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Scion FR-S / Subaru BRZ Oil Cooler Installation Guide

Erik Blume  June 12 2014

Today we show you how to correctly install an FR-S / FT86 / BRZ oil cooler on your FA20 powered Scion, Subaru, or Toyota!

In just a few hours work, you'll be able to install this FR-S / BRZ oil cooler with tools found in most backyard mechanics toolboxes. The MAPerformance FR-S/BRZ Oil cooler kit comes with everything you need right out of the box, so lets get started! [caption id="attachment_855" align="aligncenter" width="600"]brz oil cooler Click here to get your Scion FR-S / Subaru BRZ Oil Cooler[/caption] First things first, make sure the engine is cool so you don't burn yourself on either the oil or exhaust components. Since we'll be working under the car in some instances, you run the risk of touching hot engine parts. Wait at least 15 minutes after running the car to be safe. Once it's cooled, lift the front end of the car. We had a lift here at the shop, so we used that. [caption id="attachment_814" align="alignnone" width="800"]FR-S Turbo Under the knife: A turbocharged 2013 FR-S getting the MAPerformance FR-S / BRZ oil cooler.[/caption] Next, we're going to remove the front bumper. There are a total of 18 body clips and seven 10mm bolts holding the bumper to the car. Start with the body clips located within the wheel wells. There should be four on each side for a total of eight. Next, move to the eight clips under the bumper (facing the ground), then pop the hood and remove the two clips up top. It really helps having a body clip removal tool and prying gently under the clip and slowly unscrewing. Whatever method works best for you is okay. Set these aside in a tray or cup so you don't lose them. [gallery columns="4" ids="815,816,817,818"] Remove the turn signals from the bumper and set them aside. Push back the bulb harness as they will interfere with the removal of the bumper. You'll notice another body clip behind the turn signals on each side, remove these. Once you have the clips out and sitting aside, begin removing the 10mm bolts. There are two bolts under the bumper facing the ground, and five bolts under the hood. The bumper should be free now, so carefully remove it. Slowly pull it away from the car, checking for clearance issues. If all is free, set it aside. [gallery ids="819,820,822,823,824"] With the bumper off, you can see the core support, crash bar, lower air-dam, and some under-paneling. We don't need to touch the core support or crash bar on this turbocharged FR-S, but we're going to need to remove the air-dam and under-panel. There are six body clips attaching the air dam to the under-paneling, as well as three 10mm bolts which attach to the car. Once you have the under-panel off, you'll find three more 10mm bolts on the air-dam. Remove these and the dam will come off. Set it on your work bench, as we will attach the FR-S / BRZ Oil Cooler to this. [gallery ids="826,827,828"] With the air-dam off, mark the center of the panel (see picture) with a marker or scribe. Use a tape measure to find the center of the cooler and mark it. Visually line up the two marks you've made along the front edge of panel as we show in the picture. On the panel, put a mark where the cooler mounting tab holes are to be drilled. Set the cooler aside and drill the four 1/4" holes. [gallery columns="4" ids="832,833,834,835"] Now that you have your holes drilled out, use the supplied hardware to fasten the FR-S / BRZ oil cooler to the air-dam. Using a bolt and washer, insert through the panel. Find a spacer and set on bolt, then place the cooler on the panel. Fasten the oil cooler with another supplied washer and bolt. Repeat for the remaining holes. Use a 10mm box end wrench and ratchet to tighten the hardware in place. [gallery columns="5" ids="841,840,839,838,837"] With the cooler in place, you may begin attaching the stainless steel braided hose to the FA20 oil cooler. These will come pre-assembled and cut, so you wont have to worry about trimming those up. When you tighten the hose fittings, make sure you run the hoses facing to the left of the vehicle (drivers side) as the hoses will run up through the engine bay behind the headlight. Re-install the air-dam with the oil cooler attached, carefully running the hoses through into the FR-S / BRZ engine bay. [gallery columns="4" ids="844,843,842,862"] With the air-dam and under-paneling back on the car with the FR-S /  BRZ Oil Cooler installed and ready to go, lower the vehicle so you can remove the oil filter to install the thermostatically controlled sandwich plate. The car should be cool, so the filter should be drained of most oil. Remove the filter and either set it aside or discard it if changing the oil. [gallery columns="4" ids="852,850,849,848"] Start by cleaning the mating surface of the oil filter housing to remove any contaminants that would prevent a good seal. Assemble your sandwich plate by screwing on the adapter fittings. Put oil on the gaskets of the spacer and sandwich plate to allow for a good seal, and place the spacer on the filter housing. Place the sandwich on top of the spacer, gasket side down. Attach the sandwich and spacer to the filter housing using the supplied feed tube. It is a 1-1/16" or 27mm. A thin-walled socket is best for tightening it down. [gallery columns="4" ids="846,847,845,853"] Attach your hoses and tighten them down. No need to put too much force into them, they will seal just fine. Re-install your front bumper and attach the press in zip-tie to the hole shown above. For turbocharged applications and vehicles using a larger oil pan, fill to capacity. Start the car and allow it to warm up to operating temperature to ensure that oil is flowing through the system, including the cooler. Fill until it reaches the full mark on the dipstick tube. Repeat until the dipstick reads slightly over full when the engine is cold. Total capacity should be around 9qts on cars utilizing the MAPerformance large capacity oil pan, or around 7.5qts on cars with a stock FA20 oil pan. Check for leaks. If all is good, you have nothing to worry about!

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