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Top 5 Mods for Your Turbo Subaru

Top 5 Mods for Your Turbo Subaru

So you’re now a part of the worldwide Subaru Community. You wave to other WRX and turbocharged Subaru owners on the road. And you can’t wait to start modifying your car.

But where should you start?

There’s an endless amount of aftermarket support for these cars, so choosing what mods to perform can be tough if you’re new to the Subaru platform. After owning five Subarus in my life (two Legacy GTs, two STIs and one Bugeye WRX), here are my top five mods for your turbo Subaru (WRX, STI, Legacy GT and Forester & Outback XT).

1. Tune, tune, tune!

A proper tune specific to your car, engine and modifications is essential to the health and performance of your Subaru. If you are new to the game, you have to know these cars need to be tuned for just about every modification you make to the engine. If the modification alters the way the engine uses air or fuel, plan on having the car tuned. A good route to go on is to choose all the modifications you want, do them all at once and then have the car tuned. That way you don’t have to go in for a re-tune after adding another piece to your puzzle.

Always go to a reputable tuner! Having your cousin Tim tune your car on his laptop for the first time is a recipe for disaster.

2. Upgrade the Exhaust

It’s time to unleash the Subie rumble!

Increasing airflow through the exhaust with a new downpipe and catback will give it that little pep in its step you want. There are plenty of brands and styles to choose from that all create a unique sound. Bellmouth versus divorced downpipes is a whole other discussion, but for the most part you won’t notice the difference. Look up different combos on YouTube to try and find the sound you like. Note that going completely cat-less could lead to over-boost, and no one wants that. I like to find used pieces from other members of the Subaru community to save money.

Don’t forget – you get what you pay for. And be mindful of your state-specific emissions regulations.

3. Wheels and Tires

Now that your car is tuned properly and sounds great, it’s time to start looking the part.

Check the Internet for different wheel and tire combos you like for your car. There are plenty of wheel threads on forums like or that offer examples of styles and sizes to help you pick. Familiarize yourself with proper wheel size and fitment and find the right width and offset that fits the style you’re looking for, whether you want a super-functional look or you’re a stance driver who has a sick vape rig.

Again, sourcing a set of used wheels and tires can save you a big chunk of change. Oh, and please don’t refer to “wheels” as “rims.” Wheels are wheels, tires are tires and rims are technically the outer part of the wheel, unless you have 24? chrome wheels from Xzibit.

4. Modify the Suspension

Yes, this is a pretty generic mod. But specifically I’m referring to coilovers, a spring-and-strut combo or bags, if you’re a baller. You can’t have sweet-looking wheels, yet drive around with a huge fender gap, like a monster truck. We Subie owners will not allow it.

If your budget is low, look at a quality lowering spring, but know that you WILL need new struts eventually if you continue to use the original equipment manufacturer (OEM) struts. If you have more money to spend, investing in a good set of coilovers is always a great option. There are great coils out there for around $1,000, and I think they’re worth every penny. Your car will look, ride and perform great – everything you ever wanted!

Now, if you’re a baller and have at least $3,000 to drop on suspension, air bags are pretty slick, too. Ride on a cushion of air and then drop it like it’s hot with the push of a button. Several people have proven they perform just as well as coilovers, too.

5. Air Oil Separator – Catch Can

What is an air oil separator (AOS)? Well, it works just like it sounds – it separates the oil from the air entering your engine to cut down on oil consumption and help eliminate detonation. Basically, like your air filter cleans debris from the air, an air oil separator cleans oil from the air.

Why is this important? In the Boxer Subaru engines, high g-forces push oil to the end of the piston, making Subarus more prone to burn oil. Burning oil can cause detonation, which leads to blown piston ring lands and a hefty repair bill. An AOS decreases blow-by (oil sneaking through the turbo) and helps eliminate oil entering the engine. Think of it like an insurance policy for your Boxer engine.

Everyone has their own version of this Top 5 list. It’s your car, so do what you want. Remember that you get what you pay for. And research before you buy – there’s plenty of information on the forums.

Sioux Falls’s AMSOIL gets a LOT of subaru owners not just for our oil but for the oil filter. The stock one you can crush with your hand. Our nanofiber one has three times the capacity in the same can.

We also have those ball caps with the flat bill so you can fit better with the Subaru groups here.

The 3000 Mile Oil Drain Fails To Address The Real Issue

The 3000 Miles Oil Change Interval Doesn’t Address Oil Quality

When people say to me they change their oil at 3000 so not to take any chances that dirt could be causing damage or the oil could be getting “bad”, I say to them, why not change every 50 miles then?? I’m sure the oil is still good but as you said, why take a chance?

Let’s look at the top reasons for engine failure which relate to the oil.

#1 is lack of lubrication. Nothing to do with dirt but a poor quality non-synthetic even low quality synthetic made from Group III base stocks (There are over 80 different quality levels for a Group III oil thus lower prices – this does not fit the scientific definition of synthetic) can and will leave deposits OR lose viscosity early on both causing lack of lubrication.
#2 – Overheating – Often the damage done after a engine overheats is caused by the heat being too intense for the oil to hold its properties. An AMSOIL product would have prevented this especially in air cooled (V-Twin bikes or marine) and in the new trend of turbocharged engines. The coming LSPI issue will demand the oil be at least a 100% synthetic quality. It’s designed for temperatures beyond these issues.
So changing oil every day will not prevent the above. Any overheating event or the list of reasons which cause a lack of lubrication cannot be addressed by the 3000 mile oil change. Only by the quality of the oil. AMSOIL also adds performance and for the difference in price per quart is less than the cost of a cup of today’s coffee so the solution for protecting your investment is here!! And has been for 45 years.

Quality Oil Filtration is a Must but still only part of the issue

I couldn’t find the study as I was writing this but Federal Mogul published research that “dirt” in oil was actually a minor part of failure while things relating to lubricant quality were. Acids or loss of TBN was a much more severe issue. Corrosion and storage was a far greater contributor to reduction in engine efficiency and ultimately failure.

Mild quality oil filters solve the dirt issue for up to 10,000 miles but you still need an oil which can fight contaminants caused by fuel or advanced wear over the years (such as starting with a used vehicle which you don’t know the history of). AMSOIL addresses the contaminants with their advanced additive packages and are willing to cover that with a guarantee.

How do you know?

Note while that AMSOIL does back their oil for longer intervals, this is clearly stated for engines which are in normal operating condition and have not been modified. For modified engines, neglected ones or those with a good number of miles over 100,000 they do list severe service categories or one can always get our KIT-02 oil analysis kit and go from there.

Just use better oil and find out what you are missing!

AMSOIL use will tilt the scales of a nations fleet replacement statistics. Imagine that. Just from changing brands of oil.

The 3000 mile oil change interval excuse is much like arguing one brand of cigarettes is more healthy than another.
Use AMSOIL and unlock the full potential of your drive train!! Find out what others already know – AMSOIL is all about performance!
Ches Cain – AMSOIL Direct Jobber

Sioux Falls AMSOIL Store Video

I thought I would make a quick video of the Sioux Falls AMSOIL location.

I also wanted to thank all our customers especially all the new ones that keep showing up. Last year we saw a good increase in sales but so far this year two out of three are totally new customers who were either referred by a friend (First time AMSOIL customer) or a long time user of AMSOIL who quit because of the lack of supply.


We wanted to turn that opinion around and not only provide for a good supply during normal business hours but make AMSOIL a household name allowing the products to become stocked in every shop and repair center in the area. That is our primary goal – AMSOIL everywhere!
Why not? It benefits all drivers and equipment owners no matter the budget or age of equipment.

Also if you are an entrepreneur and want to earn a 2nd income stock AMSOIL in your garage and fill the gap on the other side of town. That also increases the service you can provide to area businesses who stock or service vehicles with AMSOIL not limited to commercial fleets. Our store then serves as your warehouse. I have had to double the initial inventories just to keep up with surprises so I’m sure we can keep you covered.

Another thing I’m seeing is the increase of awareness by over the road trucking. Thanks to AMSOIL’s increase in national advertising we are seeing people stop in the store from Oregon, Idaho, Canada, Colorado and North Carolina just passing through on I-80 but they see our listings and drop in to get oil. Sioux Falls and our location may be the easiest off of any major interstate highway in the country to get product. The cool thing with truckers is they know which oil they need already but the store causes them to just want to stock up to eliminate any shipping costs and hassles. They never know when they will be somewhere long enough to receive an order. Because of this you have to keep on hand 5-gallon tubs of gear oil and a minimum of five of the 5-gallon diesel packs in every viscosity and type.

In summary the Sioux Falls AMSOIL store is planing ahead to be the main stop for all of those who are Do I Yourselfers and those who want to take their oil somewhere to be changed. We also have programs in place for those who do oil changes to stock our products and AMSOIL Corporate will also list your service on their website.

Oh – We just aligned with a Mobile Oil Change business called Lube N Go.  They immediately recognized the value and quality AMSOIL offers to busy Sioux Falls commuters who want to know the oil in their cars is held to the highest standards. Many choices available with their business so we are glad to have them aboard!

Ches Cain
Synthetic Warehouse
4610 W. 12th St.
Sioux Falls, SD 68137

Ordering after hours or out of state use our website:

Sioux Falls store video Transcript  (Don’t expect this to make a lot of sense without watching the video.

Video Transcript


Welcome – right now we are in the Sioux Falls synthetic warehouse our Sioux Falls AMSOIL location and location start to really pick up speed we get customers every day saying that they stopped buying AMSOIL and now that they’ve found a place that keeps everything in stock they’re coming in

We hear that every day.

Every day in our store to get accounts. People that didn’t know they can keep AMSOIL in their shops they’re coming in from mostly outside the area like a 50 mile radius outside the area so it’s taken about a year of the shop being here.


There’s our checkout counter & feature items. We’ve got all the chemical stuff up by the window – there’s some clearance sale items as we got the new stuff coming in. Um, ATV UTV products on the bottom. Over here we have all the transmission you could see here all the transmission gear products the cold air intake filters which are quite popular if you have them people do notice that discuss the K&N’s or the other ones that don’t stop dirt.

Just a display of the greases. Of course the whole range of oil filters and then back over here in the corner we have the power sports island here got the backup all of our motorcycle oils quick shot of course I must do something with this shelf – must expand it a bit.


Things for the summer right now the Saber Pro has really stepped up I started doing some blogging and putting this in precedence an now we’re starting to get lawn & garden type of business is coming in. This winter we did have a lot of snowmobile traffic so imagine this summer will pick up on the jet ski stuff I got all the marine products back here that’s been slow to pick up but we’re starting to move some of that. More backup supplies.

I got some Aggrand there.

I sell these Berkey filters -nobody else keeps them in town and just some various displays here we’re going to expand this more.

Got all the dirt bike oils on this table and they’re starting to pick up the new transmission fluid and the new 10W-40 here (their backup supply.)


Bypass filter display. This is our diesel rack we got the coolant we got every Bypass kit here I got extra hose and other parts in another spot. I have hats here but everybody wants a free hat – you get a case we’ll give you one!

We start here with the signature series and we go down to the all the classic car and hi-zinc, specialty products here so there’s a lot of quarts gallons, court cases and in other cases down here. Gallons are in the middle of course the European oil with its own area & OE that’s starting to pick up and then our best seller is the XL – we move quite a bit of XL lately so there’s that.


Then the diesel oil’s up too. All this stuff takes time, guerrilla marketing tactic that gets the word out without having to have expensive radio commercials and TV but starting to get a lot of mouth that way now.


So you see we’ve got everything here diesel fuel additives they just recently this winter started picking up a lot of the cold flow stuff the cetane boost that’s probably the best bargain for the money and the whole story that’s free money if you had a diesel truck and you’re not using this. You spend 20 bucks it’s like getting 25 back so we have that.


Back up supply for the whole store goes down here we got the whole line of the racing oil.

I have compressor oils that’s a staple item here in the store

GL4 – we move a lot of that by the way (75W-90 trans). Let me stand back you can see the grease display. So we have things that hang out on top –  these didn’t sell until we started getting them out where people could see them and then they sell regularly.


As a dealer you want to specify the bestseller multi-purpose grease high speed high pressure so we got universal multi-purpose Greases water-resistant best for trailers and equipment exposed to water I got the Arctic grease here and then behind this sign polymeric Grease best for heavy-duty use off-road most advanced Greece in the industry best for open bearings and hinge pins excavating equipment so people can walk in they can quickly find with any of course we ran out of room here we got the racing grease here racing grease combines all attributes of other grease high speed high temp extreme pressure and water resistance so a lot of people are confused they want a little bit of everything the racing grease has you covered course there’s a higher cost with that.


So you can save money by just.. I tell people to get two grease guns as the heavy duty and your big grease gun and then buy one of these small ones in use the water resistant for everything else or hand packing bearings or whatever here’s the Slip Lock and assembly lube over here – So that’s just a quick overview.


I have a storage room we keep our back-up supply but come on in any time where in Sioux Falls at 4211 South 12th Street or 84 and G open every day but Sunday! Thanks for taking the tour!