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2003 Subaru Outback repairs by problem area

Engine (40%)

Transmission and Drivetrain (12%)

Brakes and Traction Control (7%)

Suspension and Steering (17%)

Electrical and Air Conditioning (18%)

Paint, Rust, Leaks, Rattles, and Trim (2%)

Other (3%)

Chart based on 179 repairs.

2003 Subaru Outback repair cost distribution

$2500+ (3%)

$1000 - $2499 (16%)

$500 - $999 (13%)

$100 - $499 (46%)

< $100 (23%)

Chart based on 119 repair trips. The repair cost chart excludes repairs made under warranty, do-it-yourself repairs, and repair trips that include maintenance.
Non-members can see only ten 2003 Subaru Outback repair histories. Log in or join us to see them all.

2003 Subaru Outback 4dr Wagon

212-horsepower 3.0L H6 4-speed automatic AWD

Subaru Outback in British Columbia, Canada
Jan 2009 - Oct 2011
Sep 2009

54560 mi
AC leak, requires new discharge hose 
Dec 2009

56420 mi

C $250
Completed AC leak repair, dealer paid half. 
Aug 2010

59800 mi

C $100
rear sway bar replaced 
Subaru Outback in Nova Scotia, Canada
Jan 2009 - Jan 2011
Jun 2009

71920 mi

C $30
Clunk in front of car, found front swaybar bushings wore out. 
Apr 2010

82460 mi

C $40
Right front cv boot started to leak grease, found boots starting to crack, installed new cv boot kits on right front axle. 
Subaru Outback in New Hampshire, United States
Aug 2010 - Nov 2010
Sep 2010

174000 mi

US $100
Pipe detached from catalytic converter. Mating surfaces cleaned/ground and pipe reattached. 
Nov 2010

177000 mi

US $270
Intermittent shaking when driving at a constant highway speed for awhile. (such as when using cruise control) Shaking continued after last trip to shop. Noticed axle boot was torn. Took car back to shop, and they replaced right axle. 
Subaru Outback in Vermont, United States
Jan 2009 - Sep 2015
Mar 2009

138000 mi

US $100
Front pads made grinding noise, found to be down to backing plate. Pads replaced, rotors turned and re-used. Also changed engine oil and filter while car was on the lift 
Sep 2009

150000 mi

US $600
failed state inspection. Needed cracked windshield replaced and both lower ball joints.  c/v joint boot replaced 
Aug 2010

158000 mi

US $50
Lower ball joint failed state inspection 
Dec 2010

162000 mi

US $250
Coolant pipe from thermostat housing to oil filter, and coolant pipe to heater core rusted through, leaking coolent. Pipes needed to be replaced, dealer items. Up stream oxygen sensor faulty, replaced 
Mar 2011

170000 mi

US $400
Left rear wheel bearing and right tie rod worn out, replaced. Both rear sway bar links broken, replaced. Front rotors and pads worn out, replaced. 
May 2011

174000 mi

US $200
Both front wheel bearings replaced. Loose/noisy. 
Sep 2012

197000 mi

US $100
Car overheated, thermostat stuck. Thermostat, radiator cap and coolest replaced 
Mar 2013

204000 mi

US $560
Rear brake lines rusted through, requiring replacement Rear calipers frozen, rotors rusty, parking brake shoes worn out. New pads, parking brake shoes and rotors CEL code 420. Down stream O2 sensor faulty, replaced 
Jun 2013

205000 mi

US $2100
Head gasket leaking, coolant pushed out of radiator, car overheating, both heads milled .007". New water pump, hoses, pipes seals and gaskets 
Aug 2013

206000 mi

US $123
Coil for cylinder 6 needed replacement 
Mar 2014

217000 mi

US $300
Front pads and rotors replaced Muffler rusted through, replaced 
Nov 2014

224000 mi

US $250
Rear wiper motor Fuel filler pipe rusted through 

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2003 Subaru Outback 4dr Wagon

165-horsepower 2.5L H4 5-speed manual AWD

Subaru Outback in Colorado, United States
Jul 2009 - Sep 2009
Sep 2009

69000 mi
Sold car. A pre-purchase inspection by SuperRupair in Boulder, CO found the right front ball joint needed replacement. 
Subaru Outback in Michigan, United States
Feb 2010 - Oct 2010
Mar 2010

79000 mi

US $90
Head gasket beginning to leak oil. Intend to contact SOA to see if they will reimburse all/part of repair. 
Aug 2010

85000 mi

US $555
Rear stabilizer bar check engine light - emission valve Gas tank exhaust valve faulty, allowed back pressure to build up during fueling 
Oct 2010

86000 mi
Emission valve, gas tank exhaust valve needed when sold to Subaru mechanic. Head gasket starting to leak when sold. 

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2003 Subaru Outback 4dr Wagon

165-horsepower 2.5L H4 4-speed automatic AWD

Subaru Outback in Wisconsin, United States
Sep 2009 - Sep 2015
May 2009

130000 mi

US $300
AC repair 
Apr 2010

144000 mi

US $150
Leak in Condenser, Freon gone, AC non-operational. Not yet replaced, parts on order. 
Aug 2010

146000 mi

US $1700
Head Gasket leaking oil and coolant. Head Gasket needs to be replaced. 
Nov 2010

152000 mi

US $200
Front CV boot leaking throwing grease up under the car causing burning grease smell. CV Boot replaced and car underbody cleaned. 
Jan 2013

186300 mi
Left front outer CV boot is also damaged, recommended to replace entire front axle due to play in wheels. 
Jan 2014

190000 mi
Windshield wiper fluid hoses have deteriorated and cracked, disconnecting from the hood spraying fluid inside engine. Jury Rigged. 
Mar 2014

190000 mi
Rear drivers side sway bar end link replaced. 
Subaru Outback in Washington, United States
May 2009 - Jun 2014
Jun 2009

143000 mi

US $2500
Replaced steering box front brakes 
Dec 2009

146000 mi

US $1600
External head gasket leak. Head gasket replaced. 
Jun 2010

149000 mi

US $202
Air conditioning not working. Checked for leaks, found none. Recharged system. 
Subaru Outback in Missouri, United States
Feb 2009 - Mar 2009
Mar 2009

88000 mi
Car sold with A/C not working, brakes behaving badly. 
Subaru Outback in Massachusetts, United States
Mar 2009 - Aug 2011
Apr 2009

105000 mi

US $600
replaced alternator in aug. 08..battery stopped charging 3 weeks later told by mechanic to replace battery..problem occured again in in late march...battery would not hold a charge...replaced the battery again...1 week later faulty alternator replaced 

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2003 Subaru Outback Repair Histories

See our lemon odds and nada odds page to see vehicles with no repairs or vehicles with more than three repairs. To see how frequently 2003 Subaru Outback problems occur, check out our car reliability stats.