Head gaskets are no longer a problem since 2011. Yes you could always have oil seepage but the HG won't fail because the cooling circuits are separated between the block and gasket.
Subarus may be considering the best made, best handling, best is snow, and safest since dinosaurs...BUT they are very complicated considering the drive train and horizontally opposed engines. In short the things that makes them superior makes them (IMHO) a bit more maintenance intensive.
If money is a real issue you might be best off avoiding an older subaru, simply because you don't know how it was treated. But to be fair you can say that for any AWD. A CRV is the most friggi 'n boring car on the planet but is a bit safer purchase bc it is less complicated and an inline 4 is very simple (and maintenance free). In short..you need to pay to play.
My 2008 cost me over the years $5000 in maintenance. But it now has 190+K miles on it. It should go another 50K but will require the timing belt and all associated partrs which is around a grand.
Many will disagree with me on this board..its just an opinion.
Oh I certainly agree. But when the HG's started to go and the vehicle had 120K miles on it It almost made economic sense to get rid of it. But my wife said it would not be right to even trade it in bc someone (like possible the OP) would struggle to pay for the repairs. But that happens in soooo many cases. Most people are not like my wife.:icon_wink:$500.00 a year for maintenance cost is roughly a single car payment.
Not too shabby if the vehicle has been generally reliable over the years.
I assume the FB has mls gaskets. I am not positive. But its not an issue in the FB engine bc like I said, the HG is not a coolant boundary.What’s the deal with the MLS Head Gaskets vs. the single layer ones? If you get it repaired and use a MLS gasket, is that a more permanent fix?