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So, I lurk on theses forums often, looking for advice on small repairs. But this issue has me stumped.

My 95 Legacy had a broken rack and pinion (its a long story) and the steering would bind terribly when turning. With winter coming up, we decided we best fix the issue, as it is the daily driver and that seemed incredibly dangerous. We pull the rack and pinion, and replaced it. Now, the steering is fantastic, but the engine dies randomly. Everything just shuts off, quiet as can be.

At first, it happened when test driving the new steering. Check engine light flashed, dash when manic. It died and would not even crank. Disconnected the battery, waited 30 seconds, and the car fired fine, and drove home. Watching it run, everything seemed fine. The next day, going to work, it died after a shallow corner, and same thing, only disconnecting  the battery would get it to fire, but this time no dash light weirdness. Once at work, it died when parking. So, I fired it up, and pressed the pedal down to see what would happen. Rpm's started acting strange, wrong readings, jumping up and down while the engine sounded as if it was at slightly fast idle. Lots of smoke, (though this could be because we flushed the power steering fluid when replacing rack and pinion, there was some nastiness).

Got someone to follow us home, and the car was fine, until we crossed the highway. Rpm's spiked, without giving any power, almost like a tranny issue?? But it subsided, and did not die until we got just the the end of the driveway. (About forty minutes.) Now, when pressing the break pedal, the temp sensor spikes.

Confused, i did some research, thinking it might be the ECM, but I am starting to doubt that. It was having a little trouble starting, and I dismissed that as colder/wetter weather.

Could this be the MAF? IAC? Alternator? Cam or Crankshaft sensor? I thought IAC but the highway lurch convinced me otherwise.

When idling in park in runs fine and I can't get the problem to repeat when it isn't being driven. I am assuming it's electrical at this point, but I don't really know where to start... Do I check grounds, pull sensors? Is there a solid explanation for why it will run fine for a minute after unplugging the battery? I don't have a scanner that will read OBD1, so codes are a little out of reach.

Any and all input is greatly appreciated, this Sooby has been in the family awhile and I hate the thought of loosing it. Thanks.

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Thanks. It's getting dark here, so I looked but didn't dig too deep. Didn't seem to see any chafing in any of the wires... Possible loose ground?

Swapped the MAF and it does the same thing, so if it is a sensor, it isn't that one.

Tomorrow I'll attack the electrical, I suppose, and see if I can't find anything odd.


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If you had the check engine light, you have codes in the ECU.  You have two connectors under the drivers dash.  Green and Black single connector.  Hook up the black connector, and then turn the ignition on and count the CEL flashes.  Fast and slow.  Fast = 10, Slow =1.  Lots of info on doing this on the USMB and web.

If it started happening after the steering rack work, I would guess they did something.  

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OBD2 actually worked... Ive had a strange time with scanners before but the newer one is apparently much more reliable. Pulled codes P0100, P0101, and P0505. MAF, MAP circuits and IAC malfunction...

Is it a load of crap that 95s ran on OBD1? Or am I just lucky?

Electrical/scanning and such really isn't my strong suit. I much prefer the labor intensive side of mechanical work.

So, now best bet is to check the circuit between MAF and ECU? I already swapped for another MAF and had no change.

505 says IAC... Is that wiring on the same circuit as MAF?


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So, after checking all vaccum lines, checking some fuses and cleaning all grounds, only left with MAP sensor code. The other two codes went away after cleaning and tightening the ground off the negative battery terminal. And when running the car acts a heck of a lot better. I'm guessing bad ground was the reason for IAC and MAF codes, but only time will tell.

Scanner detected MAP was getting nothing in live data. The wiring is clean, no weird bends or such, and has power. so the sensor is caput, as far as I can tell?

Anyone know if replacement with a used one is a bad idea? The price difference is kind of surprising. If I could spend $25 instead of $80 I can't say I would mind.

I really appreciate everyone's input.

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there is a special spray cleaner for MAFs, you could try cleaning it first, there are delicate wires and maybe the Int. Air. temp sensor inside.

even a tiny peice of a leaf can throw it off.

there have been some MAFs with poor construction inside (intermittent solder connections) and a new sensor may be a good idea.

Edited by 1 Lucky Texan
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The code P105 is for the Pressure Sensor. You will find it on the front of the strut tower behind the air filter box. It is the one with 3 wires on the connector. Check those vacuum lines. There should be a label on the hood for vacuum routing.

I would find a used one and replace it first. If that does not fix the code, you will have to check voltages on it and the ECM that the 3 wires connect to. They are in the FSM under Diagnostics.

BTY, OBDII was mandatory 1,1,96 on all US cars and light trucks. Subaru started in 95 for most models.

You can download the FSM (Factory Service Manual) for free on the following links. I donated to both. I preferer the zip file, but the other site has other sections that can be very handy. Click Parent Directory to go back.

Here as one zip file.

Here as individual files.

Pressure sensor wiring.jpg

Pressure sensor.jpg

Edited by Rampage
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16 hours ago, IdMtnGirl said:

Is it a load of crap that 95s ran on OBD1? Or am I just lucky?

yeah, load of crap. 90-94 were all OBDI - but 95 began the OBDII era for Subaru.

It is not perfect, but it does work.  If you ever run into connection problems, check the pins to make sure they are all out where they are supposed to be.. sometimes one or two get pushed back in the housing and don't make connection right. just need to push them back forward where they belong. (the panel that the connector is mounted on can be removed to access the back of the plug)

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