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I've been a car enthusiast for as long as i can remember, but I've only just started looking into working on cars. what was my mom's 1995 impreza is now officially mine. she's not in my name yet, but getting out to the DMV is headache nowadays. anyways, i'm absolutely lost on how to maintenance my impreza. i only really know things about rotaries, but even then i've never gotten my hands on one. about two years before the pandemic started she got stollen and dumped 20 miles away. there are surprisingly few issues because of that and they've mostly been taken care of. however, she's not doing to hot after sitting for five years, so i was wondering what some really basic things i can do on a tight budget to make her feel better are. 

im sure i could search a little longer and find out how to do these things, but i don't know how to word my searches and it's so tiring searching for answers rather than having answers and applying them. so really, anything you can think of that i can just do to breathe some new life into her will help me so much.

shes a base model L, 2.2L, if i remember correctly EJ22, N/A, automatic, and other than mud-flaps, fog lights, and questionable custom wheels from '98 shes bone stock. shes also not a roller, my brother took her around the block like a year and a half ago and she starts up kind of okay. ignites first try, just sounds really sad.

im honestly glad the person who ordered those wheels originally didn't pick them up. i dont know what they would have put them on but they're so butt ugly they would have ruined the car no matter what. those wheels are nightmare fuel. 

i'll add anything i forgot and images of the engine bay and those horrendous wheels when its not literally 2am.

and thank you in advance! even knowing a forum like this exists makes it a little easier to see a future for me and my soob <3

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Mileage?

Maintenance history?

Start with the basics:

Check fluid levels, fill and or change fluids as necessary.  If you don't have a Subaru maintenance book you can download the Factory Service Manual.

Fill the Tank with the best gas you can get.  A can of Heat will help with any water in the tank.

NGK copper core plugs and NGK or Subaru plug wires.

Get some miles on it and then see what else it needs:  Timing Belt, seals, gaskets....

The 95 2.2 is a great engine.

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4 hours ago, lmdew said:

Mileage?

Maintenance history?

Start with the basics:

Check fluid levels, fill and or change fluids as necessary.  If you don't have a Subaru maintenance book you can download the Factory Service Manual.

Fill the Tank with the best gas you can get.  A can of Heat will help with any water in the tank.

NGK copper core plugs and NGK or Subaru plug wires.

Get some miles on it and then see what else it needs:  Timing Belt, seals, gaskets....

The 95 2.2 is a great engine.

mileage should be at just under 200k

the maintenance history is,, not great. my dad was a do it yourself kind of guy but he knows less than me about cars and refused to watch youtube tutorials, it was strange. but when my it was my mom's daily in the first 15 years of its life, maintenance was great! i don't have a written history from either periods of it's life

also thank you for what you've given me so far!! i felt a little strange asking a question like this but i know so little which makes it difficult to ask google questions. hopefully in the future i'll have better car related vocabulary lol.

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25 minutes ago, wyatt said:

mileage should be at just under 200k

the maintenance history is,, not great. my dad was a do it yourself kind of guy but he knows less than me about cars and refused to watch youtube tutorials, it was strange. but when my it was my mom's daily in the first 15 years of its life, maintenance was great! i don't have a written history from either periods of it's life

also thank you for what you've given me so far!! i felt a little strange asking a question like this but i know so little which makes it difficult to ask google questions. hopefully in the future i'll have better car related vocabulary lol.

ah actually it's at 156k, so technically i wasn't wrong but i have no idea where i got "just under 200k". 

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15 minutes ago, lmdew said:

The Laurelwood Public House in PDX is great!

You by the Workhorse IPA and I'll do the work/subaru training, when the weather warms up.

well I'm a minor and jobless so maybe? if i have a steady job by then then this could work out,, i just wouldn't be able to join you in drinking the beer lol

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Congratulations on your New (to you) Subaru! In my opinion it is a very good choice for starting out.

My story is very much like yours. I was young and didn't have a car or a lot of money. I figured out early on that the only way I was going to own a car at that point in my life was to start with something that didn't run. I started doing simple things in my driveway. I got a phone call one day from the owner of a Service Station where I had dropped off a job application, I had totally forgotten about it. I went in to interview for the job and the station owner asked me what I wanted to do going forward with my career. I told him that I was looking for a part time job so that I could afford to buy some tools and go to school to learn how to work on my own car. His response changed the rest of my life. He said "just give me 2 years and I'll turn you in to a certified tech"! I was so stoked!

40 years later and I have the knowledge and all of the tools I'll ever need to repair and build my own cars. I am still in the industry today, and I am currently employed as the Senior Advanced Level Master Technician in a busy 9 bay shop. I mainly do general repair and drive-ability diagnosis. The need to learn new things and acquire new and different tools never ends lol.

Apologies for the long winded post, I have been stuck inside for a week fighting Covid.

Edited by Crazyeights
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I have a 96 legacy 5spd with a ej22e. Not sure if it's the same exact engine but it's gotta be very similar. I bought it with about 150k on it and it started abit rough. With unknown maintenance record I decided to go rite threw the easy stuff and it made a world of a difference.  I did the air filter, fuel filter, oil change and filter, spark plugs and wires and new drive belts along with the tensioner assembly.  All pretty cheap and easy stuff just a YouTube video away and only basic tools and knowledge needed. I think in total it costed me like $250 and I literally haven't had any issues with it after doing those easy things.  Also I used the NGK plugs and wires, simply because I've used them on several other vehicles and trust them. It's also a good idea to look for any fluid leaking anywhere it can possibly leak from, transmission, differential, engine ext. And it's worth taking a peak at the sway bar links, ball joints, and cv shaft boots just to know the current condition. After sitting that long it could cause the rubber boots to dry out and before long crack and fail...

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2 hours ago, Crazyeights said:

Congratulations on your New (to you) Subaru! In my opinion it is a very good choice for starting out.

My story is very much like yours. I was young and didn't have a car or a lot of money. I figured out early on that the only way I was going to own a car at that point in my life was to start with something that didn't run. I started doing simple things in my driveway. I got a phone call one day from the owner of a Service Station where I had dropped off a job application, I had totally forgotten about it. I went in to interview for the job and the station owner asked me what I wanted to do going forward with my career. I told him that I was looking for a part time job so that I could afford to buy some tools and go to school to learn how to work on my own car. His response changed the rest of my life. He said "just give me 2 years and I'll turn you in to a certified tech"! I was so stoked!

40 years later and I have the knowledge and all of the tools I'll ever need to repair and build my own cars. I am still in the industry today, and I am currently employed as the Senior Advanced Level Master Technician in a busy 9 bay shop. I mainly do general repair and drive-ability diagnosis. The need to learn new things and acquire new and different tools never ends lol.

Apologies for the long winded post, I have been stuck inside for a week fighting Covid.

thats pretty much how i hope things turn out for me! i'd really love to be a mechanic because cars have always been a central part of my life, especially this car. it's all i really want to think about me doing in the future. thank you for this story and i hope you have a speedy recovery!!

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1 hour ago, Liftedlego96 said:

I have a 96 legacy 5spd with a ej22e. Not sure if it's the same exact engine but it's gotta be very similar. I bought it with about 150k on it and it started abit rough. With unknown maintenance record I decided to go rite threw the easy stuff and it made a world of a difference.  I did the air filter, fuel filter, oil change and filter, spark plugs and wires and new drive belts along with the tensioner assembly.  All pretty cheap and easy stuff just a YouTube video away and only basic tools and knowledge needed. I think in total it costed me like $250 and I literally haven't had any issues with it after doing those easy things.  Also I used the NGK plugs and wires, simply because I've used them on several other vehicles and trust them. It's also a good idea to look for any fluid leaking anywhere it can possibly leak from, transmission, differential, engine ext. And it's worth taking a peak at the sway bar links, ball joints, and cv shaft boots just to know the current condition. After sitting that long it could cause the rubber boots to dry out and before long crack and fail...

thank you for the ideas of places to check!! it's dark out now and freezing so i'll check these tomorrow. 

that price really isn't bad, wow! money has been a constant stressor weighing on me while figuring out what to do with the impreza. $250 isn't all that scary! my birthday is coming up and who knows, maybe i'll be able to cover the simple maintenance costs with what i get from that (of course i'd prefer to spend that on different things and to also have a job by then, but at least if those ideal plans go south i have something to keep the impreza afloat)

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1 hour ago, Liftedlego96 said:

I have a 96 legacy 5spd with a ej22e. Not sure if it's the same exact engine but it's gotta be very similar. I bought it with about 150k on it and it started abit rough. With unknown maintenance record I decided to go rite threw the easy stuff and it made a world of a difference.  I did the air filter, fuel filter, oil change and filter, spark plugs and wires and new drive belts along with the tensioner assembly.  All pretty cheap and easy stuff just a YouTube video away and only basic tools and knowledge needed. I think in total it costed me like $250 and I literally haven't had any issues with it after doing those easy things.  Also I used the NGK plugs and wires, simply because I've used them on several other vehicles and trust them. It's also a good idea to look for any fluid leaking anywhere it can possibly leak from, transmission, differential, engine ext. And it's worth taking a peak at the sway bar links, ball joints, and cv shaft boots just to know the current condition. After sitting that long it could cause the rubber boots to dry out and before long crack and fail...

They should be the same. '95 and '96 had the EJ22 with EGR and dual port exhaust, and non-interference. Almost the same engine as in my '95 except that I swapped out my original engine for a '94 without EGR (that's a whole other fun story)

I believe in '97 the changed to the single exhaust port phase 2  EJ22.

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16 hours ago, wyatt said:

I've been a car enthusiast for as long as i can remember, but I've only just started looking into working on cars. what was my mom's 1995 impreza is now officially mine. she's not in my name yet, but getting out to the DMV is headache nowadays. anyways, i'm absolutely lost on how to maintenance my impreza. i only really know things about rotaries, but even then i've never gotten my hands on one. about two years before the pandemic started she got stollen and dumped 20 miles away. there are surprisingly few issues because of that and they've mostly been taken care of. however, she's not doing to hot after sitting for five years, so i was wondering what some really basic things i can do on a tight budget to make her feel better are. 

im sure i could search a little longer and find out how to do these things, but i don't know how to word my searches and it's so tiring searching for answers rather than having answers and applying them. so really, anything you can think of that i can just do to breathe some new life into her will help me so much.

shes a base model L, 2.2L, if i remember correctly EJ22, N/A, automatic, and other than mud-flaps, fog lights, and questionable custom wheels from '98 shes bone stock. shes also not a roller, my brother took her around the block like a year and a half ago and she starts up kind of okay. ignites first try, just sounds really sad.

im honestly glad the person who ordered those wheels originally didn't pick them up. i dont know what they would have put them on but they're so butt ugly they would have ruined the car no matter what. those wheels are nightmare fuel. 

i'll add anything i forgot and images of the engine bay and those horrendous wheels when its not literally 2am.

and thank you in advance! even knowing a forum like this exists makes it a little easier to see a future for me and my soob <3

It's lucky that you have a '95 with an Ej22. They are extremely reliable as long as you don't overheat them; and easier to work on than the Ej25D of the same era. The spark plugs are especially easy to get to compared to the EJ25d. Not that any Imprezas got the ej25 until the 2.5RS in the late 90's.

Some people seem to think the EJ22 is short on power but in my experience with my '95 Legacy L is that with the lighter base model Legacys and the Imprezas being lighter than the outbacks that the EJ22 is plenty of motor except maybe if you try to pass someone on the highway going uphill or you're trying to haul half the stuff you own in the back.

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9 hours ago, laegion said:

They should be the same. '95 and '96 had the EJ22 with EGR and dual port exhaust, and non-interference. Almost the same engine as in my '95 except that I swapped out my original engine for a '94 without EGR (that's a whole other fun story)

I believe in '97 the changed to the single exhaust port phase 2  EJ22.

I'm not sure about the 95 but my 96 ej22 has a single port exhaust? Not sure how else to identify phase 1 form phase 2 but I've been told that 96 was a transition year so it hit or miss on the single port or dual port heads. I'm not entirely sure how accurate that is though? If someone could expand on that it would be appreciated? All I know is that it's an ej22e non interference and I love it. It's my daily and for what I'm doing with it, it has enough power.

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18 hours ago, wyatt said:

also thank you for what you've given me so far!! i felt a little strange asking a question like this but i know so little which makes it difficult to ask google questions. hopefully in the future i'll have better car related vocabulary lol.

lol, we all had to start somewhere, none of us was born knowing this stuff.. even if it does seem like a few might have been.

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On 1/30/2022 at 3:57 AM, Liftedlego96 said:

I'm not sure about the 95 but my 96 ej22 has a single port exhaust? Not sure how else to identify phase 1 form phase 2 but I've been told that 96 was a transition year so it hit or miss on the single port or dual port heads. I'm not entirely sure how accurate that is though? If someone could expand on that it would be appreciated? All I know is that it's an ej22e non interference and I love it. It's my daily and for what I'm doing with it, it has enough power.

It shouldn't be a single port motor, the switchover from everything I read was in '97. Maybe that's not the original motor?
I misspoke, '97-'98 is not phase 2. Phase 2 EJ22 started in '99. The '97-'98 is a revision on the phase 1, they mainly just changed the heads and the intake, the majority of the motor stayed the same. The phase 2 motors changed quite a bit more.

If you have a single port EJ22 it is an interference engine. The piston was one of the "improvements". They sacrificed the non-interference status to gain some compression.
 

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Subaru_EJ_engine#Naturally_Aspirated_2

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16 hours ago, laegion said:

It shouldn't be a single port motor, the switchover from everything I read was in '97. Maybe that's not the original motor?
I misspoke, '97-'98 is not phase 2. Phase 2 EJ22 started in '99. The '97-'98 is a revision on the phase 1, they mainly just changed the heads and the intake, the majority of the motor stayed the same. The phase 2 motors changed quite a bit more.

If you have a single port EJ22 it is an interference engine. The piston was one of the "improvements". They sacrificed the non-interference status to gain some compression.
 

 

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Subaru_EJ_engine#Naturally_Aspirated_2

EJ22s:

95 dual port heads non interference, HLAs, old style tensioner 

96 same as 95 but single port heads

97 single port heads, interference, new style tensioner (some old style rarely seen), Solid lifters. 

99+ Phase II

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16 hours ago, laegion said:

It shouldn't be a single port motor, the switchover from everything I read was in '97. Maybe that's not the original motor?
I misspoke, '97-'98 is not phase 2. Phase 2 EJ22 started in '99. The '97-'98 is a revision on the phase 1, they mainly just changed the heads and the intake, the majority of the motor stayed the same. The phase 2 motors changed quite a bit more.

If you have a single port EJ22 it is an interference engine. 
 

 

 

No, this is a confusing moving target of guesses - 1996 is single port.

Also single port does not signify interference engine:

96 single port non interference.

97 single port interference 

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3 hours ago, idosubaru said:

 

 

No, this is a confusing moving target of guesses - 1996 is single port.

Also single port does not signify interference engine:

96 single port non interference.

97 single port interference 

I agree. My 96 is 100% non interference and single port. It's kind of a run around year between all kinds of changes. 97 I believe began the single port interference ej22 when they redesigned the pistons and eliminated the head space for the valves. 

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7 hours ago, idosubaru said:

EJ22s:

95 dual port heads non interference, HLAs, old style tensioner 

96 same as 95 but single port heads

97 single port heads, interference, new style tensioner (some old style rarely seen), Solid lifters. 

99+ Phase II

Good to know.

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7 hours ago, idosubaru said:

 

 

No, this is a confusing moving target of guesses - 1996 is single port.

Also single port does not signify interference engine:

96 single port non interference.

97 single port interference 

Not really, the only thing I was wrong about was what year the EJ22 changed to single port heads, and that is why I assumed the single port head design was part of the '97 refresh. Not that there is any info to be found on the net about this except lots of wrong opinions on this board and other boards. All the resources I've read so far don't mention anything about the single port change-over.

Also there is the fact that I keep finding that some people with a 96 EJ22 seem to have dual port and some seem to have single port.

Do you know if it was '96 or '97 they changed to HLAs? I can't recall what year they switched that; but it would make sense if it changed with the head design.

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8 hours ago, laegion said:

Not really, the only thing I was wrong about was what year the EJ22 changed to single port heads, and that is why I assumed the single port head design was part of the '97 refresh. Not that there is any info to be found on the net about this except lots of wrong opinions on this board and other boards. All the resources I've read so far don't mention anything about the single port change-over.

Also there is the fact that I keep finding that some people with a 96 EJ22 seem to have dual port and some seem to have single port.

Do you know if it was '96 or '97 they changed to HLAs? I can't recall what year they switched that; but it would make sense if it changed with the head design.

They didn’t change “to” HLAs but “from” HLAs in 1997.  

95 and 96 HLA

97 and up is not

This is all well known by folks mechanically familiar with EJ22s. There’s a couple of imprecise 97 transitions or caveats but they haven’t even come up in this thread yet  

It’s mostly confusing like any other car info because people who owned three Subarus with very little EJ22 experience comment anecdotally and make incorrect assumptions.  after all these decades the cars may not have their original engines or the year engine the current driver was “told” or “remembered” in it. people search and regurgitate inaccurate info.  Wash rinse repeat, internet convinces thousands. I hear so much bad info when people call or ask me in person and tell me what they read online. it’s not worth my time to listen to what they read online, it’s more confusing and wasteful trying to explain or counter or include that in an actual diagnosis…easier for me to ask lots of questions and diagnose myself.

Most of the other Subaru forums are filled with inaccurate info and ensuing messiness. It’s a nightmare trying to participate in them for accurate high level information unless you can recognize the few users who are good. And most people can’t because they don’t know enough to know the difference. They’re nice for “community” whatever that means “online” but otherwise I find them annoying, though I’m admittedly practical and have an engineering background to a fault when it comes to Subarus. 

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14 hours ago, idosubaru said:

They didn’t change “to” HLAs but “from” HLAs in 1997.  

95 and 96 HLA

97 and up is not

This is all well known by folks mechanically familiar with EJ22s. There’s a couple of imprecise 97 transitions or caveats but they haven’t even come up in this thread yet  

It’s mostly confusing like any other car info because people who owned three Subarus with very little EJ22 experience comment anecdotally and make incorrect assumptions.  after all these decades the cars may not have their original engines or the year engine the current driver was “told” or “remembered” in it. people search and regurgitate inaccurate info.  Wash rinse repeat, internet convinces thousands. I hear so much bad info when people call or ask me in person and tell me what they read online. it’s not worth my time to listen to what they read online, it’s more confusing and wasteful trying to explain or counter or include that in an actual diagnosis…easier for me to ask lots of questions and diagnose myself.

Most of the other Subaru forums are filled with inaccurate info and ensuing messiness. It’s a nightmare trying to participate in them for accurate high level information unless you can recognize the few users who are good. And most people can’t because they don’t know enough to know the difference. They’re nice for “community” whatever that means “online” but otherwise I find them annoying, though I’m admittedly practical and have an engineering background to a fault when it comes to Subarus. 

Sorry, yes, I meant from HLAs. The original EJ22 in my '95 Legacy L had them but if I remember correctly, when I swapped in a '94 EJ22 (of course I'm basing the year on what the seller told me), it had HLAs as well, but it didn't have EGR and a slightly different design to intake. The heads are a little different as they don't have the bung for the EGR on the driver's side cylinder head, and even though there is a boss there that seems it would be for the EGR bung...it definitely is not. It goes into a water jacket...and don't ask how I know. lol (which was fun when it came time to hook up the EGR).

This is why I have such a hard time finding useful and accurate info about "older" subarus, I am a member on the outback forum; and I've scoured nasoic and legacygt.com, etc. Most info is just people's wrong impressions. It's also why this is the only site I actually participate in; because the members seem to be more technical than the average. However even cars101 and wikipedia seem to have little info on the ej22. It's far easier to find info on the turbo motors or the ej25 in my experience.

I've only owned two EJ22's so far, and now an EZ30, so I'm no expert; but I did do a lot of research on them about 6 years ago when I was looking for a motor to swap into my '95; but like you said, there is a lot of wrong info out there, or just slightly inaccurate info, like transitions or revisions that are a year off or so. I see it here too; but not as much. That's why I usually won't comment unless I'm reasonably sure I know what I'm talking about. Obviously, this time my info wasn't quite accurate.

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