Engine has 130K miles. Timing belt replaced in January, head gasket replaced in June. Yesterday apparently blew a rod and the engine is toast. Was told "sometimes this happens after having the head gasket replaced because of the compression difference". Doesn't make sense to me! These engines should last 250K+. Should I invest the $4K they are quoting me for a new engine or just scrap the car and start over?
Should I get a new engine or scrap the car? on 2006 Subaru Outback
Timing Belt replacement is common on these and we always recommend replacing all the timing components. ESPECIALLY the sprocketed idler pulley which is prone to failure. Head Gasket replacement also comes as a standard item on the Subarus. They leak coolant and oil. However, a rod or other engine failure is NOT a typical cause of head gasket replacement. You always have the option of taking your car to another shop for a second opinion on the root cause of the failure. I would especially recommend this if the shop stating 'compression difference' is the same one that just replaced your head gaskets. Good Luck.
Just to add my 2 cents , I would also recommend getting references to a different shop. Don't rush to a decision until you get at least three or four (yeah I'm wingin' the number , but I figure it's low enough to be practical in most demographics) people that have something good to say about the same shop. MY OPINION ONLY............If they are blaming the failure on the difference in compression , then they didn't do the job right. If anything , it should have lower compression ,relative to before the job ,if they took the time to clean all the carbon build-up off the head and pistons (if the head(s) weren't sent to the machine shop & cleaned) MY OPINION ONLY!!!I could be wrong , but to this day I have never had an internal engine failure on any engine I've done headgaskets on. I believe it may be due to the fact that I get a little more obsessive about clean-up & assembly prep than the other guys I work with. They goof with me because I'm a lot slower than them , but I get them when I don't have to do it a second or third time!
this vehicle has a high blue book value, you are okay with replacing the engine...however, i would find another shop to do it.