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pginter96

98 forester flashing ATF TEMP light, inop speedometer, related and unrelated DTCs

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Hi all,

I've got a 98 forester that's got me scratching my head.

tl;dr speedometer inop, DTC P1507, P1540, trans code 22 and 33. First time on the road drove fine just no speedometer/odometer and flashing ATF TEMP light. Now wont idle at all. Could loss of speed/trans signal be related and do any of these share powers/grounds? Full story below, lots of electrical gremlins leading up to where I am now. Worried previous owner smoked a controller while chasing their tails.

Long story:

1998 Forester S automatic. Bought it from someone who put a trans in it, said it ran for 20 minutes then stalled and wouldnt re-start. He chased his tail for over an hour, poking wires (yikes) and replaced ignition coil, igniter, and removed and installed the intake manifold a few times to check stuff. Couldn't get it started and pushed it into a field where it sat for 2 years, then I bought it.

Found the obscure fuse by the drivers knee for ignition system blown, owner told me the ignition coil "started growing a thing that looked like one of those firework snake things you light on the sidewalk on 4th of july" when it stalled so I suspect that was the initial problem. Also found folded over intake gasket. The passenger carpet is pulled up and the ECU is exposed, the ground wire has its insulation burnt off, and theres a spare ECU next to it on the floor.

Replaced fuse and gaskets (and timing belt because I thought it jumped a tooth) and it would run and drive, but stall more often than not on idle. ATF TEMP light flashing, get code for loss of engine speed (24? Cant remember) which is hopelessly vague. Found car would stall/run when playing around with MAF sensor connector. Replaced wiring connector, pigtail, and MAF. Now runs and drives. 

Drove up and down the driveway, speedometer inop. Checked to make sure connector on trans was plugged in, ok. Replaced the ECU with the spare since it was there, no change. Swapped back to what I believe is the original.

Drove it for the first time on the road today (due to blower motor inop, unrelated electrical problem) and apart from the speedo not working it drove fine. After the first few stops, it stalled or would barely run and threw a code for P1507. I had this before on my old legacy when the IACV went. But it also had a code for P1540 Speed sensor 1, and I checked trans codes as well and it had code 22 no pressure signal and code 33 speed sensor 2 signal. Seems kind of strange to have so many trans codes, and loss of trans signal can cause idle issues.

Do any of these trans outputs share a power or ground?

I have no history on the condition of the trans previous owner put in, but it drives/shifts fine and I doubt theres a mechanical issue. It even still grabs 4th gear with all of the codes. 

I'm working with very limited wiring diagrams, and being the one year '98 phase I dummy transmission doesn't help. I have the remnants from when the front diff gernaded in my 01, complete center and rear section with all the sensors if I need to swap, but the speed sensors appear different between phase I and phase II 4EATs. 

Apart from load testing wires what's the best way to go about testing these sensors with basic stuff? 

EDIT: THE CAR KNOWS IM SEARCHING FOR HELP. NOW ITS ANGRY AND WONT START. (Seriously though no crank, no start. Checked connections, all ok.)

Edited by pginter96

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I'm not sure I can help, but with no replies yet I can hear you twisting in the wind and feel your pain.

One of the wonkiest faults I've dealt with was after swapping a new motor into a '99 Outback.  I won't relate the whole saga, but cut to the money shot.  I'd managed to leave untightened the most obvious ground, which is also the one that's not documented in the factory manual:  The one on top of the intake, next to the coil pack.  The symptoms were that the 3-4 shift point kept drifting all over the place and it was throwing all kinds of spurious TCU errors e.g. complaining about not being able to commmunicate with the ECU.  Bad grounds will kick your @$$.

You've tried the ECU swap.  If you can lay your hands on a spare TCU (I'm lucky enough to have a couple of very cheap self-serve yards nearby) you might learn something by swapping it in.

But the "no crank" thing is a different level altogether - that's not a complicated circuit.  If the connections are good, there's not much left other than battery, starter, and keyswitch.  Can you force it to crank by applying +12 to the solenoid input?

Edited by jonathan909

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50 minutes ago, jonathan909 said:

I'm not sure I can help, but with no replies yet I can hear you twisting in the wind and feel your pain.

One of the wonkiest faults I've dealt with was after swapping a new motor into a '99 Outback.  I won't relate the whole saga, but cut to the money shot.  I'd managed to leave untightened the most obvious ground, which is also the one that's not documented in the factory manual:  The one on top of the intake, next to the coil pack.  The symptoms were that the 3-4 shift point kept drifting all over the place and it was throwing all kinds of spurious TCU errors e.g. complaining about not being able to commmunicate with the ECU.  Bad grounds will kick your @$$.

You've tried the ECU swap.  If you can lay your hands on a spare TCU (I'm lucky enough to have a couple of very cheap self-serve yards nearby) you might learn something by swapping it in.

But the "no crank" thing is a different level altogether - that's not a complicated circuit.  If the connections are good, there's not much left other than battery, starter, and keyswitch.  Can you force it to crank by applying +12 to the solenoid input?

Thanks for the reply! You hit the nail on the head, I figured out a few of the issues a couple days ago when I looked at it after walking away for a while. Whoever ham-fisted the new transmission in broke all the lock tabs off the connectors and used the air intake plenum bracket instead of the actual transmission case to ground the transmission. I zip-tied the connectors together and moved the ground to a more suitable location, starts runs and drives but still no speedo and will stall after driving and coming to an idle. I'll have to keep chasing the speed sensor issue to see if it's related to the idling. 

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So now that it's more-or-less running, what codes are you getting?  I'm assuming that you're doing the count-the-blinks thing to get the xmission errors.

 

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33 minutes ago, jonathan909 said:

So now that it's more-or-less running, what codes are you getting?  I'm assuming that you're doing the count-the-blinks thing to get the xmission errors.

 

Trans code for speed sensor 2 and CEL for P1507

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Are there actually two speed sensors?  I seem to remember chasing that around and only finding one.  Or is the one generating the error completely internal to the xmission?

 

Edited by jonathan909

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Hey...good luck fixing all this stuff.

 

I'm particularly interested in the Transmission codes and how you got them.  I've got a 1996 Impreza Outback AWD 2.2 and I tried a procedure get the codes from the transmission and nothing blinked.

Interestingly enough..nothing blinks when I try to pull ABS codes.  

 

So...if you can pass on some info on how you got your tranny codes I would appreciate it.

 

NH

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doubt I can help much but, with all that work and poking around, you need to confirm the IACV hose is connected at the intake end - causes inability to idle if loose/leaking. Easily left off or knocked loose.

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On December 21, 2018 at 10:27 AM, navyhoosier said:

Hey...good luck fixing all this stuff.

 

I'm particularly interested in the Transmission codes and how you got them.  I've got a 1996 Impreza Outback AWD 2.2 and I tried a procedure get the codes from the transmission and nothing blinked.

Interestingly enough..nothing blinks when I try to pull ABS codes.  

 

So...if you can pass on some info on how you got your tranny codes I would appreciate it.

 

NH

Key on,

shift to 1

key off

key on

shift from 1 to 2

back to 1

then 2

then 3

atf light should blink from there

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Well today I was able to diagnose the speed sensor, turns out the cluster is to blame. Someone swapped it from the wrong year, so the signal wasn't going where it should. Also found out as a result the low mileage of 91k is wrong, according to carfax it actually has 213k 

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28 minutes ago, pginter96 said:

Key on,

shift to 1

key off

key on

shift from 1 to 2

back to 1

then 2

then 3

atf light should blink from there

Thanks for the tip, I will give it a try later tonight

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I do not believe that my 1999 has had the cluster swapped, but I am having similar problems...

I will try the trans code flashing soon.....


1999 OBW limited, the speedo goes in and out, cruise control will still work.... when turning cruise control on, it will sometimes jump the speedo to work.   I have already done the extra little ground wire on the speedo circuit board.    I THINK that it already had the problem prior to me swapping a new transmission (I never drove it before swapping the trans).  of course, with the speedo not working, the miles do not show on the odo or trip correctly.  Just yesterday, I had it back out and put some dielectric grease on the pins from the circuit board to the speedo as the ones in the straight line didn't seem to have a tight grip..... I accidentally bumped the parking light button and the lights were on for 8 hours, so I have to charge and wait to see if that helped anything.

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