Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: Fort Collins, CO
Car: 1998 Outback, 2.5L, 180K
Feedback Score: 0 reviews
Fine when running, hot when stopped
Hello to all,
I've been reading this forum for a few months now as I'm getting to know my 98 Outback. I've had it for about 8 months now and it ran fine while the weather was cool, but through the summer it's been overheating occasionally. I'm only just now posting because I know lots of people have had similar symptoms and I wanted to figure it out without re-posting a problem that you guys have already addressed. I'll talk you through my thought process so far and I'm curious to hear any feedback you have to offer...
First off, it ONLY ever overheats when the tach is below ~2k and usually only when stopped at a light after the car has been running for a while. I drive 35mi one way on an interstate for work and when I hit the light at the exit after the drive it almost always gets warm. As long as I give it some gas while I'm stopped I can keep it cool. Others have mentioned this problem and I can completely relate.
More details: no bubbles in the overflow tank at temp, hot or otherwise. Cooling system has been flushed and tstat and radiator cap were replaced at the local Subie dealer and problem still remains. Drivability is still very good and I'm still driving it every day (albeit gingerly).
My plan at this point is to pull it apart and replace the timing belt, water pump and head gaskets. I don't know the history to know if they've been done recently and with 180k it's probably time to have them done again even if they were done in the past. What I'd rather do is JUST the water pump and timing belt. Can anyone offer some wisdom on my symptoms and path moving forward? I don't have a lot of the classic HG problems, but I can't figure out why it gets warm unless the water pump is just failing slowly and rev'ing the engine gives enough flow that it can keep up.
Thanks to any and all for your thoughts, hopefully we can figure this one out!