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Subaru Crew Problems & Solutions

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  • stackman1stackman1 Posts: 53

    Thanks for quick reply - Xwesx. Thought as much....

  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,524

    @stackman1 said: Screwed that quote and reply above. Second paragraph me not GirlCarBuilder

    Stackman, just make sure that you put a full blank line between your response and the nearest line that either includes, or is preceded by, a '>' symbol. That should do the trick. :)

    2010 Subaru Forester, 2011 Ford Fiesta, 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup, 1974 Ford Pinto Wagon
  • fibber2fibber2 Mid Hudson Valley, NYPosts: 3,733

    I once owned a Ford Fiesta (the original - bought it new in 1979) that had a similar problem to what you described above with the thermal sensor mounted on the evaporator core not being properly calibrated to the size of the core and the expansion valve. As a result it would constantly ice up and shut down. The proper fix was expensive. The workaround was to only dial the temp control to about 90% of max cold. By manually setting the threshold a little bit warmer, I actually achieve better AC performance by allowing the expansion valve to occasionally throttle back and not super chill the core to the point where it iced.

    On the subject of Gary (I'm assuming it's the same GrossGary seen on some boards?). His approach is to replace the O-rings and fill the system without evacuating first. That can leave an awfully high moisture content behind, along with a reduction in refrigerant capacity as some of that space is taken up by compress air (mostly nitrogen). Yes, it can work, but it's sloppy. Borrow a vacuum pump to go along with your gauge set.

  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,002

    @stackman1, as Xwesx said, there was a stray > in there. I zapped it so it should be "right" now.

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  • lilbluewgn02lilbluewgn02 PAPosts: 1,085
    edited April 6

    Have any of you had a problem with the windshield wipers going past the window and onto the A-pillar, as well as not stopping in the right position? This was happening to my 2002 WRX wagon until Friday, when the driver's side wiper stopped altogether. Any help or advice is much appreciated.

  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,762

    Quick question for the experts here.

    A friend is looking for a used Outback.

    What are the years affected with the head gasket problems?

    Thanks in advance!

  • fibber2fibber2 Mid Hudson Valley, NYPosts: 3,733

    Hey Serge! Take a look at the nut that hold the wiper arm to the splined shaft. I'll bet it's come loose and the arm at first jumped a tooth or two, and then came completely disengaged. In the words of Monty Python, the flay rod went out of skew on the treadle.

  • fibber2fibber2 Mid Hudson Valley, NYPosts: 3,733

    Head gasket issues?? I think the real question is when did they stop... The situation got better with improvements in head gasket design over the years, but long term survival of the open deck versions of the EJ25 is really dependent on the use of the Subaru coolant conditioner (Holts Radweld - basically borax). When Subi people get together, the topic still drifts to who's 2008/2009 recently went in for a teardown. The newest I've heard of was a 2010. It's one of the reasons I went for an FB engine.

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,116

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  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonPosts: 17,762

    Interesting article. Thanks!

    I used to be a huge Subaru fan and we've owned a couple. Other than oil leaks they were pretty good. Our son bought a new 2009 Impreza. At 25,000 miles it started using a quart of oil every 4-500 miles. The dealer was doing an "oil consumption test"

    Then at 30,000 miles, it threw a rod on the freeway one night out of the blue.

    Yes, it had been very well maintained.

    It was fixed under warranty. The Service Advisor (he knew me) told me off the cuff that this happens fairly often.

  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,524
    edited April 7

    @fibber2 said: When Subi people get together, the topic still drifts to who's 2008/2009 recently went in for a teardown. The newest I've heard of was a 2010. It's one of the reasons I went for an FB engine.

    I think that MY 2011 was the start of the FB series for Forester, but it did not roll out to Legacy/Outback and Impreza until 2012...? I'm sure cars101 could confirm. Head gaskets are definitely my primary concern with regard to my 2010 Forester.

    Funny enough, the one "real issue" we had with the car's engine this far was due to the oil pump coming loose and a seal between it and the block leaking profusely. It went from a tiny leak (somewhere around Ontario/Quebec on our transcontinental trip last Sept, and about 60K miles) to a fairly severe one (about a half-quart per fill-up at around 64K miles) by the time we were in Montana.

    Having a few stationary days in eastern Oregon, we were able to get a nearby dealer to take it in on short notice. The shop manager said that seal was probably getting very close to a full-on blowout, so it was a good thing we didn't wait to address until we arrived home (which was only about 3,000 miles later!). 71.3K miles on the car now.

    The 0/100 7-year warranty pretty much paid for itself right there. B)

    2010 Subaru Forester, 2011 Ford Fiesta, 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup, 1974 Ford Pinto Wagon
  • fibber2fibber2 Mid Hudson Valley, NYPosts: 3,733

    I think Subaru was somewhat cautious with the roll-out of the FB. It didn't make it to the Legacy & Outback until 2013, I believe. A 2012 CPO we looked at was still an EJ and while the deal was very attractive, I just didn't want to go there again.

    There have been some internal oil consumption issues with early FB's. Some bad rings, etc. But overall it looks (knock on wood) like a solid engine. Believe me, fingers crossed.

    In the mean time, my daughter, despite her putting the first real damage on my 12 year old car, is still thoroughly enjoying driving my old Outback. Don't get me wrong. Despite the HG issues, Subaru makes an excellent product. My Toyota spends far more time in the shop!

  • stackman1stackman1 Posts: 53

    Do I need an intervention? I have a 2002 OBS and I have st stump. I will insert a dropbox link. Not terribly thick - the stump that is....maybe I am. When I was changing my oil the last time I saw two grommets(?) about two feet from the front of the car hanging down. I assume they can be used for towing but should I risk it? I stopped by Home Depot and on the impulse picked up tow straps but I think they have loops on either end - not sure how they would even work. But is it just a real bad idea? The stump moves a bit when I push the top with my foot. So it might not take much but I don't want to leave part of my car in the driveway. I assume if I do it, is it appropriate to use one of the grommets in the front and put it in reverse.

    https://dropbox.com/s/bwgyz1wnnz15ag0/stump.jpg

  • stackman1stackman1 Posts: 53

    Just remembered the jack kit which I left on the side of a West Virginia highway had an eye bolt that may be the proper way to attach a tow strap. I bought a second hand jack but not another eye bolt. Maybe the best thing to do is try to rent a pick and got at it some more.....it sucks cuz I can tell it is just about to go - haha

  • grahampetersgrahampeters AustraliaPosts: 1,616

    @stackman1 said: Just remembered the jack kit which I left on the side of a West Virginia highway had an eye bolt that may be the proper way to attach a tow strap. I bought a second hand jack but not another eye bolt. Maybe the best thing to do is try to rent a pick and got at it some more.....it sucks cuz I can tell it is just about to go - haha

    G'day

    Preparation is the key. Dig around as much of the stump as possible, exposing side roots. If possible get a pruning saw and cut off side roots. Loop strap or rope around d lowest portion of root you can reach and secure to cassis of car. Take up slack in cable, place weighted bag or similar over cable to minimise whip effect when cable breaks. Ensure nobody is nearby as a broken cable is potentially lethal.

    Do not jerk cable. Pull gently and evenly. Be prepared to destroy clutch or transmission as loads can be very high. If you are not prepared for this cost, consider hiring professionasls .

    An alternative is to drill stump and dose with salt-petre to promote fungal degradation of the stump.

    Cheers

    Graham

  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,002
    edited April 23

    I'd keep digging and chopping. Or, since it looks like the house is masonry, maybe you could start a small charcoal fire at the base, dump an inch or so of dirt on the fire, and let it smolder for a week or so.

    Stump pulling gone wrong (youtube)

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  • stackman1stackman1 Posts: 53

    Hey Guys - thanks for the replies. I worried about ending up on Youtube so I returned my strap at Home Depot and picked up a pick axe. That way I can only hurt myself. If the moderator will indulge me I found this video on Youtube that maybe you might enjoy. Sorry if I am way off topic here but you can't beat the American Male when it comes to having stupid fun....

    https://youtube.com/watch?v=5UfRVV3RAVQ

  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,002

    I was expecting an American Graffiti moment 20 seconds in. :D

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  • busirisbusiris Posts: 3,490

    @Stever@Edmunds said: I was expecting an American Graffiti moment 20 seconds in. :D

    Too funny!!!

  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,524
    edited April 23

    @stackman1 said: it sucks cuz I can tell it is just about to go - haha

    I pulled a whole bunch of stumps similar to this one back in 2001 when we were first clearing our property. I used my '96 Outback. Fabulous creation, that Outback!

    I think I pulled 18-20 stumps around the size of the one you showed downward to about a quarter that size. I would dig around the stump with my pick axe to break up the smaller roots, dig under the core of the stem until I could wrap the chain around it, and POP! out it comes when I backed the car up. I had a nylon strap through one of the car's front recovery/tie down loops, and then attached that strap to a short length of heavy chain (which was wrapped around the stump core) on the end.

    If the stump has a little give, that's all you need. The weight of the car and momentum will do the rest for you.

    The following year, I used that poor car to tow my pickup, loaded with block, gravel, goods, trailer(s), or you name it(!), up the slippery driveway multiple times. Had it to 220,000 miles and it still left this world far too soon.

    2010 Subaru Forester, 2011 Ford Fiesta, 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup, 1974 Ford Pinto Wagon
  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 41,002

    I'd never do that Xwes.

    Okay, once with the Tercel for some Siberian pea bushes. B) It's a wonder we're all not on YouTube.

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  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,524

    Yeah, I'm a wild card. Did I mention that before I pulled the stumps with the Outback, I cut down all of those shrubs (old growth willow, mostly) with a bow saw? I lost count after the second set of 100.... Hahhah!

    But, I didn't end up pulling too many stumps w/ the car because it just took too long. In the end, I pulled the ones I had to pull in order to get up onto the property with vehicles, but left all the rest until I had a dozer up there to start shaping the land for the building site. My original plan was to pull them all with the backhoe that had dug the first rudimentary ramp through the roadside cut bank. Sadly, a hydraulic hose broke about 2/3 the way through the stump-pulling job, so that was that. :p

    2010 Subaru Forester, 2011 Ford Fiesta, 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup, 1974 Ford Pinto Wagon
  • stackman1stackman1 Posts: 53

    https://dropbox.com/s/q6x6hvdgjyekhfx/Stumped.jpg

    Couldn't risk it - bought a pick.

    Anyway I hope the board has some a/c experience. I have a 2002 OBS and when I went to use the a/c last summer it only worked for first 5 minutes or so - took it to dealer and they recharged but then told me the compressor was shot and I was looking at $1,000. So I decided it was time to start doing more or at least learning more. Got some good jack stands - changed my oil etc but since I am headed to Florida for the summer I need to figure this out. Can't pay that kind of money.

    Watched some videos and realized the first thing I need to do is buy a manifold gauge set. Should arrive this week. The system has a charge and the compressor clutch is engaged or at least spinning. But like I said it blows cold for the first few minutes only. From what I can tell if the pressure on the lines on either side of the compressor are the same it means the compressor probably is dead.....any thoughts?

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,116

    If the compressor clutch is engaged and the compressor is spinning and is quiet, I don't think that's the problem. There are lots of possibilities. You could have too little pressure or too much in the system, you could have a bad or clogged up expansion valve, or you could even have a problem in the HVAC ducting.

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  • stackman1stackman1 Posts: 53

    The system has a charge and the compressor clutch is engaged or at least spinning. But like I said it blows cold for the first few minutes only. It isn't real hot here yet on Long Island. When I turn on the a/c the vent thermometer takes it from 80 to 60 but then it fades back to 70 pretty quick. The high pressure line out of the compressor going into the condenser gets hot like I assume it should - at first - but after about 5 minutes it is just warm. The low pressure line going into the firewall is fairly cool but actually feels colder coming out???? Bad Evaporator?

    Then when I went under the car it appears like the boot on my axle arm is torn under the driver side and sprayed grease everywhere....beautiful. Don't know how much that will cost.

    And to top it off - when I was putting the guard back on top of my drive belts... the back plate(?) that takes the bolt that keeps my guard tight dropped into the engine area and can't find it. Black hole I guess.

    Great day - all in all. :)

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,116

    Okay, I have gone off into my cave to meditate on your problem and I have answers!

    My crystal ball tells me it is the INNER boot that has torn on the left side. What you need is a set of factory boots and a mechanic to do this disgusting job----here in California that will cost you $237 bucks.

    For the AC I have meditated further and a brilliant light appeared before my eyes---on Subarus of your vintage, it is not uncommon for the AC relay to go bad---just a guess, as the supernatural is always mysterious--but it's cheap and easy to fix.

    @stackman1 said: The system has a charge and the compressor clutch is engaged or at least spinning. But like I said it blows cold for the first few minutes only. It isn't real hot here yet on Long Island. When I turn on the a/c the vent thermometer takes it from 80 to 60 but then it fades back to 70 pretty quick. The high pressure line out of the compressor going into the condenser gets hot like I assume it should - at first - but after about 5 minutes it is just warm. The low pressure line going into the firewall is fairly cool but actually feels colder coming out???? Bad Evaporator?

    Then when I went under the car it appears like the boot on my axle arm is torn under the driver side and sprayed grease everywhere....beautiful. Don't know how much that will cost.

    And to top it off - when I was putting the guard back on top of my drive belts... the back plate(?) that takes the bolt that keeps my guard tight dropped into the engine area and can't find it. Black hole I guess.

    Great day - all in all. :)

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  • stackman1stackman1 Posts: 53

    I went and bought a set of Mountain Manifold gauges for $58. Recap - the a/c blows cold for five minutes but then goes back to room temperature. The Compressor clutch is engaged and spinning the whole time. Initially the line going from compresssor to condenser gets hot but soon - not so much. The lines going into the firewall and coming out feel cool but not ice cold; oddly coming out seems colder?!?
    Ok the gauges. I hooked them up and before I turned the car on the Low valve read ~65pi; High Side ~ 65psi. I ran the a/c. The High valve briefly spiked to 100psi but then settled back at 60 psi after 5 minutes. But The low side went from 65psi to negative 30psi! What does this mean to you? Was the dealer correct - does it sound like the compressor? The way I see it - the compressor is sucking in the refrigerant - enough to create a vacuum! - does that sound like a compressor issue? I know it also sounds like I am low on refrigerant but now I don't know what to think. This is the first time it had a gauge on it. Maybe the dealer never charged it and just tried to get me to replace the compressor sight unseen....but maybe he did and there is just leaks.....gonna get to the bottom of this somehow. Thanks Shifty

  • stackman1stackman1 Posts: 53

    Shifty - forgot to ask. Are the 'relays' those cartridge type fuses in the engine fuse compartment? I didn't want to pull too hard. Should they be pulled out or do you need a tool? If you get one out - do you just look for a broken filament band like on regular fuses? Thanks

  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,116

    No, the AC relay is a little box, I think marked "A", in the main fuse panel in the engine bay. I'm sorry I don't have your car in front of me so I can only give you general location. The actual identity of the relay should be in your owner's manual chart.

    @stackman1 said: Shifty - forgot to ask. Are the 'relays' those cartridge type fuses in the engine fuse compartment? I didn't want to pull too hard. Should they be pulled out or do you need a tool? If you get one out - do you just look for a broken filament band like on regular fuses? Thanks

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  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 8,524
    edited May 13

    Stackman, you cannot see into the relay like with fuses. You can test them, though. They have three prongs, and they should make a "click" sound when you supply power.

    2010 Subaru Forester, 2011 Ford Fiesta, 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup, 1974 Ford Pinto Wagon
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