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Subaru Crew Problems & Solutions



  • c_hunterc_hunter Posts: 4,487
    Are you sure the radio fuse was the only one giving power to the radio? If it is an aftermarket radio, then I would not assume it uses only one circuit. Actually, even the factory radio uses three circuits -- one is the switched radio/acc circuit, one is illumination, and the other is a constant +12V for the memory and clock. It's not uncommon for poorly installed aftermarket radios to mix/mess these up.
  • gaucho1gaucho1 Posts: 22
    Sixty stacks, Fibber,

    You guys didn't say where you were. Cold temps will drop battery voltage. (Couple that with lowered vaporization of cold fuel, thicker oil, and you'll understand why starting on a cold morning can be a pain.)

    The battery chemically decomposes to provide current -- one way. To recharge, current has to flow across the battery poles the other way, and at a greater potential than the battery resistance.

    In normal temps, the battery cells can provide about 12.8 Volts. To recharge, the alternator/generator has to provide at least 13.8 to 14 volts.

    Your car is claimed to run on "12 volts". In actual practice, it's circuits are designed with the alternator voltage in mind.

    Granted, the addition of all the full-time digital crap does produce a daily drain.

    Another cold-weather phenomenon is the fan belts. They *expand* in colder weather, allowing for slippage. On extremely cold days, that's why you may hear a belt squeal, which soon goes away, as the belts heat up and contract, restoring the orignal tension(s). Check their tension before going too much farther into your respective wallets.

  • Thx guys. I am in Florida - so the cold is not an issue. The radio/cd is the factory install. However, I had the dealer install a replacement for the original after I complained that the box ran hot to the touch when playing cd's more than an hour or so; it would also starting skipping at that point. The replacement is no better really. Maybe they wired it incorrectly both times? The backlight staying illuminated periodically is a new 'feature'

    I pulled the radio fuse per the car manual and have it still die once since then. I was not aware that more one fuse was involved. Pulling the radio fuse - turns off the radio and the dash clock. What is the illumination fuse? Is it all the dashboard lights.

    I bought a radio shack multimeter for $20 and have been trying to see what the draw is when the car is off. I know less than nothing about electricity and currents but saw this on the i-club forum:

    <<Best way to check for parasitic drain with the engine off is to disconnect one of the battery terminals and connect a milliameter in series between the battery post and cable terminal. Make sure the car is in full "standby" mode- key out, all doors and trunk closed, interior light off. You should see well under 100ma drain, probably closer to 10ma if all is well. If it's much above that, in the hundreds of ma or more, there is an excessive drain someplace. Find it by disconnecting suspected circuits/devices one at a time until the drain drops back down to normal.
    While the meter is connected, do not turn the key on or attempt to start the car, this may destroy the meter (or at least pop its internal fuse). In fact don't put the key in at all until you complete the test and reconnect the battery terminal.
    To verify the battery is charging, measuring the voltage across the battery is usually sufficient. However you also want to be sure the battery is in good condition, so it should meet the following conditions- at least 12.5 V on the battery with the engine off and after sitting for a while, water levels in cells full and equal (if applicable), hydrometer test of cells shows all w/good and equal charge levels (again if applicable). If the battery is sealed it should be tested with a load or conductance tester (conductance test is preferred as it is non-destructive).
    With the known good battery, there should be 13.5-14.5 V across it with the engine running. For a more thorough charging system test, a shop can put a scope on it to check for alternator function. Some problems such as bad diodes can only be ID'd with a scope.>>

    I assume I should disconnect the positive post (leave negative intact?) - switch meter to DCA mode and place red lead on post; black lead on cable? Sounds like I should see a value of less than 100 on the draw or ....maybe I'll just fry the meter - Is DCA the correct mode????
  • nohacklenohackle Posts: 1
    I have a 05 Outback XT and just this past week the turbo went out while my daughter was driving home from school
    Still waiting at the dealers for the replacement. I had another outback years back with recurrent gasket problems.....fool me once I guess. So much for the 1st time

    will let you know what happens.....
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Wow, that's really odd. My guess is that it wasn't the turbo itself but rather one of the oil or cooling lines too it. It's very rare one of these turbos "blow"

  • Hi,
    We have an '07 Forester Premium version that's supposed to have 120 watts of sound. It sounds to me like about 5 or 10. The radio/CD unit says model "6 CD Changer C-123." Does anybody else have the same impression as me? Did we get the correct model of stereo?
  • logtraillogtrail Posts: 74
    I don't know about you, but my 06 LL Bean's stereo is just fine; I suspect that if I were a 16 years old pimply faced guy I would want to have about 5000 decibles blasting out, but for an average adult, why does anyone need a loud sound system to listen to good jazz, classical music or NPR?
    Beats me. Reminds me of a friend years ago who was so excited that he got a huge speaker system and proved it to me by playing the sound of a freight train !! Hey, cool!
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Some folks are audiphiles. I'm not one of them but I know some "old" folks who love to blast their stereos. Heck I've driven 100s of miles listening to just my exhaust note.

  • locke2clocke2c Posts: 5,038
    You do have the right stereo for the Premium, and you are correct that it is underwhelming. It is 120 watts peak, at best, which in reality probably boils down to a single IC amplifier chip producing maybe 20 watts RMS total.

    The first step would be to replace the speakers-- big gains can be hard for $75-100 per speaker location (start with the front doors, of course) and then if that's still not enough you can replace the source unit and add amplifiers.

    But I think that quality speakers will probably make you happy. If not we can discuss it in more detail in Modifications.. I have a few thousand invested in my Evo's stereo and have been an audiophile for a long time. :)

  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Colin, being the BMW guy that you are, any thoughts on a 1998 740il w/60k miles little old lady driven, friend of the family, probably can pick it up for $13k-13.5k

  • c_hunterc_hunter Posts: 4,487
    The problem I discovered when adding aftermarket speakers to weak factory radios in Subarus is that the sound level (volume) often drops in a noticeable way. Typically, a good aftermarket speaker will take higher power levels to drive than the cheesy factory speakers, so you have to go to higher levels with the volume knob than before. Couple that with the auto-loudness/EQ built into the radios to prevent distortion at higher volumes, and the result is that the factory radio runs out of oomph to power the new speakers. Sound quality improves, but the overall sound level drops noticeably. It's a lousy situation for upgrades. In my WRX, I ended up replacing the whole system; the factory radio just did not have enough guts for the aftermarket speakers I put in.
  • hypovhypov Posts: 3,068
    "so you have to go to higher levels with the volume knob than before"...
    ..."and the result is that the factory radio runs out of oomph to power the new speakers."

    to avoid that, select speakers that require least to be driven.
    I had the OEM 6 CD HU drive a set of Kenwood KFC-X170 and KFC-X138 for a while before getting aftermarket HU, which only requires a minimum of 5 watts to drive. The sound is a big improvement from the "Upgrade Speakers" I'd had. As to volume and sound, it is crisp and clear up till volume level 23 [I think that's the level] but by or before then it would be considered really loud for most of us.

    As for the 120 watts, I guess that's the newer models. My '03 WRX, the HU is 80 watts peak[20 watts/channel] and the powered sub is 120 watts.

  • xwesxxwesx Fairbanks, AlaskaPosts: 10,925
    As to volume and sound, it is crisp and clear up till volume level 23 [I think that's the level] but by or before then it would be considered really loud for most of us.

    :surprise: I should say! Haha, the loudest I have had my '07 (stock system) is 10, and I think that is "really loud." I only put it that high if I am on gravel and trying to listen to a talk show/voices that tend to fade rapidly with road noise. Otherwise, 6 to 8 does me well. My wife prefers 4. :( I should note that I put the bass setting on 4 of 8, with treble and tweeters on 8. At "0" across the board, it seems very muffled.
    2014 Audi Q7 TDI, 2008 and 2013 Subaru Forester(s), 1969 Chevrolet C20 Pickup, 1969 Ford Econoline 100, 1976 Ford F250 Pickup
  • locke2clocke2c Posts: 5,038
    The v8 is pretty reliable and that model shouldn't have many electrical gremlins either. Very solid car assuming it's been properly maintained. If so, it's definitely worth $13.5k.

  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Thanks Colin, yeah his aunt and uncle followed the book on maintaining it. Will go check it out. Color isn't the best champagne with light interior, but I figure it'll be less flashy and less likely to be stolen in my hood that way.

  • Thanks everybody for the good, helpful information.
    Bill (at the beach)
  • logtraillogtrail Posts: 74
    Silly me. And I thought an audiophile was someone who appreciated music and the way that good music could be reproduced, and I forgot that the meaning has changed to someone who loves loud sounds.
  • subearusubearu Posts: 3,613

    Though, I tend to call the extreme loud music or bass thumpers "loudiphiles" lol

  • pab985pab985 Posts: 1
    Recently upgraded the radio in the Forester and moved the Forester radio with weather band to our Outback sport. We are not receiving anything on the weather band. Question is should this band work in the Outback sport? Maybe it was just installed incorrectly?? Don't remember having to do anything special with the Forester when first using the WB, but maybe there's something I've forgotten?

    Thanks for your help!
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Possibly there is an antenna connection not being made?

  • leharveyleharvey Posts: 10
    Wondered if anyone had seen any other reports of this:
    Bolt that holds the timing belt tensioner pulley 'sheared' off on my 99 Forester (155,000 miles) -- severe valve damage when the belt released. Shop is working w/ the car now. I am the original owner and all maint had been done.
    Orig timing belt replaced at 85,000. I had never seen this issue reported before .. curious if anyone else had?
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    99 Forester was that a DOHC or SOHC? I'm guessing since you had valve damage it was a DOHC engine.

    Did they replace the tensioner at 85K, usually it's a good idea to replace the tensioner when they put in a new timing belt.

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Nah, loud sounds usually comes with distortion and is simply obnoxious. High end audio isn't like that at all, they go for quality over noise.
  • leharveyleharvey Posts: 10
    This engine is (suprisingly) a SOHC ... the bolt broke at about 70mph which may have contributed to the damage. Shop manual states that valve damage is 'unlikely or minimal' so guess I got 'minimal'. The tensioner assbly was not replaced prior to failure ... suspect may have gotten some play in there which stressed the bolt.
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Hmm interesting, I blew my timing belt on my XT6 (non-interference also) under heavy acceleration but didn't blow the valves :(

  • c_hunterc_hunter Posts: 4,487
    Specifically, which bolt on the tensioner unit was it? Was it the actual pulley "axle" bolt?
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I think the EJ25 actually is an interference design...
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    The SOHC ones aren't though.

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Gotcha. I knew mine was.
  • leharveyleharvey Posts: 10
    The bolt was the main 'axle' bolt which anchors the assembly to the block.
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