Last post on Mar 07, 2013 at 10:38 AM
You are in the Subaru Legacy & Outback
What is this discussion about?
Subaru Legacy, Subaru Outback, Wagon
#1 of 406 check engine light
Sep 09, 2007 (2:38 pm)
If you are reading this message, you probably know what this is all about. You have gone through multiple 'check engine' light episodes, have replaced multiple oxygen sensors, and are on your third or fourth catalytic converter. I had a 2004 Legacy wagon with 80,000 mi, and my friend (still) has a 2004 Outback. We both have had the same experiences, so these problems are certainly not isolated incidences. In fact, my mechanic told me that has seen all kinds of creative means to disable the 'check engine' light. However, if you live in New York State and need to pass the annual emission test, you will have no choice but to fix the problem. In my case, I also had a transmission replaced, and had a cruise control problem that was unfixable (Subaru started an investigation, but were unable to find the causes of the problem). To retain my sanity, I finally traded the car in on a BMW and took a financial hit.
#2 of 406 Re: check engine light [dswiss]
Sep 10, 2007 (10:44 am)
What were the codes?
O2 sensors won't fix it. Spark plugs, spark plug wires, and maybe an ignition coil might. The coil is only $80 and there's only one for all 4 cylinders.
Tell your friend to try that. It's worked for other Edmunds.com members.
Honestly, you just need to find a better mechanic.
#3 of 406 2001 Subaru Legacy Check Engine Light "N/A"
Sep 15, 2007 (4:58 pm)
I'm working on an '01 Legacy (140K miles) for a friend. The check engine light is lit, but the code reads "N/A?" I can clear the code, but it comes back after a few minutes. The car runs fine cold, but is a little sluggish just off-idle when warm...once you get it rolling at speed, it feels fine. I've checked the plugs, air cleaner, cleaned the throttle body, battery connects and given it a general look over...I see nothing obvious. With this kind of mileage, he doesn't want to invest a ton in it. Anyone ever run into this error? Thanks in advance for your help...MT
#4 of 406 Re: 2001 Subaru Legacy Check Engine Light "N/A" [turbotato]
Sep 17, 2007 (9:45 am)
No, and I'm really surprised there would even be such a code.
I wonder if paisan has seen it before, paging paisan...
#5 of 406 Re: 2001 Subaru Legacy Check Engine Light "N/A" [ateixeira]
Sep 17, 2007 (10:01 am)
Makes me wonder if it is simply a problem with the scanner reading the code properly.
#6 of 406 Re: 2001 Subaru Legacy Check Engine Light "N/A" [xwesx]
Sep 17, 2007 (10:03 am)
I have an Actron one, pretty simple, but if anyone's in the DC/MD/NoVA area and needs one they're welcome to come by.
#7 of 406 Re: 2001 Subaru Legacy Check Engine Light "N/A" [ateixeira]
Sep 17, 2007 (10:06 am)
Well, what I am wondering is whether the scanner has some hardware limitations that make it not 100% compatible with the Subaru OBDII system. It may be an OBDII scanner, but that does not mean it has all the code compatibility.
#8 of 406 Re: 2001 Subaru Legacy Check Engine Light "N/A" [xwesx]
Sep 17, 2007 (4:13 pm)
Yup Wes beat me to it, it's the scanner not having all the Subaru OBDII codes. Often times this happens with cheaper OBDII scanners.
#9 of 406 Re: 2001 Subaru Legacy Check Engine Light "N/A" [paisan]
Sep 18, 2007 (2:59 pm)
Thanks for the feedback guys. The scanner is a fairly cheap one (~$100), but I've never run into a car it couldn't scan yet...there's always a first. I get so many requests to scan cars from folks at work that I always carry it in my backpack. Wierd how it will clear the code....but it comes back once the car has been driven about 5-10 miles. Another garage told the owner that the code comes back for a bad knock sensor. I haven't looked at it again, but the owner says that the knock sensor is tough to get at...Anyone been there done that? Thanks again for the help...MT
#10 of 406 Re: 2001 Subaru Legacy Check Engine Light "N/A" [turbotato]
Sep 18, 2007 (4:50 pm)
I doubt it would have issues with all codes generated by the car's computer, but some of them are manufacturer-specific. I would not think the knock sensor to be one of those. In fact, it seems to me that a knock sensor problem would cause more of an issue while the car is cold than warm! Maybe I am just not thinking it through well enough though. How about airflow sensor? Input is bypassed from that circuit until the operating cycle reaches a preset temperature.
The knock sensor is mounted on top of the engine, just slightly on the right side (looking at the car from the front), and near the back of the block. It is somewhat underneath the intake manifold. It is not overly difficult to access, but it is a tight space - especially plugging it in!
Keep us posted with what you discover, please!