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Subaru Head Gaskets

My 2006 Outback needs a new Head Gasket. I know, this is a big surprise for all Subaru Owners!! Here’s my question: Should I replace it with a Subaru OEM Headgasket, or an Aftermarket Head Gasket?

Considering the large amount of labor involved relative to the cost of the gasket, I would go for the best Subaru gasket available.

Replace the head gaskets with a quality aftermarket head gasket set. The aftermarket looks at the weak areas of the orginal head gasket design and then improves on that design to prevent a simular failure. If you install head gaskets from the dealer, you get the same head gaskets with their weak areas that originally came on the engine.


@Tester the manufacturers do eventually improve their design and offer improved parts.

I’m specifically thinking of Mercedes, GM and Ford
I wouldn’t be surprised if the other guys are the same.

@db4690 If the dealer still has the original head gaskets in their stock, they’re more than willing to sell them off. I don’t think any business is willing to toss millions of dollars of inventory into the dumpster.


It’s my understanding that Subaru improved their head gaskets because of the common failures earlier. I could be wrong. The OP could post to a Subaru Outback forum and get input from owners who may have more up to date information.

…they must not have improved them much by 2006.