I have 175K miles on my '99 -- with all the information available on the internet nowadays and coming from Toyotas and Hondas I was at first skeptical about its long term reliability. It has surpassed my expectations and if the body doesn't rot out, I'd like to turn 300K miles.
Yours should last a while. Why did you replace the t-belt at 85K, and what was replaced (e.g, idlers, H20 pump, cam & crank seals)? Belts rarely snap -- it's usually a bad idler, usually the cogged one that fails and shreds the belt in the process.
Ball joints and steering linkages are pretty solid on these cars -- no need to replace unless there's play in the joint.
The next major foreseeable expense might be the struts -- not too bad if you do them yourself. I just replaced them on my car, and the original ones were just starting to go bad -- not fully blown but definitely on their last legs.
Wheel bearings can go on any higher mileage car. You can help prolong the life of front ones by replacing the inner wheel seal when replacing your CV half shafts.
I replace the coolant every 60K miles/4-5 years -- most of the stuff on the market today is long life. I just do a drain-and-fill to refresh the corrosion inhibitors but on a neglected cooling system, you may need to flush.
I have a manual, but would do as others have suggested with your auto.
1-3-2-4, on 27 May 2013 - 20:12, said:
the starter.. DON'T buy the whole starter when it's just $6 for starter
contacts.. I'm not sure how much the OP was wants to do but I changed
mine in my car in 20 min.. Your call.. $6 contacts or $200 starter
On the older Denso starters, replacing contacts is very easy and definitely worthwhile. Forester starters are equipped with a sealed solenoid, on which It is possible to replace the contacts, just a more delicate and time consuming process.
As usual, great advice from grossgary -- you might have better luck with a used, lower mileage alternator from a junk yard, which can be had on ebay.
As mentioned, the CV half shafts made by NTN Bearing Company of Japan will last the life of the vehicle if boots are replaced in a timely manner. The front inner one is usually the first to go, especially on the right where it's directly above the catalytic convertor. I bought a used OEM unit that I rebooted and rotated into the mix. This way, I have a good one ready and can reboot the spare whenever I have the chance.
Edited by hohieu, 31 May 2013 - 08:47 AM.