Subaru Secondary Air Pump Delete

Author: Julius Bloem  Date Posted:26 January 2020 

How to get rid of your Subaru's Secondary Air Pump Having trouble with your Subaru’s Air Pump? You’re not alone, it’s one of the most common problems we see on 2005+ Subarus. You may also want to de-clutter your engine bay and removing the air pump system will make your engine easier to work on.

How to get rid of your Subaru's Secondary Air Pump

Having trouble with your Subaru’s Air Pump? You’re not alone, it’s one of the most common problems we see on 2005+ Subarus. You may also want to de-clutter your engine bay and removing the air pump system will make your engine easier to work on and provide a cleaner look.

Subaru Air pump on a 2019 WRX STI

The air pump component of the secondary air pump system in a 2020 WRX STI.

 

Is there a simple fix? 

There certainly is. This article includes all the details you need to know about the Subaru Air Pump system, but if you just want to know what the fixes are, scroll right to the bottom.

 

What are the symptoms?

The first and often only symptom you will notice is the check engine light illuminated on your dashboard. This is an indication that the Engine Control Unit (ECU) has detected an issue within the electronic engine components that it monitors. To diagnose what the detected fault is, you will need to have your ECU scanned, usually by a professional workshop or by using a DIY scan tool. The next section has a list of Air Pump Fault codes and their meaning.

When the check engine light is illuminated, the ECU runs in a 'limp home' or safe mode which may cause the following symptoms:

  • Lack of power
  • Unable to select Sports Sharp (S#) mode on SI-drive equipped vehicles
  • Excessive fuel consumption

Other less typical symptoms you may experience with a failing secondary air pump may include:

  • Grinding or whining noise from the air pump
  • High pitched sucking or blowing noise from the air pump piping
  • Erratic vehicle power after initial start-up.

Air Pump Fault codes

There are a range of fault codes that indicate an issue with your secondary air pump system. The fault code and the fault meanings are listed below:

  • P0410 – Secondary Air Pump System 
  • P0413 – Secondary Air Pump A Open 
  • P0414 – Secondary Air Pump A Shorted
  • P0418 – Secondary Air Pump Relay A
  • P2432 – Secondary Air Pump Circuit Low
  • P2433 – Secondary Air Pump Circuit High
  • P2441 – Secondary Air Pump Valve 1 Stuck Closed
  • P2444 – Secondary Air Pump 1 Stuck on B1

 

What does an air pump even do?

A secondary air pump system has the sole purpose of improving exhaust gas emissions during cold start.

When an engine is cold, the catalytic converter in the exhaust system is unable to efficiently work to reduce engine emissions. To meet strict regulations, manufactures devised an air pump system, which injects air into the engine's exhaust ports. This additional air helps to oxidise and burn off the pollutants in the exhaust gas until the catalytic converter is hot enough to take over. 

In most cases, the air pump system is only active for around 1 minute after starting the vehicle from dead cold. 

 

Can I live without it?

Your car can work perfectly fine if it is disabled correctly.

The main negative you will encounter is the increased exhaust emissions. This is not generally something you will notice, however, the pollution rate from your engine will be slightly increased for around a minute upon each cold start. 

No Subaru vehicle pre-2005 has this system, so the emissions will be similar to a Subaru older than this age.

If you have modified your vehicle for performance and removed the catalytic converter, the emission benefit of an air pump will be negligible. 

The engine bay of a 2020 WRX STI has a busy engine bay. Removal of the air pump can help to give a cleaner look and trouble-free motoring.

The engine bay of a modified 2014 WRX STI that has had the air pump removed, giving a cleaner look.

What are my options and the costs to delete a Subaru Secondary Air Pump?

There are a range of options to disable the air pump system within the Engine Control Unit (ECU), turn off the associated fault codes as well as removing the associated pumps, hoses, lines and valves that actuate and control the airflow. These options are listed below:

Basic Delete - $195 inc GST

  • Reprogram Engine Control Unit (ECU) to disable the air pump system
  • Reprogram Engine Control Unit (ECU) to disable the fault codes relating to the air pump system
  • This option leaves all mechanical and electronic components within the engine compartment, maintaining the original engine appearance.

Standard Delete - $295 inc GST

  • Reprogram Engine Control Unit (ECU) to disable the air pump system
  • Reprogram Engine Control Unit (ECU) to disable the fault codes relating to the air pump system
  • Removal of the air pump and associated bracketry
  • Removal of the air pump hose around the LH cylinder head
  • Supply and installation of blanking plug to be placed in air pump hoses at rear of engine
  • This option removed the most obvious air pump components from the engine bay, providing a cleaner appearance and reducing the difficulty and time required to change the LH spark plugs. 

Standard Delete & PBMS Tune package (Recommended) - $1549 inc GST

  • All steps from the above Standard Delete
  • PBMS Tune package using the 9 Step tuning process
  • We recommend performing a tune when deleting an Air Pump System to compensate for any differences in the engine's operation caused by these alterations. As a positive side effect, you will make significant performance gains and have a vehicle that drives smoother and runs better. 
  • Note pricing may vary if ECUTEK or ECUTEK RACEROM is used to tune your vehicle.

Complete Delete - Price on application

  • Reprogram Engine Control Unit (ECU) to disable the air pump system
  • Reprogram Engine Control Unit (ECU) to disable the fault codes relating to the air pump system
  • Removal of the air pump and associated bracketry
  • Removal of the air pump hose around the LH cylinder head
  • Remove valves, hoses and pipes on top and behind the engine, including those feeding the in cylinder head
  • Installation of PBMS Air Pump Blanking plates on the rear of each cylinder head
  • This option completely removes all componentry related to the air pump system to the cleanest appearance. This requires significant additional labour so is usually completed in conjunction with an engine build. 

Contact to book your air pump delete 


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