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Guest Message by DevFuse

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Which engine models blow head gaskets?

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36 replies to this topic

#26 nipper


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Posted 04 March 2007 - 11:13 AM

Follow-up question: After replacing the EJ25 with a new head gasket set, how long do you expect it to last? Will the head gasket blow again in approx 100k mile due to the design of the engine? Or will other parts of the engine fail before the new head gasket fails again?

There is no firm answer on this. If you replaced a headgasket at 140,000 miles, no one can say what your engine will be like at 240,000 miles. Now if you replaced one below 100,000 miles it should be able to make it to over 200,000 miles.
My obw never had a HG issue, but due to the previous owners once a year oil changes it threw a rod at 190,000 miles.

Now if you are the original owner, and maintain your cars, then yes it should last over 100K, hell maybe way into 200k.
It's like asking if you wil still be alive and healthy in 10 years, you make the safe assumption that you will be, but no guarentees. As you get closer to 80, its hard to say yes with that.


#27 bratman2


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Posted 04 March 2007 - 11:44 AM

Of the Neons, I know only three owners and all had headgasket failures before 100k miles. Sure some have made it past 100k but I don't know of them.

#28 nipper


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Posted 04 March 2007 - 11:56 AM

Of the Neons, I know only three owners and all had headgasket failures before 100k miles. Sure some have made it past 100k but I don't know of them.

neons are the only one that i will agree have a 100% failure rate. Chrysler denies it.


#29 bulwnkl


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Posted 28 May 2007 - 12:24 PM

Fortunately for Neon owners (like me), the 2g motors had adjustments made which appear to have solved the issue. For example, they machined all the head bolt/stud holes deep enough so that all bolts can provide the proper clamping force on the entire gasket so that it won't fail.

Thank you, fellows, for making and cleaning up this thread.

#30 DerFahrer


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Posted 28 May 2007 - 12:57 PM

a) EJ22* - 2.2L 4 cyl SOHC 135HP/140ftlbs (most solid & non interference)
Legacy 90-96
Impreza 95-01
NO Gasket problem on the older ones, rare on newer models

The EJ22 had hydraulic lifters up through 96, and only had 130hp/137tq in that itineration. EJ22s 97-up were solid lifter and interference. They were used on the Legacy through 99 and the Impreza through 01.

B) EJ251 - 2.5L 4cyl SOHC 155HP/155ftlbs
Impreza '00-'02
Forester '00-'02
YES Gasket problem: external coolant leak
Non turbo EJ25 engine.

These were 165hp for sure, and I think 165tq. They were used in the 99-04 Impreza, 00-04 Legacy/Outback, and 99-04 Forester.

C) EJ252 2.5L SOHC
Legacy '00
YES Gasket problem: external coolant leak

EJ252 is just an EJ251 in a certain car. I think it's more years than just 00, and I think it's just in the L. Not sure on this though.

D) EJ253 2.5L SOHC
Impreza '02-'07
Legacy '01-'02
Forrester '99
NO Gasket problem past 2003
Designed to take turbo boost.

All my sources indicate the EJ253 was never used on a car before 05, and that ALL nonturbo EJ25s from 05-up are EJ253s. It is NOT designed to take turbo boost.

E) EJ25D 2.5L DOHC
Legacy '96-'99
Forester '98-'99
YES Gasket problem: Internal leak/blown

Not used in the Forester in 99, but used in the Impreza 2.5RS only in 98.

F) EJ25E 2.5L DOHC
Impreza '99-'01
Forester '99-'00
Legacy '00-'01
YES Gasket problem: Internal/blown

No such thing as an EJ25E...

G) EJ255 2.5L DOHC turbo
Impreza '06-Now
Forester '02-Now
Legacy '05-Now
NO Gasket problem
Designed to get turbo boost.

Used in the Forester XT only from 04-up. Edit: Forgot the Baja in 05 and 06.

H) EJ257 - 2.5L DOHC turbo 300HP/?
Impreza WRX STi '04-Now
NO Gasket problem
Designed to get turbo boost.

This is pretty much correct. Had 300tq to begin with, but when the SAE ratings changed, the 300hp and 300tq marks came down to 293.

I)EG33 - 6-cyl
NO Gasket problem
G series are closed deck.

The EG33 is just an EJ22 with two extra cylinders. They are NOT closed-deck.

Other stuff: All EJ engines became Phase II in 99. All Phase II engines have solid lifters, as best I know, all nonturbo engines are piston-valve interference, and ALL DOHC Subaru engines are valve-valve interference.

As best I can tell, the EJ251 was used uniformly from 99-04 in the Impreza line (Impreza and Forester) and from 00-04 in the Legacy line (Legacy and Outback). Due to the external leak issues, the EJ253 came out in 05 and is now used in all Subaru nonturbo cars, minus the EZ30 H6. There have been remote issues with EJ253s, but nothing that seems to determine a mass defect in the engine build.

And a disclaimer to all this: ANY Subaru can blow a headgasket. EJ22s have blown headgaskets, EG33s have blown headgaskets, EJ20s have blown headgaskets, etc. etc. Overheat them, or take poor care of the cooling system, and it can happen.

#31 schlit


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Posted 28 May 2007 - 01:51 PM

Just because one is an Automotive Engineer doesnt mean they know squat about the statistics and percentages of failures. And anyone saying its a 15% 25% 35% failure rate is just taking a guess unless they're getting numbers from SOA or any other legit source. Its just misleading to say otherwise.

Some of you guys in here crack me up.....saying a 140k HG failure is attributed to age and then turn around and say its a problem with hondas too. Im led to believe that since there's entire websites set up for this specific subaru problem, it's very likely a bigger problems for Subarus.


#32 coolhatdude


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Posted 26 January 2015 - 10:14 AM

Can anyone recommend a good independent shop or mechanic in the Syracuse NY area for head gasket replacement? I have a 2006 Outback with 179,000 miles that is starting to leak from head gaskets. I put a no pressure radiator cap on it and that bought me some time. Dealership wanted to fix every little thing that was not up to spec and quoted over four grand to fix it all. Included exhaust ( I had my mechanic fix it for much less), rear wheel bearings (replaced for much less), ball joints ( replaced much less ) and bushings for sway bars (ignored)


#33 idosubaru


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Posted 26 January 2015 - 10:32 AM

Could the mechanic that fixed your exhaust do the headgaskets?

We colud give him the pertainent information.


The key to that engine is:

1.  resurface the heads

2.  use the Subaru Turbo EJ25 headgasket i think the part number ends with 642, (crawlerdan and others are having good luck with Fel Pro), Six Star is a good option too.   


Do not vary from that if you want good 100,000 mile success.  That's always true for EJ25's and particularly true if you've been driving it with issues for a while - needing a cap and all.


CNY_Dave he's from up that way....he might have a suggestion

#34 wirelessenabled


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Posted 27 January 2015 - 12:29 AM

For what it is worth  ... and I have my anti-flame shield on.


My 2000 OBW with SOHC started to use about 2-3 ounces of coolant each tank of fuel at about 190K miles.  Also had the exhaust smell and black junk in the coolant reservoir and a slight sweet smell of burning coolant.  I continued to drive it because I was too busy to fix it.


Before having time to fix it I had to take a 1600 mile round trip.  Everything was fine until I was about 400 miles from home when it started to overheat.  I had to put coolant in about every 100 miles.  I got to my destination nearly 800 miles from home.  No place to work in the car and not really wanting to stop all the time on the way home.


A search brought up lots of "fixes" and I finally decided to put some liquid head gasket fix in the car with the idea of being able to get home and do a proper fix.  I used Bars Leak 1111 following the instructions on the $25 bottle exactly.  I drove it some before heading home replacing about a pint of coolant that disappeared.  I started the drive home, monitoring temps very carefully.  I stopped at about 100 miles and added 1-2 ounces of coolant.  Drove another 150-200 miles and again had to add maybe 2 ounces of coolant.  After that I didn't need to add any coolant until I got home. 


I continued driving the car and over the next month or so drove maybe another 1000 miles and added a few ounces of coolant.  Since then, last September, I have driven another 5K miles and have had no coolant loss and am now coming up on 200K miles on the car.  This was not what I expected.  I was fully prepared to replace the HG having done the HGs on my son's '00 OBW last Spring using Six Star replacements.


I will probably take the engine apart this Summer and do the HGs but using the Bars Leak 1111 bought me time to do the replacement on my own schedule.

#35 craigmcd


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Posted 27 January 2015 - 08:22 AM

In the first reply in this topic he mentions ccrengines.com. We purchased one of their engines in 2010, the engine is running perfectly and has a little over 49,000 miles on it. It had been back and forth between Colorado and NY a number of times with no problems. It never overheated.


The overall mileage is fairly low because my daughter has been a student living on a small campus, and not driven a lot on a daily basis.


Two weeks ago she rolled this 99 Outback into a snowy ditch - it is most likely going to be totaled.



#36 idosubaru


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Posted 27 January 2015 - 11:20 AM

Follow-up question: After replacing the EJ25 with a new head gasket set, how long do you expect it to last? Will the head gasket blow again in approx 100k mile due to the design of the engine? Or will other parts of the engine fail before the new head gasket fails again?


there's is no "how long". mileage varies.  generally speaking if done right you shouldnt' have to worry about it again.  i wouldnt' call them "bullet proof" but here is what i think you're after - repeat failures are low percentage.  start with a KNOWN GOOD BLOCK and do the job right and you shouldnt' have to worry about it again.   EJ25's...I'm not sure of their ability to routinely go 150,000 miles without issues, i'd be suspect of them but don't have a large enough experience base to really comment, though i've never personally seen a repeat failure.


CCR - are you still out there emily...shawn...i wonder if EJ25D's have more long term issues than later EJ25's?


are you starting with an impeccable block that's never been overheated and was well maintained....most people can't verify that on a car/engine driven previously by someone else. 


depends on the job.  cheap ebay gaskets and no resurface on an EJ25D - that will fail for sure, mileage will vary. 

resurface the heads and the block, use EJ25 turbo gasket or Six Star on an EJ251 - and you'll never have to do them again.


1. resurface the heads

2. use 610 Subaru gasket on EJ25D and Subaru EJ25 turbo or Six Star on later EJ25's


should be good to go. the EJ25D is the most likely of the various Ej25's to have repeat failures.

Edited by grossgary, 27 January 2015 - 11:21 AM.

#37 roadsubiedog


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Posted 27 January 2015 - 07:44 PM

replaced mine on 99 OB at 180k and since have gone 93k since repair.


happy bout that. changed oil every 2500-3000 miles.

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