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Subaru Crew Problems & Solutions



  • I agree with cptplt - alignment issue and unless you or another driver in your family hit something (and didn't tell since no visible damage) then it would be a factory issue. How many times during the vehicle's 15k did you check the air pressures?

    I can't explain the single tire being inordinately worn, but you'd have to provide a tread depth measurement for any of us to comment. "Worn out" could mean something entirely different to you, so looking for a measurement vs the others. But the dealer's not being forthcoming by mentioning the AWD system as a cause. It has been my experience through hundreds of thousands of miles with AWD vehicles that they are much EASIER on tires than any 2WD - by far.

    If you drive aggressively on tires that have not been kept at or above the factory pressure, then the outside edges will wear much faster than the rest. Can you feel any slack or movement in the RR tire by trying to rock the vehicle using the tire's top to shake firmly?

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Jim: no, your alignment must be off, or at least that tire was off balance.

    More wear on the outside edges could mean you corner aggressively, or that the tires were slightly underinflated, or the alignment, once again.

    But 15k? And the rear tire? Fronts do most of the work (50% power, 100% steering). Just one? Something is awry.

    Get 4 new tires balanced properly, make sure they check the torque specs (75 lb-ft will do), and get a full 4 wheel alignment to go with it. Then do rotate the tires every 7500 miles, that is important too. Check the air pressure every time you fill up the gas, or at least every time the season changes. You lose 1psi for every 10 degree drop in temps.

    Doug: nice call - do have the rear wheel bearings checked. Do you hear any noise from that wheel, any whining or grinding?

    Len: I use any name-brand oil with SAE's "SH" rating, I think that's the latest. It comes from the factory with Havoline, I heard.

  • I'm not sure if this is the right area to post, but
    I'm shopping for used Foresters, and found a
    nice, clean 2000 Forester L, the carfax says it
    was a local lease vehicle, bought locally, never
    sold at auction, so it looks like highway miles,
    I'd guess, but it has 105,500 mi.
    I noticed one problem, the lights that light
    up the automatic gear shifter were out, and then
    after driving it on the highway for a few minutes,
    the lights came back on.

    The price is attractive, the car looks good,
    but I worry about a car with such high miles.
    What is the maintenance like on lease vehicles?

    I can buy it subject to mechanic's approval,
    but I'm wondering if this something worth taking a chance on.

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Whoever leased that must've paid a HUGE fee for the extra miles. Try to negotiate a low purchase price. It should also have a fresh timing belt (at 105k to be exact).

    But I bet it's reliable, if not it couldn't possibly have so many miles in so little time.

  • Somewhere in these Subaru posts I asked for suggestions on how to get Pine Sap off a car. I tried kerosene and so far it works the best. A little on a rag and some thumb nail scratching gets the job done. You can do this for an hour or two then you have to lay off a week or so till the thumb nail grows out some more (just kidding). But you get the picture.
  • blaneblane Posts: 2,017

    Since the 105K mile Forester is a "local" vehicle, see if you can find out the name and phone number of the owner/driver. Your state DMV may be able to help (for a fee). Ask about service history , reliability, etc.

    At that mileage the price should be very low to intice you to buy.
  • A mechanic at a jiffy lube suggested that I use Fuel Injector Cleaner (FIC) for my Forester.
    I don't have any problems with my Forester. However, the mechanic said using FIC will improve engine response. Has anyone here had experiences FIC?
    The last thing I want to do is put in something and invite trouble:)

    Thanks in advance!
  • bat1161bat1161 Posts: 1,784
    I ran into a similar problem, but at 30K miles. I must have hit a pothole or two (imagine that:-))here in NYC. I had the Right Rear tire that was really worn, as well as the right front. This made me have to replace all 4.

    The only thing that has happened since is 3 weeks into the new tires, I picked up a nail in one,so I had to get it plugged. Once agin, those lovely NY streets!

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Most enthusiasts recommend using a bottle of Techron every year or so. You can buy this yourself, put it in an empty tank just before you fill up.

  • If it was a lease vehicle there should be service history for it. People that lease have to show proof to the lease company that they had the required service performed. Also 105,000 is when Subaru says to change the timing belt. Not a cheap service.
  • Here's a strange one. A couple months ago, I flushed and refilled a '96 Legacy Wagon 2.2 with Dex. After I'd finished filling it, installing a new Subaru thermostat and gasket, and burping a bit of air I took it for a drive. 3 miles from home I happened to look at the temp guage and it was approaching the hot peg! I immediately stopped and left the engine at a fast idle with heat on full blast, but it did not come down after a couple minutes so I shut it down and popped the hood for max cooling.

    Called my wife to bring the truck and tow strap and sat there wondering what had happened. After about 5 minutes, I restarted it and the guage quickly returned to normal. Cancelled the rescue and drove home. The next morning I burped a bit of air out of the cooling system vent - not much.

    Fast forward to today. Flushed my '97 in the same manner, installed a new thermostat and gasket, then backed it into the garage for a level surface to burp air with the cooling system vent. A little came out, but I sat with it idling and some revving and watched the needle climb up almost to the peg just like the other car did. Jumped out and reached under to feel the lower hose as it leaves the bottom of the block/thermostat housing and the hose was barely warm where the upper hose was really hot. Hopped in and drove it around the block and the needle immediately dropped to normal. Parked it in the garage and mentally filed this under "Huh?"

    A couple hours later, I went to the garage to check for seeping fittings and the like, and noted that the cooling system had sucked in at least a pint from the overflow tank (I'd cleaned and refilled it, too). So I topped it off again.

    Anyone got a theory on this mystery? Did BOTH new Subaru thermostats simply stick for a while when opened the first time? Or is there a known propensity to get an air bubble around the thermostat so it won't get hot enough to open despite the block coolant getting too hot?

  • blaneblane Posts: 2,017

    Were your two Subaru thermostats the correct part number and temperature range for your vehicles? Or could your dealer have dealt the wrong ones?
  • lakepoplakepop Posts: 221
    Sure sounds like the thermostats did not perform correctly. If it happens again....change them out for the CORRECT ones.
  • dudedude Posts: 123
    Hey everybody. I wrote about a month ago about my sunroof problem on a 98 Legacy GT. Well, still no resolve. Called the Added Security again and they insist that even though I need to buy the whole assembly with the motor, they are not go'na reimburse me for the motor. I got a name of a guy, who is some kind of Subaru Team Leader, Chad Seifert, and I'm sending him a letter about this problem. I hope he's the right person. Juice, if you can tell me who'd be a better person to address this letter, I'd appreciate it.

    Also, I got a Subaru repair manual, where it describes how to replace a sunroof, doesn't look like it's too complicated but I'm hesitant to do it myself. I could buy the whole assembly for $100 on the junk yard so, it ain't too bad. So, I'm wondering what I should do. Any suggestions greatly appreciated.
  • Yep - all 4 were correct, said '78C' stamped right on the housing in all cases.
  • Speaking of thermostats, does anyone know if the AT has a different thermostat than the MT ?
  • Has anyone come across having a noise from the timing belt housing area near the water pump? 66k miles, is this usual happening and when do you change the timing belt on these cars? Also, has anyone replaced their emergency brake handle? Mine just broke. When it rains pours. Thanks
  • jay_24jay_24 Posts: 536
    How can I remove the review mirror and re-mount it up a little higher? Probably(hopefully) something simple, but I have no clue...

    Why? being tall (6'5") the mirror is too low even when pushed up as high as it will go. When I say too low, I mean, it block my view of other cars at intersections and on-ramps. If I could move it up another inch or so it would help me peek under it...

  • miksmimiksmi Silver Spring, MDPosts: 1,246
    Jay, I feel your pain at 5'9" and a long torso. Sorry, I'm not sure how I'd go about such a mod.



  • kenskens Posts: 5,869
    Fuel injector cleaners are fine, just don't do it at places like Jiffy Lube where they overprice the cleaners to fatten their profit margins.

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