Yet another 2005 Subaru Forester question: A very good friend of mine (Lin) has an '05 Subaru Forester with around 85,000 miles (her father had given her the car back in 2007 - he lived in Colorado, so the early history of the car was that is was driven on highways and in the mountains; he too very good care of the vehicle doing regular maintenance). Lin lives in Chicago, so from '07 to present the car has mainly been used in her daily commute - city traffic, potholes, etc. The car ran well until one year ago nearly to the day: (FYI: During all this time the Money Light has been coming on, and is re-set by the technicians). All of a sudden it started running rough, and began stalling occasionally. She brought it to the Subaru dealer to get fixed (she always brings it there, to the same location) who said the head gasket was leaking, and she needed to have the engine rebuilt. $6,000 later the problem was supposedly fixed; the car ran well for about 3 months, when one rainy day she was driving to work and it started running rough again and died at idle at a stoplight. She got the car started once more, but died yet again at the next stoplight. She brought the car back to the dealer's shop who said she needed a tune-up - they were telling her that the coils and wires may have gotten wet, thus causing the car to stall. $800 later and the car has new plugs, wires, and coils. However, the car was still running rough at idle and every now and then would stall. She brought the car back to the dealer's shop, who said she needed an O2 Sensor - $400 later, and that's replaced as well. The car still ran the same - rough. 6 months later and the car stalls out once again when she was at idle: She brought the car back to the dealer's shop yet again, who said she needed another tune-up. Another $800 later and new plugs, wires, and coils. She was told that the plugs were fouled from the engine being flooded at some point. The car still runs rough - personally, I think the replacement is probably leaking. If not, maybe a vacuum leak, failing MAF Sensor (the dealer wants $240 for the part alone, and another $150+ in labor), or need for a new PVC Valve. Secondarily to this I was thinking (long shot) that she might need a new Fuel Pump Relay, or maybe Fuel Pump. The technicians at the dealer's shop are telling her she needs new Motor Mounts, at a cost of $800 installed. The car's engine isn't making a 'thud' etc. I think Lin is being taken, and I think her car is toast. If anything, I think she needs to have a Block Test, Compression Test, etc - I'm not sure what to tell her, but I suspect she's being taken for a ride (she's 60 years old, and single - I think they see her walk through the door and know she's going to spend money on that car). I am trying to convince her to take her car to my mechanic, who is awesome (he drives at the local speedway here, and has built many cars from the frame up) - he always shows me what the problem is, the new part, how to replace it/fix the problem, how to diagnose issues, and always checks the old part her removed and shows it to me and explains why/how it failed). Help? Thoughts? Ideas? Prayers? I still think her Subaru is ready for the 'ol rice burner in the sky, right over that Rainbow Bridge (where it can finally frolic with the Toyota's and Honda's from like, the 1960's and 70's that have finally bitten the dust)!
Wow, that doesn't surprise me for being a Subaru product. You are going to put more money into it than it's worth by going to the dealer, find a mechanic that knows what the heck he is doing.