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Hello. So, I Just Bought, A 98' Subi Leg. Outback. 165k Miles. Black Ext., Black Leather Int., Pwr W/D, Heated Seats, So On.

So To Start Off... I've Owned, 4 Old Gen Subis, 1.8L', First Time Owning The 2.5 DOHC... Purchased it in Portland, Or. Drove it to Salem, Or. No Issues. Drove To Work Next 4 Days, Which Is Only 12m Hwy Majority. It Puts Out Heat, Drives Smooth, Until The Last Mile, Into Work. (Roll Up Steaming!) Climbs, And Stays. Other Times, It Climbs- Burps- Drops- Repeat.

The Oil Was Like Vegetable Oil. Visc. Chattering Lifters, And Just No Good. Figured That May Be AN issue with it overheating. Solved That. I Am Leaning Towards Head Gasket(?) Or/and Bad Thermostat(?) Currently Stuck At Rest Stop On I-5 And I Cant Even Get Heat, Out Of Heater. Water In, Boils Out, (Or Gets Pushed Out?) I Was Supposed to Be At Work, In 5 Hrs. Which Ain't Happening.

Any Info, Ideas, Quick Fixes, Etc? --Oh-- And Radiator Top Neck Spout, Broke So, Neck Is Only About, 3/4" Long. Fighting Getting A Tight Connection With No Blazing Steam...

Thanks, And Hope For Some Advice/Good News! Lol

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Head gaskets are blown. Classic symptoms. That's just what this engine does because the gaskets were too thick. 

Replace the pistons with 00 - 04 EJ251 pistons. Use 770 STI head gaskets. Check the block for fire ring pitting. Resurface heads, etc. 

And get a new radiator and hoses. 

Definitely isn't worth fixing - being a 98 that needs $3,000 in work. You can do it yourself of course but it's way outside of the value of the car for sure. Could also put a 2.2 in it if you can find a decent one but they are all 22+ years old now. Mostly junk. 


Edited by GeneralDisorder

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FWD light would indicate that there’s a fuse installed in the holder to disable drive to the rear. This could be an issue with the solenoid that controls oil pressure to the plates that pass on the drive to the rear end (from my understanding of auto boxes). 

GD knows what he’s on about. Sounds like you purchased someone else’s problems :(  

All the best with it. 


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