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Guest Message by DevFuse

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Head gaskets or not?

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5 replies to this topic

#1 RussellW


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Posted 08 January 2010 - 05:29 PM

I just purchased a 97 Outback sport,2.2 5-speed.I'm really happy with it and paid a good price for it.I'm used to the 2.5 and it's inherent qualities or lack thereof.My car only has 128,000 miles on it and runs great-I'm impressed with how it runs.It has some problems,though.The temp gauge stays right at halfway and doesn't fluctuate.I don't get adequate heat from the heater.It blows coolant out of the reservoir.I worked on this car when the previous owner had it and it was doing it then but he didn't want me to do anything.I'm looking for some ideas on this.I'm used to doing head gaskets on 2.5s and I think I'll probably do them on this.The radiator cap is not a Subaru piece and probably has original thermostat.The coolant is pretty nasty looking.I figure pulling the engine,doing a complete reseal,will be worth it.I plan on keeping this one.Also,I have what sounds like a faint bearing noise while driving,it is trans related,something makes me think input bearing-I don't know if I read something on here or not.I replaced the clutch,fork,throwout when the previous owner had it.Also,are there any effective(financially)performance upgrades for this engine?One more thing-the shifter is really sloppy-what can I do about that.Thank you for any input,

#2 skibumm


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Posted 08 January 2010 - 07:14 PM

No heat, sounds like the thermostat has been gutted, a common temporary solution to head gasket overheating, same with the wrong radiator cap. Only way of telling if the engine is any good is to pull it and have the heads and block checked for warping. I had the same problem when I bought my 97 Obw, engine ran fine, but had a blown head gasket. I just dropped a 2.2 in and was done with it..

#3 RallyKeith


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Posted 09 January 2010 - 09:21 AM

The temp gauge stays right at halfway and doesn't fluctuate.I don't get adequate heat from the heater.It blows coolant out of the reservoir.

That sounds like classic head gasket failure to me. The failed head gasket is allowing combustion pressure into the coolant jacket. This then causes the coolant to not circulate properly giving you the lack of heat, and the excess pressure gets vented through the radiator cap and resivoir.


#4 86subaru


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Posted 09 January 2010 - 10:09 AM

also bought a 97 outback with t-stat out, but dropped a 2.2 in it,

#5 wtdash


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Posted 09 January 2010 - 10:53 AM

Re: Performance....if you're going to pull the engine, send the cams to Delta Camshafts in Tacoma, WA. They have a couple of different grinds they can do. It was about $100/cam last I checked.


#6 nipper


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Posted 09 January 2010 - 11:44 AM

Thats a head gasket. They like to tease you alot. When you do it also do an oil change.


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