2002 Subaru Outback 2.5, 42000mi, head gasket, warranty fraud?

  • 2002 SUBARU

I have a 2002 Subaru Outback base level model with the 2.5 engine at 42,000 miles. My local/main mechanic noticed that my head gasket was leaking and said that it needs to be replaced. He told me that since my car was in warranty, I should just take it to the dealer so I could get it fixed for free under the powertrain warranty.

The dealer I took my car to was able to diagnose, test drive, and completely replace both head gaskets, intake manifold gaskets, 'spark plug pipe' gasket, replace all coolant and oil in 3.5 hours.I have the documentation.

From what I understand, a head gasket job is normally takes about an entire day. Or more if machining is necessary. I also understand that Subaru has had many problems with head gasket leaks.

My question: Is it even possible to diagnose, test drive, and do all of those repairs in 3.5 hours?

A few mechanics have told me that it is not really possible and if it was possible, that they probably did a sub-par job. Any comments?

Final question. Does the 'Subaru Cooling System Conditioner' contain some of the same stuff that is in AlumAseal (metal flecks?). Please ignore my mechanical ignorance if this AlumAseal question makes no sense.
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have the same problem?
Monday, February 5th, 2007 AT 11:07 AM

1 Reply

Its like this, you're right Subaru has had some head gasket issues. And because of it those of us servicing Subaru's have gotten good at it.I can almost do it in my sleep. But not sure about the documentation part of it. The job under warranty pays more then 3.5 hrs and the tech doing the job wont get the warranty time paid unless the time punched on the timeslip for the repair exceeds or matches the time paid to the tech by Subaru. As far as how long it takes versus the completeness of the repair that depends on the skill level of the tech doing the job. If you do the same thing day in and day out you are bound to get really good at it or burnt out. The conditioner isnt any thing like alumiseal its more of a conditioner then a stop leak. The difference being that alumiseal will almost become a solid and could potentially clog a radiator core while the conditioner Subaru is using is meant to slow down the corrosive nature of the anti freeze in your car that is attacking your headgaskets.
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Tuesday, February 27th, 2007 AT 5:58 PM

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