Last post on Sep 23, 2012 at 9:01 AM
You are in the Subaru Legacy & Outback
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Subaru Legacy, Subaru Outback, Sedan, Wagon
#2 of 6 2003 Outback timing belt failed after 1 yr - engine destroyed
Sep 17, 2012 (8:02 am)
I have had a lot of repairs in the past year and a half on my 2003 outback (well over $5,000). The timing belt just went and I was told I need a new engine by the shop AAA towed to. Looking back at my records I see that Subaru replaced the timing belt in May of 2011. I only put 12,000 miles on the car since then. Is there a warranty on the belt /work? Waiting to hear back from Subaru. I thought timing belts were supposed to last a lot longer. Is there any chance they would replace the engine since the timing belt caused the problem. I really do not want to put more $ into this car. The plan was to get a new car and part out the old car until I realized the timing belt was replaced only 12,000 miles ago at 93,707 miles. I now have 106,459 miles on the car. Would love for Subaru to replace the engine w/o any cost to us. Any chance of that happening? Don't know much about cars. Is there anything that will help our case?
#3 of 6 Re: 2003 Outback timing belt failed after 1 yr - engine destroyed [chrisp813]
Sep 17, 2012 (1:42 pm)
Well, I think it depends on the details. Did the timing belt itself cause the failure (due to defect) or was it something else, such as a seized pulley, that failed, causing the belt to snap? Also, was it an OEM unit that failed? In other words, was it a Subaru branded belt, or another manufacturer?
Your default warranties are long since gone, but then the maintenance schedule is 105K on these belts, meaning that they should always last longer than that. If it truly was the belt that failed, that is a definite manufacturing issue and should be addressed as such. It's a tough situation; especially since many shops offer a 1-year, 12,000 mile warranty on work performed. Any way you slice it, there's no warranty coverage per se.
I think it is important to establish the cause of the failure at this point.
#4 of 6 Re: 2003 Outback timing belt failed after 1 yr - engine destroyed [xwesx]
Sep 19, 2012 (9:43 am)
They also call for an inspection at 90k miles. If that was done, they may have caught the problem early.
#5 of 6 Re: 2003 Outback timing belt failed after 1 yr - engine destroyed [ateixeira]
Sep 19, 2012 (10:01 am)
True, but that 90K inspection makes the assumption that the original belt is in there. While I agree that an inspection might have caught a faulty belt before it snapped, that would have been shortly after the belt was replaced. I'm not sure it is reasonable to expect an inspection so soon (if we're talking grounds for denying a warranty claim).
#6 of 6 Re: 2003 Outback timing belt failed after 1 yr - engine destroyed [xwesx]
Sep 23, 2012 (9:01 am)
Actually, the 90K inspection, if done, would have been on the old belt. The new belt was installed at 93,707.