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Discussion Starter #1
First of all, I screwed up big time going to Aamaco to have my car checked out. Thankfully the checkup was free and even better, I took it to Subaru for a second opinion when they did the April free checkup. They told me the transmission was fine, the clutch was fine, but my issue was the drive belt. Still is, actually, I haven't fixed it yet. It needs to be done, but they said it'd be safe to drive it for another month or so till I have the funds to get the repairs done. $140 labor included. I also need my 60,000 mile service, $600, front lower control arm bushings replaced, $530, rear sway bar bushing replaced, $275, and new heels since somehow two of mine are bent. There's a wheel place near me I can get that done for like $400 for a nice set of black wheels, which I've wanted for a while anyway. On top of that, I plan on doing the cold air intake and a new exhaust since apparently the baffles or some such are shot and it sounds pretty funny at times. Oh, and a new radio, and new speakers. And HIDs since they're so cheap now (another thing I can do). I'm fairly sure I can do the speakers myself, how hard could that be, but the radio is probably beyond my experience (although it'd be really great if I had just one friend that could show me how).

I was going to do a sub and amp, but decided I don't really care right now. Was gonna do a dvd player radio, but I really don't watch much of anything in my car, so that seems silly. In the future I may do some exterior stuff and maybe the downpipe, and a protune or access port, but right now I just want to take care of what I need to.

I thought I needed a new alternator since my car loses it's charge after about a few days if I don't drive it, but Subaru said it's not the alternator or battery, but the drive belt causing that issue. How does the drive belt control the alternator? That part I don't get. I mean it turns it, right, but how is it turning it less to the point where my reserve is gone?
 

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The car has three belts. Two are visible; they power the alternator, A/C, and steering. One is not visible, it's behind the (black) front cover and is the timing belt.

See is there was a recall for the lower control arms in your area, since then they'd be free. Also, I can't quite picture what could be wrong with them.

Also, you could shop around. Some of the prices you quoted hit like bricks.
 

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Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
The car has three belts. Two are visible; they power the alternator, A/C, and steering. One is not visible, it's behind the (black) front cover and is the timing belt.

See is there was a recall for the lower control arms in your area, since then they'd be free. Also, I can't quite picture what could be wrong with them.

Also, you could shop around. Some of the prices you quoted hit like bricks.
That's a good point, I just looked them up and they really don't cost that much. Maybe around $400 for both front and rear. Then there's labor, though...I do have a mechanic that my friend uses I could take it to. Even if it saves me $100, it's money I could use elsewhere.

What about the 60,000 service? I looked in my service manual and with the amount of stuff they do like replacing all the fluids, all the filters, the plugs, and everything else, it does seem like $600 is perfectly reasonable. The local oil place near me charges like $130 just to do the transmission fluid. Subaru does:

Recommended Inspection fuel systems, lines and connections
Inspect drive belt(s) [except camshaft]
Inspect camshaft drive belt
Replace engine oil
Replace engine oil filter
Perform replace engine coolant and inspect cooling system, hoses and connections
Replace air cleaner element
Inspect transmission/differential (front & rear) lubricants (gear oil)
Inspect automatic transmission fluid
Replace brake fluid
Inspect disc brake pads and discs, front and rear axle boots and axle shaft joint portions
Inspect brake linings and drums
Perform inspect brake lines and check operation of parking and service brake system
Inspect steering and suspension
Recommended Inspection front and rear wheel bearing lubricant
Perform rotate and inspect tires
Replace spark plugs

----I thought my book said they do change the transmission fluid also, I'm going by the list on mysubaru.com and I'll check in my car later, but the transmission fluid would have to get changed as well.
 

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The 60k is comparable to what dealers charge in my area. The bushing prices seemed optimistic; find a skilled independent you can trust (having just spent a weekend swearing under a car I won't say my usual DIY this time).
 
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