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Discussion Starter #1
So I just picked myself up a 2005 Forester XT with 112,000 miles on it. Please tell me I bought a good car and not the black sheep of the family! What are some things I need to be on the lookout for? Does this have timing chain issues like Toyotas and Hondas? How will I know if it is going (or does it just go) How much should it cost to replace as well as is it a do-it-yourself kinda thing? Thanks for any assistance, and I look forward to getting to know everyone!
 

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2001 Forester S
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106 Posts
Welcome! I hope your Forester gives you trouble-free operation for another 100,000 miles.

If you look around the forum here you will see that the things to watch for are:

- Get the timing belt (not a chain) replaced now. The service interval is every 105,000 miles so you are overdue if it hasn't been done. If the other belts are worn, get them replaced too. Timing belt + accessory belts + labor is about $400 at a Subaru dealer.

- Regularly check your coolant levels, say once a month. Shine a flashlight through the coolant reservoir on the side of the radiator. Do this after the car has been sitting overnight. You should not lose any coolant over time. Rapid loss of coolant could mean a leaky radiator or hose (common) or a blown head gasket (unfortunately more common than Subaru owners would like). [If there is no coolant in the reservoir, add coolant (safe for aluminum radiators) so that you can see the level.] You want to catch coolant loss early to make sure you are not stranded by an overheated car.

- Get an OBD-II code reader. This is good for any car you have (past about 1995). If your check engine light ever comes on, you want to know why so you can make informed decisions. A frequent code is P0420. Check the forum postings for more info.

- Everything else is standard advice for a car over 100,000 miles. Get all the fluids changed (transmission, differentials, power steering, brake fluid) if you do not know the last time this was done. Check the condition of all belts. Check tire pressures regularly to make sure none have slow leaks (check the spare too!).
 

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2008 2008 2.5i-2018 XT
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13,235 Posts
When you get the belt changed, you want to get a new water pump, seals, bearings, and idler. There is a post around here that describes it. I believe the cost is well over a grand bc the engine gets pulled.

Also change your coolant. Go with the Subaru brand and add the bottle of Conditioner (stop leak). I would do an oil analysis www.blackstone-labs.com and change all of the fluids.
 
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