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2019 Forester Sport CVT
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Discussion Starter · #21 ·
Next project is installation of a class 3 two inch ecohitch by Torklift. It is one of the first hitches made for this car. It is heavy duty and made in the USA. Tows 3500 pounds with 350 lb tounge weight.
 

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Discussion Starter · #23 ·
EcoHitch from Torklift is one of the first available hitches for the 2019 Forester. This cost $385 with wiring harness. I have used Curt hitches in the past and these typically bolt to the frame. They cost less, but do not look as nice finished.

This hitch is designed to replace the rear bumper cross member. It will slide into two frame channels and bolt into place where the cross member was attached, plus two additional heavy duty bolts anchor the 8" inserts into the frame channels.

This hitch is very heavy and I am happy to have this beefy hitch replace the cross member for crash protection.

There is already a very good post from TurnKey about the installation instructions. The kit has a pretty good set of instructions too. So, I am not going to replace that already good discussion. Instead, I am going to focus on the details of my work in conjunction with some photos. You can see that thread from TurnKey here: https://www.subaruforester.org/vbul...stall-ecohitch-2-inch-diy-790981/#post7487407


As I have done in the past, each number will correspond to a photo to describe that picture and what was happening on this point of the install.

1. (Pic-5) Here is the hitch with instructions and hardware.

2. (Pic-7) Rear bumper before the hitch install.

3. (Pic-9) I removed the fasteners and started pulling back the plastic bumper cover. This came off very easily and clean. No fasteners were broken.

4. (Pic-11) On the Sport I have the RAB feature. There is one wire harness to disconnect before moving the plastic bumper skin off to the side. All the RAB sensors and such are tucked nicely into the bumper skin and do not interfere with any cutting or the hitch itself.

5. (Pic-13) The cross member is in place here. This is for crash protection and technically I would call this the rear bumper. The plastic skin just covers this area to make the car look nice. This is the business end.

6. (Pic-15) The cross member is out. What you see now is the channels into the frame section. Each side has 2 bolts and two nuts. The hitch assembly has two 8" inserts that slides into the channels. The bolts and nuts secure the hitch where the cross member was located and a large bolt will fit into the second hole on each channel.
7. (Pic-19) Here is a look inside the frame channel. I found this step in the instructions to be a little confusing. There are actually 3 holes in the bottom of the channel and three holes on the side of the channel. So, in my eager state I had all the grommet covers off as I was trying to figure out where to fish the bolt through. The instructions covered this, but the photo was not very easy to see and understand on this step. The bolt need to be fished into the second bottom hole from the rear of the car.

8. (Pic-21) The hitch is place and torqued. I checked the hole placement for the bolt that needs to be fished through and alignment was spot on. So, I torqued the other bolts and nuts.

9. (Pic-25) The hole in the hitch is much smaller than the channel. So, fishing the wire into the second channel hole from under the car and through the small opening in the hitch was hard. So, I used a long blade screwdriver to snatch the fish wire and pulled it through the hitch hole.

10. (Pic-26) THIS STEP IS VERY IMPORTANT. There are two sides to the star washer. A grippy side and a smooth side. Make sure the grippy side is facing the frame so it can grab the metal. I did insert a long 19mm wrench into the channel, to hold the bolt, but it was not the best method. It is hard to get the bolt torqued to spec because when you tighten the nut from under the car, the bolt inside the channel will want to spin. So, good luck! This step took me a little while to get right. If I removed the muffler completely, this would have been a lot easier.

11. (Pic-23) The bolt is in place.

12. (Pic-29) To make room for the bolt and hardware on the passenger side, the heat shield needs to be trimmed. Just cut out the M in the shield and it is perfect. I filed down the rough edges. The metal is thin aluminum and easy to trim.

13. (Pic-30) Bolt is torqued and heat shield is back in place with the M section cut out so the hardware fits.

14. (Pic-32) Just follow the instructions for marking up the bumper cutout section. As Turnkey stated, the tolerance is perfect. The fit is tight and just what you need. I made no adjustments to the instructions at all. The only point to make is that when you install the plastic bumper cover you need to make sure the cut out section is up high when you slide the bumper in. Otherwise the plastic likes to go in front of the chain holes instead of the correct position. I had to fiddle with this a few times. So, tolerance is perfect when you are lined up correctly. Having a helper here will pay off.

15. (Pic-33) The cut is done.

16. (Pic-36) Hitch is in place and the bumper cover is back on and snapped into position.

17. (Pic-38) Here is an undershot. The hitch sits 12" off the floor. The muffler is at 13.5 inches up and the rear differential is 10" off the floor. I have an order in for a rear diff skid plate, so more install photos coming.
 

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Discussion Starter · #24 ·
I have the winter wheels on right now. These are Drag 17" wheels with Bliztak tires. I purchased some Subaru caps and decals to replace the Drag caps. The Subaru caps did not fit the rim. I was not surprised, so my backup plan was to use badge decals to fit over the Drag logo which was embossed.

I pulled out the drum sander and went to work. The raised section and name were ground off. The cap has a slight roundness to it, but not as great as the badge decal. So, I used some 3M outdoor (red) double sided sticky tape in the middle section to prevent the decal from buckling inward and popping off the flatter cap.

Here is the work:

1. (Pic-2) Drag Wheel with dual bolt pattern 5x100 (fit my 09 Forester) and 5x114.5 (fits the 2019 Forester)

2. (Pic-1) Close up of Drag cap.

3. (Pic-3) Raised sections of the cap has been grinded flat then smooth with 3M scotch brite.

4. (Pic-6) Three caps ready for tape and badge decal.

5. (Pic-7) Three decals mounted and ready to go.

6. (Pic-5) Close up of the wheel.

7. (Pic-8) Car shot.
 

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Discussion Starter · #26 ·
Bummer. I think you will like this set better. Will update when the dead peadals arrive. I do really like teh crew-on style. I had a set for 9 years on my 09 Forester and they never failed, never moved. Still work as well as teh day I installed them.
 

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Great documentation and pics !
Quick question on the strut tower brace, I'm assuming it''s E4010SJ000.....where did you find it for $200? I can only find it for around $350 with free shipping......or did you grab one from a previous year?
Did you look into a solid brace like the one on ebay?
 

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2019 Forester Sport Rubber band
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I think it would be really hard to do this. You can replace some of the trim panelling and blacken the exterior, but I do not think it would look good up close if you blacken it. There is no way to replace all of the orange stictching in the seats.

I think it is best to live with it, or buy a Limited or Touring option with many of the same features as the Sport.

This vendor on ebay has some high quality stuff and lots of the trim panel replacements in boring silver.

https://www.ebay.com/sch/m.html?_od...2.A0.H0.Xforester.TRS0&_nkw=forester&_sacat=0
Great link. For those allergic to orange trim they can make it disappear,
 

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Sdcerreta

Definitely a nice setup. I was a HAT guy prior to my Foz, having the Clarus line. The only reason I didn't install my Clarus comps in the front was that it required cutting. My installer and myself didn't want to risk cutting anything in my 18 Foz, especially as I wasn't going full out custom.

I'm kind of surprised you went with the Type S Sub to match with the HAT Unity speakers. My past experiences with both lines makes me feel like HAT is on another level than Alpine nowadays. How do you like the speakers so far? How do they perform with the Alpine Sub?

I'm really feeling the custom fiberglass enclosure! I wanted something like that but stuck with my two 8" subs in the spare wheel well.
 

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Discussion Starter · #31 ·
Great documentation and pics !
Quick question on the strut tower brace, I'm assuming it''s E4010SJ000.....where did you find it for $200? I can only find it for around $350 with free shipping......or did you grab one from a previous year?
Did you look into a solid brace like the one on ebay?
I bought it new with the car at the dealership. I dont know what I paid and cant find the details. You may be right. It might have been 400.
 

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Discussion Starter · #32 ·
I love Alpine subs. They have always served me well. I only have the U3 dash speakers installed. The rest of the gear will go in next Tuesday. I will post back when ready.

Yup, been a busy little bee.:thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter · #35 ·
I really want that hood. Nice find!

I am likely going to do a 2" lift with those BF Goodrich tires next winter when I need new tires. I really like the look of that lift and tire package. I'm sold!

I ordered a new exhaust, axle back and it is on the way. I also have some new Rally Sport mud flaps and Primitive Racing mid and rear diff skid plates. I did not have time to install them, so will likely do all this next weekend. I shoudl have the car back from teh audio shop by then too.

This weekend, must ski Telluride. Crowds are smaller than the xmas break and fresh pow coming tonight. Exciting.
 

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I really want that hood. Nice find!

I am likely going to do a 2" lift with those BF Goodrich tires next winter when I need new tires. I really like the look of that lift and tire package. I'm sold!

I ordered a new exhaust, axle back and it is on the way. I also have some new Rally Sport mud flaps and Primitive Racing mid and rear diff skid plates. I did not have time to install them, so will likely do all this next weekend. I shoudl have the car back from teh audio shop by then too.

This weekend, must ski Telluride. Crowds are smaller than the xmas break and fresh pow coming tonight. Exciting.
Where are you finding all your stuff? I have a sport also, but having a hard time finding parts. Could you post links? only place i've found that has underbody armor is LP.
 

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Discussion Starter · #38 ·
Where are you finding all your stuff? I have a sport also, but having a hard time finding parts. Could you post links? only place i've found that has underbody armor is LP.

It's a secret. If I tell your Forester will look better than mine. >:)

Haha.

The hitch is from torklift. Called the Ecohitch. I do love it. Solid and reasonable price for this qulity. https://***************.com/trailer...-hitches/ecohitch/subaru/2019-subaru-forester

LP Adventure does have a lift kit, rear diff cover and the Lechute performance exhaust. https://lpaventure.com/collections/forester-2019

The mid and rear skid plates and rally sport mudflats came from Primitve Racing. This shop is CA based and ships faster than LP. They are rally racing specialists. They have similar products to LP, but much less expensive. They do not have a lift kit or front skid plate yet. They said the lift kit will be available in a few months. They are still designing it. Price will be about the same as LP, but comes with King springs. So, big upgrade for this price. LP does not include springs. https://***************.com/trailer...-hitches/ecohitch/subaru/2019-subaru-forester

Most of the other gear is from Subaru, including the front aluminum skid plate. I have bought from a few different dealers, but moving forward will be shopping at Huerburgers in CO.

Let me know if I missed anything.
 

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@Sdcerreta, Good stuff. Did you install the Moonroof air deflector for looks or was the spring loaded net not cutting it? My Sport is still in transit. I've got the mod bug but everything really cool is ROW/Japan only. I went through this with all my OB's. More desire than money. :) So far I splurged for an orange steering wheel emblem. Keep the pics coming.
 

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Discussion Starter · #40 ·
Peja, the answer is complicated.

I did not have a sunroof in my 09 Forester. But, when I carried a ski rack on the roof, I would get a whistling noise that drove me crazy. There was less of a noise when I had the skis on the rack. Itried installing a couple different kinds of air deflectors and these seemed to generate their own loeve of noise or friction rubbing sounds. So, the real reason I bought the sunroof deflector was to try and minimize the noise I get when the ski rack is mounted.

I have carried skis a few times now, including a long trip to Telluride which I just got back from. This deflector works great! I get no whistlign noise at all with skis on or off.

I never really evaluated the effect of the mesh net so I cannot comment on that. I do notice that with the deflector on, air pretty much travels over the sunroof opening and not blastig into the car. But, then again I did not really have much time to use it without the deflector and it has been so cold that I have not had the sunroof open very much at all.
 
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