Engine Oil Level and Dipstick Markings

Author: Anonymous

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The engine dip stick markings can be rather confusing particularly as in some cases there is no lettering indicating full and empty and there is a notch as well as two holes as level marks. The hole nearest the end of the stick indicates LOW LEVEL and the hole further up FULL.

The Subaru workshop manuals include the following information. Quote:

  1. Before checking the oil level make sure the engine is cold.
  2. Do not check the oil level immediately after the engine is stopped; wait at least 10 minutes.
  3. Immediately after driving or when the engine is warm, the oil level may be in the range between the ' F ' and the ' NOTCH ' mark as a result of thermal expansion of the oil.
  4. To prevent overfilling the engine with oil, do not add oil above the full mark when the engine is cold.

Engine oil capacity as per manual :

Upper level, 6 litres. 6.3 U.S. qts. - 5.3 Imp. qts.
Lower level, 5 litres. 5.3 U.S. qts. - 4.4 Imp. qts.

One other problem that occurs as the car becomes older is the oil dipstick will creep out, When this happens, one should do two things:

  1. Check the PCV valve to make sure it is not clogged. (see How-To Locker)
  2. Replace the O ring on the dipstick. It becomes flat, hard, and does not make a tight seal anymore. Cut the old one off and replace with part number 806908080 ($1.10) or size of 8.8 X 1.9.

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