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'03 outback limited, '01 Outback Limited, '01 Legacy L wagon, '96 Legacy Brighton wagon
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2,177 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Going through my '01 and '03 OBs a bit at a time, as my work load allows. So far, it has been all the fluids, with electricals and mechanicals next.


Outside of the usual - timing belt kit, fuel pump o-ring, air & fuel filter, PCV valve, cam seals, crank seal, plugs & wires, thermostat, rad cap, water pump - what other items should I look at replacing at this time? Both cars are in the 163-170K miles area.
 

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2008 Outback 2.5
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952 Posts
Maybe valve cover gaskets and spark plug oil seals.
Accessory belts
Bounce test each corner for shocks
PCV Hose. Mine was cracked and since it was just a press-on fitting, it leaked and caused rough idling. A new one fixed the idling immediately
Check the front wheel lower control arms especially the rear bushings.
Ball Joints
Sway bar bushings
Check the CV axle boots
Check upper and lower radiator hoses
Check around the power steering pump for any leakage especially in the area of the top O-ring
 

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2019 Subaru Forester Premium, Crystal Black Silica, Pkg 15
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1,708 Posts
You know, it still surprises me that there isn't firm replacement interval for the PCV valve, PSF, and CVTF for the 4th generation, or CVTF/PCV for the 5th.

I wonder what the preventative replacement interval would be? 60k? 90k? You're talking to someone that does his brake fluid/differentials every 30k.
 

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2008 Outback 2.5
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952 Posts
I didn't change mine until the car hit about 114k.

Removing the hose caused the end of the hose to crack and when I checked the valve it was still working fine. So "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" probably applies for this $10 part.
 

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'03 outback limited, '01 Outback Limited, '01 Legacy L wagon, '96 Legacy Brighton wagon
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2,177 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
probably should have been more precise - I already plan on totally dismantling all of the suspension and going through it thoroughly and having the engines rebuilt.



What sensors and other electrical or electro-mechanical items would be good to replace at this point? What are the usual problematic ones?
 

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2001 OBW VDC, 2004 WRX, 1999 LEGACY L (in a heap)
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1,302 Posts
age usually is a factor at this point, i'd say. electronics usually don't fail at as high a rate just with the passage of time, so, id focus on the mechanical.

The age makes me think of every squishy bit of the suspension, just based on my own rides i'd be suspicious of every bushing on the car.

but....if you have the time, and you're basically restoring these nearly 20 year old cars, i'd just take it easy and evaluate each system as you get to it.

Look at the doors. inspect the hinges, remove the cards, clean out dust and re-lubricate the window rails & the door latch, check the silicone and rubber door and window seals, replace door clips that might've broken, etc etc etc It sounds like you already kinda plan to do that anyways by the way you described the suspension work.
 

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'03 outback limited, '01 Outback Limited, '01 Legacy L wagon, '96 Legacy Brighton wagon
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2,177 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Yes, the plans are to go thoroughly through just about everything in the cars, including sealing up every body seam and rustproofing everything, inside and out - all stuff that I used to do to to pay for my racing habits decades ago. My weaknesses in these cars is knowing what the lifespans are of the usual sensor and electro-mechanical items that fail over time.
 

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2008 Outback 2.5i, 2009 Forrester 2.5 sohc
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606 Posts
I would only change parts that would if they failed would leave you stranded and have to tow home. While doing the TB kit, consider the all the hoses, upper radiator hoses, the heater core hoses, and the hoses that cool the throttle body. Other than that keep driving.

Any of the electrical parts could randomly fail at that age, such as the VVL solenoid, O2 sesnors, but you will get home. Alternator failure will leave you stranded, but its expensive to replace as PM. That said, if you taking the engine out anyway, not better time to change the O2 sensors.

Keep driving and accept the cars are almost 20 years old, and the money you save in not replacing means you might have a tow now and then and a rental for a day or two while repairing.
 

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03 H6 OBW & 06 WRX Sportwagon
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17,617 Posts
starter solenoid rebuild? contacts and plunger kits are available.

accessory belt tensioner pulley bearing?

battery cables?

inspect bulb sockets in the rear for corrosion? elsewhere too?

consider new brake caliper hoses? maybe SS braided?

inspect inner tie rods

there 'may' be upgraded gussets for the front of the front windows. I think I saw some mention of that, not sure.

There may also be an opportunity to get new seatbelts - that gen has lifetime warranty and if they are slow to retract.....?
 

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'03 outback limited, '01 Outback Limited, '01 Legacy L wagon, '96 Legacy Brighton wagon
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Discussion Starter #11
Within reason, this isn't a shut-you-down situation, provided battery is OK. You can go a little ways on battery alone. But I wouldn't push it.

One of my future mods will be to run cables to the interior to allow hooking up my GooLoo jumper battery to temporarily run the engine to get me either home or at least to a populated area if ever needed.
 

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2008 Outback 2.5
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952 Posts
Propeller head stuff:

From an EE standpoint, be very careful if you intend to do this. Your alternator is rated for about 60 Amps (someone correct me if I'm wrong).

Your car battery cable is sized to not catch fire if the battery has to run the car's ignition and whatever else is on when the alternator dies. Your GooLoo battery is rated at maybe 18AH (18,000 mAH) which means it can deliver 18 amps for an hour at it's nominal voltage of 11.1V before being completely depleted (and probably completely dead or damaged).

Be sure to use wires capable of delivering at least 60 Amps without getting fiery hot or actually catching fire. 200A for a 5 second engine start is one thing, 40 Amps for 15 minutes straight is another. I charge RC airplane batteries and even at 18 Amps, 12 gauge wire gets pretty warm after a while.

According to the National Electric Code (NEC), 8 gauge wire can handle 40 Amps if the insulation is rated at 60C (140F) in an 80F environment. You need to derate (meaning you need bigger cable) this for higher temperatures like in your engine compartment. You really don't want the wires to catch fire or have the battery explode if you severely overtax it by making it do something it's not built for.
 
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