Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Subaru Legacy/Outback Wagons Maintenance & Repair



  • richz3richz3 Posts: 3
    will give it a try, anyone notice any better transmission shift learning using the "sport" position?
  • fibber2fibber2 Mid Hudson Valley, NYPosts: 3,729
    Interesting! I went back and re-read some of what I have downloaded on the subject, so here is an update.

    The codes and a snapshot of the conditions that accompanied the code stay in memory for 40 cycles for most things, 80 for severe misfires. Some codes that stay will interfer with the readiness status reset, but most will allow it if the condition does not repeat (that part I got wrong the other day).

    So under most conditions, it is possible to get the ready status needed to pass inspection once the light goes out. And you can always turn off the light and clear the codes if you have a scan tool. But still, you must have been darn lucky to have set all of the flags in short order! Although I cannot find the specific Subaru procedure, I am posting the GM one, which is pretty typical. Credit goes to the AutoTap site for listing it.

    To perform an OBDII Driving cycle do the following:

    Cold Start. In order to be classified as a cold start the engine coolant temperature must be below 50°C (122°F) and within 6°C (11°F) of the ambient air temperature at startup. Do not leave the key on prior to the cold start or the heated oxygen sensor diagnostic may not run.

    Idle. The engine must be run for two and a half minutes with the air conditioner on and rear defroster on. The more electrical load you can apply the better. This will test the O2 heater, Passive Air, Purge "No Flow", Misfire and if closed loop is achieved, Fuel Trim.

    Accelerate. Turn off the air conditioner and all the other loads and apply half throttle until 88km/hr (55mph) is reached. During this time the Misfire, Fuel Trim, and Purge Flow diagnostics will be performed.

    Hold Steady Speed. Hold a steady speed of 88km/hr (55mph) for 3 minutes. During this time the O2 response, air Intrusive, EGR, Purge, Misfire, and Fuel Trim diagnostics will be performed.

    Decelerate. Let off the accelerator pedal. Do not shift, touch the brake or clutch. It is important to let the vehicle coast along gradually slowing down to 32km/hr (20 mph). During this time the EGR, Purge and Fuel Trim diagnostics will be performed.

    Accelerate. Accelerate at 3/4 throttle until 88-96 km/hr (55-60mph). This will perform the same diagnostics as in step 3.

    Hold Steady Speed. Hold a steady speed of 88km/hr (55mph) for five minutes. During this time, in addition to the diagnostics performed in step 4, the catalyst monitor diagnostics will be performed. If the catalyst is marginal or the battery has been disconnected, it may take 5 complete driving cycles to determine the state of the catalyst.

    Decelerate. This will perform the same diagnostics as in step 5. Again, don't press the clutch or brakes or shift gears.

    So as you can see, you are a pretty lucky guy to have passed so easily in such short order! I would suggest that you play the lottery on your way home tonight.... it's your turn to win!

  • jfljfl Posts: 1,334
    Ask for a discount on the emissions test as you own a Subaru AWD and they don't have to perform the dyno portion of the test.

  • lreecelreece Posts: 1
    I am having the same problem with my 2000 Outback. What kind of rebuild kit did you use and how much was it?

    Thank you
  • ebony5ebony5 Posts: 142
    Well I am soon to receive an OEM radio to replace the one in my '96 OBW (I got it through ebay-thanks for the earlier feedback). Now all I have to do is install it. How difficult is it to install and where can I get the instructions to do so. As I said I am replacing the radio with what I believe is the same unit. I have made a few calls around the NYC area and I can have it installed for about $45.00-$50.00. I may do that but if is not too complex and the prospect of messing up other wires under the dash does not exist I would not mind saving the money. Any suggestion or instructions are appreciated.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I've done an '02, but not that generation.

    The only hard part on the '02 was one single bolt at the way back of the center console that required an extra long phillips screw driver with a magnetic head. Takes about 2 hours on these later Legacys.

    My '98 Forester was even easier.

  • erics6erics6 Posts: 684
    I think the 96 is similar to my old 93. I had a 6 disc wrx changer. If I remember correctly, you take the ash tray out and the screws behind that. The center faceplate can then be removed. Then, you can remove your original stereo. I can't remember about the plug. To me, $45-50 sounds reasonable for someone else to deal with it.
  • mflakemflake Posts: 1
    I recently bought a 1997 Subaru Outback Limited. The instrument panel where the temperature controls are located are not lit up at all at night. I was wondering if anyone knows if this is a burnt out bulb or blown fuse, or whether it is just not supposed to light up.
  • tygerleotygerleo Posts: 16
    I got this car about ten months ago with 64K miles, it has been running OK for 10K miles. But recently I notices the car shakes a bit, it often occurs when car runs above 50 mph and I start to slow down, the car jerks a bit when I just release the gas pedal. some of my friends said this might be the engine problem, other said it is transmission problem. Anyone has some ideas what is the cause of the problem, please post the message. Thank you.

    One more thing, I often hear the clicking sound just before the car is stopped with brake applied. Are these two problem related? Please HELP!

    The car was done 60K service at the dealer about six months, they did very thing outlined in the manual and change the front brake pads,
  • jernjenjernjen Posts: 1
    Our '95 Wagon has been a fantastic member of the family. Now with almost 213K miles, I think it's just getting broken in. I had a rebuilt transmission installed about 1K miles ago, which was necessary but did not fix one of the problems I thought was an indicator. When I am turning at low speeds I can feel a slippage in the rear end. It feels as though the inside wheel is dragging. A co-worker suggested that I am feeling the clutches release and that perhaps they are not fully disengaging. The fluid has been changed at regular intervals and level is normal. Any suggestions for repairs? Is it just an annoyance or are immediate repairs in order??? :confuse:
  • fibber2fibber2 Mid Hudson Valley, NYPosts: 3,729
    Short life bulbs in the temperature control stack seems to be a common complaint on your vintage model. Try doing a search on this, and the Subaru Problems & Solutions board, and you may find the disassembly methods previously posted. I think "IdahoDoug" and others wrote up a procedure?

  • fibber2fibber2 Mid Hudson Valley, NYPosts: 3,729
    It really does sound like the rear differential is not allowing the two wheels to travel at the different speeds required when making a sharp turn. I have no idea if a limited slip diffy was available in '95, but at the minimum, I would start by draining and replacing the fluid. There are two 1/2" square drive screws that need to be removed (lower is drain, upper is refill). The shop that did your tranny can certainly handle this if you do not have the 1/2" drive socket and a long breaker bar to bust them loose.

  • fibber2fibber2 Mid Hudson Valley, NYPosts: 3,729
    Found it - Post #5441! Paul (Hammerhead) posted this, and I am reposting it again....



    This is the text of an email I rec'd from an Edmunds contributor (IdahoDoug) describing how he performed this routine on his 97 OB. Neither he nor I would claim to know how it applies to your specific situations.
    Hope it helps.


    Subject: Re: HVAC bulb

    Actually, the operation is incredibly simple. Pop out the cupholders and
    remove the two LARGE phillips screws (don't touch those teeny ones) that
    hold the cupholder assy in. Pull out the cupholder. Pull out the ashtray
    all the way (push down on the spring loaded "lid" and it comes all the way
    out) and look in the now vacant hole for two phillips screws fairly close to
    the rear edge (vehicle's rear) of the "roof" of the vacant hole. They're
    impossible to access with a normal screwdriver - I used a bicycle multi tool
    but you can also use a phillips bit and a pair of pliers to complete the
    half turn it takes to loosen them enough to remove by hand.

    Now pull out on the top edge of the trim piece that surrounds the radio
    until it resists further leaning. All you need is for the top edge to come
    out about 3 inches - DON'T try pulling this out all the way, meaning don't
    try pulling up on it to pull it's bottom edge out of the slot. Leave the
    bottom edge pinned between the front edge of the center console and the
    center of the dash. I pulled this trim piece out when putting a stereo in
    my nearly identical '97 last week and it was a pain to put back.

    Now point both center vents all the way down, providing a ledge at their
    bottom edges to grip the trim piece with several fingers and pull back and
    down at a 45 degree angle, wiggling it side to side to help free it. It
    takes a surprising amount of force, but then two plastic clips at the
    vertical centerline of the vents on each edge will pop out of the dash
    opening. They're not fragile at all, but just don't break the trim piece
    that defines the bottom of the vents - spread the load with several fingers.

    Once it's free, there's a wiring harness to the emergency flasher switch to
    disconnect - I think the catch is on the top surface of the white connector.

    Now you've got 4 phillips screws holding the HVAC unit in place. Remove
    them, then lift it like the hood of a car and see two small silver phillips
    screws. Remove these (key here is don't drop these into the dash) and you
    can now wiggle the part they held onto the back of the HVAC unit away about
    a half inch. These screws hold the cable mechanism that moves the water
    valve. Now put the HVAC unit back down (again like a car hood) so it's
    close to its normal position and you'll see you've opened up a half inch gap
    into which you look. At the bottom you'll see a white 'wire tape' that's
    the wiring connector and the thing that limits you from pulling the gap
    wider. On the rearward face of the slot you've opened up, you'll see the
    back of a circuit board and on it are 3 green plastic discs about a quarter
    inch in diameter. These are the light bulbs. Use a small standard blade
    screwdriver to hook a crevice on the edge and rotate the uppermost one
    counter clockwise about 1/16th of a turn. That's all it takes to remove
    them as they're kind of a 'push and turn' install. Once you've pulled this
    easy one, it will help you get the harder two that are down deep in the slot
    you've created. Note that the one by the fan switch is longer - the other
    two are identical. Once they were loosened, I used a pair of needlenose
    pliers to reach down and gently remove them from their holes. Kind of like
    that old game of "Operation".

    This whole thing should take you no more than 20 minutes. Now slap the new
    ones in, remembering the long one goes by the fan switch and button it back
    up. The bulbs again take just the slightest rotation to lock them back in
    place. A penlight helps you see the holes they go in have notches in and
    position them with the needlenose.
  • gmwaltersgmwalters Posts: 20
    I have been driving a Honda Pilot (leased ) and while I like the suv, an AWD wagon is more like what I need. I have looked at the Outbak wagon and like it a lot. But I have been reading many posts about the Piston slap issue. Don't think I would want to get into an issue like that. Has Subaru resolved this issue in its latest models? If not, does anyone have data on what % experience piston slap? Does the piston slap also occur in the 6 cylinder? I read in one post thet the turbo version does not seem to have this issus. Is that correct? Thanks for any advice you can give.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    It's really not that common. In fact I'd say head gaskets are by far more common, and we haven't seen those on 03+ models.

    Put it this way, it's less common than tranny issues for Hondas.

  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,267
    With the shortness of the lifespan of these bulbs, I'd just consider it a "not supposed to light up" item and memorize their locations! :P

    Thankfully, the sun is back and getting brighter everyday, so I'll not have to be annoyed with it for another 6 months. :D

    I just noticed a couple weeks ago that my first instrument cluster light went out - the 0-3 range on the tachometer no longer lights up. Anyone want to place bets now about whether I will lose the rest of them within the next 18 months? :P
  • gmwaltersgmwalters Posts: 20
    Thanks for the reply. I am glad to hear that since my last 3 cars have been hondas and never had a tranny problem. In fact-no problems at all. I'll look more closely at the outback wagon because it is the type of vehicle I need. I owned a subaru GL Sedan in the 80's and only had problems with the exhaust system, which was fixed under warranty even though I had just crossed the 50K mileage when the problem surfaced. Subaru was good about fixing it.
  • hustoncshustoncs Posts: 21

    I have a 2002 Outback LL Bean with 72k miles when I drive it makes a loud rumbling noise that sounds like its coming from the front and gets louder as I accelerate. I did have the tries balanced and rotated and the alignment checked. There are no pulls to the left or right and thanks to Jiffy Lube draining my front differential during an oil change the transmission was replaced on their dime just recently. Any ideals?
  • kenskens Posts: 5,869
    I would suspect the wheel bearings. It's not a difficult thing to replace but you do need to make sure they are put in correctly else they can fail prematurely.

    As for Jiffy Lube, I'd really advise against using them. Not only do they get things wrong (like your diffy fluid) but they also charge extra, for no reason, just because you have AWD.

  • dunsduns Posts: 2
    I've got a 2006 Legacy 2.5i with 6K miles. It has developed a very nasty rattle behind the flip-up storage compartment at the top of the center stack of the dashboard when I go over highway expansion joints or a significant bump, pothole, etc. in the road . It is intermittent, and of course did not happen when the service advisor at my dealer took the car for a ride (twice!!). They are clueless as to what to do about it. Is anyone having a similar experience or can suggest a solution?
Sign In or Register to comment.