Last post on May 14, 2013 at 12:13 PM
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#231 of 580 Are there lights in 98 Subaru airflow panel?
Jan 08, 2007 (12:06 pm)
I own a 1998 Subaru Legacy Outback. When I bought it (used) the airflow control panel buttons are not lit at night. I just assumed it was normal but now I"m wondering if there should be lights under there? There are lights on the radio controls and the gauges all light up. If there are supposed to be lights in there, is there an easy way for me to fix it or is it dealer only? If someone has done this before could you please let me know or e-mail me AmarookJuno.com Thanks!
#233 of 580 96 Outback electrical issues after engine swap
Mar 08, 2007 (2:37 pm)
Me and my dad have been restoring a salvaged 96 Outback that had had an engine fire caused by a thrown rod that hit the fuel rail and burned up most the electrical under the hood.
Well we got a new engine for it and a new wiring harness. Instead of dealing with the nightmare of rewiring everything beyond the firewall we cut the wiring harnesses about ten inches into the engine compartment and matched the wires up. We managed to get almost all the wires properly reconnected, but there are two red/yellow wires coming from the inside of the car that do not have matching wires to connect to. In addition to that, there are two grey coaxial wires that we determined were for the O2 sensors. One of them is fried from shorting out all the way into the car and locating the other end of it to run a new one would require removing the dash. Don't know if that's worth it. Also there is no way to determine which coax goes were because the two are identical.
The only wires that remain to be connected are a few coming from two switches on the transmission, the wires to the O2 sensors and the two unaccounted for red/yellow wires.
We plugged everything in and decided to see if it would fire up. When we reconnected the battery we noticed that the parking lights as well as the dash lights were blinking, 30 times, pause, 30 times... and so on with or without the key in the ignition. The engine did turn over but it would not fire so we decided to check for spark and fuel. We discovered that the car is not getting any fuel and there is no spark either. Thinking maybe the computer needs to be reset?
At this point we are pretty much dead in the water and really need some experienced advice. Anyone who has any ideas would be very appreciated. This whole project has already gone well over original estimates and I'm afraid professional electrical diagnostics may cost us a tremendous amount. PLEASE HELP!!!
#234 of 580 Re: 96 Outback electrical issues after engine swap [simplecj]
Mar 08, 2007 (3:54 pm)
From what year was the replacement engine and wiring?
In general, it is most advisable to retain the original wiring, sensors, etc., and match it up to the replacement engine, but obviously you cannot do that in this case. A Haynes manual for this year includes wiring diagrams for most (if not all) electrical systems, though I will admit that the diagrams listed did not match up precisely with the wiring in my '96... the color coding on some of the wires was not the same. Without wiring diagrams and knowing whether all the sensors on the replacement engine are compatible with the 96's ECU, it could be a long, arduous task to get it to run.
the oxygen sensors provide feedback to the fuel management system, so it is important to get them into operation. It is a shame that something so seemingly mundane as a small fire could result in a total loss on a vehicle, but alas, you now see why it can be more trouble than it is worth!
#235 of 580 Re: 96 Outback electrical issues after engine swap [xwesx]
Mar 08, 2007 (5:21 pm)
The wiring and engine are for the same year and model car. I know exactly what you mean about the wiring diagrams not matching the wire color codes. I tried tracing out the O2 sensor wires to determine which wire went to the front sensor and which goes to the rear sensor, but the color codes don't match the connection to the ECU and there's no indication of exactly where it should be on the main connection. Many wires are the same color as well and figuring out what is what seems to be next to impossible. In fact looking from the replacement harness and the existing harness in the interior, they appear to be different colored wires in at least four wires I attempted to trace. And why did they have to put the ECU in a place that is next to impossible to get to without tearing the dash apart?? It's visible from the passenger side with the glove compartment removed, but the wiring is inaccessible and it cannot be removed with the dash in place. This car may be alot of trouble to fix, but we're already into it too far to stop. It's down to electrical and I'll be damned if I'm defeated by wiring! I realize that it might not run correctly without the O2 sensors connected, but would that cause it to not run at all? O2 sensors in my opinion are the most useless and troublesome things on a vehicle. My Elantra still runs too rich and spits out error codes despite $$$ in diagnostics and new sensors...
#236 of 580 Re: 96 Outback electrical issues after engine swap [simplecj]
Mar 08, 2007 (6:44 pm)
The oxygen sensors should not prevent the car from starting, as they do not come into the feedback loop until it reaches normal operating temperatures. Upon start up, the car should run on a "closed loop," meaning it uses stored (or default) data to manage the fuel mix. But, there are a myriad of sensors that must be working properly in order for that to happen. I am not sure all that are involved, so perhaps Steve (fibber2), Craig (c_hunter), or one of the other fellas can provide additional feedback. You need to have the mass airflow sensor; the fuel... um, fuel trim sensor? not sure what that one is called...; the knock sensor, cam position sensor, and crank position sensors all functioning correctly for starters. I am pretty sure there are at least one or two more. A multi-meter might help you there, assuming you have something that tells you the proper voltage at which all of those sensors should run. Oh, and just out of curiosity, is there power to the fuel pump? Probably a silly question, but just a thought...
Boggling that there would be differences in harness wire colors and quantities if both sides are from the same year, model, and engine. Consistency, people, consistency!!!!!
#238 of 580 97 Legacy Wagon - Headlight Issue
Apr 14, 2007 (2:08 pm)
Anyone experience this headlight issue: LF headlight very dim; high beam does not work. RF headlight operates normal. Interesting sidebar: Fog lights do not go off when high beams activated. Just replaced the LF headlight socket due to melting, thought that would cure the dimness, but it did not. Any ideas?
#239 of 580 Re: 97 Legacy Wagon - Headlight Issue [pmack]
Apr 16, 2007 (8:09 am)
Hmm, that's what I would have done, too.
Are the bulbs stock wattage? i.e. 55 watts? Some bulbs draw up to 120 and that could be the cause.
#240 of 580 Re: 97 Legacy Wagon - Headlight Issue [ateixeira]
Apr 16, 2007 (4:59 pm)
Headlights at OEM. They are the Sylvania Blue stock 9003. Subaru parts guy said they sell a lot of sockets for this car (MANY melt). But he buys them at NAPA, a generic version, then sells those to avoid having to replace the entire harness assembly which includes the socket and wiring harness back to (my guess) the relay box under the hood.