My 2002 Subaru Outback has been costing me a lot of money. I had to change the transmission 2 years ago. Now the head gasket has blown which is another 2000 dollars. Can you tell me if there is something defective with my car?
The head gaskets (you have two, and both need to be replaced) are a known issue with Outbacks of the '97-'02 vintage, once they get past ~90k miles. So, yes, there is a defect. Yours is not unusual in this regard, unfortunately. The updated head gaskets, used when replacing the originals, are not prone to failure.
As to the trans, the question arises of whether you maintained it properly with a fluid change every 3 yrs/30k miles. When this is not done, transmission failure can occur any time after ~90k miles, and that applies to all makes of cars. What is the maintenance history of that first transmission?
No bad luck and a common issue (Head gaskets).
…and possibly bad maintenance, in the case of the transmission.
Yes did the maintenance every 30,000 miles
Then you have REALLY bad luck.
I have never had a transmission failure on any of my cars, including a Dodge, a Volvo, a VW, a Chevy, a Ford, a Honda, and 2 Subarus, despite odometer mileage exceeding 100k on most of them. I chalk up this good record to good maintenance, but bad luck can just happen in spite of good maintenance.
Plenty of automatic transmissions run 150k or longer with original fluid. My entire wife’s family’s follows this protocol even with cars known to fail early(Caravans) and they have not yet with 150k-200k.
However changing it every 50k-60k miles is cheap insurance.
Park it down by the fence with the rest of them and bring the keys and plates back to the office…Subaru’s make up about 5% of the cars on the road. They are mentioned in about 30% of the threads on this board…
While Subarus make up only 5% of the cars on the road, I think they make up a much higher proportion of the cars driven by NPR listeners.
“While Subarus make up only 5% of the cars on the road, I think they make up a much higher proportion of the cars driven by NPR listeners.”
That’s a very interesting observation. I wonder what percentage of NPR listeners drive a Volvo, VW, Subaru, or a Prius…?
There have been studies in the past indicating that an unusually high percentage of NPR listeners drive Subarus. Other studies have indicated an unusually high percentage of Subaru drivers with graduate degrees. When visiting campuses such as Princeton, U. of Penn, Yale, Harvard, U. of Vermont, Williams College, and a host of others, I have noticed that Subarus are present to a great extent.
Thus, I believe that the relatively high percentage of posts regarding Subarus is really the result of the demographics of NPR listenership, coupled with the demographics of Subaru ownership.
…Or that the Ivy Leaguers who purchase Subarus haven’t a clue about how to keep them alive…
Academics often do not have a practical bend, but they read a lot. Volvos and Subarus are considered “moral” cars for some reason. That was true of Volvos 30 years ago when they eschewed the “wretched excess” common with US cars.
However, moral superiority and common sense do not necessarily go together. A professor friend of mine is on his 3rd Volvo, but at least he is a practical engineer and even fixes his own sailboat.
“Or that the Ivy Leaguers who purchase Subarus haven’t a clue about how to keep them alive.”
I think that this is also part of the situation.
Being a well-educated person does not always include being knowledgeable about cars and their upkeep.
Of course, one only has to open the glove compartment and read the details provided by the manufacturer, but as we all know from this forum, that does not seem to happen with the bulk of the populace, and this probably includes many of those Ivy League educated/NPR-listening/Subaru owners.
"“While Subarus make up only 5% of the cars on the road, I think they make up a much higher proportion of the cars driven by NPR listeners.”
That’s a very interesting observation. I wonder what percentage of NPR listeners drive a Volvo, VW, Subaru, or a Prius…?"
Bob Edwards drives a Volvo. Need I say more?
This jerks my chain" “There have been studies”. What and where are these studies? I also see people say “Studies show”. That is also BS to back up what you want to say with authority behind you and I say it’s Balderdash!
Possibly you are correct but undefined “Studies” do not make it so.
I do remember receiving press releases from Subaru citing these studies, but I do not have the citations handy. Trust me–I did read this information.
If you are really curious, you can likely use Google to research it.
I raised this point last year since every third problem seemed to be a Subaru or a Volvo. Most poster were in the East where Subarus made more sense with the heavy snowfall.
So true. Studies are always paid for by someone. Government studies are no better. Someone with a budget ordered the study and that person has an agenda. I’ve seen a study that didn’t come up with the right results sent back to get the results “right” this time.
Is this what they call “mission creep?”
This discussion is no help to the OP.