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forget the P0420 - car will run indefinitely, it's benign, and almost certainly caused by the oil burning.

that oil leak is far more ominous.

1. get a look at the headgaskets where they extend past the block and look for:
A. When you say "dealer" - was that a Subaru dealer?
B. You want an indication of what brand headgasket was used - Subaru, or not?
C. Were both sides replaced, or just one?
D. Can you tell if the heads were resurfaced - look for metal color (cleaner) and a machine shop circular temp stick on device on the back of the heads.

2. if you run a carfax sometimes they show where a car was maintained and you can call shops for further information. i'd get that dealers number and call them yourself and ask if they were replaced due to
a. oil leak (most likely)
b. oil consumption
c. something else.

3. low oil is catastrophic - i'd be close to wanting another engine given the unknowns if you want 100,000 mile reliability. i've done the same thing before, but I'm buying a car for a price that makes it worth it if it happens so I'm less hesitant to toss another engine in. ebay, JDM, Auto Parts Market and see what your options are. or buy a totaled rear ended vehicle from a salvage auction for cheap for the engine.

low oil compromises lower end bearings which they're prone to loose with oil compromising events.
replacing bearings and re-ringing is not recommended - it's not generally cost effective and not ideal to DIY at home.

4. if you're still thinking repair:
5. have some UOA, maybe it'll show something regarding wear, though any oil from compromising events has been changed long ago, but it's cheap, i'd still do a couple for your next oil changes. although if you're adding a new quart every 600 miles, does that "water down" the results?

6. leak down test. is it getting past the rings, head gaskets, valve stem seals?

112 Posts
Discussion Starter #23
1047 miles in, low oil light illuminated. Happened while going down my road so I stopped immediately and filled it one quart with the same weight and type of oil used for last change. Monitoring mileage again.

Engine light remains off.

Noticing there might be an exhaust leak at the headers-thinking of getting new gaskets and redoing that-I'm positive that's because they changed the clutch before selling the car and I imagine they pulled out the engine to do so as opposed to dropping the driveshaft and transmission.

More updates as I rack up the miles!
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