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2009 Outback XT Limited MT
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9 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Just bought an 09 OBXT w/manual trans. It was displaying overheating problems and advertised as needing head gaskets. When I began to examine it I found that the thermostat wasn’t opening, so I replaced it. Bled air, temp gauge held at 9:00. Hooray. Went for a test drive, engine ran great then suddenly overheated. Ok, that’s what I bargained for.

Pulled the engine and in the process discovered turbo impeller shaft broken on exhaust side. Uh oh. I carefully examined the oil as I drained it, found just the tiniest bit of super fine metallic glitter in it. Nothing in the oil pan, but there are some grain of sand sized bits of something adhered to the windage tray. Found 3 or 4 little metallic bits about the size of a pencil lead sitting on the inside of the intake valve heads, and another 8 or 10 the same size in the oil filter that I cut open. There is very light scoring on the cam caps, not near as bad as the FXT that I built last year. Engine has 130k on it. Oil feed to turbo had the expected clogged screen.

I don’t have unlimited funds, but I also don’t want to do this again in 6 months. What is the consensus here? I can clean everything up, reseal engine, replace turbo, do a bunch of oil changes in a row and keep my fingers crossed, or just bite the bullet and get on OE short block as I did for our FXT. Anyone have any success stories going the less expensive route in a similar situation?
 

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Outback 2011 3.6R Premium
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1,341 Posts
Sounds like you caught it before catastrophic damage was done.

If you have a heavy throttle foot, getting a new short block is probably the best thing to do.

On the other hand if you drive “normally” a good clean and rebuild is possibly all that is needed.

Seagrass
 

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2009 Outback XT Limited MT
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9 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Thanks. I think I’ve decided to split the case and check out the bearings.
 

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05 GT wagon, 09 Spec B, 18 3.6R Outback
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484 Posts

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Registered
2009 Outback XT Limited MT
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9 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Dodged a bullet. Split the case today. The crank is beautiful. We will get everything clean, measure it all up, hone the cylinders, polish crank, replace rings and bearing and make it live again.
 
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