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Discussion Starter #1
I'm getting back my 04 2.5 Outback from my mother who is going to give it to son. It only has about 60,000 miles on it. I live in Western New York and the boy (19yo) is in Salt Lake City, UT. He isn't too mechanically inclined plus he has no real place to do work in.
My question is whether I should redo the timing belt, wp, seals, etc., the front & rear dif changes or not bother and maybe do them next summer (or later) when I visit or if he drives the car home. I'd rather not waste my time and $ if I don't have to.
I'm leaning on waiting - who knows, he might total it over the winter!
Any ideas would be most helpful.
 

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you could easily wait until next summer. approaching 10 years though so the belt requires replacement by age before mileage.

water pump probably isn't that big of a deal, very rarely do those fail on these engines. reseal the oil pump and tighten the backing plate screws.
 

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Gary, I am glad you have such faith in the longevity of water pumps, especially now that I have an H6.
 

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Gary, I am glad you have such faith in the longevity of water pumps, especially now that I have an H6.
I would rephrase that, I don't have faith in longevity of "water pumps"...but "EJ water pumps". There are other Subaru engines that have a much higher failure rate than EJ engines.

Water pumps driven by timing belts/chains that are that close to the engine are more robust by design. Water pumps driven by serpentine belts may be more prone to failure I think due to the long shaft/pulley set up needed to reach out to the serpentine belts and probably higher variances in tensioning where timing belts are generally auto tensioned and shouldn't put undo strain on the pump shaft.

So far it seems like the H6 has a very robust design as well, i haven't seen or even heard of a failure yet, though I'm sure it's happened once.

EJ and EZ water pump failures are seemingly rare, where as I used to always replace water pumps on older subaru's as preventative maintenance or "while I'm in there", I'm to the point where skipping EJ pumps doesn't seem to be a big deal if it's a good fit for a given situation. They usually give some signs/symptoms rather than than just catastrophically give up the ghost...I still replace them often but not always. The caveat now is that most EJ's are now interference so you don't want to take on too much risk so replacement is wise.
 

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Now I have to think about the meaning of my post, if any. I'd say, with an EJ pump, taking a gamble is a choice (likely a safe one). With an EZ, there isn't a choice, which is why I'm glad that even EJ pumps are deemed safe to run for 200K miles.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
so do you think I should change the automatic transmission fluid/filter and front and rear differentials at this time or can they wait too?
 

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so do you think I should change the automatic transmission fluid/filter and front and rear differentials at this time or can they wait too?
I would change the ATF fluid and front diff gear oil now.

Diff fluids can wait, though I would at a minimum check them. Front diff is far more important than rear and easy - just like changing engine oil but no filter to mess with. The front diff is intergrated into the trans so if you loose your front diff you're basically looking at a transmission rebuild or replacement.

Filter can wait. Never replace the internal "filter" (it's not even a filter though it's called one). The external screw on types you can replace now or later.
 
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