I had the same problem with my Outback at 80,000
Here a run down on my story.
I over heated one cold winter day and brought the car in for service.
First they replaced the radiator (said there was a hole). About 3 days later it overheated again.
Next they replaced the thermostat, but told me
the old one tested fine. Again it overheated.
I went and searched on the internet and found
a bunch of people with the same problem (hundreds of people) I called subaru, they insured me that
my car was not part of the head gasket problem I have a late 1999 outback limited, they said the problem was 1998 - early 1999. But after
seeing bubles in my overflow reservour, and other
similar symptoms as people described on the internet, I told my mechanic to replace the head gaskets.
The Mechanic had never replaced head gaskets on a subaru before, but they did it. They made a few errors, so they ended up taking the heads off again. I continued to smell anti freeze for a few weeks and determined there was a leak. They put some dye in the coolant and I ran it for about 2 days and brought it back, they took the heads off again, said the new gaskets had failed, they put another new set of gaskets in again and all has been good since. Since they had to rip so much of the engine apart I had them also replace the timing belt and gave it a full tuneup. It was about $3000 in total for all the work and I didn't have a car for most of a month, but It's has been running well for the last 25K miles. For the first 10K I was very angry at Subaru, but $3K was cheaper than getting a new car and I've since put on a few miles and am trusting the car again. It's hard to handle the $3K at one shot, but the first 80K of driving was trouble free, and now another 25K with no other problems. If I have a problem again, I'm turning this car into a Electric! ;-)
Friday, April 18th, 2008 AT 1:20 PM