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Subaru Legacy/Outback Wagons Maintenance & Repair

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Comments

  • dcm61dcm61 Posts: 1,457
    It's primarily '96 to '99 2.5L H4's (Phase I engine). There have been some reports of '00 and '01 2.5L H4 (Phase II engine) head gasket failures. They supposedly redesigned the head gasket to "fix" the problem but I don't know when the redesign took affect.

    FWIW, on this board, there's been about an 8% (per juice) rate of failure reported. YMMV.

    DaveM
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    That data was from a survey in another forum, but yeah.

    Your 2002 should be fine. I haven't come across any of those. It's mostly Phase I engines that were revved a lot.

    -juice
  • toboggantoboggan Posts: 283
    My '98 OBW Limited 5 spd has about 52,000 miles. So far no problems with the head gasket, knock on wood.

    MNSteve
  • cptpltcptplt Posts: 1,075
    is the phase 1 the DOHC and the phase 2 SOHC or do the phases refer to something totally different
  • mjansen1mjansen1 Posts: 46
    Haven't been here since our head gasket blew a few months ago. Because of this website (which SOA said they do have a lot of respect for), my cousin who works at a Chev/Sub. parts dept, and other reasons, SOA covered 75% of the cost of our head gasket even though we had 62+K on our 2000 Outback. Had them do the timing belt while they were in there for only the cost of the belt. I was ready to throw in the towel with SOA but they came through with a reasonable compromise
  • hypovhypov Posts: 3,068
    ^
    |
    Chalk another one up for Patti and her crew (CDS) :D

    -Dave
  • typejtypej Posts: 4
    Hello, I own 00' Legacy GT wagon. I have problem with the noise that seems to come from under the car when I am driving. It's sort of like a humming sound that I am guessing is coming from the transmission. It gets really loud enough for me to unable to carry out the conversation. Is every legacy as loud as this? Or does it indicate something is wrong? I only had the car for less than a year. I love everything about this car except the sound proofing and power. I drive on a highway at about 80 mph everyday for about 60 miles. Can anybody let me know if they had similar experience with 00 legacy wagon?
  • nygregnygreg Posts: 1,936
    Can you be a little more specific? When do you hear it? Under power, no power, auto tranny, etc? My 01 OB is very quiet, sans the Dunlop tires.

    Greg
  • typejtypej Posts: 4
    The noise is not high-pitched sound, it's sort of like a low humming that gets louder as the speed increases. I do about 80mph all the time and it sounds like there is a factory with bunch of machines under my car. I have 00' legacy GT wagon with automatic. I also have aftermarket 15 inch with some no name brand tire (15/60 ?? not sure). My sister has toyota solara and that thing is quiet even at 80mph. This is my first subie and I never driven other subies so I have no idea how the boxer engine suppose to sound.. Maybe it's the tire sound but I doubt it.
  • nygregnygreg Posts: 1,936
    the tires. Mine are. Very noisy. Try rotating your tires in a X pattern and see if the noise changes. Are the pressures OK?

    Greg
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    16" was stock, why did you go down in size?

    My guess is that it's either a wheel bearing or the tires. First thing I'd do is get some good tires on there, check the pressures, etc. Could it be an exhaust leak? Have you checked the fluid in the ATF? Do you know the previous owner?

    -mike
  • dcm61dcm61 Posts: 1,457
    "is the phase 1 the DOHC and the phase 2 SOHC or do the phases refer to something totally different"

    For the most part, 2.5 DOHC are phase I and 2.5L SOHC are phase II. The Phase I and II actually refer to the block. There are some late production 2.5L DOHC that have a phase II block.

    DaveM
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Good to hear they took care of you even past the warranty, Mike.

    I was thinking wheel bearings, too, but on a Legacy GT that would be rare. Maybe it is just the tires.

    Let's not compare a GT with Minus One wheels and tires to a stock Solara. The 15" tires probably have a lower load rating (it's the last number on the tire) and not-as-good heat resistance.

    Do you still have the 16" rims? I'd seriously consider going back to them. At a minimum, check the new tires to make sure the load rating (87 or so?), the speed rating (V), and the heat resistance index (A) are all equal or higher than the stock tire.

    Even if you don't have the rims, I'd buy a used set of rims from a WRX, they're abundant and cheap. Good luck.

    -juice
  • typejtypej Posts: 4
    is the source of the problem. I bought mine used last year and for whatever reason the previous owner put that 15 inch wheels. I wish I have stock wheels instead of mine. I can't get a new tires yet because mines are brand new. Still have a lot of mileage on them. I didn't know the tires could make such a big difference, so I should think about getting new wheels and tires huh..
  • shad12shad12 Posts: 14
    ateixeira: what do you mean revved a lot? I drove mine normally and didn't hot rod it. Where do you get you information? Subaru will not admit any problems with head gaskets.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Did you see Colin's photos of his blown head gasket? The teflon coating sort of cracked off. He autocrossed his car and drive aggressively, and was the one that told me it tends to happen on cars that are revved more, perhaps due to the higher stresses on the engine.

    I have no reason to disagree, in fact he's one of the best in terms of technical resources here.

    -juice
  • shad12shad12 Posts: 14
    I have no reason to disagree with Colin about autocrossed vehicles tending to blow head gaskets as well as many more components. They certainly receive tremendous stress. I would tend to believe that most people do not race their vehicles and still have head gasket problems at lower rpm's. Of course the sampling here at edmonds may consist of a majority of racers rather non racers. Even though I am happy with the performance of my '98 outback, it is not a ball of fire. Therefore I do not involve myself in stop light drag races as I did in the '60s with my big block v8's. My driving is 90% highway and until the temp guage is at normal I rarely rev it past 4000 rpm. And then only in emergency type situations which are quite rare.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    If you also do not tow or haul very heavy loads, I doubt you'll ever have a problem.

    Just change the seals when you change the timing belt. It's a few bucks and the labor is paid for.

    -juice
  • nygregnygreg Posts: 1,936
    the failure in the head gasket (as I understand it) is not between the combustion chamber and the oil and/or coolant passages, but, between the coolant passage and outside - thus no reports of white smoke out the tailpipe and coolant/oil mixing. Running the engine hard should not have an impact on this failure. I like the bolt torque theory. It would be nice to have confirmation that Subaru understands and addressed the issue - something I expect they will do given their history of fixing issues.

    Greg
  • mjansen1mjansen1 Posts: 46
    Yes, the bolt torque theory has been brought up at the water cooler (actually is was class/meeting of Subaru mechanics). No conclusion was reached.
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