Jump to content
Ultimate Subaru Message Board

Recommended Posts

Hi,

   I noticed that when braking the lights dim due to a voltage dip.  I'm a little concerned about that and I'm thinking it could be the battery, a voltage regulator, alternator or a bad ground somewhere....

 

What do you guys think?

 

 

Also, the lead that connectes the switch for the intermittent wiper pump (the one the goes in the hole dead center on the firewall) is severed...maybe that too may be part of the issue.

 

 

Thanks guys!

 

 

--Damien

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Alternator may be getting tired. Thing is, my car has done exactly the same for the past 4 years. Now that I say that the alternator will probably kick the bucket next week, but here's no real reason to rush out and buy a new alternator unless the problem gets worse, or the charge light in the dash comes on.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I hear ya.

 

Is it normal for CEL lights to switch themselves off?  I've been getting an EVAP code periodically but after a day or two the CEL automatically switches off...

 

Thanks,

 

--Damien

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

have the same dimming issue with my new to me 95 Legacy - not real bad yet, and weather has been very uncooperative. Was mentioned to me to check all grounds as well...

I do know that the battery in this car is getting kind of old - I should probably replace it sooner rather than later...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Yeah the battery in mine is old and a tired as well and I'm too lazy to blow 90 bucks for a good one.

 

 

It could just be how these cars are wired, too...they may develop similar symptoms across the board like that.  :-/

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am too broke to blow the $90 for a new one right now! LOL

 

still playing catch up after finally getting a job in September after being unemployed for 4 years :wacko:

 

Getting the 95 up and running ate up nearly all the reserve I had left. Wasting $500 on a junk tranny didnt help any... and no, I didnt get any money back on that one - the crooks! :angry:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I hear ya.

 

Is it normal for CEL lights to switch themselves off?  I've been getting an EVAP code periodically but after a day or two the CEL automatically switches off...

 

Thanks,

 

--Damien

Yes, my OBW has been doing that with the evap code. Pretty sure it is my gas fill pipe causing the problem. Recently removed it, sealed the rust holes best I could, only to have the CEL come on two weeks later, but the CEL turned itself off a few days back. However, I wouldn't be surprised if it reappeared.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I had a 99' Outback that I bought from a real sleeze who owns a subaru repair shop in Lakewood, CO and when he sold it to me I noticed the headlights would dim when I pressed on the brakes, I checked the battery and he had installed some off the wall tiny battery from who knows what, maybe a atv? Haha. It was amazing it worked, I went to advance and bought the correct battery for the car and it fixed that problem. Just my 2 cents.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A weak battery can cause the lights to dim more than they would normally with a good battery installed. It is a good idea to clean the battery connections and the main chassis ground connections to help stop voltage drops in the electrical system. Make sure the fan belt is tight and isn't slipping on the alternator. Costco has some decent batteries for around 70 dollars. You may what to get the charging system checked out when you do get a new battery to check the condition of the alternator output. Also have the AC ripple voltage checked to make sure the diodes are okay.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

well if the belt were slipping I reckon it would wear out pretty quickly....

 

I find the the EVAP code can be eliminated by really screwing the cap on tight...another thing that can cause it is excessive water/alcohol in the gas mix.

 

It seemed strange to me that the light would automatically switch off...I guess that's a built-in feature for the minor codes.  Something major I guess would stay illuminated.

 

Yeah probably the battery then...it's an old, cheap Walmart one...probably a decade old for all I know...

 

Cheers!

 

--Damien

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am too broke to blow the $90 for a new one right now! LOL

 

still playing catch up after finally getting a job in September after being unemployed for 4 years :wacko:

 

Getting the 95 up and running ate up nearly all the reserve I had left. Wasting $500 on a junk tranny didnt help any... and no, I didnt get any money back on that one - the crooks! :angry:

 

Glad you got a job back...sitting around at home twiddling your thumbs and putting up with the missus can be a real drag, I know.

 

Dealing with Le Car is a real art...the guys at the shop make it look easy...but give they customers stuff that's...well...real hard.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Glad you got a job back...sitting around at home twiddling your thumbs and putting up with the missus can be a real drag, I know.

 

Dealing with Le Car is a real art...the guys at the shop make it look easy...but give they customers stuff that's...well...real hard.

 

umm - I am the "missus" LOL (its ok - common mistake online ;) )

 

since I have to go to town tomorrow anyway, gonna run by Advance Auto and have them do a charging system check - see just how bad things really are. Yesterday was payday, so I might be able to swing a new battery if I need it bad enough.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

umm - I am the "missus" LOL (its ok - common mistake online ;) )

 

since I have to go to town tomorrow anyway, gonna run by Advance Auto and have them do a charging system check - see just how bad things really are. Yesterday was payday, so I might be able to swing a new battery if I need it bad enough.

 

You may be...but you may not be the only one.  :-)

 

--Dame Ian

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

hehehe

 

well, got the charging system check done - just as I suspected - battery is old and weak. Supposed to be 640 CCA - only registering 495...I see a new battery in my near future.... :huh:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

turns out the local farm & home store had batteries on sale this week - got myself a 72/24 month for $70 AND free installation and a $5 credit for the old battery!  And the best part - the headlights no longer dim when hitting the brakes!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Last time I was at tractor supply they had Exide (IIRC) batteries with 72 month warranty for about $79. That's about $50-60 less than a crappy parts store battery around here.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

turns out the local farm & home store had batteries on sale this week - got myself a 72/24 month for $70 AND free installation and a $5 credit for the old battery!  And the best part - the headlights no longer dim when hitting the brakes!

That was a good price on a battery @ $70. Glad your dim light problem is corrected.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That was a good price on a battery @ $70. Glad your dim light problem is corrected.

 

actually - early this morning I discovered the dimming isnt completely gone - but it is much less noticeable - as in barely there - really have to be watching for it to notice it. When the weather warms up enough that I can tolerate being out for more than a couple of minutes at a time, I will begin checking grounds...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A slight dimming of the headlights is normal. The alternator output drops down slightly at idle speeds so voltage at the battery also drops down some. What you are seeing is most likely from that but it is good to go over connections and clean them just to be sure they are okay.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just got my exhaust completely fixed today (there were numerous cracks and seepages in the nearly 15 year-old components) and it definitely alleviated that symptom tho it did not eliminate it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A slight dimming of the headlights is normal. The alternator output drops down slightly at idle speeds so voltage at the battery also drops down some. What you are seeing is most likely from that but it is good to go over connections and clean them just to be sure they are okay.

 

yeah - this car is relatively new to me and by the time it was road worthy (after Thanksgiving) it was already quite chilly out and temps went downhill from there - we have had 40 something days straight of below zero so I havent really been too motivated to really go over things yet. one of these days it will warm up (i hope...) :unsure:

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×