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S

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Discussion Starter #1
People,
I've got a 2001 Forester S auto that I've been having CEL problems with since last july. The code pulled by the dealership is a catalytic converter in-efficiency code. Unfortuanetly my car is past the 80k mileage for federal replacement with 97,000 miles. This is the strange thing though. At first adding chevron fuel additive would turn the CEL light off for a month at time, gradually decresing to no time at all. Then I started using a carburater/fuel injector cleaner additive which also worked very well at first, with a gradually decreasing affect. The dealership of course wants +$2,000 plus to replace the catalytic converter. My question is how do I go about attacking this problem. I've had a recent tune up, fuel filter, air filter. Would I be best off to replace the o2 sensors first since I'm not sure if they've ever been replaced? Or is there an aftermarket supplier for a catalytic converter that I should pursue instead of an OEM replacement. I know stromung makes one that I could pick up, but I've also heard that since it is a high flow unit that most people still have their CEL come on. Any advice would be apprecitated! Thanks to all! :? :bigok:
 

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The Modfather
2019 Impreza 5dr Sport - Manual
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8,052 Posts
This may get rid of the code:

http://www.scoobymods.com/forums/showthread.php?t=5468

It could be just the sensor, in that case you can replace the sensor:

http://www.scoobymods.com/forums/showthread.php?t=5464

The rear sensor only is there to tell how the cat is working and won't effect you MPG's or performance like the front sensor will.

I found this place here:

http://tinyurl.com/j7lpx

to have good prices.

PS welcome, also if you can't see the pics in my scoobymods links you will need to register on the site but it's free.
 
S

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Well I guess I'm looking for advice on what to do next. Should I just go ahead and replace the cat? Or should I replace the sensors first? It looks like for cat's some people have liked the 'Eastern' cat. Can anyone comment on installation costs for that, or a good supplier? Thanks to all! :drive: :D
 

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The Modfather
2019 Impreza 5dr Sport - Manual
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sensor's cheaper, but the fix is even cheaper than that.
 
J

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Discussion Starter #5
My 98 showed a P0420 code at the dealer yesterday. The CEL has been on for a while, they told me I needed a "front" catalytic converter. $650 total parts and labor. An independent foreign car garage said I needed the front and back catalytic converters for an $880 toal cost. Does the car have two catalytic converters? Neither said anything about the oxygen sensors.
It's also well past timing belt time (150,000 mi.) Should the tensioner be changed as well? The garage suggested I change the water pump because everything was open to get to it while they were replacing the belt. Should I pay the extra $100 to replace the pump?
Also looking at valve cover gaskets, both sides, and front and rear cam/engine seals. Going to be a pretty big bill but I've not put any other major $ into it in eight years!
Anyone, any thoughts?
thanks,
jim
 

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If you haven't done a "CEL reset" ...do one. If the CEL comes back on....you will need to address the code.

A sensor (O2) could solve it and certainly <$$$. If not...well you will just have to eat a new cat.

If the timing belt is going to be replaced ....I reccomend that you also replace the water pump and water hoses......it will save you $$$$/time . The belt tensioner only needs to be replaced if it is bad.

Seems like I see more CEL issues lately and can't help but wonder if the ethanol thingy is partly to blame. I've heard that stations in the NE are having to purge/clean storage tanks to preclude issues with the ethanol that is being added (E10/E20). I Recently had to replace an O2 sensor as the result of using the infamous NE winter gas.

OK.....my .02
 
S

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Discussion Starter #7
Well, it seems like it would be around 500-600 dollars to get the O2 sensors replaced at a garage. The dealership gave me a quote of $2,000 for the cat replacement. Another garage gave me a quote of $1500. Sounds like I can get an 'Eastern' cat for about $260 bucks, then I'd have to pay to get it installed. If I could replace the O2 sensors myself that would probably be the cheapest route, but I have no lift, no garage, and a sloped driveway, and most likely not the correct tools. So I'm guessing it would be tuff to do the O2's on my own, unless someone is in the MN or IA area that could help me over a weekend? Other than that I think my best option is to get the 'Eastern' cat and have someone install it, I'm guessing the install would cost around $250 plus the $260 for the cat for a grand total of around $500. Don't most people agree that I'd be better off replacing the cat for $500 then replacing the O2 sensors for $500 ? Any opinions here people? Thanks again for all your advice. :Banane29:
 

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Yikes......who quoted you $500 for O2 sensors.....buying from Subaru is only about $120 for the front sensor.......shop around for a Bosch for about $70.....get a local garage to install it. Note that the front sensor is the one most likely to need replacement.

I agree that a CAT is $$$$$ ...don't know to many options other than shopping around.

BUT...$500 for O2 sensors is WAY too much!
 
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