A car-based SUV, such as the Forester, provides many of the advantages of a traditional sport-utility--all-weather versatility, higher seating position, and interior space. In addition, it offers the comfort and road manners of a car.

Reliability

We expect the 2022 Forester will be more reliable than the average new car. This prediction is based on data from 2019, 2020 and 2021 models. Select the used car model year to see reported issues with those similar past models.

Overall Reliability
Most Common Trouble Spots
Common Trouble Spot
Common Trouble Spot
Research Years * Redesign year
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Overall Reliability Verdict
POTENTIAL TROUBLE SPOTS
Engine Major
Engine Minor
Engine Cooling
Transmission Major
Transmission Minor
Drive System
Fuel System
Electric System
Climate System
Suspension
Brakes
Exhaust
Paint/Trim
Body Integrity
Body Hardware
Power Equipment
In-car Electronics
Reliability indicates how models have performed in the past, providing the basis for predicting how the vehicles will hold up in the year ahead. These charts provide the most comprehensive reliability information available to consumers. Based on information received from our latest subscriber survey for over 300,000 vehicles, our reliability history charts give you a rundown on how 2000 through 2021 vehicles are holding up in 17 potential trouble spots, ranging from the engine, transmission, and brakes to power equipment and the electrical system. NA indicates that we did not receive a large enough sample size to provide data for a specific year. An X indicates that the vehicle was not manufactured for a specific year.

Learn more about car Reliability.

Owner Reported Trouble Spots

The Reliability score is based on our latest subscriber survey of 2000 Subaru Forester owners. The owner comments describe problems respondents experienced with this vehicle.

Engine Major

Engine rebuild or replacement, cylinder head, head gasket, turbo or supercharger, timing chain or timing belt.

What Owners Say

Head gasket

"Head gaskets were leaking coolant and oil."

Nicholas H., CA (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"Blown head gasket was repaired."

Anonymous, OH (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"The head gasket had to be smoothed and rebuilt"

Faith E., FL (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"Engine overheated while driving - diagnosed as head gasket failure"

Jan S., AR (2000 Subaru Forester)

"Head Gasket Leak is fairly small causing some coolant and oil leaks. Has not been repaired due to cost and the car is still driven anyway with no operational issues"

Gerald H., CO (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"Head gasket leaks. It has been a Subaru problem in the past and it will need to be replaced...$2000-$3000"

Anonymous, MN (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"Head gasket leak allowed exhaust gases into the cooling system, resulting in erratic engine temperature readings"

James R., CA (2000 Subaru Forester S 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"slow oil leak. traced to the gasket. it was replaced"

Anonymous, MA (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"Head gasket leakage (coolant) was a well-known problem for which Subaru offered a free gasket replacement under conditions we barely didn't meet (time and/or mileage), according to dealerships. Subaru never again"

Steven M., OR (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"oil loss over short time period due to need to replace head gasket. Very expensive maintenance issue"

William O., NY (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"This was a recall item with my 2000 Forester...car was taken in and serviced, only to have head gasket begin to go regardless. I have not had it replaced at this point...using car to get around town during winter months mostly...will not take on lon"

Anonymous, NY (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"Apparently this is a characteristic of early 2000 decade Subarus. The head casket began leaking engine coolant I had head casket replaced"

Anonymous, NJ (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"head gasket failure resulted in coolant leak into cylinders. This caused overheating. Known issue with some model/years on these cars"

Anonymous, NM (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Scheduled timing belt replacement

"THE CAR IS 15 YEARS OLD AND PARTS WEAR OUT"

Anonymous, NY (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Timing belt or chain

"CHANGED TIMING BELT AND HAD THE HEAD GROUND DOWN"

Anonymous, PA (2000 Subaru Forester S 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"With the changing of the timing belt and mounts we also replaced the water pump"

David R., KS (2000 Subaru Forester S 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

Engine Minor

Accessory belts and pulleys, engine computer, engine mounts, engine knock or ping, oil leaks.

What Owners Say

Engine computer

"The "check engine" detector was replaced during the warranty period. More recently, the detector was cracked and required replacement which revealed that the "oxygen mixing" part was malfunctioning and required replacement. The system is functioning"

Robert B., CA (2000 Subaru Forester S 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Engine knock or ping

"Sorry, this car is 2000 miles away and a friend sent it for repair. I have no idea what the diagnosis was"

Daniel R., TX (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"After the head gasket replacement, the pistons on the DS bank have had a increasing piston slap noise that was not present before the gasket replacement. The head gasket was done by a dealer"

David D., MI (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Oil leaks

"Rear seal failed"

David C., WA (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"engine leaks oil, unable to locate location of leak, not repaired"

Anonymous, CA (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"Slow oil leek may be causing odor from engine"

Anonymous, FL (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"Some drips of oil on driveway"

Anonymous, NM (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

Transmission Major

Transmission rebuild or replacement, torque converter, clutch replacement.

What Owners Say

Clutch replacement

"I have had to replace the clutch on this car several times. (I don't remember whether it is 2 or 3 times.) Since I have needed few other repairs, that doesn't bother me that much, although I do wonder whether car manufacturers take manual transmissions seriously in cars other than sports cars"

Anonymous, NY (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"I have had to replace the clutch twice once in 1997 and again in 2013"

Anonymous, CA (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"It was a result of a previous accident. The issue wasn't immediately known"

David R., KS (2000 Subaru Forester S 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"This my2000 car had clutch issues through first 60k miles, then revised clutch parts were issued. New clutch now exhibiting same issue. Shop is researching"

Anonymous, IL (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"lurching, failing to shift smoothly"

Anonymous, MD (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Torque converter

"decreased power, shuddering"

Anonymous, MD (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Transmission rebuild or replacement

"just cost and inconvenience"

Roger H., IN (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

Suspension

Shocks or struts, ball joints, tie rods, wheel bearings, alignment, steering linkage (includes rack and pinion), power steering (pumps and hoses, leaks), wheel balance, springs or torsion bars, bushings, electronic or air suspension.

What Owners Say

Ball joints

"Front ball joints wear out requiring expensive replacement"

Terry W., NJ (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Power steering leaks

"Loss of power steering fluid due to worn rack and pinion"

Reginald C., MD (2000 Subaru Forester S 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"hose leaks required replacement"

Terry W., NJ (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"Drips from car are not too bad. Not worth fixing"

Anonymous, NM (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"Fluid leaks from power steering system resulted in difficult steering and loud pump noise"

Anonymous, NM (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Shocks or struts

"Front struts needed to be replaced. I was told this was common for this vehicle"

Anonymous, UT (2000 Subaru Forester S 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

Paint/Trim

Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling), loose interior and exterior trim or moldings, rust.

What Owners Say

Loose exterior trim or moldings

"Gaskets around doors have loosened and are falling off"

Anonymous, CO (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Paint (fading, chalking, cracking, or peeling)

"paint all over the vehicle I chalking and fading"

Anonymous, NV (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"A small area near the passenger side door window has bubble and the clear coat is separating from the paint"

Anonymous, KY (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Rust

"A fair amount of rust on body"

Michael H., CT (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"Quite a bit of rust in various places.Some of the rust in areas where road salt would rarely get to"

Michael H., CT (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"both back wheel wells"

Anonymous, MI (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

Engine Cooling

Radiator, cooling fan, antifreeze leaks, water pump, thermostat, overheating.

What Owners Say

Antifreeze leaks

"After driving the car, it would smell like maple syrup, and leave spots on the ground."

Nicholas H., CA (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Overheating

"Engine froze, overheated, had to be hauled, expense of engine rebuild more than value of car now"

Joyce J., NM (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"Already described in previous question. The engine suddenly overheated whilst driving to work"

Jan S., AR (2000 Subaru Forester)
Radiator

"had to buy a new one"

Anonymous, NY (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Thermostat

"CAR OVERHEATED AND RADIATOR HAD TO BE REPLACED"

Anonymous, PA (2000 Subaru Forester S 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

Drive System

Driveshaft or axle, CV joint, differential, transfer case, 4WD/AWD components, driveline vibration, traction control, electronic stability control (ESC), electrical failure.

What Owners Say

CV joint

"I did not realize I had any major problems with my car until my son drove it and noticed the problems. Buy the way the car was a 1994 model year not a 2000 model. In the past month I donated the car to Michigan organization"

Gene H., MI (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Driveline vibration

"Shaking in steering wheel when in motion"

Anonymous, NH (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Driveshaft or axle

"Both front axles needed to be replaced"

Anonymous, CO (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Electrical failure

"ignition module failed"

David P., CO (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Transfer case

"Making a lot of noise. Am told will eventually fail. Too expensive to fix."

Michael H., CT (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

Body Integrity

Squeaks, rattles, wind noises, loose or cracked seals and/or weather-stripping, air and water leaks.

What Owners Say

Air or water leaks

"engine leaks water, unable to identify location of leak. not repaired"

Anonymous, CA (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Seals and/or weather-stripping

"some minor leaks in the AWD system"

Anonymous, FL (2000 Subaru Forester S 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Squeaks or rattles

"Tailgate squeaked but I eventually solved the problem by cleaning and lubricating it"

Anonymous, CA (2000 Subaru Forester S 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"Back door rattles no matter how many times we re-close it"

Anonymous, NM (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

Brakes

Antilock system (ABS), parking brake, master cylinder, calipers, rotors, pulsation or vibration, squeaking, brake failure or wear.

What Owners Say

Calipers

"Driver side caliper wasn't fully releasing brake pad causing uneven wear."

Reginald C., MD (2000 Subaru Forester S 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"seizing calipers are a design flaw of this car, this has happened at least 4 times since owning the car, purchased at 45,000, where the seizure has caused problems"

Michael S., IN (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Normal routine brake wear

"Replaced rotors"

Anonymous, WA (2000 Subaru Forester S 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Regular brake failure

"Complete brake failure caused by the corrosion of a brake line"

Michael S., IN (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

Fuel System

Check engine light, sensors (includes O2 or oxygen sensor), emission control devices (includes EGR), engine computer, engine computer, fuel cap, fuel gauge/sender, fuel injection system, fuel pump, fuel leaks, stalling or hesitation.

What Owners Say

Emission control devices (includes EGR)

"Similar issue with emission control...recall item...oxygen sensor was put in...just a bandaid for a much larger problem"

Anonymous, NY (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Fuel gauge/sender

"I still have to get it fixed, the gas gauge does not work most of the time and can't be trusted when it seems to work"

Anonymous, CA (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Sensors (includes O2 or oxygen sensor)

"See also previous comment. Defective knock sensor caused driveability issues, and meant that the "check engine" light was on most of the time"

Richard B., IN (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"My check engine light went on. It was casued by two factors, the oxygen sensor had to be replaced and the gas intake to the gas tank lost integrity and compomised the integrity of the system and had to be replaced"

Anonymous, NJ (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

Exhaust

Muffler, pipes, catalytic converter, exhaust manifold, leaks.

What Owners Say

Catalytic converter

"The check engine light comes on and goes off, Subaru says that it would be a MAJOR repair to fix and that it isn't really a serious issue"

Anonymous, KY (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Exhaust leaks

"disconnected at the converter and leaks close to the muffler"

Anonymous, MI (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Loose/rattling heat shield

"repaired twice"

Anonymous, MI (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Pipes

"rusted out"

Anonymous, ME (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

Electric System

Alternator, starter, hybrid battery and related systems, regular battery, battery cables, engine harness, coil, ignition switch, electronic ignition, distributor or rotor failure, spark plugs and wires failure.

What Owners Say

Keyless entry

"KEYLESS ENTRY FOB WORE OUT COULD NOT REPLACE THROUGH DEALER"

Richard L., NJ (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Wiper motor or washer

"Needs replacement. Over $400"

Anonymous, MN (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"had to replace window blade"

Anonymous, NY (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

Transmission Minor

Gear selector or linkage, leaks, transmission computer, transmission sensor or solenoid, clutch adjustment, rough shifting, slipping transmission.

What Owners Say

Hydraulics (clutch master or slave cylinder)

"I had to take the car in three times to fix the clutch master and slave cylinders. At the final visit, they saw that a line needed to be repaired as well"

Scot F., PA (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Slipping transmission

"Due to a faulty main seal in the transmission, the transmission had to be rebuilt. This bad seal caused the transmission to slip when first putting the car in drive. The faulty seal was known about by Subaru to be in the 2000 and 2001 model year cars."

Thomas P., PA (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

"Slips when going from reverse to drive"

Anonymous, HI (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

Power Equipment

Cruise control, clock, warning lights, body control module, keyless entry, wiper motor or washer, tire pressure monitor, interior or exterior lights, horn, gauges, 12V power plug, remote engine start, alarm or security system

What Owners Say

Alternator

"The alternator had to be replaced"

Faith E., FL (2000 Subaru Forester 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Battery (not hybrid or electric)

"THE CAR DOES NOT GET HIGHWAY USE SO THE BATTERY DOES NOT GET RECHARGED BY LONG DISTANCE DRIVING, ONLY LOCAL SHORT TRIPS OF LESS THAN 5 MILES"

Anonymous, NY (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)
Spark plugs or wires failure

"Oil leaked through/past the oil seals, causing 2 spark plugs to short. Repair included spark plugs, plug wiring harness, oil seals, head gasket, and knock sensor (which was a separate problem)"

Richard B., IN (2000 Subaru Forester L 2.5-L 4 Cyl)

Body Hardware

Power or manual windows, locks and latches, tailgate, hatch or trunk, doors or sliding doors, mirrors, seat controls, safety belts, sunroof, convertible top.

Climate System

Blower (fan) motor, A/C compressor, condenser, evaporator, heater system, automatic climate control, refrigerant leakage, electrical failure.

In-car Electronics

CD or DVD players, radio, speakers, GPS, communication system (e.g., OnStar), display screen freezes or goes blank, phone pairing (e.g. Bluetooth), voice control commands, steering wheel controls, portable music device interface (e.g., iPod/MP3 player), backup or other camera/sensors.

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