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Old 06-02-2010, 10:37 PM   #1
Tirpitz56
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Member#: 77728
Join Date: Dec 2004
Chapter/Region: MAIC
Location: Woodbridge, VA.
Vehicle:
2001 Impreza RS
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Default Help on buying a used Legacy Outback. Head Gasket Help.

I am in the process of buying an Outback so we can have a wagon for the family and I have looked at like 20 of them so far. Half of them overheat on the test drive. I know all about the 2.5l phase 1 head gasket problems, but I have finally found one that looks like the head gaskets were replaced. I just want to make sure they are quality gaskets and not crap.

There are 2 pieces of blackish metal with a reddish material between them. I checked the coolant overflow tank and it has oil in it but it looks old and sludgy. So I am wondering if the previous owner had them changed and the mechanic forgot to clean out the overflow. What should an up to date head gasket look like for this engine. Is there anyway to check to see if it is still leaking while at the dealership? I test drove it and it doesn't overheat. Thanks for any help guys.
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Old 06-02-2010, 11:51 PM   #2
Luckyduck919
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First off, I am not an expert and do not claim to be. That being said:

That head gasket should be the newer MLS head gasket meaning that the car probably did have the original head gaskets replaced if the engine is in fact the EJ25D. But that doesn't mean whoever replaced them did the job right.

My brother owns a 1998 Legacy that had the head gaskets replaced with newer MLS ones but due to improper installation they still leaked to the cylinder.

If you get the chance, smell the coolant overflow tank. It will stink like exhaust if there is a leak between the combustion chamber and the coolant passages.
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Old 06-02-2010, 11:55 PM   #3
Tirpitz56
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Is it possible to see bubbling in the coolant tank or just the smell.
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Old 06-03-2010, 12:01 AM   #4
Luckyduck919
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From what I have read, yes, but I have never actually seen it. The smell on the other hand I have had the pleasure of smelling and it is unmistakable.
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