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Hi,  I had catalytic converter parts replaced on 2002 outback. Mechanic
says my car is configured for CA emissions.  I bought the car from an individual
in VA and I live in MD.  Can I find out from the VIN if this is true?  He says
there are more (4) converter parts than regular emissions, 2 at the front of the
"Y" pipe (each end replaced last year) and 2 between that & resonator just
replaced now.  $1000+ each time.  I can't find any info about these front ones
replaced last year or any solid info about how much the parts & labor should
cost.  They said 2 hrs.  I'm very upset.  This guy I trusted for years but
apparently didn't take good care of it, this past spring told me I was good to
go for long trip but the heads blew up, $4000 to repair in VT and 3 different
mechanics told me it was a mess under there, other issues & services not
done properly, another $1000.  I found new mechanic.  With converter codes this
time but he recommended I take it back to the other guy in case converter was
under warranty.  I didn't know about the CA emissions or that he hadn't really
replaced the normal converter last year.  Thank you so much for your help! With
$6000 in it this year, it has to last me a couple more years!

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There's a writeup around here somewhere on how to do a free vehicle history search. It may give you the answers (If the car came from CA or maybe NY) I also will sometimes look up specific parts on RockAuto. It will specify whether it's CA specific or not. Usually CA and NY are the two that have stricter emissions requirements.

 

The head gaskets on these motors were generally pretty weak, but it sounds like you've got that covered. As long as the car wasn't overheated when the heads blew and it was repaired correctly, it should last you a while.

 

My wife has a 2000 Outback. Same motor as yours and she took it to work this morning with 331,000 on the clock.

 

Sorry to hear that you're sorting out a pile of issues with this car, but if you treat it well, it will last and last.

 

Also- welcome to the forum! There are answers to any subaru related question with the combined knowledge on here. Half the reason I drive subarus is because i know i can find out how to fix anything by coming here with my questions.

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Welcome to the USMB.

 

If you want to post or PM me your VIN I can look it up in the Subaru parts book and provide you with some info on the car.

 

I am going to move your thread to the new gen forum.  There's usually more traffic there.

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The emission sticker under the hood should say either CA (50 states) or Federal (49 states).  It shouldn't make a differance if the converter is for federal and put on a CA car.  

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Thanks all.  I bought the car in 2008 w/ 60k mi.  Guy had all the maint receipts, believe he bought in VA.  Nothing on the carfax.  Mechanic says last year when he replace the Y pipe I guess he got the federal one but said it wouldn't fit till he figured out it was CA emissions and got the right part.  This time he just got the CA part.  Last years part # 44139AE12A, this time it was 44???AB??A I don't remember but the receipt says 313101. First part was 890.42, this part 784.90.  both parts 2 hrs. each labor.  Something seems fishy to me.   Josh, I sent you the VIN via your website link.  Thanks!

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Oh it has 190k now.  In April, I was on a long trip, had this mechanic check it, said it was good, it overheated big time, had to leave it in VT for repair and go back to get it 3 weeks later.  Got both heads, gasket, water pump, timing belt, radiator, some other little stuff.

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