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Old 09-17-2020, 05:48 PM   #1
Scooby Newbie
Member#: 518653
Join Date: Sep 2020
Default 09 Impreza - conflicting coolant leak advice

Hey everybody! Thought I'd come to people of experience on this. It's not so much mechanical as it is advice on how to deal with used car dealers/mechanics.

I bought a 2009 Impreza and I've been loving it. However, I decided (after 2 weeks) to check on the fluid levels. The coolant was low in the res and after much research and debate, I decided to fill it with green (not blue) because that's what it had in it already. The color thing really bothered me but that's not the issue.

My local Subaru dealership forwarded me to their Chevy branch. Those guys told me a coolant flush wasn't in order, but the head gasket was leaking. I called the dealer I bought it from, and he urged me to bring it in right away so his mechanic could look at it.

That mechanic looked at it (after the leak was wiped away) and guessed it was most likely the water pump. Well I set out cardboard and in the morning it looked like the leak was to the back right, not the front.

I sent the pictures to the dealer's mechanic and no word yet. But it sounds like they will have to do the head gaskets after all. Should I bother with a third opinion? Or give them a little more time and more or less demand it be fixed or I return it?

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Old 09-18-2020, 08:33 AM   #2
Scooby Newbie
Member#: 19843
Join Date: Jun 2002
Chapter/Region: MWSOC
Location: St. Louis
2000 2.5 RS Sedan
2016 Base 5MT VRP


It's the head gasket leaking. If this subaru dealership is where you bought the car from, they should fix it for free, or you could invoke a 90-day return policy or some such thing...

Lesson learned: When buying a used impreza, always inquire as to whether the head gaskets, timing belt & waterpump have been replaced, etc.. if they don't have records about what engine work has been done, either don't buy it or assume you're going to be replacing head gaskets if you do.
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Old 11-17-2020, 11:09 AM   #3
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Member#: 520347
Join Date: Nov 2020

I am stumped as to what is actually wrong with my 2007 Subaru Impreza 2.5i. It has 130,000 miles on it and I donít know when the head gasket was replaced last. About a month ago I was driving when suddenly the check engine light came on, the Cruise light started blinking, and the temperature gauge dropped down to C. I couldíve sworn I heard the sound of something small and metal getting knocked loose just before this happened. I take it to my mechanic and his diagnostic machine says itís a faulty thermostat. I take it a week later to get the thermostat replaced, and my mechanic says it wasnít a faulty thermostat- there was no thermostat on it at all. The gasket around the thermostat had also been siliconed to the engine. He installs a new thermostat and seal, all is well. He takes it for a test drive and comes back with it smoking- it overheated after about two blocks. It was hissing and smoke pouring everywhere. He said the previous owner mustíve purposely removed the thermostat because of this, possibly to hide a head gasket problem. He removed the thermostat, reinstalled the new seal around the gasket, and tried to do a better job sealing it to the engine. As long as thereís no thermostat, I have no issues with overheating. Sometimes the engine temperature drops if Iím coasting downhill, but even then the heater still works. Itís a little sluggish when I step on the gas to pull out on a hill, but drives just fine in any other situation. Thereís no white smoke, no fluid leaks anywhere, and my coolant is the right color and the level doesnít go down. Thereís no noticeable change in my gas mileage either. The previous owner mentioned an issue with the water pump, but said it was fixed. The timing belt is a little noisy, and the radiator cap might have a small area of dry rot.

What is really wrong with my car?
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Old 09-27-2020, 12:30 PM   #4
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Member#: 518653
Join Date: Sep 2020

Just a quick update for anyone who comes across this thread..

It was the head gasket (thanks Cujo). They replaced that and I had them do the water pump/timing belt because why not.

Now there is a "clanking" sound on startup, near the dash, that quickly goes away.
Possible loss of performance.. but I don't know if that's in my head or not. Seems to lose power here and there, maybe a slight delay in acceleration.

Not sure if I should try the same garage, request the dealer pay for a specialist or return it. Pretty bummed.
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Old 11-09-2020, 03:39 AM   #5
Scooby Newbie
Member#: 520134
Join Date: Nov 2020

Did you figure out what the clanking is? Same problem after hg replacement on gfs car
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