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Subaru Crew Problems & Solutions



  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Depends on where they put the heaters, but I would think cloth breathes easier, so it should warm up quicker. I dunno.

    Wish I had seat heaters to find out!

  • nygregnygreg Posts: 1,936
    on the thermal mass of leather vs. cloth. Anyone have a calibrated bunn?

  • nygregnygreg Posts: 1,936
    My experience is the same as Larry's. At 33k, the left gasket went. Subaru could extend the warranty to, say, 100k for head gaskets. Toyota did the same concerning sludge (increased to 8 years, unlimited mileage!) even though the % of sludged engines is very small.

  • Same here. The wife's 02 Forester bun warmers heat faster than my 00 Outback.
  • leo2633leo2633 Posts: 589
    We have cloth seats in both vehicles (base Outback and Forester S) so we're not comparing the leather to cloth seating surfaces. Thanks for all the input. I guess it's the design of the seat and/or heater in the Forester that lets it warm up faster. FWIW, a friend has a Mercedes E320 wagon, and the heated seats (leather, of course) in that vehicle don't get as warm as the Forester, either.

  • When my gasket/head replacement event happened at 21k miles, there was no smell and the temp gage was never in the red. I had been driving on an interstate for 2 hours at 75mph in cold weather - temp looked normal until we slowed down to exit. My experience with the SOA dealer service people has not been good and I feel pretty bitter about the whole thing. Even if 1% of cars have this happen it's still a large number of victims.
  • I'm a Michelin fanatic and put these on my Subaru Legacy Wagon this winter. I drove them on glare ice for a half mile at freeway speeds before noticing the other lane (a quarter mile away out West here) had a flare every few hundred yards and getting suspicious. It was dark and the rain suddenly began freezing. At any rate, they were incredible in terms of stability - I didn't even know the ice was under me. It was so slick, I could barely generate any braking force without the ABS detecting slippage so I simply coasted from 75 down to a safer 30.

    Another glare ice event a few days later showed the same results, though I also added excellent slide recovery to my assessment by playing a bit in the streets.

    Packed snow, they're amazing - idiot proof.

    Other than the ice/packed snow performance though, they've been kind of disappointing. On a few inches of snow, or slush they do not track well - constantly threatening to ease you off the road. They also broke loose easily on wet on ramps. Oh, also the braking performance on ice was not as strong as the cornering and acceleration ability.

    They're quiet and ride far better than the winter tires I've typically used (steel studs, aggressive tread), but lack directional stability - a trait I attribute to the soft compound and heavy siping.

    We have the 4X4 Alpin version on the LandCruiser, which has been excellent in all conditions. The tread pattern is more like the Alpin Pilot, which I'd have gotten were it available in a 15".

    Would I buy them again? Definitely not. They're not a well rounded winter tire - too specifically for ice and packed stuff for my taste.

  • leo2633leo2633 Posts: 589

    Interesting review of the Michelin's. I have a set of Blizzak's mounted on steel wheels for my Forester and the wife's Outback (both 5 speeds). Although we've had several snow "events" this winter season, only the December 5th storm was significant, dropping around 9-10 inches. Anyway, I mounted the Blizzaks on the Forester that day and was quite amazed at how well they did, in deep, loose and packed snow. I started, stopped and turned in every manner I could on the roads I drove on, and never once slipped or got stuck. The ABS hardly ever kicked in either, leading me to believe the traction was so good that ABS wasn't triggered. Because our roads were cleared by the next day, I removed the Blizzak's and put the Geos back on.

    I didn't have the opportunity to try the Blizzak's on ice, so that review will have to wait for another day. However, I can honestly say that the Forester with the Blizzak's did better in every situation in that particular storm than my '87 Montero (also a 5 speed) used to do with it's Goodyear Wrangler AT's. I realize that the Montero's higher ground clearance and part time 4WD with low range would do better in really deep snow, but the Forester did great in the conditions I've encountered so far.

  • hondafriekhondafriek Ottawa CanadaPosts: 2,924
    I live in Ottawa Canada where snow is a given for at least 5 months of every year, this year I put BF Goodrich winter slaloms on my GT wagon, in the twenty nine winters that I have lived here these are by far the best winter tires I have ever had on any car.

    They grip like hell in any condition,and try as I might I have only been able to get the ABS to kick in once, on dry pavement they are much quieter than the eagle RSAs that I run in the summer.

     I would have no hesitation recommending the winter Slaloms.

     Cheers Pat.
  • toboggantoboggan Posts: 283
    Normally Minnesota (Twin Cities) has a snowy winter starting in November. The Blizzaks WS-50s (mounted on take-off OB rims) then stay in place until early April. These tires have performed in 16" snows plus plowing through the pile at the end of the driveway. Ice has not been a problem either. But this dry year has caused the sticky part of the tread to wear more rapidly.

    Plus the wife's '95 Jeep Cherokee (Selec-Trac transfer case) has a set. That goes in full time 4-wheel in November 'til April (normally).

    Steve in Minnesota
  • kenskens Posts: 5,869
    Got SP5000s for my Forester yesterday afternoon. I got them installed at America's Tire/Discount Tire for around $450 (including mount, balance, disposal and taxes).

    I'll post my impressions after I have a chance to break them in.

  • lakepoplakepop Posts: 221
    Well finally did it. As I've posted before, I'm well pleased with mine especially in the very harsh winter conditions we have this year....that was the big unknown for me.

       Keep us posted.....takes a hundred + miles to break them in. Mine were skittish until then.
  • lark6lark6 Posts: 2,565
    Ken, welcome to the SP5000 club. I'll be interested to hear your impressions of them over time as well.

    I hit 50K miles in the Forester this afternoon...middle age. Hope it will do triple that. Seems like only yesterday that I bought it, but it's been a little over 3 years...which is how long I've been lurking, then posting , here.

  • fibber2fibber2 Mid Hudson Valley, NYPosts: 3,732
    To quote CR's tire test in 11/02, they called the Dunlop Winter Sport M2 "An excellent all-around choice, with responsive handling". They placed 2nd of 6 in the "H" category, and were basically #2 in a mixed field of 17 "H" and "Q".

    I put them on both the OB and the minivan, and am quite impressed with them.

  • My 99 forester is going into the dealer today to have a coolant leak repaired on the left bank (drivers side) of the 2.5L engine. It's a very small leak coming from the head gasket. It has 55,000 miles on it and had been at the dealers last fall for a crankshaft oil seal leak repair. Suburu made good for the oil seal repair and should take care of this new problem, but I think this is going to be my first and last Suburu.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Welcome to the SP5000 club!

    I'm lovin them on the SVX :)

  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    I think the 17" rims have a lot to do with the better handling of the michilens :)

  • lark6lark6 Posts: 2,565
    I'll give you that, paisan. The lower profile and larger contact patch make a difference. The Michelins have a tremendously stiff sidewall. The downside, again, is increased steering effort and road noise. That's often true with any plus-one combination so the tradeoffs are to be expected.

    Again, comparing SP5000s to Yokohama Geolandars I've found the Dunlops to have better wet and dry grip and a bit stiffer sidewall. They are not so stiff that they harm the ride quality, though.

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    If they took care of you, why? It's not happening to everyone, so it seems unlikely it would happen again. Plus they took care of it. If they hadn't, I'd understand.

    But do you dislike having to go to the dealer that much? Check out the new models on the showroom and have a free cup of coffee. Personally, I like visiting the dealer, and I've gone even when I didn't need anything. Your relationship with your dealer doesn't have to be adversarial, is all.

  • It's not that I dislike the dealer or the forester. It's just very inconvenient, because the repair takes a few days and I'm without a vehicle so I have to rent one, because the dealer won't give out a loaner. I bought the forester because they are supposed to be very reliable. Even Consumer Reports gives them a good rating, but what good are they when they're always in for repairs.
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