hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
88,730 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

1998 Subaru Forester engine problems

engine problem

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1998 Subaru Forester Owner Comments

problem #5

May 152006

Forester 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 65,000 miles


Vehicle leaking oil at front seals and getting onto the exhaust system.

- New Cumberland, PA, USA

problem #4

Jun 092004

Forester 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 133,000 miles
Engine head gaskets failed. Heads were saved, but engine had to have top-half rebuilt.

- Portland, OR, USA

problem #3

Oct 012004

Forester 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,150 miles
(1) noticed periodic overheating on 1998 Forester with 2.5L DOHC engine. (2) head gasket failed temperature spiked and coolant boiled over, large amount of white steam from hood. (3) dealer said problem was head gasket and the engine was repaired for $1800, Subaru of America was notified and denied any problems with this year engine in spite of a large number of similiar head gasket.

- Doylestown, PA, USA

problem #2

Jun 162004

Forester 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 72,000 miles
1. engine failure due to a manufacturer's defect -- the cylinder walls are being bored into to place the engine bolts on the Subaru 2.5L engines. In this case the cylinder wall cracked through the entire section where it was substantially bored into on the number 1 cylinder causing the engine to fail completely. Each of the 4 cylinder walls on my vehicle were bored into to some degree. I have a 1998 Subaru Forester L. with 72,000 miles. There was never an indication of a problem prior to engine failure. At the time of failure a blown head gasket was thought to be the problem. More information and pictures can be found at: webdev.ce.utexas.edu/irwin 2. this consequences of the defect rendered the vehicle useless and worthless. And there was absolutely nothing I could have done to prevent the failure from occurring. I followed the recommended maintanence schedule given to me by Subaru at the time of purchase and have not received any ammendments to that schedule since I purchased the vehicle. We were lucky the engine failure did not happen when my family and I were on the highway or in a remote location. 3. nothing has been done to correct the problem to date. I have a case number (643095) pending with Subaru as of 6/25/04, but was told the vehicle will not be reviewed for another 10 days on 6/28/04. The engine failed on 6/16/04.

- Austin, TX, USA

problem #1

Nov 232003

Forester 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 73,500 miles
Bad head gasket car is overheating, smell of anti-freeze burning from exhaust.

- St. Louis, MO, USA

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