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2011 subaru outback auto 2.5
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
all right so I'm new to the subaru world, my girlfriend bought a 2011 subaru outback 2.5 auto with about 250000km, a few months back. It started over heater last weekend, so figured it was a stuck thermostat, water pump etc. so I ordered the kit changed out the pump/pulleys/and timing belt. but I am worried that the timing is somehow off, I lined up all the notches to there proper locations and when I put the belt on all looked perfect. But when i was attempting to put the timing belt on, the drives side cam pulley spun on me about a 1/4 turn i just put it back what i thought was the proper place(notches lines up) and put the belt on. cranked the motor over a few times by hand everything felt smooth. started the car up idled just fine. let the car warm up to check for leaks nothing. decided to bring it for a test drive. When the car is under load(up a hill) the engine feels like it skips at around 2500-3000rpm and looses power and won't pull it's self up a hill and I didn't want to force it so towed it back home. it still idles fine and kind of hear a lifter ticking, may have been there before but who knows and not familiar with the sounds of these engine 95% of the vehicles I work on are diesel.
So my questions are
1.if all the notches are lined up when the belt is off can i freely turn the cams with out upsetting the timing as long as the notch is lined up once the belt is on.
2. is it possible to create an air lock in the cooling system that would affect the performance of the car( I did burp the system)
not too sure where to go from here, really just need to clarify if it's possible to mess of the timing then I can go from there. I'll more then likely end up doing a leak down test in the morning to verify if there is any damage, and pressure check the coolant system. I've read these head gaskets can fail sometimes with out the classic tell tale signs so we'll see

thanks to everyone in advance
 

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2013 Outback 2.5i Convenience
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So my questions are
1.if all the notches are lined up when the belt is off can i freely turn the cams with out upsetting the timing as long as the notch is lined up once the belt is on.
2. is it possible to create an air lock in the cooling system that would affect the performance of the car( I did burp the system)
not too sure where to go from here, really just need to clarify if it's possible to mess of the timing then I can go from there. I'll more then likely end up doing a leak down test in the morning to verify if there is any damage, and pressure check the coolant system. I've read these head gaskets can fail sometimes with out the classic tell tale signs so we'll see
1. These engines are interference and if you mess up the timing you will know it!

When the crank is at it's timing notch, the pistons are midway in their strokes, so yes, you can freely spin (as freely as you can against springs) the camshaft and not hit the pistons.
Great for noticing 1/4 turn movement, all you have to to is return it 1/4 turn in the other direction and you should be good to go. And spinning by hand the assembled engine was bump-free, so timing is close.

Have you rechecked the timing? Not too difficult to do, you have access panels I believe. It's possible you're off by 1 notch in the belt and this could cause an issue.

Did you replace the tensioner? All idler pulleys? OEM gear? If you want, upload some photos of the alignment notches, we all like images!

2. There could be some air trapped. I've heard of people having the car on a slant (front up) to help, lots of debate on if it does help or not.
 

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(formerly) 03 H6 OBW , (presently) 06 WRX Sportwagon & 2021 Honda CR-V
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align everything to the timing marks and do a tooth count - you can find that data with a google search
 

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2008 Outback 2.5
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984 Posts
If there was air trapped in the cooling system that wasn't burped out, you'd probably be able to see the air gap in the radiator the next day after a complete cool down. Personally, I use a Lisle 24680 spill free funnel kit and let the engine get up to running temperature with the funnel attached and 1/2 full of fluid. Before that, I used to surround the open radiator cap with towels and waited for the thermostat to open up, burp and top off the coolant (be sure to secure the towels so they don't get sucked into the fans).

An OBD2 scanner helps because you can see the temperature digitally and watch the coolant temperature go up and then drop once the thermostat opens up.
 

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2011 subaru outback auto 2.5
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11 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
timing

Yes I checked everything again, even redid the entire process, and looks good, got the covers off now so when I run it i can watch everything, and everything is smooth, used an Aisin kit(tensioner, water pump, idlers and gaskets which it all OEM I believe and have had great luck with them on my landcruisers.
I'll snap pics today, and maybe a video, I was up to 2am last night trying to find info not much luck. but my current thoughts are. Head Gasket, everyone seems suggest using a block tester(chemical) to detect exhaust in the coolant. I've never tested that way but I figured I'll head to the shop grab one of those kits before I Start pulling plugs and making headaches. possibly caused more damage then I thought when it over heated, it was over heating climbing a mountain caught it pulled over let it cool down. started light was off drove another 10km to get fluid, cooled down, added fluid drove 15km and it started to overheat and at that point I towed it home. and third maybe I knocked a sensor and possibly could just be a electrical timing issue. I'm going to head to Napa now and play with the car for a couple hours I'll post an update soon

thanks again
 

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2011 subaru outback auto 2.5
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
checked

So I checked the cooling system presssure held 16psi for an hour and then took off the tester. bought and used the combustion gas tester, and the fluid stayed blue, both when the engine was cold and warm ran the engine till the fans turned on. took off the timing belt again, loosened and torqued all bolts back to spec just for the sake of it. aligned everything and put it back together. so now I;ve disconnected the battery I'll leave it off for an hour or so to see if I can reset the computer and try again. I have obd ii readers not sure if I have one for something thins new but I'll try to see if I can hook one up
 

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2011 subaru outback auto 2.5
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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
If there was air trapped in the cooling system that wasn't burped out, you'd probably be able to see the air gap in the radiator the next day after a complete cool down. Personally, I use a Lisle 24680 spill free funnel kit and let the engine get up to running temperature with the funnel attached and 1/2 full of fluid. Before that, I used to surround the open radiator cap with towels and waited for the thermostat to open up, burp and top off the coolant (be sure to secure the towels so they don't get sucked into the fans).

An OBD2 scanner helps because you can see the temperature digitally and watch the coolant temperature go up and then drop once the thermostat opens up.

Yes I did do this ran the car till fans turned on and then some, there always seems to be air periodically coming up, is this common, It is a closed system right?,
 

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2011 subaru outback auto 2.5
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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
more thoughts

I'm driving up and down the driveway trying to figure this car studder thing out, when I did the belt change i left the car in park and cranked everything over numerous times, could this have an impact on the torque converter/ transmission not allowing thing to shift smoothly basically have zero experience with auto except with an e40d i rebuilt years ago and that was ****, I also noticed when you put it into the manual shift mode it wont let me shift, but all the light where flashing after a couple spudders somaybe its a safety feature and i only got about 300' run on the driveway, can't find the wire for my reader to pull codes so I'll keep at er
 

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2013 Outback 2.5i Convenience
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I'm driving up and down the driveway trying to figure this car studder thing out, when I did the belt change i left the car in park and cranked everything over numerous times, could this have an impact on the torque converter/ transmission not allowing thing to shift smoothly basically have zero experience with auto except with an e40d i rebuilt years ago and that was ****, I also noticed when you put it into the manual shift mode it wont let me shift, but all the light where flashing after a couple spudders somaybe its a safety feature and i only got about 300' run on the driveway, can't find the wire for my reader to pull codes so I'll keep at er
It certainly seems like the timing is good from the pictures and you sound like you know what you're doing! I highly doubt you did anything to the transmission, the TQ should be disengaged from the engine; the only thing that would turn in the trans is the fluid pump. And on that note, how's the fluid? changed when? Full? The car does have 250k kms, it should have had a couple drain/fills.

Is the car stuttering new (since yesterday) or is this an old symptom? If new, you did disconnect the battery, the ECU is back to 2011 and 0 kms, might just need to relearn the settings. I can't remember where I read about light flashing, but my first step would be to ensure the trans fluid is full.

Other things to look at may be the throttle body to be sure it's clean, the IAC valve might also be dirty.
 

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2011 subaru outback auto 2.5
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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
It certainly seems like the timing is good from the pictures and you sound like you know what you're doing! I highly doubt you did anything to the transmission, the TQ should be disengaged from the engine; the only thing that would turn in the trans is the fluid pump. And on that note, how's the fluid? changed when? Full? The car does have 250k kms, it should have had a couple drain/fills.

Is the car stuttering new (since yesterday) or is this an old symptom? If new, you did disconnect the battery, the ECU is back to 2011 and 0 kms, might just need to relearn the settings. I can't remember where I read about light flashing, but my first step would be to ensure the trans fluid is full.

Other things to look at may be the throttle body to be sure it's clean, the IAC valve might also be dirty.


well since we've owned its been running pretty good but have noticed a couple small sputters, on start up but that was it plus I rarely drive it. I'm going to check the fluid today, and locate this IAC valve, but the car ran fine before it over heated and I changed everything I should also state that even though i changed out everything in the timing it was all in really good shape so it was probably done before we bought it that also leaves me to believe that there could be another underlying problem to it over heating..
What are some other causes of these things over heating, or are they prone to it, it was a hot day and we where driving up a hill for a good 20mins straight.
 

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2011 subaru outback auto 2.5
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Update!!

So All my woes about timing I think are settled, and changing out the water pump and accessories may have just been due diligent. finally got the outback on some blocks checked the transmission oil, couldn't feel any oil, drained it and maybe just over a half Quart of oil in it, I imagine it must take 4-5 quarts. If that was the cause of the engine overheating to the point that coolant was have boiled out, It's a little worrisome, anyways dropped the pan because I wanted to inspect so pulled the valve body and I'll ohm check the solenoids "Is there a good resource for these specs". wanted to inspect the chain and pulley for heat stress marks but all looks good from the little bit I can see actually had no idea this a cvt tranny
 
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