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Subaru Legacy/Outback Engine Issues



  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I wouldn't complain - my Miata eats through spark plug wires every 30k miles. Not a mile longer.

    At 30k you start to notice a marked drop in power output, then you know you need wires.
  • lamericuslamericus Posts: 1
    I have the same problem as this poster.
    have a 1992 Legacy sedan. I have had this problem twice now once about a month ago and just today. It acts like its starving for fule sputter and then dies. Wont start and when you take the fuellines off the filter no fuel is coming out while you crank. First time I replaced the filter and added dry gas. Also took the fule pump out of the tank and checked it . That was operating fine. I should mention when i took the feul line off the filter it was under a lot of pressure. Ok back to the problem . I put the pump back in and tried it by cranking the enigine with the fuel line off it pumped. out line back on and the car ran fine. Today it did the same thing. I pulled the lines took the pump out again and it ran fine after it was put back in. Any help on this woyld be appreciated.
    Our car is a 1995 model.
    Poster suggested intake leak or MAF, MAP as problem
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,282
    When is it happening? During driving or at idle? How about the relay for the fuel pump - could that be failing intermittently?
  • greasefiregreasefire Posts: 2
    I am having major problems with my 2005 Legacy GT and wanted to see if others have had similar issues. I will begin with a saying we have at work Yakamatsu which is code for "You can't make this sh%t up"

    1:May 28 2008- Turbo failure resulting in metal shavings getting into the engine. This was covered under warranty and was repaired in about 35 days.
    2: March 31 2009- Loud knocking sound coming from engine, dealer determined the number 2 bearing had spun and wrecked the motor.This is covered under warranty repair and the engine scheduled for repair.(Car still at dealer)
    3.April 25 2009- After waiting weeks for parts the engine was reassemble and put back in the vehice. I received a call from the dealership with not so good news. There was a casting defect on one of the heads and the cam was seized. Parts were ordered.(Car still at dealer)
    May 14 2009- I received a call from the dealer that the car was road tested and finally ready for pick up!!!

    May 15 2009-I picked up the car and drove home 20 miles. When I pulled in my driveway I heard a ticking sound coming from the left side of the engine and a burning smell. I called the dealership and they asked me to return with the vehicle. The car was put on the lift and it was determined that the turbo had failed and would need to be replaced. I was then put back into a loaner car and sent on my way. About an hour after returing home the dealership called me and stated "The turbo for my car is on national back order and there are none available in the usa" I will update this post more as events unfold.
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,282
    Talk about sour luck! Whoa! You were not kidding when you said, "yakamatsu."
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Too late to call it a lemon, that's first year only.

    At least the dealer seems to be trying.
  • greasefiregreasefire Posts: 2
    Yes the dealer is trying and SOA is involved from a consumer affairs perspective. While this might not be a lemon law issue there are still options as a consumer. I have filed a K35 for with my local DMV and have the regional manager from SOA involved. I will post the out come for anyone having similar issues. I will say the service manager has been great as far as updates and general customer service.
  • jake68jake68 Posts: 3
    :confuse: OK, I have a 2005 Subaru Legacy GT 2.5 Limited. Great car, Lots of fun to drive. It has 54000 miles on it and for the last 5000 or so the Check engine light keeps coming on. I used the OBD reader and the code is 0304, misfire in cylinder # 4. I want to swap the coil with cylinder #2 to check if that's the problem. However, I don't know whick cylinder is #4. I even bought a service manual. It shows a block diagram of the engine and list the cylinder # for each one. BUT, it doesn't give any indication of the orientation of the diagram??? If I assume the top of the diagram is the back of the car then Cylinder # 4 is on the Divers side front. If I assume the opposite orientation cylinder # 4 is on the passenger side rear.

    Which one is it? Can anyone tell me which one is cylinder # 4?

  • jake68jake68 Posts: 3
    :blush: Oooops! Make that, If I assume the top of the diagram is the back of the engine compartment, then cylinder # 4 is Drivers side rear and if I assume the opposite Orientation it would be Passenger side front. Sorry About that.

  • jake68jake68 Posts: 3
    OK, I found it. Cylinder # 4 is drivers side rear (closest to the firewall).

    Now I have another question. I've unbolted the 2 coil packs but they won't pull off. I also can't get the wire to unplug from it. It looks like it clips to the coil but I can't see it well enough to se how it unclips and I don't want to force it.

    Does anyone have any ideas on how the clip works?

  • sbcvulcansbcvulcan Posts: 3
    I am looking at one Legacy 2.5 GT in particular and I have some questions. Looking at a turbo, would be first one I owned.

    Some questions

    1. Is an 05 with only 25k miles and two owners. I find that suspicious, do you?

    2. Has been brought in three times with service from the 20k to 25k mile mark for Engine/powertrain computer/module check. Is this an indication of a problem? I saw this on carfax report

    3. The battery was xchanged in 2007, rather early for an original 05 car?

    4. The car whines on acceleration aside from the whoosh of the turbo. Is this an expected sound with this car. The automatic trans turbo was not loud like this manual i tried, although obviosuly I am revving much more.

    5. Is there any reason to get one transmission over the other in thsi model?

    Any opinions, answers to some or all is appreciated. Thanks.
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,282
    1. Difficult to say. Can you determine length of ownership in either case? If the first ownership was long and the second extremely short (encompassing the 20-25K period when the shop visits occurred), that may be indicative of a systemic problem. And, given it is still under 5 year / 60K powertrain warranty, Subaru may have deemed such a problem to be owner-error and therefore not covered under warranty.

    2. Again, hard to say. Obviously, there was some sort of problem or concern, but without seeing the tickets, what is it? Different things, recurring, etc?

    3. Subaru batteries are weak. Depending on the climate, I think replacing the stock battery after two years is about right. I would replace mine much sooner to hedge my bets against being stranded somewhere when it is really cold....

    I cannot comment on concerns 4 and 5.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    My 98 Forester only had one coil pack, that's interesting.

    Any how, the electrical connections usually have a locking retainer you have to push in to slide the connection out. Try a light and maybe a mirror, too.

    While I'm at it - here's a great purchase - I got a "headlight" that I can wear as a head band, so the light aims wherever I look, that was the BEST purchase I have made in terms of tools in a decade. I love it. Use it ALL the time. I strongly recommend one.

    It's smaller than this but you get the idea:


    That plus a mirror and you should see it.

    Good luck.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    My 2 cents' worth...

    1. Yes a little suspicious. Guy buys it, totals it, sells it to his brother in another state, good luck tracking the wreckage.

    2. Again, yes, because combined with the low miles it means this car has not been healthy most of its life.

    3. A little early, could be another symptom of a car parked due to not running properly.

    4. Yikes. Diffs, trans gears, AWD, who knows. Run don't walk.

    5. Manual is the perfect match for the turbo, IMHO.

    I'd pass, seriously, this one has red flags all over it. The 2010s are coming out so people will be trading up, leaving plenty of good used ones for purchase.
  • yatesjoyatesjo Posts: 186
    3. Subaru batteries are weak. Depending on the climate, I think replacing the stock battery after two years is about right. I would replace mine much sooner to hedge my bets against being stranded somewhere when it is really cold....

    That is interesting to hear. I was shocked when our 2005 Legacy battery failed after only 3 years. My Ford worked on the same battery for 9 years, when even the alternator failed at 5 years, and the Miata was on it's original gel cell per the markings for 13 years before it died (absolutely amazing if you ask me). I'm in San Jose so the batteries are never stressed by cold temperature extremes; when I was in MO I was generally happy to get 5 years on a battery.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I think I got 5 years out of the battery in my 98 Forester, but it only had something like 265 CCAs.

    The replacement battery I got had very nearly double the CCAs, and it was just much easier to start it after that.

    Had you checked the fluid levels and added distilled water every year? I think nowadays batteries are often overlooked.
  • sbcvulcansbcvulcan Posts: 3
    I'm not buying it. THe dealership never had the previous owner call me nor did they call me back. I 've never seen any dealership so disinterested in selling a car. It had been there two weeks.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Good decision, IMHO.
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,282
    I think I got 5 years out of the battery in my 98 Forester, but it only had something like 265 CCAs.

    Yes, that is what I mean by "weak" batteries. The CCA rating on them is horrifically low. In extremely cold weather (colder than about -20F, which is common in Fairbanks), all presets on my radio, etc., would reset on my car due to the amount of juice required to start the car. It started, but the engine cranked slowly. In comparison, replacing that battery with with a 600 or higher CCA, the engine cranks quickly, without unduly stressing the battery.

    Now, one can add a "battery blanket" in cold climates, which will heat the battery when the car is plugged in (other heaters such as an engine block heater, oil pan heater, and transmission heater are required equipment) and nurse the battery. However, doing so only makes the driver more vulnerable to problems when the time comes that the car could not be plugged in and must be cold-started. With a good battery, no such nursing is needed.

    I have batteries, such as the one in my old '69 Chevy truck, that are on year ten and going strong in this climate. The stock Subaru battery just will not last that long due to the demand placed on the battery. I would much rather spend the $100 to replace it early on than find out just how long it will last, because the day it fails will inevitably be when I am at some remote location with temperatures in the "highly unpleasant" range. ;)
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,282
    I agree with that!

    However, if the GT is a wagon, 2005 is the last year of that option and the only year of the turbo-GT-wagon combo, so they are a unique breed.
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