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Subaru Legacy/Outback Wagons Maintenance & Repair



  • jbbwvjbbwv Posts: 11
    If the temp warms up Sat. as the weather man says, I am going to see if I can find a clear spot on the driveway (still have 3-6 in. of the white stuff on the ground here (WV)) and try the "jiggle test". I have blown through the lines from the fitting on the hood to the nozzles and they are clear. There is something else wrong with this system.
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,391
    I was looking closer at the "new" location of the washer bottle yesterday and it looks like the pumps must be way down in there. I reached up from the bottom, around where the fog light is mounted, and thought I felt the bottom of the bottle and one of the pumps, so you can probably see it from underneath if you actually slide under there. I was just doing a blind reach and my hand was gloved.

    Good luck.
  • jbbwvjbbwv Posts: 11
    I was going to try the "jiggle test" yesterday, but it was way to windy and cold (18). I did get under the car and look to see if I could get to the pumps. Way to many covers and such to be messing with in the cold. It's now setting in front of the dealers shop so they can check it out in the AM. Maybe they find the REAL problem this time.
  • I recently had my battery die. When i replaced the battery, i connected the clamps on the battery and my parking lights came on w/out key in the ignition. also, dashboard lights flick on/off in time with a clicking sound (sounds like a clock ticking). I have to disconnect the battery in order for the lights to not drain the power after driving somewhere. Any thoughts on a fix? Or should i just go to a mechanic?
  • Is your parking light switch on? It is on top of the steering column below the speedometer assembly. If that was left on, the battery would have discharged.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    My '98 Forester does that.

    Grab your keyless fob, and hit unlock/lock for a few cycles. That should stop it.

  • ludo1ludo1 Posts: 1
    Our 1995 outback has developed a problem where if the tranmission is engaged, either forward or reverse, the car feels as if the brakes are on when turning. It is particularly noticable when backing as we really have to accelerate to move the car.The moment the auto is moved into neutral the car rolls quite easily.The odd thing is that it moves normally when driven straight in either direction.Any ideas would be appreciated
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Doubtful it's a steering problem, however there are several things it could be.

    Does it only happen when the steering wheel is fully turned one way or the other?

    If Yes, then it could be the tires are too big and are rubbing when fully turned.

    It could also be a CV-Joint problem although I doubt that as the trans should overpower that.

    Could be a torque converter problem, but you don't mention any other slippage which would indicate a shifting or transmission problem.

  • To me, it sounds like the differentials are locking when they shouldn't be. If the differential is locked, the wheels can't turn at different speeds like they would need to going around a curve (each wheel follows a different path so the outside wheels need to turn faster than the inside wheels). This makes it feel like there is bumping and grinding going on as the wheels fight to go the same speed.
    You don't notice locked diffs driving in a straight line because all the wheels are traveling at very close to the same speed.
    I'm not positive I'm right or anything, but from your description it sounds like a limited slip differential thats locked when it shouldn't be.
  • I will take a look at that, but that has never happened before. thanks for the thoughts.
  • my car does not have the keyless entry option. so it is a little different to figure out. the lights shut off when the ignition is turned off also. i will check the parking lights as well from the last suggestion.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    It could be that the diffy blew out. This happened on my friend's Frontier.

    The LSD can't lock really as they are viscous coupled LSDs and wouldn't really be any tighter than they are set at. A broken diffy though could be acting like a locked diffy if they blew up the diffy.

  • Looking back through the postings, it looks like a lot of people have had trouble with water in the headliner from the sunroof leaking. Nobody posted any solutions for it, though, aside from taking it to the dealer. My wife needs her car, so leaving it at the dealer's to fix wasn't an option. I decided to tear into it, and found it wasn't that hard to do, taking maybe 60-90 minutes to do both sides. First, with the front door open, pull down the rubber strip by the window, from just below the dashboard in front to below the upper rear corner of the window. Carefully, pull the plastic trim strip away from the windshield post and roof of the car. It's held with metal clips, so you have to pull firmly but carefully. After you have undone the clips, remove the end from behind the dash, then you can unhook the end by the door post. Remove the screws holding both ends of the sun visor, then unplug the electrical connector and set the visor aside. Now, if you carefully pull the corner of the headliner down and look toward the sunroof, you'll see the clear plastic drain tubes and their associated drain nub on the sunroof. The tubes on ours had shrunk lengthwise, probably from being parked outside last summer in the heat, so they had come off the nubs. From this point, you can blow air through the tubes to make sure they are clear. To reattach them, I took a pair of pliers, grabbed the tube, and stretched it toward the sunroof a few times to lengthen it. Then, I worked the pliers back and forth in a twisting motion to work the tube back over the nub. Since the tubes had shrunk, they may work their way back off the nubs, but it isn't that hard to put them back on again. If they get to the point where they won't stay put, I would probably get some rubber tubing the right size to fit over the nubs, and put the other end down into the tube. Somewhere, the other end of the tube has to be attached to something, because you can't pull it up toward the sunroof, you have to stretch it. In any event, you're done, so you can reverse the steps to put everything back together again. A few words of note: This was done on a '97 Legacy wagon, with no side curtain air bag. If yours has one, I can't recommend trying this. Ours does not have the roof-mount center console, either. Also, pulling down the corners of the headliner will leave slight crease marks in it. I don't think my wife even noticed the ones in her car, as they are very slight. Besides, our car has 170,000 miles on it, so a few slight creases are the least of our worries.
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,391
    Yes, it sounds like a bad differential to me, as well. Now, is it front, rear, or center?! In terms of cost and ease of replacement, I would hope for rear.... :cry:
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,391
    Thanks for the post, John. It is always helpful when people share a fix. I know there was a fella, perhaps 2 years back, who fixed the leak on is '01 Forrester, but while he did link to photos of the problem and fix, I am not sure he ever posted anything overly descriptive on the forum itself.
  • OK. I have several issues with my 2000 Legacy GT. The problems started with an intermitant CEL. I checked the codes and P0447 Evap Vent Control Circuit Open and P0420 Cat Below Threshold. I let them be for a short time until I noticed my mileage start to decline and once my engine dieselded after filling up my car with gas (I assume this was because the cat was clogged and was causing the engine to heat up).

    So, I replaced the cat myself and never got around to resolving the Evap issue. Meanwhile, whenever I fill my car up with gas, I have to push the accelerator a bit to get the car to turn over. This only happens when I fill up, and I never overfill.

    Most recently, my car began to randomly lose power; almost as if there was a governor not letting it go above 60. It will lurch and sometimes pop (a misfire), but it quickly goes away.

    I went in and retrieved the latest batch of codes. In addition to the two original codes, i now have:
    P0302 Cylinder 2 Misfire
    P0304 Cylinder 4 Misfire
    P0171 System Too Lean
    P0130 O2 Sensor Circuit malfunction (bank 1, sensor 1)

    I did some research and it sounded like the ERG valve could cause the problems. However, it seems like the 2000 Legacy does not have an ERG valve. Someone also suggested that I try cleaning the Mass Air Flow Sensor.

    I replaced my plugs and wires last spring. So if anyone has any help, I could sure use it. Also, why did the Cat code not clear out if I replaced it?


  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    None of those are cat related codes. The misfires are due to the lean condition which is likely due to a bad or dirtly MAP of MAF. The O2 sensor being bad can contribute to this problem as well.

  • Thanks, i did check the parking light, i forgot about that switch. it was on. however, even turning that off, now when the key is removed from the ignition, the parking lights still blink as well as the dashboard lights, in time with a clicking sound that sounds like it is coming from the the drivers side of the dash, different sounding than the signal lights.

    any thoughts? i have it a shop now. thanks.
  • After reading this thread:

    it prompted me to check up on my most recent oil change. With the person doing the change not first knowing how to get my hood open, to actually cutting my hatch latch to the oil filter, I am wondering if the probability of him doing the same exact thing is fairly high.

    I checked my oil first, and it is dark, and over full. Getting nervous, I checked the front diffy oil, (couldnt locate it initially with our sleet and ice), and see the level between low and full, but my car is on a downward slope. This oil is lighter.

    I had the change a month ago, and have since driven 1013 miles. If the same mistake was taken, would the damage already have reared its head? Is it safe enough to drive to the place? Am I correct in assuming that the only way to add more oil to it is through that small opening where the dipstick lie?

  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Yup, you use a long narrow funnel to get it in there. Gear oil is usually a yellowish color but is much thicker than motor oil. It can't hurt to drain/fill the front diffy fluid and get another oil change just to be on the safe side.

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