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2005 Outback 2.5NA
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34 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
1997 Subaru legacy outback
Automatic transmission

Pulled the motor.
did the head gaskets,
decided while im in there to replace main seal/ and torque converter seal.
put the motor back in and has red fluid dripping near steering rack. i did notice before all of this work that i performed that it was fairly oily and grimey near the steering rack . i cleaned everything off and drove around and cant pin point if its my torque converter seal or rack.

sooooo...

I pulled the motor. because i only have this garage with all the tools i could ever need for another couple days and need to tackle this if its the torque converter seal failure. a steering rack leak can wait.

I went to the dealer and got a converter seal. and wow its way better looking than the napa(national brand) that i had on it the first time.

To risk not having to pull all of this stuff again!! does the seal get driven in all the way til it bottoms out? or does it stay flush with the casing? I have the FSM and i cant find any info

any help would be appreciated!
Cheers!
Thanks a bunch!!!!
Ross
 

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OBW H6 VDC, Tribeca, XT6
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12,385 Posts
was the leaky seal leaking around the outer or inner part of the seal?

what he said - it is not driven all the way in.

might be able to find some close up pic's on ebay or google images?

Subaru seals are often higher quality than aftermarkets, the brown seals are far more robust and forgiving. Though I haven't seen nearly as many issues with newer EJ engines as 1980's EA/ER stuff.
 

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2005 Outback 2.5NA
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34 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
ok, cool. 1mm in past.

i cannot answer your question about seeing if it was leaking on the outer or inner, because when i pull the TC away atf runs out, so its hard to trace the spot of the leak.

But i did notice that where the OD of the seal rides on the transmission, there is a little nic or scratch.

im wondering what i can do to make sure the mating surface is nice because this is critical

have you guys ever heard of anyone putting high temp rtv around the outer lip of the seal?

i know on the main seals on aircooled vw's, you put red rtv around the outer of the seal before you put it in.

THANKS GUYS!
 

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2007 Outback XT Ltd
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847 Posts
Dress out any high spots in the case with very fine sandpaper. Any low spots like that scratch can be sealed with some high temp RTV, no problem, as long as the seal OD and the cavity ID are squeeky clean. Any oil film with defeat the purpose of the sealant. Use a very fine layer all the way around and make sure it doesn't get into the shaft area.

You can help a worn shaft seal better if you measure the wear mark on the shaft, compare it to the new seal's lip and then install the seal to a depth that puts the lip on an unworn part of the shaft. Did that make sense?

John Davies
Spokane WA USA
 

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01 Outback LL Bean
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2,439 Posts
The seal can be pressed all the way in and it will end up being about a mm below surface depth.

Unfortunatly in this case I do not think there is much room to adjust the location of the seal so that the seal is sealing a different part of the torque converter shaft.

I would recommend a multi level wet sanding to get a smooth finish. Something similar to this, but you don't need a mirror finish.

legacycentral bbs • View topic - How to Repair a Leaking Steering rack: Subaru Legacy, '90-94

How deep and long is the scratch?

Can you post a pic?
 

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2005 Outback 2.5NA
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34 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
thanks for the replies and the advice!

well the width of the subaru dealer seal was much wider(taller, however you want to look at it) so yes, you are correct there isnt much room to move the seal to ride on a non-worn spot of the TC. But here is a picture of the scratch. the picture makes it look really bad but its really not that deep(imho) im going to make sure that it doesnt have any burs sticking up. then i guess i will rely on the rtv to seal the depth of the scratch.



i dont know what else to do. i am way over budget on this project so a new or used trans is not an option. but it could be just the seal issue. being seated incorrectly. or the fact that it was aftermarket and the measurements were way different than the dealer issued seal.

heres a pic
 

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101 Posts
The scratch is the one on the outside opening? If that is the case, get a small tube of FelPro (or equivalent) anerobic sealer if you are replacing the seal. RTV may work too, but it is slippery until it is dry so it is not good to use around the outside of seal when you are installing them. Since you allready have the seal installed, you can clean that scratched area of any oil and put a thin coating of RTV around the area. Just keep it off the sealing lip and shaft areas. Let it dry overnight. Smear a film of transmission oil around the lips and on the shaft to prevent any dry rubbing.
 

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01 Outback LL Bean
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I thought the scratch was on the torque converter shaft. This is easier to deal with I think. I would use ultra grey to fill it in, then install the seal and let it sit. Should be fine.

Since anerobic only drys when there is no oxygen or air and since this is not a metal surface to metal surface mating then I would be worried about it not drying.

You could also get some JB weld and fill it in and sand it.
 

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Also make sure to seat your torque converter correctly. The face of the torque converter should be basically flush with the bell housing.
 

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I thought the scratch was on the torque converter shaft. This is easier to deal with I think. I would use ultra grey to fill it in, then install the seal and let it sit. Should be fine.

Since anerobic only drys when there is no oxygen or air and since this is not a metal surface to metal surface mating then I would be worried about it not drying.

You could also get some JB weld and fill it in and sand it.
Just to clarify. If the seal was coming out and being replaced, anerobic sealer is a good choice. As I re-read the thread, it looks like he already has it installed, so carefully cleaning the area and applying a thin bead on the outside of the seal and the housing should work.
 

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2005 Outback 2.5NA
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Discussion Starter #12
Follow up.

i cleaned it up really well, and jb welded it, then sanded it smooth with stages of sand paper eventually ending with 1500. cleaned it up really good.

Then i put a little bit of anerobic sealer on the OD. slipped the nice dealer issued seal and it drove right in nicely. the seal sat in 1mm from the face of the trans. seated torque converter. put motor back in.

drove it about 15 miles, and all looks good, nice and dry. hopefully this is the end!!!

Things l have learned. do not use an aftermarket TC seal. unless it looks to be the same dimensions of the previous seal.
Thanks to everyone for the help. you guys rock!
 
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