Question about 1998 Subaru Legacy

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Radiator fluid leaking down back of engine. Car started smelling real bad, then minutes later began to overheat. Immediately pulled over and shut car off. The only visible signs of anything wrong is r

Car started smelling real bad, then minutes later began to overheat. Immediately pulled over and shut car off. The only visible signs of anything wrong is radiator fluid sprayed all over hoses and hood towards the driver side of engine compartment and radiator fluid leaking on pavement from the back of engine ( furthest from radiator )

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  • Jack Newton
    Jack Newton Mar 23, 2014

    Well it turns out that if you take enough parts OFF, you can dig down to a part with a 6" tube that blew. My mechanic doesn't even know what it goes to but he replaced the tube and the car is running fine

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  • Subaru Master
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There are welsh plugs in the block and head/s at the rear of the motor. They are prone to rusting out . I would say that there was a leak and the coolant under pressure started squirting out causing the overheat. Boiling water escaped under the cap or the hose or tank split . Unfortunately to replace the welsh plugs the motor has to come out as there is no room to work in. So while the motor is out replace all of them as they will all be rusty on the inside. At this point and from your description of immediately shutting down I would not expect and problems with the engine but to be on the safe side it would not hurt to have a compression test done to check head gasket and for cracks.

Posted on Mar 22, 2014

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Posted on Jan 02, 2017

SOURCE: '97 subaru overheating

head gasket most likely.

Posted on Aug 31, 2008

  • 3 Answers

SOURCE: 1990 Subaru Liberty Overheats

Hi,

I had the same problem with my 1993 Liberty LX. Remove the thermostat (located inside bottom radiator hose engine connection - take the connection off and thermostat is inside). Reassemble (minus thermostat), reconnect bottom hose. Slowly (very, very slowly) refill the radiator and remove the bleed plug ( located beside the top hose connection to the radiator - a black square plug with a phillips head cross in the middle). When the radiator is full and clear water (no air bubbles) is coming out of the bleed point, replace the bleed plug and then the radiator cap.

Run the engine for five minutes (approx) or until normal engine temperature is reached. Allow the engine to cool down and recheck the water level - fill if necessary ensuring that the bleed plug is open and clear water is coming out of that point. Replace Bleed plug and then radiator cap. Run engine for five minutes (approx) and then test dive. If the engine overheats keep filling the radiator until there are no air bubbles coming from out of the bleed point.

This fixed my overheating problem. Good luck and safe motoring.

Posted on Sep 21, 2008

  • 1 Answer

SOURCE: Overheat on my 1997 Subaru Legacy GT

Sorry if this might break your heart. I have '98 Outback which is the same 1st generation DOHC 2.5 engine. These are common head gasket problem (I'd say 100% of every engine sooner or later) once you have had your car overheated.

You will not get this comfirmed by just have your mech check the compression on the cylinder because we call it phantom leak (internal leak which can be confirmed with hydrocarbon in coolant). And then you will end up replace every other thing before you could reach the source of problem.

Other signs of this issue are as following: random overheating after freeway or uphills drive, bubbles in coolant overflow tank, oil residue in coolant overflow tank, bubble nioses from the a/c vent.

You're looking at $1000-1500 repair by independent mech as they have to pull engine out to fix the problem. I had mine fixed two weeks ago and now my baby is running like a champ.

google for "Subaru head gasket problem"

Posted on Feb 10, 2009

  • 1 Answer

SOURCE: 90 Subaru Legacy overheating

overheats when driving

Posted on Jul 15, 2009

  • 811 Answers

SOURCE: 1998 Subaru Legacy Wagon heater not working

warm, cool control switch not working 

Posted on Sep 12, 2009

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Your English is very good.

From what you have described, which is a rapid over heating of the radiator coolant fluid and therefore a hot engine condition, it would appear that the thermostat in the engine's cooling system is faulty.

If the thermostat is sticking in the closed or nearly closed position temporarily, there will be no flow or very little coolant flow between the engine and the radiator and the engine will overheat.

You have advised that after the engine is shut off , and radiator coolant fluid has cooled, you re-start the engine and drive the car without the overheating condition occurring again and the radiator coolant temperature is normal. This time there is no overheating because the thermostat is working normally.

You should have the thermostat replaced as soon as possible because allowing the engine to overheat can cause very expensive engine damage.

If you had a continuing overheating condition then I would suspect both the thermostat and the water pump. However as the overheating seems to be only temporary, and clears itself after you have shut down the engine and re-started it 10 minutes later (without further overheating arising) then I think you only have a faulty thermostat.

Please also check that the electric fans which draw air through the radiator are operating. These run on a temperature sensor and will switch on automatically once the radiator coolant fluid reaches a certain temperature and then switch off again when the fluid temperature reduces. You will hear them running once they start up. If these fans are not working the radiator coolant can quickly overheat in various driving and temperature conditions because there will be insufficient air flow through the radiator to cool the fluid. If the temperature sensor is faulty or has died, or if the electric motors running the fans are faulty, the fans will not operate.

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No, you can't add too much coolant. Rather, it does not hurt anything if you do. Did you add it to the radiator, or to the overflow tank?

Let it cool, then remove the radiator cap, and if needed, add coolant to the radiator. Put the cap back on, and fill the overflow tank to the "full - cold" line. Start it and run it a few minutes and look for leaks. If you find no leaks, drive it for a day or two, then let it cool and check it again. If it is down a lot (without overheating), you have a leak somewhere. If you lose enough coolant, that will make it overheat. However, if it overheats, that can cause loss of coolant, when you stop the car, you will see steam and smell coolant, and often hear it boiling.

If it overheats again, make note of when it happens: driving on the highway, or stop-and-go around town. Overheating on the highway usually indicates a clogged radiator, while in-town overheating usually indicates a bad cooling fan (you don't need the fan above about 30 MPH). A bad fan is usually the fan relay, but it can be the fan thermostat (different from the engine thermostat), or a bad fan motor.

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Ford 2000 Taurus

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