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Old 06-10-2011, 09:22 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default 30,000 Mile Maintenance

I asked my dealer about the 30,000 mile schedule for a 2011 Outback and received this. What do you think?

Our technician estimates around $450.00 this would include a Lube, Oil Change and Oil Filter change ($30), Cabin Air Filter ($40) and Air Filter ($40), Brake Flush ($59.99), Front End Differential ($80.00) and Rear End Differential ($200.00).
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Old 06-10-2011, 09:46 PM   #2 (permalink)
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those maintenance intervals are way overkill - but certainly a good idea. if you don't mind spending it - do it.

if you like to save a few hundred, then you won't be affecting the longevity of your vehicle either. you're likely to have all sorts of other issues before those items anyway before 200,000 miles or whenever you get rid of it.

the front and rear differentials can wait until 60,000 miles, though the levels should be checked. the rear takes less than 1 quart ($15 or less in fluid) so $200 is pretty high for a simple drain and refill IMO. i never change differentials every 30,000 miles on my daily drivers and i put TONS of miles on mine - all 4 of our daily driver fleet has 170,000 - 180,000 miles and i plan on keeping three of them another 100k.

i would also wait until 60,000 for the brake fluid.

unless you're doing some serious towing - like a lot of miles with a heavy load or serious offroading, etc - only high stress usage like that would warrant 30,000 mile changes.

you're going to get rid of the car for reasons other than the front diff, rear diff and brake fluid failures so excessively early changes aren't really worth it. not a bad idea, just not really adding any value to your ownership either.
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Old 06-11-2011, 10:00 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Yikes ... something I don't know about the rear diff on the new cars ?

The oil, front and rear diffs and brake flush is literally $45 in fluids [synthetic, retail] and an hour labor for a semi skilled tech. ... 2hrs for me in my garage with no lift. I can see a profit margin for the shop but ... that's a bit on the high side.

Shop it around at a few shops with a good rep, I'm sure you can get it for half that.
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Old 06-12-2011, 08:15 AM   #4 (permalink)
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What are other dealerships suggesting for the 30K service? Anyone else question their dealership? Anything specific they try to get you to do?
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Old 06-12-2011, 09:20 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Ignore "dealer services". Only do what the owner's manual says, it is usually a lot less.
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Old 06-12-2011, 01:11 PM   #6 (permalink)
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google 30,000 mile Subaru service, there's like 10 thousand hits. looks like $400-$500 is what they're hoping to make for that service.

best bet is to listen to people that know what they're talking about and don't stand to make money off of you. and then ask them specific questions if you're worried or concerned about something specific.

you should also glance or compare to your OWNERS MANUAL it has all the maintenance intervals in it and should have come with your car.

here's Subaru's official maintenance schedules for 2009 (which will look similar to yours):
http://www.subaru.com/content/downlo...09SchedFed.pdf

it only mentions to inspect gear oils, not replace them.

the dealer service packages are terrible economic decisions - they are very much marketing based. i can explain further if you'd like, but the "sales" department of a dealership does not stop at the showroom floor. they can predict, logistically analyze, and market towards what people are willing to pay over the life span of a car, certain mileage points, etc. dealership profits are completely different than they were just a short time ago. they don't make money on cars - they make money on services now, a huge industry shift has happened since the 80's.
they're still providing a good service and all so they're not "wrong" or "of the devil" but they're certainly not good financial decisions and have no advantages over a proper maintenance schedule. the service managers are trained to sell like a salesman, some aren't even that mechanically inclined (but many are) and need to ask the mechanics specific questions.
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Old 06-14-2011, 04:13 AM   #7 (permalink)
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I agree about most Dealer suggested service beyond the factory recommendations, it does however work in reverse.

BMW says their trans fluid is "lifetime" ... search the major BMW sites and see what actual owners and mechanics say. They also say you can only use their ridiculously expensive fluid to replace it, again, not really the case.

The trans in my Chevy 4l80e has extremely low failure rates if you change the fluid every 30k which isn't recommended on the service schedule or by any dealer I've talked to.

Personally I change out the trans and diff fluids in all my cars every 30k [60k on the BMW trans] but, it's cheap and relatively easy for me so, not a big investment in time and money.
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Old 02-13-2012, 02:36 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Very interesting topic.

I just called the Oakland (CA) dealer and he helpfully offered me three options.
The cheap one (he said "minimal required") was $900+

Included oil & filter replace, brake fluid replace, ATF replace, spark plug replace, front & rear differential replace, and a bunch of other cleaning that I didn't really catch.

The top of the line was over $1300, which I think included a clean, inside and out!

I will be shopping around!
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Old 02-13-2012, 02:38 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Take in the owner's manual and it's service guide or write down what is actually needed at 30k. Ask for a quote to get those jobs done...it is not much work at all.
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2003 Outback: "Kaylee". 142,000 and counting.
Basics: Quaker State Ultimate Durability 5W30+MOS2, PureOne oil filter, Fram air filter, Valvoline Maxlife Dex/Merc ATF, Mobil 1 75W90, Michelin Primacy MXV4.
Mods: Fumoto oil drain valve, Phillips VisionPlus low beams, HIR1 Phillips high beam upgrade, Nokya Hyper Yellow fog lights.

Also: More rust and parking lot scars than I care to think about.
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Old 02-13-2012, 02:43 PM   #10 (permalink)
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When a person calls a dealer and says 30K what needs to be done? Thats a green light to the dealer ie service rep to pull out the laundry list of every possible service they can dream up and give you a price based on ZERO actual details. IE a mileage based major service interval via the dealer is a green light for them to suck your money out of your wallet with the shopvac!

Most non performance cars like subarus - don't need anything major beyond basic oil changes for the first 40K - then possible brake pads between 40-60K pending driver - and diff fluid change in the 40-50K range which is like a $30 service for each diff.

A dealer telling you a 30K service for a non turbo Subaru is $400+ should be avoided!!! A dealer that says $900 should be reported to the better Business board for Fraud.

Go read your subaru owners manual and service manual. Everything is right there and its free! Will save your Thousands of dollars! Worth every penny to go read
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