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Subaru Crew Problems & Solutions

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  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Just tryin' to keep it friendly & constructive.

    Any how, you shared pics which were useful. :shades:
  • samm43samm43 Posts: 195
    A U haul 8x10 dual axle covered trailer is one heavy beast even when empty. And besides the static weight, it will have considerable wind resistance. Plan on keeping your speeds under 55 and 50 would be far better still. I think you are going to be quite overloaded if truth be told here. Very good, defensive, think-ahead drivers can manage overloads but that still won't protect them in an unfortunate event of liability issues.

    If you could post a picture of the tools I think we collectively could guesstimate the weight. From what you describe, I think there is a lot of cast iron involved which is very dense and heavy metal. Without knowing the size of these tools it is next to impossible to help guess a weight. Table saws alone can range from 2' to 10' in length. Dining room furniture could be solid oak, maple, birch and are all very heavy hard woods. If you have a fairly accurate bathroom scale, it might help if your tools are small enough that you could set one end at a time on it. Or stand on it while you lift one end of the saw and have someone else add up all the numbers. The scale will be very handy to find out your tongue weight as you load and sort to get the desired tongue load. Going heavier is preferable to lighter if you have trouble getting an exact ideal tongue load as per the link sites you get advice from. I think tongue should be 10% of gross trailer weight (gross meaning trailer curb weight empty and the payload).

    Once you get some pictures for us or a weight, I would ask some of the Subaru guys here about exhaust manifold temps with this trip and whether you are doing hills or not and whether Subaru's have sturdy e manifolds or not.

    U haul should be able to give you weight of their trailer over the phone. I'm going to throw a guess out there of a U haul dually covered 8x10 will be at or over your 1500lb limit empty. They make them heavy (strong) because they know people will fill them with bricks, gravel you name it.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    http://www.uhaul.com/Reservations/EquipmentDetail.aspx?model=MV

    You were very close, 1,250lbs empty. 2,800lbs gross trailer weight. 1,550lbs max carrying capacity.

    It does include the brakes that do not need a controller, so that's good.

    Here is the bad part...

    Forester Towing Capacity 2,400 lbs.

    2,400-1,250 = 1,150

    That's 1,150 for all the cargo in the trailer AND all the cargo in the vehicle and passengers.

    So that really isn't an option IMHO.

    -mike
    Subaru Guru and Track Instructor
  • kurtamaxxxguykurtamaxxxguy Posts: 1,721
    edited March 2011
    Hi there. I had my '09 Forester XT in for 30K service and its required transmission filter change. I had asked the dealer to flush the transmission, but they never did (they __did__ change the spark plugs ahead of schedule, though. :surprise: ).

    To get this flush done, I took it to an independent shop with subaru trained techs and the trans was flushed for real with the warranty required Subaru Trans fluid. The shop had an excellent reputation from several discerning friends of mine.
    Surprise, surprise, I learned the old trans fluid was marginal, showing signs of breakdown despite relatively modest driving.

    The new fluid didn't change how the trans works (that 4 speed AT sometimes grabs rather roughly, but the 2 different dealer techs I spoke with claim its behaving normally), but at least it's clean. :)
  • sgloonsgloon Posts: 303
    Thanks all for pointing out all this info I would not have known about!!!

    Unfortunately, I don't have weights on anything as the stuff is in ME and I'm in CO, so won't know until I get there, which would be too late to plan anything, as Im just going there and coming right back. :-( I'll try to see if my brother is willing to get over there and take a pic or two, but he tries not to go there as it is about an hour out of his way.

    The dining room table/chairs are Cherry, I believe, so not as heavy as Oak. It's the kind with the fold down sides and leaves to make it much larger. The sewing cabinet is cherry, too. All nice hardwood and much lighter than the furniture being made now a days because it is solid wood, no glue composite.

    The Table saw I don't think is more than 4x4, it may be more like 3x3 (I'm going on a distant memory). Band saw was more like 2x2 but tall. I have no idea what they would weigh? Both are probably 20-30 years old?

    I found the 5X8 trailer doesn't have the surge brakes and weighs 800# alone, leaving me only 200# to put in the trailer. The 5x10 or 6x12 are about 1800# and both have the surge brakes, so I could go to the 2400# limit with them, per the specs, which I believe would be plenty.

    Re: manifolds, I'll mostly be on interstates and will not be going up into the mountains in CO, I'll stop just before the foothills start. So, it'll be 5000 foot elevation gain over 2200 miles. Otherwise, just the hills I'll hit on the highways or near to highways.

    I didn't realize that the weight limit includes what is being carried in the car. The owner's manual words it as though it is only talking about the total trailer weight, (ie weight of trailer + stuff you are carrying in the trailer) not total trailer weight plus passengers and other stuff in the car. Comments??
  • samm43samm43 Posts: 195
    edited March 2011
    Glad we all could help.

    Pretty sure that gross weight they are talking about includes everything, car and trailer curb and payload weights. I know this for a fact on my last 5 or more cars and I think all before then too. Could you type out the exact wording? But OTOH there are some Subaru old hats here that will be able to confirm I'm sure without you going to that trouble.

    So according to your size guesses, I'll put a few weights out there and see what we all come up with. I agree with you on the cherry being a lighter hardwood. Makes a real nice set too. So I say the bandsaw is 250lb to 300 (allow my guesses 50 lb +or- each) The band saw likely has the most cast iron because likely both drive wheels, base and table will all be CI. If the table is 2x2 then it could have 20" wheels. Sounds like a nice old saw. Old tools like that are such a joy to use compared to so many of the Chinese stuff nowadays. And they are made to have bearings replaced and sized with common sizes that are readily available too. Tablesaw at 200 to 250lb. But to be sure it would be so easy to add 100 lb each to these without seeing them. You must have the turbo? Do a nice fresh oil change with 100% synthetic before you head out too. Unless others here say not to use the synthetic. I suggested it because it endures heat better than mineral and your turbo will be creating some pretty good heat at times.

    Not sure when you are leaving but would like to wish you a good trip. Successful and safe. ;)

    Sam
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,461
    edited March 2011
    Okay, here's the skinny on the total allowable vehicle weight, per the 2010 Forester owner's manual (beginning on page 8-12):

    Vehicle GVWR (does NOT include trailer): 4480
    Vehicle curb weight (manual transmission): 3250
    Max Payload (total weight of people, things in the car): 1230
    Max towing: 2400

    Now, while the GVWR for the Forester does not include the towed weight, it DOES include the tongue weight and the weight of anything borne by the car, such as the hitch receiver.

    So, the weight of your hitch and associated accessories will add 50#, plus your tongue weight of 200#, puts your effective total payload for the car at 980#. Remember, this includes the driver, so subtract your weight to get what is left!

    Sam, sgloon noted earlier that his car is a manual transmission, so no, it is not a turbo. From my own experiences, that won't be a problem as long as he is not expecting a speedy drive home! I should also note that fuel economy will likely be in the 18 mpg range, so plan on frequent stops for refueling!
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    On my 98 Forester manual towing reduced my mileage from the usual 25 to about 17mpg, so your estimate is pretty much spot-on.
  • phil2000phil2000 New JerseyPosts: 195
    I am having trouble uploading a contact to the phonebook through BlueConnect. I did one last week then could not do any others. Today I as able to do one more and that was it. Looks like BlueConnect has a one entry per day limit. Anyone have a similiar problem?
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Depending on the frontal area of the trailer, you may further reduce down the MPGs. A flat front facing trailer like that can really bog down fuel economy.

    -mike
    Subaru Guru and Track Instructor
  • tommy312tommy312 Posts: 15
    Can't seem to download my phonebook. Is there a way to get all the contacts from my phone to the car? (2011 outback3.6) I own an 06 X5 & leased an MKX all I had to do was hit a button & say the name??? :confuse: :confuse: :confuse:
  • phil2000phil2000 New JerseyPosts: 195
    Subaru uses a different system. I had installed an aftermarket radio in my 00 Forester and it worked better that the one I now have in my 11 Outback. The Outback has an additional speaker for the Bluetooth. With this system, I have to import contacts one at a time. See page 11 (http://www.autointelligence.com/upload/assets/pdfs/all 3 languages 40510.- pdf).
  • tommy312tommy312 Posts: 15
    what a bummer that sucks!!! Thanks for the help.
  • phil2000phil2000 New JerseyPosts: 195
    I wish Auto manufacturers went to places like Jensen, Alpine, Blaupunkt for their radios. To add a USB connector in my car cost between $230-$300 just for the parts. With that kind of money, I can get a CD receiver even a low end DVD reciever both with remotes and cool displays.

    Wishing you the best on practical solution.
  • sgloonsgloon Posts: 303
    Yep, good point, Mike. I just found another option. You can rent a U-box and put it on a trailer specifically made to haul it. Uhaul said the box can handle the weight of the tools. The trailer & box are lighter than the 5x8 trailer, but alot taller (7-1/2' inside), so that would definitely be taller than the car by a couple to a few feet...drag there for sure...and I would have to bring it both ways, instead of a one way rental. But looks to be the cheapest deal so far...

    No surge brakes on this trailer.
  • sgloonsgloon Posts: 303
    Boy, did I come to the right place to ask my ???s. I'm learnign so much! Thanks! I'm leaving towards the end of the month, so still have some time to get this figured out for the best option.

    OK, so in my manual, it says the

    Maximum total trailer weight Condition
    1000 bs when towing trailer w/o brakes
    2400 lbs when towing trailer w/ brakes

    And, per xwesx , I'll have 750# left for stuff to go in the car...although, since most of the 'stuff" is pretty bulky, I'll probably only have clothes and coolers (lots of drinks!:-) in the car for the trip.

    But, it gets me to thinking, I may want to try to fit more in the back of the subie...perhaps the table saw taken apart would be able to fit in the back, and then I wouldn't be hauling as much in the trailer....

    While I'm talking to the experts here, I have another question. All things equal, would it be easier on the car to haul most of the weight in the trailer, and have the car lighter, as far as gas mileage, etc.? I'm thinking once underway there would be less stress on the car that way?
  • samm43samm43 Posts: 195
    edited March 2011
    The more weight in the car the better. Weight in the trailer creates what is called shock loading when going over bumps. You feel that shudder through the hitch to the car when the trailer wheels go over bumps. This shudder shock goes right through the car. The most negative effect from that would be in the transmission.
    So the extra weight in the car is absorbed through the cars far more compliant suspension which quells that shock loading. If I were you I would try to keep trailer height as low as possible because I think wind resistance will be the larger stress than weight. That is why I suggested doing only 50 to 55 max. I would be tempted to a affix a wind deflector to the roof rails since the distance is so great it might pay off the trouble or expense if you rent one from U Haul. Ask if a neighbor or friend has one you could borrow. The shorter the tongue the more affective it will be.

    Sam
  • steverstever Ex Yooper, just arrived in New MexicoPosts: 40,540
    If you live in a warm climate and recently bought a Subaru, a reporter wants to interview you. Please email pr@edmunds.com no later than Wednesday, March 9, 2011 and provide your daytime contact information and a few words about your decision.

    Moderator
    Need help navigating? stever@edmunds.com - or send a private message by clicking on my name.

  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,461
    edited March 2011
    I agree, Sam. The more weight in the car versus the trailer, the better. In addition to what Sam mentioned, this also creates a more favorable weight ratio for the tow vehicle (which is especially important if the trailer will not have brakes on it).

    Personally, if I were to do the U-box (which sounds like a good idea), I would prefer it to be longer with a shorter height versus taller and/or wider. I know there are 5x10 utility trailers out there, which will be sufficiently small to not be much wider than the car and easy to see around using the car's stock mirrors with some small convex stick-on mirrors attached. The flat-deck trailer will also come in at substantially less empty weight than the enclosed trailer, and they are quite cheap to procure (I would estimate around $1,400 for a nice one in Colorado) while being fairly easy to re-sell, if you're interested in that option.

    Especially if you'll be towing both ways, you don't want to underestimate the loss of 10 mpg, or approximately 1/3 of your fuel economy! Also, if you're running a flat trailer with a low-slung box the full way, you'll probably get better economy than either the smaller-footprint trailer with a tall box or an enclosed unit. Again, I don't know what your options are in this regard (U-box).

    -----

    Sam also brought up another point I failed to mention before: trailer shock. Along with this, noise from the hitch-to-receiver connection is LOUD when the trailer hits any sort of bumps, especially if running empty. I mitigated this issue by firming up the connection between the two units using a home-made wedge, but you can buy commercial units that are supposed to snug up the connection as well. If you're looking at a 5,000-mile round-trip, I strongly recommend you stabilize this joint for your own sanity, if nothing else!

    The way I did this was to take a scrap piece of 1/8", 2"-wide galvanized sheet metal about 3" long (leftover chunk of a Simpson Strong Tie), bend it at a 90-degree angle, and use a hammer to tap it into the top or bottom of the joint (whichever is easier to access with your particular ball hitch). You'll likely have to customize it to fit your particular gap, but you want it to be quite snug. I used a small pre-drilled hole that was on the SST to run a nylon rope through in order to tie a loop to secure it to the hitch in case it worked itself loose.

    It dramatically quiets down / muffles the trailer noise, and so far I have not had any problems with it slipping out.
  • colin_lcolin_l Posts: 591
    Hmm, I'm going to have to look into shimming my Kuat bicycle trailer now. It's not that loud at all, but seeing the bikes dance 6-12" on bumpy highways is unnerving to me and I bet for drivers behind me too. ;)
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,461
    The shim isn't going to help with the amount the trailer dances, only the amount of noise its dancing sends through to the car. Additional weight on the trailer will calm it down, as will additional shock absorption (though, admittedly, that would be a little more complicated!). My little ATV trailer bounces all over the place when I pull it empty, but it settles right down with a 200-300# load.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Maximum total trailer weight Condition
    1000 bs when towing trailer w/o brakes
    2400 lbs when towing trailer w/ brakes


    Ok here is the point I've been making all along.

    If you get one of those box-in-trailer things that DOES NOT HAVE BRAKES, essentially you will be running across the country w/o an insurance on your car.

    If that is an acceptable risk, then I say go for it. But if you value your insurance, you may want to think twice about doing that.

    As for the portion in the car v. trailer. Make sure you put any heavy items in the car as far forward as possible, you don't want to load up the car with heavy items in the rear and the trailer front this will cause the rear to sag. Try to get as much of the load over the trailer axle and in the front most portion of the vehicle itself.

    -mike
    Subaru Guru and Track Instructor
  • colin_lcolin_l Posts: 591
    I dunno, I think shims would help. It doesn't have wheels... actually I think I misspoke. It's certainly more of a bike rack than a trailer.

    It's this one.

    There's a hitch extender with has some play in it, and then the rack itself has play in the extender. That free play is what I would look to shim up.
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,461
    Yes, you're right. Sorry, I was thinking you meant one of those mini-trailers. :blush:
  • fibber2fibber2 Mid Hudson Valley, NYPosts: 3,732
    Colin, I use the receiver for bike racks and a cargo tray. In the case of the 2" cargo tray stinger, I have a stubby 2" to 1.25" converter as an interface to the receiver on the OBW. That's potentially 2 points of free play for noise and wobble.

    I addressed this by adding nuts and using hardened bolts as the joining pin. In the case of the hollow stinger, I embedded a nut in a block of epoxy, and glued the block into the core with flexible contact cement. You can tighten it down nicely. In the case of the solid 1.25" stinger, I machined in a 6 sided insert, and lightly tapped in a slightly thinned nut flush with the original surface. Again, it tightens up beautifully. No more free play!!
  • saywhatsaywhat Posts: 61
    Yesterday I noticed that the one-touch open feature wasn't working when I hit the button for the moonroof; as soon as I lifted my finger from the button it would stop. Then when I held it down continuously, it would only open about 6 inches at a time before I would have lift my finger and depress the button again.

    I remember there was something about closing the moonroof and holding the close button for over one second, and then opening it about 15 inches, and then closing it again, and holding the close button for over one second, but does anyone know for sure the proper procedure?

    Thanks Bob G
  • phil2000phil2000 New JerseyPosts: 195
    I had a similar problem with my power window on my 2011 Outback after I reconnect the negative battery terminal.

    The proceedure was to lower the window halfway. Then raise it completely and hold the button for 1 second.

    It might be the same way for your moonroof.
  • colin_lcolin_l Posts: 591
    Steve, I completely missed this reply somehow. I'm intrigued... do you have any pics of what you fabricated?
  • fibber2fibber2 Mid Hudson Valley, NYPosts: 3,732
    Colin, I e-mailed you two pictures. Unfortunately since the demise of carspace, I don't have a hosting site. Feel free to put them up somewhere if they are helpful to you.
  • colin_lcolin_l Posts: 591
    Got your email, thanks! :)
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