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Discussion Starter #21
Thanks !

So after changing the cap I decided to clear the code and start fresh when I drive to work tomorrow. 140 miles round trip. Hopefully I don't see another code, but if I do at least I can rule out the cap and the mechanic can start with the other possibilities.
 

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At 164K miles and 12 years old, Are you on the original radiator? If so, I would recommend changing that out next coolant change. They generally last about 10 years so you could be on borrowed time, unless it was changed when you had your head gaskets done.
 

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At 164K miles and 12 years old, Are you on the original radiator? If so, I would recommend changing that out next coolant change. They generally last about 10 years so you could be on borrowed time, unless it was changed when you had your head gaskets done.


Radiator? 450000 km on mine with original radiator. Mind you, it’s a Volvo but still ... oh and it’s 2004.




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Radiator? 450000 km on mine with original radiator. Mind you, it’s a Volvo but still ... oh and it’s 2004.


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Radiators for Kenworth can be good for over a million but about as relevant as a Volvo radiator on a Subaru forum :wink:

If you look at the patterns of radiator failures on this forum, you'll see it is generally around the 10 year mark and/or 100-120K miles ish.

Best to replace before you need to and takes your head gaskets with it - Cheap insurance as some might say :thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter #25
The car is going in Monday anyway. Going to have him change the oil and see what he thinks as far as whether he thinks it's consuming outside the norm so I'll have him take a look at the radiator as well as give the car a thorough once over. He's pretty much the authority on Subaru in the area and is an enthusiast as well. Repairs them and sells them when people give up on 'em. He's a little out of the way so I can't get to him every time I need an oil change or something minor.
 

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Are you on the original radiator? If so, I would recommend changing that out next coolant change.
They generally last about 10 years so you could be on borrowed time
Mine lasted ~14, but a more useful rule is, imho, "If it's not broke, don't fix it."
 

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Mine lasted ~14, but a more useful rule is, imho, "If it's not broke, don't fix it."
On certain parts like a CV joint etc, waiting until something breaks makes sense

But as you said yourself, if the OP's radiator is original, its time is coming to an end with yours dieing at 14 years (Without stating the mileage). Personally I would not wait for a radiator to go bad, as it is typically when the vehicle is travelling, up to pressure and sudden failure can cause overheating, taking the head gaskets with it, which makes the $100 for a radiator look insignificant financially.

Is saving $100 worth the risk and hassle of dealing with a foreseen breakdown and recovery? You be the judge, however the OP is changing transmission fluid more regularly than the schedule from Subaru in the hope for reliability. With this in mind, changing the radiator next coolant change makes absolute sense in my opinion.

At the end of the day, it is a simple risk/reward balance and if you can afford the vehicle to be off the road dealing with repairs.
 

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Discussion Starter #28
Car spent a few hours at the shop yesterday. Since I couldn't get the bolt off the tranny pan I had them drop the fluid that was in the pan and put my fluid in. First thing they did was change the filter even before cracking the pan bolt open. Asked him what he thought about Subaru saying it's a lifetime part and he just shook his head and said he would never change the fluid without changing the filter. Used a OEM filter. Had them change the oil and asked about the consumption. By all accounts at the shop it's within what should be expected at this mileage. He has one at the shop with over 300k miles on it that is his daily driver. Said I have nothing to worry about as long as I keep maintaining it the same as I've been doing.

Everything else checked out ok. No code since I changed the gas cap.
 

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The biggest thing about the oil filters you pick is that it has to meet or exceed the bypass spec. For the price, it was almost always cheaper to get the genuine OEM filters online - just make sure you get the crush washer too and change it every time.

The newer top mount filters make it a breeze. I haven't done a Fumoto on my old Outback because I had to get under the car anyway for the oil filter. But if I had a top mount like I have on my Forester now, I'd be seriously considering the Fumoto.

What are you talking about a lifetime part? The transmission fluid? That's not accurate for the 4EAT's - they had regular fluid intervals. But the new CVT's are supposed to have no drain interval unless you're towing.
 

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Discussion Starter #30
The filter for the 4EAT on the 07 and the like are considered "lifetime" parts by Subaru (and by some here). I don't see how a filter can be "forever" . I buy the crush washers by the pack from Subaru so I always have them on hand whether it's for the oil change monkeys or if I'm changing tranny fluid.

I can't believe it took this long for them to figure out how to put the filter on top.....saw it when I went to the dealer and couldn't believe my eyes.
 

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Mentioned on here alot, but my 03X has now driven near 100k additional miles needing a quart at least every 1000miles - had HG and all seals done, still burns oil. Car is still doing great in my daughter's care now (She actually keeps the oil topped off thank god). When i saw you mentioned "still on the dipstick" I was thinking "shoot that's cause for celebration!"
 

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Discussion Starter #32
Mentioned on here alot, but my 03X has now driven near 100k additional miles needing a quart at least every 1000miles - had HG and all seals done, still burns oil. Car is still doing great in my daughter's care now (She actually keeps the oil topped off thank god). When i saw you mentioned "still on the dipstick" I was thinking "shoot that's cause for celebration!"
I would have a heart attack if I pulled the stick out and there was nothing on it. Seriously...I'd probably pass out. :surprise:
 

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Discussion Starter #34
I don't take the oil change places seriously other than changing the oil and filter. My fluids and such are done according to the schedule I dictate and/or Subaru's recommended service. The mechanic I took it to is a shop of 4 or 5 mechanics who are Subaru certified mechanics and overall Subaru enthusiasts. If I remember correctly, his reputation stems from having worked at this particular shop for years and then purchasing it from the original owner. At anyt given time his shop is a hornet's nest of Subarus going in and out as he is one of only a handful of local guys who know what they are doing with a Subaru.
from what I saw on his lot he has apparently bought every used Subie in the area and is either using them for parts or in some cases repairing and selling them. We even discussed a car for my son who will be driving in 3 years and is already looking at used Subarus .
 

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The cruise control goes out when the CEL comes on, or when the CEL is on with blinking cruise, indicating an exhaust emission problem.

That's no problem, drive on. You're better off without cruise control anyway.

When I'm at the wheel I'm the only one allowed to control the car. Much safer that way.

Yes, get the radiator and change it when you have time. It will crack across the header tank and lose coolant, there will be signs of green ooze drying around the tank when it's about to die. But not if it's cracking at the bottom, which I don't know about at all, mine have always gone at the top.

I think it's cold winters that kill them quicker.
 

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Discussion Starter #36
Everything checked out ok. Code hasn't returned. Radiator is ok at this time but that might be a nice summer project while I'm on vacation, especially since it is a relatively inexpensive undertaking and will be an excuse to change the hoses too. I live on cruise control. Keeps me from getting pulled over.
 

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I've been burning 1qt every 2000 for like 80,000 mi now. Just check it every 1000 mi or so and you should be fine. My problem is when i put 3000mi on in a month. :)
 

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You can always remove the negative battery cable to clear the Check Engine Light, or buy a OBDII code reader from Harbor Freight. Definitely change the PCV valve with a Subaru part to see if that helps with the oil consumption.

Oil change place was trying to upsell you with "Sludgy Oil" and their flush crap. Personally I would switch to a high mileage synthetic oil and do it yourself buy YMMV.

Main issue is to keep checking the oil fairly regularly and top up as required. Subs of that vintage were known to have oil leaks through HGs but since you have already replaced them it shouldn't be an issue?
 

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Discussion Starter #39
Just wanted to follow up - No CEL since swapping the cap. Next oil change will see a new PCV valve installed. Since I'm not seeing the oil level drop until well after an oil change, I'm curious if it's partially due to the oil breaking down toward the end of its useful life. Will just keep an eye on it and add as needed.
 
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