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2013 XV Crosstrek
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Discussion Starter #1
Thought I'd go change the oil on my '05 Outback XT and like an idiot, without thinking, I drained the ATF. Did not realize the engine oil was under a diaper until I saw purple like fluid coming out and thinking... Hmmm that doesn't look like oil to me. Anyway, I investigated further and saw "oil filter" written on a plastic diaper piece, when upon removing, I saw the small and tall oil pan. D'oh!!!

So, I guess I know how to change the tranny fluid. :) My question here is, since I've never changed tranny fluid before on any of my cars and especially on my first Subaru, where do I refill it? Do I have to go through that tiny dipstick that one uses to check the level?

Also, when I did finally remove the oil pan bolt, it did not have a crush washer on it. Is that normal from the factory? I bought one when I bought a filter so it has one now, but it was strange that the bolt did not have one on it to begin with.

Jay
 

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The tranny is refilled through the dipstick hole.

It seems like Subaru paints the oil pan after the drain plug and crush washer is installed. The crush washer looks like it is part of the drain plug. Look closely and you will see it.
 

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'04 OB Wagon
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Crush washer

Jay,

Like Mericet said, the set up was painted after assembly and the washer should be there. For my first oil change, I had to use an X-acto knife and really work at separating the washer and bolt due to the paint. Please be really careful when using the X-acto and wear goggles in case the blade snaps off in the process! Good luck.

Kurt
 

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'04 OB Wagon
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By the way...

Jay,

When I got the new crush washer on the drain plug I was really impressed with myself. I put the filter on and poured in a couple new quarts of Castrol GTX and ... I forgot to put the drain plug back in! What a waste and what a mess! D'oh!

The moral of the story is obvious. I've changed oil dozens of times in the past and this was a first. Put your plug back in first or you too will be running all over NJ looking for more oil before the stores close.

Kurt
 

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SubaruOutback.org Founder
2018 Outback Limited 2.5L - 105,000+ miles
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Jay be very careful when refilling the ATF!!! Take into consideration that the torque converter has to be drained of ATF seperately, that is if you didn't know. I've know of too many people who would drain the ATF out of the tranny pan and either not know about the torque converter or just not realize that it has to be drained seperately. They go to fill their ATF up by the owner's manual standards (usually about 10 quarts when all they usually need is 4 quarts :eek: ) and first completely overfill their tranny and usually blow it soon after.

I'd just say to make sure to consult your dealer first before doing anything you may not know about, but if you know what you are doing have at it.
 

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2013 XV Crosstrek
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Discussion Starter #6
Re; tranny oil: Well I was thoughtful enough to measure what was coming out and just under 4 quarts came out so I gather just under 4 quarts should go in. But of course, I don't have Tranny oil lying around so I'll have to go pick up some. The manual recommends an ATF Type J oil and none of the local auto shops carry this type, it's all Dextron III or Type F so I'll have to stop by a Subby dealership and pick up some.

Re; the crush washer: well, if that is true, then it now has 2 washers on it. I added 1 qt, checked for leaks and finished up the oil... No leaks. I'll keep an eye out on it.

Subaru sent me some kind of promotion to get free 3/36k added security maintenance plan so I think the first paid oil change I get is at 7500 miles at which I can point out to subby that it has 2 washers on it....

Jay
 

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Wow, scarey mistake to make, hope it all works out OK.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Situation normal! Although it was an $18 mistake (ATF fluid from the dealer is like $4.XX per quart).... you live and you learn I guess. I put in about 3.25 quarts in and went to go get some groceries and run errands. Then I came back and followed the manual's instructions for measureing the tranny fluid with a warm engine. I added just a tad more and checked my motor oil level too. Then I put the engine cover back on.

Fortunately, I have another car and barring that, I bike to work and can generally bicycle everywhere I want to go. One thing good about NJ is that I never have to go far for anything, everything is within reasonable cycling distance.

Jay
 

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Glad all OK, by the way that's my favorite posting topic ever on here I think! hehe :D
 

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Friendly Subaru Dealer, ,
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If I'm correct, damage done to the tranny like that isn't covered under warrenty. We had another Jiffy Lube Incident this past week, where they drained the tran. fluid, and gave the guy a few extra quarts of oil. Now Jiffy Lube owes the guy parts and labor for a 5G transmission. Be careful.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Is this that common for Subarus?

I'm knowledgeable enough to realize that the purple liquid coming out of the pan wasn't motor oil. :)

I would imagine it being problematic for 4 qts of tranny oil to be drained and then Jiffy Lube trying to add 4 qts to an already fairly full oil pan. If one was to remove the oil filter before draining the motor oil, how much oil would come out? It shouldn't fully drain out but I'd imagine more oil than usual might throw a few warning signs to the mechanic.

jay
 

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Friendly Subaru Dealer, ,
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Jay H said:
Is this that common for Subarus?

I'm knowledgeable enough to realize that the purple liquid coming out of the pan wasn't motor oil. :)
jay
Surprisingly, yes. It's more a matter of Joe High School Dropout, Chief Jiffy Lube Tech, thinking that because he knows how to change the oil on the *****in' 87 Camero, that he's some kind of mechanical wiz, than it is difficult to understand that purple is NOT the color of oil.
 

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Luke_Monroe said:


Surprisingly, yes. It's more a matter of Joe High School Dropout, Chief Jiffy Lube Tech, thinking that because he knows how to change the oil on the *****in' 87 Camero, that he's some kind of mechanical wiz, than it is difficult to understand that purple is NOT the color of oil.
What...I can't say *****in' ? Oh well.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Just an interesting aside: I am an avid kayaker, and on a different board, you cant say flatwater because of the word between the 'fla" and the "er" so it is commonly refered to on that board as

flathingyer and salthingyer

:)

Jay
 

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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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this sounds like a good, gentle, relatively cheap reminder of how those two nemeses of the mechanic, Murphy and hubris, are always lurking just over your shoulder, waiting to bite you in the butt (i can say that, right??) the moment your attn strays.....

don't feel bad, i've done stuff every bit as stupid in the past month. i sometimes think my mantra shd be "you never REALLY know it until you;ve taken it apart and reassembled more than once..."

if you ever do have to re-use a drain plug washer: load up the threads with heavy, high temp grease. does wonders to stop motor oil from getting past, even on stuff like Fiats and MGs.

bw
 

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Gallery Ninja, ,
2004 Outback "Bluebaru" & 2005 Outback XT
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On a similar but much more pain in the butt idiot move on my part:

In a rush to move and install an engine in my truck (a larger and heavier one) I did not think to replace the stock engine mounts. Well, long story short, yank old motor out, 30 mins later install new motor, pop in the engine bolts and trailer to new location.

Looking at truck a few days later, "what the hay?" Engine oil pan sitting on crossmember (which eliminates starting engine)

So, now I have a heavy engine sitting directly on the two parts I have to unbolt. Dang it. Course, some of the bolts really only have access with the engine out. I make do, and spend several hours unbolting a total of 6 bolts while under the constant questioning of curious neighbors.

I replace them with aftermarket poly mounts which are near rigid and work great. Big headache and one more "cost" to add to my project.

____

Point illustrated by everyone who storied here: Plan Plan Plan ahead!

Oh and hey Jay, at least your Tranny fluid is now changed! (even if it was fine.)
 

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I've got one for you guys along these lines.

I helped a friend remove, and rebuild his motor. We were about 75% done when we called it quits for the night. He decided to "finish it it himself" the next day (I was at work) rather than wait for me to help him after 5pm.

He bolted everything (he though) up, added fluids. Started the engine. He called my on my cell wondering why the engine was running so rough and noisy. He also thought it was running hot. I gave him some troubleshooting things to check, but reccomended he just turn it off, and that I would look at it in 4 hours when I was off work.

After I hung up with him, I was mulling it over in my mind, what could be causing the engine to run so rough and noisy and hot. I was thinking back to all the parts we installed, how we installed them, and what was "laying around" waiting to be installed. I remembered something important was missing (wasn't laying around to be re-installed).

I called him right back. I asked him if he remembered to locate, and then install the oil pickup tube and screen. All I heard from the other end of the phone was a stream of exlpletives.

Sure enough...that was the problem.

http://photos.random00.com/thumbnails.php?album=53

He only ran the motor for about 10-15 minutes, but thats the damage caused by no oil in a newly assembled motor.
 

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YIKES!
All this reminds me I need to pull all four bolts off my pickup's water pump one at a time and Permatex the threads. Don't want coolant creeping out of the water jacket.
 

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Gallery Ninja, ,
2004 Outback "Bluebaru" & 2005 Outback XT
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Best example yet Random! Your photos of the exhaust welding, rather your commentary on it is halarious. Did you actually have to pay for that? It's one thing to do that yourself and another to have that done professionally.

Looks like you have had your share of mis-fortune.
 

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90% of those photos come from my friends car. He's the one who's had the bad luck. I've tried to steer him straight, but he keeps trying to take shortcuts/save a buck and that's what it gets him.

That's why I posted them, so hopefully folks will realize that the cheapest shop isn't the BEST shop. Rebulding a motor in 4 hours might be possible, but it's not "reccomended".
 
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