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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hello all. There's a cold engine ticking noise from my wife's 1999 Legacy Outback wagon which has the 2.5 engine (XFJXV02.5CAC). Automatic transmission, 212k km (133k miles). Maintained properly in 6 years she has owned it. I've only ever driven I4s, and I sure don't like this sound. I've uploaded a Youtube video of the noise at the bottom of this post.

Here's some details. The engine makes a loud ticking noise when it first starts up. It sounds to me like the valve train, but I'm not a mechanic and have also read posts on piston slap and timing chain issues. The sound is much quieter once the engine is at operating temperature. Our neighbourhood is somewhat hilly and when the engine is cold, the sound is particularly loud when the car is travelling downhill and I let my foot off the gas as I coast toward a stop sign. In contrast, the ticking is much softer if the engine is copld but under load, e.g, I've got my foot on the gas going forward or travelling up an incline. As far as I know, the engine and head gasket are original.

We're thinking of going on a road trip this fall, and I'd like to know asap whether this is something that needs repair, or is just the way these engines operate.

Any response are greatly appreciated.
Thanks.

 

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Sounds normal to me.

Subaru H4's are noisy when they are cold. Pretty sure they are all the same when they get older.
 
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Redilyn
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