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1996 Outback Legacy Overheating Unusual Symptoms?


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16 replies to this topic

#1 joalrabr

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Posted 23 October 2013 - 11:09 PM

Severity of overheating has been gradual. No signs of moisture on engine or in tail pipe. No oil in water or water in oil. It loses a tremendous amount of coolant within 3 miles. When idling the temperature gauge goes down. Guage goes up when driving. Also if I start the car and just let it idle for up to half an hour it will not overheat. The only place I see water after it overheats is near the overflow tank. Just a little. Turning the heater on doesn't cool it down but no heat is coming from the heater now. The heater worked when the problem started a couple of months ago. The car loses a lot of coolant within 2 1/2 miles. The car is obviously loosing fluid but other than a little at the top of the overflow tank can't see an obvious leak anywhere. The radiator has less than 5,000 miles on it. It also looks like there has been an overflow on the top of the radiator because stains are noticeable. Can someone please tell me what the problem might be? Thanks.



#2 okamikai

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Posted 24 October 2013 - 01:06 AM

Sounds like a bad Cam Head gasket, same thing happened to mine, it puked coolant through the bottle and it was barely noticiable, until I left it idle with the hood open and watch as the magic happened, the reason you are not seeing it on the exhaust its because it hasn't broken through completely. Do a compression test on all cylinders to rule this out, but it's very likely that it is a bad head gasket. The overflow tank would only leak if it was all the way full when the overflow happens, but it would not cause severe loss of coolant like that. When compression leaks into the cooling canals of the engine it will create excesive pressure on the cooling system, and since the overflow tank only has a plastic cap it becomes the weakest point, thus the coolant will be expelled. The gauge thing is because of hot air inside the flow of coolant, since coolant has been lost gaps of hot air will make the sensor read high temps, and lower temps when the coolant passes, until eventually there's not enough coolant to bring the temp down. Trust me these engines heat up really fast without proper levels of coolant. CHECK ALL THE WATER HOSES THEY MAY BE CRACKED TOO, OR TOO OLD TO HANDLE NEW PRESSURE BUILD UP!

 

- Cylinder Pressure Check (Very Important)

- Check Hoses by pressing them and hear for crackling noise

- Change Radiator Cap it may be bad

- If there's no coolant to reach heater it will not heat up

 

If Cam Head Gasket is Bad

- Repair cam heads as they can warp do to excesive heat

- Change Water Pump, Timing Belt and tensioner, and idler pulleys

- Cam head Bolts must be changed, DO NOT USE THE OLD ONES!!

- Find if there is a revised version of the Head Gasket to avoid the problem from happening again

 

I hope everything goes well, I advise to do this because you may damage the engine severely if not attended ASAP, good luck...



#3 grossgary

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Posted 24 October 2013 - 05:48 AM

headgasket.  that engine eats them like candy.

 

they don't mix oil/coolant and compression and leak down tests are pointless on this engine as well, they usually pass all those tests so don't waste your time or let a mechanic waste his doing those tests.

 

the best test for that particular motor is exhaust gases in the coolant. there are kits to test it yourself or a mechanic can do it.

 

swap in a $300 EJ22 and be done with it and get another 100,000 reliable/cheap miles.



#4 ivans imports

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Posted 24 October 2013 - 09:40 AM

Headgaskets and headgaskets over and over and over 3 thiss week for me all the same bubbles and combustion in rad pushing out coolant into overflow. Brings this years total to over 25 95-98 outback 2.5ds with this headgasket problem in a row all acting the same. Surface heads new gaskets seals ect and good to go.



#5 okamikai

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Posted 24 October 2013 - 03:39 PM

I read here somewhere that Subaru had made a revised version of the gaskets, how true is this?



#6 ivans imports

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Posted 25 October 2013 - 09:16 AM

I use the felpro one as they are slightly thicker witch acomadates the head surfacing better i find the subaru ones are very thin and after planing makes the piston very close to head. as far as longevity they all seem to last the same i glue mine with avionic form a gasket to insalate the gasket from heat and coolant. This works well i never install them dry. I have tryed all kinds of gaskets none seem any better than the rest as far as holding up.



#7 MilesFox

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Posted 25 October 2013 - 09:23 AM

Your engine should still use the old composite HG's that were not prone to the same failures. Your engine must have been overheated from low coolant to begin with, and now it is pushing out coolant. Replacing the HG's would be a permanent fix. The HG part for this engine is the same as it would have been. The updated gaskets apply tothe MLS gaskets used in ej25d and phase 2 engines.



#8 bluedotsnow

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Posted 25 October 2013 - 12:02 PM

check your water pump / heater core bypass hose! its located above the thermostat housing coming out of the water pump very small coolant line. on my car I did my HG's replaced almost all the hoses a week goes by and I start to loose coolant the only way i know this is  religiously check just having done my hg's... one day i was driving to San francisco airport about an hours drive on my way back I notice HOLY spoob I'm at the top of my temp guage and the car is accelerating like spoob! so I pop it into neutral engine off and cost to the shoulder. I had very little coolant anywhere in my block..... this whole time I was looking for drips or seepage from the block but the hole in the heater core hose was so small cut by the hose clamp holding it on that it would only leak when pressurized. this pressure and the heat of the engine would also men that if it only leaked while driving on the freeway by the time I could pull over to check it would all be dry by that time.

 

when coolant is lost through this hose it drains the heater core so effectively it will stop heat from coming out your vents.  



#9 ocei77

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Posted 25 October 2013 - 05:46 PM

- Cam head Bolts must be changed, DO NOT USE THE OLD ONES!!

-

 

Says who?

 

O.



#10 okamikai

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Posted 26 October 2013 - 10:17 AM

Says who?

 

O.

If you like to take the risk of the bolts breaking on torquing then be my guest, I rather use new unpunished ones.



#11 Dakotademon7

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Posted 26 October 2013 - 01:22 PM

I used my old head bolts on mine when I did my head gasket. I read loads of posts on other forums about upswing them with no problems.

#12 Gloyale

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Posted 26 October 2013 - 02:46 PM

If you like to take the risk of the bolts breaking on torquing then be my guest, I rather use new unpunished ones.

 

There is absolutely no reason to use new bolts.

 

They are steel bolts threading into an aluminum engine.  If you torque them too hard you will rip the threads out of the block before coming anywhere close to breaking the bolt.

 

FelPro perpetuates this myth so they can sell you $100 worth of totally unneeded bolts.

 

Subaru does not advise replacing them and their dealer service departments don't replace them.

 

Again, this is a myth.....not applicable to subarus.



#13 Dakotademon7

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Posted 26 October 2013 - 04:45 PM

Thank you. Most people think they are stretch bolts do the the degree torque method. The degree's are to compensate for creep. Creep is the extra friction of the steel bolt head moving against the softer aluminum. That is my understanding of it.

#14 joalrabr

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Posted 27 October 2013 - 10:21 PM

Thank you everyone for your replies. I so want my problem to be a hose with a massive leak but I'm afraid it's going to be the head gasket. I don't know whether to fix it or buy another Outback. The car actually runs very well (very smooth). Cold weather is coming soon. Do I add anti freeze and let idle to circulate or drain the water that is in it out?



#15 ocei77

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Posted 27 October 2013 - 11:09 PM

If you can do it yourself, then keep the car. If not, buy another.

The HG's would be fixed but there is the good possibility that the bearings have been compromised  if there has been a lot of overheating.

May not be, but if so, you'll lose the bottom end at some point and have to buy another car or engine.

Do a search for procedure to "burp" Subaru engines.

Just add antifreeze to what's there.

 

O.



#16 ivans imports

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Posted 28 October 2013 - 08:59 AM

well have reused over 200 sets of head bolts with no problems funny thing is only ever had headbolt problems with new bolts that were subpar materials that broke or failed. Hmm china steel or japan steel unless you are buying subaru head bolts have had 0 luck with aftermarket ones exepet arp studs.



#17 MilesFox

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Posted 28 October 2013 - 09:21 AM

Fill the coolant via the upper radiator hose to get coolant into the block before adding to the radiator. I just re-read all of this, and my prior post applies tot he ej22. So you should have the ej25d, use the updated gasket for it. As long as you didnt overheat it enough to stall or boil the ool, you will be fine.

 

Go the extra step and slap on a pair of ej22e heads as un upgrade, the only caveat to that is you wil lhave to run higher octane fuel, but you will gain compression, power, and simpler timing components(more reliable)






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