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98 Legacy Outback..Couple Questions


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8 replies to this topic

#1 XCR583

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Posted 08 August 2006 - 09:22 PM

Have had the car year and a half. Has 136,500 miles on it. 2.5 motor Normal cold piston slap at start up. Check engine light came on about 2 months ago. Took to local back yard mechanic. Scanned it and said it was knock sensor. Said he heard noise in engine. Wasnt there, dont know if here heard the piston slap or what he heard. Any thoughts on this?

Tranny has come out of gear so to speak climbing the same hill twice now. Once about a month ago and then again today. Have gone up this hill couple of times in between with out any issues. Both times, pull of to side of road, and drop it into 3. Auto tranny. After dropping it into 3, car goes again and once up the hill, shift back into D. Was going up the hill pretty good today. 75-80 mph. Car pool people were late again. Hill is pretty long. Car will shift several times up and down going up the hill. Also at times, feels like the car surges slightly. Also when slowing down to say 5 mph or so then getting back on the gas, car is slugish like it needs to shift down another gear but it wont unless I put it to the floor, then it will but it down shifts hard. Fluid is clean, at normal leave, no burnt smell or anything like that. May take to tranny shop tomorrow. Just wondering if you great minds had any ideas.

#2 jeep5.9litre

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Posted 09 August 2006 - 06:04 AM

When was the fluid changed last?

#3 mwatt

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Posted 09 August 2006 - 09:13 AM

Have had the car year and a half. Has 136,500 miles on it. 2.5 motor Normal cold piston slap at start up. Check engine light came on about 2 months ago. Took to local back yard mechanic. Scanned it and said it was knock sensor. Said he heard noise in engine. Wasnt there, dont know if here heard the piston slap or what he heard. Any thoughts on this?

Tranny has come out of gear so to speak climbing the same hill twice now. Once about a month ago and then again today. Have gone up this hill couple of times in between with out any issues. Both times, pull of to side of road, and drop it into 3. Auto tranny. After dropping it into 3, car goes again and once up the hill, shift back into D. Was going up the hill pretty good today. 75-80 mph. Car pool people were late again. Hill is pretty long. Car will shift several times up and down going up the hill. Also at times, feels like the car surges slightly. Also when slowing down to say 5 mph or so then getting back on the gas, car is slugish like it needs to shift down another gear but it wont unless I put it to the floor, then it will but it down shifts hard. Fluid is clean, at normal leave, no burnt smell or anything like that. May take to tranny shop tomorrow. Just wondering if you great minds had any ideas.



What Jeep5.9litre said is important. Fluid level and cleanliness are critical.
If the transmission "slips out of gear" like it was suddenly in nuetral, that's obviously not normal. To some extent however, the other symptoms you're describing ("hunting" from 4th to 3rd under load and having to floor the throttle to force a downshift at low speeds) are more common. Our '98 Outback and '99 Legacy GT do that. It's almost as if the shift parameters were designed for economy and not for performance .... these transmissions tend to upshift to the next gear early and they stay in higher gears at low speeds unless you force a downshift by flooring the throttle....
I've also noticed that on both of our cars, the more heavily loaded the car is, the more the transmission tends to downshift from 4th back to 3rd when the car is going up a hill at highway speed.......

#4 porcupine73

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Posted 09 August 2006 - 07:06 PM

yah there's a lot of parameters involved in determining when, why, and how the AT will shift. I think there might be a 'customer interest' bulletin out by Subaru on that; I could check if there's interest. Also not to be neglected is the locking and unlocking of the torque converter which can 'feel' like a shift especially if climbing a hill.

Anywho, anytime climbing hills, and often otherwise, I use the shifter to select the gear I want. Once you get a feel for the AT shifter it works very well. If you don't use the 1, 2, 3 settings often the shifter may feel really tight the first dozen times you use them. Spray some Kroil or Penephite down on the AT where that cable comes in and it'll free up like butter. I really hate the hunting when climbing a hill so I'll at least shift to 3 if necessary and really steep hills might require even lower gear (at far reduced speed of course). If you're climbing at 75-80mph, that's going to be a pretty good RPM in 3rd, maybe 5000 even.

I don't know about the 4EAT phase I (which I think your vehicle has?), but the 4EAT phase II (I think based on what I feel when driving it) not only will shift between 3rd and 4th, but will also lock and unlock the torque converter in both 3rd and 4th gear (3rd gear only when climbing a hill for a period of time from what I can tell). I couldn't figure out what it was doing the first few times this happened (at least I hope that's what's happening else maybe my trans has issues!)

#5 nipper

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Posted 09 August 2006 - 08:26 PM

Subaru trannies the torque converter locks in all gears.

Did you ever have the knock sensor replaced. The knock sensor adjusts timing and can do ver wierd things. Those weird things can translate into a confused tranny and poor shifting. knock and piston slap are two toally differnt things. Some things can not be ignored, this is one of them. Pay attention to your cel.

Also you can shift the tranny on the fly on any automatic car. There is no need to pull over (read any owners manual, they have been like that since the dawn of the auto tranny). You need ot learn how to use the tranny properly, its part of being a smart driver (especially in hilly areas). If there are a lot of hills ill put my car in drive 3 to give the car a break. This stops the hunting.

nipper

#6 XCR583

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Posted 10 August 2006 - 09:39 AM

The fluid had been changed some time before I had got it. Not sure when though. The fluid is pretty much at the proper level, maybe a LITTLE and I do mean a LITTLE over full. Maybe that has something to do with it. When I have pulled it into 3rd, I have not come to a complete stop both times. I guess I said it wrong. Both times I have pulled off onto the burm and then shifted it into 3. The first time I was almost stopped, because I didnt know what had happened for sure. I was more figureing that the tranny had completely gone. I took it to a tranny shop last night, they are supposed to check it out today.

As far as the knock sensor, I didnt have it replaced yet. The garage that I took it too, said to just drive it because they were hearing a noise in the motor and didnt think it was worth it to replace the knock sensor. I am not sure if they just didnt want to mess with it or what bucause I am not hearing no new noise since When I get it back from the tranny shop, I will take it to someone else who is more experienced with Subarus. I have found out there is a guy around here that worked for the Subaru dealer for years that has now gone on his own.

Thanks for the replies.

#7 nipper

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Posted 10 August 2006 - 09:45 AM

The fluid had been changed some time before I had got it. Not sure when though. The fluid is pretty much at the proper level, maybe a LITTLE and I do mean a LITTLE over full. Maybe that has something to do with it. When I have pulled it into 3rd, I have not come to a complete stop both times. I guess I said it wrong. Both times I have pulled off onto the burm and then shifted it into 3. The first time I was almost stopped, because I didnt know what had happened for sure. I was more figureing that the tranny had completely gone. I took it to a tranny shop last night, they are supposed to check it out today.

As far as the knock sensor, I didnt have it replaced yet. The garage that I took it too, said to just drive it because they were hearing a noise in the motor and didnt think it was worth it to replace the knock sensor. I am not sure if they just didnt want to mess with it or what bucause I am not hearing no new noise since When I get it back from the tranny shop, I will take it to someone else who is more experienced with Subarus. I have found out there is a guy around here that worked for the Subaru dealer for years that has now gone on his own.

Thanks for the replies.


this is why you need somone who knows suabrus. That noise they heard was probably regular subaru engine noises. Change the knock sensor. Do not take the trannies shop word for if they say you need a new tranny. if the tranny is not slipping its working fine.

nipper

#8 grossgary

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Posted 10 August 2006 - 09:52 AM

be a great idea to change your transmission fluid.
installing a transmission cooler is a great idea too, particularly with all the hills and hunting for gears that your transmission is seeing.

if the car is hunting for a gear, keep it in the lower gear until you're up the hill or just loose speed until you get to the top of the hill. if it's shifting back and forth multiple times going up steep hills, that's not great for it.

#9 XCR583

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Posted 10 August 2006 - 11:31 AM

this is why you need somone who knows suabrus. That noise they heard was probably regular subaru engine noises. Change the knock sensor. Do not take the trannies shop word for if they say you need a new tranny. if the tranny is not slipping its working fine.

nipper


I will post later today what they have to say. There is really only the one big hill that I have to climb on the way to work. Will get the fluid changed. Will also start pulling it into the lower gear when I do go up this hill. Thanks again!




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