Subaru Outback Forums banner

1 - 13 of 13 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
80 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Anyone have a picture of the block heater plug location for the 3.6L. I've got the factory service manual (3.6L & 2.5L) and the block heater manual for the 2.5L. Both seem a little off. To me it looks like the plug location would be next to the passenger exhaust and require a 17mm hex key on what looks like a 30mm+ threadsize plug. But all the instructions say 14mm hex key.

I'm wondering if it's a typo as the 2.5L takes a 14mm hex or something.

Image of 2.5L location attached.

497814



and image of 3.6L (1sec getting phone) - the big plug above (not behind) the rubber hose is where I am thinking the block heater goes.
497815




Also looks like I have to drop the exhaust on both sides to get it to come down enough. Dang.
 

·
Premium Member
2016 Outback Premium 2.5 CVT w/EyeSight+SRVD
Joined
·
7,257 Posts
Download the installation instructions for the 3.6 block heater, free, from STIS.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
80 Posts
Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
3.6 block heater, free, from STIS.
Have a link? I'm not good with random acronyms. I'll post the documents I have as attachments. Posted.
Edit:
I just figured out this means, "Subaru Technical Information System (http://techinfo.subaru.com/)"


to install that you are going to have to lower the exhaust... fun
Can't see that link without buying. Do you have a yearly subscription or something? Can I secretly ask you to pm me? hahhahaha



Edit:
Ah, looks like technical bulletins and accessories are free. Payment is only required for the FSM, which I already have. It is still a shame they show the install for the 2.5L only :(

497890
 

Attachments

·
Registered
2015 3.6R Limited w/ES
Joined
·
3,394 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
80 Posts
Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
I really appreciate the explanation and the walk-through. I think we are looking at the same page and the document corresponds with the screenshot I posted earlier and I think the website link corresponds with the screenshot I posted earlier.

when you look at the pictures, are you seeing two exhaust ports or are you seeing three exhaust ports? Because I’m only seeing two in the picture; meanwhile, the layout of the 3.6 L is a slightly different. I don’t have the bolt hole in the same location and instead there’s an oil cooler.

I’m pretty sure it’s that big bolt in my post, I was just curious if anyone actually had an image or diagram of it on the 3.6 L

This is what I see
497938

497939

497940
 

·
Premium Member
2016 Outback Premium 2.5 CVT w/EyeSight+SRVD
Joined
·
7,257 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
80 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
This one, which you posted earlier, is correct for the 3.6 engine. You can tell by the bottom-mounted oil filter and sandwich oil cooler, if nothing else. https://www.subaruoutback.org/attachments/a091sfj001-pdf.497887/
EAGLE EYES! Nice job. I had seen the foil, but never saw the plug before. I see it now. Thank you. Totally is that big plug up there after the 90deg bend in the coolant / oil heat exchanger.

I'll update when parts arrive and are installed. Likely 2 weeks. I used one of those silly coupons online to get the heater cheaper.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
80 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
I'll post the pitfalls of this shortly. But long story short - this job is worth about $350 at the dealership to not have to do it yourself.

Pitfalls
  • Must remove left and right exhaust
    • Means need new exhaust gaskets
    • Exhaust weighs like 150lbs, so recommend extra jack stands to support the far end while you take it out or you can use your feet / knees to hold it while your hands hold the other side
  • Exhaust header nuts are on tight - approx 100 ft-lbs, expect to have a good impact gun
  • Exhaust 02 sensors must be unclipped
    • ADDITIONALLY THERE ARE WIRE MANAGEMENT CLIPS THAT MUST BE REMOVED or the wires will snag
  • It's 17mm Hex not 14mm on the 3.6L
    • Means the tool in the kit doesn't fit
    • Recommend buying 17mm hex allen key and grinding a 2" long piece to use with a wrench
    • I used hex key sockets and a shallow 3/8" drive ratchet (it sucked and does not fit well)
  • Coolant drain plug has a thread sealer on it - means 120ft-lbs to 150ft-lbs breaking force
    • Normally this isn't an issue but there is no room to get a breaker bar due to the exhaust flange and stud locations, so you'll need a low profile ratchet and the pole from your jack
  • Someone on the internet said you could quickly swap plugs without draining coolant due to the vacuum in the engine bay.
    • No chance, you've got to drain the coolant. Approx. 5 quarts comes out including if you do radiator (total system is 7.5 quarts)
    • Buy 2 gallons
  • Block heater is 45mm or 1-3/4" but there is 0% chance you will get a socket on it
    • You need large pliers like Knipex to snug it back in
      • No you cannot use a large adjustable wrench, yes I did try several versions
      • Crows foot attachment might work, but I couldn't find one made of high quality steel
    • Good news is you can feel the plug bottom out around 60-70 ft-lbs so you actually don't really need a torque wrench for this one

Overall super excited to have a block heater. But it was a journey for sure. I'll post pics sometime this week.
 

·
Registered
2017 2.5i Premium Lapis Blue
Joined
·
4,352 Posts
Anybody know offhand if there is room to change the cord on the block heater without removing the exhaust? No problems with mine at all yet (and I use it extensively), but often the cord is the first thing to go bad and it gets to be a pain patching them together after a while. I don't think you can buy just the cord separately but at some point I would consider buying a new heater and just changing the cord if mine got bad enough.

I start using my block heater regularly once the temperature gets down below 32F and it is often plugged in about 23 hours a day on days that I work. I plug it in when I get to work and again as soon as I get home and it stays on until I go to work again. I work 12 hour shifts so it doesn't make sense to ever let it cool down. A guy from my neighborhood asked me recently if my Outback was a diesel because he sees it plugged in all the time. :D
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
80 Posts
Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
You should be able to change the plug without removing the exhaust on the 3.6L barely. I think the 2.5L has more room and the plug can easily be changed. I recommend the car off for 2 hours first. My exhaust was only 180F though so gloves would work.

On a side note my block heater makes no noise -_-
I tested the ohms and it's 33.8 ohms resistance. I guess I'll have to wait for a cold day then measure the temperatures. I am used to block heaters making sizzling noises. I guess it's good that water is not boiling inside my engine? But at the same time, I am skeptical if this thing is putting out enough power. Lot of work for who the heck knows what. Also the costs to DIY by the books on this is pretty high.

2x exhaust gaskets ($28 each)
1x Block heater ($130 to $150)
2x Gallons coolant ($45, or $22/each)
Tools: $30 (allen key and large pliers, I returned the sockets for $45)
1x high temp gasket maker ($7)

Approx. $200 - $250 to DIY by the books. I didn't replace my exhaust gaskets.
 

·
Registered
2017 2.5i Premium Lapis Blue
Joined
·
4,352 Posts
On a side note my block heater makes no noise -_-
I tested the ohms and it's 33.8 ohms resistance. I guess I'll have to wait for a cold day then measure the temperatures. I am used to block heaters making sizzling noises. I guess it's good that water is not boiling inside my engine? But at the same time, I am skeptical if this thing is putting out enough power. Lot of work for who the heck knows what. Also the costs to DIY by the books on this is pretty high.
I can hear mine in less than a minute after plugging it in. I guess it's sort of a sizzling noise. Shortly after getting mine installed I plugged it in through my Kill-A-Watt meter and it showed it at 430 watts. It's not a real high output heater but it works fairly well. At startup my coolant temperature is usually in the low to mid 70s, oil temp around 40, and it even gets the CVT fluid temp up about 15 degrees above the outside air temperature as long as it was plugged in for quite a while. Since I had my block heater installed I use the remote start a lot less.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
80 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
As promised, pictures and videos. Note: it's a 17mm hex on the 3.6L and a 14mm hex on the 2.5L



So the block heater works. It's just super quiet. I think the location on this car is excellent from an engineering point of view. The large amount of fluid helps dissipate the heat and limits the sizzling noise.

Seems around 2.5hr you get most of the benefit from the block heater. These temps were taken inside a garage with no wind. I'm not 100% sure on the garage air temperature, but the floor was around the 50's. It is snowing today. The temperature differential wasn't as high as I was expecting so I'm probably going to add a small 100 to 150w oil warmer pad. Other than that, the car warms up fast. After 4 hours plugged in it hit 118F (oil temp) before I could get out of the driveway. And then it sat at 130F oil temp for 1-2 minutes which I thought was odd, but ok. I didn't get a chance to read the coolant temps (no scan gauges).


TIME​
BLOCK
TEMPERATURE (F)​
DELTA FROM GARAGE (F)​
GARAGE
TEMPERATURE (F)​
OUTDOOR
TEMPERATURE (F)​
0​
65 (estimated)​
10​
55​
32​
60​
90​
35​
55​
32​
120​
96​
41​
55​
32​
180​
103​
48​
55​
32​
240​
105​
50​
55​
32​
 
1 - 13 of 13 Posts
Top