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Discussion Starter #1
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Hi, I'm Bryan, and I live in California. I'm interested in Subarus for obvious reasons, yet I can't afford a new one. I'm looking at used Foresters (there seems to be a lot of them) from probably before 2006. I have a CarMax in my area and am looking to buy from them. For example, they have a 2000 Forester X with 63k miles for $9900. The transfer fee (it's in the Midwest) is about $900. Would something like this be a good deal, and how many more miles would it last? Any pointers? I've heard that late model Foresters tend to be too heavy for the Boxer engine, so I'm looking for an earlier model.
 

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2007 Forester Sports XT 4EAT
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Good luck on your Forester search. :smile:

Keep in mind if you're looking at earlier Foresters, they were more prone to head gasket failure. In addition, if the Forester is near 105K miles, the timing belt & associated parts need to be replaced... an expensive required service! If the Forester has been maintained correctly, they will last until you get tired of it. :cool:

I'm into MODding, so I prefer an earlier model ('04-'08) Forester. When I started looking for a new project Forester, I wanted a low mile '04 XT (prefer the earlier styling), but after a long search, I settled on an '07 FSXT. :biggrin:

Bobby...

My MODding Journal
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Good luck on your Forester search. :smile:

Keep in mind if you're looking at earlier Foresters, they were more prone to head gasket failure. In addition, if the Forester is near 105K miles, the timing belt & associated parts need to be replaced... an expensive required service! If the Forester has been maintained correctly, they will last until you get tired of it. :cool:

I'm into MODding, so I prefer an earlier model ('04-'08) Forester. When I started looking for a new project Forester, I wanted a low mile '04 XT (prefer the earlier styling), but after a long search, I settled on an '07 FSXT. :biggrin:

Bobby...
My understanding is that the engine coolant in 99-02 Boxer engines needs to be a special kind of coolant only available from Subaru. (I did a little research.) It's likely that people don't want to fork out the $$$$ to Subaru for the special coolant, which is why Foresters from that era are so cheap. I personally don't mind. I don't do racing-I want a reliable daily driver that can use dirt roads in the Sierras. Subarus fit the bill. All other options tend to be American, and those are less than optimal-it's only been in the last couple years that American vehicles have been of passable quality.
 

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2007 Forester Sports XT 4EAT
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I'm not aware of the earlier engines requiring a special coolant? I am aware of the Subaru conditioner that is added to the coolant. The additive is still used & was added to my '03 & '07 when they were serviced last summer. :wink:

Have you looked at this poll? It will give you an idea of the years that had greater head gasket failures. :smile:

Bobby...

My MODding Journal
 

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2010 Forester X Premium
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My understanding is that the engine coolant in 99-02 Boxer engines needs to be a special kind of coolant only available from Subaru. (I did a little research.) It's likely that people don't want to fork out the $$$$ to Subaru for the special coolant, which is why Foresters from that era are so cheap. I personally don't mind. I don't do racing-I want a reliable daily driver that can use dirt roads in the Sierras. Subarus fit the bill. All other options tend to be American, and those are less than optimal-it's only been in the last couple years that American vehicles have been of passable quality.
It's not about the coolant, you can add as much coolant treatment as you want it won't prevent head gasket issue it will only slow it down. You runing into risk of blowing head gasket at about 100k if not earlier. This is a factor that you need to take underconsideration when buying used subaru.
 

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02 Forester L (sold) Manual
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they have a 2000 Forester X with 63k miles for $9900. The transfer fee (it's in the Midwest) is about $900.
This seemed awful high to me but then I realized you're asking about a vehicle that doesn't exist...there is no X model in 2000. So you either have the model wrong or more likely the year should be newer.

New Cars, Used Cars, Blue Book Values & Car Prices - Kelley Blue Book is the best place to find a reasonable value. You should always look it up under "private party" as this is the 'real' value, or what you would get in a insurance total loss settlement. Retail is a dealer's asking price, and typically has at least $1000 of 'negotiating room' padded into it.
 

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My understanding is that the engine coolant in 99-02 Boxer engines needs to be a special kind of coolant only available from Subaru...
The TSB on coolant is dated 2005 and applies to all cars. Subaru recommends a phosphate type coolant for corrosion protection.
http://www.subaruforester.org/vbulletin/f106/tsb-09-42-05-engine-coolant-1059/
There are other phosphate brands that can be used, but Subaru requires their dealers to use Subaru's own Long Life Coolant, probably just because there is no question about what it is. I would only use exactly what they recommend. If Subaru won't pay warranty claims when other brand coolants are used, an owner should not want to assume the same risk by using other brand coolants after the warranty.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I'm not aware of the earlier engines requiring a special coolant? I am aware of the Subaru conditioner that is added to the coolant. The additive is still used & was added to my '03 & '07 when they were serviced last summer. :wink:

Have you looked at this poll (poll url deleted due to posting restrictions)? It will give you an idea of the years that had greater head gasket failures. :smile:

Bobby...

The conditioner is what I meant. I looked at the poll, it seems that 2000 and 2002 had the least failures among older Foresters.
 

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2007 Forester Sports XT 4EAT
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The conditioner is what I meant. I looked at the poll, it seems that 2000 and 2002 had the least failures among older Foresters.
My trusted Subaru dealership uses SHELLZONE coolant & the Subaru conditioner. :wink:

So far my '03X, now my son's Forester, hasn't had a problem & it's highly MODded with an AVO turbo kit. :smile:

Bobby...

My MODding Journal
 
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