2003 Forester keep or get rid of?

gherman131313gherman131313 Member Posts: 17
2003 Forester 2.5X, 186,000 miles. Had head gasket replaced at 120,000. Now dealer says its leaking oil again (no coolant yet)! Wants $1,700. (NJ).

How much longer will this car last if I have the head gasket done again? Could I possibly get another 80,000 miles.. or will new and different age-mileage related problems pop up?


  • ateixeiraateixeira Member Posts: 72,587
    That's a tough call...and you'd probably know better than anyone else.

    How is the rest of it holding up?

    I do think the engine would last, so long as the heads weren't warped due to overheating.

    Having said that...if you're considering a new car now may be a good time to trade it in.
  • jd_24jd_24 Member Posts: 92
    Where is the oil leak coming from? You seem to imply head gasket. It might be front and/or rear cam seals. $1700 is a bit much for those. Maybe a second opinion from a different shop? I just had cam seals and head gaskets done on our 2001 Outback. Still running with around 220,000 miles.
  • pigironpigiron Member Posts: 1
    I am looking at a 03 Forester with 77,000 miles. Should the timing belt be changed now given the age of the car regardless of the low miles?
  • dcm61dcm61 Member Posts: 1,567
    Scheduled service interval is 105 months (8.75 yrs) or 105K miles, whichever comes first.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Member Posts: 72,587
    Yep, too early, though they do call for an inspection at 90k miles.
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaMember Posts: 15,860
    Too early, on a 2003? I'd say that car is likely 11 years from manufacture (or close to it), which would tell me that belt should be replaced.
    2018 Subaru Crosstrek, 2014 Audi Q7 TDI, 2013 Subaru Forester, 1969 Chevrolet C20, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250
  • dcm61dcm61 Member Posts: 1,567
    Yep, too early, though they do call for an inspection ...

    You need to take your calculator in for an inspection. :P
  • ateixeiraateixeira Member Posts: 72,587
    Missed that, and it was right in the subject line!
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