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2015 Subaru Forester 2.5 Lineartronic CVT TR580
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Last time I did a fluid change I used Valvoline's full synthetic CVT fluid. Cant say there are any side effects but I wonder what CVT fluid you guys use?
Also where can I get myself some of the genuine Subaru CVTF?
 

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2013/14 2.5i-L CVT
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935 Posts
I wonder what CVT fluid you guys use?
Genuine Subaru. Risking $8k to save a couple of bucks seems false economy to me. Subaru's CVT is significantly different to most of the others so I question whether one fluid can be perfect for them all.

Also where can I get myself some of the genuine Subaru CVTF?
Subaru dealers, Amazon, Ebay.
 

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2015 Subaru Forester 2.5 Lineartronic CVT TR580
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Genuine Subaru. Risking $8k to save a couple of bucks seems false economy to me.
Do you know what seems false economy to me? To order cvt fluid from ebay and amazon and pay for the delivery twice the price of the whole 6 quarts package. In my country Subaru dealers do not sell CVTF so I have to order it and wait half a year for it to arrive. I prefer to use something I can get locally. Also Valvoline's, Eneos' and Amsoil's CVT fluids are certified by Subaru so I am not risking anything. 10k miles since I put the Valvoline fluid and it runs just as smooth if not better.
 

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Sahuarita, AZ 2018 Forester Limited
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A point not made yet... Subaru (Fuji Heavy) doesn't "manufacture" lubricants. They are merely rebranded.
But perhaps to Subaru's specifications.

As long as the lube is "certified"
So how is it "certified". Does Subaru specifically endorse it?

you don't risk anything by using that alternative, except perhaps to upset a fanboy who somehow thinks a Subaru logo on a bottle means it's the only option. It isn't.
The risk you run is a Subaru dealer pushing back on a CVT warranty claim, whether the dealer is right or wrong. And, yes, I'm familiar with the Magnuson Moss Warranty Act.
 

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2013/14 2.5i-L CVT
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Also Valvoline's, Eneos' and Amsoil's CVT fluids are certified by Subaru
Do you have links to the makers sites in which they state their fluid has been certified/approved by Subaru? I haven't been able to find it on their websites, only their own claims that they are suitable on the product data sheets.
 
2017 2.5i Fozy CVT
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1,283 Posts
Look under data bulletin g3273 pdf

G3273.pdf amsoil

...under technical information in data bulletin for the Amsoil CVT FLUID
 
2017 2.5i Fozy CVT
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Do you have links to the makers sites in which they state their fluid has been certified/approved by Subaru?
No expert on this, could be wrong, but API does certification and maybe some independent labs. Car.manfs do not.


A lubricant manf can submit product to a lab to check whether same meets "specification" for a particular application.
 

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Sahuarita, AZ 2018 Forester Limited
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...under technical information in data bulletin for the Amsoil CVT FLUID
Reminds me of the label on the green Prestone coolant which says "All makes, all models...works with any color of antifreeze...will NOT void vehicle manufacturer's warranty". No thanks, I'd rather use the Subaru Super Coolant and Subaru CVT fluid.
 

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2013/14 2.5i-L CVT
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Look under data bulletin g3273 pdf
Nowhere does it say it is certified for/by Subaru. The only claims I can see are:
Page 1:
Field Proven

Field testing was conducted to compare AMSOIL Synthetic CVT Fluid and Nissan NS-2 CVT Fluid. Four vehicles (two equipped with AMSOIL CVT Fluid and two with Nissan NS-2 CVT Fluid) were driven 100,000 miles before the transmissions were torn down and inspected.

As indicated by the lack of wear in the belt and pulley photos below, AMSOIL CVT Fluid provided outstanding protection throughout the duration of the field trial proving it is a high quality replacement for Nissan NS-2 CVT Fluid.
Page 2:

AMSOIL lab testing also reveals AMSOIL CVT Fluid met, and in some cases surpassed, the protection and performance of Nissan NS-2 CVT Fluid:

In FZG wear testing (ASTM D5182), Nissan NS-2 achieved a stage 7 pass while AMSOIL CVT Fluid significantly surpasses it with and 11 stage pass.

In the JASO LVFA Anti-Shudder Durability Test, AMSOIL CVT Fluid lasted six times longer, translating into improved anti-shudder durability and reduced noise, vibration and harshness.
So it seems all their testing has been confined to Nissan/Jatco CVTs which are significantly different to the Subaru chain drive CVTs.

It also says:

APPLICATIONS AMSOIL Synthetic CVT Fluid is recommended for belt- and chain-type continuously variable transmissions requiring the following:
This is Amsoil's recommendation, not Subaru's.
 
2017 2.5i Fozy CVT
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[QUOTE="slothman, post: 7571461, ]


This is Amsoil's recommendation, not Subaru's.
[/QUOTE]Well It is Amsoil's site so I think that goes without saying.
 

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2012 Forester X Auto
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I'd like to see where Subaru specifies that a Subaru branded lubricant MUST be used or it voids your warranty.
Since that would be illegal, you won't.
If warranty claims are denied due to the use of a product in the course of maintaining your vehicle that is claimed to have caused the problem, the dealer/manufacturer will have to be the one to prove that the use of that product caused the failure. Why would Subaru spend the time and money to certify other manufacturer's products when they make a markup on their own? The simple answer is there is no reason for them to do that.

Provided that you use an appropriate product for the application (in the case of lubricants it's the API certification), a dealer would be pretty stupid to fight that warranty case, as it would be a sure loser.
Could it be a point of contention.. Possible.. Would you ultimately prevail and get warranty coverage... Certainly.
 

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Sahuarita, AZ 2018 Forester Limited
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Subaru's 2018 Warranty and Maintenance booklet states:
"These warranties do not cover any part which malfunctions, fails or is damaged due to a failure to follow the operating instructions set forth in the Owner's Manual (e.g., failure to use proper fuel)…"

In the Specifications section of the Owner's Manual, for CVT fluid type it states "Consult your Subaru dealer".

Do you think a Subaru dealer is going to recommend or approve anything other than Subaru CVT fluid? If so, get it in writing.
 

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2019 Forester Touring
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1,359 Posts
I won’t venture into the suitability of what may or may not work as a substitute CVT fluid in Subaru transmissions, but I’ll just say this:

Since the vehicle owner will clearly get caught up in the middle between Subaru and the 3rd party supplier... each one telling the owner it’s the other’s fault/responsibility why the CVT no longer functions correctly (if/when that day ever comes)...

I can only imagine what the costs would be (in both $$$ and time) one would end up doling out fighting with a manufacturer over the suitability of a lubricant or fluid that the user couldn’t clearly match up the specifications of the fluid with the manufacturer’s stated requirements.

While my experience wasn’t in the vehicle arena, I played that “game” once.

I lost.
 
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