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Subaru Forester



  • dirtbagdirtbag Posts: 57
    quote: "why do they make these rebates valid until a certain date!! Only to re-instate again a few days after that period is over?"
    To make you think you have to buy now and better not wait until next month. It's marketing 101. :)
  • mb789mb789 Posts: 89
    I have a 2006 Forester X, and after driving it, it still has a slight burning smell -- it has 1500 miles or so on it. When I first got it, it had a burning smell almost like a skunk smell. Sometimes it smells a little like radiator/anti-freeze. Mine has squeaks, too -- but they are in the dash where the clear plastic covers the gauges.

    This is my first Forester, and I am only somewhat happy with it. I've primarily had Jeeps, and I can't wait to go back to one. Unfortunately, that will probably be a while since I've had the Forester only for two months.

    Anyone ever been in this situation where you buy a car and don't really, really like it? Any way to sell it or trade it without being upside down in the next vehicle?? I guess I should just be happy that I have a car and stop whining. . . :)
  • samiam_68samiam_68 Posts: 775
    The thing with Foresters, and most Subarus for that matter, is that they are good, solid, dependable cars. However, they usually come with a full assortment of annoyances. Most people learn to live with them, but some get rid of them shortly after purchase.
    If you get rid of it right after the purchase, you'll be taking a huge hit on depreciation, so you need to weigh this carefully.
  • richyoungrichyoung Posts: 31
    OK, I am not your typical Subie owner (ok, that is a bit of an oxymoron, but let's move on!)...I am wondering if it would be wise (and doable) to remove the roof rack from my 06 Forester X. I do not use the rack for anything. So, should I be happy and leave well enough alone, or should I see what happens? Thanks.
  • bayview6bayview6 Posts: 141
    Rich, are you talking about roof rails or the 2 cross-bars that go across the roof. The cross-bars are definitely removable (see owners' manual) and I took mine off the day after I bought the vehicle.

    The roof rails are not removable.
  • richyoungrichyoung Posts: 31
    Thanks for that info - just may do that. I am hearing that these can impact MPG....that true? Or am I being too OCD about this?
  • dstew1dstew1 Posts: 275
    You may notice a 1-2 mpg improvement after removing the crossbars, as well as a somewhat quieter ride.

    I believe There is a way to remove the actual roof rails that the crossbars rest on, but they are screwed into the roof so you would be left with a few exposed holes up there.

  • richyoungrichyoung Posts: 31
    hmm...what if I removed...there a way to nicely plug holes? warranty issues? this is getting interesting, verrry interesting!
  • dstew1dstew1 Posts: 275
    Yesterday I noticed that the one-touch open feature wasn't working when I hit the button for the moonroof; as soon as I lifted my finger from the button it would stop. Then when I held it down continuously, it would only open about 6 inches at a time before I would have lift my finger and depress the button again.

    AFAIK, the mechanism hasn't been exposed to any water or anything like that, but the last time it worked normally it made a strange, slightly grinding sound when I closed it.

    Is this a known issue? The car is still under warranty so having Subaru fix it shouldn't be a problem, but if there is an easy, known fix I'd rather avoid the hassle of the dealership.

  • dirtbagdirtbag Posts: 57
    I've noticed my moonroof not opening/closing all the way sometimes. It might be my imagination but it seems like a full press of the button opens/closes it all the way and a half press inches it. I haven't really experimented much to figure it out. I'm usually driving when I open it and don't want to be distracted.
  • bayview6bayview6 Posts: 141
    Warranty issues? You bet! The bottom line is that there is no reason to remove the roof rails. Next you will be taking off the rear bumper. ;)
  • richyoungrichyoung Posts: 31
    OK - Maybe just leave things as they are....thanks for the insights!
  • I bought a Subaru Forester on Friday (2 days ago), first time Subaru owner. I started the car Saturday night, the cruise control started blinking and the check engine light came on. The manual says to take it to the dealer to be checked out.

    I'd like to return this car and am not sure I'll even want them to switch it out for another one. Has this happened to anyone else? Does anyone know the policy of returning a car the next business day after you bought it?
  • mb789mb789 Posts: 89
    Sorry to hear about your car. I do not know the laws where you are located, but I tried to find out the same info right after I bought my Forester back in April. I didn't have much luck in Ohio.

    The day after I bought my Forester, the check engine light wasn't on, but I found a couple small crackled spots on the paint from egg damage caused by it sitting on their lot underneath trees. I wanted to return it, but everything I read here basically said that when you buy a car you are stuck with it (don't know if this totally true in Ohio because I looked on the internet and didn't talk to a lawyer). The dealer did agree to fix it, but it took them two weeks. They did provide a loaner car.

    I am nervous about washing it because the paint scratches so easily. Anyone have any recommendations on what cloths and what soaps to use when you wash Subarus? My Forester is Garnet/San Remo Red.

    I could never imagine taking it through a car wash for fear it would totally ruin it. I ususally wash my own cars by hand anyway.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,683
    "Here at, the most frequently asked question we get is this panicked email: "Can I take my car back!?" The answer I've been giving is, basically, that's up to the dealer."

    Victory for Car Buyers(Straightline Blog)

    Steve, Host
  • bayview6bayview6 Posts: 141
    The blinking light has to do with the smog control system. The same thing happened to me at about 5000 miles. The dealer replaced a sensor and that solved the problem.

    As to your interest in returning your new Forester, it's a common psychological occurrance referred to as buyer's remorse. Review all the positive reasons why you bought in the first place. Identify all your concerns of perceived shortcomings and then try to see if you can correct those problem areas. No car is perfect.

    I'm a first-time Subaru (Forester) owner and at 7000 miles am very happy with my purchase. My biggest complain is that damn seat-belt reminder chime.
  • kdshapirokdshapiro Posts: 5,751
    Anything can go wrong with a car. Although it's unsettling to have an electronic issue off the bat, for the most part Foresters are bullet-proof. Take it to the dealer, get it fixed and then go on.

    Reading between the lines in your post you do not have buyers remorse. You have buyers panic. Buyers remorse is when you wish you would have bought more, bigger, better, etc. Bigger HD tv, faster computer, larger house, etc. Buyers panic is when you worry if you have a lemon, or your expensive HD tv goes on the fritz after it was just installed, or you move into a house and you immediately have a flood in the basement.

    Good luck with your Forester, and let us know how it goes.

    (FWIW - I've had one warranty issue in a year and that was with the seat thingy in the back the pulls up to fold down the rear seat.)
  • oregonboyoregonboy Posts: 1,653
    I don't know if this link has been posted here before, but it's just too good not to share. This is a clip from British video-mag of a comparison between an Impreza STI and a Forester STI (!) on a wet track.

    Not only are the cars sweet, but the female test driver is a charmer.

  • samiam_68samiam_68 Posts: 775
    Very cooooool :shades:
  • kfcarterkfcarter Posts: 1
    I just purchased a 2006 Subaru Forester LL Bean Edition. To my dismay, my heated seats only heat for 5 minutes and then they cycle off, or down, but do not stay hot. Has anybody else had this experience - or do your seats stay hot? The dealer doesn't seem to know the answer to this question and I thought before I take it in to be checked out, maybe I could get others experience in this matter. Thanks.
  • framelessframeless Posts: 5
    in may my wife and i purchased an 06 forester x with the premium package. what are the advantages and disadvantages of the frameless windows? trying to understand why subaru chooses to use those. also, why does the gear shifter for the automatic transmission have that unusual configuration?
  • dstew1dstew1 Posts: 275
    Does anyone know if the factory installed cargo-area subwoofer in the '06 Forester will adapt to work with an aftermarket head unit?

    As far as I can tell, the sub connects to the back of the factory HU with a square 8-pin connector. The wiring harness that comes from Crutchfield doesn't apply to the sub, only the (16 pin?) connector that houses the electrical and speaker wiring.

    If anyone has any experience with this, or any ideas, please share. I'm only budgeting for a HU at this point, and don't really want to lose the sub.

  • mnfmnf Spokane WaPosts: 405
    "Rich, taking the cross bars off ( not the rails) give it a sleek look and a small mpg improvement and quieter. I take mine off unless i need them for a trip it takes only 5 min

    Good Luck.... Matt
  • samiam_68samiam_68 Posts: 775
    Frameless windows are not bad.. they just rattle when partially open, otherwise they're as good as framed windows in most cases.

    The Forester auto shifter pattern, on the other hand, is truly idiotic. Why did Subaru do it right on the Legacy, and screw it up on the Forester, I don't know.
  • richyoungrichyoung Posts: 31
    Thanks, Matt - I may consider that, then.
  • p0926p0926 Posts: 4,423
    HOT DAMN! I want a Forester STi!!! Please? Pretty please??? :D

  • p0926p0926 Posts: 4,423
    Your seats are working fine, they're supposed to cycle on and off. No doubt to prevent the heating elements from getting too hot and melting the seat cushions. FYI, I think on the low setting the heaters will stay on all the time.

  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I think they have a patent. It's horrible. But don't worry, it goes away. It takes a lot more than 1500 miles, though. Some say it's the underspray burning off the exhaust. They spray to make the trip from Gunma, Japan by boat.

    Cruise control issue - give the dealer a chance to fix it. Technically, for a lemon law, they get 3 strikes, so hang in there. This will all be a faint memory a few months from now.

    Video - awesome!

    If I were a kid, I'd love to be taken to school in this

    Bingo. I'd give a kidney for one of those.

  • eps105eps105 Posts: 216
    The moonroof "malfunction" described is in fact, not a malfunction at all, but is by design. It is a little known fact that if you override the auto-open or auto-close function of the moonroof 5 times in a row (by pressing the switch in the opposite direction of the moonroof's travel), it will switch into manual mode.

    In my case, this happened to me when I swapped out my battery and it defaulted to the manual mode when I restored power. (OK, I'll call that a malfunction.)

    Anyway, I found the simple solution buried deep in the Forester Technical Reference manual:

    To reset the sunroof motor:
    (1) Close the sunroof lid completely, and then
    push and hold the switch to close for more than 1 second.
    (At this time, the sunroof operates 50 mm (1.97
    in) each intermittently. And also the switch is
    needed to push for several times.)
    (2) Open the sunroof lid approx. 400 mm (15.75
    (3) Close the sunroof lid completely, and then
    push the switch to close for more than 1 second.
    (Sunroof will now operate automatically by performing
    this operation.)

    Hope this helps!

  • dstew1dstew1 Posts: 275
    Thank you for posting this fix, I will try it out as soon as I get out of the office today.

    I just realized that right before I started having the moonroof problem, I had disconnected the battery because I was working on my stereo headunit. So your solution may work for me.

    I will let you all know if it works or not.


    Edit: The moonroof problem started happening the day BEFORE I had the battery unplugged. Unless the malfunction can manifest with a simple ECU reset, which I had done with a programmer, then I am less hopeful than before but will still test this procedure and post back with results.
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