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Subaru Legacy/Outback Wagons Maintenance & Repair



  • tkanictkanic Posts: 78
    The transmission could cause the problems you describe. I know in other cars a locking torque converter which got 'stuck' locked should cause those symptoms. I'm not totally sure if that holds for this case since the AWD system is a bit of a ???? to me.

    The advice I hear often is document everything, it sounds like you are going to have to appeal this to higher ups in SoA and/or to the courts.

    From what you have posted it sounds like the unlt was failing under warrenty and they should cover it, but IANA (I Am Not A) lawyer.
  • Do a search of oxygen sensors in Subies. There is a technical service bulletin out for sensors that freeze up in cold weather. My 95 Legacy's check engine light was going on all the time and after 2 Oxygen sensor replacements, I just left it alone and my car has been fine. The only impact is reduced mileage in cold weather when the light is on. It's intermittent. When the sensor fails, the default signal instructs the engine to use a rich air/fuel mixture.

    Your hill problem is another issue. I'm stumped on that one. Do you have a manual or automatic?

    The damp weather issue may be your spark plug wires/distributor(?). If they're old and you haven't replaced them or the spark plugs, you're losing electrical current though insulation cracks,etc. and your engine isn't getting adequate spark. I'd replace the wires and plugs (check the gap).
  • K9LeaderK9Leader Posts: 112
    An annoying problem on my 2000 OBW Ltd -- when I pull on the driver's seat belt to put it on, it curls under where it goes through the pillar guide and jams. I have to reach over and pull it down and straighten it out, and then very carefully pull it straight out and high (like across my face) to get it to not curl under.

    Has anyone else experienced this? I'm sure that the belt material has gotten softer/more pliable at that point and now has a tendency to curl under. If I replace the belt will it just do this again over time?

    --K9Leader, Newark DE
  • Hi, I own a 1991 Subaru Legacy GT wagon (157,000km's), and I could do with some help.

    I've only recently bought the car second-hand, so i'm not sure how long its been happening. When i'm cruising at about 100km's and then i floor the acceleration pedal in 5th, the turbo starts to kick in, and then at somewhere between 105-110km/h there is a hesitation in the engine or something, as in the car just stops pulling for a second, then continues. I also had it happen to me a few days ago, when i was accelerating from being stopped, into a 100km zone. While flooring it from first and changing gears at about 4.5k revs, I think it was in 3rd gear at around 3.5-4k revs it did it also, causing much more of a jerk, as there was more torque.
    Does anyone know what may be wrong? :confuse:
    Also, I'm not sure if this would have anything to do with it, but it has a boost controller under the hood, that doesn't look very professional.
  • fibber2fibber2 Mid Hudson Valley, NYPosts: 3,732

    Believe it or not, there is a TSB out about this. I saw this on the alldata site when I was searching for another subject. The fix was to sand some burrs off of the guide, and apply a smooth tape for the belt to slide over.

    Unfortunately, I bet that pulling on the belt constantly has stretched it unevenly, promoting the 'rolling'. So the fix might not be enough without replacing the belt itself.

  • Robert: You might want to check with Subaru, but I'm pretty sure that SOA warrants that your seat belt will function for the life of the car. I just checked the warranty book for my 02 Outback and that's what it says. This may be a Federal safety requirement. Martin
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Sounds like you have the 2.0l turbo model that was never sold here in the US.

    Any how, yours must have been customized by the original owners. He may have cranked up the boost, but I wonder if the fuel system is keeping up, or if the quality of gas (octane) is good enough for the setting on the boost controller.

    Are you using the best gas you can find? Is it an MBC (manual boost controller)? If so have you tried adjusting it?

  • As far as I'm aware, it's 2.2l, but I don't actually have any evidence of it. I'm only using regular 91 octane, mainly because I figured it wasn't that important to be using 96. The boost controller is adjustable and I think it's adjusted quite high right now (about 14 p.s.i). I'll try turning it down a bit.
    Thanks for the help.
  • Ok so I have a 2001 outback wagon limited that I love. I haven't had any real problems with it until recently. There seems to be a leak through the sunroof. every time it rains my map light drips and it soaks all the paneling from the map light to the passenger door. I took it to the dealer last month to have it fixed, they said they cleaned out the drains and re sealed the sunroof. but last week it rained again and low and behold my map light leaked water again. it's now been at the shop and the people can't seem to figure out why it is still leaking...does anyone have have any ideas on what could be causing this leak?
  • My 2001 Outback keeps misfiring after 2 trips to the garage--now getting ready for my 3rd trip. Have 22,000 miles on the car. First they changed the Oxygen Sensor--still misfiring--then they cleaned connectors and cleared codes. May need coil connector if the the problem resumes. Yep after driving about 15 miles shopping--it starts misfiring and chugging but no engine light on at least not yet. But now its Fri--day after Thanksgiving call back Monday. In the meantime I have no car.

    My bigger question is this--being this is my first Subaru and not experienced with repairs on these cars but finding that anytime something goes wrong the service department takes forever to fix the problem. I had a problem when I first bought the car and that was a nightmare to behold and
    Subaru customer service handled that problem--now for the first time since then I am facing a repair problem again and right back to not getting it fixed and going back and forth with the car. I don't get it. Why can't they diagnose the problem and fix it This will be my 3rd trip back to the garage with the same problem and does that mean I am paying for an oxygen sensor I did not need since I still have the problem? Seems like when it comes to repairing this car--no one knows how or what is wrong. I am tuning sour on Subaru and I wanted the Baja pretty bad and my husband just last month said go ahead you want it get it--but now I am afraid to go Subaru again due to the fact I am experincing the dealers service department being such a problem or do I just need to find a good mechanic?
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    To be fair, it's tough for them, too. They only see a symptom, and the codes don't necessarily pin-point the exact problem.

    What I'd do is ask them to try the most likely fix, then test the car for a longer period of time. Let it idle for 15 minutes, see if the light comes back on. If so, fix the next most likely thing and try again.

    Have the mechanic do more testing before returning the car to you, basically. Talk to the service advisor about that, but make sure they keep you informed at each step.

  • Without knowing where you live or who the dealership is, it's pretty hard to answer your question.
  • I don't think I can be of much help -- I have the P0420 and a P0440 at the same time. The 440 is often a gas cap not tight enough or a crack in the fuel filler or gas tank. The 420 seems to say that I need a new cat. Both codes clear and stay away for a while, although the 440 seems to come back every other time I fill up. Anyone have any other ideas???
  • Hi:

    I own a 2004 OBW with 20k miles. For the last 2-3 months, when I am coming to a stop (especially after the car has been stopped for a while and this is the first use of the brake after that), I hear a "click" noise from the rear. It sounds like metal sitting down on metal or perhaps like a pair of spectacles being dropped on a glass surface.
    During the first few occurrences of this phenomenon I suspected that I might have run over something but then realized it was indeed emanating from my car!
    The dealer suspects that it is a "brake ware warning" system and is willing to look at it. I will know more this week.
  • What does where I live or dealership have to do with anything? I am confused with that repy--please explain.
  • jfljfl Posts: 1,346
    What does where I live or dealership have to do with anything? I am confused with that repy--please explain.

    By knowing the region or dealer, someone might be able to recommend a better nearby dealer or mechanic.

  • What does where I live or dealership have to do with anything? I am confused with that repy--please explain.

    In MA or NH, where Subarus are popular and there are at least three dealers in any particular 30 mile radius, such service wouldn't be tolerated by anyone. There are literally hundreds of repair garages that work on them as well.

    I was wondering if you lived in an area where that single dealer was your only choice. And also hoping if the dealer is that bad perhaps you could help other prospctive owners by saying who it is.

    So to answer your question directly: no, your experience is not typical. I've had three Subarus drive around 250,000 miles so far and never had treatment like that. I bought the first two from Wakefield, MA Subaru and the latest one from Manchester, NH Subaru.
  • I have a Legacy L with the dual sunroofs. Both of them have a small gutter around the inside trim that should catch any water that makes it in around the seal. You can test this gutter by opening your sunroof, and slowly puring water into the gutter. The gutter has a small drainage tube that takes the water to the underside of the car. I'm not sure (anyone else?) where the tubes drain, but, you should see it come out. If you don't or it don't drain, the tube has stopped up, which could be possible if it has leaked for a long time and has grim/mold buildup in the tube. If it don't drain, that is the problem. I would suspect that you could find the drain tube, at either end, and blow compressed air in it to clear it. Good luck....

  • I have a 2003 Legacy Wagon with 29k trouble free miles. A month or so ago, the drivers door speaker stopped working. I've been dealing with it, not wanting to go to the dealer.

    Last night, after a full day of slow and steady rain, I opened the rear hatch and water poured out of the tail-light access panels and up all the trim and into the car. Arrgg.. :(

    I don't see a cracked lens, all the seals look OK around the lens, but, I do see water in all the lens. Anyone ever have a similar problem?

    My dealer won't look at anything water related, he pawns the work off to "The Water Doctor". So, I'll have to wait 2 weeks until that guy is there.....or, find another dealer.... :sick:
  • lfdallfdal Posts: 679
    Most dealers know they're incapable of handling seal leaking issues. There are lots of jobbers out there that travel from dealership to dealership (some are even on retainer) to deal exclusivley with seal and leakage problems. If you can stand the wait, it might be better to let a leak expert look at it.

    My Mercury dealer always jobbed out leak issues and they were always' fixed the first time. One car had a door seal, another a trunk seal.

    Just my 0.02

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