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2001 Outback 5 speed, 2000 Outback Automatic, 2002 Legacy Wagon Automatic. All 2.5L
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269 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Might be looking at a 2002 LL Bean with 192K miles on it. Obviously a car with this much "experience" is going to have components failing from wear & neglect. Are there any (3.0 specific) obvious gotchas to be aware of/avoid like the plague? I've never looked at anything other than the 2.5L gen2s.

Thanks
 

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03 H6 OBW & 06 WRX Sportwagon
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17,624 Posts
if the tires are not identical - not a good sign (same brand/model/size/and within 2/32" of wear)

confirm there is NO fuse in the underhood box in the FWD location and that the car can do tight circle on dry pavement smoothly.

Do some highway runs after warm-up , put heater on, make sure it stays hot. Do run-ups and foot-off gas pedal deceleration on exit ramps too. Watch the temp gauge. Make sure heat doesn't go cold.

read the stickies at the top of the gen2 Forum. There are known issues and fixes for most of them.

If possible, find a local shop that is subaru friendly and pay them for a prepurchase inspection, ask them to break it down in 3 parts; what needs doing NOW (plugs?, driveshaft? brakes?, w'ever), what you might save-up for(struts, fluid changes) , and what you might live with(minor drips, squeaks, burned-out intrument bulbs, etc.)


then decide if you want to proceed

the H6es leak oil onto the coil boots sometimes causing missing. Not an easy thing to just 'inspect' for - tricky getting the coils off - especially the first time you DIY it. accessory belt idler and tensioner bearings fail regularly....cold weather fuel seeps from fuel hose connections...I dunno, if taken care of, the H6 is really nice. Oh, that engine really needs premium fuel.
 

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Registered
2001 OBW VDC, 2004 WRX, 1999 LEGACY L (in a heap)
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1,302 Posts
almost all the components outside of the driveline and the rear brakes are the same, i think. So, I don't think there's anything exceptional to watch out for.

get underneath and look for oil leaks/headgasket stuff just like the 2.5s
 

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On the Super Mod Squad
02 Pair: 3.0 VDC Wag & 2.5 Limited Sedan
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26,206 Posts
make sure the tires are all the same, do some slow figure 8s with it and listen for grabbing/ growling. = anything heard, walk. (possible torque bind).

on cloth seat H6, or LLBeans you can put the FWD fuse in and see if it stops.
(fancier VDCs have no such fuse)


find one listed as having bad head gaskets.


you can buy the bad ones for $500-1000 unrusted.

then you can do some testing. (see if it has a bad raditor, rad cap, or porous coolant hoses).
worst thing that can happen: you drop a EZ30D 212hp JDM in there. such can be purchased for $700 and dropped in for 500 or so.

cheaper then doing head gaskets on a 2000-2009 H4. ...and you get 40 more hp/ torque,


...with high octane gas. (such kind of stops mine for being a daily driver,...because my H4 with its head gaskets done long ago is just cheaper to crank the miles up on...
however the way things are going, I think I am going to be able to put vintage plates on my H6 car in June 2026. :smile2:
 

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I simply cannot abide useless people.
2006 2.5i and 2002 3.0 wagons.
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12,306 Posts
It seriously wants premium fuel. Mal runs "meh" at best on 87 octane, can seriously tell timing is being pulled.

Other than plugs, the engine is not bad to work on. The old 4 speed auto is about bullet proof if you remember it likes fresh Dex III ATF every once in while. Filter is behind battery in fenderwell.

Sun roof is likely only partially operational by now, but meh. If you get leaks in the car clean the drains (thread here in our DIY subforum).

I get 17-20 city and 26-28 highway most of the time. Might could hit 30MPG in the right conditions, but I wouldn't bank on it.
 

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Premium Member
2001 VDC/SC One of a Kind
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14,318 Posts
All good. I do differ with the HG leaking. On the H6, its not an issue.

Things to plan for:
struts
alignment
battery check and cables
brakes
coolant and thermostat change
transmission fluid flush
front and rear diff oil changes
spark plugs

H6 is bullet proof as AWDFTW stated. Easy to maintain.
 

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Registered
06 OBW 2.5, 05 Forester, had 03 H6 OBW
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5,935 Posts
On the H6 there is some small fraction that have a fairly innocuous external head gasket coolant leak.

I saw the blue green crunge and some dampness at about 75k miles, started using the coolant conditioner and it was fine for another 200k.
 

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Registered
2001 Outback 5 speed, 2000 Outback Automatic, 2002 Legacy Wagon Automatic. All 2.5L
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269 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Seller became non communicative. I will assume the vehicle has been sold. Is it so hard to remove the ad when something sells?

In any case i was able to snag a one owner 150K mile 2002 Legacy wagon (ok its, NOT an outback... its still a gen2 Subaru) with ALL the service records from the dealership. Timing belt was done at 100k including water pump, idlers etc. One head gasket was replaced... really? just one? Im going to guess they used the same POS HG they took off & not the MLS, so I'll replace both at the first sign of trouble. So now I maintain the 3 gen2s at my house with my daughter's gen2 visiting weekly (she lives 15 miles away) so I'll call it 4.

Tires & suspension are different between the legacy & outback... anything else not trim related?
 

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On the Super Mod Squad
02 Pair: 3.0 VDC Wag & 2.5 Limited Sedan
Joined
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26,206 Posts
Seller became non communicative. I will assume the vehicle has been sold. Is it so hard to remove the ad when something sells?

In any case i was able to snag a one owner 150K mile 2002 Legacy wagon (ok its, NOT an outback... its still a gen2 Subaru) with ALL the service records from the dealership. Timing belt was done at 100k including water pump, idlers etc. One head gasket was replaced... really? just one? Im going to guess they used the same POS HG they took off & not the MLS, so I'll replace both at the first sign of trouble. So now I maintain the 3 gen2s at my house with my daughter's gen2 visiting weekly (she lives 15 miles away) so I'll call it 4.

Tires & suspension are different between the legacy & outback... anything else not trim related?
gear ratios are different between H4 leg and H4 outback.

engines identical though. EGR on 03 and 04.
 
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