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Sandrion

Missed out on a 2003 Outback, found a 1997 Legacy Outback, I have ?

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I had a thread going asking about common 2003 Outback problems, would all of the answers I received apply to a 1997 Legacy Outback also?

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Mostly, but the 96-99 DOHC 2.5 engines have internal head gasket leaks that blow all the coolant out. 

 

Easy to check, look in the overflow bottle, any oil gunk stuff indicates the HG are leaking.  Ask if they were done.  

 

Most people never know they are overheating their engine until it stops working or the steam is coming out from under the hood.  

 

If it go to long, the bottom end is most likely junk and you either need to replace the engine or do a complete rebuild.

 

2.2 can be swapped in.

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Do the DOHC engines suck that bad? I perform all my own maintenance and I'm not scared to fix things, would an DOHC with 94K miles be an alright buy at $3000?

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Do the DOHC engines suck that bad? I perform all my own maintenance and I'm not scared to fix things, would an DOHC with 94K miles be an alright buy at $3000?

they suck enough to warrant looking at other engines instead.

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Do the DOHC engines suck that bad? I perform all my own maintenance and I'm not scared to fix things, would an DOHC with 94K miles be an alright buy at $3000?

If the rest of the car is absolutely perfect, yes. But be sure to ask if the engine has ever been overheated. The EJ25D does not hold up to overheating, and the end result is usually a rod through the top of the block.

If it has not been overheated, the EJ25D is fine. Though the first things on the list of preventative maintenance would be head gaskets, a valve adjustment, and a full timing kit. But if you have to pay a shop to do any of this, its going to be several thousand dollars of work, and would make it not worth the $3,000 price tag.

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The 2.5 DOHC motor in a '97 will blow its head gaskets at some time. I made it to 146K miles on a 98, and 190K miles on a 99 with the same engine.  If you are serious about the 97, ask about head gasket work already done on this car, and if so, ask for receipts showing that the work was done.

 

All '96-99 Legacys with the 2.5 motor have temperature gauges, but there is no dash warning light to alert the driver that the engine is over heating. If you don't keep an eye on the temp gauge, it is easy not to notice the motor over heating, and not realize it.

 

$3000, sounds a little high for a Subie in North Carolina, where you live. Maybe that is just the asking price. I am thinking the owner would take $2,000-$2,500 for the car.

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The 2.5 DOHC motor in a '97 will blow its head gaskets at some time. I made it to 146K miles on a 98, and 190K miles on a 99 with the same engine.  If you are serious about the 97, ask about head gasket work already done on this car, and if so, ask for receipts showing that the work was done.

 

All '96-99 Legacys with the 2.5 motor have temperature gauges, but there is no dash warning light to alert the driver that the engine is over heating. If you don't keep an eye on the temp gauge, it is easy not to notice the motor over heating, and not realize it.

 

$3000, sounds a little high for a Subie in North Carolina, where you live. Maybe that is just the asking price. I am thinking the owner would take $2,000-$2,500 for the car.

He was asking $4500 and I got him down to $3000. Im not buying this car after reading up on the DOHC, Im not that strapped for a vehicle, just wanting to get a good range of opinions. Thanks again.

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