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Discussion Starter #1
We just ordered our first Subaru - 2015 2.5i premium outback. While it's in transit I have time to consider buying the 3yr maintenance plan. I'm a vehicle DIY'er so I initially turned it down but it does seem to be a good (not great) plan financially speaking.

I was wondering how easy maintenance is on 2015 2.5 outbacks? Are there easily accessible jacking points with a quality floor jack? Do you have to remove plastic shrouding to get to them or any other common service parts? How about points to place jack stands for all 4-up tire rotations? Oil changes seem easy with the filter location. Do you have to remove any plastic shrouding to get to the oil plug? How easy are the diffs to drain and fill? Cabin filter acces? Air filter access?
 

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Easy to jack up all 4 sides and place on jack stands.
Subarus are built for DIY!

1. Oil / Filter, 6K mile - Simple access, 5 qt jug synthetic from Walmart and OEM filter - $30
2. Tire Rotation, 6K miles - Place car on 2 jack stands per side, easy enough, adjust tire pressure.
3. Cabin Air Filter, 12K miles - Easy access, OEM $20
4. Engine Air Filter, 30K miles - Easy access, OEM $20
5. Brake Fluid, 30K miles - Easy access, simple with Speed Bleeders, OEM $6 brake fluid.

Diff drain and fill is not necessary at all but is a bit difficult...It might be worth paying someone.

What do they want to rape,,,errr,,,charge you for that, umm, "Plan"?

For the price of their profit,,,errr,,,plan you can buy every tool you could ever want including air tools and a small portable car lift! And you know the maintenance will be done, and done right, DIY. The time consuming part is tire rotation (sans air tools/car lift). Every other line item is under 15 minutes.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Thanks JoDa. I think it was around $600 for 3yr 45k. Having someone else do it would be a nice break as I already maintain 3 vehicles. And I like the fact that it's documented at the dealer for increased resale value if I have to sell.

Cars101 says gear fluid as needed at 30k, 60k, etc? Not sure what that means? what makes diff change difficult? access? fill point access? I have a pump for filling diffs on my land cruiser.
 

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Are there easily accessible jacking points with a quality floor jack?
My 2012 really SUCKS for jacking-points (with a floor-jack). The only place I have found to use a floor-jack in the rear is on suspension-components.

I usually end up pulling out the supplied factory-jack to get it off the ground and even-then struggle to find a solid point for the jack-stands.
 

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I did my 1st oil change on my '15 Premium @ 1000-ish miles and didn't hafta jack up the front at all.

crawled under the front and loosened the VERY TIGHT plug and let the oil out and

retightened and flowed the new oil in - renewed the oil filter with a new blue Subie one.

Took all of 20 minutes - while I waited for the drain I waxed the 4 doors and the front hood.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
My 2012 really SUCKS for jacking-points (with a floor-jack). The only place I have found to use a floor-jack in the rear is on suspension-components.

I usually end up pulling out the supplied factory-jack to get it off the ground and even-then struggle to find a solid point for the jack-stands.
Good info, brucep. I wonder if the gen 5's have a more accessible single point like a x-member near rear bumper? That would enable single jack and placing stands under the factory jack lifting points. I do plan to put a trailer hitch on it. Anyone use their hitch as a jacking point?
 

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I am just wondering if it is hard to replace spark plugs on Subaru?
It depends on which Subaru (year, engine) you are asking about. On my 2006 Baja-turbo... the engine needs to be jacked to move it slightly to gain access to one of the plugs.

I looked carefully at my wife's 2012, and the COP (Coil On Plug) bolts are relatively easy to access. I assume the plugs would not be tough to replace on this one. (I have not actually done it yet at 20K miles)

I believe that the Gen4 and Gen5 have more room under the hood between the engine and wheel-wells which make plug-changing easier on these.
 

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I am referring to 2015 OB with 2.5 engine.


It depends on which Subaru (year, engine) you are asking about. On my 2006 Baja-turbo... the engine needs to be jacked to move it slightly to gain access to one of the plugs.

I looked carefully at my wife's 2012, and the COP (Coil On Plug) bolts are relatively easy to access. I assume the plugs would not be tough to replace on this one. (I have not actually done it yet at 20K miles)

I believe that the Gen4 and Gen5 have more room under the hood between the engine and wheel-wheels which make plug-changing easier on these.
 

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I'll offer you the 45k maintenance package for only $500, deal?!

45k is 6 oil changes, one air filter, and brake fluid change.

If air filter and brake fluid are about $100 then you're paying $500 for 6 oil changes. Or $85 per oil change.

If it included more fluids - front diff, power steering, coolant, rear diff....it starts to look appealing. Dealing with fluids is really annoying - containing it, cleaning it, recycling it....etc. To that end - fluid changes can be worth paying for if you want to limit maintenance.

Other items say "Inspect" rather than replace or perform. depends i guess how they interpret that, but nothing will be needed by then, the diff fluids often look fine at 100,000 miles on highway commuters. Maybe you can ask about how often they replace the inspection items - generally speaking that stuff does not ever need replaced that early. So it becomes very subjective...

i've jacked up via the hitch before. don't know if it's a good idea or not, truthfully i doubt it's designed, tested for that and I'd guess that's probably prohibited by the seller of the hitch if asked. i don't make a habit of it, but i've done it.
 

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Didn't know your skill level...I'll assume high.

$600 is not outrageous...some have been quoted $2200. It will be easier to sell with dealer service records.
It is probably worth it for the tire rotation :) Do they include wheel balance with rotation? Personally, I do not allow anyone to touch my car. Do you trust them? If so, why? Will they actually change your cabin filter? Will they use 0w20 synthetic oil instead of cheapest bulk 10w30? Will they not over-fill your oil by a quart possibly ruining your engine/seals? Will they not try to rip you off and lie to you everytime you go in?

The Diff service intervals are Inspection - not fluid Replacement. The Diffs use standard drain and fill plugs...you *might* be able to get to them without jacking the car. The car needs to be level for this so you would have to jack the car at all 4 corners...Or drive the front up on Rhino Ramps and jack the 2 back corners and place on jack stands.
 

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... The Diffs use standard drain and fill plugs...
For Subaru REAR differential, they are not very 'standard' .... I have $1000s worth of tools and do not have a 13mm square which is the proper tool for the job. A 1/2 inch drive ratchet is *close* but smaller than 13mm and has been known to strip-out the plug if it is too tight.

To me, a 'standard' differential plug is a rubber one which pops out with a screwdriver.... just suck out the old fluid and add fresh.... but that is not on a Subaru.

-------
The FRONT transaxle on my subie is a T70 torx.... again, not a common tool in everyones toolbox. Perhaps the 2015 has something different for the differential which is separate from the CVT.
 

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Didn't know your skill level...I assume high.

$600 is not outrageous...some have been quoted $2200. It will be easier to sell with dealer service records.
easier to sell to who? I've rarely done dealer maintenance (usually DIY), and never had any issue selling on craigslist for much more than a dealer would have ever given on trade-in.

I've had turbos for the past ~15 years.. saved ~$60 per oil change (buy synthetic yourself vs. @ the dealer).. it adds up.
 

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Service-reconds mean NOTHING at trade-in.... I have traded several vehicles and had 3-inch thick folder of EVERYTHING ever done to the vehicle over the past 150K miles. If something needs replaced- it gets replaced. I take no chances with reliability/safety.

In the end, they hardly even glance at all the records and it does not change trade-in value in any way.
 

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Dealer service records are an asset for top-dollar resale.....
I disagree. Sold 3 vehicles in the past 4 years and it's never been a factor. I have exceeded the prices from KBB and Edmunds, and again, saved mucho $$ doing most (but not all) service myself.

Much better to save that $$ and invest in a good detailing before private-party sale. *that* is what (incorrectly) makes most buyers think a car is well cared for.
 

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Service records are a big deal for private party sale- they add a lot of value regardless of whether it is a stack of dealer receipts or a handwritten logbook of DIY work.

They don't do anything for trade-ins though. The dealer isn't going to pay that level of a premium in the first place.
 

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The Stealer can charge a premium if the car has dealer records....
They will always try and low-ball any trade. they make all their money selling used cars and ripping people off in the service department. Internet competition has made new car sales nearly unprofitable. Stealers will lose money on new car sales just to make the sale and then rip you off in the service department. The sales/finance department also tries to rip people off at time of delivery...Preying on weakness - on their excitement. A Stealer tried to sell a colleague of mine a LoJack package at time of delivery...For $2000. She got up and walked out in complete disgust.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
I'm a believer in service records. I keep my own log and receipts. I just sold a vehicle private party to get the outback and 4 of 5 prospective buyers were looking for dealer or shop records. My self maintenance records are good but they wanted more to pay asking.

Back to jacking. I plan on rotating every oil change so ease of jacking/ all 4 off the ground is important
 
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