Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Subaru Crew Problems & Solutions



  • pilot1226pilot1226 Posts: 165
    Thanks for the heads up. Sorry, was typing fast before since I'm on a quick break at work and wanted to try and get a few posts before I had to bring it in tomorrow.

    The shop I'm bringing it to is an authorized Yokohama dealer. I called Yokohama Customer Service as soon as I got home and they referred me to a place nearby, within 10 minutes of driving. The shop told me they'll take it off the rim and inspect it both inside and out and check it for any "hazards" that could have potentially caused it, and failing that, they may consider it a defect. The inspection is at no cost to me.

    The Subaru Dealer nearby quoted me with about $275 for the one tire's installation, balancing, including tax. I'm hoping this authorized dealer can do slightly better.

    Worst case scenario, I get new tires. Best case scenario, I get new tires for free or very low cost to myself. I'll call my insurance company and see if they can do anything with it.

    I don't think I saw any gouges in the sidewall when I did a brief inspection of it, I'll double check it again once it's light out tomorrow. I'm pretty sure the rim was clean, too.

    It's funny, when I left the service department, I swear my eye went right to that tire and I saw the bubble, it's like I never noticed it before hand. Part of me thinks that perhaps the service tech driving it into the shop pranged off something while putting it on the lift, but of course, I can't prove that. It just seems so *noticable* that I can't see how I missed it... I check the tire pressure once a week in my cars.

    Thanks again for the information. What do you think the best plan-of-action is tomorrow? Barter for a pro-rated tire and cut my losses?

  • machiusmachius Posts: 28
    Hi - Any insight appreciated: I have a 2000 Outback at about 90,000 miles. Recently, I started to detect a burnt smell from the engine compartment after driving the car. Occasionally, it gets very strong, particularly after a 1,000-mile ride ;) The smell is reminiscent of the additives found in camping gas, i.e., it's kind of a foul-ish smell. My Subaru service person thinks it's a small crack in the engine, releasing a tiny amount of oil that gets onto a very hot part of the engine. There is no noticeable drop in oil levels, so the released amount is small, and he says the crack is nothing to be worried about, but it should be fixed, best when the timing belt is going to be replaced, because the crack does not seem to be easily accessible. Well, I have that big service coming up anyway, but I want to go in prepared. I am not sure if I believe the thing about the crack.

    In an 'unrelated' incident, I also got the 'Check Engine' light recently. A read-out of the error code indicates problems with the oxygen sensor(s). I am almost tempted to think that the smell simply is a result of a faulty oxygen sensor and, therefore, an insufficient combustion of gasoline.

    Could it be something else? I was about to burn a small sample of every fluid in the car to see if I can find out which one the smell might come from. I don't know what the sweet-ish smell of coolant is that people with head-gasket problems report. Could it be that? Any other ideas?

    Thanks so much in advance! Cheers - MM
  • lilbluewgn02lilbluewgn02 PAPosts: 1,085
    My WRX recently had a smell also. It turned out to be leaks form the cam and crank seals and valve cover gaskets hitting the hot engine. I am waiting for the parts and it was also suggested I do the timing belt an spark plug change while they are in there. I am having a well recommended local Subaru mechanic do the work when the parts come in. This is on my 2002 WRX, which has approximately 71,000 miles on it.
  • kurtamaxxxguykurtamaxxxguy Posts: 1,747
    Given some states love to throw Salt on roads,
    have Subaru owners noticed any particular place on the vehicle that seems prone to rust?

    I have anti-corrosion sprays but don't want to go wild spraying the stuff everywhere under the chassis. :blush:
  • jay_24jay_24 Posts: 536
    Wisconsin and Minnesota are the kings of salt throwing. There are days with more salt on the road than snow or ice. That said, the trusty little `01 outback I have has zero rust, even with a good number of paint chips on the hood. Granted the chips are only down to the primmer and not to bare metal. The other plus of the older subies is the plastic cladding, maybe not for looks, but for the rust proof. The lower rocker panels and door edges tend to be the rust zones on most vehicals in this area. Most cars/trucks in the last 10 years don't seem to rust nearly as bad as before.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    My 98 Forester did well as far as the panels went.

    I had the plasti-chrome lettering on the back hatch start to oxidize, though it was more a loss of shine. I'm not sure if they were coated metal or plastic.

    Certain parts of the exhaust - like hanger, were starting to rust also. Also some brake parts.

    Mostly surface rust. They salt the roads here big time. I also drove it on the beach several times, getting salt water on the undercarriage.

    Fun, but a mess to clean up later.
  • toboggantoboggan Posts: 283
    My '98 OBW Ltd 5 spd has been run through a car wash that sprays the bottom and wheel wells quite thoroughly. I do this religiously during the Minnesota winters. Also touched up any paint scratches as I found them.

    The only rust spot is on the top at the rear screw on the roof protector. When it finally gets warm enough up here, I'll unscrew the offending screw, lift the protector, scrape the rust off, put on rust stuff and repaint the silver dollar sized area.

    There is only 118,000 miles on the OBW (semi-retired since we bought a 2008 Tribeca for our main vehicle). Plus we tow it behind the motor home. But I'm now eyeing the 2010 Outbacks.
  • martijnhmartijnh Posts: 24
    Hi all,

    Greetings from our 2 Subaru family. Our 2000 OB Ltd has finally started to show its age after 9 years and 115k of faithful service. After 2 incidents of the CEL coming on (Cylinder 4 misfire), the dealer took a look. Here's the report:
    - Valve adjustment needed to avoid engine misfire ($500)
    - Headgasket leaking, apparently oil on one side, coolant on the other (I'm a little concerned about this diagnosis. ($2500, incl valve adjustment)
    - Front wheelbearings need to be replaced. It's been making a clunky noise for a long time, but never diagnosed properly. ($750)

    Of course, dealer quotes are usually generous. So I wanted to know if one of you has a suggestion for a more affordable, yet trustworthy,mechanic in the San Francisco Bay Area. We actually have a 3rd car (MINI!!), so I can easily drop the Subie off anywhere and leave it to be repaired.

    Then there is the 'Am I doing the right thing by spending up to $3000 on a car worth about double that' question. Should I trade in an pick up a 2009 as that model is on the way out? Or even a 2010?

    Would appreciate advice on a mechanic in the SF Bay area, and whether I can reasonably expect this car to have a number of worry-free years if I spend some big $$$ on it.


    Thank you for your responses
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    With that high mileage I think I'd cut my losses and just trade it in now, even if you don't get much for it.
  • kurtamaxxxguykurtamaxxxguy Posts: 1,747
    At 9 years your vehicle has given long and faithful service.
    Most consumer mags I've reviewed saying that if repairs cost half the value of the device, it's time to get new one.

    Wrt new OB, if you want turbo, '09 is last year you can get one. '10 also appears to simplify the AWD system (planetary diff is gone in all in all but H-6 engine version).
    The '10 CVT, while impressive in design, is new. '10 has more interior room and is remarkably more like the Forester.

    You might try driving an '09 XT-L as well as an Outback.
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,269
    Most consumer mags I've reviewed saying that if repairs cost half the value of the device, it's time to get new one.

    Haha; of course they will say that.... they want you to keep consuming! :P
  • kurtamaxxxguykurtamaxxxguy Posts: 1,747
    Consumer Reports has a fair bit of info on this subject.

    If you really like what you are driving, then it may be worth investing half the vehicle's value in repairs.
    But keep in mind there may be other problems lurking. Cars wear out.
    I had my '83 Toyota Camry until '92, and in '92 its paint was badly fading, engine was burning oil, suspension was nearly worn out, various parts rusting. Though it was maintained regularly, that car was done. However, other than two timing belts and disk rotors, it was a solid reliable piece of transportation.
  • phil2000phil2000 New JerseyPosts: 195
    I have a 2000 Forester (294,625 miles) and I have been blessed that despite my driving habit it has sevred me well. Yes, I had a problem, but that was because I opted out of replacing a part that came back and bit me big time in the butt. Right now I am getting 24 mpg. There are not many new SUVs that get that kind of mileage.

    I keep my cars until they are beyond my ability to repair or our family out grows them.

    I had a1985 Chrysler Laser the had 196,000 miles before it threw a rod. I overhauled that engine at 176,000. I also had a 1992 Nissan Sentra. I donated it to charity for the Forester. It had 229,000 miles and no engine work.

    Parts do wear out. As long as they can be replaced, you can keep a vehicle for decades. In 1975, I read an article in Popular Mechanics about a man who had an Internation Harvester truck that had 1.5 million miles.

    I am hoping to get the award for the Forester with the most miles. Maybe your Outback and my Forester can celebrate our 20th B-day together.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Sweet, let us know when you hit 300k.

    I think there is a quarter-million-mile club for Subarus.
  • sgloonsgloon Posts: 303
    My old '86 Subaru Hatchback had 285,000 before someone totaled it while it was parked last spring. So they can go a long time...

    However, I never had any of the mechanical issues you mentioned in your post. Only had to replace parts as they wore out, like tires, oil. Water pump finally went about 225k. Not much really wore out.

    Not sure how long the newer ones will last...
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,269
    Fun testimonials, and that was basically my point. Mechanical items wear out and require repair/replacement from time to time. But, as long as the vehicle itself remains solid and it meets the needs of the user, rarely will an already-owned vehicle be more expensive than opting for a new one.

    In this case, replacement of head gaskets, etc., is all normal maintenance. It is labor intensive (though not difficult) and therefore expensive if a shop performs the work, but with as few of miles as is on that car, I think it is short-sighted to consider replacing it at this juncture. That is assuming it continues to meet the needs of the owner.

    Far more than $3500 will be spent on a new car in the first year of ownership alone...
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,269
    I wonder if there is a quarter-million club for Dodge Caravans? I bet it is a lonely club if there is.... ;)
  • Stever@EdmundsStever@Edmunds YooperlandPosts: 38,927
    The guy who kept my '89 Voyager alive had a Caravan that had been a taxi and he had over 250,000 miles on it. Then he moved to Seattle and my Voyager barely got to 90,000 miles before I traded it in. :sick:
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Yeah but BOTH of those owners are very satisfied. ;)
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,269
    Hahahah, well said. I will keep my hopes at bay. I was looking forward to that mark with my '96 Outback, and look what happened there.... :cry: Admittedly, though, things could have gone much worse.
Sign In or Register to comment.