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Subaru Legacy/Outback



  • shteveyshtevey Posts: 4
    Brian - Thanks a whole bunch, I couldn't find it in the book as I didn't know what I was looking for and had mis-diagnosed the cause. Thanks again.
  • nygregnygreg Posts: 1,936
    Thanks for the input(s). The car looks to good for me to think that the errant stones will eventually make their "marks". Yes, I know Juice - it gives it character. Just not for a while please. By the way, that stone did come off the car in front of me with good velocity. But the "chip" is really small. Touchup and deflector!

  • Hi All:
    We have 2100 miles on the Bean so thought I would check in. Everything great so far, with the exception of the squeeking brakes, and they only do that backing out of the garage. Never hear them again during the rest of the day. I also am noticing the slight surge of the engine (maybe 25 to 50 rpms) when I am sitting in drive with foot on the brake. I am thinking this may be the A/C compressor cycling on and increasing demand on engine but that's just a guess.

    The problem I solved is with the day/night mirror interfering with the sun shade. The mirror not only articulates on a ball but the whole mirror moves up and down. Move it down a half inch and viola, Problem solved. That info might be in the manual but I just discovered it by accident while cleaning the inside of the windshield.

    As I said earlier we are quite pleased with the car overall. After 2k miles I am beginning to really appreciate the H6. When I test drove it I was not that impressed with the difference between the H4 and H6 but after daily driving for three weeks I am becoming more and more sold on the 6.

    Oh one other thing that might be of interest. Our Costco here in Astoria, Or. sells a wax/cleaner by the name of Zymol ( made in Germany) which I have used and am very imressed with the way it applies and buffs off (and it smells good to :-) Can't vouch for the absolute long term quality of the stuff but it may compare favorably to Klasse and the price is right ($15 for two 16oz bottles)

    My dealer assured me today the there is absolutely no recall planned for the Firestone tires on the OB. The tire has nothing to do with the Wilderness truck tire. Subaru required a RWL and the tire was black. So unfortunately Firestone picked "wilderness" for the RWL word. They could have picked "X-track zippity doo" and no one would have given it a thought.

    So for now I would rate it as one sweet machine. Only nine years and 11 months to go and it beats the Accord wagon.

  • Wasn't Kurt Cobaine fom Astoria? Nice town... stopped in a couple of years ago on the way up the coast on HWY1.

  • I came here in the Coast Guard in 77 and retired in 81. I liked the area so well I never left and since I have 4 grandkids here I probably never will.

    I think Kurt Cobaine was from Seattle. All I can remember is what was in the papers. Seem to remember he was a doper who snuffed himself. Seems that trail often leads to the same destination.

  • canadianclcanadiancl Posts: 1,078
    has a nice bridge. Actually the whole area all the way down the coast is beautiful. We used to drive down there every year until the Canadian $ started to depreciate faster than a Chevy Malibu in a rental fleet.
  • I'm looking at replacing my beloved Honda CRX (because people keep hitting me in it) with a wagon. I'm looking at Saturn wagon, Subaru Outbacks (last couple of years models) and older Volvos (way older - can't afford anything new).

    I'm wondering: how the Saturns handle in snow/rain, etc., if anyone out there has experience in both, and thoughts on relative merits between these and old volvos with high mileage. I'm most concerned about safety, then handling in inclement weather, and then mileage.

  • jdlanganjdlangan Posts: 48
    I can tell you that my OB was rear ended on the interstate her and came away with relatively minor damage - the other two cars involved were towed. Since my kids were in the back seat at the time I was very thankful for how solid the car felt on impact. As for snow, we had our share of it this winter in Upstate NY and the OB never let me down. My best friend has a Saturn coupe, and when she drives in deep snow she feels she needs to put the chains on - but then she's a Nevada girl so I'm not sure how much of that is just lask of snow driving experience. My other car is a Ford Explorer, and I can honestly say that the OB is every bit as good in snow, and of course is much more stable on the twists and turns in all weather!
  • grahampetersgrahampeters AustraliaPosts: 1,783

    As noted previously, Subarus are solid. I was rear ended for the second time this weekend with no damage to the Outback and kids fine in rear seats (one got a tiny scrape from the harness and the other's bear took a nose dive).

    Outbacks are strange; they are not a car which immediately appeals but get better and better the longer you own them, particularly after driving in marginal conditions. The worse the road, the better the experience. I continue to be amazed at just how good mine is.

    Try hiring one for a week and see what you think.


  • dle01dle01 Posts: 37
    I have just discovered this list, and have spent the last few days reading over some of the previous entries. For the most part, it appears that people are generally happy with their Subaru, and have had better than average reliability.

    I had a very unfortunate experience with my 1995 Legacy wagon (L wagon, 5speed, AWD, ABS), and I thought that I would post it to see if anyone else has had similar trouble. At 91,000 miles I took it into the dealer for the specified 90k service. I had been noticing a rattling / grinding noise whenever the car was in gear, or in neutral when the clutch was engaged (out). This noise had gotten worse over the course of several thousand miles, to the point that people who rode in the car were commenting on it. I asked the dealer to look into this noise, and advise me whether it was serious and how much it would cost to correct it.

    Well, to make a long story short it turned out to be the transmission. The formal diagnosis was that there were one or more internal bearings in the transmission that had failed. This was not good news. The dealer quoted me $6000 for a new transmission or $3500 for a rebuild one. When pressed, they said that I could get a used transmission (from a wreck) installed for $1000. I took the car for a second opinion at a "reputable" transmission shop and they quoted me $2000 to repair my transmission.

    I bought the Subaru initially because of the promise of great reliability. I fully intended to keep this car another 5 years and run it up to 200k miles. I have previously owned both a Chevy and a Ford, and the Subaru was much more reliable (fewer trips to the dealer) than either of the two domestics. Regrettably, this experience really soured me on the car. Rather than put $2000 into it, I traded it. The dealer put a used transmission into it and wholesaled the car. I'm sure it now lives in a land far away.

    Has anyone out there heard of such a premature transmission failure? I find this kind of failure to be completely unacceptable for any car, even at 91k miles. I will admit that I drove the car hard, used it to haul stuff that probably was better left to trucks, and that the last 30k miles was mostly in town driving. But these things ought to be able to take it without loosing transmissions.

    I will be interested to hear of any perspectives or other stories.
  • hello all!

    I just did an oil change on the OB wagon this weekend, and i found that the sheild that covers the bottom of the engine bay was cracked and, quite honestly, not worth putting back on after the oil change. My question, however, is this - how important is this shield? What is its purpose? TIA.
  • nygregnygreg Posts: 1,936
    Sorry to hear about your accident. Hope all is well. I guess people like the OB so much they want to get a closer look. ;)

    Subyaudidue - My thinking on the shield is this: Why would Subaru pay to have that part there if they didn't need it? It is probably there to keep the engine dry and possibly wind noise. Just my 2 pennies.

    To all: Just purchased some parts from (hood deflector, oil filter, etc). Good prices, nice site. Lets see when they arrive. Thanks all for the tip.

  • nygregnygreg Posts: 1,936
    Filled up my OB for the first time. First tank = 23 mpg on Dealer fuel (87). 100 miles after filling it up the gas gauge just moved off full. :)

  • peterson10peterson10 Posts: 116
    David (is that your REAL name?),
    The transmission on my 92 Legacy siezed up one bitterly cold day in 93 (yup, only about 10k miles on it). The dealer I was using at the time was slow to accomodate me, but eventually came around when I got vocal on the sales floor (always a motivator). Anyway, the problem I had was allegedly "unique". Subaru's investigation identified some minor glitch in the design of the rear seals which they ultimately corrected with a nationwide recall. As for my own car, SOA shipped a new transmission overnight (or so my dealer said), and I was back on the road within ten days. Since then, not a problem (excepting a blown ignition module, rattling heat shields, and the like). My point? Well, maybe yours was another "unique" case. I really fumed for a while with mine and bad-mouthed Subaru for the next year, but when it was time to trade in the ever-problematic Honda Civic, my research led me straight back to Subaru. My wife and I are likely to sell our trusted (but not rusted) Legacy in the next week or two, and will unquestionably replace it with another Sube: just not sure which one....Forester L....RS....WRX (nah, can't afford the tickets).

  • david35david35 Posts: 12
    I haven't been on this board in about 8 months but now I am back for some advice.

    I have a 2000OB and have just reached the 30,000mi mark. The air filter wasn't available at the local parts store. The employee said it was only available at the dealer. 1) any recommendations on where to get a factory filter- Tacoma Subaru looks like they are off line these days. In the past there was some gal that was mentioned in this chat room several times before (Qsubaru??). 2) Anyone with a K&N filter that has an opinion.? Is it worth it? Where do I get one? 3) Is there a Chilton's-type manual for 2000OB? Where can I get one?

  • aren't they in WA?

  • nygregnygreg Posts: 1,936
    Yes. Just ordered some stuff today. Good prices and nice site (as mentioned in my earlier note). Example: diff protector; dealer 1 = $82, dealer 2 = $70, subaruparts = $54.56. They are in WA.

  • david35david35 Posts: 12
    I haven't been on this board in about 8 months but now I am back for some advice.

    I have a 2000OB and have just reached the 30,000mi mark. The air filter wasn't available at the local parts store. The employee said it was only available at the dealer. 1) any recommendations on where to get a factory filter- Tacoma Subaru looks like they are off line these days. In the past there was some gal that was mentioned in this chat room several times before (Qsubaru??). 2) Anyone with a K&N filter that has an opinion.? Is it worth it? Where do I get one? 3) Is there a Chilton's-type manual for 2000OB? Where can I get one?

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    QSubaru, sadly, went out of business. They had the best prices, so I really miss them.

    That engine undercover is there to keep the engine bay dry and clean. It's also there to make oil changes a pain in the back! ;-)

    David: 91k is a lot of miles, and while trannies usually last a lot longer, you did say you worked it pretty hard. My neighbor sells carpets and always carries a full load in his minivans, and he's never had one past 88k miles (out of 3 so far).

    Ramona: have you looked at the new Legacy L? You can get a new one for around $19k, and they come with a 5 year powertrain warranty. They still have ABS and AWD, plus all the power stuff, and represent a good value, if you ask me.

    Also, the new Impreza TS wagon is a little smaller but compares favorably to the Saturn wagon, especially in colder climates.

  • mikezakmikezak Posts: 95
    This may sound trivial, but is there anyway to add some 'gizmo' to the Dome Light of my 01 OBW so that it slightly dims when it goes off (ala the 01 Forester, and the 02 OBW). If so what would I have to do, and what skill level is needed to complete?

  • francophilefrancophile Posts: 667
    Re the bad transmission noise: that sounds exactly like an input bearing. The input shaft has a bearing which spins whenever the clutch is engaged. Some cars have one that can be pulled out from the front, others have to have the entire gearbox disassembled in order to get them out. Either way it is not a $6K job, neither is it all that unusual to have a bearing fail somewhere on a vehicle at 90K miles.

    Re the choice among Subie/Saturn/Volvo: Saturns seem to garner the same kind of owner loyalty that Subies do, so I won't speak poorly of them here - although I *will* *strongly* recommend a Subie over a Saturn. Volvos, and Swedish cars in general in my experience, have far and away the highest repair bills of any cars in America; prices for parts are an absolute outrage. (I guess someone has to pay for all that socialism and all those 8-week vacations.)

  • mtnshoppermtnshopper Posts: 58
    After reading about the rock chips, I think I want some protection on the front of my car before I take off on a road trip. Seems like most people are using the acrylic hood deflector. What are the opinions about the acrylic hood deflector vs the vinyl front end hood cover? Do they both provide the same amount of protection? Is there a reason one might be preferred over the other? Dealer charges $112.00 for acrylic hood deflector and installation. Does the vinyl hood cover slip on easily over the hood?
    Thanks, Becky
  • goosegoggoosegog Posts: 206
    Mikezak - Dimming dome light:
    A dimmer is a simple device and small, I'm sure one could be cobbled together, try checking the electronics magazines or search the web. But you would have to rewire the switch(es) because right now they probably just connect and disconnect the ground to the light. What you want to do is send a signal to the dimmer, which would need 12V and ground on it all the time, and this is more complicated. Not worth the trouble in my opinion.

    Subiaudidude - engine shield:
    As someone said it does keep the engine bay cleaner but I suspect the main reason is is to aid airflow under the car and improve fuel economy. This also improves cashflow into Subaru's coffers, which clean engine bays don't.

    Re the hood deflector:
    I haven't got one because with my previous cars I've never experienced paint chipping off the hood. But I do have some tough stick-on plastic headlamp/foglamp protectors that came from an outfit in Texas. They are hard to fit but once on are invisible. The company also makes hood protector sheets. But I'm damned if I can remember their name at the moment. They do have a web site and if you go back in this list to about July/Aug/Sep of 2000 or so you'll find references to them, 'cos that's where I heard about them and I bought mine in September.
  • nygregnygreg Posts: 1,936
    Just went through the same decision for my new OB. Decided on the acrylic hood deflector. I had the vinyl on my Mustang (sorry Kate). You needed to remove it when washing the hood, had to be careful it was tight enough not to rub the paint and can discolor the paint. Although the acrylic only protects the hood (it leaves the bumper to fend for itself), it is the right balance for ease of maintenance and protection for me. However, I would also appreciate feedback from those who have them. I just ordered mine from which gave me the best price by far - $50. It is easy to install or take it to the dealer (~$20). Also got the diff protector, wheel locks and an oil filter. Should arrive soon.

  • StoneGuard makes the stick-on stuff. They have kits for Soobs too.


  • evilizardevilizard Posts: 195
    >Subyaudidue - My thinking on the shield is this: >Why would Subaru pay to have that part there if >they didn't need it? It is probably there to >keep the engine dry and possibly wind noise. >Just my 2 pennies.

    Speaking with a salesman back in 2000 he told me that the undergaurd was part of the engine redesign. They switch from a DOHC to a SOHC in order to get more torque in the low end of the power band. In additon they put all that plastic crap on top of the engine to funnel in air (the ultimate poor mans turbo). The purpose of the bottom gaurds is to reduce the low pressue pull that would suck air down the engine bay into the bottom of the car. In this way they build more air pressure going into the engine air scoop.
    I don't know how much difference it makes but I would be inclined to leave it on. If its cracked I wouldn't bother fixing it with more than slapping on some duct tape.

    Now what I want to know is this.
    I just got a 2001 VDC. On top of the engine is a big old sheet of plastic which more or less prevents you from accessing any of the components (alternator, PCV valve, ECM module, throttle etc). Then on the sides of the engine (where you would access the spark plugs on the old 2.5L) they have some stamped sheet metal shielding. I am wondering what the deal is on this? Dirt protection (nothing is going to HIT those compenents inside the engine bay)? To discourage you from attempting your own repairs? An excuse to charge more for a repair (all that time taking covers on and off)?

    Actually I noticed this same phenomeon (plastic covers preventing you from getting at the juicy parts and accessories on the engine) on a Passat and a Volvo V70. the passat had it the worst. EVERYTHING was covered up except for fluid ports and air filter box. I could see in this extreme that it might make fluid maintenance easier for the mechanically challanged but the subies cover doesn't hide many other interesting parts.

    Any ideas?
  • nygregnygreg Posts: 1,936
    why would a brand new BB have a warped rotor? The only reasons I can come up with are: 1) someone beat on the car. Not likely since it only had 15 miles on it and was parked in the dealer's holding lot. 2) The wheels were over-torqued. or 3) The rotor was swapped by a dealer who needed a new rotor. Anyway, just wondering if anyone had a similar experience or any input.

  • nygregnygreg Posts: 1,936
    stupid spell checker
  • subearusubearu Posts: 3,613
    I have the hood deflector on our '00 OB. It was easy to install. The included instructions weren't the greatest, but it's easy to figure out.

  • hammersleyhammersley Posts: 684
    And forgive the "non-PC" reference to the vinyl cover... :)

    I've never had a vinyl cover, partially because of the trouble they can cause the paint underneath... buffeting at high speeds can rub & scratch the paint. I also understand that moisture hiding underneath is a problem. Sounds like the plastic deflector is a lot less labor-intensive to own & does about the same job. IMHO.

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