('03-'05) oil filter adapter leak - Subaru Forester Owners Forum
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post #1 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-21-2012, 02:47 PM Thread Starter
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oil filter adapter leak

there is a minor but persistent leak from the oil filter adapter on my 2003 2.5x and i have 2 questions, is this a common area for leakage AND are there any subaru specific tools i'll need to repair this leak? i havent gotten around to getting a manual yet. i've been wrenching since the late 70's and owned my own European/British/pre 1978 Japanese motorcycle shop before breaking my neck and back so i do know what to do, i just didnt want to get partway into this job to find i need a specific tool since this is my only running transportation until spring when i put the T500 back together. i'm not showing a drop in oil level 2000 miles after the oil change i just dislike the smell of oil burning on a hot exhaust.
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post #2 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-21-2012, 03:02 PM
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I'm assuming you're talking about the oil cooler?

Usually it just requires a new O ring. You'll need to have a pinch-off tool to prevent the coolant from draining out when the hoses are removed, but other than that, it a pretty easy DIY repair.

Bobby...

['07 FSXT MODding Journal] ['03 X MODding Journal]

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post #3 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-21-2012, 03:04 PM Thread Starter
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lol yeah, the oil cooler adapter. thanks. i just HATE leaks and this car is spotless underneath except for this.
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post #4 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-21-2012, 03:09 PM
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I also have a very low tolerence for leaks on my vehicles.

When you have the oil filter off, you can see the nut that will need to be removed. Unless you drained the coolant, you'll want to pinch the hoses.

Bobby...

['07 FSXT MODding Journal] ['03 X MODding Journal]

'07 FSXT - COBB Surgeline dyno Protune - Stage 1+
'03 X +AVO turbo kit = XT (son's)
'95 Neon Sport
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post #5 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-21-2012, 03:18 PM Thread Starter
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my 94 Saturn SW1 that this 2003 Forester replaced had nearly 700k miles on it before it started leaking from anywhere but the valve cover gasket, which got replaced every 60-65k. that slight leak from the timing cover ate at me until i sold the car with 762k on it this past August. do ALL foresters have the oil coolers? i honestly dont remember seeing lines coming off of there. mine has the 4 speed automatic
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post #6 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-21-2012, 04:59 PM
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Looks like the SF & SG has the oil cooler & I'm going to guess the SH has one.

Bobby...

Here's a picture that shows how it goes together.

['07 FSXT MODding Journal] ['03 X MODding Journal]

'07 FSXT - COBB Surgeline dyno Protune - Stage 1+
'03 X +AVO turbo kit = XT (son's)
'95 Neon Sport
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post #7 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-21-2012, 06:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2.5x_sleeper View Post
Looks like the SF & SG has the oil cooler & I'm going to guess the SH has one.

Bobby...

Here's a picture that shows how it goes together.

['07 FSXT MODding Journal] ['03 X MODding Journal]
They are only present on automatics from 98-08. They were dropped in 09+. No clue why they had em...
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post #8 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-21-2012, 07:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Loscaldazar View Post
They are only present on automatics from 98-08. They were dropped in 09+. No clue why they had em...
The Miss's '08 base 4EAT = no cooler.

His - 08 X Prem 5mt
Hers - 08 X 4EAT
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post #9 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-21-2012, 07:54 PM
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Just did this. No need to disconnect or crimp hoses. Just remove bolt #13 in the diagram and the whole cooler assembly will hang down nicely where you can access the the "O" ring. It's a cheap and easy way to fix a big oil leak, most satisfying
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post #10 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-22-2012, 09:36 AM
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They are only present on automatics from 98-08. They were dropped in 09+. No clue why they had em...
My quick search on opposedforces shows the oil cooler on the manual?

As to why they had them. It looks to be a means to quickly bring the oil up to temperature, then provide some oil cooling at the normal engine operating temperature.

Quote:
Originally Posted by flstffxe View Post
The Miss's '08 base 4EAT = no cooler.
This is curious... wonder what they did to retain the features of the oil cooler? Was it was retained on the '08 XT engine?

Quote:
Originally Posted by cnskate View Post
Just did this. No need to disconnect or crimp hoses. Just remove bolt #13 in the diagram and the whole cooler assembly will hang down nicely where you can access the the "O" ring. It's a cheap and easy way to fix a big oil leak, most satisfying
A Subaru tech, on another thread, suggested pinching off the coolant lines, but if the O-ring can be replaced with the coolant lines attached, that would simplify the repair!

Bobby...

['07 FSXT MODding Journal] ['03 X MODding Journal]

'07 FSXT - COBB Surgeline dyno Protune - Stage 1+
'03 X +AVO turbo kit = XT (son's)
'95 Neon Sport
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post #11 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-22-2012, 09:50 AM
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Yeah, I'm not sure what engines/trim packages the oil cooler came with.

The 09+ manuals having them is interesting.... Thought they only came on autos!
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post #12 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-22-2012, 11:50 AM
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I should add, not on my '08 Premium 5mt either.

I am OK with not having one. One more spot for fluids to leak.

And to confirm, yes you can remove the mounting bolt, dig the old gasket out and slide a new one it with out undoing all the hoses.

His - 08 X Prem 5mt
Hers - 08 X 4EAT
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post #13 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-23-2012, 05:01 PM Thread Starter
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it took all of 15 minutes to do the job. no more leaks! the next time i'm under the car will to be replace the cat pipe and mid pipe................as soon as i can save enough pennies to get the stainless stuff from Stromung.
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post #14 of 16 (permalink) Old 12-24-2012, 05:53 AM
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I need the PN for that Oring, do any of you have it? That diagram doesn't do much on that front and it wouldn't be a bad idea to have it in this thread for future reference anyway..

Thank you..
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post #15 of 16 (permalink) Old 04-13-2014, 01:49 PM
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For all of you saying you were able to do this without disconnecting the coolant hoses - yikes. I just replaced mine, and there was no way I was going to be able to get the o-ring out, I couldn't even feel it. Even once I removed the entire assembly it took a small pick & pry tool to get it out, it was smashed so far down into the groove (probably why it was leaking).

Anyway, I'm taking the opportunity to run a radiator flush.
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