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Old 12-15-2017, 09:11 PM   #29
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Thanks again guys. So far code hasn’t come back and the engine is back in shape producing power. Not sure why switching the sensors did the tricks but who cares?!! This was a nice disaster to avoid!
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Old 12-16-2017, 11:01 AM   #30
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Thanks again guys. So far code hasn’t come back and the engine is back in shape producing power. Not sure why switching the sensors did the tricks but who cares?!! This was a nice disaster to avoid!
You are one of the few lucky ones where it may have ACTUALLY just been a bad sensor.

Count your blessings!! lol

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Old 12-16-2017, 11:30 AM   #31
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Thanks again guys. So far code hasnít come back and the engine is back in shape producing power. Not sure why switching the sensors did the tricks but who cares?!! This was a nice disaster to avoid!

check the sensor clearances




TSB here http://www.ft86club.com/forums/attac...1&d=1378232133


you might have just got lucky and swapping sensors got clearances in tolerance
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Old 12-17-2017, 11:53 AM   #32
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Man that procedure is complex and I don’t have any of the tools. Seems like it’s easier just to buy a few shims and see which one works best...
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Old 12-17-2017, 05:10 PM   #33
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Man that procedure is complex and I donít have any of the tools. Seems like itís easier just to buy a few shims and see which one works best...
Keep in mind that the engine was fine for 90K miles. Something changed.

If it's running normally, something changed back.

May seem like a dumb statement but believe me, it is a GREATLY underrated piece of the thought process.

The ECU is supposed to throw a different code for opens and shorts in the sensor and solenoid circuits but I have not personally witnessed one. I have dealt with enough bullshit diagnostic codes over the years to develop a healthy sense of skepticism until I gain some specific experience.
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Old 12-26-2017, 03:18 PM   #34
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I just got my first P0016 code this week with 60,000KM and I'm not even 5 months out of my powertrain warranty.

Subaru first recommended the hot oil flush, but I was skeptical of it since I've done my oil changes regularly and my Used Oil Analysis done this year came back extremely clean.

After not even being in the shop 2 hours, their next recommendation is to pull the timing cover and replace the cam sprocket which would cost about $1100. I'd rather not do this unless I've exhausted all other forms of troubleshooting first.

I've read through the TSBs that there's a shim method to fix cam codes, as well as updating the ECU (I have one of the first gens that was never updated), and even the ECU needing replacement (~$1000 for a new ECU from Subaru). I don't have any rough idle issues and my car has never stalled. The RPMs will occasionally move up and down unnecessarily at idle, but it's never actually stalled or felt like stalling.

I was close to just ordering a new ECU from eBay for $100, but then read on here they can be locked to a specific vehicle immobilizer and need to be "neutralized" before being pulled to pair them to a new vehicle. I already asked my local Subaru dealers if they'd be able to take an ECU from a donor car, but they refuse saying they're VIN locked (which I also read isn't really true).

Does anyone have experience with swapping with a used ECU and know if it's even possible to bypass the immobilizer lock? Or would it even be worth trying?

Thanks!
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Old 12-26-2017, 03:56 PM   #35
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I just got my first P0016 code this week with 60,000KM and I'm not even 5 months out of my powertrain warranty.

Subaru first recommended the hot oil flush, but I was skeptical of it since I've done my oil changes regularly and my Used Oil Analysis done this year came back extremely clean.

After not even being in the shop 2 hours, their next recommendation is to pull the timing cover and replace the cam sprocket which would cost about $1100. I'd rather not do this unless I've exhausted all other forms of troubleshooting first.

I've read through the TSBs that there's a shim method to fix cam codes, as well as updating the ECU (I have one of the first gens that was never updated), and even the ECU needing replacement (~$1000 for a new ECU from Subaru). I don't have any rough idle issues and my car has never stalled. The RPMs will occasionally move up and down unnecessarily at idle, but it's never actually stalled or felt like stalling.

I was close to just ordering a new ECU from eBay for $100, but then read on here they can be locked to a specific vehicle immobilizer and need to be "neutralized" before being pulled to pair them to a new vehicle. I already asked my local Subaru dealers if they'd be able to take an ECU from a donor car, but they refuse saying they're VIN locked (which I also read isn't really true).

Does anyone have experience with swapping with a used ECU and know if it's even possible to bypass the immobilizer lock? Or would it even be worth trying?

Thanks!
There are lots of things you can do (some free) before resorting to a new ECU. Swap cam sensor locations and/or swap OCV locations. If the code follows a sensor swap then you could have a bad sensor or require clearance adjustments. If the code follows an OCV swap then you could have a bad OCV. Flashing the ECU isn't hard either. You could probably find someone on these forums in your area that could help you out with a flash. My guess is the shop already went through all these options which is what lead them to the cam gear recommendation.
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Old 12-26-2017, 05:07 PM   #36
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There are lots of things you can do (some free) before resorting to a new ECU. Swap cam sensor locations and/or swap OCV locations. If the code follows a sensor swap then you could have a bad sensor or require clearance adjustments. If the code follows an OCV swap then you could have a bad OCV. Flashing the ECU isn't hard either. You could probably find someone on these forums in your area that could help you out with a flash. My guess is the shop already went through all these options which is what lead them to the cam gear recommendation.
Thanks for the info. I was told that the cam sensor was already swapped to the opposite side, but it didn't follow the sensor. I'll have to wait until tomorrow to confirm with the Subaru shop about if they tried the OCV swap, shim, and latest ECU update (I can't confirm with Torque if I'm running the latest rom for my year). If they've all been done I guess I'll go ahead with the sprocket change.
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Old 12-27-2017, 03:13 PM   #37
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I don't have any rough idle issues and my car has never stalled. The RPMs will occasionally move up and down unnecessarily at idle, but it's never actually stalled or felt like stalling.
I didn't have any rough idle issues or stalling either when I had P0018, so this "symptom" is not a guarantee, and is not 100% present in all cases of these codes appearing. You may however notice that your car feels sluggish, as you're probably in limp mode now.

Definitely try a few of the above suggested "remedies" before jumping into a full repair. This issue is frustrating because the light coming on and the code provided doesn't indicate the severity of the issue; it can be caused by something very simple and cheap, like a $100 OCV, or it can go all the way up the ladder and require multiple $1000's worth of repairs, with replacing the ECU and Cam Sprocket assembly.

Good luck!
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Old 12-27-2017, 03:17 PM   #38
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Thanks for the info. I was told that the cam sensor was already swapped to the opposite side, but it didn't follow the sensor. I'll have to wait until tomorrow to confirm with the Subaru shop about if they tried the OCV swap, shim, and latest ECU update (I can't confirm with Torque if I'm running the latest rom for my year). If they've all been done I guess I'll go ahead with the sprocket change.
Please let us know if the sprocket change does the trick. I have a 2013 and am going through the same thing. So far I've replaced the OCVs, cam sensors, ECM (used), and engine oil about 6 times. I've also shimmed both sensors to .052" per the TSB. I guess the next step is cam sprockets, but like you said it's expensive. I'm still logging P0018 and P0016.

By the way, I ended up ordering a $75 used 2013 ECM and changing the VIN number using techstream. Wasn't too difficult as long as you can find a laptop with Windows XP. I am using ECUtek to load in ROM files though.
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Old 12-27-2017, 03:34 PM   #39
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Guys, I can't stress enough the value in manually working the valve on the sprocket itself. Pull the OCV (solenoid) from both a good and bad cam and feel for a difference.

Start with a good one to get a feel for how it bottoms out. Then compare it to the bad one. Be gentle and look for a difference in travel and how it feels when bottoming out. In my case I distinctly felt some crap in there interfering with the plunger.

It's easy and conclusive.
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Old 12-27-2017, 03:58 PM   #40
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Guys, I can't stress enough the value in manually working the valve on the sprocket itself. Pull the OCV (solenoid) from both a good and bad cam and feel for a difference.

Start with a good one to get a feel for how it bottoms out. Then compare it to the bad one. Be gentle and look for a difference in travel and how it feels when bottoming out. In my case I distinctly felt some crap in there interfering with the plunger.

It's easy and conclusive.
You are absolutely correct. The first set of OCVs I pulled did feel just a little gritty when slowly depressing them. The new ones obviously felt smooth, which is why I was pretty confident at the time new OCVs would solve the problem.
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Old 12-27-2017, 04:21 PM   #41
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You are absolutely correct. The first set of OCVs I pulled did feel just a little gritty when slowly depressing them. The new ones obviously felt smooth, which is why I was pretty confident at the time new OCVs would solve the problem.
I didn't bother clarifying when you first mentioned that. My apologies.

The thing that is removed from the timing cover, which is called the OCV, does not actually contain any valve. It is an electromagnetically-operated pushrod.

The OCV pushes on, and balances in the middle of travel, the actual valve inside the sprocket. The plunger to which I am referring is in the center of the sprocket itself.
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Old 12-27-2017, 04:39 PM   #42
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I didn't bother clarifying when you first mentioned that. My apologies.

The thing that is removed from the timing cover, which is called the OCV, does not actually contain any valve. It is an electromagnetically-operated pushrod.

The OCV pushes on, and balances in the middle of travel, the actual valve inside the sprocket. The plunger to which I am referring is in the center of the sprocket itself.
Okay I'm with you now. So if I pull the intake OCVs, can I get a tool to stick into the sprocket valve and exercise it carefully just as the OCV solenoid rod would do? Maybe with some oil?
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