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Hey guys, please redirect me or remove post if I'm posting in the wrong place.

I'm buying a 1999 Subaru Impreza Sportswagon AWD 5sp Manual, I'm in Australia if that matters. Owner says car is sound mechanically only problems are the indicator blinks too fast, and taillights don't work properly. From what I've researched I have to replace the flash relay thingamajig and clean the earth's and if that doesn't work check out the wiring schematics and spend some time hunkering down. Ive been told to check the head gasket for leaks due to it being a common fault. I am trying to put together a checklist of what to look for but I am not great with cars.
 

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1st check for voltage at the bulb plug in connectors.
 

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In my US experience, a fast blinker means one bulb is burned out (or possible wrong bulb installed?). Here's a link to some manuals that may help. Subaru Factory Service Manuals (FSM) - Every Model - USDM/EU
But it's also a 21 year old car, so... you may be in for a boatload of trouble. A lot depends on mileage and price, too.
 
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In my US experience, a fast blinker means one bulb is burned out (or possible wrong bulb installed?). Here's a link to some manuals that may help. Subaru Factory Service Manuals (FSM) - Every Model - USDM/EU
But it's also a 21 year old car, so... you may be in for a boatload of trouble. A lot depends on mileage and price, too.
It has 226,000 Km on the odometer and he is selling it for 1500 AUD, but I've managed to talk him down to 1300. I was going to pay for a pre-purchase inspection for a guy local to the area to check it out before I think about bargaining and if it comes with any unknown faults I could use that as a bargaining chip maybe or it could convince me to just walk away. But the inspection is 200$, which is considerable but at the same time I'm not sure. He said the previous owner was his grandmother who owned it from new and only really drove it around town and the occasional long distance journey. He has owned it for a year and has just bought a new 4x4 and it's just sitting in his drive way. I'm 20, he's 18.
 

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On the bulb, I would wonder if someone tried to do an LED upgrade..... or as was mentioned above, wrong bulb or flasher unit.
 

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It has 226,000 Km on the odometer and he is selling it for 1500 AUD, but I've managed to talk him down to 1300. I was going to pay for a pre-purchase inspection for a guy local to the area to check it out before I think about bargaining and if it comes with any unknown faults I could use that as a bargaining chip maybe or it could convince me to just walk away. But the inspection is 200$, which is considerable but at the same time I'm not sure. He said the previous owner was his grandmother who owned it from new and only really drove it around town and the occasional long distance journey. He has owned it for a year and has just bought a new 4x4 and it's just sitting in his drive way. I'm 20, he's 18.
That's 140K miles and $925 USD. Certainly cheap enough. At that mileage (and others here are far more expert) I believe the timing belt should have been done at 100K miles, and there is always the head gasket issue. And CV joints. The $200 inspection sounds like money well spent, but still no guarantees. If the 1999 engines are similar to the later EJ models, they are interference engines where if the timing belt breaks, the valves will collide with the pistons and you will hurt.

But others are much more experienced with these models. You may want to post a link to this discussion in the Gen 1 forum. That's about all I got. HTH
 

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on the center of the engine top should be a molded stamp: EJ20 , EJ22 , EJ25 ?

and it may have a larger build plate on the shock tower with a longer engine number, which would be handy to figure out what it needs now or in the future.

is it a native Aussie car, or was it used in Japan ?

what does it have for Kms / Miles ?
 

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Discussion Starter #10
on the center of the engine top should be a molded stamp: EJ20 , EJ22 , EJ25 ?

and it may have a larger build plate on the shock tower with a longer engine number, which would be handy to figure out what it needs now or in the future.

is it a native Aussie car, or was it used in Japan ?

what does it have for Kms / Miles ?
Hey EagleEye, thank you for the reply Ive been busy getting back. It's a EJ20 motor, I'm not sure on the specific submodel it is but it has a 20 on the top. The car has a few problems, at 226,000 km. Front left indicator from drivers position blinks fast, rear right indicator doesn't work at all, transmission has problems getting into reverse, need to pump the clutch which I think is a result of low transmission fluid but could be broken gear teeth or the clutch,
 

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140,000 miles to those metric-ly challenged, (like me).
good news = pokey EJ20 did not have systemic head gasket failures like the EJ25.

@seagrass etc, is there a better forum for such cars ? (possibly locally popular, in the land of wild emus )
 

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140,000 miles to those metric-ly challenged, (like me).
good news = pokey EJ20 did not have systemic head gasket failures like the EJ25.

@seagrass etc, is there a better forum for such cars ? (possibly locally popular, in the land of wild emus )
Sorry for my lack of etiquette on the site. I'm hoping to become more active on here over time. The car seems to be going well surprisingly. I think I got a deal. The electrical problems were solved by changing the bulbs giving the sockets a bit of clr and then everything was good. Indicator is back to normal, only problem is the gear stick ball joint? Is broken and that's why the stick travels like it's in neutral while in gear. I'm not sure where to get the ball joint. Probably check local Subi dealer
 

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now I wonder if you just take up the trim around the shifter and you will see something obviously loose or a nut missing.

and I would hope there are quality used parts dealers that are dedicated to subarus. (and knowledge of them). = outside of the new car stealerships .
 

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Sorry I have come in late to this thread, I have been away enjoying the Australian Outback for the last ten days or so.

You have got a good deal on this vehicle and if it is a genuine two owner vehicle it will serve you well for many years to come. The head gaskets in the EJ20 motors rarely have a problem and do but suffer from the problems of the EJ25 motors.

The hard to select gears could be a clutch starting to fail so be aware of how the symptoms progress.

The gear shifter “sloppiness” problem is a common one and can be fixed by replacing the gear shift knuckle or you can repair it using some 13mm low pressure irrigation hose (do a google search to find procedure). You need to get the correct knuckle for your vehicle and following is an eBay link that shows you what you are looking for BUT it may not be the correct part for your model.


Good to hear you got the indicators fixed.

Let me know if you have any other specific questions.

Seagrass
 
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Sorry I have come in late to this thread, I have been away enjoying the Australian Outback for the last ten days or so.

You have got a good deal on this vehicle and if it is a genuine two owner vehicle it will serve you well for many years to come. The head gaskets in the EJ20 motors rarely have a problem and do but suffer from the problems of the EJ25 motors.

The hard to select gears could be a clutch starting to fail so be aware of how the symptoms progress.

The gear shifter “sloppiness” problem is a common one and can be fixed by replacing the gear shift knuckle or you can repair it using some 13mm low pressure irrigation hose (do a google search to find procedure). You need to get the correct knuckle for your vehicle and following is an eBay link that shows you what you are looking for BUT it may not be the correct part for your model.


Good to hear you got the indicators fixed.

Let me know if you have any other specific questions.

Seagrass
There is lots of travel in the gear stick. I bought the gear stick bushings from the Subaru dealership but am unsure how to replace it, having a roadworthy mechanic come this afternoon to have a look, going to ask him if he can replace it
 
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