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What happened to my Subaru wagon?


DankTank

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I'm a bit confused right now...

So, I bought a 1992 Subaru Loyale off CL with the intention to turn it into a 4x4 trail buggy. The ad says the car won't idle. Fine. Worst case I can scrap it and even make money off the deal.

I get there and sure enough the car dies instantly even though it starts nice. it stays running if you give it gas, but out comes this big, white cumulonimbus. For $300 title included, that's good enough for me. So, I get it towed home with full intentions on changing the head gaskets. But, when I start it again to make sure its the gasket... no smoke. Check the coolant, perfectly fine. Start it once again to make sure I'm not crazy and suddenly it idles fine. I even drove it up to Sonic for a burger. Ran like a champ the whole way and hasn't stalled since...

It's scheduled for an inspection on Monday, but I wanted to get some opinions here first. Details:

1992 Subaru Loyale 4WD Wagon
1.8L EA82 H4
5-Speed Manual
258,000 mi on ODO

The oil was way overfilled when I got it, and was changed before I got it home.
 


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RonD

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ALL fuel injected engines use an IAC(idle air control) Valve, basically a controlled vacuum leak that the computer controls.
Thats is because there are no Jets to suck extra fuel from when you manually adjust idle

So see what the IAC is called in Subaru land and that is what you should clean.

Fuel injection computers all have Choke Mode, when any engine is cold it needs extra fuel to start and to stay running, Choke Mode is set by Coolant Temperature, Fords use ECT(engine coolant temp) sensor, Subaru will use similar.

If your ECT sensor was showing warm coolant when it was cold then engine couldn't stay running unless you manually added more gasoline, i.e. pushed down on gas pedal
 

RayInStl

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The smoke could have been excess condensation in the exhaust system from sitting. Did the smoke smell? Coolant will smell sweet and be bright white, gas will smell... like gas and be black, oil will smell like a dump truck and will be bluish. lol.

I agree, IAC sounds likely here! I had a taurus that did the same thing. Ran great down the road but would die at stops unless you gave some gas. Cleaned both the IAC and the throttlebody an voila! no more idle problems.
 

pjtoledo

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I'm a bit confused right now...

So, I bought a 1992 Subaru Loyale off CL with the intention to turn it into a 4x4 trail buggy. The ad says the car won't idle. Fine. Worst case I can scrap it and even make money off the deal.

I get there and sure enough the car dies instantly even though it starts nice. it stays running if you give it gas, but out comes this big, white cumulonimbus. For $300 title included, that's good enough for me. So, I get it towed home with full intentions on changing the head gaskets. But, when I start it again to make sure its the gasket... no smoke. Check the coolant, perfectly fine. Start it once again to make sure I'm not crazy and suddenly it idles fine. I even drove it up to Sonic for a burger. Ran like a champ the whole way and hasn't stalled since...

It's scheduled for an inspection on Monday, but I wanted to get some opinions here first. Details:

1992 Subaru Loyale 4WD Wagon
1.8L EA82 H4
5-Speed Manual
258,000 mi on ODO

The oil was way overfilled when I got it, and was changed before I got it home.

boxer style engine? flat 4, too much oil? Hmmm, I wonder.....
 
Last edited:

adsm08

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2WD / 4WD
4WD
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31X10.50X15

DankTank

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Well....... solved it.

Oil in the intake. What I thought was white smoke was burning oil, which is why it went away a couple starts after I changed it. The car was burning off the leftover oil from when it flowed through the purge line (I guess that can happen). It also wouldn't idle because it was sucking in oil. I Pulled the whole intake apart and power washed it as well as changed the filter.

I now have a nice 4WD Subaru that only cost me $550 total.
 

RayInStl

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Can't beat a good deal because the previous owner effed up!
 

Captain Ledd

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It was probably whipping that oil into a foam from hitting the crank (which is really bad for the engine) and then sucking it all up through the PCV valve because that was the only place it could go. Technically the PCV should have stopped it, but they clog up and stop working way more than manufacturers claim. I'd change out that little guy too while your at it, it's pretty cheap.
 

DankTank

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Thanks for the tip, Cap'!
 


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