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1997 Outback 2.5L
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Discussion Starter #1
My 97 Outback leaks coolant after running for a few miles. I can see the coolant coming out of somewhere near the radiator below the upper radiator hose, especially visible underneath a black plastic cylinder component.

I don't know what this round part is and have a picture with the part circled in red. The part has two slim hoses running into the engine. Does the coolant leak have anything to do with this part?
 

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01 Outback H6 VDC, 97 GT wgn w/ ej22, 98 OBW w/ej22
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1,401 Posts
charcoal canister. it captures fuel vapors to protect the environment.
 

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1997 Outback 2.5L
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6 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
So it can't be this one to cause coolant leak. The bottom half of this canister is all wet. Then I have to guess that the radiator has cracked and sprayed coolant. Is it easy to do a pressure test on the radiator?

charcoal canister. it captures fuel vapors to protect the environment.
 

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06 Outback 2.5i, 05 Outback Limited
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856 Posts
So it can't be this one to cause coolant leak. The bottom half of this canister is all wet. Then I have to guess that the radiator has cracked and sprayed coolant. Is it easy to do a pressure test on the radiator?
With the proper tool, yes. I believe O'reilly rents a pressure tester.
 

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Car: 2008 Tribeca, 2010 LGT, Sold: 2005 XT Limited
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Or just get the car to temp and look for it to spray.
 

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Onyx, 2008 LL Bean 3.0R and 2017 Honda Civic Hatchback Sport Touring
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^^+1 Just be careful and wear some eye protection. I'd look at the hose ends and their clamps as well.
 

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1997 Outback 2.5L
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6 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Warmed up the car a moment ago and popped up the hood. Now I saw where the problem is. Right at the front-edge opposite to the upper hose, it's spraying happily. Time for a new radiator.:banghead:

Anybody know how good a quality the after-market radiator at O'reilly is? It's from Murray Heat Transfer.

Murray Heat Transfer 432536 - Radiator | O'Reilly Auto Parts


Or just get the car to temp and look for it to spray.
 

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2000 Outback Limited, Dual Range 5 Speed
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904 Posts
Is it the plastic tank, if so when you pull it check the condition of your core, are the fins good and don't see any signs of collect leaks, if all is good you can just get the tank replaced and the radiator cleaned out, a good rad shop will tell you how blocked it was and also give you a better idea of the expected life of it.
 

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06 Outback 2.5i, 05 Outback Limited
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856 Posts
Warmed up the car a moment ago and popped up the hood. Now I saw where the problem is. Right at the front-edge opposite to the upper hose, it's spraying happily. Time for a new radiator.:banghead:

Anybody know how good a quality the after-market radiator at O'reilly is? It's from Murray Heat Transfer.

Murray Heat Transfer 432536 - Radiator | O'Reilly Auto Parts
I replaced my radiator last summer when I was in south TX with a radiator from O'Reilly. 110* with the A/C running and my temp gauge never wavered.

I agree that there are times when replacing the end caps are a good move, but depending on the mileage, you might as well just replace the whole thing. It's quick, easy, and it'll probably last the life of the car.
 

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03 H6 OBW & 06 WRX Sportwagon
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at that age, I'd think a good quality aftermarket radiator would be a good way to go.

I think there's an ebay seller, maybe starts with an M,that folks have good luck with?
 

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1997 Outback 2.5L
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6 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
The car has 166k miles, so it has some ages. The radiator might be original. I will go for a new after-market one. Thanks all for your contribution.
 

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03 H6 OBW & 06 WRX Sportwagon
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The car has 166k miles, so it has some ages. The radiator might be original. I will go for a new after-market one. Thanks all for your contribution.
if original, get new hoses and clamps too. read up on 'burping' and proper filling of the coolant system. IF you replace the thermostat, get OEM or OEM-style ONLY. known problems with the smaller aftermarket stats.
 

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2000 Outback Limited, Dual Range 5 Speed
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Mine 2000 outback, had the tank replaced as a new rad could only be sourced at $600.00, for $200 I had the tank replaced, radiator cleaned and flow tested before and after cleaning and was only %5 blocked.

By the way you should give the cavity between the rad and the condenser a good clean, I think I removed about 2kgs of dirt, grass, leaves, and dead bugs, from there.
 

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1997 Outback 2.5L
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Discussion Starter #14
Spent most day today to have the radiator replaced after bought a Murry radiator from O'Reily. Unfortunately I spent more time on removing/installing the transmission oil cooler hoses than on anything else. The space is quite tight and made it hard to work on the cooler hoses.

Other than the radiator, I also took the time to replace the upper/lower hoses, both transmission-cooler hoses, and the thermostat. I got the thermostat from Subaru dealer.

After refilling the coolant, I purged the air in the system as much as I can. So far no more coolant leak and hope it will hold for several years.
 

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2000 Outback Limited, Dual Range 5 Speed
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As a side note those of us with a manual, when removing the fans they can be dropped out through the bottom of the engine bay really easily even with the radiator hoses still connected, do the one furthest from the bottom hose first and the closest second.
 

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2001 Legacy 2.5
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450 Posts
That's good. As I've mentioned in some previous posts, our cars don't need the OEM coolant. In fact, I think my HGs have lasted as long as they have due to me dumping the OEM coolant when I bought the car.
 
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