Cause of head gasket leak

#1

(You were all helpful with previous question about Subaru head gasket leak; here’s a follow up). Just 6 weeks before I was told that my 2003 Outback with 77,000 miles had leaking head gaskets, the same dealer service department replaced the valve cover gaskets, “performed BG major transmission service” (including replacing gasket, performed “BG power steering service” and replaced drive belts. Could any of that work have contributed to the subsequent leaking head gaskets?

#2

I don’t think there’s a connection between the previous service and the head gasket leak, and I don’t see how anything you’ve listed could have “contributed” to the head gasket failure.

Are you absolutely certain the head gaskets are leaking? Does your Subaru exhibit any symptoms? Loss of coolant? Overheating?

What does “BG” stand for? Could it, perhaps, be “Buck Grabbing,” or “Buck Gathering?”

#3

No, there is no connection. As mcparadise asked–What are the symptoms indicating failure of one of the head gaskets?

#4

I think the dealer used BG Products Inc line of additives or cleaning procedures with cleaners/additives for the two services, trans and power steering. While the trans service might not be a bad idea without any cleaners/additives, the power steering service is pretty much an unnecessary profit maker. Certainly not called for by the Subaru maintenance schedule.

#5

No, head gasket failure is a Subaru related problem.

#6

There is no connection and Subarus have always been prone to head gasket problems.
JMHO, but I think most of the problems are caused by:
An aluminum block and head and no subsequent head bolt retorque after break-in.

I’ve done more Subaru head gaskets than I can even start to remember and I always Copper Coat new gaskets and torque the head bolts in 3 stages, followed by a short run-in period and a retorque.
Never had one fail on me yet.

About 25 years ago Subaru had a spell in which head gasket failures were not common unless the engine was overheated, etc.
What was the one factor involved that is not involved now?
Subaru recommended a head bolt retorque at 1000 miles.
The head bolts used now are TTY (torque to yield) but metal is metal IMHO and metal expands and contracts with heating and cooling. Factor in an all-aluminum engine and eventually something is going to loosen up.