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Old 02-26-2007, 08:17 PM   #1
bc_1981
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Question 2.5 head gasket

So here's the story....

My girlfriend buys a used '01 Forester in the fall and she took it to Subaru (Barrie) for an oil change and they tell her that she needs a head gasket replaced. But here's my problem; a buddy of mine took his '03 forester to the same dealer and they said the same thing. I haven't gotten a second opinion yet.

Common problem or possible scam?
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Old 02-26-2007, 08:22 PM   #2
Mike1967
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bc_1981 View Post

Common problem or possible scam?
Yes and Yes

If it is not overheating...or losing coolant....or blowing dark smoke....and it is running fine......then tell them "thanks, but no thanks on the head gasket"
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Old 02-26-2007, 08:24 PM   #3
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I would be curious to know what price they quote for replacing the headgaskets.
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Old 02-26-2007, 08:42 PM   #4
bc_1981
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Everything seems to be fine. I've checked the driveway several times, it's not losing any fluids..

And they quoted the job at just under $2000 CAN. That's for the head gasket, timing belt and a couple other little things they suggested.
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Old 02-26-2007, 08:49 PM   #5
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Also they are building a new dealership and I can't help but think that this is a way to help pay for it.......ripping people off that is (more than usual anyway).
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Old 02-26-2007, 09:31 PM   #6
Tim Sanderson
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For that kind of money you could buy all the tools needed, the service manual, and the parts. And when your done you would still have money left over.
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Old 02-26-2007, 10:21 PM   #7
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Some piss poor suggestions and comments in this thread...

No its not a scam, yes headgaskets on the EJ25's really do fail that often. Its not a "scam" by dealerships, just a poor design on Subaru's part.

However, depending on the condition, and whether its leaking coolant or oil and how much its leaking, yes you can drive on it awhile. If its spewing oil or coolant or mixing the oil and coolant in the engine, or the coolant and oil levels are getting lower on a regular basis, definatly get them done ASAP. But you need to find out exactly what the diagnosis was and how bad the gaskets were (usually they say its leaking 3/5 or something like that, to indicate how bad the leak is, and whether its leaking coolant or oil) and go from there.

Headgaskets are not an easy job, and yes dealers do get money off of them but they also take A LOT of time and can back up a shop VERY quickly if you get a few in at a time...
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Old 02-26-2007, 10:55 PM   #8
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I have had my 2.5 '00 head gasket changed twice. External leak. On the drivers side, look at the rear of the engine real good with a light. Also, take the front left wheel off and inspect from that vantage point, looking where coolant would drip off the rear of the engine and drip on the drive shaft. Warranty might cover this work, did on mine, twice.
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Old 02-26-2007, 10:59 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kleinkid View Post
Warranty might cover this work, did on mine, twice.
Indeed. And If you have the coolant campain performed, it extends the warranty to like 8yrs/100k miles for the headgaskets. Although only for external oil leaks I believe (or is it coolant? Im not sure, ill check)...
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Old 02-27-2007, 04:14 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bc_1981 View Post
Common problem or possible scam?
get a second opinion for sure.

oh and hi everyone, im hippie
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Old 02-27-2007, 12:25 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kostamojen View Post
However, depending on the condition, and whether its leaking coolant or oil and how much its leaking, yes you can drive on it awhile.
Ditto. I've gone roughly 20k with a head gasket dribbling out a bit of coolant.
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Old 02-27-2007, 12:32 PM   #12
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i am second owner of 2001 outback; purchased 12/06; i recently noticed odor of anti-freeze; 97+ miles; original owner performed all necessary maintenance with dealer; if this is a head gasket problem, will i be covered under the warranty to 100,000 miles??? thanks for your help
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Old 02-27-2007, 01:17 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by emmalu View Post
i recently noticed odor of anti-freeze
That could be anything...

If you are not very good at diagnosing things like this on your own, your best bet is to take it somewhere experienced with Subarus to diagnose it (Dealer or a local Subaru specialist, whichever you prefere)
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Old 02-27-2007, 06:09 PM   #14
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I work at Barrie Subaru (Sales Manager) and can assure you that we do not scam our customers. Go for a second opinion if you like but our guys are just letting you know before you are on the side of the road with a blown gasket or worse. Maybe it is just a minor leak but if they didn't say anything and you came back a week later with it pouring you'd be pissed they never at least took the time to consult you.
Yes we are building a new dealership to help serve you better. To think we are scamming, I am sorry you feel that way and don't have any trust. Maybe we have to work harder at gaining your trust. Ask for Guido our service manager if you need clarification or want to know more details.
Subaru has a known issue with HG's and we do at least 1-2 engine jobs a week.
Better to spend the money before it is even more costly to your GF. It's up to you it's your car but headgaskets on a 2.5L NA engine are part of the maintenance program. Anywhere between 80K-200K they will go.
Search if you don't believe me. If I can be of any help please call me at the dealership.
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Old 02-27-2007, 06:15 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kostamojen View Post
Indeed. And If you have the coolant campain performed, it extends the warranty to like 8yrs/100k miles for the headgaskets. Although only for external oil leaks I believe (or is it coolant? Im not sure, ill check)...
In Canada there is no such goodwill warranty extension on HG's. SOC and SOA are separate companies and have different warranty policies Sorry.
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Old 02-27-2007, 06:26 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kostamojen View Post
Indeed. And If you have the coolant campain performed, it extends the warranty to like 8yrs/100k miles for the headgaskets. Although only for external oil leaks I believe (or is it coolant? Im not sure, ill check)...
it's for internal coolant leak (though they may let an external one slide as covered)
mine was leaking oil externally & they denied the claim stating what i put above.
no coolant leaky no coverage....
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Old 02-27-2007, 07:02 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rickG888 View Post
In Canada there is no such goodwill warranty extension on HG's. SOC and SOA are separate companies and have different warranty policies Sorry.
Missed that part, sorry.
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Old 02-27-2007, 07:35 PM   #18
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What mods could void that warranty?
'Cause recently I've had a small leak, very coolant smelling, dripping looks like right before the header meets the cat section... this is gonna suck isn't it?
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Old 02-28-2007, 01:50 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bc_1981 View Post
Everything seems to be fine. I've checked the driveway several times, it's not losing any fluids..

And they quoted the job at just under $2000 CAN. That's for the head gasket, timing belt and a couple other little things they suggested.
How many miles are on this car?

Definitely get a second opinion and some competitive quotes. $ 2,000 is a significant investment.

Also, get a quote from them on parts and labor....and then shop the parts on the internet to get an idea of what their markup is. Also, share the quote data here. The forum is here for information sharing...and there are people here who can probably tell you what they paid for parts and also for labor.

I'm assuming they are at least wanting to do the headgaskets, timing belt and water pump.

I view $ 2,000 as a great deal for the shop. Anyone who has the tools and experience on these engines can knock this job out in a day. You are maybe talking $ 200 in parts costs.....so don't listen to any crap about how you are filling up their shop. $ 1,700 is pretty good pay for a days work..
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Old 02-28-2007, 09:41 AM   #20
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As far as GTA dealers go, Barrie Subaru is the most honest I have come across, Rick who replied earlier is a great guy, and tells it as it is.

Do get a second opinion at another dealer though, OR go back to see Rick at Barrie Subaru, and ask to see the leak, I am sure they will show you, and explain the risks.

Good luck.
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Old 02-28-2007, 12:33 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike1967 View Post
Anyone who has the tools and experience on these engines can knock this job out in a day.
It takes at least two days for both headgaskets. Shop techs dont work non-stop all day... Its possible to do one side in a day, but not both including removing/reinstalling the engine and properly setting everything and cylcing the engine.

And yes, if its an external leak, get your ass under the car with a flashlight and look at it yourself if you dont believe them.
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Old 02-28-2007, 02:32 PM   #22
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most tech I have seen prefer to remove the engine from the car when doing both headgaskets.
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Old 02-28-2007, 03:12 PM   #23
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An experience tech should be able to pull these engines within 2 hours easy.
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Old 02-28-2007, 03:19 PM   #24
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Provide a breakdown of time required for each major step (i.e. pulling engine, removing timing belt, camcaps and heads, installing headgaskets, putting heads and cams/seals back together, resetting the timing belt, cycling the engine.

Also, give me a breakdown of the parts and the costs.

Maybe I am wrong on the costs....but I would like to see how you get to $ 2,000 on this job.

I would expect that the addition of the timing belt would only be the cost of the belt. There is zero additional labor on a timing belt because all of the labor is already being done on the headgasket replacement. The only difference being that you are putting on a new belt instead of the old one.
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Old 02-28-2007, 03:20 PM   #25
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Also, what is the shop labor rate?
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