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2000 Subaru Outback with 183K

Need Help!! I had to replace my radiator and gaskets as something blew back in November…this last weekend I drove in the mountains and noticed that radiator fluid started leaking and the guage started going up…the reservoir was full but then 60 miles later empty…checked oil and it was low and now something is leaking …what do you think it is?

hey, I’m no mechanic, but I’d guess cracked head(worst case)? maybe glogged radiator? where’s is the radiator fluid leaking from? -that might be the best (cheapest) place to start, you can get radiator stop-leak stuff at parts store for less than like $5.00. good luck

My guess is it is coolant but you have 3 choices to choose from. If you ran the engine while the coolant level was real low you may have damaged the engine.

Subaru’s are famous for head gasket problems.

I agree. Sure sounds like a blown head gasket.

Unfortunately, we don’t know exactly what “blew” back in November, but this incident appears to have involved your cooling system.

Now, there is another problem involving the cooling system.
Additionally, the engine is apparently consuming oil at a rapid pace.
None of this bodes well.

As was said, I suspect that a breached head gasket is the problem at this point, but the sequence of events is unclear. It is possible that the cooling system problem back in November caused the engine to run very hot, and that this caused cylinder head/head gasket problems. This would be especially true if the car was driven for any distance while the engine was running very hot.

Or, it is possible that there was already a head gasket problem back in November, and that the mechanic only dealt with some of the “fallout” of that problem, rather than replacing the head gaskets (there are two on this engine).

Part of the longer-term fallout of a breached head gasket is contamination/dilution of the motor oil with coolant. Since coolant is not a lubricant, this leads to greatly increased engine wear. Increased engine wear leads to a high rate of oil consumption.

Although the exact sequence of events is unclear, it really does sound like you have a head gasket problem. Depending on how much damage may have been done to the cylinder heads, and also to bearings, cylinder walls, and other lubrication-dependent parts of the engine, this engine may not be worth repairing.

You need a really good mechanic who is experienced with Subarus. Hopefully he can tell you whether to install a rebuilt engine or whether you would be better-off junking this 10-11 year old car. Part of that decision-making process should involve the condition of the transmission. If the trans is even somewhat problematic, the car should probably be junked at this point.

Sorry for the bad news.