Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Subaru Legacy/Outback Wagons Maintenance & Repair



  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 10,910
    Since we're on the topic of radios... anyone have an easy fix for this problem?

    I have a stock Panasonic tape deck in my '96 OBW, but it also has a second DIN that replaced the junk tray in the dash with a single disc CD player. The problem is that the CD player will not eject the disc when the unit is warm, such as after it has played a CD. It also does not like to accept a disc when it is warm, but you can usually poke it in fast enough that it takes it. I think it uses a friction drive / roller to actually move the disc in and out and something is slipping on the friction end so it is unable to overcome the resistance as it ejects. Anyone else had this problem? Is there any way to cheaply repair it? Currently, I use a set of tweezers to "eject" the discs, but they are not real disc-friendly.....
    2014 Audi Q7 TDI, 2008 and 2013 Subaru Forester(s), 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup
  • vowlesvowles Posts: 1
    hi ya'll

    i've been in and out of the subaru dealer and my guy for the last four weeks. i did a full carbon flush of the engine and fuel system and i must say it runs better. the check engine light is back on though and they are saying now that the coil needs to be done as that is what the mis-fire code indicates should be done. if it's not that it may be the valve guides, being off and the valves not properly closing.....anyone have any experience? i also had a head gasket job done recently in which they did the valves.

    thanks so much.

    stranded in Halifax with no $$$
  • 95legacy95legacy Posts: 26
    I have a 95 Legacy L. There are no head-rests for the second row passengers. It is very often that I have people in the second row. Call me Safety Susy but, I don't want anyone getting seriously hurt. I also want it to be relatively comfortable back there.

    Is there any way to mount headrests in the original seats? I was also looking at seats from a newer Suby (00-05). Does anyone know if they would fit? I'm trying to keep the original color. It's a nice light grey, unlike 97-99 (equipped w/2nd row hdrst) which seem to to be primarily Charcoal.

    Colby aka Picky Pete
  • francophilefrancophile Posts: 667
    From a bit of googling it appears as though 1995 was the first model year of the 1995-1999 body style. It is quite possible that a back seat from any of those years will fit your car. The next fun bit will be finding the color you want!

    Good luck,
  • 95legacy95legacy Posts: 26
    My 95 Legacy L (also a 5-speed) has been stalling. This just started happening today. It starts fine but, will quickly go out unless I constantly rev it. This also happens any time the rpms get down around 1000. Driving is jerky around 2-2500

    I'm in upstate NY so the temp is around 40f. It stalls even after the engine is warmed up.

    I was messing with the throttle earlier today. It didn't seem like it was enough to get anything out of wack. I thought maybe I had changed the idle setting though.

    Any ideas?

  • 95legacy95legacy Posts: 26
    You're right, it was the first year. Actually it seems like a forgotten year sometimes. Hard to find aftermarket parts.

    I am quite positive that the rear seat is the same in the 97-99 but, as I said before the leather is mostly the charcoal color and the velour that I have seen has been that kleenex box pattern.

  • ssteveksstevek Posts: 45
    50k sounds way too early for a clutch to fail. My '98 Outback started slipping around 95k, I've got '96 now. It doesn't happen all the time, which I find unusual. I haven't done anything about it so far because except for a few occasions when trying to accelerate quickly onto the highway it doesn't slip. I've heard from others on this site that 95k is not an unreasonable time for a clutch to start to fail, I've never had clutch shudder unless I erroneously engage it.
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 10,910
    I am sure your 95's seats are much like my '96. Other than the seat pattern change, there are not inserts for headrests on the 95 or 96. You could probably get a whole seat back off a '97-99, but then you run into the upholstery problem. Probably not worth pursuing until you solve the stalling problem! ;-D
    2014 Audi Q7 TDI, 2008 and 2013 Subaru Forester(s), 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup
  • slickdogslickdog Posts: 225
    I'm not sure this is the case for the Outback (maybe someone else here knows) because I haven't looked around inside mine closely enough to know for sure, but many vehicles have a temp sender for the gauge on the dash which is separate from the temp sensor which the ECM uses to make it's decisions. That's why I stated that a malfunctioning temperature sender (which is what I call the component that drives the dash temp gauge or idiot light) wouldn't necessarily be responsible for driveability issues.
  • 95legacy95legacy Posts: 26
    xwesx - you're right. In fact it's off to the mechanic tomorrow.

    To the members-

    I just want to ask everyone again for ideas as to what may be up with the stalling. To be honest, I figured someone would shoot back a reply right away. Do we not have a whole lot of Subaru people on this forum?

    I don't know if we are using these forums to their potential. I only say that because I see other questions without replies. Well, you can bet I'll come back with an answer to this problem after we see the Doc.

  • phil9phil9 Posts: 1
    I'm original owner of '99 outback and have had hesitation problems since new. Hesitation occurs during accleration until speed is reached but not always.Dealer has replaced plugs,wires.ECM module twice,AF sensor,Oxygen sensor,adjust throttle body.Have 68,000 miles now and same hesitation all along.Codes never show any problems.Been a good auto except for this. Dealer is baffled.Been to four dealers over the years.
  • james16james16 Posts: 1
    I have had a roof leak for some time now in my 2002 Outback Limited, seems to be coming in where the rear seatbelt goes into the headliner. Wondering if anyone else has encountered this problem and can give some advice on how to fix myself as I now have the car out of the country and is not covered by warranty.

    At a minimum, easiest way to get the headliner off? Best way to troubleshoot for a leak from that area?

  • stymiedstymied Posts: 3
    I just got a 2000 Outback and according to the manual, the cigarette lighter isn't supposed to be used for anything but the actual cigarette lighter. No other "plug in type" accessories can be hooked up to it. "Doing so may cause a short circuit and overheating, resulting in fire"
    The manual states that I would have to get an optional accessory power socket installed in order to, for example, charge my cell phone.
    My question I REALLY need to get the accessory power socket installed, or can I just plug my phone into the cigarette lighter slot instead?
  • amsbearamsbear Posts: 147
    My understanding is that once you use another "non-lighter" accessory in the lighter socket, you can't go back to using the lighter in there. The lighter socket may no longer be able to eject the lighter plug when it heats up and therefore you have a fire hazard.

    98 OBW Ltd
  • 95legacy95legacy Posts: 26
    You may have a leak around the weather stripping for the door.

    Do you Have a roof rack? Those are just more holes in the body, and of course more chances for leaks.

    I don't really know how to get the headliner off though. I think if you take the plastic pillar covers off, you will find some way to remove it.

  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 10,910
    Another individual had roof leak problems and the water emerged at the same location you describe. I think his vehicle was an '01 or '02 Forester and the problem was due to a faulty design / seal on the water rails for the sunroof. He posted a fair number of photos detailing the problem and the fix. Perhaps a search would help? I know that some of the folks here should be able to remember the thread, but I think it was "Subaru Crew - Problems / Solutions" maybe sometime between November and January.... ?
    2014 Audi Q7 TDI, 2008 and 2013 Subaru Forester(s), 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup
  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 10,910
    I did not respond re: stalling because nothing came to mind right away as a likely cause. The only problems I have had that have affected the liklihood of the vehicle stalling is a mass airflow sensor (MAS) issue, and then last summer when I had a bad knock sensor coupled with bad oxygen and timing sensors.

    But, it could also be due to spark, fuel, or air supplies; independent of the sensors. Same with the hesitation problems for the '99 L mentioned in another post. For that individual, an ECU flash might help the car to remediate the problem?
    2014 Audi Q7 TDI, 2008 and 2013 Subaru Forester(s), 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup
  • 95legacy95legacy Posts: 26
    Allright I'm a major dunce. I went down the street to our neighborhood mechanic and he quickly solved the problem.

    I had a vaccuum line that got disconnected...SOMEHOW. Yeah, that couldn't have been because of me. OOops. The airflow was off hence the roughness and stalling under 3000 rpm.

    If you don't know what/where a vaccuum line is I will describe it. The idea (correct me if I'm wrong)is that the engine creates a vaccuum inside which sucks in unburnt fuel. Without the suction you don't really get a flow of fuel.

    The vaccuum line comes in from the air intake, the big 3" diameter black hose usually on the left side of the engine compartment (95-99 at least). The vaccuum line itself is a 1 inch diameter rubber hose that connects to the underside of the air intake hose. If the vaccuum line becomes separated from the intake you lose the suction as I did.

    Feel free to ask if you have Q's. I hope I have A's

  • goosegoggoosegog Posts: 206
    Stymied, there was a discussion about this a few years ago and my record of that is not immediately available. But I recall that based on info from Subaru it is OK to use such a device in the lighter socket and they changed the manual for later years to reflect this. I will try to find this info for you.

    Don't forget that the 2000-2004 OB wagon has an accessory socket in the back left cubby. All you need is a 12V extension lead.
  • www3www3 Posts: 4
    hi Folks,

    My 2005 2.5i Outback is all over the road at highway speed. Is it the Potenzas?

    Also , my cruise control causes pulsing on downhills.

    How can I fix these issues? The handling one is about to drive me bananas!


  • occkingoccking Posts: 346
    I have exactly the same problem on my 2.5i ltd with cruise control. Onlyl when going down hill. Keeps kicking in and out. Slightly but noticeable. No problem on level ground or up inclines.

    I haven't had any problem with OEM tires. Got close to 8000 miles now and not even three months old. They seem to be wearing a bit & I cannot imagine these tires lasting much over 35k miles.

    How are you doing on gas mileage? To date I am averaging a hair under25 mpg since day one. Finally getting use to the abnormally low center arm rest but the seats themselves are not the most comfortable ones I have ever had.
  • www3www3 Posts: 4
    26 MPG since day one (7700 miles) and more like 28-29 on highway

    I got the armrest extender-highly recommended.
  • francophilefrancophile Posts: 667
    Re "all over the road": Have the dealer do a full front AND rear alignment on the car. And don't let them charge you! They should give it to you under warranty.

  • 95legacy95legacy Posts: 26
    What kind of hills are you guys traveling on? Backroad with steep grade or highways with very slight grade?

    You really shouldn't use the CC on any steep grade or, in rain as we all know.

    I would wonder if the Downhill-Assist and cruise control are, for some reason, in conflict with each other.

  • www3www3 Posts: 4

    thanks for your reply. Called dealer and spoke to a different service rep-- "oh yeas, they need that since they're not aligned off the truck, and one front and rear alignment is covered under warranty."

    So why didn't the other service rep mention this when I asked him point blank about it two months ago?

    The beauty of the Intertet, vol. 487,686. Owners, watch your service reps!


  • www3www3 Posts: 4

    nothing steep yet, just minor hills.

    Pulsing is not critical issue, just a minor not to the other standards of the car so far.

    Side note-These cars seem to be so well built and well-engineered that you find yourself expecting perfection!

    Tell me more about downhill assist please.

  • clearmudclearmud Posts: 1
    I have an 95 Legacy with about 80k on it.It eats through brake pads about every 3-5 months.The strange thing is it tends to only wear down the back left break pad. Even better I have had to replace the back left tire three times. The car vibrates when in drive, both when sitting at a stop sign or going 70 on the highway. Finally, when I turn left it makes either a squeaking noise or a slight rubbing noise. The mechanics I've been to are all dumb(founded), or full of crap; seeing me, a college student, as an easy target.
  • stymiedstymied Posts: 3
    Thank you amsbear and goosegog I appreciate your input. I think I'll invest in the extension for my laptop. Also, I continued searching and found the following discussion from a few years ago on this as well, just FYI:

    Call me obsessive but after I drove our family's new 2001 Outback Limited Wagon home last week and everyone else was tucked into bed, I read the owner's manual. Surprised was I to read that the power outlet located at the bottom of the dashboard is not to be used for *any* electrical accessory other than the official Subaru cigarette lighter else there is a risk of fire! So I'm wondering where am I supposed to plug in a cell phone (more truthfully my wife is wondering since she gets to drive the new addition)? Should I get a *really* long cord to connect to the power point in the cargo area? Since the wagon is a 5MT, the Subaru option for an additional 12V outlet in the center console doesn't apply.

    I figure, the owner's manual must be wrong, I'm walking through parking lots and seeing Outbacks with cell phone cords in lighter sockets all over the place. So I send an e-mail to the General Inquiries section of the SoA website.

    Here's the response:

    Yes, there is a difference between the power outlet located at the bottom of
    the dashboard and the one in the cargo area. The one in the dashboard was
    designed for a cigarette lighter, and was designed for a short term
    connection. With the long term use of a cell phone in this outlet, there is
    a concern of a potential problem with the internal heating elements becoming
    too hot. The outlet in the cargo area was designed for use with products
    other than a cigarette lighter.

    Therefore, there is no error in the owner's manual pertaining to these

    A colleague of mine did offer one suggestion for using your cell phone in
    your vehicle. She advised that you could fully charge your phone (at home
    if convenient), and only use the outlet in the cargo area if necessary or in
    the case of an emergency.

    I hope that this further information is helpful, and please feel free to
    contact us again if you need future assistance. Best wishes!!

    John J. Mergen
    Subaru of America, Inc.

    I'm a bit skeptical of the response (heating elements in the socket?!). Does anyone know if the facts are as stated above?


    There are no heating elements in the typical lighter socket. The heating elements are in the lighter itself.

    It could be that the wiring and/or fuse used for the lighter socket is designed for short, bursty use however. I personally can't imagine how a cell phone charging unit would overload a lighter circuit; they don't take much juice. But other stuff certainly might, so Subaru may be erring on the side of caution.


    I've had our cell phone plugged in there several times - including one time just to charge it on a trip home.

    I think we're probably safe with plugging in most cell phones or radar detectors since they typically don't suck a lot of juice (or heat up the wires). I'd probably stay away from powering one of those air compressors or a tv with that power outlet. I have neither of those things, so I won't worry.

    I'm also no engineer - so I could be wrong on this.

    Patti or Darlene: should we worry about this?

    I have a 2000 Outback 5spd and have routinely used the outlet up front to charge my cell phone with no problem. I can not see how it would be dangerous, as it is not drawing a lot of electricity. Also, the typical portable handsfree kit for cell phones gets hooked up to the cigarette lighter, so I can't see how it is wrong to use.

    As I anticipated, other people are using the dashboard socket for cell phones without incident. It's likely that francophile's comments are closer to the truth than the response offered by the customer service rep at SoA. Perhaps the lighter socket in the dashboard has a higher amperage slow blow fuse which is different than the fuse for any other 12V power outlets in the car. It would be nice to get a definitive answer on ths subject from a more knowledgeable SoA representative. Any ideas on how I might pursue that?

    As for the power outlet, I have a hands-free kit for my Nokia phone, which is ALWAYS plugged in when I'm driving. It has not been a problem for the phone or my Forester.

    I actually have a cell phone cradle and plug mine in at all time, every single time I drive, for over a year now. Never had a problem.

    However, I also have a notebook PC with a car charger and it works fine until I start the car. The ignition interferes with the charger some how, and I've had the notebook crash. Nothing a good 3 finger salute can't fix!
  • bat1161bat1161 Posts: 1,784
    I have the 2000 OBW as well and I have been using the cigarette lighter for just about anything from the get go. The only thing I have been using for about a year and a half now is a cigarette lighter surge protecter from Radio Shack. It can handle up to 3 accessories in it, and I have had no problems what so ever.

  • hypovhypov Posts: 3,068
    There is some truth to SoA's response, discounting the fact that there isn't any heating element/filament in the socket. However, if you do have the cigarette lighter [where the element/filament is], DO NOT plug that into the socket if it has been used for other than the cigarette ligher. Get a dummy plug if you need to cover it.
    My experience; the cigartte lighter can fail to pop-up when it is fully heated or it will literally eject out of the socket and be at places you won't want it to be with the element glowing redhot. Both scenario has occured with my '98 OB.

Sign In or Register to comment.