This bulletin applies to all Subaru models equipped with 1.8, 2.0, 2.2 and 2.5L EJ engines with regard to automatic timing belt tensioners. These tensioners must be compressed very slowly, and with the rod in a vertical position. Compressing them too quickly, with too much applied force, or compressing with the rod in a horizontal position may result in weakening or tensioner damage.
When inspecting a tensioner, a slight amount of residual oil seepage present at the rod seal is normal. A significant amount of oil passing through the seal requires tensioner replacement.
In other words, pay attention to the tensioner’s rod seal for signs of oil seepage.