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2019 - Coolant and P2682 / P26A3 nightmare!

314 Views 5 Replies 4 Participants Last post by  Cddelta
Hi all,
I have two question, any comment or suggestion will be appreciated.

1) Recently had the check engine steady light on. Took to Subaru dealer here in new jersey, Just to check why check engine light is on, charge me 150 which later on will go toward total payment if i do the service . With no choice i said go ahead. Came back with quote of $1545 for coolant bypass valve . At that time, I have less than 85000 miles. The guy at the counter also cautioned me not to drive the car at all.
In panic mood, i just took it to my local mechanic and had them fixed, it wasn't cheap either. While the car is being fixed, I just googled about the issue which landed me here in this forum. Many have mentioned that it is covered under warranty. My question is can I get a refund from Subaru or any suggestion .

2. This morning i check my coolant reservoir and the tank is totally empty. upon opening the radiator cap i could see the fins or metal inside the radiator. not sure what level is at the coolant. is that a normal. Should i be worried about anything. I just ordered a gallon Subaru super coolant. Thought i would fill the reservoir upto the full level.
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@Subharu Welcome to the forum from DFW, TX.

Several questions/issues come to mind:
  1. Is the vehicle still under warranty from Subaru? IMHO you should have paid the $150 for diagnostic fee.
  2. Why is there soooo much coolant stains outside the radiator?
  3. Did anyone check the radiator cap?
  4. Coolant level should be checked cold and at the high mark in the plastic coolant bottle.
  5. Is the mechanic you took the vehicle to have worked done a Subaru Specialist or familiar with Subaru's.
  6. CEL? What code was read? What was determined to have triggered to CEL?
IMHO, I would NOT trust your mechanic that you took this vehicle to. Something is not adding up.
Thanks @bman400 for the question.
1. Since i didn't bought the extended warranty. my assumption was no more warranty.
2. I don't know, most properly the mechanic, either at the dealer or the one that fixed check engine. This is the first time i open up the cap.
3. Yes i checked when it was cold. Car had been sitting on driveway more than 4/5 hrs.
4. i have seen him working on forester. when i took my car to him.
5. code was P2682 / P26A3
So, the Thermo Control Valve (AKA bypass valve) was covered under your power train warranty, which goes to 5/years/60,000 miles. You were way past that when the problem occurred, so yeah, no further warranty coverage without an extended warranty. The price you paid for the repair wasn't out of line.

The radiator is a separate, probably related, issue. What you saw is not normal. Hopefully your mechanic simply did a sloppy/poor job refilling the system, and what you saw is a result of that. Worst case is the system is leaking from somewhere. Any puddles under the car?

Here's what I would do. Top off the tank like you planned, AND fill the radiator, then drive until the engine is fully warmed up. Run the heater as well for a bit. After it fully cools, check the reservoir fluid level. You'll probably have to add more fluid, maybe 3-4 times. Repeat the drive-cool-refill process until you you don't need to (i.e. the reservoir is at the full mark after everything has cooled). If you need to keep adding fluid day after day, and the amount you need to add each time isn't getting smaller, pay a visit to your mechanic. The coolant is leaking somewhere.

You may want to clean up those areas where there is coolant residue. That will make it easier to spot a leak.

Your pictures make it look like the radiator cap could be leaking, since there's residue everywhere. Is the seal in good shape? There's a whiteish area in the six o'clock position of your picture. Is that just a reflection?
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@boureesub yea it seems and hopefully it's just poor job. I don't see any puddle underneath the car.
Will update on it once i get the coolant and follow the procedure. Will definitely clean those area.
Thanks again
Subaru covered my thermo control valve at 85,000 miles without questions. I do not have an extended warranty. You may have had luck getting Subaru to cover the repair at a dealer, but not likely at an independent shop.

I would claim the problem under the federal emissions warranty that goes to 80k miles…
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