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Subaru Forester Electrical/Lighting Issues



  • Could anyone provide instructions for fog light bulb replacement for Subaru Forester 2004. I purchased at the dealer's part number 84920GA400, however they wanted to charge for installation, even though they claimed there is never an install charge on any light bulbs bought from the dealer. Can anyone help with any info?
  • sms9955sms9955 Posts: 1
    2004 Forester - manual says to change bulbs for fog lights to use the dealer. Yeah, right!

    OK, so how do you change them?
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    All I know is that they're different than on my 98. I have the original bulbs, but I can only see the back of mine when I remove the lower covers under the engine bay.
  • wybird1wybird1 Posts: 2
    I have a 03 Forester and just went through changing a fog lamp bulb. I went to an auto parts supply who looked up the bulb #. It is listed wrong in the owner's manual, so you may want to check your local Subaru dealer for the part. Then when I had my oil changed, the guys changed out the bulb for me.
  • khoolkhool Posts: 8
    I own an 05 model (current shape) and had to replace a bulb around 6 mths into my ownership (bought new).

    I was told by the dealer that it had to be done by them cause they had to hoist the car and remove something to gain access to it.

    Charged me $150 AUD cause a bulb is not under warranty.

    That's the last time I let those thieving swines change a bulb in my car.
  • I have an 03 impreza with the EXACT same symptoms. Any ideas??? I tried a new bulb, it's definitely not the bulb. I removed the "breaker" in the fusebox and put it back, no change. High beam is dim too... did you get yours fixed rebecca8???? Any help would be great.

    Thanks. :confuse: :confuse: :confuse: ;)
  • We were driving in downtown Las Vegas last night, and the radio started acting funny (powering on/off on its own), and the ABS light came on while we were driving. About 3 minutes after this, I made a lane change, switching on my turn signal, when suddenly the instrument panel lit up with the ABS light, Oil System Status Light, Battery light, and the engine stopped working. I was unable to restart and the hazards dimmed out as the battery drained.

    A friend that I was driving with and I popped the hood to check all connections, and nothing seemed to be amiss. The vehicle has 75,000 miles on it, and the battery is the original. We're thinking it's a problem with my alternator because all of the accessories dimmed out. Anyone have a similar experience? Any idea how much replacing an alternator costs?

    Thanks in advance,
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,274
    Sounds like the alternator for sure. Replacement part costs about $120, if I remember correctly, and it takes about 20 minutes to replace it from start to finish. At least, it took me that long, so if you have a shop do it and they want to charge you more than 30 minutes labor, go somewhere else! If you fully charge the battery, you should get an hour or two of driving from the car, assuming you are not using all the accessories, lights, etc.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Yup that's the classic "bad alternator" signal on a subaru. As wes said takes 20 min and you can do it yourself in the parking lot of the auto-zone.

  • Hi. I am looking for advice. I own a 2004 Subaru Forester (original owner). The car has been great, and we kept up with regular maintenance. However, the car died Monday afternoon without warning. When my husband checked the battery, it was giving out a minimal charge. We decided to jump the battery. The car came back to life with one exception. The instrument cluster was virtually dead. The dealer's mechanic claims that my husband improperly jumped the car causing the instrument cluster to short. He is estimating a total of $1,000.00 for identifying the problem, a new cluster, and labor. I feel like we are being ripped off. Has anyone else heard of this as a problem with the 2004 Subaru Forester?
  • It is not confined to the 2004 Forester. It is a general situation when jumping cars with an ECU. The manual may call for a very specific sequence for connecting the cables to specific locations. People tend to just clamp the cables around here and there. If the manual is not followed exactly, fuses can be blown or the ECU messed up . More likely that is what happened, rather than actual damage to the instrument panel.
  • We were told we need to replace the instrument panel. I can only assume that the fuses were checked. We know that the computer is okay. Thanks for the information.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Even if the fuse was checked, go ahead and have it replaced.

    I ran across a situation where the fuse looked fine but wasn't, it had still burned out. I swear I could see no flaws in it, but a new one still fixed it.

    Worth the few pennies to try that.
  • How do you know the computer is OK? It is possible for a surge from a poorly executed jump to hurt an ECU and mess up the ECU's status and warning lights in the instrument panel.
    On the other hand, I don't see how a jump can pass the fuses and cause damage to the instrument panel itself.
  • The mechanic checked the ECU and said it was fine. Supposedly, he checked the fuses as well. From my discussion with him, they actually pulled out the instrument panel and checked the wiring as well. There were no warning lights on the instrument panel. The thing was absolutely dead with the exception of the mileage reading before the car was jumped. I will call first thing in the morning to discuss the fuses again. I just wasn't thinking about the logic in that. I did contact Subaru customer service, and a case file has been opened. Unfortunately my schedule is such that I cannot drive over until the afternoon to discuss the issue face to face.
  • Replacing fuse is really easy. Can't you buy fuses (get the list from owner's manual) from local auto store or wal-mart, replace it and see if it works. It will only cost you around $15 even you replace all the fuses in the fuse box.
  • I want to thank everyone for the advice. I am continuing to persue the fuse issue. When I questioned the technician who diagnosed the problem, he was emphatic that he tested the fuses. He felt that because the odometer always receives a charge, that the short ran through the odometer which caused the whole panel to short. He did not have a solid response for when the panel shorted (before or after jumping). At this point, I have referred the situation to Subaru for inquiry and will talk to the service manager in detail. I have reliable pricing information on the instrument cluster so that we can discuss an appropriate fee. I am not an electrical engineer, so I rely on the advice of others in this department. The car is at the dealership and the old panel has already been removed in preparation for the new panel. The dealership would not release the car back to us due to safety concerns. I wish I could say that I am being dealt with honestly, but my gut instinct is screaming otherwise. I will let you know about the outcome tomorrow.
  • My 2001 Forester would not start. The keyless entry also does not work. When I manually opened the door, I heard a slight whirring sound from the CD/Radio on the dash (factory installed). The light inside was extremely dim. I tried jumping the car, but absolutely nothing happened when using the key in the ignition. I bought a new battery to install myself and was told that I may need to reset the "override button". Any hint as to where to find this switch and/or tips on putting in the new battery other than the obvious of hooking up the terminals?
  • I just purchased a 2002 Subaru Forester that has a couple symptoms I am worried about. It appears as though my interior lights have a slight flicker to them. This is most noticeable when I am idoling. Similarly, when driving and I release the gas peddle and press the brakes (so the rpm's drop), it appears as though my headlights dim or flutter for a brief second. Any thoughts on what this might be or steps to correct would be greatly appreciated.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I wonder if the previous owner installed an underdrive pulley? That spins the alternator at a slower-than-normal rate.
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