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Subaru Legacy/Outback



  • miksmimiksmi Silver Spring, Maryland, USAPosts: 1,246

    We find most car seats a pain to remove and re-install, so we try to leave them in place. My older child is in a booster and he's large enough that we no longer have to fasten the shoulder harness, so it's easy to swap it between cars. The younger one has a car seat in the GT wagon and another in the Civic sedan.

    It's a shame the US market has taken so long to develop a safety standard the most precious of all cargo -- children. (Not so elsewhere -- Graham said Australia already has a standard).



  • miksmimiksmi Silver Spring, Maryland, USAPosts: 1,246

    Mine was a T-30 and I removed the crossbars with it; I think yours is defective. Ask the dealer to replace it.



  • miksmimiksmi Silver Spring, Maryland, USAPosts: 1,246
    Sten, Keith: I agree about handling and value. Our first Subaru was a 91 Legacy L wagon FWD 5MT 2.2l engine. Our second is a 00 Legacy GT wagon AWD 5MT 2.5l engine. I wanted the L (value); my wife the GT (for its seat fabric!!). Oops, I said "our" but that really means "my wife's". I'm glad we got the GT because I prefer it's handling over the L (I learned driving can be enjoyable).

    I'm glad we have the option of all three models, each with distinct handling, options, and appearance.



  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    The new LATCH systems are far easier to install and remove. They're just arriving, though. I agree it's a pain to keep reinstalling the old ones.

    Lots of places will help you install them. Get help if yours doesn't feel anchored nice and tight. I have been to Fitzgerald in Rockville for a safety check.

  • miksmimiksmi Silver Spring, Maryland, USAPosts: 1,246
    Here's the answer to a question I had and some reference links.

    Is there a difference between ISOFIX and LATCH? No. LATCH (Lower Anchors and Tethers for Children) was formerly called ISOFIX.

    SafetyBeltSafe U.S.A. FAQ, glossary
    ParentingPlace Car Safety for Children home page
    ParentsPlace FAQ
    CarPoint sites

    After a tedious search on Edmunds, I found this:

    Child Safety Seat Primer, Scott Memmer, 2001-04-17



  • grahampetersgrahampeters AustraliaPosts: 1,779

    Very pleased to hear everyone is back posting although I wonder how our New York Cop friend, who has not posted for a long time, is coping.

    The Australian laws on child seats are fairly stringent. There are Australian Design Rules applying to vehicles sold in Australia, defining the parameters for things like Anchorage points. ADR's apply for vehicles from about 1970 and are rigidly enforced. No ADR compliance means the car canot be registered.

    In addition there are Australian Standards (well actually they are now Australian and New Zealand mutual standards) for child seats

    The first standard on child seats was issued in 1970 and it is illegal to sell such products which do not comply with the Australian Standard.

    There is also a high degree of compliance with seatbelt wearing and child seat legislation. I see unrestrained children only infrequently here in Australia and the Police are very rigid on enforcement. Mind you, community opinion also has its effect. It is not unusual for other parents to point out the stupidity of parents failing to protect their child in a car.

    The only group where there is poor compliance with seat belt laws is amongst recent immigrants, particularly from third world countries where life is less valued. This is an education things and over time, compliance improves.

    Now, the big problem! Fitting child seats and restraints is not fool proof. My boss had a new child, installed the capsule in his Jeep and then, not being too happy with it, asked me (the next youngest family around) to come and check the installation. The seat slid around wildly on the leather seats and was not properly tethered despite him reading the instructions carefully. He is an intelligent, mechanically able forty year old and he had fitted the seat dangerously. I refitted the seat with him, taking about half an hour to get it fully sorted before it matched our requirements and was stable. If an intelligent, very careful man can get it wrong, how would an average or sub average family get by, particularly when harrassed with screaming kids.

    In addition, the straps on the seats do loosen over time and must be checked regularly. In particular, the tether strap which passes back to the roof restraint can become loose, removing one axis of the triangular bracing which the restraint systems rely upon.

    For our kids, now 8 and 5, we use a harness which forms an H across the kids shoulders and slips over the lap portion of the seat belt. Both the lap and sash portions of the seat belt are fitted snugly across the kids lap and locked with a clip, which provides a stable base, holding the kid's backside into the back of the seat. The Shoulder harness passes over the head and is slipped through the lap belt. The upper harness is then tightened with a pull strap. For the five year old, there is also a booster seat which is actually a high density polysterene foam with a cloth covering.

    Notwithstanding the care, we have had a few problems. One kid took to unlatching the buckle himself for some time, always choosing to do it at an inappropriate moment like when on the freeway. Education is very important. The other one was so persuaded of the necessity of seat belts that her teddy bear had to be strapped in as well.



  • Just one important issue on the LATCH system. The LATCH system does not support center mounted seats, it is for outboard seating positions only (in the Outbacks, I do not have manuals for other cars). A properly installed and tethered seat in the center position offers more protection for a child than anything in an outboard seating position. The LATCH system does not offer any additional strength, it is designed to ease the proper installation of the seats. An extremely high percentage of child seats are not installed correctly, there are many communities in the US that have inspection and training programs for child seats your best option is to have your installation inspected or attend a class in proper installation. Check on to find an inspection near you. There area also a great many support numbers for parents to call for installation advise, but my experience with them was they refer you to the seat or vehicle manufacture to avoid possible liability for misinformation.

    I have a LATCH seat, I find that the lower anchor point belts tend to bind when installing because of the sharp angle to the seat crease. I get a much tighter installation by pressing my knee into the seat and tensioning the regular seat belt. I also keep my son's seat permanently installed and have an additional seat for the other car. By not moving the seats around I know they are always properly installed, and the extra money is a small price to pay for his safety. In around 6 months I will be doing the dual seat in each car, and may then use the LATCH lower points.

    There is also a device that helps to tension the lower belt attachment. Many safety advocate groups do not recommend this device because it does not require official crash testing. But, I thought the construction of this device seemed heavier than the seatbelt and tether straps on many car seats. The tensioner is called Mighty-Tite and can be found in many baby/child stores.

    As for the name I think that LATCH is the US acronym, the system is still called ISOFIX outside the US market.
  • miksmimiksmi Silver Spring, Maryland, USAPosts: 1,246
    Graham, Thanks for the standards links, and for the description of Australian child seats, which sound more substantial than US seats.

    Keith, thanks for the insight into LATCH seats.



  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Our NYPD friend was not in Manhattan. He was either in the Bronx or Queens, IIRC. I hope he's OK.

  • I have been contemplating to spend the extra 7K on an LL bean to get the 6 cylinder. I can get the Outback H4 for 23K.

    I am curious how does the H4 engine perform around town and in mountain driving?
    Did anyone make some modifications to increase the horsepower like air filter, exhaust, chip Etc... I would like to get up to the 180 horses range.

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    7k extra will put you in a VDC, even with options.

    You can get an LL Bean with the H6 for under $27k easily. That's only about half the difference you mention, plus you get tons of features and even free service standard.

    That may be just the ticket.

  • We just traded in our 2000 OB and will be selling the Yakima Doublecross Towers (may sell 48" bars also). Anyone used ebay to buy or sell this type of stuff? Any other suggestions to sell this?

    Thanks for a great forum. I've really enjoyed it.

    Live Happy,

  • I have been contemplating to spend the extra 7K on an LL bean to get the 6 cylinder. I can get the Outback H4 for 23K.

    I am curious how does the H4 engine perform around town and in mountain driving?
    Did anyone make some modifications to increase the horsepower like air filter, exhaust, chip Etc... I would like to get up to the 180 horses range.

  • IMHO: I didn't pay an extra 7K to get the H6, it was about 4K more plus the many options that come with a transition to the LLBean edition. I ruled out the VDC since I don't see a great leap in capability over the LLBean. Also, IMHO Subaru is very eager to grap a lead in the emerging sport wagon segment of the car marketplace by establishing a strong customer base that promotes itself without advertising dollars (as long as the cars perform well of course!) similar to the way Volvo's were in the station wagon market. That tends to translate into incentives to sell and sell more. I am sometimes pessimitic about getting 100 dollars less then invoice (as I got on my LLBean) but all reviews seem to predict a reliable, well-made car that is comparable to the Passat, Audi sport wagons. I know that Car&Driver rated those two makes above Subaru Outback, but I think that Car&Driver has a fundamental flaw in overranking German-made automobiles. Statements like the 'Passat is more sportier' seem more like an excuse to valid a model without the presence of comparable data.
  • Is it just profit to the maker, but are there any advantages/reasons to using fuel injector cleaners in your gas tank? Is there any real data to back up using these additives in some cases like engine sluggishness, etc.,?
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Check out my Pine Barrens album. My Forester is pictured in #16 and #32, but there is an XT6 and even an RS crossing water! Pretty wild.

    Two BRATs showed up and one owner was determined to cross anything in his path, and basically did.

    Check them out. Feel free to copy and share these and I took the photos and own them.

  • cptpltcptplt Posts: 1,075
    most major brand gas companies have injector cleaners already in the gas at the pump so unless you buy gas from Freds local station who gets his gas delivered off an unmarked and probably hijacked tanker you should be fine. anything the dealer tries to sell, you probably don't need or can buy the same thing at an auto store for a tenth of their price. on my older vehicles I will occ put a bottle of some cleaner in the tank but its only a couple of bucks.
  • I have been wanting to buy a set....don't need the cross bars themselves, just the double cross attachments. How much do you want for them? Do they have cores in them?

  • Mmm... I may have to bid against oclvframe.

    I have used ebay quite a bit and have found it both easy to use and an easy place to find buyers for unwanted stuff that is cluttering the house. If I were to sell a yakima rack, I would do it there, unless you care to sell it privately.

    If you want to sell this privately, I would be interested in buying the towers and the bars. Feel free to email me off the list.

    Good luck,
  • Has anyone tried K&N Air Filters on their Subaru's. I've heard a lot of good things about these filters and was thinking of giving them a try but first wanted to get some opinions from other Subaru owners.
  • 99gs99gs Posts: 109
    Has anyone installed a Subaru hitch on an Outback? There are two 1.5" holes that need to be drilled in the under skin of the bumper. The instructions are limited as to where they go. There is supposed to be a nut welded to the frame rail to accept the bolts. Any info would be appreciated. Jack
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Really? Is that an OE hitch?

    I didn't think any drilling was required. Sure you're not talking about a DrawTite or HiddenHitch aftermarket model?

    I put one on my Forester, and it took 7 bolts, no drilling, and even included the harness.

  • Hello, I have a few questions and I hope that someone can answer concerning the Subaru Outback. First of all we live in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and our winters here tend to be quite harsh with sometimes over 200 inches of snow. I now have a 99 Jeep Cherokee Classic. I like the Jeep as far as winter performance but I think that the Jeep's ride is quite rough and the vehicle is very noisy (road noise, wind) The lease will be up in a year and we are considering a Subaru Outback as our next vehicle. My wife and I saw one a few weeks ago and were very impressed with the styling.
    Addressing my previous concerns I would like to know how well the outback performs in the snow and how quiet the Outback is. The reason I am asking is because the nearest Subaru dealer is 100 miles away.
  • mrdetailermrdetailer Posts: 1,118
    I have a 1991 model and it is a dream in the snow. The boxer engine has a lower center of gravity. This is more stable. Snow is where the AWD really shines.

    They handle so well that my son, just like the Edmonds reviewers, and some of my friends overdrive them, and crash into a curb. The AWD won't be an advantage in stopping. With care you will have the best snow vehicle around.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    They are real popular in the snow belt.

    Heck, in parts of Colorado, almost every non-truck is a Subie.

    My Forester is great in the snow. Outbacks add a limited slip rear differential, so they could only be better.

  • I agree with MRDETAILER. I have a 2000 OB and it really excells in the snow. We live in the Chgo area and got clobbered last December with an early winter snowstorm. I can honestly say that the Sube was more sure-footed than the '95 Blazer w/ 4WD that we traded in.
    Heck, we just bought a 2002 Forester last night (picking it up today) because my wife wouldn't even consider another vehicle without AWD. I tried to get her to look at other cars, but she just wasn't interested.
    In terms of quiet, it is almost (not quite) as quiet as a V6 Camry. In other words, I think it is both quiet and has a refined ride, not like a typical SUV.
  • otis123otis123 Posts: 426
    How is the Outback in the snow? My LLBean was excellent in the snow last winter! Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow....
  • 99gs99gs Posts: 109
    I do have a Subaru OE hitch. I looked at your install pics for the Forester, but not much applied to this one. Jack
  • subearusubearu Posts: 3,613
    don't have the hitch - yet. probably will get one this month or next. now I'm very curious about this.

    I too thought it was a simple install (like juice). Anyone out there already have the OE one installed from the port? Maybe we could have someone take a look and see how it connects and all (pictures).

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Congrats, Ron. As you know, I'm a big fan of Foresters. Which model? Color? Tranny? Drop in the Forester topic in SUVs and let us know. :-)

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