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2001 Outback Wagon 2.5l
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Hi,

Does anyone know what the Subaru rust and corrosion policy is and whether it extends to components like say, the wheels. My 2001 wagon has the machined finish mags and the salt in winter seems to be eating the metal finish like crazy.

I've noticed the newer models come with a wheels clear coat finish so someone in Subaru must be aware that this is a problem. Any ideas ?


Daniel
 

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Superb Moderator, ,
MY12 WRX, MY07 FXT
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As far as I know, it will not pertain to the wheels. And also the Subaru 'rust perforation' warranty is odd in itself. You can't have surface rust and get it fixed under warranty, it has to be rusted through the body panel. That is what I gather from looking in my policy and talking to other Suby owners.

I bought the Platinum package for paint/underbody protection which is a joke apparently, due to Subies not rusting through for many, many years. They will not repair small rust spots, it has to be through the metal. So I guess I wasted $750. When the wife bought her Baja, we got nothing but the wheels on the car and left:) . Brian
 

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'96 Outback 2.5L 4 cyl.
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26 Posts
Hi Daniel,

I have no clue about company warrenties, but I'm with you on the corrosion on the wheels. My '96 is getting kind of bad on all 4 and I hope it doesn't ruin my tires.
Does anybody reccommend affordable rims?

-andy
 

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'03 Outback H6-3.0 Black Granite Pearl, base model with cold weather package and cloth seats.
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1,060 Posts
winter rims

My solution has been to buy a set of winter tires on steel rims, and take the fancy aluminum wheels off each early winter.

Come spring, remove winter tires, clean well, spray paint any rust (removed) spots, and store for the warm season.

This way you can double both the life of the summer and winter tires, and greatly extend the visually appealing life of the factory wheels.

Make sure to get hub-centric wheels, and a set of wheel covers to keep the salt away from the hubs.
 

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02 OB sport, 2.5, 5MT, WRX seats/catback/rear bar, Hellas, Home Despot CAI and roof rack
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1,572 Posts
Andy--surface corrosion on the wheels won't harm tires.

and you can clean wheels up by masking tires with 2 layewrs of duct tape (or during next tire change) and having wheels blasted with some non-destructive media like plastic beads or walnut shells (latter is what military uses to strip paint off Al aircraft skins), following with sevl coats of good clear acrylic (better yet, have an auto bod shop spray em as their clear is worlds better than the spray can junk.)

Wilson's plan is a good one. for your 96, i think most 14 and 15" Sub wheels will fit, 13s might not clear brake caliper (this will be your biggest fitment issue as all Subies pre 05 use same bolt pattern, and newer brakes often won't clear smaller dia wheels that were used on earlier Subies (and thus likely finds in junqueyard or Ebay). or Tire Rack sells cheapie steel rims for most cars.
 

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'96 Outback 2.5L 4 cyl.
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26 Posts
thanks for the tip about cleaning up the rims. I think i'll just buy some new ones when the time comes.
Does anybody else have corrosion issues on their alluminum rims?

-andy
 

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Submod , ,
2000 BMW R1150gs
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3,012 Posts
Corrosion

Before leaving NY last summer I bought a 97 LOB. It had/has the same corrosion problem you are having. they look pretty bad but are sound. When I get into a bit more money I will probably buy some new rims.
A little dirty but you can see the corrosion around outer part of the rim. It actually looks better in the picture.
 

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Tokyo's between my toes
2001 Wintergreen Outback 5MT
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Can you wire-brush that stuff?
 

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'96 Outback 2.5L 4 cyl.
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Subhuman,

Those are kind of beat-up. Can you wire- brush them up or are you just going to leave'm as is 'till new ones?
 

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02 OB sport, 2.5, 5MT, WRX seats/catback/rear bar, Hellas, Home Despot CAI and roof rack
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i wouldn't use wire brush on alloy wheels unless it was brass bristle, and likely not even then. try "wet sanding" with a bucket and a Scotchbrite pad first, starting with a well worn one and going to newer and/or coarser as needed (you can get coarser ones at bldg supp or auto body shop supply.. and be ready to clear coat em pronto once you get em cleaned up or the corrosion will start over again. you could also paint em body color or satin black, esp if the corrosion dmg is still pretty visible.
 

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Submod , ,
2000 BMW R1150gs
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Outback Andy said:
Subhuman,

Those are kind of beat-up. Can you wire- brush them up or are you just going to leave'm as is 'till new ones?
Oh, I'll probably not try to mess with it too much until I get a new pair. I'll probably brush off the loose stuff but with out any kind of repair (if that's at all possible) I'll just have to wait until I save enough $$ for a nice new (or used) shinny :cool: set.
 

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When the wheels get bad on my '02, I'm going to wet sand and polish them out to 2000 grit and keep them waxed. A smooth aluminum surface looks great and won't corrode easily. It's the same treatment I give my motorcycle cases and wheels and I only put it up about 3 wks out of the year so it sees plenty of salt and water.
 

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Superb Moderator, ,
MY12 WRX, MY07 FXT
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I think when the protective coating goes bad, then all that pitting begins. Brian
 
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