Overheating subaru

Asked by Apr 01, 2016 at 11:08 PM about the Subaru Outback

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

I have a 1996 Subaru outback that kept
overheating. They checked the radiator and it's
perfectly fine. I had the thermostat changed today
and it is still over heating. What else could be
wrong with it?

15 Answers

1,670

Radiator fine because not leaking? It still could be restricted inside. How bout cooling fan does it turn on?

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.
16,605

Did you replace the thermostat with an aftermarket or original Subaru part? It could make a difference.

223,315

Could be a failed head gasket. The Subaru's are know for this condition and common. Have your mechanics perform a cylinder pressure test or leak down test to verify.

3,530

Cylinder pressure and leak down tests are often false negatives for the internal high pressure leakage from the combustion chamber through the head gasket into the cooling system, eventually hopelessly overcoming the heat-sinking ability of said system. Often this failure is not measurable cold or steady-state. Repair can ONLY be accomplished by a very laborious replacement of both HGs. Success rate is relatively poor, as the overly-fragile design of this first DOHC 2.5i is such that bottom ends often fail even after a very careful HG job. Subaru learned to simplify to a more rugged SOHC 2.5i in 2000; these are still plagued with weak HGs, but since they're usually EXTERNAL breaches that don't often stress the motors, the great majority of these later HG replacements are durable longterm. I STRONGLY suggest you simply send this 20 yr old chariot to a salvage yard, as otherwise you will probably pull your hair out if you spend $1600 on HGs and then throw a connecting rod 6 months later. It's happened too many times!

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
5,995

if you do have 2.5 and it is head gasket related, you should search for a 2.2 swap. Seems common in that era.

3,530

Yes, it can be done, and was stock in 1995 with the manual tranny. But it was so underpowered trying to push the heavier OB that Subaru had to tighten up the gearing to get ANY acceleration out of it, resulting in a screamingly-overdriven beast on the highway. The autobox's taller gearing would be quieter, but has REALLY disastrously slow performance, so I would't try it. The 2.2 really needs a lighter load....

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.
3,530

Error: I meant 1996, the first year of the "true" Outback, as the 1995 was just two-tone paint silliness.

16,605

Here's the history of the Subaru Outback iteration. https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Subaru_Outback

2 out of 2 people think this is helpful.
3,530

How is this helpful...especially as it has errors?

1,670

All this insight and no comment from Sam0916?...lol

5,995

it's okay. new members may or may not know about subscribing with email notifications to responses. Pretty typical but no big deal ;)

16,605

Well, well, well, the Subaru Outback Wikipedia page was edited 12 days ago. If you think you have more correct information, please send your comments to them. As a point of information, here's another website noting that the Subaru Legacy Outback was first manufactured in Japan in 1995. It was called the Grand Legacy Wagon in Japan, the Legacy Outback in Australia and the Outback in Australia. And, the Wikipedia page is a direct link from the Subaru of America Wikipedia page, so, if you have any direct evidence to the contrary bring it to their attention, not mine. You opened the door with the useless phase that the 1995 was just "two tone paint silliness"... I have no idea where you came up with that. My only reason for bringing up the information was in response to your assertion that the 1996 was the first " true Outback ", I actually considered purchasing one a 1995, but, decided on a 1995 Honda Accord instead. Here's the line they use to market the Subaru Legacy Outback in 1995, "The new theme line, “Subaru. Driven By What’s Inside,” replaces “The Beauty Of All-Wheel Drive,” which was introduced in 1995" Read this website below, it states that the Outback started in 1995. http://www.autoevolution.com/cars/subaru-outback- 1998.html#aeng_subaru-outback-1998-25

16,605

In case you don't recall, Paul Hogan from Australia, advertised the Subaru Legacy Outback for several years on television, showing how rugged the car was in the Outback of Australia.

3,530

Geez, Mark, AL manufacturers start producing early in the PRECEDING model year. Where've you been? The first true raised suspension 2.5i MODEL YEAR OB in NA was the 1996, which probably started production in late spring 2005. That was preceded by a 2005 "fake Outback" that used the 2.2i and was simply a Legacy Wagon with two-tone paint. I bought, serviced, and sold a few of them. But once Hogan got on TV the raised suspension in 2006 took over, introducing the public to a slew of bad 2.5i DOHC motors. Stop opening encyclopedias and claiming to be an instant expert, Mark...or at least understand that "starting production date" and "model year" can be even more than a year apart....

1,670

Sam oh Sam where for art thou Sam...lol I gotta laugh, all this for an overheating Subaru!?

Your Answer

Add photo

Related Questions

  • 98 Subaru Overheating 6 answers

    I have a '98 Subaru Legacy outback, a couple of months ago it started overheating randomly once a week or every other week or so. Now, before you all aske like everyone else, I check my fluids once...

    Subaru Outback

    -

    Maintenance & Repair

  • Subaru Overheating issue 24 answers

    2006 Legacy Outback • 2.5i • 148K miles: I was driving home after visiting my handicap sister one Sunday evening (as most other Sunday's). It was a beautiful day (55 degrees). I was 45º by now in the ...

    2006 Subaru Outback 2.5i Wagon

    -

    Maintenance & Repair

  • 2003 subaru outback overheating 6 answers

    changed thermostat still overheats whats wrong

    2003 Subaru Outback Base Wagon

    -

    Maintenance & Repair

  • 1999 Subaru over heats 7 answers

    Put a used engine in a 1999 Subaru legacy outback bled cooling system car overheats

    2000 Subaru Outback Base Wagon

    -

    Maintenance & Repair

  • Multi-layered head gaskets on Subaru vehicles? 13 answers

    What year did this really start for the Subaru Outback?

    2010 Subaru Outback 2.5i Limited

    -

    General

Outback

Looking for a Used Outback in your area?

CarGurus has 29,744 nationwide Outback listings starting at $1,200.

ZIP:

Search Subaru Outback Questions

Subaru Outback Experts

#1 Markw1952
Markw1952
Reputation 5,650
#2 TheSubaruGuruBoston
TheSubaruGuruBoston
Reputation 1,710
#3 FordNut
FordNut
Reputation 1,490
View All

Related Models For Sale

Used Subaru Forester
255 Great Deals out of 22,793 listings starting at $1,499
Used Subaru Legacy
208 Great Deals out of 16,088 listings starting at $1,300
Used Subaru Impreza
176 Great Deals out of 13,341 listings starting at $1,817
Used Honda CR-V
811 Great Deals out of 59,372 listings starting at $1,200
Used Toyota RAV4
642 Great Deals out of 61,987 listings starting at $2,450
Used Subaru Crosstrek
20 Great Deals out of 11,000 listings starting at $19,900
Used Toyota 4Runner
315 Great Deals out of 20,549 listings starting at $2,295
Used Toyota Highlander
475 Great Deals out of 25,073 listings starting at $1,500
Used Subaru XV Crosstrek
61 Great Deals out of 2,143 listings starting at $8,950
Used Honda Accord
811 Great Deals out of 81,613 listings starting at $899
Used Toyota Tacoma
619 Great Deals out of 35,127 listings starting at $2,155
Used Toyota Camry
1,091 Great Deals out of 96,268 listings starting at $1,250
Used Subaru Impreza WRX
37 Great Deals out of 1,139 listings starting at $1,500
Used Jeep Grand Cherokee
845 Great Deals out of 68,679 listings starting at $864
Used Ford Escape
1,116 Great Deals out of 90,856 listings starting at $1,295