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Hi I am looking into buying my first Subie. I am looking for a 06-09 Outback. I am just looking for some buying tips such as getting an Outback with less than 100k and have to worry about replacing the headgaskets or look for an Outback with the head gaskets and timing belt changed. What are some other things I should be asking when I look into buying the Outback?

Thanks for reading!
Chris
 

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2005 Legacy GT wagon 5MT Limited
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320 Posts
The three engines are vastly different. What are your desires re performance, reliability, and cost of ownership?
 

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2008 Outback 2.5
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957 Posts
By now, a car with close to 100k or 10 years old will need to have the timing belt changed or you will be sitting on a financial time bomb and a potentially expiring engine. Non-leaking headgaskets are good but won't guarantee they won't fail. With many, it's just a matter of time but the failure on this generation is (usually) not catastrophic and often won't require immediate attention if you don't have the funds. It will just be a very slow weeping of oil that becomes an annoyance. It's also a sign to save up to have the job done. The rear shocks are probably toast but can be replaced at not too bad a cost. The lower control arm rear bushings are probably bad but again, they can be saved up for replacing. The inner CV boot often tears and spits grease all over the place (again, not a sign of immediate disaster, just a sign to start saving to have them replaced and the replacement/reboot job is pretty simple).

For the first 8-10 years and 100-130k miles, for me, there has been virtually zero "fix-it" costs. Then for a few years, there were a decent number of replacement costs. Then if you get them all addressed, you should have another long span of very little cost (hopefully up through 200k miles).
 

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03 H6 OBW & 06 WRX Sportwagon
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17,704 Posts
Find a subaru-friendly mechanic near you, it's good for 2-3 reasons;

1. He may have a customer that wants to sell a car

2, You can ask him about a prepurchase inspection of any car you are considering

3. you'll have a shop for any work that needs immediate attention (like the timing belt system service mentioned above).
 
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