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Subaru oil guzzler

I have a 2009 Subaru impreza outback sport, that guzzles oil. As soon as I reached 6,500 miles (having changed the oil the 1st Time at 3,000 miles) all of my interior check lights came on. 1st my tire pressure light came on then check engine light, then every warning light I had. I took it to the dealer and they told me my oil was dangerously low. There were no leaks so they told me whomever changed my oil last clearly didn’t fill it all the way. Low and behold about 3500 miles later the same thing happened. Unfortunately due to a broken arm I swapped cars with a family member (my Subaru is a stick) and couldn’t take it back to the dealership, just had the family member fill it with oil. Eventually had it checked again by a different mechanic, again no leaks, no explanation. Now I just make sure every 3,000 miles I get my oil changed. Any thoughts? Or has anyone else encountered this problem with their Subaru???

Turbocharged ?
An 09 Requires Oil Changes Every 3,750 Miles.
It Also Requires Checking The Oil Frequently In Between Changes And Adding Make-Up Oil As Needed.


I don’t understand. Instead of checking your oil as your owner’s manual requires, you just change the oil more frequently and hope it never gets low enough to kill your engine?

I have a 2009 Legacy (my 3rd Legacy). None of these vehicles EVER had an oil problem. My mechanic has my car for service EVERY 3,000 miles at which time he adds the mineral Molybdenum to each oil & oil filter change. He performs 11 different services at these mileage intervals.
If one wants a car to serve faithfully, one must service the car FAITHFULLY.

It would appear that it is using three quarts of oil or so in 3000 miles. That is 1000 miles per quart. While it is more than I’d like to see, Subaru (or any other manufacturer) will not consider it to be excessive oil consumption. You may have damaged the engine, causing it to use even MORE oil, by running it low on oil the first time. The dealer is already aware that you messed up. There will be no warranty repair.

You need to read the owner’s manual to find out where the ENGINE dipstick is. If it’s an automatic, IIRC there are three dipsticks and three things to keep full, the engine, transmission, and front differential. Then check your oil YOURSELF with every tank of gas until you can find out exactly how much oil it is using. Then you may be able to drop back to every other tank or every third. In any case, check it, and keep it topped off. Otherwise you may ruin an engine that could easily go on like this for another 100K miles. Remember, oil is cheaper than an overhaul.

check your oil YOURSELF with every tank of gas

@MG McAnick: Well said!

These cases are just so hard to fathom - when a car owner is stunned when their mechanic tells them their car was dangerously low on oil.

That said, I can understand the reluctance to check oil when filling up at a gas station. There are many good reasons why this is the most unpleasant place to check the oil level: you may be short on time, you are probably wearing clean clothing, you may get your hands dirty, the engine is warm or hot and it’s just uncomfortable to open the hood and lean over the engine, there are often other people waiting for the pump you are using, you may not want to keep a supply of oil in your car.

A better option is to get in the habit of regularly checking oil at home after the car has been sitting a while - or overnight - so it’s cooled down. Pick a moment when you are doing home chores and dressed appropriately, and when you can conveniently wash your hands afterward. Keep a few quarts of oil at home so you can add half a quart if that’s all that’s needed, then store the remainder. This approach may be less advantageous for condo dwellers than those with homes having an attach garages, so it’s not a solution for everyone, but it may be helpful for some.

One additional point; just because the oil level is not low enough to trip th eoil pressure light does not mean it has sufficient oil for long life.

Oil is your engine’s lifeblood. It lubricates your engine’s parts, removes heat from the cylinder walls, and removes contaminants such as microscopic metal particles, tiny amounts of fuel that wash by the rings during compression, and combustion byproducts that get forced past rings by the explosions (known as “blowby”). The larger particles get carried to the filter and trapped there, the fluid contaminants and the more microscopig particles remain suspended in the pending the next oil change. The older the engine gets, the more this happens.

Contaminants make the oil less effective as a lubricant. Just as more pancake batter makes the pancakes thicker, less volume of oil to suspend the contaminamts makes the oil less able to flow into the small cavities where it needs to go. Eventually it becomes goop and collects in places that i should be flowing through. Like cholesteral in the arteries of a fat man (I HAVE to go on a diet!).

By letting your oil repeated run that low, you’re repeatedly driving around with thicker and thicker gunk in your engine rather than a free flowing lubricant. You’ve already reduced your engine life by an amount that will definitely lead to premature loss of combustion, loss of other things such as bearing life, and loss of your engine. Your current level of oil usage confirms that premature wear has already occurred…

You need to begin keeping your oil level above the fill line on the dipstick. I’m sorry you’re having to learn this the hard way.