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Looking at a 2000 Forester automatic with 144K on it. The owner is a friend who has had it for 50K miles. I have his records but there are no records of a timing belt change. When do timing belts need to be done on these cars, how much are they, and is there any way to determine if the prior owner di the timing belt?

Dave
 

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2018 2.5i Premium CVT
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Welcome from (used to live in) Columbia.

Timing belt interval is 105k miles. You can't tell anything about it without opening it up, and even then you couldn't be sure whether it's been changed.

See this sticky in the New Member Introductions Forum for a link to a suggested list of what to do as part of this job. It sounds like you ought to get onto this pretty quickly. This is the one piece of scheduled maintenance that can be instantly fatal to the Forester if not taken care of. Count on $1000 or so for the complete job.
 

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2008 Forester X Premium 5MT
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Due at 105K, so if he has had it since 94K and has not done it in his ownership I would say it is due.

All told to do the belt and related parts run about $500 @ dealer parts prices.
Common items are:
-timing belt
-water pump/ gasket
-timing belt tensioner assembly
-right timing belt idler (smooth)
-left lower timing belt idler (smooth)
-cogged timing belt idler
-two accessory drive belts
-front crankshaft seal
-two front camshaft seals
-thermostat/ gasket.
 
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