Edmunds Answers



  • karjunkie 05/14/10 12:23 pm PST

    DO NOT trust what the dealer tells you you need or the cost of it! Go to the Edmunds.com webpage and click on “tips and advice” button. Then click on the car maintenance button. Here is the specific site:


    Enter your year make and model and the mileage and your zip code. Depending on your mileage, you may just need to do a simple oil and filter change, change the spark plugs or a radiator or transmission fluid change that are easy and you can do yourself. That will be MUCH cheaper than taking it to the dealer. If it entails things that are too challenging for you, I would go to Car Talk’s Mechanics Files site at:


    Enter your zip code and you will get a list of mechanics in your area that other consumers have used and highly recommend. Look for ones that specialize either in the make of your car or the type of repair you need. Call 2-3 of them and ask for a ballpark figure on the repair. I have personally used this site with great success to find good honest mechanics and can highly recommend it. Good luck!

  • texases 05/14/10 1:07 pm PST

    In addition to what KJ says (I've also had good luck with the cartalk mechanic finder): Yes, you are required to maintain the car according to the owner's manual to keep the warranty in force. This is true of all cars. If you have it done by someone other than a dealer, have a fully-detailed receipt to prove it. That's what I did.

  • morin2 05/14/10 2:22 pm PST

    I have an 09 Outback with 25K miles on it. Subaru calls for replacing the spark plugs at 30K miles - which is earlier than any other major manufacturer. I don't plan to do it at 30K. I had the plugs replaced at the dealer on my wife's 07 Forester at 35K + the brake flush (everything else I did myself). I told the Subaru service advisor that I wanted to see the old plugs to assess the next change interval. He showed me 4 like new plugs and before I could say anything, said he wouldn't change them before 50K if it was his car. No pressure about keeping the warranty intact. Having seen the plugs at 35K, I don't plan to replace those on my Outback so soon. I'll go 50K. Changing the plugs at 30K seems even sillier than changing oil at 3K - IMO! If someone else can provide a mechanical reason why they should be changed at 30K, then I'm open-minded.


Top Subaru Outback Experts View More

Rank Leader Points
1. MrShift@Edmunds 655
2. Stever@Edmunds 430
3. karjunkie 410
4. morin2 185
5. zaken1 140
6. canddmeyer 130
7. texases 105