This is part 2 of a 5 part multi-part series I recorded replacing the head gaskets on a 2003 Subaru Outback, 2.5L 2458CC H4 FI VIN: EJ253
Disclaimer:
Due to factors beyond the control of South Main Auto Repair, it cannot guarantee against unauthorized modifications of this information, or improper use of this information. South Main Auto Repair assumes no liability for property damage or injury incurred as a result of any of the information contained in this video. South Main Auto Repair recommends safe practices when working with power tools, automotive lifts, lifting tools, jack stands, electrical equipment, blunt instruments, chemicals, lubricants, or any other tools or equipment seen or implied in this video. Due to factors beyond the control of South Main Auto Repair, no information contained in this video shall create any express or implied warranty or guarantee of any particular result. Any injury, damage or loss that may result from improper use of these tools, equipment, or the information contained in this video is the sole responsibility of the user and not South Main Auto Repair.

49 thoughts on “Replace subaru head gasket ej253 – part 2 of 5”
  1. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Antonio Claudio Michael says:

    Such a sweet Series Eric O enjoying this series super packed with fun facts and informative @SouthMainAutoRepairLLC

  2. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Richard Jones says:

    Why do these Subaru head gaskets fail?What is the typical mileage that this occurs?Thanks in anticipation.Great video. btw.

  3. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Andrew Tetley says:

    Great stuff Eric love watching you, I learned something today I’ve never owned a scoobydoo and didn’t know that the cylinder heads were on the sides.

  4. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Aaron Bryant says:

    I’m curious as to how much this costs is it worth the money to put into this vehicle?

  5. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars crxtodd16 says:

    Dang. Had no idea you could remove the heads by tilting the engine upwards like you did. This might help me pull some heads off a junkyard EJ253 without having the pull the entire engine. Nice!

  6. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Monson Towing & Locksmith says:

    I must ask, how do you organize all of the bolts you have pulled out? I get that you keep them with the parts they come off with but all the extras that come out no parts with it.

  7. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Stephanie Luigon says:

    I just time traveled from 2021 to see a young Eric before success made his hair turn gray. Or maybe it was 5 part videos that did that? Maybe stupid outdated comments? On to Pt 2.

  8. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars SF 415 says:

    Should've plug up the 5 holes where oil control valve goes before sending to machine shop

  9. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars SF 415 says:

    I usually leave one motor mount with the nut on but loose so only one side of the motor comes up and there's more room to work.
    Loosen the intake a stick a 2×4 under it. No need to remove intake.

  10. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Markius Fox says:

    Good lord, are those head bolts torque to yield?

  11. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Aleiyah collado says:

    so thats how you take the head bolts off…loosen the mounts and jack the motor!

  12. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Spgonahan says:

    Are there more motor mounts to unbolt besides two 14mm nuts with washers, underneath those round pads under the car, and then also the strut from the top of the bell housing to the firewall? Am I missing something?! Mine won't come loose.

  13. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars D. Alex Kablack says:

    no wonder they charge me $1600

  14. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Bluemorpho says:

    Love your videos, dude. I'm about to do the head gaskets on my EJ22 and I noticed you loosened the bolts in the same pattern as their supposed to be tightened. I thought the rule of thumb is to loosen heads in the reverse torque order. Or does that not even apply here? Thanks!

  15. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Robert Ronquillo says:

    Sounds like a dentist tool

  16. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars JohnBoyWalton Beard says:

    Eric'O, Funny thing is…I have that same Ball-Peen Hammer. My favorite Too!

  17. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars fubar totale says:

    My guy just dropped the motor, rather than work in the confined space.

  18. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Stephen Hughes says:

    Your the man the real thing a people's local garage superhuman !

  19. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars kingcarcas1349 says:

    I always wonder how the heck he organizes the nuts n bolts

  20. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Randy Stoffel says:

    you could show us the valves – great video

  21. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars royalspin says:

    Having air tools makes all the difference in the world for getting it done quickly .

  22. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars pauliebots says:

    Blue devil head sealer?

  23. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Vincent Bozzone says:

    I know it's customary to mill the heads when changing a head gasket, but what about the block? Does the block every need any machine shop work?

  24. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Jeffrey Heinzelman Jr says:

    Eric I'm lost as to why you took the rockers off and the cam out? Is that your machine shops requirement? I've never seen that before?

  25. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars William Lambert says:

    The first Subaru I did was a 2000 ll Bean 6 Cylinder with 225000 miles on it, I chose to pull the motor so I could reseal the motor while I was at it.
    The car was from the east coast and of course there was a lot of corrosion all about the vehicle. Once I got the engine out which really was not to b ad to do I went to pull the timing cover off of the engine and replace the timing chain and reseal the front of the motor. At this point I discovered that it was a good idea to pull the motor to reseal it as the 6 cylinder motors have a 1 peace aluminum timing cover on them with 56 bolts holding it on and every bolt in that cover was corroded away so bad the only way to get then our was with a pair of needle nose vise grips and the Allen heads were just gone. FYI Subaru wants $115.00 for the bolts that hold that timing cover on. Apparently they thought the gold anodized was really gold right? Well I elected to go to Fastenall and had them order me some new bolts which was a lot cheaper.
    All and all though I was glad I pulled the engine as I was able to install a new rear engine seal and front Transmission converter seal while I was in there.
    If you have a weak heart do not take your Subaru to the dealer if you are having head gasket problems as they want right around $4500.00 to do the head gaskets on one. Also you will here a lot of BS about which head gaskets to install and I am here to tell you that is exactly what it is is BS. Have the heads resurfaced and the valves done and use Fel Pro gaskets and you will not have any problems what so ever. Use the Permatex Gray sealant and follow the instructions on how to apply the sealant and you will be fine. The vehicle I did was for my cousins daughter 3 years ago and it is still running strong with no problems and it has had a lot of miles put on it since it was done.
    That's my 2 cents for what it is worth?

  26. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Russell White says:

    Can they not make an air wrench that doesn’t sound like a dentist drill ha ha

  27. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars guitarfan21 says:

    Hi Eric, i'm a big fan. My son just bought a 2010 Forester 2.5l turbo XT Limited and i'm trying to get familiar with this car. My current question is i need to check the valve clearances on his motor and i've gotten to ~4.5 min in this video where you've lifted the motor and pulled the valve covers. I can see lifting the motor and getting more "room" but can I check the valve clearances without lifting the motor or is it realistically in the too hard to do box? I'm very familiar with working bucket cam follower type with the heads off (i was a racing engine machinist years past) and his Forester does have a noisy valve train but my son had the car diagnosed at a Subaru dealer mechanic and he said the valves need adjusting. I'd like to at least check the clearances. Sorry to be so long. Thanks Eric

  28. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Alan Torrance says:

    How do you identify the left and right heads, and their corresponding top valve covers — that you said NEVER to mix? Do they have punchings of some sort?

  29. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars R26Roman says:

    Why this really makes me feel cautious about purchasing when is a winter beater. What is the average cost for the service if you don't mind explaining. Or how much did you charge for this service? I was reading all the comments and I saw that you said it took 11 hours.

  30. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars alan humbert says:

    i see you didn't keep the pattern on the head bolts. Isn't it difficult to stretch the new bolts with the engine still in the car?

  31. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Prevost says:

    I’ve been a Toyota and Honda tech for many years and find it amazing that Subaru had such difficulties sealing an all aluminum engine. If they were dissimilar (aluminum/iron) maybe I could see it.

  32. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars YourAngerFuelsMe says:

    "Let's see how easy this comes off. Ah, real easy. Makes me wonder if someone's been in here before."

    How I gauge women's mileage when I take them home.

  33. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars davin briles says:

    Hey Eric, I worked for Subaru for a couple of years and did a lot of head gaskets. I noticed you were talking about making sure the head bolts are lubed to prevent popping and creaking which is true but it's the coolant and crap in the bolt holes that cause the problem. Make a tap out of one of the old head bolts run that down and blow them out. I also saw that you did the heads in the car. It's so much easier to pull the engine. These engine come out super easy take about 45 minutes. Sure beats being bent over the car for hours. Also company 23 is a good site to find a handful of Subaru tools that will make your life easier.

  34. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Mike Oden says:

    Never seen it done this way Eric very good to know

  35. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Bill Silcott says:

    Hey thanks so much for posting these videos. You're a natural. A lifetime of auto care and repair shows in your content and I would be happy to possess just a fraction of your talent. I hope you're able to find the time to continue creating videos, and that the ads are an indication that you're getting some well deserved compensation.

  36. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Paultro 84 says:

    I'm only on video 2 and already regretting buying a Subaru. It's been about 40-50k since the head gaskets were done last.😨

  37. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars R. B.L. says:

    Not sure if you will see this comment 3 years later Eric, but if you had this job to do today, would you pull out the engine or do it exactly like you show here with the engine lifted but remaining in the engine bay? Just curious if you still feel this is the best way to do it

  38. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Farmer Dave says:

    I always like watching the video of the wrecking yard ripping out the engines with a huge claw prior to crushing the car.

  39. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Rob Rich says:

    Eric how much time are you saving by not taking the engine out. ?

    What do you charge for this job?

    What do you charge to do either the rear main or oil separator plate?

  40. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Bill says:

    "I think the screwdriver is the most abused tool you can have." Agreed to the x^10.

  41. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars jeffrey Kulessa says:

    I think you are one of the best mechanics out there,but when you remove cylinder head bolts,you should always remove them in reverse order to the torque sequence. You stand less chance of warping the head. Sorry for being a nit picker.

  42. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars 2nd Momentum Garage says:

    How likely is it during a head gasket on the EJ20/EJ25 that the block needs resurfaced as well? Do you check for that or only worry about the heads being warped?

  43. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars 85rx7se says:

    I would send the head to the shop with the cams installed. The bearings or the lobes may be worn and the shop can tell. Now would be the time for new ones while it is all apart. Minimal extra cost for a better running engine & peace of mind. Also a new timing belt when you put it all back together, as well as coolant flush, t-stat, pressure cap & hoses.

  44. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars 85rx7se says:

    I did not know that was a V4 laying sideways. Odd design.

  45. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars Art Seaman says:

    last one of these I did the cam gear bolts were 10mm allens.  broke 3 allen sockets getting them off.  I don't share ur love for these motors

  46. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars super20dan says:

    wouldn't it be cheaper to buy a reman long or short block? this is too much work. I thought my 3.5 sorento was abitch to work on.

  47. Avataaar/Circle Created with python_avatars mohinder kaur says:

    pretty easy jib – 5 part series. Easier to put is a whole new engine