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#4551863 - 10/23/17 11:13 AM Stage 3 wrx oil recommendations
02s4audi Offline


Registered: 03/27/15
Posts: 339
Loc: New York
I know it's been debated through and through. I have a stage 3 wrx with a "built" motor. I'm currently running m1 0w40 and it's time for an oil change. I'm noticing some recent valve train noise that wasn't there before. Wondering if the m1 is thinning out and causing some noise? I have about 3k on the oil. I'm thinking of switching to rotella as most say it's good for subarus and it runs quieter than m1? What do you guys think?

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#4551883 - 10/23/17 11:28 AM Re: Stage 3 wrx oil recommendations [Re: 02s4audi]
skyactiv Offline


Registered: 03/02/13
Posts: 4407
Loc: The Midwest
People just like to repeat what they hear and assume its the best choice. The General RT43 as an example. When the first person that comes in saying to use Rotella T 5W40, your going to use it regardless of what I say. Me? Use an oil that meets the Porsche A40 spec. Your Mobil1 0W40 does I think, but since you wanna switch to something else, try Pennzoil Platinum Euro 5W40. Shell Rotella and Pennzoil is owned by the same company. Use the full saps oil meant for a gas engine.
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#4551924 - 10/23/17 12:06 PM Re: Stage 3 wrx oil recommendations [Re: 02s4audi]
gathermewool Offline


Registered: 01/09/09
Posts: 6003
What kind of noise and where is it coming from? Which filter are you running?

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#4551930 - 10/23/17 12:14 PM Re: Stage 3 wrx oil recommendations [Re: 02s4audi]
02s4audi Offline


Registered: 03/27/15
Posts: 339
Loc: New York
It's a ticking noise that wasn't there before and subaru oem blue

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#4551939 - 10/23/17 12:27 PM Re: Stage 3 wrx oil recommendations [Re: 02s4audi]
Rand Offline


Registered: 08/20/03
Posts: 12653
Loc: NE,Ohio
not enough info.. how built is the engine.. what did the builder recommend.

What oil temps are you seeing. etc.

Is the noise on startup, or right before shutting down..
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#4551941 - 10/23/17 12:30 PM Re: Stage 3 wrx oil recommendations [Re: 02s4audi]
02s4audi Offline


Registered: 03/27/15
Posts: 339
Loc: New York
Noise is while running. Engine was built before I got it. It's just rods, pistons, ported head. Not really a built motor but upgraded I guess. No idea on oil temps as I have no way to monitor. This noise hasn't been here. Just started hearing it recently. I first noticed on Friday

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#4552006 - 10/23/17 01:46 PM Re: Stage 3 wrx oil recommendations [Re: 02s4audi]
Planb Offline


Registered: 01/30/12
Posts: 78
Loc: Ontario, Canada
Noise? Like rod knock?

Use whatever xw40 that is on sale...

But, cut the filter and look for metal. My bet is that you will find some.
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#4552046 - 10/23/17 02:32 PM Re: Stage 3 wrx oil recommendations [Re: 02s4audi]
gathermewool Offline


Registered: 01/09/09
Posts: 6003
How are you tuned and are you able to data-log. I think your motor and tune are way more important than the oil. No oil is going to save you engine if it's tuned poorly.

What do you mean by "stage 3" anyway - Beyond Stage 2 (down-pipe and a tune) it gets very vague - typically bigger inter-cooler, intake and other small bits, like possibly a new bypass valve, boost control solenoid, etc. In other words, you can't just tune the ECM to be stage 3, nor is it just a rebuilt motor and ported heads.

Finally, the ticking could very well be an exhaust header leak. I had this on my '08 STI after the dealer messed with the turbo and replacing the gasket fixed the issue. My '97 Legacy GT had a tick that seemed to come from beneath the engine, but it wasn't loud, never got worse, and wasn't worth the effort to remove due to rust and corrosion.

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#4552051 - 10/23/17 02:36 PM Re: Stage 3 wrx oil recommendations [Re: 02s4audi]
KL31 Offline


Registered: 06/03/16
Posts: 549
Loc: South OZ
Stick with 40 grade but try Castrol Edge and see if things quieten down. Mobil seems to have many noise complaints on these forums.
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#4552064 - 10/23/17 02:49 PM Re: Stage 3 wrx oil recommendations [Re: gathermewool]
02s4audi Offline


Registered: 03/27/15
Posts: 339
Loc: New York
Originally Posted By: gathermewool
How are you tuned and are you able to data-log. I think your motor and tune are way more important than the oil. No oil is going to save you engine if it's tuned poorly.

What do you mean by "stage 3" anyway - Beyond Stage 2 (down-pipe and a tune) it gets very vague - typically bigger inter-cooler, intake and other small bits, like possibly a new bypass valve, boost control solenoid, etc. In other words, you can't just tune the ECM to be stage 3, nor is it just a rebuilt motor and ported heads.

Finally, the ticking could very well be an exhaust header leak. I had this on my '08 STI after the dealer messed with the turbo and replacing the gasket fixed the issue. My '97 Legacy GT had a tick that seemed to come from beneath the engine, but it wasn't loud, never got worse, and wasn't worth the effort to remove due to rust and corrosion.

By stage 3 I mean vf39 turbo, injectors, full exhaust, up oipe, intake, intercooler. Car is tuned for the mods. The turbo and injectors were put in about a month ago with new exhaust gaskets and such. No issues until now it's top end valve train ticking/clattering. No rod knock. It's a noise that hasn't been there before. And just recently developed. Motor has 8k on it since it was rebuilt. The noise comes from the engine. I can't hear it with the windows uo, Windows down it bounces off objects on each side of the car. It's not a bad sound, it's just more noisy than it ever has been. It's just been absolutely silent until now

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#4552104 - 10/23/17 03:29 PM Re: Stage 3 wrx oil recommendations [Re: 02s4audi]
gathermewool Offline


Registered: 01/09/09
Posts: 6003
Sounds like it might be the injectors. I remember thinking my previous WRX and STI injectors (stock) were very loud, and that it sounded more like a DI vehicle than MPI.

Were you tuned 8k miles ago for the bigger turbo and injectors. I'm sorry for asking obvious questions, but there are plenty of people who think bolting things on is all there is to performance mods; I'm sure you're not that kind of guy.

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#4552210 - 10/23/17 05:22 PM Re: Stage 3 wrx oil recommendations [Re: 02s4audi]
02s4audi Offline


Registered: 03/27/15
Posts: 339
Loc: New York
Bought the car stage 2 with 4k on motor. Upgraded the injectors and turbo and had it tuned at 6k. Its been quiet until now

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#4552424 - 10/23/17 08:37 PM Re: Stage 3 wrx oil recommendations [Re: 02s4audi]
Charlie2015 Offline


Registered: 04/24/15
Posts: 243
Loc: Georgia
Redline 15w50
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#4553231 - 10/24/17 03:49 PM Re: Stage 3 wrx oil recommendations [Re: 02s4audi]
gathermewool Offline


Registered: 01/09/09
Posts: 6003
My best recommendation, to see if you can pinpoint the source, is to buy a mechanic's stethoscope and probe around (carefully). I'm not there to hear it, but it's quite possible you've simply not paid attention to the injector noise until now. I didn't notice it in my previous Subies until driving down one stretch of road that reflected engine noise into the cabin surprisingly loudly. I was new to turbo Subies and the noise concerned me.

If you're certain that it's not anything benign, then try replacing the filter to see if it quiets things down a bit. If that doesn't work, then trying another, stouter oil might be in line.

Have you over-revved, run the engine low on oil or done any crazy parking-lot drifting/AWD donuts that could cause a momentary lack of sufficient lubrication, resulting in damage?

Finally, do you know who built the engine? Maybe give them a ring and see what they recommend.

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#4554017 - 10/25/17 10:27 AM Re: Stage 3 wrx oil recommendations [Re: 02s4audi]
gathermewool Offline


Registered: 01/09/09
Posts: 6003
Also, if you're not data logging then you need to figure out how to do that. A modified, tuned motor needs to be monitored every so often, at the very least for knock and fuel trim abnormalities.

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