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1999 FORESTER L
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117 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
My 99 SF has blown the head gaskets again, it has 203K and I was wondering if it makes sense to get a COPPER HEAD GASKET SET, so that this does not happened again EVER! it's pretty expensive to do a HG job here in NY. Minimum is $1,000 dollars! The last time it went at 102K and I really do not want to go through it again after this, I drive my daily driver about 100 miles per day, but I only work 4 days a week. The other 3 days the car does not move at all. I change the oil every 3,000 miles and a NEW FRAM oil filter like clock work, faithfully. :icon_frown:
 

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2009 Forester X Premium
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3,091 Posts
I don't think copper and aluminum mix real well
 

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1999 FORESTER L
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117 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Yeah , so I've read on previous forums. It appears that for a daily driver like mine I am going to go with COMETIC branded gaskets, they seemed to be better than the OEM, since the oem's only lasted 100K, I am reading on a lot of SUBARU forums on the COMETIC brand and it appears to be the way to go.
 

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2009 Forester X Premium
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3,091 Posts
Yeah those sound like they'd work good.

Cometic MLS Head Gasket (Set of 2 - Subaru WRX EJ25) - Part # C4264-040

All cometic head gaskets are 4 layer MLS (multi-layer steel). Cometic uses stainless steel for increased strength, it's ablity to rebound and corrision resistance. The outer layers of the gasket are embossed and coated on both sides with a flouroelastomer rubber based material designed to meet the demans of a variety of harsh sealing enviroments, load conditions, and surface finishes. This coating is also heat resistant to 482 degrees F. The shim layers of the head gakset is also stainless steel but is left uncoated and can be varied for thickness. Cometic MLS gaskets are ideal for aluminum or iron surfaces will seal better than any other gasket PERIOD!

Bore: 100mm
Thickness: .040"
 

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1999 FORESTER L
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117 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
THESE ARE THE REASONS WHY THE COMETIC BRANDED HG ARE BETTER THAN OEM:

What is MLS?
MLS stands for Multi-Layer Steel. MLS head gaskets are comprised of three layers of stainless steel. The outer layers are an embossed viton coated stainless steel providing a superior seal with excellent rebound characteristics and are corrosive resistant. MLS head gaskets reduce bore distortion and withstand extreme cylinder pressures.

What is AFM?
AFM is a chemically blown, compounded nitrile synthetic rubber, bonded to an aluminum core with temperature resistance of over 2500 F. AFM material does not require gasket sealers or silicone bead. Re-torque is NOT required.

Why does Cometic recommend MLS gaskets to be installed dry?
Cometic Multi-Layer Steel (MLS) head gaskets go on dry because they are coated with a sealant. Each MLS head gasket is coated with a .001" thick viton rubber that is bonded to the outer stainless steel layers. Adding an additional sealer can hinder the performance of an MLS head gasket.

What surface finish is required to us an MLS head gasket?
A surface finish of 50 RA (roughness average) or finer, is recommended for a proper gasket seal. Anything rougher may conflict with the gasket design.
 

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Looking at there website those gaskets are only $50 did you look there?

Sport Compact


Oh, I see thats only for 1 gasket
 

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1999 FORESTER L
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117 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
Yup! $50.73 each, $101.46 + $15.00 Shipping = $116.46 compared to eBay $89.99 SHIPPED!
 

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Smooshed FOTY 2011
2005 Lifted 2.5 XT 5-Speed MT Dual-Range
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....since the oem's only lasted 100K
"Only" lasted 100k? You should be elated. Most engines need complete rebuilding after 100k miles, only having to do the headgaskets should be a blessing.
 

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1999 FORESTER L
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117 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
I also replaced the Radiator, Timming Belt, All Pulleys, Seals, Water Pump, Thermostat, Lower Radiator Hose, PCV Valve, Oil Filter, Gas Filter, Air Filter, Tranny Filter, All Fluids, and flushed the motor from that green garbage they call antifreeze, and replaced it with the "RED STUFF" "DX-COOL" is better for the internal engine parts. Does not corrode radiator or water pump. I found that the additive that subaru recommends is a quick fix for a BIG problem waiting to happend. They came out with that to calm down the general public on why their cars fail pre-maturely on the head gasket problem that drives customers to other manufactures like Toyota, Honda, Nissan.
 

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1999 FORESTER L
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Discussion Starter #11
Don't get me wrong here, I would not trade my SF for any other car, I don't mind doing the preventive maintenance. It's the HG job that I dislike.
 

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I also replaced the Radiator, Timming Belt, All Pulleys, Seals, Water Pump, Thermostat, Lower Radiator Hose, PCV Valve, Oil Filter, Gas Filter, Air Filter, Tranny Filter, All Fluids, and flushed the motor from that green garbage they call antifreeze, and replaced it with the "RED STUFF" "DX-COOL" is better for the internal engine parts. Does not corrode radiator or water pump. I found that the additive that subaru recommends is a quick fix for a BIG problem waiting to happend. They came out with that to calm down the general public on why their cars fail pre-maturely on the head gasket problem that drives customers to other manufactures like Toyota, Honda, Nissan.
I wouldn't put dexcool anywhere near a subaru. Its possible that that is ruining your headgasket even. Also I wouldn't touch a fram (oil) filter with a 10 foot pole.
 

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2014 CVT
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824 Posts
I also replaced the Radiator, Timming Belt, All Pulleys, Seals, Water Pump, Thermostat, Lower Radiator Hose, PCV Valve, Oil Filter, Gas Filter, Air Filter, Tranny Filter, All Fluids, and flushed the motor from that green garbage they call antifreeze, and replaced it with the "RED STUFF" "DX-COOL" is better for the internal engine parts. Does not corrode radiator or water pump. I found that the additive that subaru recommends is a quick fix for a BIG problem waiting to happend. They came out with that to calm down the general public on why their cars fail pre-maturely on the head gasket problem that drives customers to other manufactures like Toyota, Honda, Nissan.
i would use the subaru approved coolant, the reason??? who has put millions of dollars into finding the best fluids for your car to use???????? subaru, just my thoughts, also a 100k for that car, is a good life for headgaskets. and as funkymonkey said stay away from dexcool, its a GM fluid(nothing worng with it being GM), not a subaru fluid and it has been known to eat waterpumps
 

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1999 FORESTER L
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117 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
The problem with Subaru additive is that the stuff is a temporary fix, it turns into a paste and it makes your water pump cease, it clogged the radiator fins, and God knows what it did to the inside of the chambers of the head and internal engine parts. I wish I would had saved the "STUFF" I took out of the thermostat seating, so I can take a picture of it and post it on the boards. It also "STOPPED" the OEM thermostat from opening or closing, But now that I think about it? it does EXACTLY what SUBARU wants it to do and that is "SEAL" any leaks you may have with their "DEFECTIVE" head gaskets problem. I've been doing some research with swap shops, machine shops, and on-line forums, the best way to go is "COMETIC" gaskets instead of OEM, SUBARU refuses to take blame for their HG problem. Also 100K per HG job is fine with me, as long as I don't have to pay for it. But again the best part of owning a Subaru is that is not like any other car, it's AWD! Their setup is very different to traditional car manufacturers, and that is why I would never trade my Subaru for nothing in this world. I use the "RED STUFF" on my 750iL since 1998 and had no complaints what so ever. I also use "AMSOIL" on my BMW as well. The reason I use "FRAM" oil filters is because I change my oil & filter faithfully every 3,000 miles like clock work. I do my own general mechanic work and save tons of money that way.
 

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1999 FORESTER L
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117 Posts
Discussion Starter #16
Wow! I did not know that. So, I see why you guys don't like them, huh! Well, your links convinced me not to buy the FRAM oil filters anymore.
 

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1999 FORESTER L
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117 Posts
Discussion Starter #18
Hey, that is the brand I picked up for my next oil change! Of course that's after my HG job. :(
 

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1999 FORESTER L
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117 Posts
Discussion Starter #20
coolant coditioner theory?

That link is pretty good information. Exactly what my old radiator look like. I always use fresh tap water to flush an engine and the flush machines have other people's garbage in it. Not only the radiator, but the water pump, thermostat, radiator reserve tank and hoses had that same gunk paste that formed after using the coolant conditioner, Not sure why it was so thick, unless someone put something else in there without my knowledge. It looked like when you take sugar and heat it up and turns into a paste, except it was green in color.
 
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