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Head gasket replacement

I have a 2007 Subaru Forester X Sport Model. I just passed 86,000 miles - much of that open road driving. My head gaskets need to be replaced. This seems somewhat early. I recently switched from using regular motor oil to a synthetic blend that the dealership suggested. Is there any history suggesting that switching lubricants might cause the head gaskets to deteriorate?

NO!!! Unless you run the oil level very low and overheat the engine. Subarus have had recurring head gasket problems, so your post comes as no surprise.

Your engine will run well on either type of oil, as long as it is the right viscosity and you keep the level topped up.

If this is the turbo-charged model you should have been using synthetic all along. The type of oil you use, however, has NOTHING to do with the head gaskets.

Your car is not very old. I suggest you approach Subaru directly and see if you can get some help from them.

If you can document that the car has been maintained by the book they might pay for part or all of the repair. It has been maintained by the book, hasn’t it?

The car has been maintained very well - especially with regards to the regular oil changes and keeping the oil level properly maintained. I do a lot of high speed interstate driving, however. Did not think there was any causal relationship, but thought I would ask. Have a 100,000 mile warranty, so Subaru will take care of the problem in any event.

“It has been maintained by the book, hasn’t it?”

Not if he has been using non-synthetic oil in a turbo-charged engine!

Approach Subaru on this. 86k is way too early. Just noticed you have a 100k warranty, nice!

Oil change has nothing to do with this.

Subaru made an impression 2005+ they corrected the issue which is well known from 1996-2004. However there have been some other posts about this failure for non-turbo 2.5L Subaru motors.

Subaru finally changed their design of the entire motor this year which traces its routes back to 1989. Hopefully it will be more stout in terms of head gaskets.

Not a turbo-charged engine

You CAN use non-synthetic engine oil in the turbo motor. Subaru does not specify this until 2011 on new models. They have NEVER specified synthetic motor oil prior to this year.

BTW running problem free in a 2004 WRX(85k) and 2005 LGT(107k) both turbo’s with dino oil changes every 3k-4k miles. Crossing my fingers :slight_smile:

That’s really good news! Highway driving won’t hurt it, and neither will switching from regular to systhetic.

Since it’s not a turbo, synthetic won’t do it any good either. The dealer recommends it because it’s more profitable.

Thanks for the feedback, all. Good to be able to participate in this. You all will be amused to know that Tom and Ray used to work on my VW Beetle in Cambridge back in the late 70’s.

Have your mechanic first try simply re-torquing the head gaskets and see if that stops the leak issues.