Step By Step: Subaru Outback Head Gasket Replacement!

How can you do the Subaru outback head gasket replacement of your own without going for a mechanic? Yes, it is possible if you have some general knowledge about the car engine.

If you are facing a problem with the head gasket failure, replacing or repairing the head gasket in any service shop can be costly. 

To make your work easy and save you some bucks, we are here with the process of head gasket replacement of your Subaru Outback. After you read this, you will be able to replace it independently.

Method Of Subaru Outback Head Gasket Replacement

The head gasket failures can cause different types of problems. It starts with the external oil leaks, and later, it also causes coolant leaks and overheating. Then the replacement of the gasket becomes urgent.

Tools And Equipment Needed

The tools and equipment needed for replacing the head gasket are-

  • New head gasket set
  • Coolant, motor oil, oil filter
  • Full metric socket set
  • Spark plug socket
  • Breaker bars, ratchets, and extensions
  • Full metric wrench set
  • Various air and power tool
  • Various sets of pliers
  • Strap wrench and oil filter wrench
  • Brake parts cleaner and rag
  • Wire brushes
  • Trim tools and pick toolset
  • Drain pan
  • Torque wrench
  • Jack and jack stands

Steps To Follow: Subaru Outback Head Gasket Replacement

After arranging all the equipment you need now, you can go for real work. To replace the head gasket, follow these steps below:

Step 1: Turn off the Engine

Choose a suitable place for your work as it needs a roomy place to perform. Place your car in a safe and spacious working area where you will be able to work freely. Now you have to turn off the engine and remove the keys. 

Step 2: Put on safety gears

For these types of mechanical work, safety is essential. You will need rubber shoes, rubber gloves and an apron over your dress. These will protect you from the car engine’s battery shock, dirt, and oils.

Step 3: Remove the battery

First, you have to disconnect the battery. Remove the battery’s negative terminal. Then disconnect the positive terminal. Remove the bracket and pull the battery out of it.

Step 4: lift your vehicle

At this stage, you have to lift your vehicle using jack stand or any suitable lift stand. Raising the car will help you drain fluids and remove the exhaust pipe. 

Step 5: Drain all the fluid

Lose the radiator drum petcock with the help of a screwdriver and drain it into a drain pan. After draining the radiator remove the oil drain plug and drain it completely.

Step 6: Remove exhaust front pipe

After that, spray the studs and nuts to come out quickly. Then remove four exhaust flange bolts and take the whole front pipe off the car.

Step 7: Remove bolts and hoses

Lower the car and remove the radiator, air filter box, and intake boots. Do not remove the fans. It is on the passenger sid.

After that, remove the drive belt shield. Loose the clamp of the radiator hose and remove it.

Step 8: Disconnect the alternator, power steering pump, and AC compressor

Now, remove the battery cables from the alternator, and remove the bolts. You can remove it with a pry bar. Take the power steering pump bracket out with the pump and set it aside.

Also Read: Subaru No Crank No Start: 4 Reasons And Fixes Explained

Lose the AC tensioner belt pulley to remove the AC belt and remove the AC bracket from the engine block. Disconnect the AC compressor and hang it on one side carefully. Also, disconnect the oxygen sensors.

Step 9: Remove and clean the cylinder heads

After that, dismount the intake manifold, timing belt, valve cover, and gaskets. Now we will take out the cylinder heads. But before releasing it, you have to clean the debris from the outside of the block.

When the outside is appropriately cleaned, then remove the cylinder heads. Then, clean the surface thoroughly with a rag and cleanser.

Step 10: Send the heads to local Auto Parts store’s machine shop

In this step, you can send the heads to the local Auto Parts store’s machine shop for re-machine. It may take an hour to re-machining Subaru heads. 

Step 11: Remove the old gasket

Now to remove the old gasket, you can use any blade that will help you take off easily.

Clean all the gasket materials. Do not forget the cross-member area and plastic gravel shield where oil accumulates much.

Step 12: Reinstall the cylinder heads and head gasket

When the cylinder heads come back after re-machining, install that with new head gaskets and assemble a new camshaft seal. While mounting it, make sure to follow an accurate cylinder head torque sequence.

Oh, remember, you might need new head gasket bolts for 2005 to more recent models like 08- 2011 Subaru outback head gasket replacements.

Step 13: Re-assemble the engine

Now the final task- re-assemble the engine. After you have mounted everything correctly, fill the fluids. Connect the battery.

Next task is to rank the engine, don’t start. And crank until you get proper oil pressure. Leave the car idle for 5-10 minutes. In this time, the PCM will re-process.

This Video Will Help You Too!

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

How Much Does Subaru Outback Head Gasket Replacement Cost?

To replace Subaru head gasket, it may cost you between $909 and $1147 for the associated labor and $715 and $832for the new gasket set. So the average cost of replacing the head gaskets of Subaru outback may cost you about $1,624 and $1,979.

Do all Subarus Have Head Gasket Problems?

Not all Subaru models are afflicted with gasket problems. Four popular models are identified with gasket problems. The models are the 2001-2009 Subaru Forester, 2001-2009 Subaru Outback, 2006-2008 Subaru Impreza, and the 2006 Subaru Baja have the gasket problem.

At What Mileage Do Subaru Head Gaskets Fail?

Generally, the Subaru head gaskets fail after 100,000 miles. It needs repair or replacement before any damage happens to the engine.

Final Words

Did you get the method for how to perform Subaru outback head gasket replacement? If not, then read out the process without skipping anything. We hope you will be able to do this on your own.

If you do not have any experience with car engines, it’s better to go for a professional replacement; otherwise, it may cause damage to your car.

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