best coolant for subaru

Best Coolant for Subaru WRX, Outback, Forester, Legacy & Others

The models of Subaru do indeed offer a great value proposition. But the problem is the stock coolant. It does not last that long, nor does it provide a stellar overall performance in protecting and keeping the engine cool.

In fact, we have noticed our WRX overheating a lot during the extreme loads. Well, that is where we wanted to opt for the best coolant for Subaru. And we did try out an option that seemed pretty promising. But it failed to deliver most of the things it promised.

However, we did not give up just then. Instead, we went for the hunt again. But the next time, we kept all of the crucial factors in mind. And we did manage to find the ones worth purchasing, which we will discuss in this article.

What Kind of Coolant Does a Subaru Take?

Just like any other manufacturer, Subaru has developed its own antifreeze. And their coolant has set a benchmark in terms of specifications. However, that does not mean that the Subaru engines will not run without the OEM coolants. They can certainly operate with aftermarket antifreeze. But there is a catch.

If the aftermarket coolants meet or exceed the OEM specifications, they will be compatible with Subaru vehicles. On the other hand, if a coolant fails to match or pass a single factor from the specifications, it will not be compatible with the Subaru vehicles.

So, in a nutshell, Subaru does need a special coolant. However, that “special” factor can be matched and sometimes exceeded by the aftermarket options. For example, we found out a couple of options that could adequately cool down the engines during extreme loads from our tests.

Furthermore, some of the stock or OEM coolants have a considerably low amount of lifespan. Many of the aftermarket options will last for at least 5 years. Also, some Subaru super coolant equivalent coolants have perfected the formula to that level to adequately fight the harmful deposit and keep the engine clean.

Top 5 Best Antifreeze Coolant for Subaru Reviews

There are plenty of options in terms of coolant for Subaru Outback or any other model in the market. But the good news is that we intensively tested out all of the top-rated ones. And after spending hours comparing the results we have collected from those tests, these are the ones that have stood out the most:

1. Genuine Subaru SOA868V9270

Let us start things off with the Genuine Subaru coolant. And this one offers loads of things that an average coolant for Subaru forester or any other model can not provide. Want to know about them all? Read through the entire review!

It provides stellar cold-weather protection. Even when the temperature goes to around -62 degrees Fahrenheit, the engine will not show any signs of cold starts. Also, it can protect the crucial parts from getting corroded. The organic corrosion inhibitor does a stellar job in that regard.

As the formula integrates organic corrosion inhibitors, there is no need to mix any extra inhibitors into the coolant. And this will make the replacement or refilling process easy and straightforward. The antifreeze is also compatible with non-metal surfaces.

It also comes in the pre-diluted form. That means you can put this one straight into the container. Each of the bottles contains a gallon of the coolant, which should be good enough for regular refills.

Highlighted Features

  • Provides stellar cold-weather protection
  • Eliminates the signs of cold starts
  • Protects the crucial parts of the engine
  • Has organic corrosion inhibitor
  • Comes in a pre-diluted form

2. Zerex Asian Vehicle Blue Silicate

The manufacturer Zerex is well known for its coolant lineup. And when it comes to the best coolant for Subaru, this specific offering is an excellent pick for all the things it has to offer.

Unlike some of the other coolants, this one has specific specifications to exceed the OEM specifications. That means if you compare the Subaru forester coolant type, you will notice better overall specs on this one. Also, it is highly compatible. So, you can even use it as a coolant for Subaru outback.

The formula also has a substantially higher lifespan. It will show optimal cooling capacity for the first 150 thousand miles. And as it is free from silicate and phosphate, the performance will be pretty much constant. The organic acid technology will further improve the coolant performance of the formula.

It even does a proper job of protecting the crucial parts of the engine. The formula can protect the system’s metals from catching rust or corrosion. Also, it will keep the inside clean and clear away harmful deposits and scales.

Highlighted Features

  • Exceeds OEM specifications
  • Highly compatible
  • Long-lasting
  • Has organic acid technology
  • Protects the internals of the engine

3. Prestone Antifreeze Coolant

On the lookout for a proper coolant for Subaru Legacy? Well, you can stop your search right here because Preston is offering something that checks your requirement.

Firstly, this one comes in a pre-mixed form. The 50/50 mix eliminates the hassles of going through the mixing process. You can dump it straight into the coolant reservoir. Also, it is formulated to work not only for legacy but also for the other models.

Besides that, it has a stellar lifespan. The coolant can last for at least 10 years if all of the other factors are not considered. That means you will be getting at least 300 thousand miles out of it. It even has CorGuard technology, which will provide the highest amount of protection to the cooling parts.

The technology also does a proper job of keeping the rust and corrosion away from the inside. It can also efficiently keep the temperature optimal even when the engine is at a higher load.

Highlighted Features

  • Ships in a 50/50 mix
  • Ready to use
  • Has a 10 years lifespan
  • Utilizes CorGuard technology
  • Keeps rust and corrosion away from the inside

4. Recochem OEM 86-184BOEMH

While browsing through the listings, you might want to get the best coolant for Subaru WRX. Well, in that case, you must keep this option that is from Recochem on your consideration.

Like a couple of other coolants on our list, this one comes in a pre-diluted form. So, it will be possible for you to use it directly after taking off the cap. You will not have to mix any distilled water into it. Also, each bottle contains 1 gallon of coolant.

This coolant has a specific formula that helps increase the performance of Subaru WRX. It does that by keeping the operating temperature of the engine in the optimal range. And the blend is also compatible with other models.

The coolant also holds the ability to protect the crucial parts of the engine. It will ensure that the core components do not catch rust, nor do they corrode over time. As a result, you can expect a hefty improvement in terms of the overall lifespan of the engine.

Highlighted Features

  • Ships in a pre-mixed form
  • Each bottle have 1 gallon of coolant
  • Capable of improving the overall engine’s performance
  • Enhances the lifespan of the engine
  • Ensures an optimal operating temperature

5. PEAK OET Extended Life

Even though there are plenty of coolants out there, only a few offer the ability to mix with other coolants. And this one from PEAK is one of those few.

The formula of the coolant can accept and mix with the other antifreeze. You just need to ensure that the specifications of both are the same. That is not all it has to offer; it even boasts the ability to protect and prevent the core components from rust and corrosions.

This formula contains a bittering agent, which will enhance the overall protection even further. And it does not lag one bit when it comes to lifespan. This coolant can last for at least five years when all the other factors are in a good state. That is about 150 thousand miles.

It can properly keep the temperature at the optimal range during its entire lifespan. And the engine will not even show a sign of overheating even during the extreme loads.

Highlighted Features

  • Can be mixed with similar coolants
  • Prevents rust and corrosion
  • Integrates bittering agents
  • Has an up to the mark lifespan
  • Provides loads of protection to the core components

Subaru Coolant Change Interval

Purchasing a good coolant is one thing and replacing the coolant at the right time is another thing. Even if you fill the reservoir up with a high-end coolant, if you do not change or refill the tank at the right time, the engine’s performance will not be constant. You can even damage the core components by doing so.

Nonetheless, the real question is how often you should change the coolant, right? Well, generally, you should flush the coolant after every two years or every 30 thousand miles. That is what many manufacturers are going to recommend. But that is applicable for regular coolants.

Nowadays, the coolants are utilizing advanced technologies, which increases the overall lifespan of the antifreeze. However, it will still be a good idea to check the coolant tank every 6 months. Also, if possible, get the coolant checked by a professional mechanic.

Now, you might be wondering what you can do to enhance the lifespan of the coolant. Well, our recommendation would be to opt for a proper pre-mix coolant. The lifespan can highly depend on how proper the mix is. So, if you do not have any idea regarding mixing, do not get the unmixed or concentrated ones.

Subaru Coolant Type

It is pretty essential to have proper knowledge regarding the type of coolants before making a purchase. That knowledge can increase the chances of you ending up with something right for your specific Subaru. Nonetheless, we can divide the type into two categories. And they are:


When it comes to color, it will depend on the technology that the coolant is utilizing. If the antifreeze has Organic Acid Technology, otherwise known as OAT, it will be orange, yellow, purple, or red.

On the other hand, if the specific coolant utilizes Hybrid Acid Technology, otherwise known as HOAT, it will be orange and yellow. Then, there are the ones that integrate Inorganic Acid technology, otherwise known as IAT. Those are typically green, but they can sometimes be blue in color.

However, the thing is the color does not really play that much role in terms of differentiating the overall performance of the coolant because, as you can see, both HOAT and OAT can be orange in color. The main thing that matters is the specifications.

Mixed or Concentrated

The type that you should primarily be concerned about is whether the coolant is pre-mixed or in concentrated form. Just like the name of the type suggests, the pre-mixed options will ship with a 50/50 mix. The first half will be the concentrated coolant, while the rest will be distilled water.

Now, the pre-mixed options should be your go-to option because they will not make you go through the hassle of measuring and mixing the proper amount of distilled water into the blend. Instead, you can just pop the lid off and pour the antifreeze right into the reservoir.

On the other hand, there are the concentrated ones. These will come in the purest form. And as they come in the purest form, they will usually offer a higher value for the money. However, you can not use them on their own. You would need to mix them with distilled water before using them.

On that note, you would need to consider the specification before considering whether to purchase the type of coolant or not in this case as well.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

1. Does every coolant require mixing?

Answer: Not at all! When it comes to mixing, it will depend on the type of coolant that you have. If it is pre-mixed or states 50/50 anywhere, it will not require any mixing at all. On the other hand, if it states pure or concentrated, you need to mix a 1:1 coolant and distilled water before using it.

2. Can I mix the red coolant with orange coolant?

Answer: That will depend on the specifications of the coolants. If they have the same specification and if either of the manufacturers states that they can accept other similar types of coolant, you can mix them up.

3. Do Subaru manufacturer coolants?

Answer: Yes, just like most of the other car manufacturers, Subaru manufacturers their own coolant. However, some of the genuine coolants are manufactured by other companies but go with Subaru’s name. No, they are not trying to rip you off.

Instead, to get the “Subaru” label, they had to go through the quality tests. And if Subaru approved the results, they held the right to call themselves genuine.

4. What color is Subaru coolant?

Answer: That will depend on what model of Subaru you have. If it is from anywhere between 1999 to 2008, it will be green in color.

5. Should I flush the old coolant?

Answer: It will depend on the interval and type of coolant. If you are using the same coolant and just refilling a little bit of the coolant into the tank after six months or so, there is no need to flush out the entire thing.

Final Words

We certainly know how hard it can be to get the best coolant for Subaru. For that reason, through this article, we aimed to make the choosing process easier for you. And we hope that we were successful at doing so.

That being said, we assure you that each one of the coolants we have gone through will be worthy of each penny because we tested them vigorously. So, you can choose any without worrying too much.

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