I'm in the process of deciding what to do about my head gaskets. I have a 2009 Forester X with just 83,000 miles on it, but both head gaskets started seeping oil at the same time a couple weeks ago. The oil seepage was minimal and I wasn't leaking or losing coolant, so I continued driving (but checking the coolant daily). I was doing my coolant check one day, and my stomach dropped as I discovered my coolant reservoir was about 4-5 inches lower than it had been just 24 hours before. I jacked my beloved subie up, heart in throat, and saw this:
So here are my questions:
1) The second photo (looking up at cylinder 4) is definitely leaking coolant, right? I don't know what else it could be but I'm pretty new to Subarus (purchased ~25k miles ago) so I figured I'd get confirmation before pulling the engine.
2) Does the failure of the head gasket in the back of the engine spell serious trouble? It's my understanding that Subaru head gaskets almost always fail on the bottom side. This makes sense, as that's where the coolant and oil will sit due to gravity, eroding the gasket over time. So why has mine seemed to fail so high up, level with the EGR pipe (as in 1st photo, and below)?? I'm worried that this unusual failure point means there is some serious cause that a (relatively) simple head machining and gasket replacement won't fix. Please advise!
Thanks so much for reading!
^ looking in from the Driver side wheel well at the back of the engine. EGR pipe in middle, cam plug in upper left corner for reference points.