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Guest Message by DevFuse

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1st full day of 98 Outback Ownership!!!

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2 replies to this topic

#1 rockbass


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Posted 04 July 2004 - 01:22 AM

Hello all. First post on the new board (new for me anyway). I have been driving an 83 GL 4wd wagon for the last couple years. On the old ezboard site I went by the name "fuzzydice". I haven't been around since the move to this new site, but since I just bought a 98 Outback Limited yesterday I thought I'd get back on board. I learned a lot reading and posting in the older generation section. I'm hoping to learn as much in the newer generation section...and eventually contribute.

On my first day of ownership I had to solve two problems. The first was the drivers side window wouldn't go up (electric). I took apart the door panel and found that the motor-regulator assembly was only being held on by one of four possible bolts. The other three where MIA. The mechanism was out of position and a wire was frayed and shorting against the door metal! After fiddling about for a few hours I figured out that the switch mechanism was defective. Instead of running to the dealership and spending $112+ (quoted) on a new switch cluster I decided to take the unit apart and try to repair it myself. I found a small white plastic spring-loaded part had worn out. Since the part was symetrical I just flipped it around and put everything back together. It works great! Window problem fixed...for now.

While I was at the dealer (Carter Subaru in Shoreline, WA.) getting the missing bolts I had a chance to ask a service guy about a flashing 'check engine' light. He suggested looking under the dash and making sure nobody plugged a pair of green plugs together. He mentioned that these plasitic plugs where only used for diagnostic equipment connections. I found them connected. I disconnected them and the light went out. I can only hope he's right about that one.

Also, I had the battery checked because I've had to jump start the car three times in the short time I've owned it. After replacing the battery it seems to start every time.

Later that night my luck ran out. As I was on the freeway the car started to overheat (temp gauge pegged). I pulled over and noticed neither of the two radiator fans where running! I visually checked the fuse in the main fuse compartment under the hood and it seemed ok. The fans where working yesterday. My girlfriend drove the car about 50 miles from where I bought it. She didn't notice any overheating. I drove it earlier today and it didn't overheat. I was able to limp it home tonight...I may have to keep driving the old reliable GL for a while.

Could the famous HD problem cause the fans to stop? Doesn't seem logical.

Anyway, if anyone has any ideas why the fans aren't turning on please chime in.

#2 gbhrps


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Posted 05 July 2004 - 08:13 PM

I agree with you about the head gasket having nothing to do with the fans not working, but it could be the other way around, no fans=overheat=blown head gasket. You may be ok if you caught the problem quickly enough. I'm surprised that you didn't find the three missing bolts from the window regulator at the bottom of the door. Good luck!

#3 rockbass


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Posted 05 July 2004 - 09:05 PM

...but it could be the other way around, no fans=overheat=blown head gasket.

That was my first thought as well, but the next morning I thought I'd start the car, let it warm up and see what happens. I thought I could at least try to figure out why the fans wheren't kicking on. I let the car idle and when it reached operating temp both fans came on. After reading a few old posts here I peeked into the coolant res to look for bubbles and sure enough there they where. I shut the car off as I watched the temp rise above normal. I'm pretty sure now that it's a head gasket. I'm calling my Subaru mechanic (Smart Service) tommorow to try to get the car in.

I'm surprised that you didn't find the three missing bolts from the window regulator at the bottom of the door.

So was I because that's the first place I looked. Obviously someone had been there before me. I should've taken some pics...next time.

Good luck!


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