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Subaru engine repair questions and answers

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  • jhmcneil
    jhmcneil - 1999 Subaru Forester - Engine - 4/20/2015
    Should I get my Subaru head gasket replaced or just sell the vehicle?
    I am positive I already asked this, but I cannot find it. 122,000 miles and no check engine light, but a bad oil leak from the passenger's side, but as far as I can tell, not a coolant leak, nor anything leaking into the coolant. The exhaust looks "clean." The ...
     
    • Jimm
      4/20/2015 Jimm
      Have these two inexpensive tests performed to determine the extent of the repairs needed; cylinder leakdown and cylinder compression test.

      If just the cylinder head gasket set is needed; try these on-line vendors: www.autopartswarehouse.com, www.partsgeeks.com, www.rockauto.com - to name only a few. They list the cylinder head gasket set from around $70.00 for your vehicle. Be sure to also replace the cylinder head bolts at the same time; these kits will cost around $44.00 - same sources.
      Jimm
      4/20/2015 jhmcneil
      Thank you very much!
  • howard
    howard - 2011 Subaru Forester - Engine - 4/18/2015
    When I try to start my car it won't start. Switch turns and all the lights blink off an on.
    I can't put my Windows up either an gauges go up an down than stop halfway an stay their. Their is a new battery in car.
     
    0 answer
  • Chuck
    Chuck - 1997 Subaru Legacy - Engine - 3/26/2015
    Why does it keep stalling?
    The car runs for 2-4 minutes but then starts to buck a little then stalls.
     
    • Jimm
      3/26/2015 Jimm
      First step - have the stored fault codes or check engine light scanned - for free - at any local auto parts store; Advance Auto, Auto Zone, NAPA. Then, post a reply as 'add answer' with the specific code for more assistance. There may be a fault code stored in the OBD memory which may not be displayed as a check engine light.

      Do not skip this important first step - there are literally hundreds of possible fault codes. Avoid wasting/ throwing money at the problem.

      Possible Causes of Engine Hesitation or Stumble:

      Dirty fuel injectors (cleaning the injectors often fixes this)
      Dirty air filter (change filter)
      Dirty / clogged fuel filter (change filter)
      Bad MAP (manifold absolute pressure) sensor
      Bad TPS (throttle position) sensor
      Bad or dirty MAF (mass airflow) sensor
      Low fuel pressure (leaky fuel pressure regulator or weak fuel pump)
      Vacuum leaks (intake manifold, vacuum hoses, throttle body, EGR valve)
      Bad gasoline (fuel contaminated with water or too much alcohol)

      Sometimes, what feels like a hesitation is actually ignition misfire rather than lean misfire. The causes of ignition misfire may include:

      Dirty or worn spark plugs
      Bad plug wires
      Weak ignition coil
      Wet plug wires
  • viking
    viking - 2008 Subaru Tribeca - Engine - 3/15/2015
    Car battery doesn't keep charge why?
    Car battery doesn't keep a charge I put a new battery in and that didn't solve the problem. If I turn it off I'll need a jump each time it is turned off.
     
    • Jimm
      3/15/2015 Jimm
      First question - what is the alternator output at idle speed and at 1200-1500 RPMs?

      Using a multi-meter, measure the voltage across the battery posts with the engine off. It should be 12 or 12.5 volts. If it is less than 12 volts, then the battery needs to be charged, something is draining the battery.

      If the battery voltage is around 12 volts, then start the engine and again measure the voltage across the battery posts. It should have increased to 13 or 14 volts if the alternator is working and charging the battery.
      If the battery voltage did not increase with the engine running, then verify the alternator and battery have good electrical connections. Make sure the battery cable terminals are tight and free from corrosion. Look for loose connectors or frayed cables. Use the multi-meter or a test light to verify the body of the alternator is grounded (zero resistance between the alternator and negative battery post).
      If the battery voltage is well above 14 volts with the engine running, then the alternator could be producing too much current and overcharging the battery. Maybe the voltage regulator (internal to some modern alternators) is bad. Or the battery is weak and a vehicle computer has temporarily raised the voltage limit. It might still also be bad connections or loose wiring. Some vehicle lights being brighter than others can be a symptom of this type of problem, because the alternator produces more energy to overcome the resistance of a bad wire or connection.
      The condition of the alternator belt is the next thing to check. Of course make sure the belt is not broken. Also look for a belt that is loose and slipping. It would probably be making noise. Look also at the idler pulley and belt tensioner.
  • Hordz
    Hordz - 2000 Subaru Legacy - Engine - 3/5/2015
    Why does my dash flicker and then the engine cuts out?
    I have a 2000 Subaru Legacy B4 and was wondering if anyone could help me. When I start my car the E brake and battery lights are on and then a couple minutes later the abs light comes on and the dash starts flickering and the it starts shuttering and cuts out? Any ...
     
    • Jimm
      3/5/2015 Jimm
      Have the charging system tested - for free; any local auto parts stores. This is the first step. The charging system performance test includes; the battery, alternator and associated wiring.

      There may be a loose / worn alternator drive belt or belt tensioner, poor negative (ground) cable connection, among other possibilities.
  • Aileen_vivian2605
    Aileen_vivian2605 - 2004 Subaru Forester - Engine - 3/3/2015
    Why does the car hesitate when I step on the gas?
    Sometimes has no acceleration and violently jerks whilst driving
     
    • Jimm
      3/3/2015 Jimm
      First step - have the stored fault codes or check engine light scanned - for free - at any local auto parts store; Advance Auto, Auto Zone, NAPA. Then, post a reply as 'add answer' with the specific code for more assistance. There may be a fault code stored in the OBD memory which may not be displayed as a check engine light.

      Do not skip this important first step - there are literally hundreds of possible fault codes. Avoid wasting/ throwing money at the problem.

      Possible Causes of Engine Hesitation or Stumble:

      Dirty fuel injectors (cleaning the injectors often fixes this)
      Dirty air filter (change filter)
      Dirty / clogged fuel filter (change filter)
      Bad MAP (manifold absolute pressure) sensor
      Bad TPS (throttle position) sensor
      Bad or dirty MAF (mass airflow) sensor
      Low fuel pressure (leaky fuel pressure regulator or weak fuel pump)
      Vacuum leaks (intake manifold, vacuum hoses, throttle body, EGR valve)
      Bad gasoline (fuel contaminated with water or too much alcohol)

      Sometimes, what feels like a hesitation is actually ignition misfire rather than lean misfire. The causes of ignition misfire may include:

      Dirty or worn spark plugs
      Bad plug wires
      Weak ignition coil
      Wet plug wires
  • IdahoBelle
    IdahoBelle - 1997 Subaru Legacy - Engine - 2/23/2015
    My check engine light is on and my car hesitates when I try to accelerate, what could be the problem?
    As listed above, I have a Subaru Legacy 97. I just bought her a year ago and the previous owner had just put in a brand new engine. She doesn't really drive abnormally, except she kind of fights me when I try to accelerate. There is more tension in the gas pedal ...
     
    • Jimm
      2/23/2015 Jimm
      First step - have the stored fault codes or check engine light scanned - for free - at any local auto parts store; Advance Auto, Auto Zone, NAPA. Then, post a reply as 'add answer' with the specific code for more assistance. There may be a fault code stored in the OBD memory which may not be displayed as a check engine light.

      Do not skip this important first step - there are literally hundreds of possible fault codes. Avoid wasting/ throwing money at the problem.

      Possible Causes of Engine Hesitation or Stumble:

      Dirty fuel injectors (cleaning the injectors often fixes this)
      Dirty air filter (change filter)
      Dirty / clogged fuel filter (change filter)
      Bad MAP (manifold absolute pressure) sensor
      Bad TPS (throttle position) sensor
      Bad or dirty MAF (mass airflow) sensor
      Low fuel pressure (leaky fuel pressure regulator or weak fuel pump)
      Vacuum leaks (intake manifold, vacuum hoses, throttle body, EGR valve)
      Bad gasoline (fuel contaminated with water or too much alcohol)

      Sometimes, what feels like a hesitation is actually ignition misfire rather than lean misfire. The causes of ignition misfire may include:

      Dirty or worn spark plugs
      Bad plug wires
      Weak ignition coil
      Wet plug wires
      Jimm
      3/4/2015 IdahoBelle
      I don't quite remember the code itself, but the mechanic said something about my MAP and vacuum leaks.
  • SGudgel
    SGudgel - 1998 Subaru Legacy - Engine - 2/18/2015
    Should I get my headgasket replaced on my Subaru outback or just sell it?
    It's a 98, it has 240,000 miles on it. The water pump froze this winter and I had to get that changed, a new timing belt, and a temperature valve or thermostat changed. I drove it for almost three hours after it was repaired and it overheated and died. Now it ...
     
    • Jimm
      2/18/2015 Jimm
      Get quotes for necessary engine repairs -the cylinder head gasket set is around $18.00 - parts alone of course. Does not include the labor.

      You will ultimately make the decision to repair or replace based on cost, and considering overall condition.
  • SGudgel
    SGudgel - 1998 Subaru Legacy - Engine - 2/18/2015
    Should I get my Subaru head gasket replaced or just sell the vehicle?
    It's a 98, with 240,000 miles on it. The water pump froze this winter so I had it replaced along with the timing belt, temperature valve and thermostat. After it was repaired I drove almost three hours in it and it overheated and died. Now it won't run more than ...
     
    • Jimm
      2/18/2015 Jimm
      Get quotes for necessary engine repairs -the cylinder head gasket set is around $18.00 - parts alone of course. Does not include the labor.

      You will ultimately make the decision to repair or replace based on cost, and considering overall condition.
  • hatamama66
    hatamama66 - 1999 Subaru Legacy - Engine - 2/12/2015
    High pitched squeal and chirping while engine is running
    The symptom is constant warm or cold, driving or stopped. It started four days ago gradually more noticeable since. Check engine light comes on intermittent and no other warning lights appear. Sometimes the odometer and speedometer will briefly not register. 170,000 ...
     
    • Jimm
      2/12/2015 Jimm
      Several possibilities; worn / faulty drive belt tensioner, belt misaligned, other belt-driven component worn bearing.

      Have you raised the hood to listen and inspect the source of the noise for yourself?
  • Nikolai
    Nikolai - 2000 Subaru Impreza - Engine - 2/6/2015
    Please help this is a video concerning my problems read description for more details https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JVf
    HELP ive tried everything what else could it be
     
    0 answer
  • Nikolai
    Nikolai - 2000 Subaru Impreza - Engine - 2/5/2015
    Https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JVfCjd3D4Uc
    if you watch this video this is my exact problem with my subi please help!
     
    0 answer
  • Nikolai
    Nikolai - 2000 Subaru Impreza - Engine - 2/5/2015
    Https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JVfCjd3D4Uc
    if you watch this video this is my exact problem with my subi please help!
     
    0 answer
  • tristan
    tristan - 2006 Subaru Impreza - Engine - 1/25/2015
    Check engine light came on. code reader said Sec Air Inj Sys Switching Valve stuck Closed Bank1
    was wondering how serious this problem was
     
    • Jimm
      1/25/2015 Jimm
      P2441 = Secondary Air Injection System Switching Valve Stuck Closed Bank 1

      Possible causes:
      - Faulty Vacuum Switching Valve (VSV)
      - Vacuum Switching Valve (VSV) harness is open or shorted
      - Vacuum Switching Valve (VSV) circuit poor electrical connection
      - Faulty Pressure Sensor
      - Faulty Air Switching Valve

      What does this mean?
      When is the code detected?
      If the Engine Control Module (ECM) receives the pulsation signal from the sensor despite the ECM ordering the VSV to close the air switching valve, or if the ECM has not received the signal from the sensor despite the ECM ordering the VSV to open the valve, the ECM interprets this as a fault in the secondary air injection system and the code is set.

      Possible symptoms
      - Engine Light ON (or Service Engine Soon Warning Light)
      P2441 description
      To accelerate the activation of catalyst when warming up the engine, the air injection system pumps the secondary air to the exhaust manifold by pressure. The secondary air is supplied by the air pump and it is pumped to the exhaust manifold through the air switching valve. Open and close movement of the air switching valve is regulated by the Vacuum Switching Valve (VSV).The air pump and the air switching valve are observed by the Engine Control Module (ECM) and are used to detect malfunction in this system. The ECM monitors the secondary air injection system and detects malfunction using a pressure sensor located on the air switching valve.

      The ECM observes the pressure in the secondary air passage using the pressure sensor located on the air switching valve in the secondary air injection system. The sensor detects an exhaust pressure in the secondary air passage.
  • Les burns
    Les burns - 2005 Subaru Forester - Engine - 1/20/2015
    What is wrong when cruise light &check engine light comes on at same time?
    Just got inspected last week and passed/ has 114000 miles, nothing sound bad from engine and seems to run fine.
     
    • Jimm
      1/20/2015 Jimm
      The check engine light is located on the dash and stays on if the computerized engine control system detects an engine performance or emissions problem.
      Have the check engine light tested / scanned for free - most local auto parts stores do this service for free.