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Guest Message by DevFuse

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Questions about Timing Belt, Oil Pump-97 Outback

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11 replies to this topic

#1 cbone


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Posted 19 February 2004 - 02:52 PM

Greetings all and thanks in advance for any help. I have a 97 outback wagon, 75K, took it into the shop, they said the oil pump gasket was bad and leaking oil. i never had any oil lose when changing the oil and never had black smoke or a puddle underneath. anyway, the said since they were doing the gasket to also change the timing belt. they did that work and a few days later the car overheated and the check engine light went on. had to then replace thermostat, thermostat gasket, lower hose from radiator and still the engine light is on. i have never had any problems with this wagon and as soon as i take it in, they tell me the oil is leaking, they replace timing belt, the car overheats for the first time ever and the check engine light remains on. idled rough for a bit after the mechanics did radiator, but now seems all right. please help, what's giong on with my wagon?:mad:

#2 outback_97


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Posted 19 February 2004 - 03:47 PM


What prompted you to take it to the shop? I'm just curious if it had some other problem.

I can't answer all of your questions, but maybe a few.

It's common for the oil pump seals to leak in this car, it happened to mine and many have reported this problem. Oil can collect at the bottom of the timing belt cover and they may have been concerned that oil getting on the timing belt would have shortened its life. On mine oil was seeping through the timing belt cover gasket, and blowing back onto the oil pan and exhaust. Didn't notice much, and no pooling below the car because it only leaked when the car was running. Very little oil loss (< 1/2 quart in 3000 miles).

Random overheating can be a sign of head gasket problems, but that's just a possibility and hopefully not the case here. Can you get the codes stored in the car checked to see what the CEL is? That's what I would suggest doing.


edit: here a link re: the oil pump leaking thru tb cover:
http://www.ultimates...ming belt cover

#3 cbone


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Posted 19 February 2004 - 04:16 PM


Thanks for your feedback and I will check out the link you provided. The car belongs to my girlfriend and she took it in because she said it was due for maintenance.

I too am hoping it isn't the head gasket. I will try and get the codes, as I know the mechanics did hook it up and mentioned something to her.

Thanks again for your feedback and great picture of your wagon up there in the mountains of Utah.

#4 theotherskip


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Posted 19 February 2004 - 05:18 PM

people often associate trouble after service with the service that was just performed. it sounds like you are having different problems. assuming they didn't change the water pump, they probably didn't mess with the cooling system at all. the oil leak is a common problem on this engine, as are head gasket failures. if you see reoccuring overheating, have it checked.

i wrote a site about the head gasket failures. hopefully the new thermostat will fix yours. you can view it here .

#5 SevenSisters


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Posted 19 February 2004 - 06:18 PM

I have not done a timing belt replacement yet, but is it common to UNPLUG the fans or remove the radiator when the TB is changed to gain access?

#6 theotherskip


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Posted 19 February 2004 - 06:48 PM

it is not necessary, but buys you a lot of extra space. i would guess that subaru tech do not remove it, as they are very familiary with how to work around it quickly.

#7 99obw


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Posted 19 February 2004 - 06:59 PM

I would almost guarantee that the subaru tech removes the fans when doing a timing belt. It only takes a couple of minutes and it frees up a lot of space. I agree with Skip that removing the radiator is unnecessary and it is unlikely that they did.

The overheating does seem a little suspicious to me.

#8 svxpert


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Posted 19 February 2004 - 07:06 PM

<<Greetings all and thanks in advance for any help. I have a 97 outback wagon, 75K, took it into the shop,>>

Was is a Subaru Service Shop? or just a fix-all shop?

#9 theotherskip


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Posted 19 February 2004 - 07:09 PM

whoops. posted to the wrong thread. all moved now...

#10 1 Lucky Texan

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Posted 19 February 2004 - 07:35 PM

cbone - is this a Legacy or Impreza outback?

Also, does it overheat at stops then cool down again when moving briskly? If so, could be the fan not coming on.

#11 richierich



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Posted 20 February 2004 - 02:39 AM

I don't know of a mechanic that doesn't take off the fans to do the timingbelts. Maybe they took off the radiator hoses? Then did not refill the the motor through the top radiator hose and created a bubble? I see it about once a month, mostly people working on their own vehicles:-p. Replacing the radiator problably solved the problem if they refilled it correctly.

Just a stab in the dark.

What is the check engine code. Did they clear it, after the replaced the radiator, etc.?

#12 cbone


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Posted 20 February 2004 - 04:59 PM

thanks everyone for all this great feedback. i am an old toyota landcruiser FJ60 man personally, but have found this bulletin board fantastic. you all have provided me with some great info. I was not able to find out the codes, but the car is not overheating at this point and it is a Legacy wagon.

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