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2013 Forester2.5X Premium Automatic
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Discussion Starter #1
When I bought my 2013 Subaru Forester 2.5X Premium, I was given free full synthetic oil changes for life. Problem is the dealer is about 1-1/2 hours away and as the population grows, that's getting even longer here. And getting an appointment was like pulling teeth. So I started getting full synthetic oil changes at a local Valvoline Quick change place, costs some $$$ but better than 3-4 hours, gas and frustration. Their default is 3K miles on the sticker but when I was getting changes at the dealer it was 7K, so I always added 4K to the sticker mileage.

A couple months ago we were about to drive up to visit relatives about 750 miles away. Was about 4K since my oil change, was all packed and pulled the bone dry dip stick. Ran to the store and took about 2-1/2 quarts before it showed normal on the stick. Unreal! There's no leaks and have never seen smoke or anything but that was an unreal amount of oil gone and thankful we didn't drive 1,500 miles that low.

Got my last oil change and we headed up on a 3,200 mile trip north including some driving through the mountains. About a third of the way thru I checked the oil and sure enough, about a quart low. Last leg of the trip I checked again, once again about a quart low. Seems to be running fine, just don't understand the heavy oil use.

Any help?
 

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2001 Forester
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529 Posts
Check coolant for oil contamination, remove under belly pan and check oil leak from head gasket. Worse case you have the infamous oil burning issue.


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2013 Forester2.5X Premium Automatic
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Discussion Starter #3
Can check the coolant but have had head gasket leaks in previous vehicles and that always led to drips of oil on the ground. Not sure about the "infamous oil burning issue".... :oops:
 

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2013 Forester2.5X Premium Automatic
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Discussion Starter #4
Okay, just found info on a class action lawsuit against Subaru for excessive oil burning but according to the website below we only had until October of 2016 to file a claim. I do not recall ever getting anything in the mail about this. So is there something that can be done to have Subaru remedy this????

 

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2001 Forester
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Attached is head gasket leak that does not show up on ground. This was from my 2001 Forester. Also had coolant leak. Sent oil sample to Blackstone labs and they detected coolant in oil.


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2018 SJ Forester 2.5i Ltd CVT
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1,446 Posts
Do you use the transmission to do engine braking while driving in the mountains? Engine braking can cause oil consumption as I understand it.
 

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2013 Forester2.5X Premium Automatic
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Discussion Starter #7
Definitely did our share of engine braking in the mountains this last trip. A good part of it was in heavy rain and felt if I rode my brakes I'd probably warp the rotors. But the previous times I didn't do any engine braking down the mighty mountain slopes in west central Florida :O)
 

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2008 2008 2.5i-2018 XT
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13,239 Posts
Early FB engines had a problem with oil use. 95% sure your rings are shot. Do a consumption check with Subaru. They my cover part or all of the cost. Letting oil level get low is terrible for the engine. I am guessing you have always let it get at least a quart down. Good practice is to have it near the top line. I have done that for 50 years. Makes a big difference. I would bet the biggest cause of engine failures is people letting their go low habitually.

If you keepthe oil full any vehicle could go 20K miles without changing oil. Change filter at 10K miles. Not recommending it though.
 
2017 2.5i Fozy CVT
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If you keepthe oil full any vehicle could go 20K miles without changing oil. Change filter at 10K miles. Not recommending it though.
Any engine, or just an oil burner?

Had a friend with an old 70's era Maverick who never changed his oil because he was "changing" it a quart at a time on a weekly basis..
 

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2011 Subaru Forester
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100 Posts
Watch this video. The guy addresses your very issue in the first couple of minutes, and then later in the video discusses an oil consumption test and a 10 year or 100,000 mile extension on the short block of the SB engine.My guess is yours is covered if that is the actual issue.
Sounds like if you are going to do a long trip, its a good idea to bring some oil and check it every second fill up. From what he says if you go slower and dont run it at 75mph or so for long stretches the engine won't consume anywhere near as much oil. I am sure it has some connection to how the engine produces its power, but whatever the case I think its good info that you need to monitor your oil level and add some during long trips.
Also great to know that it's not an issue you have to worry about so much if you are doing mainly city driving.

 

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2013 Forester2.5X Premium Automatic
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Discussion Starter #13

  1. Meh, I have you both beat.
    I owned a 74’ Chevy Vega.

    BAM!

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    Isn't that the notorious aluminum engine block? College friend had one of those and pumped ice cold water in when it was overheating and split the engine block.
 

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2019 Forester - Touring CVT
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Meh, I have you both beat.
I owned a 74’ Chevy Vega.

BAM!

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
Oh Wow! Brings back memories. Back when I was an 18 y/o (in 1970), I worked at the Chevrolet Engine plant in Tonawanda, NY on the Vega engine assembly line. You can't believe how bad that engine was in the early days - by 1976 they had a lot of the bugs worked out. Biggest problem was head gasket leaks. It was Chevy's first foray into an open deck block design and they used an aluminum block with a cast iron head. The two did not mix well in supporting the tops of the cylinders against side thrust movement due to different thermal expansion rates. The early engines had no liners in the cylinders either - they ran aluminum pistions directly against the aluminum cylinder!
 

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2009 Forester 2.5 Premium Crappy 4EAT
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I had a 1970 Chrysler 300 Convertible with a 440. It was made for leaded, but I ran it with 94 octane (sunoco). it burned easily 1.5 qts of oil a week. Same as above. I drove it for 2 years and never changed the oil since I was just dumping it in weekly. It ran amazing, sadly, the bottom rusted out on it. My 2009 forester, has had two occasions where we've found no oil on the stick. My previous '05 2.5X 5spd had one occasion of no oil.
 

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2013 Forester2.5X Premium Automatic
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Discussion Starter #17
Okay, spoke to the dealer I bought the car from and hey acknowledged the issue and said they'll bring it in and inspect it for other leaks and then do an oil change. You drive for 1,200 miles, take it back and they check your oil. If it's low and not leaking anywhere they do the major engine work. They also said I can go to any Subaru dealer and they'll do the work. So I made an appointment and today took the car in. They inspected it and then called me to the counter.

Basically they said I have multiple oil leaks and handed me a quote for nearly $2,000 for just parts and labor. They quoted changing o-rings, changing spark plug gaskets, rocker cover gaskets, exhaust gasket, oil filter gasket and other odds and ends. They told me basically I had to have all that done before they can check for the oil burning issue. I said there has not been a drop of oil on my garage floor where I park it every night and they said it was leaking and I needed to get that done. Said it would take about 13 hours to do. I declined as I could not leave it there right now and then they charged me around $75 just for the testing they did (thought that was free).

So tonight when I got home I crawled under the car and it's about as bone dry as bone dry can be. And looked all around the floor and not a spec of any fluid leaks anywhere to be had. I'm not seeing it. And to loose a quart of oil every 1,000 miles or so without a drop coming from all these leaks they say I have????

Now I'm feeling totally ripped off and feeling like Subaru is going to screw me big time for this. Not sure if it's just this dealer but probably taking it to a local shop nearby and see if they can check for all these leaks. If they don't see it I'm not sure what I'll do. I just don't see loosing that much fluid thru leaks yeah nothing comes out of the engine.

If I could post profanity in here, this is where it would go ---> :mad: 👹💥🔥🧨💩
 

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2009 Legacy
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Basically they said I have multiple oil leaks and handed me a quote for nearly $2,000 for just parts and labor. They quoted changing o-rings, changing spark plug gaskets, rocker cover gaskets, exhaust gasket, oil filter gasket and other odds and ends. They told me basically I had to have all that done before they can check for the oil burning issue. I said there has not been a drop of oil on my garage floor where I park it every night and they said it was leaking and I needed to get that done. Said it would take about 13 hours to do. I declined as I could not leave it there right now and then they charged me around $75 just for the testing they did (thought that was free).
If you don't drop oil, you're likely burning it and not one of those things would fix your issue.
I think all those things are odd and ends. IF that's all they would need to replace, it wouldn't take 13 hours or 2K either.
I'm very skeptical of that estimate.

Perhaps find a good independent Subaru mechanic. Forget that dealer.

Edit: so you see no evidence of oil on the bottom of that engine? You can buy UV dye and a UV flashlight on Amazon. You put the dye in your oil, wait for it to get dark (UV is difficult to distinguish in daylight) and look under the car with that flashlight.
If you have a leak somewhere, the dye will show like the area was colored with a yellow markup sharpie. It is safe and a quick way to see whether you actually have a leak you can't see.
 

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2013 Forester2.5X Premium Automatic
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Discussion Starter #19
Not sure how to find an independent Subaru mechanic. But was doing some searching into this and my Foz was one covered under the oil consumption issue class action lawsuit and part of that extended the warranty from 60K to 100K. Looking into this I found that the warranty covers "Oil seals and gaskets" so if that's what that quote was for, it should be on Subaru's nickle. Going to see about that today.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Just spoke with the dealer and they said that (I believe) it was the head gasket leak. They offered to refund the charges for the testing but he said that the leak would not show up on the ground. I asked about all the gaskets and seals and he said to get to the problem they have to disassemble a lot and that is to replace all the things they need to take apart. So I said my vehicle is still under the 100,000/8 year class action settlement extension and that covers gaskets and seals. He said that extension was ONLY for the piston ring issue and was not a full warranty extension. So I have no clue if he's accurate or not and not sure even how to find out.

Does anyone have specifics or documents on the settlement terms of the class action lawsuit?
 
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