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Discussion Starter #1
First, let me start this off by saying I love what the BRZ is. However, a week and a half a go, had the CEl and slip light come on, code P0017. Had rough idle after a while. went home checked code and cleared it. Called dealer and went in, my mistake by clearing code. Dealer said they could do anything since there was no code. So, didn't even want to drive it, but a few days later drove it again and CEL and Slip light on again. This time I didn't check code, thought it would be the same. Called dealer to have them look at it. Since I am anal about cars, changed oil at 1000 miles to make sure any initial metal wear is out of the oil, all this happened at 1250 + miles. The dealer claims they talked with Subaru tech line and stated that since I used I Fram Tough Guard filter, that was the first thing to eliminate. So, $75 dollars later for an oil change...like that is the problem. I told the service guy, you have left me with no choice. He stated that Subaru's are very sensitive to after market items (oil filters included!!!). After I got home, I wrote to Subaru of America expressing my displeasure with the service to date and the fact this is my first Subaru and I am very disappointed. since I have bought cars, from 1984 , only owned Toyota's, Honda's and one Mazda, never had something like this. I only did PM on them. Waiting to see what happens. Planning on driving a while to see if it happens again tomorrow.
 

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Discussion Starter #2
Ok, right now I am ready to warn everyone not to use Fram filters, it was a Tough Guard. Drove it quite a bit today and nothing. I am almost ready to think that the Fram filter doesn't have the flow that the OEM filter does. Will keep you posted if it happens again now that I am running the OEM filter. I was very skeptical of the advice, but willing to admit I was wrong if that was the case.
 

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Are you saying that when you switched BACK to the OEM filter that everything is OK now? Why did you switch to an aftermarket filter in the first place? especially when under warranty? Being anal seems expensive to me. There has been much discussion about when to have the first oil change in many, many forums.

My conclusions are:
1. Engines are manufactured to much higher standards than they used to be and 'metal wear' is not now an issue.
2. Lubricating oils are also made to much higher standards - just be sure to use the OEM or equivalent grade oil.
3. My first oil change was at 3000 and I am confident that, provided I don't abuse the engine and maintain OEM service recommendations, I will not have a problem for the life of ownership or 100,000 plus miles. Proviso: I do not race cars and anything below the redline on the tach is OK.

Let us know if you get a response back from Subaru. Your use of the word 'incompetent' may have been an overreaction. Also, you may want to let Subaru know that everything is OK now if, in fact, it is.

Ok, right now I am ready to warn everyone not to use Fram filters, it was a Tough Guard. Drove it quite a bit today and nothing. I am almost ready to think that the Fram filter doesn't have the flow that the OEM filter does. Will keep you posted if it happens again now that I am running the OEM filter. I was very skeptical of the advice, but willing to admit I was wrong if that was the case.
 

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FRAM is known to make some pretty awful filters. The price saving from Subaru's own filter is trivial. Why do that to your engine?

Wix is one of the more reputable aftermarket manufacturers. Still, OEM is just a no brainer during the warranty.

There is no need to change the oil or filter any more frequently than Subaru recommends. Even after break in there is no need to worry about metal bits, they are all in the filter. Subaru will have bench tested and real world tested this engine and know exactly what happens to the oil at any stage. Trust them. Believe that their engineers truly know what their engines need.
 

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I ran FRAM filters on my evo before I switched to AMSOIL and never had any issues. Must be a Subaru thing.

To piggy-back off BRZfan, I also think your verbiage was a bit harsh. It sounds like they took care of your issue. As far as the oil changes go, you're really throwing money down the shitter. If you just want to manage the metal bits in your oil, just get a magnetic oil plug. Changing your oil every 1k miles is 1000% (not a typo) unnecessary. The synthetic oils we're using is good to much more than 3,000 miles, and other oils are good to much much much longer.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
First let me try answer some of the questions and comment.

1. Since I bought my first car in 1984, have always changed my oil at the first 1000 mi, and every 3-4000 after that. Even in the a model that was subject to a lawsuit for sludge build-up I never had a problem. The cost me me is not an issue doing it that often. I keep my cars usually 10-12 years.
2. Always used Fram and never had a problem.
3. The dealer I bought it from is an hour away that offers free oil changes, the local one is 15 minutes away.
4. Yes, my words were a bit harsh at first, but in 30 years I never had a check engine light or anything needing a repair, only PM's had to be done.
5. I ask the dealer who I took it to, since the oil was just changed (Penzoil Platinum 0-20W, why not just change the filter...said they can't...kinda BS there.
Bottom line, I am anal about my cars.
My second post was to alert anyone about my problem with the filter so they didn't run into the same mistake. Also, Subaru recommends there filter, they should state only to use theirs as some may restrict oil flow or what ever it did.
 

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That code is for crank position and cam position sensor. This affects ignition timing.

Does Subaru use an oil pressure activated cam advance mechanism?

It is hard to see how oil could throw an engine code related to emissions performance.

You are wasting your money changing oil more often than Subaru recommends. Changing oil without changing the filter isn't sensible. In fact it is the filter that requires changing. Oil now lasts longer than the filter.

Testing shows no breakdown of synthetic oils in over 20,000 miles of engine use.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
I wonder also how the oil flow or what every the filter caused threw the code(s), hence my skepticism when they told me that. It did seem like timing as it was remarkably less power and idle was jumping around.

Like I said, wasting my money on oil is affecting only me and my wallet. The reason I asked to only change the filter was the new oil only had 250 mi on it or so.

Oil is such a debated subject and everyone has their opinions, so I will not get into that or there will be 500 posts started. But many of my friends who all have a opinion on oil and state I do it too often, fail to actually change the other fluids on the recommend schedule...like brake, power steering, transmission, coolant, etc. I even get remarks from service centers on how well maintained my cars are.
 

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Was it possible the sump was overfilled?

The reason I mentioned the cam timing was an assumption that oil pressure or quantity could somehow affect cam position and thereby throw a code.

Otherwise I suspect you dealer either intentionally or incompetently associated the code with the oil change and coincidentally the clearing of the code occurred when the actual fault disappeared.

On the other hand if the fault remains the code will just pop up again.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Not overfilled, always double check - after filling and running after a few minutes, then check again an hour or so later. Thanks
 

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Don't change the factory fill too early! You are removing beneficial molybdenum (from the factory fill and from the assembly lube) and higher amounts of ZDDP than typical off the shelf oils. This could lead to higher oil consumption in the future. This is not 1984 so you do not need to worry about removing metal bits from your engine!:D

There are probably hundreds of people that run only aftermarket oil filters on the BRZ, but most do not meet Subaru's bypass spec of 23 psi's (I'm pretty sure the BRZ is the same as other Subaru's). The Fram Tough Guard is 9-15 psi's.

Part Number TG9688

Product Type Tough Guard Lube Filter

Anti-Drain Valve YES
Gasket I.D. 2.13"
Gasket O.D. 2.42"
Gasket Thickness .2"
Gasket Usage Base
Product Height 3.08"
Product I.D. 20mmx1.5mm
Product O.D. 3.02"
Relief Valve Setting PSI 9-15

A dealer will do anything to get out of paying for warranty coverage. For you to win the argument that the oil filter did not cause the problem, you would probably have to hire an attorney, an engine expert, a lubrication expert, and an oil filter expert!

-Dennis
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Thank you for the info, the PSI issue was great to know. Wish Subaru would state that in the manual. As far a molybdenum and ZDDP, there are many schools of thought. ZDDP is very necessary for older cars , but the prevailing thought is not so much for newer engines. Also, the dealer doesn't pay the warranty coverage, the manufacturer pays the dealer, if they agree it is covered, a flat-rate...which is lower than we pay of course. Again, really appreciate the info and I hope others learn from my situation on the filter.
 

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Thank you for the info, the PSI issue was great to know. Wish Subaru would state that in the manual. As far a molybdenum and ZDDP, there are many schools of thought. ZDDP is very necessary for older cars , but the prevailing thought is not so much for newer engines. Also, the dealer doesn't pay the warranty coverage, the manufacturer pays the dealer, if they agree it is covered, a flat-rate...which is lower than we pay of course. Again, really appreciate the info and I hope others learn from my situation on the filter.
Someone from the Forester forum emailed Idemitsu about the factory fill oil, but it was more so to do with the moly. The only thing that Idemitsu would say about the factory fill is that the moly helps with fuel economy (for one), but he wouldn't go into any other details about the factory fill except to say it was more robust in the additive treatment than the dealer oil. I realize that older cars with flat tappet cams do need more ZDDP, but the factory fill does have higher levels than the oil that the dealer sells so there must be a reason for it. Idemitsu did say that's it's best to follow the manufacturers advise.

I know there are many schools of thought on changing the factory fill, but I just wouldn't dump it too early when used oil analyses on factory fill do not show anything alarming as far as high wear metals go.

The BRZ was probably written by Toyota. It makes WAY more sense than current Subaru manuals which no longer allow thicker viscosities, except for allowing "5W-40 conventional for replenishment" and no such oil exists.:D The dealer is reimbursed for warranty work by SoA. When I owned a WRX my dealer covered a repair under warranty and SoA refused to reimburse them because they disagreed that the Service Advisor wrote it up as a warranty claim.

-Dennis
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Well, an update, the problem is back even after Subaru's recommended fix, will be back at the dealer Friday..hopefully they can really determine the problem. BTW, the rep from SoA has been very good and wants to be updated on the results.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Well, new ECU will arrive next Wednesday. That should take of the CEL and Slip Light problem. Finally looks like a fix is coming.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Well, after five days of driving and almost 250 mi later, no more CEl or Slip Light. Finally fixed.
 
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