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2005 Forester, XT 4EAT
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well, after much shopping, I found a 05XT, 86,000 miles, one owner, oil changed every 4k miles, and all services at the dealer. Took it for a test drive. Drives great, handles well, new tires, fluids clean, no leaks, etc. I bought it at a used car dealer, but 210 miles later when I got it home, it was pint of oil low? It doesn't smoke, or smell of oil burning. I plan on removing the banjo bolt screens, and changing the oil with Shell T6. My local dealer will do a compression/leak test for $189. Should I go for it? :icon_confused: Any other ideas?
 

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2001 Forester 4EAT
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842 Posts
Since they're never really a bad idea, I'd pay that for a comp/leak down on a suby (they're somewhat of a PITA on our cars).

Did you check the level before you left the dealer? I've found oil levels fluctuate on my turbo Suby's depending upon how/when checked so I try to be consistent when/where checking it. I've gotten the most consistent results by waiting 20 minutes or so after shutting it down and then checking 3 times. This way the oil has had time to work its way down into the oil pan but is still warm and "expanded".

That being said, most people see a little consumption on the EJ255. A few don't, but some is nothing to worry about. I use about 3/4qt in 4000 miles on synthetic (currently at 183K miles on the original long block-knock on wood). Subaru's rule of thumb is up to 1 qt/1000 miles of consumption. But it seems most people feel this is a bit high to be considered normal.
 

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2005 Forester, XT 4EAT
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I checked it before I left the dealer, and 3 times at home. Right after running, 5 min, and overnight. I had to add a little over a pt. Not sure of the oil in it.
 

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2004 Forester XT 5MT
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511 Posts
Change the oil. Try to not mix the oil, as you don't know whats in it. Change the oil and keep your eye on it. When I changed my oil brand I went to T5 first as a synthetic blend, then to T6. I saw about a quart usage with the first oil change to T5 and about a quart to the T6. I am on my 3rd oil change on the T6 and have lost less than 1/4 of a quart. My engine has 166k on factory longblock.
 

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2012 XT Touring 4EAT
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Well, after much shopping, I found a 05XT, 86,000 miles, one owner, oil changed every 4k miles, and all services at the dealer. Took it for a test drive. Drives great, handles well, new tires, fluids clean, no leaks, etc. I bought it at a used car dealer, but 210 miles later when I got it home, it was pint of oil low? It doesn't smoke, or smell of oil burning. I plan on removing the banjo bolt screens, and changing the oil with Shell T6. My local dealer will do a compression/leak test for $189. Should I go for it? :icon_confused: Any other ideas?
Compression tests are always a good idea, but it may (or may not) give you any clues on oil usage. Vehicles with great compression can still use oil - sometimes quite a bit.

Your vehicle can use oil in a few different of ways - past the rings, leaking head gasket, or leaking onto the ground. Your job is to figure out which. To aid in this task, you might consider removing the under-vehicle cover. IMHO, it's a PITA anyway, but some forum members like it. But, in your specific situation, you really need to have quick and continuous access to the complete under-engine area.

Get organized: Change the oil to whatever brand/grade you plan to use. Change the filter. Check that the drain plug is not leaking. Carefully clean the underside of the vehicle with paper towels or whatever, so any new leakage will be visible.

While under the vehicle, look around the filter area for leaks. Subarus tend to be 'leaky' and the oil cooler sealing ring is a likely leak candidate. It's a cheap enough part - sort of a nuisance to replace - but do-able. Also, look for any other leaking under the vehicle. If you park in a garage, put down newspapers so you can detect any dripping.

Be consistent: Check your oil the same way each time. For example, you drive in with the vehicle hot. Stop the engine, pop the hood, wait 5 minutes and check the oil. Or, you could check it stone cold. Exactly how you do it is probably less important than just being consistent.

Check your coolant: If the head gasket is leaking internally, you might have combustion gasses or oil in the coolant. Serious problem - a new head gasket is really the only fix. I would not rely on stop-leak additives for this issue.

Check your engine seals: Sometimes they leak. A possible fix is 'high mileage' oil (which has seal expanding additives) or else some proprietary additive that causes seals to swell. When you schedule the 105k timing belt service, be sure engine and cam seals are on the menu.

Rings: If your rings are passing oil, you could 1) simply live with it or 2) mark your calendar for an engine rebuild or 3) explore additives like molybdenum disulfide which should reduce oil loss past the rings (and may confer some other benefits). Of these choice, simply living with the usage is by far the easiest and probably the cheapest. MoS2 products like LiquiMoly are worth exploring - but it will take a few hundred miles or more for it to really start working.

Finally, be rational about this problem. Subaru says 1 quart per 1k miles is okay. If you change your oil every 3,000 miles, that's 2 extra quarts of oil added per oil change - not really the end of the world. If you feed your vehicle on MoS2 and reduce this usage to 1 quart per oil change, that savings will pay for the MoS2 (and you'll get a warm feeling and you can join the MoS2 club on BITOG ;-)
 

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2016 Ford RS & 2019 Subaru Descent
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How hard was the car driven over the 210 miles?

My FXT has similar miles to yours (85,000). Wife primarily drives the car and we see zero oil usage. When I use the car for a couple hundred miles, I notice a bit of oil usage. Admittedly, I drive the car a bit hard. Vehicle has done this as long as I can remember; I am original owner.
 

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2005 Forester, XT 4EAT
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I drove it on the expressway at 72mph for 40 miles then about 62 mph for the rest of the trip. Some of the expressway was a lot of stop and go for construction. Averaged about 22.5 mpg.
 

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2004 XT 5 MT
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good advice was given to check the oil the same way. i personally only check the fozz oil in the morning before the car has been started. Aside from that in my experience if I check it any other time it reads low. I add oil and it ends up overfilled.
 

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2005 Forester, XT 4EAT
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I had my compression, and leak down test today. #1- 125psi, #2- 130psi, #3 130psi, and #4 127psi. The leak down #1- 2psi exh leak, #2 1psi exh leak, #3 0psi, #4 1psi exh leak. He said both valve covers are leaking on the exhaust. That's why I smell burning oil. They said $389.00 to replace them. It seems that many people here have done their own. These numbers look good to me, but I don't know much about a leak down test.
 

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2006 2.5XT 5 SP Man
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I would say the compression figures are fine.

I'm getting the same problem as you at the moment , using a fair bit of oil but no smoke or leaks. Next service I will have it compression checked. If ok I will just put up with it
 

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2006 Forester XT Limited 5MT
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230 Posts
Using the same oil every change will help eliminate one of the variables. Some oils burn off faster than others. Also, if it's driven past it's oil change due date it will burn off faster from that point.

No one has brought up the pcv valve. Barring anything wrong with the motor, the pcv is usually the culprit as it can get stuck closed (pressurizing the crankcase, not good) or open which allows oil to be sucked into the intake.

I burned 3 quarts in a month (had swapped to another oil) and replaced the pcv valve ($25 part). You take off the throttle body, unscrew the old and screw in the new, easy peasy.

Switched back to castrol synthetic 5w30 with a new crush washer (avoids drain plug leaks) and new purolator filter and oil consumption is gone.

P
 

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2006 Forester XT Limited 5MT
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Is there a how to in the Pcv change???
Haynes manual should spell it out, but it's very easy.
I found a link by searching here: http://www.subaruforester.org/vbull...x-avo-turbo-kit-70917/index11.html#post867190

I'd recommend shooting it with some penetrating oil before hand as they can be on tight (and you don't want it snapping off).
http://www.subaruforester.org/vbulletin/f66/trick-removing-pcv-valve-80853/#post894333

the PCV valve is a little metal valve that one end screws into the engine block (located slightly left under the throttle body) and the other is clamped on a crankase vent hose. You can't install this backwards because of the threaded end. When you have it off it should rattle when you shake it indicating it works or doesn't if it has trouble freely rattling. Some people have successfully cleaned their old ones with a liberal dousing of brake fluid, but a new one is cheap and you know the spring isn't fatiged.

It should take all of 15~20 minutes to do yourself.

Step 1: Remove throttle body (allows easy access to the pcv)...You might be able to do it without removing the throttle body, but this is how my mechanic does it and I suppose it's the fastest way. -others feel free to chime in.

Step 2: disconnect pcv, unscrew from block.
Step 3: install new pcv valve (get a replacement from the dealer) in opposite order as above.

Phil
 

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2009 Fozzie XT Ltd 4EAT
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553 Posts
the pcv systems stink in our cars

consider putting in an aos
 
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