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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all, I just purchased a 97 outback with 151000 mi. and I was thinking of switching to synthetic oil or possibly a synthetic blend? Anything you recommend for an older engine? I do have some of the dreaded piston slap that I have heard others talk about on here. I am also going to get the tranny oil changed right away. Any good suggestions on types of fluid to use for that? I also have the AT oil light coming on at startup. I just ran it thru the carwash and thats when the light came on! I read about one other member here who that happened to also. I know the previous owner used Penzoil non synthetic oil in all his oil changes. I am not expecting this car to be perfect with all the miles on it, but just hope I can keep up with the repairs without going broke. Thanks for any help.
 

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OBW H6 VDC, Tribeca, XT6
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Oil brand, type, weight doesn't matter, follow the owners manual. Any oil will get you to 250,000 miles, none will do it any better than the rest.

You would be much better to replace coolant, brake fluid, power steering fluid. Those are 15 years old and 150,000 miles.

There are countless oil discussions on here or google them, no point in starting another. value or chances of making 250,000 miles will not be found in this question though so it's basically a waste of time.
 

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I run Mobile Delvac 15-40 ...Napa oil filter .... :29:
 

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I simply cannot abide useless people.
2006 2.5i and 2002 3.0 wagons.
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12,305 Posts
Any API rated 5w30 will be fine for that engine.

ATF is DEX III type.
 

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1999 OBW/2004 OBW
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56 Posts
Hi all, I just purchased a 97 outback with 151000 mi. and I was thinking of switching to synthetic oil or possibly a synthetic blend? Anything you recommend for an older engine? I do have some of the dreaded piston slap that I have heard others talk about on here. I am also going to get the tranny oil changed right away. Any good suggestions on types of fluid to use for that? I also have the AT oil light coming on at startup. I just ran it thru the carwash and thats when the light came on! I read about one other member here who that happened to also. I know the previous owner used Penzoil non synthetic oil in all his oil changes. I am not expecting this car to be perfect with all the miles on it, but just hope I can keep up with the repairs without going broke. Thanks for any help.

I have a 99 with 175k it has a little bit of lifter tick occasionally. I put most of those miles on, and now I run a concoction of 2 quarts 10W-40 and 2.5 quarts 5w-30. I originally ran 5w-30 but I've noticed it likes the mixture a bit better, get better mileage, and the oil doesn't break down as quick or burn as much. At this point, unless it was rebuilt or at the least re-sealed I wouldn't consider synthetic oil. I've heard that it can be worse for an older engine. I may have some people that would disagree with that, but that is my opinion. If it had 30k, I would do it. I like the idea of running a year without needing an oil change. I can say the filter makes a difference. Spend the extra cash for decent filters. I think Subaru's probably are the best, but I use Purolator Pure1, and have been pleased with it's results.
 

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I have a 99 with 175k it has a little bit of lifter tick occasionally. I put most of those miles on, and now I run a concoction of 2 quarts 10W-40 and 2.5 quarts 5w-30. I originally ran 5w-30 but I've noticed it likes the mixture a bit better, get better mileage, and the oil doesn't break down as quick or burn as much. At this point, unless it was rebuilt or at the least re-sealed I wouldn't consider synthetic oil. I've heard that it can be worse for an older engine. I may have some people that would disagree with that, but that is my opinion. If it had 30k, I would do it. I like the idea of running a year without needing an oil change. I can say the filter makes a difference. Spend the extra cash for decent filters. I think Subaru's probably are the best, but I use Purolator Pure1, and have been pleased with it's results.
Run Mobile Delvac your next change ..... Say good bye to the tick
 

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'14 3.6R Outback
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Oil brand, type, weight doesn't matter, follow the owners manual. Any oil will get you to 250,000 miles, none will do it any better than the rest.

You would be much better to replace coolant, brake fluid, power steering fluid. Those are 15 years old and 150,000 miles.

There are countless oil discussions on here or google them, no point in starting another. value or chances of making 250,000 miles will not be found in this question though so it's basically a waste of time.
This +1. :29:
 

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Lawn ornament XT
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14,366 Posts
Any API rated 5w30 will be fine for that engine.
+1

Save money, use the cheapest oil you can find that meets the above.

The MOST IMPORTANT THING is to check oil level frequently at first, then less frequently once you get a feel for whether the car is losing oil for any reason.

Then get on a schedule for changing it, checking between changes, and stick to it properly.

You don't need anything fancy for motor oil in a Subaru unless:

A: it's regularly -50°F where you park it
B: you race it every weekend
C: it has a turbocharger
D: Has a sticker on it from the factory that says "use synthetic" (like the new FB engines)
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Is it a bad idea to use 5w 30 if I live in a cold weather state like Wisconsin? My noise is definitely not a tick, I am sure it's the dreaded piston slap at a cold startup that I have read about on here. I wish I would have noticed it when I purchased the car but of course the guy who sold it to me had it all warmed up when I went to look at it so the noise wasn't there at the time.
 

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2011 Prem. 2.5i, 1999 Outback
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258 Posts
As they say, follow the owners manual.
I use high mileage oil with good results on my 1999 with 175,000 miles
 

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I simply cannot abide useless people.
2006 2.5i and 2002 3.0 wagons.
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12,305 Posts
Piston slap is usually no big deal. If it goes away as the engine warms up, it's fine. 2 of the 3 2.5 Subaru's we have had have had some piston slap.

Any 5w30 is fine in cold weather. If you're really concerned 0w30 is available if you look for it.
 
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