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Subaru Crew Problems & Solutions



  • subaru_teamsubaru_team Posts: 1,676
    Hi. I'm glad you were such a good help to your Mom! I don't have much experience with remote starters. We (SOA) cannot recommend them. I've read some negative things about them from other manuf. so I'd suggest she really think about it before getting one installed.

  • I SOOOOOOOO KNEW it was the radio!
  • p0926p0926 Posts: 4,423
    Louis- I've heard of one other instance where the fuel door froze and wouldn't open without prying. The design could probably be improved but I seriously doubt that Subaru will issue a TSB for it.

    I don't know much about remote starters other than that they're popular in places like Wyoming and Montana. I doubt one would void the warranty but I too have heard a story or two about cars starting all by themselves in the middle of the night. I guess you need to do some more research/talk to people who've had them installed. (FYI: a quick search of Edmunds revealed 9 topics on the subject).

    -Frank P.
  • 759397759397 Posts: 79
    I had the same problem last week on my 2000 OB. Went to the gas station and the door wouldn't open. Since it was snowing the past week here in MA at the time I figured it was iced up.....banged on it with a gloved hand and eventually got it to pop. It happened again a couple days later.

    That is the only "issue" I have had with mine in the 6mos I have owned the car.

    Hey it could be worse, my 1997 Jetta's doors used to freeze closed. I remember one time I had to enter the car through the trunk in Boston......try explaining that to the cops. "Really officer I have the key and it is my car....if I get in I will show you".

    If it wasn't the whole door it was the locks in the VW.....loved that car but love the OB more now...what a snow hog.
  • bluesubiebluesubie Posts: 3,497
    I wish NJ had the zero deductible for windshields. NJ insurance is a whole 'nother topic. My wife paid $700 on the OB LTD.

  • subkidsubkid Posts: 94
    fuel door would freeze if there was some melting/wet snow before and water got into the gas cap area. The "hole" has a flat bottom, so that water wouldn't leak out. Bad design? I think because a Subie is supposed to be a winter friendly car. It's difficult to just pry it out, because somebody or something has to hold a handle pulling the pin.

    Remote starters - if that's an auto, it's piece of cake (at least in Canada - most of people have it). Manual requires more work and changing of driving habits - I don't think it's worth it. Cars starting in the middle of the night - mostly urban legends :)), unless special type of starter is put in - there are starters reacting to a temperature of the engine, so it would start itself when temperature reaches about -15 and keep running until the engine warms up a little - enough to keep oil floating. Used in cold climate where electrical plugs aren't readily available.

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Cool Cheryl, please keep us updated, but this is very encouraging. Maybe Santa helped out too? :o)

    Remote starters would have to splice into the electronics, and look at what happened to Cheryl. I would stay at a minimum stick to a very reputable installer and ask for several references, for customers that have had it for more than a year at least.

    Even then you run a certain risk.

    Be a gentleman and run out and start it for her! :o)

    Keep the vehicle clean and waxed, twice a year for the wax. Slippery, clean surfaces make it harder for ice to stick to.

    Same with your wheels, was them too, to keep ice and slush from sticking and throwing your wheels off balance. This is for every car, BTW.

  • Juice (or any of the other Crew members),
    Is anyone headed to the DC Auto Expo next week?
  • rshollandrsholland Posts: 19,788
    Probably the 26th. Anybody want to hook up?

    FWIW, the DC show is usually not that great. It's really the last of last year's shows, rather than being the first of the new year's shows. Still I go every year.

  • otis123otis123 Posts: 433
    I put a remote starter in my 92 Camry in 1995 - never a problem - sold the car in 2001 (w/ 161K miles) for an LLBean with a remote starter (installed by my Subaru dealer at delivery) - no problems [knock on plastic wood].

    Also, have had one in my 96 Accord (112K miles) since late 1995 (at delivery) - no problems. I live in northern NYC suburbs. Would never buy a car without it. 1. The car's engine is brought up to operating temperature (better for engine) 2. The cabin is brought up/down to room temperature - cool in summer and warm in winter (better for driver).

    I use it every morning - 2 to 5 minutes before heading out. Can't beat it in the summer!

    2 recommendations....
    1. Have the dealer do it.
    2. Make sure it has the advanced range . I have to be close to the Honda - 200 feet, but the LLBean reaches up to 2000 feet. I walk out of a megamall, push the button, and the car is warmed up by the time I find it - also, helps find it in the night - it turns the lights on for safety.

    None have ever started by themselves - wasn't there an old TV show with a talking car? - although, as mentioned, the Camry remote starter was supposed to start at -15F - but never experienced that temperature in the garage.

    A no-brainer in my opinion...

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Wife actually invited me to go, which is shocking. She wants to take the kids, though. That'll be an experience! I may talk her into leaving the younger one at home, and taking just the 4 year old.

    I'll suggest the 26th and see what she says.

    One nice thing - you can usually get inside the cars that were roped off at the NY show in April.

  • I've self diagnosed my 03 outback with 11k miles with piston slap(based on some reading of this site)-When cold sounds like a lawn-mower until it gets warmed up- What is the official Subaru repair work on this
  • I would do that except I live 120 miles away from her :)

    Thanks for all the advice/opinions on remote starters. My mom had one installed in her last car ( 97 escort), and she loved it. A couple times the car would turn over and not start but otherwise it was fine. I told her about SOA not recommending them but she expects to get a warranty with the remote starter just in case something happens. If there are problems, she will have it taken out. The only problem is she is getting it installed near where I live, and she lives 120 miles away. We'll see how everything turns out. It will be installed on Tuesday. Thanks again Patti and others for the advice.
  • c_hunterc_hunter Posts: 4,487
    If it's true piston slap, then it's normal and no repair is required.

    Some questions: does it only happen in cold weather? What's your ambient temp? What oil are you using?

    Another common source of slapping on cold engines is the timing belt hitting the cover. I've had this happen on non-Subaru vehicles and other people have experienced it on Subarus. It can be fixed just by tightening up the timing belt on cars without a tensioner, or replacing the tensioner if it's faulty. It also may be a normal characteristic in cold weather, depending on the tensioner design.

  • Craig, thanks,

    I've an appointment with the dealer on Mon just to make sure.

    I've only noticed it in cold weather-outside temp per the car therm here in NJ is high 20's/ low 30's. Got in in Oct so this is my first winter with it.

    I'm not sure what oil was put in by the dealer at my last oil change

  • c_hunterc_hunter Posts: 4,487
    Have you checked the oil level? Make sure it's OK.

  • kenskens Posts: 5,869
    Piston slap has a metallic quality to it -- a very sharp and hard knocking sound. I'm guessing it would be slightly different from a loose t-belt.

  • lucien2lucien2 Posts: 2,984
    No heat coming home from Mom's house just now. Then the temp guage went through the roof. I pulled over. Coolant is cool but the overflow reservoir is empty. And making gurgle sounds. And there is coolant splatter all around it. And the thermostat is only 6 months old.

    76,0000 miles on a Phase I EJ25(cue JAWS theme). I'm going to go add some filtered water to it and see what happens....

    um, dumb question: How do I know when to stop adding liquid? It took quite a bit into the radiator but it will take more if I go back out there. I wonder if it didn't somehow ralf its coolant.
  • lark6lark6 Posts: 2,565
    Add liquid until radiator is full. Run car briefly. Check again. Check for leaks under car and around head gaskets. Make service appointment pronto.

    Good luck,
  • lucien2lucien2 Posts: 2,984
    And this from the Mid-A boards overe "there:"

    "headgaskets... how do I know? been there...

    it's not a stuck thermostat, I was told that, as were many others. I went into denial when people told me it was the headgaskets. Just suck it up and accept it... sorry man. What happens is air travels from inside the cylinder thru the leak on the headgasket, out into the coolant passage. this pressurizes the coolant, forcing it out of the block. it sends it into the over flow tank, and then sprays it out of the overflow tank all over the engine bay. this happened to me about once every two months at first, then happened about once a month, then once a week, then everytime I drove the car."
  • hypovhypov Posts: 3,068
    looks like you may be pushed off the fence prematurely.

  • kenskens Posts: 5,869
    I'm afraid it's what you think. IIRC, Colin also experienced a similar thermostat reading and a loss of coolant.

    Sorry to hear that, dude.

    Is that WRX wagon still available for cheap?

  • lucien2lucien2 Posts: 2,984
    *not yet!*

    yea they are Ken, but Fitz also cut the FXT pricing to $23,373. That's at the outer limit of my budget, but.....

    a) better driveline
    b) more space

    I think that Cobb bar kit and maybe STi springs, and good tires will go a long way to helping the XT handle very well. Maybe 17" SDRs in the Spring when I have some more cash.

    I don't know. I am going to wait for the Leg debut and find out $$ and on-sale date before I do anything. This fence hurts!
  • hypovhypov Posts: 3,068
    Just don't sit on the barbwire ;-)

  • lucien2lucien2 Posts: 2,984
    When I started the Legacy this morning! LOL
  • subearusubearu Posts: 3,613
    that just has to suck Loosh. I think you've got it covered though - add fluid 'till it's full and add more after running it a bit. Does the cranking the heat up trick work when the gasket is bad? :dontknow:

    Well, regardless, you need to get it fixed so it's in good trade-in shape for that SG-T that us fence folk are 'kindly' pushing you to! ;-)

  • hypovhypov Posts: 3,068
    around the bend with all the water you're putting in.

  • lucien2lucien2 Posts: 2,984
    I quit putting water in it, and won't drive it until I can get more antifreeze. According to others' experience, this is the first and earliest warning. The car probably has another 2 or so months before the problem comes to a head, as it were.

    And this is all assuming that it really is the HG. I mean, no mechanic has actually looked at the thing yet.
  • dcm61dcm61 Posts: 1,550
    the cooling system that is. There's a plastic bleeder screw (phillips head within a square head) on the top passenger side of the radiator on Gen II Legacies. Remove the bleeder screw while you add water/coolant. IIRC, the bleeder screw and the procedure for bleeding is in the owner's manual. Make sure you don't overtighten or lose the o-ring!

  • hondafriekhondafriek Ottawa CanadaPosts: 2,969
    Hate to rain on your parade but I would bet money it is the head gasket, I am sure Colin will agree,

      Cheers Pat.
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