Subaru Impreza Brake Questions

PF_FlyerPF_Flyer Pennsylvania Furnace, PAPosts: 9,403
Discuss Impreza brake problems here.
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  • I have a 02 WRX wagon and there is a mystery sound that happens intermitantly when the breaks are applied. This has been going on for 1 1/2 years and i have taken it in at least 6 times and have driven it 4 times with a mechanic in the car...and NOTHING! They say everything looks fine and they cant hear anything. It's there right now and again they can't find anything and again they want me to go and drive it. i'm freaking out.
    THE SOUND!! It comes from the front right side (i think) and sounds like a CLUNK! as if something has slipped out or into slipping into place and its loud. HELP! My boyfriend says it sounds like when those four wheel drive manual locking hubs click into place...but louder! Do you have any idea what this could be..????????????
  • andmoonandmoon Posts: 320
    Does it happen once or everytime you apply the brakes?
    Sometimes when you apply the brakes when going backwards the pads shift, then the first time you apply them going forwards you can hear a clunk as they shift in the other direction....my Acura has been doing this for over 40K miles.
  • its pretty random, no real pattern. sometimes it will do it twice in arrow and then it wont do it for a few hours.
    thanks
  • Hello. After driving our commuter beater for a couple weeks I got into our WRX and noticed a distinct shudder during some relatively hard braking on an exit ramp that I don't think I had ever noticed. I gave it a couple more before I got home and didn't notice it as much but at 52,000 miles I'm thinking perhaps it needs some new pads/rotors. I'm wondering if anyone has any thoughts or suggestions...maybe I don't need them yet? I've changed pads/rotors on other cars before but I'm not sure how difficult it is on the WRX (ABS an issue?) And does anyone have any suggestions for a equal or better setup (within reason) that I might purchase than the stock OEM brakes? Thanks.
  • raybearraybear Posts: 1,795
    Probably just rotors, and they can cut them for you so you don't pay an arm and a leg. I assume you've replaced the pads already.
  • andmoonandmoon Posts: 320
    My wrx w/ 36K miles shudders if I have not driven it for a while. I think it is the rust. A couple hard brakes and the shudder goes away. If it is rotors, new ones don't cost all that much.
  • BY CHANCE... Anyone out there know off hand, what type of bolt head might be on the through-bolt that holds the front brake calpiers together on a late 90's Subaru Impreza or a 2005 Chevy Impala? Would it be "off base" to call the dealer service center and ask?
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Are you trying to replace it with something from home depot? I wouldn't do that, go to the dealer and purchase the proper bolt.

    -mike
  • lilbluewgn02lilbluewgn02 PAPosts: 1,089
    I have 48,000 miles on my 2002 WRX wagon and was looking for suggestions on new pads. Should I go OEM or something else...normal brisk driver, no track.
    Serge
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    OEM are quiet, good for road use. Unless you go to the track that's what I'd stick with.

    C&D tested Hawk pads and they did really well. I think it may even have been a WRX they used for the test.

    -juice
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Hawk HPs are your best bet for a street pad with a bit more bite, low dust, low noise. We run Hawk HP+ for HPDEs at the track and street use, high noise, high dust. For the Legacy race car we are going with Hawk Blues in the front and blacks in the rear, which are track-only as their operating temp is higher than streetable temps.

    -mike
  • lilbluewgn02lilbluewgn02 PAPosts: 1,089
    I ended up getting the OEMs from 1stsubaruparts.com...good prices versus Liberty and other places...64 for fronts and 57 for rears. They should be here this week and I'll get them put on...you can feel that it needs them already...48K miles is a record for me personally for pads...must be that extra weight in my right foot!
    Hope you all had a good thanksgiving.
    Serge
  • Hi There,
    If you wish to purchase new brakes for your impreza I am selling front performance drilled discs (pair) for £100 and front high performance pads for £30.
    If you wish to purchase these let me know and I can send you a pay pal invoice and you can pay through paypal or credit card or personal cheque. My email is [email protected]
    Many Thanks,
    Gary
  • Hi There,
    If you wish to purchase new performance brakes for your impreza I am selling front high performance drilled discs (pair) for £100 and front high performance pads for £30.
    If you wish to purchase these let me know and I can send you a pay pal invoice and you can pay through paypal or credit card or personal cheque. My email is [email protected]
    Many Thanks,
    Gary
  • Hi There,
    If you wish to purchase new performance brakes for your impreza I am selling front high performance drilled discs (pair) for £100 and front high performance pads for £30.
    If you wish to purchase these let me know and I can send you a pay pal invoice and you can pay through paypal or credit card or personal cheque. My email is [email protected]
    Many Thanks,
    Gary
  • kevin111kevin111 Posts: 991
    I have the Hawk HPs pads on my WRX and they have been GREAT. Quiet, brake very well, very little brake dust. Highly recommend them. :)
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    In that case, I carry all kinds of brakes and rotors :)

    -mike
  • and huzzah, call me for firewood ;)

    John
  • Purchased new 2008 Impreza 2.5i premium and after roughly 2 months and 1000 miles, warning lights coming on during normal driving and staying on. This is sporadic. It's been to the dealer 3 times now. They are perplexed and are working with Suburu to identify a fix. Anyone else? If not, posting this in case more show up.
  • I got my 2-008 2.5i delivered on 11-7-2007 and have encountered the identical problem. Dan Perkins Subaru in Milford, CT is aware of the problem. They asked me to come to see the service department. I am planning to visit this Monday 12-10-2007. I pull off the road and restart the car and the lights go off. Also my cruise control does not work when the lights go off. I took a picture of the problem with my cell phone because they won't believe me... I am glad I am not the only one with the same problem.

    I was driving under slippery and hilly conditions when the lights went off. Not sure if the systems were working fine and only the lights were on or the systems were actually disabled. I am speaking of ABS and VDC. The car performed very well while many other cars were loosing control.

    I will let you know here if Subaru will fix the problem or like in you case.. just studying it.

    You can call me 203-767-0770.
  • Corrections... the car is 2008 Impreza 2.5i and the cruise control does not work when the ABS and VDC warning lights go on (I said off above). The restart works like a reboot in Windows... clears up the problem(until the next time). I hope its just a software error that is fixed by an update to the code applied by the service computer.

    Stay tuned for an update.
  • Subaru service in Milford CT ordered a brake sensor today... stay tuned will report after its installed and see if the warning light problem is solved.
  • Sorry about your problem but somewhat relieved we weren't doing something wrong. The dealer; Goldstein Subaru Albany, NY, did replace a part and to date, we haven't had a reoccurrence of the problem. I'll include the error code and part changed in a message tomorrow.
  • Update on service performed by Goldstein Subaru: The comment section says "replaced VDC control module". The system error code was COO54. The parts and labor section as listed straight from the invoice:

    1 27595FG010 ECU REPAIR VDC C0U4
    C5361901 ABS CONTROL UNIT

    Hope this helps
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    I've always had good luck with repairs at Goldstein.

    -mike
  • After the diagnostic visit for the problem I have not had a recurrence. I returned for a part replacement, and in my case Dan Perkins Subaru chose to replace a brake light switch:
    1 83311FG010 Switch
    308151 Stop Light Switch R&R

    I will report after a few months if this did the job. I did send the Service Manager the fixes done by Goldstein for the same problem, but they chose to replace the switch.

    If anyone has a similar problem feel free to call me on the number in one of my replys above.

    Thanks, Sol Briks
  • On Nov. 30, 2007, I took possession of my brand new 2008 Subaru Impreza, 2.5i sedan (premium package, 5M) and starting at about 400 km, the warning lights appeared and the VDC, ABS, and hill holder functions were disengaged. Restarting the car cleared the warning lights until the next time it happened. When I initially took the car in, there were no diagnostic codes that could be pulled, so the service dept. couldn't do anything. I was told to bring the car in when the warning lights were on. After two weeks of driving with this annoying problem (each time the warning lights come on, I pull out of traffic and restart the car), the lights finally came on while the dealership was open. They pulled some codes from the car because I didn't turn the car off.

    The first fix was to change out a control unit of some sort - I think it was the VDC control module. That fix resulted in the warning lights coming on more frequently, making the car virtually undriveable. After only 2 1/2 months, my car is in the dealership for the third time (and it's been there now for the past 2 weeks) and they will be changing out the brake switch. I'm hoping this will do the trick, but I won't get a call back from the dealership until tomorrow (all things going well, and so far they haven't). Even then I won't know if the problem is fixed until I drive my car for an extended period of time without the warning lights coming on.

    This is my first Subaru and it's looking as if it will be my last. The only reason I purchased this particular car was for its safety and reliability ratings. How frustrating that it's the safety systems that have proven to be highly unreliable. I could've spent much less money on any number of cars that don't work.

    I was told by the dealership here in Winnipeg that there are two Impreza's in Winnipeg with this problem. I believe there will be more Imprezas reporting this problem as sales increase and as people put miles on them.

    I would very much appreciate knowing if the brake switch replacement worked.

    -wt
  • Hi, I had the same problem.. read Post #28. The problem was solved with the brake switch being replaced. It has not reccured since it was repaired. I love my first Subaru and plan to own many more.

    Sol Briks
  • Thanks for your post #30. I'm hoping that will do the trick on mine as well. When I picked up my car from the dealership after they changed out the brake switch, the red light that appears around the ignition was flashing and not fading out as it should. This turns out to be way too distracting while driving at night. I'm hoping that this will be a quick fix, but it results in yet another trip to the service department today. (But I did drive for an entire day so far without the VDC, ABS, and hill holder warning lights coming on.)

    When my car is working, it is fantastic to drive. Given my experience, I don't have the confidence that when I turn it on it will work. I'm hoping that I just got off to a rocky start with this car and the flashing ignition light is the last repair. I'll know in a year from now whether or not I'd purchase another Subaru. At this point, the fun factor has not exceeded the time, inconvenience and aggravation of the repairs.

    Thanks again for responding with your message. I'll post again in a month if the brake switch did the trick. I'll post again sooner if it didn't!

    wt
  • I'm pleased to say that the replacement brake switch seems to have fixed my problem with the VDC, ABS, and hill holder warning lights coming on. The service department at the dealership found that the original brake switch was in fact broken.

    I've been driving my Impreza for almost a month now without the warning lights coming on. It's been great (and I'm knocking on wood as I type this). The Impreza is certainly a terrific car to drive, especially during less-than-ideal winter driving conditions. I'm hoping that future trips to the service department are few and far between and involve only routine maintenance.

    wt
  • I am having the same problems with regard to the warning lights.

    Was it the brake switch light or the VDC control module that fixed the problem?

    I am bringing the car in for service on 04/12/08 should I tell the service department about the solution mentioned in your post.

    Thank you

    PM
  • Please do mention it.. in my case I told them it may be the VDC module.. they told me its a defective break switch.. and it did the job...

    Now I am dealing with thin and fragile paint.. hope the fix is simple.. somehow I think I got a lemon. Have an appointment with the dealer tomorrow.. stay tuned..

    I have a dark gray color.. 2008 Impreza sedan.. bought in November.

    Sol
  • After a couple of months the brake switch problem returned tonight.. right after I released the brake pedal.. maybe the new break switch failed again..

    If anyone has a repeat failure please write in. I also have difficuty shifting out of Park now.. I think its related to the brake switch failure.

    Sol Briks 203-767-0770
  • I had the same problem re not being able to get out of park. When my break switch was fixed the transmission problem went away. I am very interested as to what your dealer says about this issue. I have not had the problem again but am now worried that I could in the future.

    Would it be possible for you to keep us informed about the issue? Peggy Manner
  • paisanpaisan Posts: 21,181
    Makes perfect sense. The brake switch is what is used to keep the car in P so if it has failed, then it wil not come out of P.

    -mike
  • impreza2008impreza2008 Posts: 30
    I just had the second break switch replaced at Dan Perkins Subaru.. they think the design is flawed and may break again. At least they promised a free oil change the next time it happens.. very nice people.

    Also, they spray painted the black peeled paint on the muffler.. which they damaged when they applied the paint harder.. see my other problem...

    All in all the issues are being handled and I am happy with my 2008 Impreza.

    Sol Briks

    PS...Does anyone have an opinion about the 2009 Forester?
  • mom3peggymom3peggy Posts: 8
    Did your dealer indicate that they have had alot of problems with regard to the brake switch? I had the same problem and my dealer indicated that they have had only one other car with the same problem.

    After I read about your second go around I called Subaru 's 800 number and asked if they have had a run of brake switch problems with the 2008 impreza. I was told no. They assured me that if there is a rash of warranty repairs for the brake switch something will be done about the problem.

    Was your repair reported as a warranty repair? Do you think that your dealer reported their thoughts to Subaru re the design flaw? I realize that replacing the brake switch is not hard or expensive but I do not relish my new car having to be repaired every couple of months.PM
  • impreza2008impreza2008 Posts: 30
    I did not speak to the service manager.. just the counter person in the service department. She said they replaced the switch with the same type and they expected the same result in a few months. She had a theory of what was wrong with the design but I did not pursue it with her. She also said the next time this happens I will get a free oil change. I called my wife and said I should be getting lots of free oil changes.

    Yes, this was a warranty repair. I was told to expect a survey from Subaru. I will see if there is a write in part to the survey so I can voice my displeasure. We priced out a 2009 Forester. I put that purchase on hold until I gain more confidence in Subaru quality.

    I will report on this issue if another break switch failure develops. I know where the switch is located in case it does not reset. I may have to give it a whack to snap it back so I can get my transmission out of Park.

    Sol Briks
  • impreza2008impreza2008 Posts: 30
    Guest what, yesterday the VDC and ABS lights came again on after I applied the brakes on the highway. I won't call the dealer until I need to go in for an oil change.. and hopefully collect on the pomise of a free oil change if the repair fails again.

    I responded to a a survey sent by Subaru. Explained the repeated failures. Hope they email me and offer an explanation.

    Please write in an let me know if you are having this problem.

    Sol Briks
  • mom3peggymom3peggy Posts: 8
    I am so sorry for all your problems.

    Are your brakes still working and it is only the lights that are failing? Are you still having problems getting your car out of park? Hopefully you will not be buying the 2009 car.

    Do you think the car is safe to drive?

    PM
  • impreza2008impreza2008 Posts: 30
    The brakes work fine. The car is safe but the VDC, ABS and cruise control stop working. The first time this happened was in the winter while I was on ice. I pulled of the road.. carefully.. and restarted the car. In this weather I don't bother to reset because I am more concerned about having difficulty getting out of park.

    When I started the car the next morning in my driveway all was well.. went out of park ok and the VDC and ABS lights reset. I dont know what is the point of getting the brake switch replaced if they put in the same design.. and within days the problem comes back.
  • vali51vali51 Posts: 3
    Same problem I have on F2.5XT 4EAT, ABS and VDC lights coming on. Nothing found on the computer test. Should i suggest to Subaru service here to replace the breack switch as well?
    Thanks,
  • impreza2008impreza2008 Posts: 30
    Subaru is not recognizing the design flaw.. they are just replacing brake switched with new brake switches of the same design.. go back to them.. start creating a record. My dealer said they have to redesign the break switch..

    I will keep going back.. also I cancelled a Forester purchase in progress because I think they use the identical brake switch in that car.. What a shameful state affairs.

    I hope the Subaru car division is acquired by another company as soon as possible and salvage whatever reputation they have left.

    Sol Briks
  • mom3peggymom3peggy Posts: 8
    I had the same problem re the lights coming on. My dealer replaced the brake switch. I have found that the NHTSA has issued a techinical service bulletin no 15 re this problem. I have ordered the bulletin from the NHTSA but that will take awhile to get.

    According to the summary of the bulletin Subaru restyled the original brake switch. I called my dealer today and was told that when my car was fixed the new design of brake switch was used. The service department said they have not had any person coming in with recurrent problems.

    Is it possible that when your car was fixed the old style was used? PM">link title
  • impreza2008impreza2008 Posts: 30
    Thanks.. this is very helpful. My dealer said they replaced the defective brake switch with the same design brake switch and that the new design was not available.. maybe they are in the dark.. will call the dealer and report back. Post the NHTSA bulletin when you get it. Wonder if the bulletins are online.

    Sol Briks
  • mom3peggymom3peggy Posts: 8
    The summary of the service bulletin is on the nhtsa.dot.gov web site under service bulletins.The service bulletin number is 10024073.

    Please keep us informed as to the results of your talks with the dealer. I really hope that the new brake switch design works. PM
  • vali51vali51 Posts: 3
    Thanks for info. What does this brake switch in fact? Is it the one controlling the rear brake lights? Or some other? Any code for the restyled one please?
  • mom3peggymom3peggy Posts: 8
    Since I do not have the full bulletin I can only go by the fact that codes C0074 and C0054 are listed on the summary and these are codes reported by people who are having problems with the abs and vdc lights flashing on their dashboards.

    My dealer did not give me the new part number. I was told that the problem was related to the new electrical system on the 2008 subaru impreza and the fact that all the parts were not communicating correctly. I am hoping that the service bulletin lists the correct part number.

    I know very little about cars but am trying to understand the problem so I can feel better about driving my car. I have tried to call the Subaru 800 number but could get no one who was willing to discuss the brake switch problem with me or the tech bulletin.

    My prior car was a Honda Civic and I never had problems with it. I changed cars only because I was moving to the state of Washington and was advised that because of the rainy weather and the hills a Subaru was a good car.

    I did order the entire bulletin from the NHTSA and I am hoping that this will help me understand the problem.
  • vali51vali51 Posts: 3
    Thanks a lot, noted. Will really appreciate to post the bulletin when u ‘ll get it.
  • mom3peggymom3peggy Posts: 8
    My lights came on again today. This time around, however, the situation reset itself and the lights went off. I will call the dealer tomorrow and find out what to do. I am almost to the point where I think I should trade in the car for another. PM
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