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01 legecy head gasket leaking coolant


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29 replies to this topic

#1 bowjam

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Posted 15 November 2005 - 12:19 PM

Last week my 2.5 engine was diagnosed with a coolant leaking left head gasket. I have 57K miles on my 2001 Subaru and this is first problem other than recalls.
The needed service is covered by Subaru's warranty by both the WWP-99 and the drive train warranty.
My question is should I have anything else replaced while the left head is pulled ?
Like oil seals, timing belt, waterpump..ect ?
I understand from my dealership that the engine will not be pulled. Although reading the threads it seems that this is the recommend way of doing a head gasket replacement.
Any suggestions would be much appreciated..

#2 Suzam

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Posted 15 November 2005 - 12:41 PM

57k is a little early for preventive maintainence, the belt is only 1/2 way through it's life, however if it's only the cost of the new belt since the old on needs to be removed, I'd go for it. I'd make sure the seals are inspected but again, with the exisiting ones in place and no problems, I would leave them alone. My 2¢.

#3 bowjam

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Posted 16 November 2005 - 02:26 PM

57k is a little early for preventive maintainence, the belt is only 1/2 way through it's life, however if it's only the cost of the new belt since the old on needs to be removed, I'd go for it. I'd make sure the seals are inspected but again, with the exisiting ones in place and no problems, I would leave them alone. My 2¢.



Suzam
Thanks for the reply and your advice.
I'm waiting for the dealership to call to take the Subaru in for repair.
This is a small dealership and only has one mechanic.
I'm still concern about head gasket replacement without pulling the engine.
Thank you
Bowjam

#4 rweddy

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Posted 16 November 2005 - 04:19 PM

I'm still concern about head gasket replacement without pulling the engine.
Thank you
Bowjam

Why?
The only reason many pull the motor is it is easier to do the work, this will have no effect on the repair.

#5 bowjam

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Posted 21 November 2005 - 06:12 PM

Why?
The only reason many pull the motor is it is easier to do the work, this will have no effect on the repair.


I talked to Subaru Customer Service and was told it was best to pull engine and replace both head gaskets.
If there is a flaw in the old head gasket design I would rather replace both at the same time.
Oh.. well the repair started today. Dealership agreed to replace timing & power belts for cost of parts. So I jumped on that for $73.
Guess I will just have to gamble on the right head gasket not leaking in the middle of a trip 500 miles from home.
My number one priority in a vehicle is dependability. I'm starting to get mixed feeling about Subaru..

#6 nipper

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Posted 21 November 2005 - 06:38 PM

I agree with the dealer, replace both and be done with it. Once its fixed its fixed. Now as far as depndability, im sorry but thats hogwash. I dare you to find any other car besides volvo that has so many models on the road after 200K miles or more. Look at the older generation of subarus and you will find quite a few from the 80's still on the road. Most cars fall apart at 140K, and I mean things like switch gear, interior parts, seats, the parts you touch every day.
I can point to countless other car mfgs with recalls that would blow your mind. Subarus are great dependable cars, and no machne is 100% perfect.
Your getting a great deal, so enjoy it.

nipper

#7 bowjam

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Posted 21 November 2005 - 08:11 PM

I agree with the dealer, replace both and be done with it. Once its fixed its fixed. Now as far as depndability, im sorry but thats hogwash. I dare you to find any other car besides volvo that has so many models on the road after 200K miles or more. Look at the older generation of subarus and you will find quite a few from the 80's still on the road. Most cars fall apart at 140K, and I mean things like switch gear, interior parts, seats, the parts you touch every day.
I can point to countless other car mfgs with recalls that would blow your mind. Subarus are great dependable cars, and no machne is 100% perfect.
Your getting a great deal, so enjoy it.

nipper


Sorry, You got the wires crossed Nipper. The Dealer is replacing the head gasket without pulling the engine and only doing one head. Subaru Customer service suggested pulling engine and doing both heads at once.

I also have a 1998 legacy wagon I bought new and it has 58K miles and a leaking front crankshaft seal. I've babied it from day one. It just seems that I'm having some major problems with both my two subarus. I just sold a 1985 Toyota Camry that I purchased new and never had any problems other than a radiator about 3 years ago. I'm still driving a 1986 Toyota truck that I also purchased new. It's doing very good at 150k and has not costing me any money so far other than the normal repairs. brakes, exhaust, filter and oil changes.
Given the good service I got from Toyota I was hoping the Subarus would serve me as well. Especially with such low mileage on both can't you see why I'm starting to get mixed feeling about Subaru.
BTW Nipper what is the great deal that I'm getting ?

#8 nipper

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Posted 21 November 2005 - 08:22 PM

tis ok .. hehe we are talking cars here and not trucks. YOu know doing one head is going to come back and bite you in the you know what. i would demand the dealer do what subaru suggested. The head gasket design weakness is in both head gaskets, not just the one side.

A word of advice, cars are made to be driven. Somme cars are better at sitting around then others. Your not driving the car enough and the seal has dried out. To have a 98 with only 58K on it is good, but rubber seals will dry out. i wouldnt falt the car, i would fault the lack of use. I hope you are doing oil changes based on the calender and not the milage of the car, as that would help. Seal do need to be lubricated, and the way they get lubricated is to be driven. Low milage and low use can sometimes kill a car faster then high milage. Remeber subarus are designed to last to 400k based on at least 12k milage a year or more. Babying a car sometimes can be a bad thing. i think you need to drive the cars more.

nipper


nipper

#9 rweddy

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Posted 21 November 2005 - 08:46 PM

I also have a 1998 legacy wagon I bought new and it has 58K miles and a leaking front crankshaft seal. I've babied it from day one. It just seems that I'm having some major problems with both my two subarus. I just sold a 1985 Toyota Camry that I purchased new and never had any problems other than a radiator about 3 years ago. I'm still driving a 1986 Toyota truck that I also purchased new. It's doing very good at 150k and has not costing me any money so far other than the normal repairs. brakes, exhaust, filter and oil changes.
Given the good service I got from Toyota I was hoping the Subarus would serve me as well. Especially with such low mileage on both can't you see why I'm starting to get mixed feeling about Subaru.

You consider a front camkshaft seal to be a major problem?

#10 bowjam

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Posted 21 November 2005 - 09:29 PM

tis ok .. hehe we are talking cars here and not trucks. YOu know doing one head is going to come back and bite you in the you know what. i would demand the dealer do what subaru suggested. The head gasket design weakness is in both head gaskets, not just the one side.

A word of advice, cars are made to be driven. Somme cars are better at sitting around then others. Your not driving the car enough and the seal has dried out. To have a 98 with only 58K on it is good, but rubber seals will dry out. i wouldnt falt the car, i would fault the lack of use. I hope you are doing oil changes based on the calender and not the milage of the car, as that would help. Seal do need to be lubricated, and the way they get lubricated is to be driven. Low milage and low use can sometimes kill a car faster then high milage. Remeber subarus are designed to last to 400k based on at least 12k milage a year or more. Babying a car sometimes can be a bad thing. i think you need to drive the cars more.

nipper


nipper


Problem is the head gasket is a warranty repair and is totally under the control of the dealer. This dealer claims it always the left head gasket that leaks.
Since the head is off and the repair to be completed tomorrow there is not a lot I can do about it..
Both Subarus are driven everyday to work with is less than 2 miles from home.
I change the oil myself every 3k. Did the same with the 85 & 86 Toyota and didn't have dry seal problems.

BTW doesn't subaru have a truck (BRAT) with the same 2.5 engine as the cars ? I've even seen the 2.2 in a gyrocopter.. :>)
Sorry,I don't understand what difference it makes on head gaskets or seals if the engine is in a truck or car..
No doubt you've had good luck with Subaru.

Nipper thanks for your help and suggestions.

#11 bowjam

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Posted 21 November 2005 - 09:50 PM

You consider a front camkshaft seal to be a major problem?


1998 Subaru legacy wgn 2.2

When Subaru want to replace the timing belt, water pump and crankshaft seal all at the same time at a cost of over $750 I consider it major.

#12 rweddy

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Posted 21 November 2005 - 11:02 PM

1998 Subaru legacy wgn 2.2

When Subaru want to replace the timing belt, water pump and crankshaft seal all at the same time at a cost of over $750 I consider it major.


This is preventive maintance, wait until you need to change the timing chain in your Toyota truck. The timing chain needs to be replaced at 100-120k and if you have the dealership do it, you will shell out $2500. Unless your timing guides (plastic) has worn through then your block is toast. Toyotas are great vehicles but they also have their quirks just like Subaru and I do not consider a $15 dollar seal to be a major issue imo.

#13 Bmm001

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Posted 22 November 2005 - 08:42 AM

When Subaru want to replace the timing belt, water pump and crankshaft seal all at the same time at a cost of over $750 I consider it major.



That's why it is great to find an independent Subie mechanic that will do better work for much less $$! :grin:

Brian M.

#14 bowjam

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Posted 22 November 2005 - 02:10 PM

This is preventive maintance, wait until you need to change the timing chain in your Toyota truck. The timing chain needs to be replaced at 100-120k and if you have the dealership do it, you will shell out $2500. Unless your timing guides (plastic) has worn through then your block is toast. Toyotas are great vehicles but they also have their quirks just like Subaru and I do not consider a $15 dollar seal to be a major issue imo.


With 150 K miles on truck I'm way ahead even if it blows up today.
Doubt if I could sell the truck for $2500 and it running great..long bed extra cab..

#15 bowjam

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Posted 22 November 2005 - 02:16 PM

That's why it is great to find an independent Subie mechanic that will do better work for much less $$! :grin:

Brian M.


I wish I could.. I'm looking but so far I found a mechanic that will do only limited work on the Subies. Any suggestions on how to find Subie Mechanic short of running ad in news paper ?
Thanks
Fred

#16 rweddy

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Posted 22 November 2005 - 03:54 PM

I wish I could.. I'm looking but so far I found a mechanic that will do only limited work on the Subies. Any suggestions on how to find Subie Mechanic short of running ad in news paper ?
Thanks
Fred

Are there no independent shops in the area that specialize in Subaru?
Are you mechanically inclined? Timing belt change is pretty easy on Subaru's.

#17 powderhound

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Posted 22 November 2005 - 04:18 PM

Comparing Toyota truck reliability to anything else on the road is apples and oranges. They're simply indestructible. If you want a reliable car a new(er) subaru is not the way to go.

#18 nipper

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Posted 22 November 2005 - 04:23 PM

Problem is the head gasket is a warranty repair and is totally under the control of the dealer. This dealer claims it always the left head gasket that leaks.
Since the head is off and the repair to be completed tomorrow there is not a lot I can do about it..
Both Subarus are driven everyday to work with is less than 2 miles from home.
I change the oil myself every 3k. Did the same with the 85 & 86 Toyota and didn't have dry seal problems.

BTW doesn't subaru have a truck (BRAT) with the same 2.5 engine as the cars ? I've even seen the 2.2 in a gyrocopter.. :>)
Sorry,I don't understand what difference it makes on head gaskets or seals if the engine is in a truck or car..
No doubt you've had good luck with Subaru.

Nipper thanks for your help and suggestions.



no problem. The early brat was a 1.8L and the baja is a 2.5 L. 2 miles a day is really low to drive a car, as the oil never gets to heat up or really flow. Once a week i would give it a un, or at least once a month a good highway run to lubricate things.
My dad had a 73 dodge dart that we had to junk at 60K miles, he too drove 3 miles a day, and everything just sort of fell apart from lack of use. i think we had to get rid of it in 85.

nipper

#19 rweddy

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Posted 22 November 2005 - 04:50 PM

Comparing Toyota truck reliability to anything else on the road is apples and oranges. They're simply indestructible. If you want a reliable car a new(er) subaru is not the way to go.

Have you ever owned one? I have owned 5 and they are not as indestructible as legend holds. Landcruisers yes, the trucks no. Not taking anything away from them, they are great trucks but a Subaru is just as reliable and parts are way cheaper. I would much rather change out a timing belt than a timing chain on a 22r or 22re.

#20 tunered

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Posted 22 November 2005 - 05:03 PM

i have worked in the autobody business since i was 16 years old,i will say that i have replaced more toyota sheetmetal because of rust than any other import,probbally enough metal to rebuild the twin towers.

#21 bowjam

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Posted 22 November 2005 - 07:46 PM

Are there no independent shops in the area that specialize in Subaru?
Are you mechanically inclined? Timing belt change is pretty easy on Subaru's.


No inderpendent Subaru shops that I know of in the small city of Martinsville,VA.
We lucky to have a Subaru dealership.. Next closest one is 50 miles away.

I worked at a service station in the early 60's when they did everything.
Owned a 70 Lotus Europa S2 during the 70's and did all the work on it myself..
I'm right much older now and changing the plugs, oil, and filters in the Subaru
is about all I can manage anymore..
http://www.google.co...pa &btnG=Search

#22 bowjam

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Posted 22 November 2005 - 07:51 PM

i have worked in the autobody business since i was 16 years old,i will say that i have replaced more toyota sheetmetal because of rust than any other import,probbally enough metal to rebuild the twin towers.


Don't you think that's because the engine & drive train last nearly forever ?

#23 bowjam

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Posted 22 November 2005 - 08:14 PM

This is preventive maintance, wait until you need to change the timing chain in your Toyota truck. The timing chain needs to be replaced at 100-120k and if you have the dealership do it, you will shell out $2500. Unless your timing guides (plastic) has worn through then your block is toast. Toyotas are great vehicles but they also have their quirks just like Subaru and I do not consider a $15 dollar seal to be a major issue imo.


I would never take an out of warranty 86 Toyota truck to any dealership for repair. Too easy to find independent repair shop.
I haven't heard of timing chain being replaced in 24R every 100k or even at 200k. I've had my truck for 20 years and I'm expecting it to out last me..
Hope I'm wrong though.. :>)

I don't consider a $50 seal to be major either, but the labor is major $$ at a dealership.


#24 tunered

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Posted 22 November 2005 - 08:26 PM

I would never take an out of warranty 86 Toyota truck to any dealership for repair. Too easy to find independent repair shop.
I haven't heard of timing chain being replaced in 24R every 100k or even at 200k. I've had my truck for 20 years and I'm expecting it to out last me..
Hope I'm wrong though.. :>)

I don't consider a $50 seal to be major either, but the labor is major $$ at a dealership.

keep checking your oil and watch for metal on the stick,when the chain tensioner wears out the chain rubs the metal holder and creates this metal dust.

#25 bowjam

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Posted 22 November 2005 - 08:29 PM

no problem. The early brat was a 1.8L and the baja is a 2.5 L. 2 miles a day is really low to drive a car, as the oil never gets to heat up or really flow. Once a week i would give it a un, or at least once a month a good highway run to lubricate things.
My dad had a 73 dodge dart that we had to junk at 60K miles, he too drove 3 miles a day, and everything just sort of fell apart from lack of use. i think we had to get rid of it in 85.

nipper



I was only trying to point out that both Subie are driven everyday.
At 58K on 98 in 8 years it would average out to 20 mile a day 7 day week.
I agree I don't burn up the road and I do try to save a little gasoline.
I haven't had the seal problems with the Toyotas and they experienced about the same driving profile over last 20 years.





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