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Hi there,

We bought a 2001 Subaru Outback wagon for $8,000 in 4 years ago. It stopped in traffic today. Towed it to mechanic who determined it needed a new fuel pump - would cost $325. He just called us and said that he just realized it needs a new fuel pump assembly which would cost $575. It has 108,000 miles on it or at least that's what the odometer says. The blue book trade-in value is around $1,000.

To me, it rides like a bit of a tin can, though my spouse disagrees. Should we put $575 into it or say good-bye and buy a newer used car? We are not mechanically inclined.

Thanks much!
 

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06 OBW 2.5, 05 Forester, had 03 H6 OBW
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It might just need the little metal cap on the fuel pump, available as part of the 2004 in-tank filter assembly.
 

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(formerly) 03 H6 OBW , (presently) 06 WRX Sportwagon & 2021 Honda CR-V
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01 Outback LL Bean
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Either way, I would fix it. Seems like you can fetch more for it when its running vs not.

You might consider another mechanic though. Unless they are using the OE Subaru part, I think the price is a bit high
 

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Outbacks, SVXs, XT6, 4Runner, Celica, Brat, E150s
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They're not getting it from RockAuto, they're getting it from a local parts house who would have it in stock, and would provide a warranty that covers labor, not just the parts. Probably cost the shop $250-350 to get it, and you can assume they mark up the parts (suggested list on those is probably 400-500). Plus shop supplies, taxes, however they bill it, that's probably comparable to any other estimate to have it fixed at a legitimate shop.

It's probably repairable to a patient and persistent mechanic without needing a whole assembly, but a shop may or may not want to put the time into it (and it probably doesn't make sense to pay the shop rate to figure it out). You might suggest that the little cap that commonly breaks and o-ring underneath it is replaceable right from Subaru, and they might look into that.




Only you can decide whether to keep it. Most of us on this board don't trade our cars into the dealership (or pay anyone to work on them), we deal with private party sales. Value is heavily dependent on location, but around here, that car in solid running condition would sell for 3-5k depending on options and rust. Not running....maybe $1k, but probably more like $400. That math immediately tells me it's worth fixing, regardless of whether you plan to keep it. In fact, I'd be willing to bet the difference in trade-in value between running and not running is more than $600....


Assuming it's not rusted out, a 2001 with 108k on it has a LOT of life left in it with regular maintenance. If it were me, I probably wouldn't be selling it unless I got a screaming deal on something better.
 

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Fuel pump replacement requires a Phillips head screwdriver, an 8mm socket and about 30 minutes of time. You can get a fuel pump from the junkyard for $20-$30

-pull fuel pump fuse
-start car and let it die
-pull cord behind passenger rear seat bottom to fold seat forward
-fold rubber mat out if the way
- remove 4 Phillips head screwdriver from fuel pump cover
-dosconnect fuel lines and electrical connector from top of pump
- remove maybe eight bolts(8mm) from top of fuel pump (attaching it to the body)
-pull pump out
-Put new pump in
-reverse to put together

If you're in Colorado I'll do it for you for super cheap
 

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Fresh Out of Outbacks!
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Sounds like a good diagnosis- Fuel pumps do fail on 15-20 year old Subarus, and when they do you get symptoms like you describe.

The problem can be solved for considerably less money than the current offer from your mechanic. You might get them to apply a cheaper fix, or just take it elsewhere.

I wouldn't let that be the problem that takes it off the road- still plenty of life left in the car.
 

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OBW H6 VDC, Tribeca, XT6
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(you didn't tell us which car and we have no idea where you live or we could help specifically).

1. it's often just the fuel pump cap and oring. there were new caps you could buy. i could ship a cap and oring for $35.

2. buy a used fuel pump: $50 for a 4 cylinder pump:
FUEL PUMP ONLY 25L FITS 00-03 LEGACY 211795 | eBay

or find one closer on Car-Part.com--Used Auto Parts Market

they're so easy to replace and OEM pumps fail so rarely this is a situation where it's worth it to install used part.

also aftermarkets aren't notably reliable and robust so i wouldn't want to fork out money for them anyway.
 

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On the Super Mod Squad
2002 3.0 VDC Wag + 2018 2.5 Leg Ltd
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(you didn't tell us which car and we have no idea where you live or we could help specifically).

1. it's often just the fuel pump cap and oring. there were new caps you could buy. i could ship a cap and oring for $35.

2. buy a used fuel pump: $50 for a 4 cylinder pump:
FUEL PUMP ONLY 25L FITS 00-03 LEGACY 211795 | eBay

or find one closer on Car-Part.com--Used Auto Parts Market

they're so easy to replace and OEM pumps fail so rarely this is a situation where it's worth it to install used part.

also aftermarkets aren't notably reliable and robust so i wouldn't want to fork out money for them anyway.
looks like sacramento, ca.

where any mechanic is just going to want to throw a new part at it, (be it a subaru OEM, or whatever the local chain has).

very few used subaru in that neighborhood to be had in parts yards etc, or knowledge about the $1 Oring and used cap
. (probably one shop in that town would be smart enough to have Orings and used subaru caps on the counter waiting for the 2000-2004 subarus to come rolling in off the flat bed).

we should all move there....and be that subaru used parts guy.
 

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(formerly) 03 H6 OBW , (presently) 06 WRX Sportwagon & 2021 Honda CR-V
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(you didn't tell us which car and we have no idea where you live or we could help specifically).

1. it's often just the fuel pump cap and oring. there were new caps you could buy. i could ship a cap and oring for $35.

2. buy a used fuel pump: $50 for a 4 cylinder pump:
FUEL PUMP ONLY 25L FITS 00-03 LEGACY 211795 | eBay

or find one closer on Car-Part.com--Used Auto Parts Market

they're so easy to replace and OEM pumps fail so rarely this is a situation where it's worth it to install used part.

also aftermarkets aren't notably reliable and robust so i wouldn't want to fork out money for them anyway.
$35 is a bargain.

new caps are $60-$80 or more.

2004 Subaru Legacy Filter-fuel tank. Maintenance, kit, cyl - 42072AE00A | Larry H. Miller Subaru Boise, Boise ID

https://www.amazon.com/Genuine-Suba...5925&sr=1-1&keywords=subaru+42072AE00A+filter
 
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