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Old 11-25-2005, 05:30 PM   #1
Scooby Newbie
Member#: 97855
Join Date: Oct 2005
Default Multiple questions

I ask because I am on the fence between repair or replace. I thought I'd ask the collective knowledge their thoughts and opinions. First the background, then the questions.

I have a 99 Outback sport with 122K miles.

My mechanic has recently informed me that I have an oil leak seemingly coming from the oil pump and am in need of a pump seal replacement, that because the CEL keeps coming on (I don't know the actual code # but it references catalytic efficiency) I am in need of a catalytic converter replacement, and for safety sake the front rotors need replacing after my brakes seized on me a short time ago (I don't know how...I just noticed that the car wasn't coasting at all and that the wheels were really hot...went to the mechanic who replaced the pads saying they were stuck...at the time he reported that the rotors were ok but the car now shakes on braking from 60+ down to about 40mph making me think he was wrong).

My experience with friends' subies and oil leaks is that they're dern near impossible to fix. Is this a problem with their mechanics or are they really that tough to fix? I've never run into a converter problem before. Insights?The brakes/rotors...well...that's a safety issue.

Total estimate for parts and labor so far is pushing $3000. Does this seem right? Too high/low? What are your experiences with similar type problems? Is it worth getting it fixed or is this the beginning of the end and I should start looking for a new car?

I'd rather not become indebted to a bank for monthly payments on a new car. But at the same time, I don't want to dump all that money into recurring problems either. If it can be fixed with a resonable expectation of another 120-150K or more before another problem arises I'll just get it fixed and continue to love this car.

Last thing (I swear)...I'm still on the original clutch. How much longer could this last before that'll need replacement, too? (I do mostly hwy miles but there is some solid city driving in there, too.)

Thanks, in advance, for your time and responses.

Peace and be safe.
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Old 11-25-2005, 06:07 PM   #2
Scooby Specialist
Member#: 9861
Join Date: Sep 2001
Chapter/Region: RMIC
Location: Colorado Springs, CO
1999 2.35 RS-T w/NOS
Hybrid Rally Blue Pearl


Ok, your mechanic is trying to rape you. $3000 for that stuff is rediculous. Parts and labor for a timing belt, water pump, front cranl seal and cam seals replacement should not exceed $1000 and that's if you do new idler pulleys and a new tensioner which are not required.Really it should run $700-800 max. The cat inefficiency code is more likely a bad downstream o2 sensor than it is a bad cat. If you don't care about it you can always get an MIL eliminator kit and have the ecu ignore the downstream o2 sensor. Oil leaks are not a problem if you know where they are coming from and replace the bad parts with factory parts. I've seen stock clutches go well over 200k and I've seen htem fail at 60k. No real way of knowing when it will go. The rotors are like $40 each at autozone, checker, etc. They can be changed along with the brake pads in like 30min/side if you're slow.
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