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Old 01-12-2018, 01:42 AM   #1
Turbo_CurboNY
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Member#: 480469
Join Date: Jan 2018
Default Buying car soon, HELP!

Hi, Im fairly new to Subarus in general and Im planning on purchasing one this upcoming week, its a 2002 wrx, and what are some things I should ask about the car? (Noob question I know, Im sorry) I just donít know what kind of questions to ask! Thanks!
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Old 01-12-2018, 07:26 AM   #2
Jack
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Join Date: Dec 2001
Chapter/Region: NESIC
Location: Hopkinton, MA
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not my president
(From General)

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The first thing to do is to arrange for a pre-purchase inspection with a Subaru specialist mechanic. Skip this and we'll just roll our eyes when your next post talks about a knocking in the engine or overheating after 20 minutes driving home.

Look for Unabomber's manifesto as he has a very good write up on car buying. Remember that this is an ancient car that needs to have records of the timing belt replaced and at this point, every hose and vacuum line in the car. Unless it's currently owned by an OCD maniac, you'll need to replace all fluids (coolant, brake fluid, clutch fluid, trans fluid, rear diff fluid, power steering, which is NOT power steering fluid) and although you can check and not replace, expect all filters and spark plugs to be due. The easy stuff like brakes can be checked, but while you're checking, do the slides still slide? Ancient Subarus (like all antiques) tend to stick, which makes the brakes not work right. Do the caliper pistons move? This is all stuff that a PPI will check. It should take several hours and cost a few hundred dollars. Rust? Rear shock towers, lower control arms, sub frame mounting points are all known problems in these cars. Control arms are easy but rusted shock towers can mean "scrap the car".
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Old 01-12-2018, 07:53 AM   #3
rtv900
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It's 16 years old, so you can just verify it's not a nightmare vehicle and that you aren't paying more than $1500.
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Old 01-12-2018, 08:25 AM   #4
Ishbu0062
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Member#: 375051
Join Date: Dec 2013
Chapter/Region: MWSOC
Location: Greenwood, IN
Vehicle:
2016 WRX STi
WRB

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack View Post
The first thing to do is to arrange for a pre-purchase inspection with a Subaru specialist mechanic. Skip this and we'll just roll our eyes when your next post talks about a knocking in the engine or overheating after 20 minutes driving home.

Look for Unabomber's manifesto as he has a very good write up on car buying. Remember that this is an ancient car that needs to have records of the timing belt replaced and at this point, every hose and vacuum line in the car. Unless it's currently owned by an OCD maniac, you'll need to replace all fluids (coolant, brake fluid, clutch fluid, trans fluid, rear diff fluid, power steering, which is NOT power steering fluid) and although you can check and not replace, expect all filters and spark plugs to be due. The easy stuff like brakes can be checked, but while you're checking, do the slides still slide? Ancient Subarus (like all antiques) tend to stick, which makes the brakes not work right. Do the caliper pistons move? This is all stuff that a PPI will check. It should take several hours and cost a few hundred dollars. Rust? Rear shock towers, lower control arms, sub frame mounting points are all known problems in these cars. Control arms are easy but rusted shock towers can mean "scrap the car".

^^ THIS
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Old 01-12-2018, 11:36 AM   #5
Turbo_CurboNY
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Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jack View Post
The first thing to do is to arrange for a pre-purchase inspection with a Subaru specialist mechanic. Skip this and we'll just roll our eyes when your next post talks about a knocking in the engine or overheating after 20 minutes driving home.

Look for Unabomber's manifesto as he has a very good write up on car buying. Remember that this is an ancient car that needs to have records of the timing belt replaced and at this point, every hose and vacuum line in the car. Unless it's currently owned by an OCD maniac, you'll need to replace all fluids (coolant, brake fluid, clutch fluid, trans fluid, rear diff fluid, power steering, which is NOT power steering fluid) and although you can check and not replace, expect all filters and spark plugs to be due. The easy stuff like brakes can be checked, but while you're checking, do the slides still slide? Ancient Subarus (like all antiques) tend to stick, which makes the brakes not work right. Do the caliper pistons move? This is all stuff that a PPI will check. It should take several hours and cost a few hundred dollars. Rust? Rear shock towers, lower control arms, sub frame mounting points are all known problems in these cars. Control arms are easy but rusted shock towers can mean "scrap the car".


Thank you! Will do! The guy selling it has been a Subaru mechanic for 4 years, but Iíll probably still get it checked out before hand! Thanks again!
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Old 01-17-2018, 12:45 AM   #6
Mr.Darcy
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Chapter/Region: SCIC
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Vehicle:
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I brought my 2000 WRX on a whim without an inspection. Depending on the price of the car, sometimes you just have to bite the bullet as old cars will have problems and you just want to avoid a nightmare.
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Old 01-17-2018, 08:26 AM   #7
Samurai Jack
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Join Date: Jul 2002
Chapter/Region: NESIC
Location: Not in my own time
Vehicle:
2002 Enemy of Aku

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Turbo_CurboNY View Post
Thank you! Will do! The guy selling it has been a Subaru mechanic for 4 years, but Iíll probably still get it checked out before hand! Thanks again!
Honestly, this means nothing.
- How good of a mechanic was / is he?
- What is the reputation of the Dealership he works at?

You want someone unbiased to go over the car. Rightfully so, current owner is biased about his car. This doesn't mean he is trying to deceive you at all, but how would you know?

Does he have a complete list of Service Items and Parts on this car to give you, ie; maintenance records?
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Old 01-19-2018, 03:07 PM   #8
StocktonBomb
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Location: SoCal
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2017 STi
DGM

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Get compression and leak down tests done before buying.
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Old 01-19-2018, 04:10 PM   #9
lpxltt
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Join Date: Jul 2014
Chapter/Region: NESIC
Location: Almost Cape Cod, MA
Vehicle:
2007 OBS

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr.Darcy View Post
I brought my 2000 WRX on a whim without an inspection. Depending on the price of the car, sometimes you just have to bite the bullet as old cars will have problems and you just want to avoid a nightmare.
I take it you were not living in the US at the time?
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