Howdy, Stranger!

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

Subaru Crew Problems & Solutions



  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,508
    Possible, but the symptoms you described do not place the location of lubricant loss at the axle. If it was the CV joints, there would be loss coming out from the boot at either the top or bottom and in either case the loss should be pretty noticable on the outside of the rubber boot. However, I'm sure the mechanic will diagnose the source upon visual inspection, so let us know!
  • jcpressjcpress Posts: 15
    I have a '99 Forester with an automatic trasmission. Problem is, when I put the car in Drive, the car vibrates as it would with a rough idle. Only the RPM speed doesn't drop when I put the car in gear. When I put the car in Neutral, the problem goes away. I brought the car in to the shop and the mechanic said they didn't notice the problem - so I'm going to check out a new mechanic. I'm wondering if this might be connected in some way to the fact that my a/c compressor and condensor recently went kaput and need to be replaced - again, according to my mechanic. :confuse:
  • fibber2fibber2 Mid Hudson Valley, NYPosts: 3,732
    Boy, could be a lot of things.... A well balanced, free running engine will be smooth, but put a load on it and any irregularity can cause it to shake. I'd start with motor and tranny mounts to make sure that everything is held tight and well damped.

    Does it change much when you switch on the A/C? While the compressor adds another load, the engine control system should up the idle to compensate. Is the compressor perhaps running all the time (when it should not be...)? Does increasing the throttle very slightly smooth out the idle? What is the idle speed? Ever get a Check Engine light?

    There are numerous engine systems that could be at fault, such as the idle air control valve, slight inbalance in compression cylinder to cylinder, etc.

    And these are just the initial things to check!

  • jcpressjcpress Posts: 15
    Thanks, Steve. No check engine light has come on, and the shaking does smoothe out when I step on the gas. I haven't tried anything with the A/C, but I don't believe the compressor is running at all. Idle speed is around 700 or so usually. I'll just have to bring it in to the shop and have them look at it.
  • bodez1bodez1 Posts: 1
    Yes my 06 forester does the same thing starting at about 45 mph. Only
    it sounds like whining wind. My wife figured thats why some 06 foresters come with
    rear spoilers (I Dont have one).
    My problem is when I backup, the brakes lock up when I try to go forward. This is on flat surface not a hill. I pump the brakes and they release.
    Only 600 miles on the vehicle. Any ideas?
  • samiam_68samiam_68 Posts: 775
    Is yours a 5-speed or automatic?
  • c_hunterc_hunter Posts: 4,487
    That noise you describe is the roof racks. Verify that the crossbars are mounted correctly (rounded fat section forward - sharp edge back, like a wing). Actually, if you do not use the racks often, you can take them off for the least wind noise. No sense dragging them around all the time if you don't use them, and I think the car looks better without them.

  • pertpert Posts: 19
    Took my racks of and car does look better. Also cut down on wind noise. I also remove my rear headrests when not in use for more rear visability and looks.
  • pkppkp Posts: 2
    Looking for some advise on what I think is rather a serious engine problem. I have pushed my 99 Forester to 150km/hr with the RPM close to the red line. After traveling at that speed for about a minute I started hearing a loud engine noise. I stopped the car and the noise was very loud, sounded like one of the pistons was loose in the motor or something broke and was making a horrific noise. The car has less than 180K on it and the maintenance was done according to the book. There is oil and coolant in the engine. One point is that I had a leaking head gasket replaced recently by Subaru dealership. Could the motor be destroyed? Car does not have much power now, but it starts. Overall very disappointed by the car. Any advice?
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    You might have valvetrain damage, maybe even the rings aren't sealing any more. I'd have it flat-bedded to your mechanic, and not even start it again until you find out exactly what it wrong.

  • jcpressjcpress Posts: 15
    Haven't taken the car in just yet, though I will. Just wondering, though, if anyone thinks replacing a condensor and compressor is something a moderately handy person could handle in the driveway? I have, many moons ago, done things like replacing radiators, and I'm not necessarily afraid of picking up the parts from a junkyard and doing it myself. Is anyone aware of any "how-to" guides on doing stuff like this? Thanks all.
  • c_hunterc_hunter Posts: 4,487
    The mechanical work is not too hard, but you probably cannot charge/pressurize the system on your own. I don't know if the equipment/fluid is available to consumers.

  • danielldaniell Posts: 128
    The driveaxle and CV joints were fine. The problem was the seals where the driveaxle was attached (to the transaxle I assume). Dealer wanted to charge me $275 + tax. Manual says that "seals and gaskets" are covered by the 5 year/60k drivetrain warranty. Called SOA, they called the dealer (Subaru Beechmont, Cincinnati). Dealer fixed it under warranty.

  • fibber2fibber2 Mid Hudson Valley, NYPosts: 3,732
    The short answer is no, you could not complete the job yourself. Physically replacing the condensor & compressor is something that you could do, and probably save a considerable amount of money on sourcing the parts and performing the labor. But the recharging is outside the capability of the average person.

    The contents of an AC system must be completely devoid of normal atmosphere, and especially any water vapor - down to a few ppm (parts per million), otherwise severe compressor damage will occur. The procedure usually involves sucking on a fitting with a high vacuum pump until the base pressure is below a set point. This removes air, water, and some of the compressor oil that circulates about. If the system was open for a while, it may also pay to replace the 'receiver-dryer', otherwise it might not be possible to reach the recommended base pressure due to continuous outgassing from accumulated crud.

    It is then backfilled with fresh oil (a few ounces) and the correct amount of R-134a (2-3 lbs). Pressure tests are then run to be sure that no ice blockages form at critical spots, such as the expansion valve at the inlet to the evaporator.

    Clearly, this is not a procedure for the inexperienced, or those without a considerable investment in the right equipment!


    BTW: where in NY?
  • My 2001 subaru outback CEL start on and off after 40K miles. After a while, it stays on, but occasionally off when car re-starts on hot engine. It sometimes get stall-like when turns or brakes at low speed. Other than this, car runs pretty OK (ave. 25 mile/gal). My friend's 2000 outback got the similar problem, is this a common issue of subaru? Since CEL is complicated, I hope subaru's CEL is related to a particular component . Any ideas?

  • fibber2fibber2 Mid Hudson Valley, NYPosts: 3,732

    The light will come and go if the problem is intermittant and not steady state, but the problem will be logged in the system and remain. Step one is to get the DTC (diagnostic trouble code) read out from the OBDII computer. Find a friend who owns a tool, or try a local autoparts store like AutoZone. Many will help you in hope that you will then buy the repair parts from them.

  • I had an intermittent CEL and occassional hesitation driving uphill with my 2001 OB Ltd (60k miles). Turned out I had a bad knock sensor. I used some $ubaru bucks to get it fixed, runs like new once again.
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,508
    Oh, good. That's where your explanation led me to believe it was. Definitely a warranty item, unless someone overfilled the differential at some point.

    I'm glad to hear it worked out for you!
  • jcpressjcpress Posts: 15

    Thanks again, Steve.

    <<BTW: where in NY?>>

    Long Island
  • fibber2fibber2 Mid Hudson Valley, NYPosts: 3,732
    Grew up in Massapequa.......

  • rutger3rutger3 Posts: 361
    What the heck is Subaru thinking. Went for a test drive on Monday drove an 06 XT. It was nice except I noticed the high pitched sound during the entire drive. Then I went on these boards and found it is not uncommon. Why would they not fix this before potential buyers drive them? This lost them a sale, terrible marketing decision.
  • once_for_allonce_for_all Posts: 1,640
    you likely were hearing the turbo whine. If it is annoying to you, try the standard Forester, it has enough power for any situation I have found, plus will get you about 5 mpg better.

  • Howdy. I'm the proud owner of a lovely little Subie named Harriet. Unfortunately, her headlights have not been lovely lately. Left one (lowbeam) went. In the attempt to replace it, I noticed that the electrical connector was not connecting. I realized why when part of the black plastic connector housing fell off in my hand. Is there a better solution than going to my (expensive) repair shop or the (probably just as expensive) Subie dealer and having them replace the entire headlight wiring? Can the connector itself be fixed? Aargh.
    Thanks for help in advance.

    Kate (and Harriet, though I'm a mite upset with her right now.. and my lack of repair skillz)
  • fibber2fibber2 Mid Hudson Valley, NYPosts: 3,732
    Dear Harriet,

    I am so sorry to hear that you are feeling under the weather at the present time, but I think the prescription for your improved heath might not be too painful to bear. Tell your master, Kate, that while the high beam connector looks to be fairly unique and quite possibly expensive, the low beam (H1 bulb) uses fairly generic right angle spade connectors. I am willing to bet that for a mere dollar or two, she could stop by her local autoparts store and buy a blister pack of connectors that would do the job reasonably well. If there are any that specifically say "high temperture applications", those would probably be the best bet. It is heat that probably killed the original ones. And if she asked politely, the nice man behind the counter might even loan her a wire stripper and crimping tool. And if she promises her undying devotion to make all of her future purchases there, she might even be able to get him to spare 2 minutes and have him come out and do the job! Oh, and remind her to give him coffee money as a thank you when the task is done.....

    (Kate - thanks for the laugh, I needed it today!!!)

  • rutger3rutger3 Posts: 361
    My mistake, it was a 2.5 X model, no turbo. I guess I could find one without the noise, but this problem seems common enough that you would think Subaru would issue a fix for them.
  • lilbluewgn02lilbluewgn02 PAPosts: 1,085
    most likely the diffy...normal for Subie AWD
  • c_hunterc_hunter Posts: 4,487
    If it was the fuel pump, like 3-4 people have reported here, then I agree Subaru should pull those cars and fix them ASAP. When we see 3-4 independent posts here, I start thinking they have a design flaw or a bad batch of pumps. The thing is, most dealers are oblivious to stuff like this (the car practically has to burst into flames before the notice defects). Subaru of America needs to make this a priority otherwise more customers will get a bad impression of the vehicle. If they think it's normal, then they won't buy a Forester because it appears to be a noisy car.

  • jcpressjcpress Posts: 15

    So did I. Well, technically East Massapequa.

  • dstew1dstew1 Posts: 275
    "you likely were hearing the turbo whine. If it is annoying to you, try the standard Forester"

    As the proud owner of an 06 XT, I sincerely hope the turbo whine wouldn't annoy anyone. It's simply the car's way of saying:


    (Only 910 miles and dying to give baby what it wants)
  • once_for_allonce_for_all Posts: 1,640
    lol I like the sound of turbos also. But, the conservative side of me dominates the other 95% of the time.

    My favorite--a turbo whine in a diesel engine. Now THAT is where the performance and economy are perfectly welded.

Sign In or Register to comment.