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Overkill on a CEL question


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29 replies to this topic

#1 The FNG

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Posted 30 July 2011 - 05:38 PM

Ok, so I am tired of looking at a flashing check engine light. I have found and fixed what I believe to be my current issues. I have searched and searched to try to figure this out, but it really is confusing to me for some reason :banghead:.

Can someone please help me figure out which plugs to connect and disconnect in order to read, diagnose and delete codes?

I do not have any brown or green plugs under the dash. I have these by the fuel filter: Posted Image.

#2 RapidElastic

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Posted 30 July 2011 - 06:31 PM

Mine are there also the newer models had them in the engine compartment. The green connectors will put it in test mode when connected and the white connectors clear the codes. They shouldn't be connected all the time though just when your trying to diagnose problems. Maybe that's why it keeps coming up? I believe to erase codes you connect the white connectors while the vehicle is off and then put the ignition on. The test connectors should be disconnected. If you need more info ill look in my book I'm going by memory.

#3 The FNG

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Posted 30 July 2011 - 06:57 PM

:headbang: I'll give you one of these because you are awesome. I will mess with them tomorrow when I get a chance. Thanks

#4 heartless

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Posted 30 July 2011 - 07:30 PM

there is a full write up in the USRM that will tell you how to read, diagnose and clear codes on these cars...

under "engine electrical", page 2, "Subaru ECU codes for 1983-1988"
(also applies to the Loyale models)

#5 The FNG

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Posted 31 July 2011 - 01:26 AM

there is a full write up in the USRM that will tell you how to read, diagnose and clear codes on these cars...

under "engine electrical", page 2, "Subaru ECU codes for 1983-1988"
(also applies to the Loyale models)


Ya, I read that, but it says for 1989 models, the connectors are on the engine side of the firewall on the driver's side, hence the photo. Then it refers to read only and self-diagnostics, but it does not tell you which one is which or how to really use them. So my question was to confirm I was looking at the correct connectors and to determine which connector was read only and which connector was self-diagnosis. Then I need to know the proper usage of them to read and clear codes. As you can see in the pic, both of the connectors are together. This is how I bought it and being new to all this Subaru stuff, I wanted to be sure before I go messing with stuff.

#6 heartless

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Posted 31 July 2011 - 08:24 AM

yeah, there are some minor missing details :rolleyes:

trying to pull the details out of my memory here - been a couple years since i messed with the EA82's...

first - neither set should be plugged in for normal everyday use.

Now, if i recall correctly, the green are the read memory, white is the self diagnostic (i wont swear to this, it has been a while, and someone else may correct me on this)

best way to check for codes is:
connect ONE set of connectors - check for codes
switch connectors (unplug first set, plug second set) check for codes again. (Make note of what color plugs are being used for which codes you get)

when all else fails, you can clear codes by disconnecting the battery overnight. :grin: seriously tho, by doing that you would have a fresh view of what is happening with your car.

BTW - your pic is "engine side of firewall on drivers side"
"engine side of firewall" = under the hood,
"drivers side" = left side of car as sitting in the drivers seat.

"firewall" = the "wall" separating engine compartment from passenger compartment.

Edited by heartless, 31 July 2011 - 08:30 AM.


#7 Gloyale

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Posted 31 July 2011 - 02:15 PM

Green = test mode. tests for current faults

White (or black for MPFI) = Read. reads stored codes. this is the most useful one.


BOTH Green and White toghether = CLEAR mode. Hook up both, run it til the CEL flashes...disconnect. codes cleared.

Leave both disconnected for regular driving.

#8 WoodsWagon

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Posted 31 July 2011 - 02:23 PM

Green = test mode. tests for current faults

Leave both disconnected for regular driving.

This is why the check engine light is flashing at you. You need to unplug those green and the white connectors. Not only will it cause the light to flash, when the engine is stopped it cycles the fuel pump and all the solenoids under the hood. It also locks the ignition timing advance so you can set the base timing, which driving it around like that it will loose a fair bit of power.

#9 The FNG

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Posted 31 July 2011 - 04:05 PM

It also locks the ignition timing advance so you can set the base timing, which driving it around like that it will loose a fair bit of power.


Haha, ya I noticed the power difference once I unplugged them plus it seems to run a bit better :banana:

#10 farfromiowa

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Posted 11 December 2011 - 10:40 PM

Thanks!!
I have been looking for the answers to those connectors for quite a while....

#11 the sucker king

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Posted 11 December 2011 - 11:00 PM

what year/car is this? Just curious. it looks like ea81 but I have never seen those connectors.

#12 The FNG

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Posted 12 December 2011 - 07:21 PM

91 loyale EA82. same as in my signiture.

#13 farfromiowa

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Posted 12 December 2011 - 08:30 PM

Green = test mode. tests for current faults

White (or black for MPFI) = Read. reads stored codes. this is the most useful one.


BOTH Green and White toghether = CLEAR mode. Hook up both, run it til the CEL flashes...disconnect. codes cleared.

Leave both disconnected for regular driving.


I hook both up, start it up and the light is off. Wait 2-3 minutes and the light comes on and stays on. No flash, no flicker, just on. Let it run for 5 minutes, solid light. Turned it off, unplugged both connectors and started it back up. Light came back on in about a minute with a code 35. So I think it is clearing it but it comes back because the problem has not been fixed. The new Purge control solenoid gets here tomorrow, hope it will clear the code.

#14 bigjimd

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Posted 12 December 2011 - 08:44 PM

Wheew! I hate troubleshooting this stuff. I'm really good at replacing parts but this injection stuff --yuck. Plugged both together - green and white started the car, no CEL, like you, no blink, flash or anything. Unhook and start back up have CEL while cranking then goes out at start and stays out. First time since we got the car running a couple of years ago. Have fitted solenoids from a Mazda that closed with power on and blocked airflow. So I think I'm good there it was throwing a 34 & 35. Still can't get the blasted thing to idle down. Good luck with yours, hope the new part does the trick for you. It's a 93 Loyale here.

#15 farfromiowa

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Posted 15 December 2011 - 11:35 PM

No Joy. New OEM purge solenoid, tried to clear multiple ways as posted here and in the manual. Nothing works. (except electrical tape over the light)

#16 bigjimd

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Posted 16 December 2011 - 12:04 PM

See that's what I'm saying. A pain in the butt.Have you checked the wiring? The insulation gets stiff and you may have broken condutors, or corrosion maybe.

#17 farfromiowa

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Posted 17 December 2011 - 09:20 AM

It is getting power to the solenoid, that is one of the first things I checked. the solenoid clicks like is is working (the old ones and the new one.)

#18 bigjimd

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Posted 17 December 2011 - 11:36 AM

Donnieru posted this on my question. Have you tried it this way?

(Hey. The green one is read memory for current issues. The white one is d-check to read old stored codes. The green is used to set the timing. Neither of them are supposed to be hooked together during normal operation. It causes the flashing CEL because of it being in test mode without timing advance and such. Connecting both clears the codes. They are used by being hooked up and the ignition put in the on position.)

Looks like you don't start it. Although I did.

#19 farfromiowa

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Posted 18 December 2011 - 09:57 AM

I read that same thread. And every other. And the Manual. Tried every combination. Tape works well

#20 bigjimd

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Posted 18 December 2011 - 02:31 PM

Yup tape works great! I worked on the Navy base out there once. What a great piece of country. Saw the Kinetic races at Prince William I think was the name of the island too trick!!

#21 hooziewhatsit

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Posted 18 December 2011 - 10:29 PM

I've traced my persistent EGR code (34) to a blown transistor in the ECU that switches it on. I'm not picky enough to open it up and replace it. :drunk:

#22 JEBalles

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Posted 27 June 2012 - 09:18 PM

Sorry to bring up a dead thread.

I've used the search function and I still can't actually find out how to read the codes. I see the plugs in the engine compartment on the firewall. My light stays on once I start the car. I tried plugging in the green plugs with the key in the drive position. Does the engine have to be running? The light just stayed on along with all the other lights. It does run funny, so I have a feeling it's related.

Does anyone have an explicit procedure to read the codes for an '89 SPFI EA82?

#23 86 Wonder Wedge

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Posted 27 June 2012 - 10:01 PM

I had the same "huh?" moment as well, AND the Haynes "Computer Codes and OBDI" book said the Loyale's (SPFI and MPFI) would flash the CEL on the dash-area rather than blink the tiny red LED on the ECU itself. But no dice.

First, remove the under-column cover (big kick panel covering ECU) OR go completely dark in a garage or dead of night so you can see the flashing red.

Look directly under the column, you'll see the ECU. There is a small hole to watch the red LED blink.

Without either green or white connectors connected, and KOEO (Key On, Engine Off), the ECU will flash starting/driving codes (critical codes like IAC, TPS, MAF, injector, starter circuit, ect).

With the green connector connected, KOEO, the ECU will display current non-critical codes (EGR, CTS, knock, timing, ect..) You should also hear the EGR, Canister Purge, and Fuel pump relays rhythmically tick on/off sounding like a grandfather clock.

With the white only, KOEO, it will display old/stored codes.

To clear, start the car, connect both green and white until the CEL blinks, then turn off, disconnect, then drive off.

This is no Subaru FSM data, but combined from experience and several different code retrieval books..

Edited by 86 Wonder Wedge, 27 June 2012 - 10:03 PM.


#24 JEBalles

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Posted 28 June 2012 - 08:03 PM

This helped, I didn't know about the LED. I got EGR valve (code 34) with nothing connected, EGR valve and O2 sensor (code 32) with the white memory plugs connected, and 5 with the green test mode connectors. The only place I find 5 is here:

http://www.ultimates...ad.php?t=121822

which implies that it's good. It says here:

http://www.ultimates...ead.php?t=49918

that a dealership technician can perform dynamic tests. What does that mean?

And can either a bad EGR valve or O2 sensor affect performance? Or are they only emissions related?

#25 jeffx

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Posted 29 June 2012 - 02:59 PM

Green = test mode. tests for current faults

White (or black for MPFI) = Read. reads stored codes. this is the most useful one.


BOTH Green and White toghether = CLEAR mode. Hook up both, run it til the CEL flashes...disconnect. codes cleared.

Leave both disconnected for regular driving.


My Chilton's is kind of vague on this and I can't find my FSM. How long does it usually take for the light to flash when clearing codes?




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