for bringing that up. Need to try to keep the monetary cost as low as possible without sacrificing to much on quality (man I hate being poor). But that option could be a good lead into my next fun adventure, building a performance engine
    2002 WRX
    Now packed with more dirt goodness!!!

  5. #4
    Registered User Obeisance's Avatar
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    I'm interested in hearing about how this damage happened, if you're interested in telling...
    David - '05 WRX

  6. #5
    Pro Manscaper Mikie13's Avatar
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    Looks like timing jumped or the belt crapped out to me...tensioner perhaps.
    The Hawk-Eye Alliance #90|The Blobeye Syndicate #0|The Stink-Eye Mob #0|N.E.R.D. Founding Member & #3
    2012 Lightning Red WRX Sedan
    Stock...for now Soon to be OpenSource tuned by: Mattypants @ WTF Tuning

  7. #6
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    Looks like the timing gear broke to me.
    '02 Midnight Black Pearl WRX wagon, 5-speed 207k miles
    factory short throw, triple gauge pod, premium sound
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  8. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by white-lightning View Post
    Looks like the timing gear broke to me.
    Timing gear, for lack of a better word, exploded. Broke through the timing cover
    2002 WRX
    Now packed with more dirt goodness!!!

  9. #8
    Registered User Obeisance's Avatar
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    That is an interesting event... did the cam lose lubrication and seize up or something?
    David - '05 WRX

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    Quote Originally Posted by Obeisance View Post
    I'm interested in hearing about how this damage happened, if you're interested in telling...
    Issue seemed to manifest the day before the timing gear broke. Car was idling low and running rough, had the codes scanned and it gave misfire codes. I figured it was either clogged injectors or plugs. I bought new NGK iridiums to replace but didn't get to it the next day like I planned. On the next day, this happened. Started off a stop light, got through two gears and at the shift to third the engine just died. Pulled my stalled car to the side of the road and parked it. Came back the next day to look at it in the light and got the awesome picture above. Other than the rough engine and the codes, I had no other warning.
    2002 WRX
    Now packed with more dirt goodness!!!

  11. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Obeisance View Post
    That is an interesting event... did the cam lose lubrication and seize up or something?
    That I haven't been able to check yet. The car is still parked, I am trying to figure out whether to tow it home or to a shop. The one mechanic I talked to told me the same thing as Mikie13, new engine. Before discovering the gaping hole in the timing cover I had tried to start it and the engine will crank but obviously no fire.
    2002 WRX
    Now packed with more dirt goodness!!!

  12. #11
    Registered User Ingo's Avatar
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    Do you have space? IT might be worth to consider taking the old engine and putting it to the side, install a used engine. Then, with time and saved money, build an engine and swap in when ready.

    P.S. I think you're right, that engine has valves/pistons shot and would need quite a bit of loving care. And in a total re-build over time you can also make sure bearings, oil pump and all these little things are properly taken care of...
    You can't have everything - where would you put it?

  13. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ingo View Post
    Do you have space? IT might be worth to consider taking the old engine and putting it to the side, install a used engine. Then, with time and saved money, build an engine and swap in when ready.
    We are considering this option as well. Would be able to get it back on the road sooner.

    Quote Originally Posted by Ingo View Post
    P.S. I think you're right, that engine has valves/pistons shot and would need quite a bit of loving care. And in a total re-build over time you can also make sure bearings, oil pump and all these little things are properly taken care of...
    Agreed, and I am trying to make sure that I get all the parts I need for a good rebuild. I like the idea of getting a second engine and then upgrading the current engine. Found a couple used EJ205's on Ebay for under $2,000 (before shipping), just trying to collect all the information I can before plunging in a direction.

    P.S. Your GIF is hypnotizing/distracting lol
    2002 WRX
    Now packed with more dirt goodness!!!

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