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Discussion Starter #1
I just bought a 2012 outback 2.5i with really good deal (16000 miles at $22k out of door, limited version, with backup camera). But my wife and I ignored the previous service record. It turns out the engine oil was only changed once at 5000 miles according to the dealer service record. There is no lack of oil when I do the oil change myself, just a little dark color. I used mobil 1 oil and filter. It drives no difference. But I am very concerned about this long term no oil change for one year. Will it hurt the engine? I also talked with the service dept at the dealer specifically about the warranty. He said as long as I change oil from now on at 3000 miles interval, they wont deny warranty repair. We plan to purchase gold plus 7 yrs/100k also. I don't know if I should keep this car for long time now. In serious dilemma now.
 

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It turns out the engine oil was only changed once at 5000 miles according to the dealer service record.
Only if the previous owner didn't have the oil changed somewhere else, or DIY, that the dealer record would not show.

A lot of new car owners, including many on this forum, don't go back to the dealer for the routine oil changes after the first or second one. Sometimes a dealer will provide free oil changes for a while, but scheduling, time and distance can often outweigh even this benefit.

If the dealer you bought the car from is also the original selling dealer, then perhaps they might be willing to check with the original owner about subsequent oil changes, or put you in direct contact. If the original owner traded the car in on a new Subaru, then there could be a good relationship with the dealer and this shouldn't be a problem. Also, some states/provinces will issue a car's previous ownership record (for a fee), so you might be able to identify the previous owner this way.

Nevertheless, the engine oils today are quite capable of being used for more than 3000 miles, and some makers recognize this in their recommended maintenance schedules. If the proper level of the oil was maintained over that period and the car hadn't been subjected to abuse or "severe service", there probably would not have been any significant impact.

By the way, it's not unusual for oil that's been used for a while to be dark. One role of the oil is to hold combustion and wear by-product contaminants in suspension so that it can be caught in the oil filter or drained away during the oil change. I'd be more concerned if it came out anywhere near as clear as new oil.
 

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I just bought a 2012 outback 2.5i with really good deal (16000 miles at $22k out of door, limited version, with backup camera). But my wife and I ignored the previous service record. It turns out the engine oil was only changed once at 5000 miles according to the dealer service record. There is no lack of oil when I do the oil change myself, just a little dark color. I used mobil 1 oil and filter. It drives no difference. But I am very concerned about this long term no oil change for one year. Will it hurt the engine? I also talked with the service dept at the dealer specifically about the warranty. He said as long as I change oil from now on at 3000 miles interval, they wont deny warranty repair. We plan to purchase gold plus 7 yrs/100k also. I don't know if I should keep this car for long time now. In serious dilemma now.
Magnuson?Moss Warranty Act - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


The dealer is screwing you. They can't deny warranty even if you do your own services. If an engine blew the enfaces is on them to prove why the engine blew not on you.
As far as changing your oil every 3,000 miles, this a waste on todays engines. Run any Synthetic and you are fine for one year or at least 7,500 miles. If your worried change the filter more often but that's not necessary.

Warranty on the engine, save your money!

I just sold my 2012 with 50K on it and never had a single issue. Changed oil every 7,000 miles with Amsoil. The engine ran better with 50,000 than with 10,000 miles. I bought a 2013 same car with the new engine and this with 3,000 miles in a month runs perfect, not a drop of oil and 30 plus mpg.

Subaru's make a great 2.5 engine. The older ones would run 200K with only a HG change. The new 2010 one seen perfect with no issues. If you don't use any oil between changes now you have a good one and there is no reason with oil and filter changes it shouldn't run till 200K.Just don't let it sit running in order to warm it up when it's cold. 30 seconds is fine before you drive, just keep the RPM's low until.
the blue light goes of. Maintenance is a joke on these cars, Cabin filter changes from the dealers are from $80-130 for a $16.00 dollar filter and 5 minutes labor. Get the idea?
 

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2013 Outback - 3.6R Limited, EyeSight/Nav/MoonRoof/Kitchen Sink.
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3000 miles oil changes only serve one purpose - to drain your wallet of money.

I don't drive my truck very often so it is not uncommon for me to go 12-15 months w/o an oil change. So far, in 11 years, there have been no adverse effects.

I doubt you have anything to worry about.
 

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If the dealer you bought the car from is also the original selling dealer, then perhaps they might be willing to check with the original owner about subsequent oil changes, or put you in direct contact. If the original owner traded the car in on a new Subaru, then there could be a good relationship with the dealer and this shouldn't be a problem. Also, some states/provinces will issue a car's previous ownership record (for a fee), so you might be able to identify the previous owner this way.
It would be... Improper at best for a dealer to give out information identifying the previous owner of a car, even if they could be trusted to do it without mixing them up. I don't think it would break any us laws, but just imagine getting that phone call- "who? Wait what? When did I do an oil change? Who are you anyway?" And while a state DMV may hand it out, that phone call might be even less well received. Might as well identify yourself as Creeps McStalkerson and say you're in the basement with a knife.

Anyway...

11k is only 50% past the factory recommendation of 7500 miles. Any modern synthetic oil can cover a whoopsie like that, as long as there is always a sufficient quantity of it.

To the o.p.: I really don't think this is going to cause a problem. Enjoy your car!
 

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2012 limited, white, no moonroof or nav
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If the PO had the dealer change the oil at 5k, it is most likely that the 5k interval was continued......Just not at the dealer.

Personally, I change mine at 5k intervals, and my car has never seen the dealer since I bought it. I have records........That would most likely not get passed on, if I traded the car in.

So I believe the car is fine. Drive it awhile, and confirm that it does not use oil. If it checks out good, no worries.
 

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if the level/volume of oil was OK; in a modern, new-ish car, I wouldn't worry about this for a nano-second.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Thank you all. The record shows it was a company leased car by the dealer. So most probably they changed oil for only one time.
Also I bought the subaru oil filter. They request a washer ring to be attached with the off market filter to prevent leaks. Since the price is only $9 including the washer, I plan to buy filter from dealer from now on. Also the filter size is so tiny, and is the smallest one I've ever used.
 

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2013 Outback Limited 2.5 EyeSight & 2010 Legacy Premium, 2010 OB Limited (traded)
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Thank you all. The record shows it was a company leased car by the dealer. So most probably they changed oil for only one time.
Also I bought the subaru oil filter. They request a washer ring to be attached with the off market filter to prevent leaks. Since the price is only $9 including the washer, I plan to buy filter from dealer from now on. Also the filter size is so tiny, and is the smallest one I've ever used.
I'm assuming the 'washer ring' is actually the crush washer that goes on your oil drain plug.
 

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If it were my vehicle, I'd do two LOF changes at 3K each and then lengthen the interval to 5K.

Example: Next two OIC's at 19K, then 22K, then 25K, 30K, 35K, and etc....

Also, getting the metal flakes out the front & rear differentials will help with improved MPG.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
At that mileage should I change the differential oil?

If it were my vehicle, I'd do two LOF changes at 3K each and then lengthen the interval to 5K.

Example: Next two OIC's at 19K, then 22K, then 25K, 30K, 35K, and etc....

Also, getting the metal flakes out the front & rear differentials will help with improved MPG.
 

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2013 Outback Limited 2.5i
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I'd just change the oil every 7500 mi to maintain the warranty, and use synthetic to reduce varnishing. Use your favorite synthetic oil. Walmart has good prices on 5Q jugs. Alternately the Subaru oil is also excellent.

You can use aftermarket filters too, just select a good quality filter with synthetic media. PureOne, Mobil 1, Fram EG/Ultra, Wix, Bosch are all good and better than the Subaru OEM.
 

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2013 Outback Limited 2.5 EyeSight & 2010 Legacy Premium, 2010 OB Limited (traded)
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No. I think he told me it's the one attached to the oil filter. I will call dealer tomorrow to make sure about this.
Maybe I am not understanding this correctly. You bought a Subaru branded filter and he gave you an extra ring for an "off market filter". Why, if you bought a Subaru filter? Is it a small metal washer that looks like it would fit the drain plug or is it a larger rubber ring the size of the filter?
Also don't go crazy doing unnecessary fluid changes. Just change the oil and filter and you will be fine. Also be aware that a lot of replies you are getting here are from 2013 owners whose cars require synthetic. Yours does not but it wouldn't hurt to use it.
 

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At that mileage should I change the differential oil?

At 5K, the Subaru dealer changed the fluid in both differentials (for $28.50 labor - each) and the tech called the Service Manager over to show him all the metal flakes in the factory's original fluid.

Tech teased his manager that he had struck gold with all the shiney metal in the pan. Needless to say, all those metal flakes cause unnecessary resistance and friction which lower MPG.

I provided the Amsoil Severe Gear Oil 75W-90 fluid in my 2013 Outback 6-cylinder.

Recommend you use a FULL synthetic 75W-90 in yours and suggest you change it early for best long-term results. (The factory fill oil is not worn-out; just contaminated with debris from the gears mating together.)
 

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2003 LL Bean Outback H6 and 2019 Outback Base
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You can get the name of the original owner by the title.

I bought my car in October, they handed me the title. Owners name and address are on it.
Spoke to the previous owners , who were very nice. An older couple. Asked them about gas they used, maintainence, how driven, etc.....

Peace of mind goes a long way.

As stated above............I would not be too concerned with the possibility of no oil change. Just change your oil now and every 3000 with filter for the next few. Then if you want to change it at longer intervals you can..............I would not. Its a personal decision on my part and it gives ME..peace of mind
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Yes, I bought a subaru brand filter from the dealer. And he sold me another extra ring for the brand filter. And he mentioned I also need this ring for off market filter. So I am confused too. The ring acts like compressed ring to prevent leak. But the mobil 1 filter no ring attached also fits perfectly without leak.

Maybe I am not understanding this correctly. You bought a Subaru branded filter and he gave you an extra ring for an "off market filter". Why, if you bought a Subaru filter? Is it a small metal washer that looks like it would fit the drain plug or is it a larger rubber ring the size of the filter?
Also don't go crazy doing unnecessary fluid changes. Just change the oil and filter and you will be fine. Also be aware that a lot of replies you are getting here are from 2013 owners whose cars require synthetic. Yours does not but it wouldn't hurt to use it.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
May I ask how many quarters of gear oil is needed for both differentials? Is it specified in manual?

At 5K, the Subaru dealer changed the fluid in both differentials (for $28.50 labor - each) and the tech called the Service Manager over to show him all the metal flakes in the factory's original fluid.

Tech teased his manager that he had struck gold with all the shiney metal in the pan. Needless to say, all those metal flakes cause unnecessary resistance and friction which lower MPG.

I provided the Amsoil Severe Gear Oil 75W-90 fluid in my 2013 Outback 6-cylinder.

Recommend you use a FULL synthetic 75W-90 in yours and suggest you change it early for best long-term results. (The factory fill oil is not worn-out; just contaminated with debris from the gears mating together.)
 

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Discussion Starter #20
Just found it in the manual.
It needs 75W/90 oil. Front diff needs 1.5 US Qts, rear diff needs 0.8 US Qts.
 
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