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2005 Forester
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8 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I understand that head gasket failure is a problem, what should I look for on the engine, such as leakage or coolant stains, exhaust smoky so on.

I am looking at a 2001 with 93k on it, the dealer has replaced the timing belt, the car runs and drives fine, can the head gaskets go on for say 150-200k, or do all of them give out around the 100k mark?

Are all the engines the same for 2001? I think I saw 25EJW on the under the hood.

Thanks in advance.
 

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Premium Member
2004 Forester 4EAT
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5,458 Posts
The head gasket problem on the sohc motors is an external leak. You will need to get under the car and pull down the splash pan. Look where the head meets the block on the bottom of the motor. (Both sides) If you see and green stuff or moisture, it's leaking. Also look in the oil and radiator. Make sure fluids are where they should be. Then, if it looks good, buy it. Bring it home, do a radiator flush, and add Subaru coolant additive to it. Call yourself lucky to find one and enjoy it. Know this problem will probably pop up adventually.
 

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2005 Forester
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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks, I will check it out, I did smell what seemed to be like a belt smell at stop lights, do you know what smell you would get from coolant on a hot motor?
 

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2009 & Jamboree Motorhome
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347 Posts
I understand that head gasket failure is a problem, what should I look for on the engine, such as leakage or coolant stains, exhaust smoky so on.

I am looking at a 2001 with 93k on it, the dealer has replaced the timing belt, the car runs and drives fine, can the head gaskets go on for say 150-200k, or do all of them give out around the 100k mark?

Are all the engines the same for 2001? I think I saw 25EJW on the under the hood.

Thanks in advance.
jgrote got it right. Do like he said..

We have a friend with well over 200 thousand miles on hers and no headgaskets replaced.. But she does run the Subaru additive and do all her services.. I really think many of the problems come from loosing coolant and overheating the engine.. If that does not happen then they seem to last a long time.. So no, most of them do not give out around the 100 thousand mile mark.. Our 99 had 199,000 when we got rid of it and no problems..

Our 01 now has just over 98,000 and will be due timing belt soon.. It shows no problems.

Snowdance

Flickr: snowdance38's Photostream
 

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2001 Forester S
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32 Posts
Over 156K no leaks yet.:Banane08:


If you are smelling something, none sweet smell, check inner boots on axles for cracks. Grease thrown on the exhaust from the axle boots gives off a smell when it burns off.
 

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03X MT
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847 Posts
I don't think the leak is always external. on my 03X the HG leak was between the exhaust and coolant ports in internally. The leak would cause all the coolant to be blown out of the expansion bottle and cause the engine to overheat. All was corrected by using the Subaru recommended conditioner.
 

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2004 Forester 4EAT
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5,458 Posts
Mine were leaking externally. Actually left a stain on my driveway. Coolant conditioner solved my problems too. I'm always a bit skeptical of majic liquids that solve bad hg's. I'm impressed.
 

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03X MT
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Same here as far as the "magic liquids" in fact when I bought the 03x in 02 I was under the impression that the HG problems had been resolved so I never used the conditioner on my first rad flush.

The first time I saw the temp guage rise I was not expecting it. So after some trouble shooting and a few parts changes I did a complete coolant change while adding the conditioner, no over heating since.
 

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02 Forester L (sold) Manual
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1,221 Posts
The external leak can be oil instead of coolant. That's what ours did. Oil leak right over the driver's side motor mount.
 

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2005 Forester
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Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
Well I did get some good news, when I check with the service department where I am buying the car, they looked the records up to see if the water pump had been replaced with the timing belt, it was listed that the head gaskets were replaced along with the right front wheel bearing. However, the water pump was not replaced.

So I pick up the car tomorrow.
 
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