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Guest Message by DevFuse

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Engine swap on a 1991 loyale. worth it?

engine swap timing valve

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2 replies to this topic

#1 subarunewb



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  • Edmonton, AB

Posted 26 February 2013 - 07:57 PM

I have a 1991 loyale that has little rust on the body, new fuel pump, water pump, winter and summer tires. needs a rack and pinion at some point but otherwise great little car. One of the timing belts broke and i suspect while fixing I some how bunged up a valve or i guess it may have happened when the belt went. Engine wont crank past 340ish degrees. Have yet to take the covers off to check. I plan on going through the steps again to do the belts if everything looks alright. Curious to know if swapping out the engine is worth it and can I put in something that is more current with more power. not ready to give up on it as I really enjoy driving it. Also , suggestions on where to get a used but good motor. Im in the edmonton, alberta, canada area.I havent done too much in the way of car mechanics but do enjoy it and can follow a manual.  Any suggestions or comments are greatly appreciated. thanks guys. 

#2 Subaru_dude


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Posted 26 February 2013 - 08:19 PM

That engine is the EA82 engine. It's alright, tends to leak oil though and the head design is weak and also the radiator is not enough for that engine so it's a good combination for head failure later on down the road. It's a non-interference engine so breaking a timing belt shouldn't do anything to the valves. Engine swap wise, you could go with a 2.2 liter (EJ22) out of an earlier model Legacy, there's alot of wiring involved and it's time consuming but doable. There's write-ups here on the site for the EA-EJ engine swap. An easier and quicker swap that doesn't yield any power but gives you a more reliable and easier to work on engine is the EA81 swap. You'll have to add some wire to the distributor plug and take the disty to a machine shop to have some parts on it machined and also I think the engine mount holes in the front sub-frame may have to be reamed out. Bolts straight to the transmission and exhaust. It's also smaller in size so there's more room in the engine bay. The EA81 is a carbed engine from the factory so it's slightly lower in compression but you'll hardly notice the difference in power. The EA81 also has no timing belts which is also a huge plus.

#3 djellum


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Posted 26 February 2013 - 10:00 PM

I dont know what methods you used to do the belts, but there are multiple marks on the flywheel, some for doing timing and some for installing the belts.  you may have used the wrong ones.  theres a video on youtube and in the manual here on the site (by Milesfox I think?)


nothing wrong with the EA82, but I wouldn't do any full rebuilds or major work on it if it were me.  it costs about $650-$700 for all the conversion parts to the EJ (clutch, spacers, wire harness cut down by someone who knows what they are doing) so once you get over $1k for the work on the EA the EJ starts looking better and better.  more reliable, easier to find parts, and double the horsepower.


cheapest option is almost always to fix what you have.

Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: engine, swap, timing, valve

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