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Subaru Crew Problems & Solutions



  • tim3tim3 Posts: 28
    That's an interesting thought. But gasoline brand and octane rating have no impact on the problem.
  • tim3tim3 Posts: 28
    I know the dealer did a scan and it apparently came up completely clean. I was under the impression that they did it in realtime, but I could be wrong about that part.

    So, is reflashing the ECU really the same as resetting it by disconnecting the battery? I tried this a long time ago and it didn't have any effect. I thought a reflash was something the dealer had to do.

    I don't know if this is at all related to the knock sensor, but the car does ping at highway speeds in the summer with the A/C on unless I put a higher octane fuel in it.

    I think posted earlier that I used to regularly overfill the gas tank :blush: and it would buck badly as I was pulling away from the gas station until I stopped, turned the car off and restarted it immediately. Then it would run just fine. I keep wondering if maybe I damaged some aspect of the emission control system by regularly overfilling it and this is now causing the problem. It's the same bucking and lurching just under different circumstances now.
  • colin_lcolin_l Posts: 591
    I have to admit, I'm a bit mystified as to what exactly could be the problem-- it's the sporadic nature of it that leaves me without a good answer. I can answer more about the ECU though, so that sounds good right now. :)

    There's 3 things that can be done to an OBDII ECU:

    - Reflash. Totally resets all parameters including idle speed. Even if you reflash the same code (ecu map), you will remove any learned parameters.

    - Realtime. This is what the ecu has done on its own to learn your detonation, idle quality, engine load, etc. You can also tweak some parameters here if you have the right tools, but not all of them like in a Reflash.

    - Reset. This is in fact the same as removing the battery for a sufficient amount of time. The realtime parameters are discarded, and you are back to the base map. (Whatever was reflashed last.)
  • tim3tim3 Posts: 28
    Now, I get it. I think. It sounds like it would be worth it to try resetting the ECU again. The last time I removed the negative battery cable it was just for a minute or two. It sounds like I should do it for longer -- like an hour or more?

    I don't have the tools or the knowledge to do a real time on my own, so I'll leave that to the dealer if it gets to that.

    This is a very mystifying problem for sure. My brother who has been a mechanic (mostly Ford and GM) for 30 years as no idea either.
  • I assume you haven't gotten a CEL (Check Engine Light) from this ... may be worth having a shop check for trouble codes to see if anything comes up tho' I'd expect the CEL to be on if there are any stored trouble codes.
  • picachupicachu Posts: 7
    Took the car to the dealer over the weekend and it was hooked up to the ac machine. Of course there was a different manager on duty this time and everything checked out ok. This tech says the temp got down to 40 degrees in the shop and the cycling is normal so the system will work more efficiently. Sounds like a bunch of bull but we'll see after I hit 10k on the car.

    I have also been hearing a noise after backing up and driving forward. The tech heard the noise and says its the antilock brakes performing a self test. If the car sits for more than 15 minutes and then is put into reverse and then drive a self test is performed. The tech said most people don't hear the noise.
  • aveskiaveski Posts: 7
    I have a ‘08 Legacy 2.5 special Edition with almost 59k. Just has an oil & filter change today at the dealer.
    The technician stated that the rear trailing arm bushings are worn and will need to be replaced in order to get an inspection sticker. Will also need a four-wheel alignment.
    Driving is 75% on interstate and 25% local and secondary roads in Maine.
    I have a few questions.
    Is this early, mileage wise, for the bushings to wear? Anyone else have the same situation?
    What is/should be the average cost to repair?
    Thanks for your help.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Never heard that before, so I guess it does seem early.

    It's just a rubber bushing, though, right? Can't cost much to replace.

    To be honest my concern would be what caused that premature wear? Alignment maybe?
  • In my state (Virginia), the amount of fraud associated with the safety inspection program is pretty remarkable. I think it's unlikely those bushings are worn out. I think it's quite likely that in this recession the dealer's new car sales are down, maybe way down. Guess where they might try and make up the slack.

    Have you noticed any clunks, noises, changes in handling? Why not get down there and look yourself? Or ask the mechanic to point out the bushings and explain the evaluation of wear. (and be prepared for a creative explanation).

    Maybe there is no fraud in your neighborhood on inspections, but in my area it's the norm. Especially in this economy.
  • Yeah right! If this is true, Subaru quality has really sunk lately to a very low. Time to poke your head underneath and look at the "bad components." You are looking for cracked decomposing rubber parts that are made into the metal parts of the suspension.

    I can never stress this loud enough to any car owner. Even if you do not work on your own car. Get a shop manual from the auto parts store and learn where parts are and how to determine if they are bad. When your mechanic is feeding you a line, fire him!

    I seriously doubt you have a problem. We have units kissing 300K and all of these bushings are in good shape so far. But as I said, LOOK AT Them and see for yourself. Not sure, take it to a well known independent alignment shop and ask for a wheel alignment. Oh, I also seriously doubt you will fail inspection with this problem unless you have extremely worn tires or a steering wheel pulling big time! Don't have that problem do you. That makes me question this dealer that much more.

    Another note. We just bought a new Toyota and it will stay in my shop for repairs! If jobbed out, it goes to a carefully screened shop out there! Dealers are well known for claiming stuff going wrong when nothing is. I had a laugh recently when I saw the first service for the new Toyota costing $200. Check/adjust the front and rear brakes, change the oil and rotate tires. Who do they think they are kidding? Yet, people continue to pay that kind of money for nothing! Guess it pays to be dishonest!

    One final note. On an 87 Mitshibishi years ago, I caught a bad bushing when I had raised the rear end for inspection. I had begun shaking each part side to side and front to back looking for play. I caught one bad bushing when the whole wheel assembly moved about 3/4 of an inch from front to back. Shake on these things, push on them looking for anything that is loose or making noise. Grounded that vehicle on the spot.
  • colin_lcolin_l Posts: 591
    59k on a '08-- wow!

    You drive a lot, and I feel that it's technically possible for there to be a bushing issue-- but I agree with the others that fraud is more likely. They're fishing for revenue.

    My state doesn't have inspections and occasionally, yes, this does result in some clunkers on the road that shouldn't be. But it does mitigate a lot of bogus 'repairs' in the name of safety or emissions.
  • I bet we could start a thread on "BS Inspection Horror Stories". Here's mine for the week, thanks to a coworker I've been slowly educating on car stuff for a few years.

    Takes his late model Volvo in to the dealer this week, passes inspection just fine, except for "weak headlights". Won't pass without two new "headlight assemblies" for only $800. Now his lights are fine and he knows it, so he takes off the failed sticker (which describes the problem) and goes to another shop, non dealer. Headlights are fine of course, but they do find a "worn brake line", but that's only $250 to fix and you can only take so much time off from work to mess with this stuff, and $250 is lots less than $800, so he lets them do it. Who knows, maybe that brake hose did have a scuff on it. I should probably get down and at least see if it looks like a new line, but what's the point. Damage done, and in my local this is simply the norm.

    For us guys that grew up with Gus' Model Garage this stuff is murder.

    OK, next?.....
  • phil2000phil2000 New JerseyPosts: 195
    Okay everybody. At 15:21 (3:21 eastern daylight time) on the 30th of July 2009 at mile marker 19.1 on the Atlantic City Expressway, New Jersey. NORTH latitude 39 degrees 32 minutes 05.59 seconds by WEST longitude 74 degrees 42 minutes 48.9 seconds.

    I reached 300,000 miles on my 2000 Forester.
  • mr_jmtmr_jmt Posts: 9
    picachu, Thanks for the update. I've been traveling for work and have not yet been back to the dealer. Planned to last night, but had meetings until 7:30 pm. The a/c issue is somewhat annoying, but I have gotten used to it, but will still report it when I go in. Same with the noise. The only other issue I am having is the rough idling. Otherwise, I really love the car. Rides very smooth, is very quiet and gets 28+ mpg on the highway. Since this is my first Subaru, I will keep a close eye on how things go as the car ages.
  • colin_lcolin_l Posts: 591
    Wow, greater than 30,000 miles per year. Congrats!

    I average 16,000 miles per year and I feel like that's too much. :)
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587

    And on the original Rear trailing arm bushings, no less! :D
  • Cool, have you posted a 300K mile repair history anywhere?

    (Still loving my 2006 Forester, with all of 22K)
  • where in VA are you with these crooks? In 20+ yrs. I've had no such problems in No. VA at a couple of different inspection places/garages.
  • In beautiful Charlottesville, really a very nice town. But we're dominated by academics and students, yuppies and "more money than sense" folks, imo. And local tradition. If basically every local shop is corrupt, what is your alternative? Mine is to take at least part of a day off work, drive over to the valley, have my wife follow me to drive me home, leave the car for a day or two, maybe catch a ride with a coworker and go pick up the car. All this because the State of VA mandates a program but does nothing to enforce it's integrity. And yes, I always try to give the shop at least an oil change or some minor job to help compensate for the too low fee ($18) that the state allows for inspection. Gov. Kaine tried to at least change the law for new vehicles this past year, making the first inspection due after two years on brand new vehicles. The auto lobby convinced everybody this would cause thousands of accidents and deaths, the change went nowhere.

    Some of my inspection stories are pretty damn comical, at least they would be if they didn't end up costing me money, time, and 20 blood pressure points :-) Bottom line, if you don't know anything about cars then it's just fine, the mechanic fixed my dim headlights for just $800, everybody needs two new tie rod ends at 30K miles, that brake light that worked an hour ago really did need to be replaced for just $25, and you really can't just replace the halfway worn brake pads, gotta have new rotors and calibers, dontcha know?
  • sorry to hear about your bizarro universe there, I know Cville well, my br-in-law lives there.

    ... they do, however, do some compliance checkups in VA, I know because even my honest & thorough local inspector here (a Sunoco station) who I get all my inspections from got nicked by the state on something minor when they sent an inspector by, "undercover" (and even though I've never had any service done there, they have never even once dinged me on an inspection and suggested or required any work).
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