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  #1  
Unread 27th December 2013, 07:50 PM
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Default Timing Belt Question

Hi All

So I've come to the sad realisation recently that my Foz is, very soon, going to need it's timing belt replaced. I believe the last time was at 127 000km and it's now up at 231 000. I've been trying to do more and more mechanical repairs myself to teach myself as much about my engine as possible, so I'd be keen to try to have a go at this one.

My first question is, where would be the best place to get a kit from? I had a quick online search, and there are a number of kits available, largely for the US models 2.5L and 2.2L models. Second question would be, my vehicle being the 2.0L, would the kit be the same or do I need one specifically for the 2.0L?

In addition, what other maintenance could I perform along the way? As the car approaches the quarter million I know it's beginning to show it's age, so whatever I can do to improve it's health a bit I'm keen to do.

Thanks
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Unread 27th December 2013, 10:32 PM
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I need to do mine soon too lol.

AFAIK, the EJ20 needs a different belt to the EJ25, I think mine (EJ20J) is even different to the series 2/3 EJ20. More research needed!

For the 2nd belt replacement we both have to do, the water pump is a definite. I'll also be doing the tensioners & pulleys, plus also the cam seals & maybe the crank seal.
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Unread 28th December 2013, 09:16 PM
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definitely do the cam seals, a few people (including me) have had them leak between 150-200,000k. May as well change the accs belt as well. As for the water pump, i must be one of the only ej20 owners whose water pump hasn't broken. I've 240,000k on blinky iirc I've only had the timing belt done twice, cam accs belt and tensioners up front. Probably would do the water pump, if it fails now on me it'll be a headache to change.
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Unread 28th December 2013, 11:17 PM
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Pull out block and put a ej22 block in. Do top end rebuild(both heads), rings, water pump, timing belt and bearings
You could get away with it for about a grand and gain a fair amount of power.
The ej25 was the best thing I ever did. Btw my ej20 timing belt and water pump was a direct fit on the ej25 block. ..
If you know someone fairly mechanically minded to help it really isn't that hard. A Haines manual is very hand. I'd do the clutch disk while your at it too. A disk is only about $100.
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Unread 29th December 2013, 03:45 AM
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If you do the clutch plate, have the flywheel machined as well.

I'd love an EJ22
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Unread 29th December 2013, 03:50 AM
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^ I wouldn't both unless the car has 250, 000+km. Most of the time the flywheel doesn't wear out. Just do a full clutch kit which includes disk, pressure plate, housing and bearings.
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Unread 29th December 2013, 04:58 AM
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Matt, you only need to machine the flywheel and pressure plate if they have signs of slipping or scalloping. If the clutch engages smoothly, you may only need a new clutch plate (and you may as well replace the throw-out bearings, even if it isn't worn or noisy - cheap, and flaming hard to get at!).

Modern clutches don't appear to be prone to wearing out IME, unless abused.

The clutch on Roo1 was still working perfectly at 234,000 kms. Sorry that I couldn't say the same for the synchro rings! They were all pretty knotted, I think.

The SF Forester with the EJ-20 appears to be very, very similar to Roo1 ('93 Impreza) in many ways. The engine bay sure isn't the nightmare territory that Roo2's is ... Much simpler all round.

I agree with Taza - if you are going to do serious work on the engine (i.e. around a grand or more), you are probably wise to look at the costs/benefits of dropping a good EJ-22 donk in there. Not sure if it's a straight swap or not, but Taza will be able to tell you.
IMO, the SF was badly underpowered with the EJ-20, same as Roo1 was with the EJ-18 ...
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Unread 29th December 2013, 07:15 PM
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I'd definitely be doing the cam seals, tensioners and pulleys. Hadn't really though about the water pump but that is certainly a valid suggestion so I'll def be looking at that too.

As for the clutch, it's fairly new anyway, it was replaced in roughly May this year (2013) after failing in the bush, so it wouldn't be worth doing.

Taza - I have drooled a bit over your engine block thread, but I don't know how plausible it's going to be, both because I don't know if my knowledge and financial supplies are extensive enough. If the EJ22 is a straight swap then I may certainly consider it, but I suppose another consideration is how long it would leave the car off the road.
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Unread 30th December 2013, 05:10 PM
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If anyone has made a nice EJ20/EJ22 swap, i'd be interested as well...could be my 2014 project !
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Unread 30th December 2013, 09:08 PM
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Direct bolt in.
Then when you do the timing belt and water pump you get the right one for the ej22.
Just swap all sensors, manifold, engine mounts and the likes to the new block.
Drop it in, bolt it all up and your done.
You can use all the clutch, flywheel, pressure plate, etc... from the ej20.
I've seen this done with a ej22 thus the reason I did this but with the next stage up of an ej25. Due to going so much bigger engine size I needed a modified computer to control fuel and the likes. You won't need this as the 2.0l ecu can compensate for the slightly larger capacity.
It is by far the best upgrade you could do to an SF forester! It's not the increase in acceleration, it's the torque. My foz probably isn't much faster than a standard SF due to the added weight. However the torque increase is ridicules for a small N/A 4 cylinder.
I towed a whole SF forester on a 700kg car trailer without power being a single issue. All up that's over 3.5tonne and not onece did I have to hold the accelerator flat. Of course you drive appropriately to the load and road conditions..
If an ej25 is easily available go that route. I used what was avaliab to me at the time. I know you can get a low km EJ 25 for about a grand. Then you don't need to do the timing belt or anything. Just bolt it in.
However the engine has to be SOHC and from either a gen 3 outback, early gen 2 foz or gen 3 liberty. If going ej22 try to find a later model one (last made was is 1999) and you could even do a minor rebuild.

The best way I cam explain the torque difference is... in the wet I now have traction problems when driving it like I stole it, in 5th gear at 100kmhr if you put your foot down it accelerates faster than my healthy stock ej20 would in 4th gear at 100kmhr, it makes for a nice daily driver as you can happily change gears at 2400rpm through the city, you don't have to rev the ring out of it to go anywhere and when you do give it the berries it moves along fairly well for what it is.
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Last edited by taza; 30th December 2013 at 09:18 PM.
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