Jump to content
Ultimate Subaru Message Board

Recommended Posts

First off, hats off to a great forum!


I am a new user of this forum, and also in the process of acquiring my first Subaru.


I am considering several 1999 Outback's. It will be a first for me in the "used" market, and I am somewhat nervous about investing my hard earned cash.


I know this as probably been asked a thousand time on this forum (and please advice me if I should be redirected to another one), but what do I have to pay special attention to? I've read quite a lot of threads concerning the gasket heads already!


FYI: I am considering leasing a 99 Outback with 90 000 km's (I am in Canada!), new brakes, new Michelin tires, and some minor fixes done by dealer.


I have also found a 98 Outback with only 57 000 km's on it (but I am not totally convinced about the dealer!).


Thanks in advance for comments!



Aylmer, Québec

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites



Remember you'll hear more of the problems in this type of format and not necessarly all the positive. It's just the way these forums work.


I have a newer used Forester and I love it, I'm not worried a bit about the head gasket.


I'd have a qualifed mechanic look it over, it would be worth knowing what a professional says. Seems as though it would pay off the first time you had a problem (or avoided one per/your mechanic).


For what it's worth,


82 Hatch, transforming.......:temper:

01 Forester, jealous...........:madder:

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

And avoid the Stage I 2.5L 4 at all costs. The Stage II is the one without (or at least with fewer) head gasket issues. I think Outbacks and Legacies MY99 and up had the Stage II. I know the Foresters did.


Welcome to the board and good luck!

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

The Legacy did not get the 2.5L SOHC Phase II until model year 2000. Yes, I agree that forums like this one tend to over emphasize problems , BUT THERE SURE HAVE BEEN A LOT OF POSTERS WITH PHASE I HEAD GASKET FAILURES.


Further, there are a number of posters who are professional engine rebuilders or work for Subaru dealerships who are in a position to actually KNOW something about the true extent of the head gasket failure problem. They say there is a real problem with the Phase I engine, and the number of posts about Phase I gasket failures tend to back them up.

Further, some of these knowledgable posters say that there are an unexpected number of Phase II head gasket failures. Although the Phase II head gasket failure does not appear to be as serious or as frequent as the Phase I.

BTW, I drive a 99 Forester. No head gasket failure, so far. But the engine has extremely loud, ever present "piston slap".

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

What's a stage I and a stage II?


A certain friend of mine wants to know.......:wave:



82 Hatchbuggy........:temper:

01 Forester............:wave:

Share this post

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now