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2001 RBP Subaru 2.5rs
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862 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hey fellow rs25'ers. I could use your help right about now. I really need some knowledgeable people to give me their insight on what this oil leak is and how I should go about fixing it.

I bought this car without knowing it had a oil leak issue. I've owned it for about 1 month now and already there is an oil leak. I'm kind of pissed :devil: off at the guy who sold it to me because this oil leak doesn't just happen over night and a few people I've brought it to have told me this is something that took time to develop. Kind of sickens me how people will lie and tell you the car is in running order just to make a quick buck. Also, he's on the forums none the less! I would have expected for there to be at least some level of decency amongst us Subaru owners. :monkey:

Meh anyways, with that said, I have an idea what this oil leak may be. From reading on the forums, It seems to me that this is not a valve cover gasket issue due to the fact that the valve cover gaskets are on either side of the engine, where as this leak is coming from the front of the engine. BUT I don't know for sure. I don't know if it is apparent but the rubber gasket that is noticeable in the first image, at the points where you see the heavy oil drips the gasket is loose and looks like its just been eaten away or something. I just really need to figure out what the hell kinda leak this is.

My sister: She said it was a head gasket issue.
Cheveron Oil Change guy: He said it was a cam cover gasket.

Below is some detailed pics and I labeled them for your quick understanding.

Close up
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Same Image a little further back
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Same Image from opposite angle
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2001 RS 2.5
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640 Posts
no help from me, but thanks for showing me where my thermostat is, but

It's coming from the front... hrm, maybe the oil pump pulley? Pull off the guard on the belts and take a look. Maybe the oil pump pulley? Random guess. Just spiting something out for you @ 3AM. Pardon my ignorance
 

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1998 Forester on Orange 57F
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4,129 Posts
looks like front main seal or oil pump seal. Going to have to clean it all to find out. Pull off all of the plactics also. Probably a front main. I would replace the front main, cam seals and reseal the oilpump. Just to make sure.
 

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00 OBS Silverthorn Metallic
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4,184 Posts
Brydon said:
looks like front main seal or oil pump seal. Going to have to clean it all to find out. Pull off all of the plactics also. Probably a front main. I would replace the front main, cam seals and reseal the oilpump. Just to make sure.
+1. You have a major oil leak up front. And chances are there are more than one. Just like Brydon said, cam seals, crank seal, oil pump reseal, and reseal your piston pin plug.

The only thing I would really be concerned about is your timing belt. That is a ton of oil and if any of it got on the belt, the belt is junk. If I were you, I would seriously consider replacing at least the timing belt and tensioner while you are replacing those seals. Also make sure you get the rubber sealing strip between the front and rear timing belt covers on the bottom. All of that oil causes it to swell and its unusable.
 

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2001 RBP Subaru 2.5rs
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862 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
thanks so far everyone! Anyone else have any idea? Also, could someone point me in the direction of a list of all the part numbers for our cars. I really like the fact that on subaruparts.com I can just type in the part number and the part I need just appears.

Also, would I need to pull the engine to examine this stuff?

Also, is this a typical enough job that even a non subaru specialist shop could do?
 

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MY00 Subaru Impreza 2.5RS BRP
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2,609 Posts
Hey, there is a new Subaru dealership in SJ area, Capital Subaru or something like that. Just walk in and check for the part numbers and prices. Or you can always check with your shop, subaruparts.com, or subarugenuineparts.com for part numbers and prices.
 

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5,143 Posts
Brydon said:
looks like front main seal or oil pump seal. Going to have to clean it all to find out. Pull off all of the plactics also. Probably a front main. I would replace the front main, cam seals and reseal the oilpump. Just to make sure.
I lack the knowledge of brydon and solbey, But I Definitely would have said those 2 items as my first geusses.
 

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2001 RBP Subaru 2.5rs
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862 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
very cool. thank you all. I'm getting it looked at this week and then when I find more info from the mechanics on what it is and how to stop it I post up the info for everyone else
 

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01 GC6 AW
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230 Posts
Sorry to bump up an old thread, I have the same problem right now. I recently had my Head Gaskets done with a Timing Belt Kit and seals replaced.

looks like front main seal or oil pump seal. Going to have to clean it all to find out. Pull off all of the plactics also. Probably a front main. I would replace the front main, cam seals and reseal the oilpump. Just to make sure.
Question is, what do I look for after it is cleaned up to find out if it is the Oil Pump or Front main seal? There may have been a chance that it wasn't sealed correctly when my head gaskets were done...
 

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'MURRICA!
Hybrid Camry
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5,702 Posts
oil pump and front main are within 1/2" of eachother (and directly in line, the front main is actually located inside the front of the oil pump), so you're got gonna be able to tell without taking the timing cover off. Which means the crank pulley has to come off. And if you had a shop do your timing belt, I'm willing to bet you're not gonna do that either.

It's a subaru. They're known for oil leaks. Check the oil every other week and get used to it.
 

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01 GC6 AW
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230 Posts
Shietttt, thanks for the info! Broken Wallet season time... it's sad to see it leak oil more than my little drops from head gaskets, I probably should have left it alone =(
 

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94 Legacy Wagon, 5 speed, 2.2
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Working on my first subie (2.2) & have been chasing oil leaks for 3 days now. It was a soupy mess, but was a $700 car so I expected as much :) Mine was leaking all around the oil pump. Was surprised to find no gasket between oil pump & block but I guess that is factory spec. The felpro front seal kit I picked up came with a gasket so I used it with a very thin layer of rtv on both sides, will see how it holds up. Also there is a plate with 5 or 6 screws on the back of the pump that are known to loosen up & leak. If you decide to open it up id plan on cleaning out all the oil & using threadlock on the screws when they go back in. I didn't do this and it has me a bit worried.

Also I noticed my driver side cam housing (cam support?) was leaking between it & the block. There is a large but thin o-ring in there that was crispy, evidently that area is subject to lots of heat as the rear timing cover on that side was slightly melted around the bolt holes. I don't have a dealership nearby so I found a close match in a $4.99 "Help" package at Auto-zone. The cam seal had a little bit of seepage & got replaced too. The pass side was totally clean so I didn't go in there this time around.

Other than that the valve covers both were pretty bad & driver side was black (prob due to cam housing o-ring) so they got cleaned & felpro seals which came with new bolt seals. Driver side also was spiderwebbed with tiny cracks, (due to somebody torquing on the bolts to try to stop the leak?) so ill be looking for a replacement.

Was gonna do the oil pan too but after some reading it seems it's rarely the cause & a pain to get to those rear bolts.

Put it through a heat cycle last night (fans on & off a few times) & so far its clean this morning. Will taker her for a spin today & see how she does.
 
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