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My ‘05 OBXT journal


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Hello everyone!

 

Recent member here..

 

Since my car has a myriad of issues and instead of creating a thread for every single one of them, I've decided to create this one as my journey into fixing what I can with it.

 

I am a former owner of a 2001 Forester L, my first Subaru. I am by no means a mechanic, just learned from the FSM, YouTube videos and help from other fellow members. Doing so, I overhauled my previous car's motor due to a H/G leak it had. I really enjoyed doing all kinds of work/services on it: engine, suspension, steering, chassis, brakes, general periodic maintenance, etc. Until sadly one day, a distracted young lady ran a red light and T boned me, totaling it; spun me around 180 degrees. Subarus are some really strong cars, especially the older ones, it really saved my life.

 

I was honestly searching around for 2004-2005 Forester XT, but those cars are almost nonexistent. So when I found this Outback XT which I really liked, I jumped on it like a duck on a June bug. This is my very first turbo Subaru ever, but it is not without its faults. I've put around 1K miles on it since I got it with 210,330 miles (a lot I know) still learning the issues with the car.

 

So far I've replaced the engine oil, filter, coolant and oil cooler crossover pipe, which was rusted and pitted. Thankfully the undercarriage is in pretty good shape, no rust!

 

These are some of my main concerns with the car now:

 

Most recent issue: Recently discovered a weird "rubbing" kind of noise coming from engine bay upon hard acceleration, never heard it before (was afraid it could be the turbo, but I'm not sure yet what it is.. if anyone has an idea what it is, please advise..)

 

Overheating when driven hard (temp gauge rises close to red, only when driven hard). The car doesn't overheat under normal driving conditions. Weird..

 

I did notice oil leaks on both valve cover gaskets and what appears to be a leak from the rear main seal also. No apparent H/G leak though..

 

Fuel smell inside cabin (noticed rusted fuel rails/pipes by the engine bay which I will be replacing soon)

 

Heater doesn't work (heater core inlet hose came clamped with pressure pliers/possible heater core leak).

 

Grinding noise heard/felt when making Left turns (sounds like dragging a metal pipe on the floor while turning left)

 

Clicking noise on Left front suspension (possible CV Axle problem)

 

Clunking noise heard on rear suspension (possible worn out control arm, sway bar bushing)

 

So far I've replaced the engine oil and coolant, as well as oil cooler crossover pipe which was rusted.

 

My main concern for now is the fuel lines of course and the overheating (which doesn't occur unless the car is driven hard.. weird)

 

..and the list goes on with other minor stuff..

 

Some members suggested doing a cylinder compression test before fixing other things. I have to get around doing so once I can, have been super busy lately.

 

For now I will drive it nicely until I can get the fuel lines and figure out what's wrong with it overheating. Your help and suggestions will be greatly appreciated.

Edited by RumblyXT
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I’d be curious as to what you find out about the o reheating issue. Wife’s Tribeca is doing the same when idling… course H6s are different animals and Tribecas are known to run hot but maybe a fix for yours will help hers. As of right now there is a pinhole leak in the rad so I’m planning on replacing that and all heater hoses. Headgaskets are also in the not so distant future too though…
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^^Interesting. I didn’t know that.. turbo Subarus have been known to have bad H/Gs too.

 

Wondering if a H/G test would reveal coolant gases on mine then..

 

So far, there’s no white smoke coming out, radiator has no leaks, has good airflow, both fans kick in, rad caps are in good condition, just need to do the H/G test now.

 

I just hope the heads are in good condition/not cracked.. but I’m preparing for a full overhaul if I have to.

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I was suspicious of the pinched/clamped heater core inlet hose disturbing the proper coolant flow and possibly creating the overheating under hard driving conditions.

 

Will have to do a coolant bypass to test out that possibility.

 

Really need to get that compression test Tehnation suggested.

Edited by RumblyXT
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Slow progress I know, it's going to get better.. eventually lol

 

After much research, it very much looks like I have a bad left front wheel bearing.. seems that's why the car's making that metal grinding/scraping noise when turning left.

 

I was concerned it was the Rack & Pinion, though I definitely have to replace the dark ugly P/S fluid.

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First maintenance done a couple of weeks ago..

 

1588636350_Firstmaintenance.jpg.f12b8874c83f97dd9e735bb9a88ae2b6.jpg

 

Cleaned the Air filter unit and MAF sensor..

 

408605754_CleanAirFilter.jpg.eafb8d781a9d2b14dd306341777de96a.jpg

 

1562658483_MAFsensor.jpg.f25c9e69156094e8e945334cce9bdbb0.jpg

 

Finally got some used parts in very good condition.. current fuel rails on the car are rusted

 

1902145419_Firstsetofparts.jpg.4786e32cb7fe11845989259657822586.jpg

 

Also got around installing a new radiator and new hoses for the 4Runner

 

1410845396_5VZFEradiatorandhoses.jpg.2ac6a8ec9ec3c078fa8f29ce5094c704.jpg

 

Installed a much needed new oil cooler pipe, old one was in very bad shape

 

633587330_pittedoilcoolerpipe.jpg.d692078fc96ef22e2ae775070da375f3.jpg

 

1028586361_newoilcoolerpipe.jpg.f4e373ced87211773170355a61f12b04.jpg

 

Unknown overheating

Overheating.jpg.a25472de42dbfd73c5e1d0ff6e189930.jpg

Edited by RumblyXT
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Upon hard acceleration, I can hear this weird (fffrrrrr) kind of noise coming from what seems like the right side of the engine.. the noise seems to go away if I decelerate.

 

It sounds as if one was purposely trying to stop a grinder rubber wheel with a piece of metal.

 

Right after the noise, I can smell burnt rubber.. so weird, this wasn’t happening before.

 

But it definitely only happens when I floor it. It doesn’t do this noise when slowly accelerating.

 

Any ideas would be appreciated

Edited by RumblyXT
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Perhaps the prior owner knew it had a bad head gasket and used some sort of stop-leak type solution in your radiator/oil? If you put new coolant in and don't notice is leaking externally from anywhere, it still could be a head gasket. Could also be a bad thermostat. Those fail after awhile.
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I would say its most likely bad headgaskets. The heads will need to be decked/resurfaced by a machine shop. Use OEM gaskets or Felpro MLS head gaskets. Since you are in there you could slap in some ARP headbolts for extra insurance. I would also replace the timing belt component kit as its due if the service intervals of 105k were followed. Replace the water pump as well with a new OEM thermostat. At this point this will make sure all of the internal cooling components of the engine are in good working order.

 

Before you tackle the headgaskets I would hookup the heater core and see why that was bypassed in the first place. If it was the because the heater core leaks, since you're in South Florida you could bypass it with a looped hose to continue coolant flow for the engine. Or you could just make sure the engine side does have the coolant lines looped so that the coolant flow for the engine isn't just blocked off. Those coolant lines are by the starter/steering column connection point inside the engine bay.

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Perhaps the prior owner knew it had a bad head gasket and used some sort of stop-leak type solution in your radiator/oil? If you put new coolant in and don't notice is leaking externally from anywhere, it still could be a head gasket. Could also be a bad thermostat. Those fail after awhile.

 

Yeah.. this guy sold me a car that overheated, I feel that way now. He never told me about the heater core inlet hose being clamped either..

 

It's ok, I'm really planning on fixing her completely. I just prey I don't have a cylinder head cracked if I'm ever down that far into it.

 

I think I also figured why I have the weird rubbing noise too.. It might be the Intercooler to Throttle Body hose that gets messed up on these cars. I need to remove the Intercooler to find out.

 

I will also be flushing the P/S fluid too next and the pressure line O-ring, P/S system has got the annoying whine, should be an easy service, hopefully.

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I would say its most likely bad headgaskets. The heads will need to be decked/resurfaced by a machine shop. Use OEM gaskets or Felpro MLS head gaskets. Since you are in there you could slap in some ARP headbolts for extra insurance. I would also replace the timing belt component kit as its due if the service intervals of 105k were followed. Replace the water pump as well with a new OEM thermostat. At this point this will make sure all of the internal cooling components of the engine are in good working order.

 

Before you tackle the headgaskets I would hookup the heater core and see why that was bypassed in the first place. If it was the because the heater core leaks, since you're in South Florida you could bypass it with a looped hose to continue coolant flow for the engine. Or you could just make sure the engine side does have the coolant lines looped so that the coolant flow for the engine isn't just blocked off. Those coolant lines are by the starter/steering column connection point inside the engine bay.

 

The coolant bypass is most likely my plan with the heater core, at least for now. Even though it has been pretty chilly in South FL this year, not very common, but yes no need for the heater in Florida unless I travel up North with it.

 

Previous owner stated the T/B had been done about 10K miles ago, but seeing as to the condition my car came in, I won't be taking any chances.

 

I always try to get OEM components whenever possible, water pump most likely Asin, pulleys, belt, and thermostat will be all OEM for sure. I'm hoping the heads have not been resurfaced yet and if they have, I'm hoping they left material in there before reaching its limit.

 

I used Six Star MLS H/Gs before from a company in Oregon and they were fantastic on my previous '01 Forester L. That car never leaked again.

 

It's a lot of maintenance, services.. I really have my work cut out for with this car.

 

Rear brake shoes most likely need replacement as well, emergency brake is just there for looks now lol so that will be one of the priorities, safety first.

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I am still learning as I go. There are a few things quite different on this car from my previous one. The turbo, Intake and Exhaust timing gears, dual cams and those buckets..

 

I didn't have to deal with that before.. it was just lifters, setting valve clearance on the n/a Forester was just a matter of rotating a screw.. I miss that car, I liked the simplicity of it. But I really like the Outback too, it has a lot of potential!

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So this is my 5th subaru and my first turbo car. There certainly is a learning curve, cult like following and a bunch of people that really appreciate them for what they are. Coming from and just taking a break from the V8 mustang community, I really appreciate the Legacy for what it is. The worm hole of aftermarket parts and modifications is as deep as your credit score allows lol.

 

Good luck with the car and keep the love strong.....it's V-day!

 

Sent from my SM-G996U using Tapatalk

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That is one of the things I like the most, the community. The previous forum was awesome, many people willing to help because they had been there, many had already gone through what I was and were willing to pay it forward.

 

I was a total novice 3 years ago when I had my Forester. I bought it because I always wanted to have a Subaru, even though I always was a Honda fan for two decades. But the Subaru community is really cool. Lots of helpful folks, I honestly couldn’t have done it without them on my previous journey.

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So I passed by my closest Subaru dealer to pick up the P/S O-ring, hoping to fix the annoying P/S pump whine..

 

Part# 34439FG000 The dealer charged me $5.69 for what the website is at $2.22 MSRP, $1.78 when buying online.

 

Not sure if everyone is experiencing the same hike in prices in your areas, but the parts counter guy is telling is taking forever to get items/custom orders..

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Don't worry about the P/S pump whine. Mine screams when its cold outside, like single digits, but once it runs for a few seconds it stops, been doing that for a couple of years now.

 

Even in warm weather, its loud. It started whining when the mechanic replaced the steering rack back in 2020.

 

Mine is a P/S pump I got from NAPA years ago.

 

I noticed you have a cold air intake, the turbo will be louder with that. My son removed the intake silencer from my wagon shortly after I bought the car on June 28 2004. You can hear the turbo with that removed.

Edited by Max Capacity

304,000miles 5/2012 ej257 short block, 8/2011 installed VF52 turbo, @20.8psi, 280whp, 300ftlbs. CHECK your oil, these cars use it.

 

Engine Build - Click Here

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No really, the P/S system needs attention lol If you heard it you'd say so too. The fluid is very dark and old, needs replacement pronto.

 

Regarding the noise I hear, after some research and analyzing it, it looks like it could be two things:

 

1. The noise I hear is very much like a garden hose you just opened the faucet and it makes that humming noise from the water pressure at the faucet. I think this is what might be happening to the coolant stopping at the point where the heater core inlet hose is clamped with pressure pliers. Not sure if you remember I mentioned this, but they sold me the car this way, probably because the heater core was leaking in the cabin. So as soon I step on the gas pedal hard it does that very weird humming noise, and then the car starts overheating. But then again, the car wasn't making this humming noise when I bought it two months ago.. I did notice it was overheating before, just that noise wasn't present.

 

Please listen to video below. Noise is very similar to the one on this person's car.. skip to 1:50 for noise under acceleration. He said he had a boost leak on his car.

 

2. I wonder also if it could be the I/C to T/B big hose, which I hear it tends to come apart on the inside after some time and creates a very similar noise when flooring the gas pedal as describe by other people.

 

Again, not sure if the two issues (overheating/noise) are related to each other, but it appears they are.

 

Once I service the P/S system, I will remove the I/C to find out.

 

The other thing I will do as soon as I can is bypass the heater core so the coolant can do its full cycle normally see how that goes.

 

Like I said, I have my work cut out with this car, but I will get around to it.

Edited by RumblyXT
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Finally serviced the P/S system.. Found the O-ring missing 1/3 of it, no wonder it was so noisy. Whoever worked on this car before was a real hack job professional.

 

Replaced the O-ring and torqued the fitting to 5 ft lbs. Flushed the fluid 3 times after turned the wheels lock to lock several times. It barely whines now, and the steering wheel turns much better.

 

Imo, that hose/fitting would seal much better if it had two bolts securing it to the pump instead of just one, not sure why Subaru designed it this way.

 

491705069_PowerSteeringservice1.jpg.1f20a1ae10c3a951011cbb5fe23fbbf8.jpg

 

2128981732_PowerSteeringservice2.jpg.18657b88f3687b3a83b08a5e7b3c9bc2.jpg

 

848488087_PowerSteeringservice3.jpg.2b115daaa3ae4448be13705e1fb161d4.jpg

Edited by RumblyXT
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Nice work. Looks like an easy enough job. Just using your dealership part number on Amazon brings up 2 o-ring listings. Wonder where the second one goes. Both have different part numbers.

 

Sent from my SM-G996U using Tapatalk

Edited by whitexc
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^^I noticed that too when I was searching for parts. After some digging, it looks like it might be just one configuration: 34488B which can use either O-ring connector: (Black#: 34439AE021) or (Orange# 34439FG000).

 

I went with the orange one after confirming in several places as the one that attaches onto the hose fitting to the oil pump, plus it fit perfect/snug on the fitting.

 

524367426_PSPumpdiagram.jpg.27c8b644c5a2c866ef503b5aa1eb80f5.jpg

 

104984582_PSPumpO-ringconnector.jpg.1162434b291abd5be821648626a94bd9.jpg

Edited by RumblyXT
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304,000miles 5/2012 ej257 short block, 8/2011 installed VF52 turbo, @20.8psi, 280whp, 300ftlbs. CHECK your oil, these cars use it.

 

Engine Build - Click Here

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^^Thank you Max Capacity.

 

As a little tip to avoiding spiling ATF fluid all over the motor and possibly over the pulley, the Walmart Gear lube containers bring a white cone shaped plug which fits perfect in the P/S suction line. Use it to plug the line, no fluid spills whatsoever.

 

I read other members place the O-ring on the pump orifice and then push the suction line onto the O-ring. Imo, that’s what cuts these O-rings. It’s also important to apply only the 5ft lbs of torque to that bolt, as overnighting it is what makes it leak again eventually..

 

1592067920_PSpumpsuctionlineplugged.jpg.e43b32fb5b51eb943658999908adea18.jpg

Edited by RumblyXT
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Finally got around to removing the Intercooler today and there's a quite a few things going on..

 

1796200186_IntercoolerandPVCrelatedwork7.jpg.0dbc85b9f2149e2e18c2d2754f911c17.jpg

 

These were all parts installed on the car by the previous owner.. Found a custom rubber gasket between the Turbo and I/C.

 

898108894_IntercoolerandPVCrelatedwork2.jpg.fe6cdda12b541d632bf2147417731b99.jpg

 

As I had suspected, the inside of the hose connecting from the I/C to the T/B was broken inside. I'm not sure yet if this is the noise I was hearing before under hard acceleration.

 

202095313_IntercoolerandPVCrelatedwork3.jpg.ffdabf3cc67e2e320c87d287b33e8cd1.jpg

 

They squeezed the heck our of the air bypass pipe to be able to fit this aftermarket I/C. Most likely the air flow is reduced there. Hack job!

 

786515844_IntercoolerandPVCrelatedwork4.jpg.6d60d2bfd1a4f9ffefacabbc44c63554.jpg

 

Surprisingly, the T/B blade looked pretty clean. I thought I was going to find it really dirty, but actually got lucky there. However, it's a bit open, not seating as it should.

 

1898340404_IntercoolerandPVCrelatedwork8.jpg.20adde544a66b3770d54b6c85cd1132a.jpg

 

And then I realized why I had noticed some oil residue under the turbo by the center and on top of the right head. That had me worried.

 

But thankfully, it turned out to be the hose that comes out the Intake Duct to connect to the plastic PCV pipe. It is not connected; hence bypass oil leaks out on top of the engine. And it's a pain to get it connected, I can't reach that area unless I remove the intake manifold.

 

I'm surprised this car is still running properly and not having all sort of codes. Then again, they might be hidden.

 

1269337548_IntercoolerandPVCrelatedwork5.jpg.43bc35b127d4b28b5b75a470e5c09856.jpg

 

I have a new PCV assy, but I noticed the one on my car now is missing the white plastic connector. I heard it's not needed. Does that connector need to be hooked on to Intake Duct or the Intake/engine can do without it??

 

1419755296_PCVAssy.jpg.72a91307c1df138d2364c80a70a15fef.jpg

 

Question: Do you guys think it can be bad for the motor if I keep driving with that Intake Duct side hose disconnected from the PCV plastic pipe?

How important is it for air to reach the PCV plastic pipe?

I’m not sure when this might have happened, but I have driven the car now for two months already and so far it has been ok.

I know that doesn’t mean it’s ok, but I really don’t want to remove the Intake Manifold until I get the mid pipe fuel return lines.

 

What do you guys think?

Edited by RumblyXT
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