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Subaru Legacy/Outback



  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Your engine IS HOT under the hood. It is about 175-200 degrees. So I'm not sure why you are suprised that it's HOT!

    As for reliability?

    I have a 1994 Legacy Turbo w/150k original miles on it, the last 25k miles have been on track being pushed to it's limit at or near redline the whole time. Routine maintenance is all we've done....

    Motorsports and Modifications Host
  • The H6 3.0 engine in LL Bean Edition of Outback (00 - 04 Year) does not have head gasket issue like in H4. As for smelling hot, it is difficult to quantify with sensory skill. I would trust the temperature gauge. So far, I have done only routine maintenance on my 02 LL Bean and am happy with the car.

  • I'm not surprised that it is hot, as I am fully aware that an engine is hot under the hood. However, I have been surprised at the smell (as have my husband and father). This is the first car I've had (out of 6) that had smelled as if the engine/oil is is burning when I shut off the engine.
    Thanks for your thoughts and information on your car.
  • Thanks so much!
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,391
    Take a look under the car and check for any signs of oil leaks - especially anything that might be dripping on the exhaust system. Additionally, if there was an oil change recently, there might have been something dripped or smeared on the exhaust.

    Boxer engines are sensitive to oil over-fills; if that happened at any point then there is a chance that one or more seals/gaskets could be developing a leak.
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,391
    I received this notice this morning from Joe Spitz at Carter Subaru, in case anyone in the Seattle area is interested:

    "Sunday Feb 24th we're having a free Child Seat inspection from 10am-2pm. There will be experts here to make sure that the child seat is properly fit in your car. It's from 10-2 and food will be served (!), and it's First Come, First Served so arriving early is a good idea!! It's in our Quick Service building next door and there will lots of room for you and kids."

    I will not vouch for the grammar, but there you have it nonetheless.

    Have a great weekend, folks!

  • I've read about a lot of problems with head gaskets and catalytic converters in the 00-03 range. I am looking to buy a used legacy but don't want to up the price to an 04 do the previous models eg 95-99 era have better reliability in this area? I've also looked at some vehicle which have already had these items fixed. Is this a one time fix or a potentially reocurring problem due to design flaw? Any input or experiences is appreciated. Thanks
  • Hello,
    I'm thinking about buying a Legacy or a Forester 1998-2000 less than 80,000 miles, I have several options in my areas, but suddenly I'm hearing head gaskets rumors. Are those serious?
    What else should I been concerned with these two cars. I know anything can go wrong with used cars, I'm talking about problems specific to those two models
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    It depends - the revised gasket material is better, but you want to make sure that block never overheated severely. It's an alloy block.
  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,661
    Not sure how widespread the issue was, but yes, those early DOHC 2.5 Subies from that timeframe were prone to head gasket failures.

  • Well, that's pretty bad, I'm not sure I want to risk having a head gasket failure. That's a serious repair.
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,391
    Yep; it is spendy if you have a shop do it. For a DIY, the repair is insanely cheap and takes, oh, about 18 hours for a novice from start to finish. I think that eventually the majority of these cars will end up in the hands of mechanics or DIY's, for whom the repair costs are minimal and infrequent. They are fantastic cars, but they do have a few weak spots that must be addressed.
  • thanks for the advice. Is there any good way to tell if the engine has been overheated other than driveability and a visual inspection?
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    You could try a compression test on the cylinders. Look for no more than 10% variation from cylinder to cylinder.

    If the seal is bad, it will likely fail that test.
  • bflynn22bflynn22 Posts: 1
    Just purchased an 08 OB 2.5i and the AM Radio Reception is awful. Aside from the poor overall sound quality, it seems like every time i hit a bump i get static... is this normal for outbacks? Or do i have a loose connection somewhere? If this is normal, has anyone installed an aftermarket antenna to improve the reception... Also, am planning on tinting the rear windows.. Will this further reduce the reception..

    FYI, < 1,000 miles on my ride and car is currently at the dealership having a bad bearing replaced.
  • blackbeanblackbean Posts: 100
    I have an 02 Bean (85k) and recently started smelling a "hot" burning smell (oil or ATF is my guess) after longer car drives. After the last oil change, there were a few drops of oil on the garage floor and I brought back to the dealer. They said the oil level was "high, but not overfilled" and that some oil may have been forced out the dipstick and landed on the exhaust (hence, the hot burning smell). They only wiped off the underpart of the engine ans sent me on my way. I still get a faint hot/burning smell (grr!). I am now due for another oil change and will see if the smell goes away with a proper oil change.
    Hope that helps.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Could also be the CV joint grease. This is usually the case if you only smell it on long drives as it takes a while for the cv grease to heat up and start to flow out a cracked boot and drip onto the exhaust.

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Good point, inspect the boots to make sure they're not torn.

    Our 626 had a torn boot and leaked grease. It made a mess. The wheel, the wheel well, and eventually even an oxygen sensor were damaged.
  • parrett2parrett2 Posts: 6
    I was wondering if anyone knew if the 98 Subraru Legacy Outback Unlimited were ever recalled for wireing problems? Here's the deal...I bought this car from a private owner and it has been the biggest pain in the butt...i have had so many problems with it and i have taken it to somone to look at it a few times and they cant tell me anything. The last time i got it fixed the next day it wouldnt start. It's been out of commission now for about 6 months and noone seems why it wont get spark to start....I have changed a lot of things on this car and still nothing.......I have taken it to 3 or 4 different people that is supposed to know about Subaru's and they still dont know.......Does anyone know or maybe can think of anything that may help in to start this car? It wants to start but there is no spark there for some reasonand i changed the coil pack thinkling it was that and its not......they changed all the wires and plugs and still nothing......If somone can help please do! thanks...
  • jfljfl Posts: 1,346
    Are you sure you're getting fuel into the cylinder?
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