Last post on Dec 06, 2011 at 12:51 PM
You are in the Subaru Legacy & Outback
What is this discussion about?
Subaru Legacy, Subaru Outback, Wagon
Apr 15, 2003 (1:01 pm)
Bad-mouthing a brand with vague references to your problems is trolling. Now you're beginning to offer more info and you're more likely to get information and help, despite your tone.
I'll invite you to read back a few hundred posts, look at how many people I've helped. Check the Problems topics too. They all had one thing in common - they were polite.
If the design was faulty they'd all do that, and they don't. My dad has an Outback like yours. We have a 2002 Legacy with the same hardware on yours, and I also have a Forester.
Subaru uses a dual-stage brake booster. Some call the feel "spongy", but it allows for smoother stops when you apply light pedal pressure, because only the first booster kicks in. Brake hard and the second kicks in. If you read reviews Subaru's brakes are consistently shorter than average for their respective class, so once you get used to the feel, they're very effective.
Bleeding them will not necessarily make them feel any different.
You are feeling the ABS kicking in too aggressively, so there are a couple of things you can try. First is to practice threshold braking, i.e. applying only enough pressure to stop without skidding and kicking in the ABS.
Second, you can remove the ABS fuse to at least help troubleshoot the problem. That's clearly not a permanent solution, but it will help you give more information to your dealer to help resolve your problem.
Finally, I suggest you work with your dealer and not against them. Choosing to not believe that they bled the brakes will not help.
Of course, check that all the tires are properly inflated, and that their circumferences are more or less equal (no more than 1/4" variation). ABS sensors look for differences in rotation to kick in.
If it does happen, pump the brake pedal once, as Dave suggested. That should stop the ABS from pulsing.
#8128 of 11746 fedupobowner and faulty brakes
Apr 15, 2003 (1:02 pm)
You have been asked to explain the "total brake failure" many times.
You said "ZIPPO, no brakes at all, the car just kept sailing along even though my foot was on the brakes".
What did you hit that got you finally stopped?
What kind of damage or injuries?
I am getting a very fuzzy feeling that you are leaving something crucial out of this story.
Apr 15, 2003 (1:04 pm)
Have you been able to recreate the problem with the dealer or a factory rep? I know that manufacturers (ALL, including Subaru) can be difficult at times but believe it or not, they do try to work with customers. If the problem cannot be recreated while in the posession of the dealer, about the only thing to do is to try to establish a pattern as to when it happens (speed, temperature, moisture, uphill/downhill, curve, etc.) and what are the symptoms (brake pedal goes to the floor, pedal pulsates, etc.) and provide that information back to them.
I had a '96 and currently have an '03 (no problems to date). Also, my Mom has an '02 Outback will no problems. I'm not implying that your's doesn't have a problem, but instead implying that not all Outbacks have bad brakes, bad seats, etc.
As Karl and Dave (hypov) and others have said, we can work this out if you give us a little more information.
Apr 15, 2003 (2:14 pm)
The overall tone of this board (and indeed all Edmonds Town Hall pages) is one of good will and good manners. It is unfortunate that Genevieve has not recognized the tacit code of good behaviour that applies to all posters to these boards. Flaming over multiple boards with variations on the same theme has also annoyed some readers. Other users are, reasonably, offended by those lapses. I am sure it was not intentional and we can all forgive her some grumpiness. I am certain that it will not be repeated.
On occassion, each of us has purchased a product that fails to match our expectations. That may be through a defect in the product or some difference between our expectations and the product's performance. If the former, it is reasonable to seek recourse from the manufacturer/ supplier.
If the latter, we either have to recognize the difference and learn to live with it or seek to replace the product with one that more closely matches our requirements. However, we should recognize that it was our choice, not some third party's responsibility
In the present case, Genevieve has made assertions as to the performance of the brakes on her Outback although the detail of the apparent non-performance is unspecificed. She also seeks to personalize her dispute by referring to staff at the dealership and the SOA rep in derogatory terms.
It is unclear whether Genevieve's brake complaint reflects the designed progressive brake action (from the dual stage system which initially feels fairly soft but then becomes much stiffer) or a genuine failure of the braking system.
Given the breadth of experience shown on these boards over some years now, it seems that a brake failure is a very low probability event. I have noted some posters referring to the softness of the brakes but never any mention of any real failure. I therefore am very doubtful of the assertion that the brakes have failed. If they have in fact failed, that event should be reproducible.
I would anticipate that the caution felt by the Subaru agents may reflect a similar doubt.
Equally, the alleged failure to respond by Subaru of America appears unusual, given other experience of posters to these boards. From time to time, there have been problems with vehicles, sometimes not adequately addressed by the local agent and Subaru appear to have addressed each of these appropriately. That is not to say that every customer is happy with the outcome but the issues have been addressed on each occassion.
It appears unlikely that a genuine complaint to Subaru of America would not be addressed, based on that experience.
I work in a customer facing position. From time to time, I have customers whose expectations are unreasonable. Within reason, we will accommodate them but there are some customers whose demands are well beyond reasonable bounds and cannot be addressed. Commonly amongst these customers, I find that the difficulty stems from an inability to recognize the shortcomings in their own arguments or to compromise appropriately. Inevitably, any option offered to them, other than settlement on their exact terms, will not be acceptable. Emotionally, they will always feel a loser unless they win every point.
If they do win their argument, they will enjoy a smug sense of satisfaction and continue to complain about the process, feeling they have been hard done by on that count.
The supplier's response is frequently to agree to the customers immediate demand but to ensure that future demands are not met. Effectively, a customer who only sees a single transacation relationship will not benefit from a future favourable trading relationship.
For these rare individuals, there is limited merit in seeking to negotiate. They are unlikely to ever achieve a successful outcome and must seek appropriate professional advice. As a rule, I recommend against using lawyers, but for this personality type, it is the only viable course.
Accordingly, I believe that the sensible course to be followed is to approach a local consumer assistance group or your local attorney. If they can assist, they will.
If however, you are advised that you do not have an adequate cause of action, respect that advice and do not come wailing to the world. We will not believe you.
Apr 15, 2003 (2:18 pm)
Here you go:
which means it is the brake master cylinder, not air in the lines. So the dealer *did* probably bleed the brakes. Perhaps the recall came in after you went in for service, and you didn't get the notice in the mail yet.
Snail mail is much slower than the internet.
Mystery solved. It affects 02/2003-03/2003 production only (check your door jamb). I'd pull the ABS fuse until you get it fixed.
#8132 of 11746 re: faulty brakes
Apr 15, 2003 (2:22 pm)
fedup: You don't even know me or the circumstances or safety risks I've been put at because of Outback faulty designs...
This is your opportunity to tell us all about it!
We are most fortunate to have some very knowledgeable people in this forum and they are more than willing to share their wisdom and help out.
Now ... back to our regularly scheduled program ...!
Apr 15, 2003 (2:35 pm)
Apr 15, 2003 (3:15 pm)
You can also go to nhtsa.gov and search for campaign ID 02V079000. Took me about 15 seconds on their site to find it. I looked for Subaru, Outback, 2002, brakes...bingo.
#8136 of 11746 98 Outback auto transmission shifting problem
Apr 15, 2003 (4:38 pm)
My 98 Outback with auto transmission will not shift out of 1st gear until about 20 - 25 mph sometimes as high as 30 mph, (I have to really rev out the engine), then it goes into 3rd instead of 2nd gear. After it's shifted into 3rd If I move the shifter into 2nd it slips bad. This only happens when cold, Once it's warmed up, (about two or three minutes of driving), everything works fine. Does anyone have any experience with this type of problem?