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Guest Message by DevFuse

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What is "torque grab"?

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6 replies to this topic

#1 duane b

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Posted 04 September 2003 - 01:39 PM

And how do you fix it?
We have a 96 Legacy AWD AT wgn. Bought it, drove perfect, took it on a road trip 2000+ miles. Now it's a little lurchy when turning tight ratio turns and sometimes on acceleration. Not bad but definitely increased since we bought it a couple of months ago. I could see it getting worse as time goes on. I've noticed it in several Legacys we test drove. It scared me away from them to the car we decided on. Now we have it. I was going to have a tranny service done but if it might be something else I would like to know. Thanks.

#2 Legacy777



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Posted 04 September 2003 - 02:53 PM

I think the official term you're looking for is torque bind. First thing I'd do is put the FWD fuse in to confirm it is the transmission. If the binding goes away with the fuse, then try a transmission fluid change as a first solution.

#3 rezmutt


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Posted 04 September 2003 - 03:51 PM

I had the exact same torque bind (grab) issue with my 98 Outback Wagon. I cured mine by changing the front and rear differential oil, as well as the transmission fluid. I did all three at the same time, without driving the car in between, so I can't say for sure which it was, but I bet it was the automatic trans fluid. The old fluid probably had never been changed, and was almost brown. By the by, changing the auto fluid also made it shift a lot smoother.

After I bought my Outback from a private individual in Flagstaff Arizona, I took it to the local dealer to ask about the issue. Two men there told me it was a normal function of the AWD system. I didn't believe them one bit, but I figured they told me it was normal because they probably thought I'd bought the car from them, and was complaining. Thanks to further investigation, and the people on this message board, I was able to clear it up with a simple oil change.

You also need to consider your tires. If they are not all within 1/4 in size, similar symptoms may arise.


#4 intrigueing


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Posted 05 September 2003 - 11:47 AM

First check your tire pressure, then check tire circumference, new fluids may help, but often the cause is tire pressure or circumference problems.

#5 remarcable


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Posted 05 September 2003 - 12:42 PM

Whenever I've had a tire low on air or punctured I notice the torque bind before I notice the low tire. Make sure all four tires are of the same circumference and have the same air pressure.

I filled the front and rear differentials with synthetic gear oil of the appropriate weight and it really smoothed things out.

#6 efgarro


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Posted 05 September 2003 - 01:51 PM

Indeed, you can find additional information by searching under the term "torque bind" in this forum. I also found information through Google.com search engine. Just install a 20 amp fuse which disables transfer of torque to the rear wheels. This fuse is located in the right side (passenger side) of the engine compartment. It is a little black box clearly labed "FWD". I have the same problem and I still haven't found the solution. Based on what I read thus far, the solution could be as simple as assuring the right tire pressure, changing the fluids on both diffs and the trannie, and as severe as replacing the "Rear extension housing" which contains the transfer clutch. It is my understanding that there was a design flaw in the 96 models which was fixed half way through 97. I have a 96 myself.

Hope this helps.


#7 duane b

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Posted 22 September 2003 - 11:38 AM

efgarro, you are the prize winner for the week! I took the car into Subaru, they pulled the code "27". They said it was 'probably' the Clutch pack or some such thing. It will cost $1400! Nice car. I did however fix the torque bind problem with a tranny service and fixed a rear tire with a slow leak. It shifts nicer too. But the "AT OIL TEMP" light keeps flashing the code, even after resetting the computer. I don't know if I should just sell it and hope I get what I paid for it. Or drive it 'til the clutch pack dies and buy a used one from a '97. Hmmm...:cornfuzz:

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