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2012 Outback CVT
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My wife has a 2012 Outback that I really like, and now I am looking at a few different 2009-2010 Foresters for myself. Alll are in the 115-125K range and under $10,000 at a well-reviewed local dealer. Talking with the salesperson, he said the 105K timing belt service is performed, if it hasn’t already been completed, and head gaskets are checked, so he seemed to know his Subarus. I want to find out what kind of parts are used, who performs the repairs, and what kind of guarantee on parts and labor there is, but anything else I should inquire about? I will also look at the Carfax reports and all the usual caveats of buying used.

Any other advice/suggestions for that vintage of Forester? This will be replacing my recently totaled 4Runner after a driver turned left into me as I was going straight through a green light :( My hope with the Forester is to get most of the capability I desire with improved MPGs.

Thanks!
 

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Sahuarita, AZ 2018 Forester Limited
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You are wise to focus on the timing belt as that is a biggie at 105k miles. A good shop would also change the tensioner and pulleys as well as the water pump.

Fuel filter (in tank) is due every 60k so it would be due at 120k. Spark plugs (non-turbo), tranny fluid, diff fluids, brake fluid and cabin & engine air filters every 30k so those would also be due at 120k. Coolant is due at 137k (don't forget to add the Subaru Coolant Conditioner). All of the preceding are what's recommended in the owners manual.

One problem you might want to look out for is a collapsed driver's seat cushion. There were instances in 2009-2010 of a weld breaking on the driver's seat cushion frame which results in the seat cushion tipping to one side. Might also want to check the front control arm bushings for cracks as that is somewhat common too.
 

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2012 Outback CVT
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks ForesterBill! I’m in Tucson. Aside from the dealer, do you happen to know any local shops that focus on Subaru’s? The dealer has been good to my wife, just not terribly convenient location, so choices are always good.
 

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Sahuarita, AZ 2018 Forester Limited
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Jeffryscott, I've searched and searched and have never found an independent Subaru-only shop in the Tucson area. It's a bit inconvenient but I've used Subiworx in Tempe for some major services such as timing belt.

Fortunately I've found the service department at Tucson Subaru to be competent and somewhat reasonably priced for a dealer. They usually have "Service Special" coupons on their website that you can take advantage of including a 10% Mature Vehicle Discount coupon for vehicles over 100k miles. Two service advisors that I like there are Dan Ford and Jesse Friedman.
 

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I've never used them but there use to be a independent Subaru-only shop in Tucson known as Outback Motors. However, they are now known as Gibbs Automotive Service and they work on all brands of vehicles. If Gibbs retained any of Outback's mechanics it might be a good place for service.

If you happen to have a Honda too, I can recommend a great independent-only Honda shop in Tucson.
 
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