Welcome to the North American Subaru Impreza Owners Club Sunday October 21, 2018
Home Forums WikiNASIOC Products Store Modifications Upgrade Garage
NASIOC
Go Back   NASIOC > NASIOC Technical > Service & Maintenance

Welcome to NASIOC - The world's largest online community for Subaru enthusiasts!
Welcome to the NASIOC.com Subaru forum.

You are currently viewing our forum as a guest, which gives you limited access to view most discussions and access our other features. By joining our community, free of charge, you will have access to post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, upload content and access many other special features. Registration is free, fast and simple, so please join our community today!

If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact us.
* Registered users of the site do not see these ads. 
Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 04-18-2018, 02:37 PM   #1
subaru2010
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 484831
Join Date: Apr 2018
Chapter/Region: MAIC
Location: USA
Vehicle:
2010 Impreza 2.5

Default 2010 Subaru Impreza Valve Cover Gasket Replacement

Hello Subaru Experts and Enthusiasts:

I have a small oil leak on the ground where I park my subbie. Just a few drops it seems over night - not a big deal yet. However, replacing my spark plugs last weekend, I noticed oil in the spark well of cylinder 1. There's definitely a leak there. Not sure if there's a leak anywhere else. I still have more than half of my engine oil 2500 miles into my last oil change.

Question: Is there a definitive guide to changing / cleaning and reinstalling a new valve cover gasket for the 2010 Subbie Impreza 2.5?

I have found multiple youtube videos and some say pop the fuel fuse, and bleed the brakes. Some just go and do it. I'm not sure. Are there any other caveats?

I realize the parts I will need outside of sockets, and screw driver are an oil pan, brake cleaner?(part cleaner? any recommendations on brand/type?), paper towels to clean? A can of compressed air??(since I don't have electronic compressed air). Some say to lift the car up to get to bottom bolts, some say you don't have to.

Better to pay mechanic $275 to do it and drop it off a day?
* Registered users of the site do not see these ads.
subaru2010 is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
* Registered users of the site do not see these ads.
Old 04-19-2018, 08:06 PM   #2
Bikelok
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 254851
Join Date: Aug 2010
Chapter/Region: BAIC
Location: Nor-Cal Bay Area
Vehicle:
2002 WRX wagon 5mt
PSM

Default

Here is my write up. Itís not exactly the same car or engine but it should not be that different.

Valve cover gasket how to:
http://forums.nasioc.com/forums/show....php?t=2804427

Why would you need to bleed the brakes or pop the fuel fuse I have no idea. You should not need to touch either one of those things. If someone else can chime in stating otherwise, please do.

Again my write up is for a turbo EJ, which is not that different than your NA EJ.
Bikelok is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2018, 03:29 PM   #3
subaru2010
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 484831
Join Date: Apr 2018
Chapter/Region: MAIC
Location: USA
Vehicle:
2010 Impreza 2.5

Default Drain Oil First?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bikelok View Post
Here is my write up. Itís not exactly the same car or engine but it should not be that different.

Valve cover gasket how to:
http://forums.nasioc.com/forums/show....php?t=2804427

Why would you need to bleed the brakes or pop the fuel fuse I have no idea. You should not need to touch either one of those things. If someone else can chime in stating otherwise, please do.

Again my write up is for a turbo EJ, which is not that different than your NA EJ.
Hi BikeLok: I found your post and it motivates me to try it. At least I want to try to do one side at a time and do the other valve gasket covers another day. Did you drain the oil before opening it? I don't want to spill oil everywhere.
subaru2010 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2018, 06:26 PM   #4
Charlie-III
NASIOC Supporter
 
Member#: 30669
Join Date: Dec 2002
Chapter/Region: Tri-State
Location: USA, North NJ, 07456
Vehicle:
1998 Legacy 2.5GT
Silver Sleeper BK, 5MT

Default

You will lose a tiny bit of oil removing the valve covers, when done doing a side, run the engine, shut off, let sit for 10 minutes or so, check oil level.
Likely a shot glass or less loss UNLESS your drain backs are really clogged......then you have other really major issues.....
Charlie-III is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-20-2018, 07:00 PM   #5
Bikelok
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 254851
Join Date: Aug 2010
Chapter/Region: BAIC
Location: Nor-Cal Bay Area
Vehicle:
2002 WRX wagon 5mt
PSM

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Charlie-III View Post
You will lose a tiny bit of oil removing the valve covers, when done doing a side, run the engine, shut off, let sit for 10 minutes or so, check oil level.
Likely a shot glass or less loss UNLESS your drain backs are really clogged......then you have other really major issues.....


Quote:
Originally Posted by subaru2010 View Post
Hi BikeLok: I found your post and it motivates me to try it. At least I want to try to do one side at a time and do the other valve gasket covers another day. Did you drain the oil before opening it? I don't want to spill oil everywhere.


What Charlie III said, but itís definitely enough to make a good mess if you donít lay a tarp/pan bellow the work.

You donít have to drain the oil.

Take it slow, be methodical, donít force anything and it should go well. Usually the biggest issues are people going all gorilla on aluminum engine parts. Take it slow and careful.
Bikelok is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-24-2018, 09:52 AM   #6
subaru2010
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 484831
Join Date: Apr 2018
Chapter/Region: MAIC
Location: USA
Vehicle:
2010 Impreza 2.5

Default

I had a local mechanic take a look. He says its the head gasket that's leaking. Now I wonder if I even should bother with the valve gasket.
subaru2010 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-24-2018, 01:42 PM   #7
Charlie-III
NASIOC Supporter
 
Member#: 30669
Join Date: Dec 2002
Chapter/Region: Tri-State
Location: USA, North NJ, 07456
Vehicle:
1998 Legacy 2.5GT
Silver Sleeper BK, 5MT

Default

This is a time where I suggest getting a can or two of Gunk Foamy EngineBrite, warm up the engine, start from the bottom, foam everything (read the instructions......engine a bit warm, warm/hot water wash is good), soak, flush, drive, recheck. Keep speeds below about 40MPH (so airflow does not move leaks around much), let dry, drive up on ramps or jack it up.
Look for leaks.
If oil is basically fine and no real coolant loss, keep an eye on things and save money.
Top fluids as needed.
Charlie-III is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-24-2018, 08:28 PM   #8
Bikelok
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 254851
Join Date: Aug 2010
Chapter/Region: BAIC
Location: Nor-Cal Bay Area
Vehicle:
2002 WRX wagon 5mt
PSM

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Charlie-III View Post
This is a time where I suggest getting a can or two of Gunk Foamy EngineBrite, warm up the engine, start from the bottom, foam everything (read the instructions......engine a bit warm, warm/hot water wash is good), soak, flush, drive, recheck. Keep speeds below about 40MPH (so airflow does not move leaks around much), let dry, drive up on ramps or jack it up.
Look for leaks.
If oil is basically fine and no real coolant loss, keep an eye on things and save money.
Top fluids as needed.


Solid advice.
Bikelok is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-25-2018, 01:18 PM   #9
subaru2010
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 484831
Join Date: Apr 2018
Chapter/Region: MAIC
Location: USA
Vehicle:
2010 Impreza 2.5

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bikelok View Post
Solid advice.
Really, it's a free assessment from any indie shop or dealer. Why not just let the professionals look at it - appreciate the advice nonetheless.
subaru2010 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-25-2018, 02:48 PM   #10
MyGarageBuild
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 485164
Join Date: Apr 2018
Location: Vermont
Vehicle:
08 Impreza
DarkGrey

Default

I just spent a great deal of time chasing oil leaks on my Subaru...

I pulled the engine, did the head gaskets. Put it in, and it was leaking out of so many other places that I couldn't even see. I just started fixing them one by one.

I did the valve cover gaskets and the spark plug tube rubber grommets (those are what cause oil inside the spark plug tube) .

I had cam seals front and rear leaking on mine as well.

Did the oil pump while i was in there, and another timing kit (had done it 2 years ago, but had the whole thing apart)

I've still got a leak that is coming from the head which, I'm not going after...

I have talked to a number of mechanics and they all say head gaskets, even before looking at it. Most of the time they are right cause it's a common problem, but get a few opinions before deciding what to do.
MyGarageBuild is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-25-2018, 03:56 PM   #11
Charlie-III
NASIOC Supporter
 
Member#: 30669
Join Date: Dec 2002
Chapter/Region: Tri-State
Location: USA, North NJ, 07456
Vehicle:
1998 Legacy 2.5GT
Silver Sleeper BK, 5MT

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by subaru2010 View Post
Hi BikeLok: I found your post and it motivates me to try it. At least I want to try to do one side at a time and do the other valve gasket covers another day. Did you drain the oil before opening it? I don't want to spill oil everywhere.
Quote:
Originally Posted by subaru2010 View Post
I had a local mechanic take a look. He says its the head gasket that's leaking. Now I wonder if I even should bother with the valve gasket.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Charlie-III View Post
This is a time where I suggest getting a can or two of Gunk Foamy EngineBrite, warm up the engine, start from the bottom, foam everything (read the instructions......engine a bit warm, warm/hot water wash is good), soak, flush, drive, recheck. Keep speeds below about 40MPH (so airflow does not move leaks around much), let dry, drive up on ramps or jack it up.
Look for leaks.
If oil is basically fine and no real coolant loss, keep an eye on things and save money.
Top fluids as needed.
Quote:
Originally Posted by subaru2010 View Post
Really, it's a free assessment from any indie shop or dealer. Why not just let the professionals look at it - appreciate the advice nonetheless.
You seem like you want to tackle some work.
Unless everything is clean, it's a guess where the leak is.
Sheesh, you could look at it, but if everything is covered in oil and grime, anyone will be guessing on what is actually leaking.

The engine shampoo is maybe $7 locally. Do it when washing the car. Short low speed drive and check for yourself.
It's faster, more accurate and only about $7 plus your time.
Shop is likely time to get there, wait time, look time, still not really sure since you state fluids look pretty good. Thus a minor leak.
Note, if you shampoo yourself, get down the outside of the oil dipstick tube, the seal just before the pan can leak and it's hard to see.

Your car, your choice.
Charlie-III is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-25-2018, 04:18 PM   #12
ssssssantimonio
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 411867
Join Date: Jan 2015
Chapter/Region: E. Canada
Location: Winnipeg
Vehicle:
2011 Impreza 2.5i
WRB

Default

If youre past 100k miles and and drive pretty hard. I suggest you do everything. Headgaskets to oil seale front and back. As well as the oil separator plate.
ssssssantimonio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-25-2018, 08:38 PM   #13
Bikelok
Scooby Specialist
 
Member#: 254851
Join Date: Aug 2010
Chapter/Region: BAIC
Location: Nor-Cal Bay Area
Vehicle:
2002 WRX wagon 5mt
PSM

Default 2010 Subaru Impreza Valve Cover Gasket Replacement

Quote:
Originally Posted by subaru2010 View Post
Really, it's a free assessment from any indie shop or dealer. Why not just let the professionals look at it - appreciate the advice nonetheless.


Because sometimes they are wrong and often they just call head gaskets out almost as a reflex. Maybe it is, maybe not.

Head gaskets are $$$$$$$
Valve cover gaskets are $$

A little time and effort on your part can go a long way.

It doesnít hurt to have them look, but they might be wrong.
Bikelok is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-26-2018, 03:09 PM   #14
subaru2010
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 484831
Join Date: Apr 2018
Chapter/Region: MAIC
Location: USA
Vehicle:
2010 Impreza 2.5

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bikelok View Post
Because sometimes they are wrong and often they just call head gaskets out almost as a reflex. Maybe it is, maybe not.

Head gaskets are $$$$$$$
Valve cover gaskets are $$

A little time and effort on your part can go a long way.

It doesnít hurt to have them look, but they might be wrong.
I have never shambooed the bottom of the car engine. I am weary as to what to do and what not to do. I could wipe it with a paper towel, and maybe some brake cleaner. Even then, not sure what I am wiping.

I did want to try the valve cover gaskets, but it might be in vain since the leak really does not appear to be from the valve cover, unless it's under neath it.

There is oil in cylinder 1 spark plug well. I know the gaskets do need to be replaced.
subaru2010 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-26-2018, 03:26 PM   #15
ssssssantimonio
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 411867
Join Date: Jan 2015
Chapter/Region: E. Canada
Location: Winnipeg
Vehicle:
2011 Impreza 2.5i
WRB

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bikelok View Post
Because sometimes they are wrong and often they just call head gaskets out almost as a reflex. Maybe it is, maybe not.

Head gaskets are $$$$$$$
Valve cover gaskets are $$

A little time and effort on your part can go a long way.

It doesnít hurt to have them look, but they might be wrong.
Its a subaru with a sandwich engine. Meaning the chances of gaskets failing compared to inlines are doubled.

Yeah valve covers are $$$. HGs are $$$$$.

Unless youre doing it yourself (valve covers).

You might as well do the whole thing cause shops will insist on pulling your engine.

There should be lots of HGs for the turbos on your local ad.
ssssssantimonio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-27-2018, 10:14 AM   #16
Charlie-III
NASIOC Supporter
 
Member#: 30669
Join Date: Dec 2002
Chapter/Region: Tri-State
Location: USA, North NJ, 07456
Vehicle:
1998 Legacy 2.5GT
Silver Sleeper BK, 5MT

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by subaru2010 View Post
I have never shambooed the bottom of the car engine. I am weary as to what to do and what not to do. I could wipe it with a paper towel, and maybe some brake cleaner. Even then, not sure what I am wiping.

I did want to try the valve cover gaskets, but it might be in vain since the leak really does not appear to be from the valve cover, unless it's under neath it.

There is oil in cylinder 1 spark plug well. I know the gaskets do need to be replaced.
The bottom of the engine is pretty safe, get the front end up, spray everything (except the exhaust although you won't hurt it) underneath, let sit, then hose off.
If doing the top, try to keep cleaner out of the alternator and don't spray real hard on electrical connections. A moderate mist/low pressure stream is fine.

Remember, the engine gets splashed when driving normally, so a little wet here and there is fine.

Side note, I had a oil leak on wife's V6 Tiburon. Jacking it up, it REALLY looked like rust through on the pan. I sprayed engine shampoo from the top and the bottom of the engine and all the pan.
Rinsed off, then started the car to dry things off. Yes, the pan had some rust bubbles, the the end of the FILTER had a pinhole in it. As it ran I could see the oil come out slowly.
Driving the car forces air underneath. This turbulent airflow blew the oil all over.
The filter is horizontal on the passengers front corner of the engine not far from the pan.
Charlie-III is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-28-2018, 04:20 AM   #17
CosmoTheCat
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 3409
Join Date: Jan 2001
Chapter/Region: NWIC
Location: Oly
Vehicle:
98 My FMIC
Is bigger than yours.

Default

Take a picture of the bottom of your engine and post it. Get some light on it. If there's oil dripping from between the oil pan and exhaust, it's likely your head gasket. If your engine cross member isn't coated in oil, it may not be worth doing at this time.

I haven't ever been able to figure out Subaru's reasoning behind which vehicles get an oil cooler, but if you have one of those, they tend to leak too.
CosmoTheCat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 04-30-2018, 12:38 PM   #18
subaru2010
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 484831
Join Date: Apr 2018
Chapter/Region: MAIC
Location: USA
Vehicle:
2010 Impreza 2.5

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by CosmoTheCat View Post
Take a picture of the bottom of your engine and post it. Get some light on it. If there's oil dripping from between the oil pan and exhaust, it's likely your head gasket. If your engine cross member isn't coated in oil, it may not be worth doing at this time. I haven't ever been able to figure out Subaru's reasoning behind which vehicles get an oil cooler, but if you have one of those, they tend to leak too.
I took a few photos. Here's four of them, could not get the image to embed, so here's the links.

[IMG]https://ibb.co/dBfwWx[/IMG]
[IMG]https://ibb.co/ebuqrx[/IMG]
[IMG]https://ibb.co/k7Q24H[/IMG]
[IMG]https://ibb.co/gkDYBx[/IMG]

Last edited by subaru2010; 04-30-2018 at 03:11 PM. Reason: didn't take photo.
subaru2010 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-01-2018, 04:00 AM   #19
CosmoTheCat
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 3409
Join Date: Jan 2001
Chapter/Region: NWIC
Location: Oly
Vehicle:
98 My FMIC
Is bigger than yours.

Default

Ah that's driver's side, most likely the head gasket is dripping down, but I've seen way worse.
CosmoTheCat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-01-2018, 09:41 AM   #20
subaru2010
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 484831
Join Date: Apr 2018
Chapter/Region: MAIC
Location: USA
Vehicle:
2010 Impreza 2.5

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by CosmoTheCat View Post
Ah that's driver's side, most likely the head gasket is dripping down, but I've seen way worse.
No coolant mixture, no smoke, a slow leak, and car smells until it burns off exhaust (Guessing the cause).

I am very cautious, but don't want further issues. Looking at 1700-3000. Not a good time. Considering options.
subaru2010 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-01-2018, 04:31 PM   #21
CosmoTheCat
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 3409
Join Date: Jan 2001
Chapter/Region: NWIC
Location: Oly
Vehicle:
98 My FMIC
Is bigger than yours.

Default

Let it ride, start saving, and keep checking your oil and coolant levels.
CosmoTheCat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-01-2018, 08:59 PM   #22
Charlie-III
NASIOC Supporter
 
Member#: 30669
Join Date: Dec 2002
Chapter/Region: Tri-State
Location: USA, North NJ, 07456
Vehicle:
1998 Legacy 2.5GT
Silver Sleeper BK, 5MT

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by CosmoTheCat View Post
Ah that's driver's side, most likely the head gasket is dripping down, but I've seen way worse.
Quote:
Originally Posted by CosmoTheCat View Post
Let it ride, start saving, and keep checking your oil and coolant levels.
Sheesh, that amount, it's helping preserve the bottom of the car. You likely burn more oil than leak.
As CtC stated, keep an eye on fluid levels, top as needed, be happy.
Charlie-III is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-04-2018, 12:00 PM   #23
subaru2010
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 484831
Join Date: Apr 2018
Chapter/Region: MAIC
Location: USA
Vehicle:
2010 Impreza 2.5

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Charlie-III View Post
Sheesh, that amount, it's helping preserve the bottom of the car. You likely burn more oil than leak.
As CtC stated, keep an eye on fluid levels, top as needed, be happy.
I don't want the smell of burned carbon monoxide in the cabin affecting my family. I read it can cause lung cancer. I also don't want more problems such as a catalytic converter, or other issues.

When is it time to replace the car?
subaru2010 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-08-2018, 05:07 PM   #24
CosmoTheCat
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 3409
Join Date: Jan 2001
Chapter/Region: NWIC
Location: Oly
Vehicle:
98 My FMIC
Is bigger than yours.

Default

If it's an external leak, it's not going to ruin your converter. I'm not sure what the CO content is, but you're smelling hot oil/grease, not necessarily combustion.

Replace the car? Whenever you want. Personally I'd fix the gaskets if that's the extent of issues with it. At a dealership, with a timing belt service, you're looking at ballpark $2400, give or take. It's about $500-700 for parts if you do it yourself and look around for the price deals.
CosmoTheCat is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 05-09-2018, 04:17 PM   #25
subaru2010
Scooby Newbie
 
Member#: 484831
Join Date: Apr 2018
Chapter/Region: MAIC
Location: USA
Vehicle:
2010 Impreza 2.5

Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by CosmoTheCat View Post
If it's an external leak, it's not going to ruin your converter. I'm not sure what the CO content is, but you're smelling hot oil/grease, not necessarily combustion.

Replace the car? Whenever you want. Personally I'd fix the gaskets if that's the extent of issues with it. At a dealership, with a timing belt service, you're looking at ballpark $2400, give or take. It's about $500-700 for parts if you do it yourself and look around for the price deals.
I did take it to a Subaru dealership, but service wanted $3100 for the head gasket job. Then they wanted another $2000 for brakes/rotors/alignment and the rubber suspension parts.

I drove my car away.
subaru2010 is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

All times are GMT -4. The time now is 02:38 AM.


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.0
Copyright ©2000 - 2018, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Powered by Searchlight © 2018 Axivo Inc.
Copyright ©1999 - 2017, North American Subaru Impreza Owners Club, Inc.