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Discussion Starter #1
Hi guys,

I am looking to buy an older Forester, and I will hopefully be going to look at a 98 L with 136,000 miles soon. I realize that is a lot of miles, but I don't intend to put a lot on it, and I only want to spend a certain amount of money. I am mechanically inclined enough to deal with major problems if they do come along.

Can anyone help me with some specifics on what to be aware of for trouble and issue areas with the 98's? From what I have gathered, the head gasket problem is not an issue because it is a phase I engine, versus the phase 2 99-02's. I think the rear wheel bearings are a sore spot though? The people who are selling it claim it has been regularly maintained (with all records) and it has been free of problems.

Thank you for any help/ideas you can provide!
 

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Administrator
2004 Forester XT Premium 4EAT
Joined
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29,449 Posts
First off, welcome... The Phase I EJ25 engines are the ones afflicted with the head gasket troubles (and some of the early Phase II engines as well), so that's something to keep an eye on.
 

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#8 Post ho
1999 Subaru Forester
Joined
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2,439 Posts
silke mentioned the major problem that plauged the older sf's, but they are still solid as i have a 99 with about 96300 miles and its running great!

Timing belt should have been done around 105k miles

A "normal" tapping/ ticking sound will probally be heard, but shouldn't be anything to really worry about
 
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Discussion Starter #4
doh! I thought because there was a head gasket leak recall for phase II engines, that it only afflicted those (http://www.cars101.com/recalls.html). If at 136,000 miles they are claiming it doesnt have any leaks, should I suspect dishonesty? What exactly is the problem with the gaskets? poor design? I hear that using only subaru coolant helps avoid the problem-- is it a corrosion problem from using other coolants?

Thanks for the response pleiad7
 
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Discussion Starter #6
I was told by a mechanic at an independant shop on my 87 DL wagon that the tapping noise was from a weak oil pump not the lifters as even back then the engines had hydraulic lifters. Beats me I sold the car 20,000 mi later and had no problems and the new owners put another 50,000 mi on rig and finally retired it at about 200,000 mi as the dirt road they lived on was just rattling too many parts off.
 
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