New '03 WRX Wagon Owner needing some help. - Page 2
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This is a discussion on New '03 WRX Wagon Owner needing some help. within the New Member Hangout forums, part of the Community - Meet other Enthusiasts category; Well, thinking about the P0420. I refuse to throw money at a problem until it goes away especially on a ...

  1. #16
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    Well, thinking about the P0420. I refuse to throw money at a problem until it goes away especially on a car that I'm going to eventually part out for a FFR 818. Exhaust will probably not transfer over so a waste of money but I am noticing a hesitation that may be from running too rich because of the code so I'd sure like to fix it. A mechanic will just throw money at it as well but charge me labor which I'm not paying somebody else for what I could do myselft.

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  3. #17
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    As far as the P0420 goes can I just replace the mid pipe with a catless version and be done with the rear 02 sensor altogether as long as the problem is the rear o2 sensor/cat and not a bad front o2 sensor? I know i would then need to replace the rear 02 sensor with an electronic fix/ o2 simulator to remove the cel code but I wouldn't have to buy a new cat and I'd not have to buy a new rear 02 sensor which would save money and not do any harm to the subie. As far as I know on the 01-04 wrx the rear 02 sensor only moniters the cat condition and does NOT have anything to do with the fuel trim so should be safe to delete both the rear 02 and the cat correct?

    I know that if the front o2 sensor is bad then I will just replace it but the cat and rear o2 sensor aren't really necessary especially since I don't live in a state that does smog testing.

  4. #18
    Captain James of the SS Impreza has gone down with the ship Drews's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zax View Post
    Are you judging this based off sound alone? My transmission makes all sorts of racket when in gear accelerating and decelerating. It has for 40K miles.
    My transmission is pretty loud all the time.

    OP, I'd check to see if maybe the previous owner upgraded the trans mount or pitch stop. Those tend to make the transmission seem loud since it creates NVH.
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  5. #19
    Captain James of the SS Impreza has gone down with the ship Drews's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dsmithwc04 View Post
    As far as the P0420 goes can I just replace the mid pipe with a catless version and be done with the rear 02 sensor altogether as long as the problem is the rear o2 sensor/cat and not a bad front o2 sensor? I know i would then need to replace the rear 02 sensor with an electronic fix/ o2 simulator to remove the cel code but I wouldn't have to buy a new cat and I'd not have to buy a new rear 02 sensor which would save money and not do any harm to the subie. As far as I know on the 01-04 wrx the rear 02 sensor only moniters the cat condition and does NOT have anything to do with the fuel trim so should be safe to delete both the rear 02 and the cat correct?

    I know that if the front o2 sensor is bad then I will just replace it but the cat and rear o2 sensor aren't really necessary especially since I don't live in a state that does smog testing.
    It's not something I'd suggest. Also, figuring out which O2 sensor is the culprit is easy. It *should* say P0420 bank 1 or bank 2 depending on what you're using to read codes. I believe bank 1 would be front and bank 2 would be rear.
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  6. #20
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    Well, i replaced the rear o2 sensor and disconnected the battery to reset the code. Ive driven 145 miles today and the cel hasnt turned back on so far...

    I noticed a low frequency thumping that sounds like it is coming from a rear wheel, possibly the driver side. It sounds like a wheel bearing but doesnt make a noise for every revolution and appears to be a little random. I checked for play in all four wheels and didnt notice anything strange...

    Oh, cleaning the maf got rid of the hesitation issues i was having. Engine running more smooth during acceleration after plug change and maf cleaning.

  7. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by dsmithwc04 View Post
    Well, i replaced the rear o2 sensor and disconnected the battery to reset the code. Ive driven 145 miles today and the cel hasnt turned back on so far...

    I noticed a low frequency thumping that sounds like it is coming from a rear wheel, possibly the driver side. It sounds like a wheel bearing but doesnt make a noise for every revolution and appears to be a little random. I checked for play in all four wheels and didnt notice anything strange...

    Oh, cleaning the maf got rid of the hesitation issues i was having. Engine running more smooth during acceleration after plug change and maf cleaning.
    Hopefully that does it for you! You may have to drive for a bit longer before your ecu determines readiness. I know with my old car if you turned the key to accessories and waiting, if the cel blinked 4-5 times before it went off then the ecu was still "testing." Maybe someone can confirm if this is the case with the wrx, so the OP has another way to gauge if his repair was the end of it?
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    Well, after driving 300+ miles today my cel light never came on. I suddenly remembered the code for the evap vent was not on! To check that it was actually operating correctly I stopped and filled up the gas tank. It didn't click off after every .2 gallons like it did before.

    So... replacing the rear o2 sensor not only cured the P0420 code, it also cured the evap canister vent solenoid problem. I now have no check engine light on and it only cost $80. It is a good day indeed. Still need to figure out the tranny noise and find out what the hallow clunking noise is in the rear divers side corner. Didn't exactly sound like a wheel bearing and didn't oscillate like one would if it were bad.

  9. #23
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    Not so fast. The cel came back on so rear o2 was not the problem. Will now try the front o2 sensor.

    TBH, frustration is setting in. I'm losing respect for Subaru because they seam to build cars that are plagued with the major issues especially when concerning the drive line. People are buying new cars that are noisy from the factory and seam to accept it because its a Subaru??? I think it's unnacceptable in my opinion. I don't blame them for my car as any car with 100k miles could have issues. But the more I Google and search on the forums the more problems I find with subarus than any other car I have ever owned. I will not be recommending Subies to any friends or families or atleast the early wrx as they seam to be made of glass.

    The only reason I bought a wrx is because I plan on building a FR 818 using the wrx driveline and some other misc parts. Is there not anybody out there that has had the same problem/noise with their trannsmission/center diff that could help me. A lot of stabs in the dark on this when it seams to be such a common issue with these cars. I'm open to any suggestion anybody has and I will try it but its just getting frustrating.

    I don't think there is a problem with the tranny itself. Correct me if I'm wrong but since it glides into every gear with no issues (reverse can sometimes be difficult but not that bad) and is smooth other than the ginding noise maybe it's the center diff? Bearing? ?????

  10. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by dsmithwc04 View Post
    Not so fast. The cel came back on so rear o2 was not the problem. Will now try the front o2 sensor.

    TBH, frustration is setting in. I'm losing respect for Subaru because they seam to build cars that are plagued with the major issues especially when concerning the drive line. People are buying new cars that are noisy from the factory and seam to accept it because its a Subaru??? I think it's unnacceptable in my opinion. I don't blame them for my car as any car with 100k miles could have issues. But the more I Google and search on the forums the more problems I find with subarus than any other car I have ever owned. I will not be recommending Subies to any friends or families or atleast the early wrx as they seam to be made of glass.
    Calm down. Don't let one irritating problem taint your whole view on the brand. Of course you'll find broken cars and angry people on the internet. People like to vent a whole lot more than they do brag, imo. The same is true for internet reviews. You're far more likely to post something angry if whatever you bought doesn't work, but how likely are you to post a positive review for something that works fine? I never have.

    The fact is that Subaru transmissions are pretty noisy. Mine makes all manner of gear noises, although it's never grinding or harsh noises, just the sound of gears doing their thing. I'm sure all AWD cars make similar noises, but Subaru elected to have ZERO sound deadening to save cost, and the side effect is noise. If you've ever removed any of the interior components, you'll see what I mean. There is NONE in there. I'm sure Dynamatting around the transmission tunnel and front floor would kill a lot of that noise.

    All of that said, I agree that your noise probably isn't normal, and I also agree your transmission is mostly likely just fine. Could you describe that clunking noise in a bit more detail? If it definitely comes from a corner, it might be the brake disk tolerance stack-up. It's a thing I've seen pop up in a couple places (several cases on NASIOC, MichaelWFox's car, and mine as well). There's a dimension on the brake dust shield that in rare cases can interfere with the brake disk. It makes a sort of scratching noise, but only under specific circumstances. For me, it's when I lift off throttle in low gears, for Michael, it was when he turned right at low speed. It sounds awful, but it isn't hurting anything, it's just a metal-on-metal rub. Usually, this issue only comes up if the brake disks were replaced fairly recently. You can fix it by either milling the small lip off of the disk, or cutting part of the dust shield.

    Check out Michael's thread on the topic and see if the symptoms are similar to what you're hearing.
    Please help me figure out this noise!

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  11. #25
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    I appreciate the response Rambo. I'm currently loading a couple of vids on youtube to post here so people can get a better idea of what it sounds like. TBH, I don't know if its the tranny, center diff, or what. I don't mind a little noise as long as its not hurting anything but like you mentioned, I also don't think this is a normal sound. It definately sounds like its coming from the tranny/diff as other people have confirmed this while riding in the car.

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    Here is the first video.


  13. #27
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    Here is the second video.



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    To be even more clear on the sound I hear... if any of you have jacked up a 2 wheel drive car and spun a front wheel you can almost hear the rotor grinding against the brake pads. It is a sort of grinding sound and almost sounds like switching the radio to am inbetween channels and all you hear is static.

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