Subaru Forester Owners Forum banner

1 - 10 of 10 Posts

·
Registered
2000 Forester L
Joined
·
54 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Based on replies to a separate thread I started (& my own gut instinct that was confirmed by the replies), I need to replace my 2000's head gaskets. I have searched the forum threads for "head gaskets" and a lot comes back, but I haven't found a step-by-step guide to this project in this web site. Is there a recommended (& affordable) guide like Chilton or Haynes that details the steps for head gasket replacement? (some reviews of these guides make me think they are geared more to brake pad replacement etc and not a big project like head gaskets) Other sources I've found state (in very general terms) that a non-professional will take roughly 12 hours to do this project, and the manifolds & numerous other things need to be removed before the heads can be removed. Or is there a reliable online source that I can print out? I don't want to screw something up! And I don't want to spend many $100s for labor I know I can do myself with the proper detailed guidance. Thanks! (oh I also assume that in addition to buying the new head gasket kit, I should buy new gaskets for anything I have to remove that has a gasket like valve covers. I see head gasket kits that include a lot more gaskets than just the head gaskets, and am not sure if these include all the ancillary gaskets as well)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
377 Posts
Autozone.com has free online manuals that are not bad. I wouldn't skimp on information when headed into a diy repair that will cost $400-500, if you overhaul the cylinder heads, and you should.

good luck
 

·
Registered
2000 Forester L
Joined
·
54 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
The forgotten about local library is good for getting your hands on a manual. Just bring it back.

There is always Subaru Technical Information System - Home
That was one of my first thoughts, but checked and our (rural) 4-county library system doesn't have a Forester specific guide (nor really any auto repair guides) and another nearby (& much larger) county library requires $30/year for non-residents, which I don't need, so even the full $25 for a Haynes guide is better, but costs way less on Amazon. While doing errands today I did stop by Auto Zone and looked at the Haynes guide, seems pretty easy to follow. Made some room in my barn & pulled it in this evening, about a week until I can buy the gasket kit etc.
 

·
Registered
2000 Forester L
Joined
·
54 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Autozone.com has free online manuals that are not bad. I wouldn't skimp on information when headed into a diy repair that will cost $400-500, if you overhaul the cylinder heads, and you should.

good luck
No doubt good advice in overhauling the heads, but what exactly is involved?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
377 Posts
What I meant is to check every source possible; Subaru download manual, AZ online manuals, posts on this forum and other forums. A single tip from others can make a difference.

good luck
 

·
Registered
2000 Forester L
Joined
·
54 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
What I meant is to check every source possible; Subaru download manual, AZ online manuals, posts on this forum and other forums. A single tip from others can make a difference.

good luck
gotcha, but you also said I should overhaul the heads if I read your post right... now I'd be happy to get another 2 or 3 years out of the car (bought it ~ 1 1/2 yrs ago) so I am looking at the cost/benefit, and I'm on a real tight budget (even the ~$180 for the gasket kit is killing me) but if doing the heads overhaul is really worth it I'll keep it in mind... just would like to know what that involves, thanks
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
377 Posts
The reason I always overhaul heads w/ HG replacement stems from my first HG replacement on a Mitsubishi 2.5L, 6 cylinder inline engine in a 80's Voyager. Head looked good and valves seemed to be seating. I checked flatness and could not detect anything out of specs. I replaced HG and 2 wks later had coolant leaking into cylinders. I had been told to always shave aluminum heads and wanted to get by w/o that step. After having head rebuilt and shaved, I reinstalled w/o problems. I've done 4-5 other HG jobs since and have no further problems w/ rebuilt heads on each job.

This is not definitive proof that rebuilding heads is always necessary, but you risk having to do the job twice IMO, if you don't. Each Diy'r must make this decision.

Head overhaul is disassembly, checking for cracks, install new valve stem seals, reseating all valves, and finally shaving the head absolutely flat (few mils shaved).

good luck
 

·
Registered
2003 XS
Joined
·
176 Posts
The reason I always overhaul heads w/ HG replacement stems from my first HG replacement on a Mitsubishi 2.5L, 6 cylinder inline engine in a 80's Voyager. Head looked good and valves seemed to be seating. I checked flatness and could not detect anything out of specs. I replaced HG and 2 wks later had coolant leaking into cylinders. I had been told to always shave aluminum heads and wanted to get by w/o that step. After having head rebuilt and shaved, I reinstalled w/o problems. I've done 4-5 other HG jobs since and have no further problems w/ rebuilt heads on each job.

This is not definitive proof that rebuilding heads is always necessary, but you risk having to do the job twice IMO, if you don't. Each Diy'r must make this decision.

Head overhaul is disassembly, checking for cracks, install new valve stem seals, reseating all valves, and finally shaving the head absolutely flat (few mils shaved).

good luck
This is sound advice but I think it depends on the car. I know BMWs, unless they really overheat, don't generally need the heads milled, but then again, their engines are damn near bullet proof to begin with. Subarus, on the other hand, not so much. With all the problems related to head gaskets, I think milling the heads is a required item no matter what, in my opinion.
 

·
Registered
2006 Forester LLBean Automatic
Joined
·
538 Posts
What I meant is to check every source possible; Subaru download manual, AZ online manuals, posts on this forum and other forums. A single tip from others can make a difference.

good luck
+1 on that.

It sounds like you have turned a couple of wrenches, so go for it. I agree with Texas Forester that you need to read as much as you can about the procedure. The forum is a great resource. Dig into it with the search engine, and read the tutorials, watch videos, and don't be afraid to ask questions.

Here is a link to a really good tutorial on pulling the engine out of a Subie (and a couple of other things). He is working on a Legacy, but it will be very similar to pulling the engine on your Foz and the pictures are excellent. Subaru Legacy Outback Repair

Do your research, take your time, and use your Google-Fu. There will be tons of info on the web.
 
1 - 10 of 10 Posts
Top