2011+ FB25 CEL and VDC light on briefly (P0301/P0302/P0303/P0304) - Subaru Forester Owners Forum
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post #1 of 392 (permalink) Old 10-10-2011, 09:38 AM Thread Starter
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2011+ FB25 CEL and VDC light on briefly (P0301/P0302/P0303/P0304)

Got a CEL and VDC light today while in the midst of a 3rd gear WOT kickdown.

When I had the code checked, it stated the engine ran too lean for a bit. Was this simply due to going from cruising at 30mph to nailing it to pass this other car at 60?

Both lights went out on their own after 2-3 seconds and the car is running fine. Thoughts? Is this just a case of a sensor detecting something out of range for a split second, then seeing that it's cleared up and shutting off the CEL and merely storing the code?

EDIT: Yes, I know the proper acronym is VDC but I am unable to edit the thread title.

Last edited by wolfzr2; 01-10-2012 at 07:40 AM.
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post #2 of 392 (permalink) Old 10-13-2011, 08:38 AM
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Originally Posted by wolfzr2 View Post
Got a CEL and VDC light today while in the midst of a 3rd gear WOT kickdown.

When I had the code checked, it stated the engine ran too lean for a bit. Was this simply due to going from cruising at 30mph to nailing it to pass this other car at 60?

Both lights went out on their own after 2-3 seconds and the car is running fine. Thoughts? Is this just a case of a sensor detecting something out of range for a split second, then seeing that it's cleared up and shutting off the CEL and merely storing the code?
I have the same problem with my '11 Limited. Next time I bet you get a full blown CEL to go along with it if you don't clear the temporary CEL.

My car has a whopping 1100 miles on it and has been back for service for this issue twice already. First time they thought it was a bad mass airflow sensor. Second time they had to consult SOA who informed them of an ECU Flash issue and provided a fix for it. Only problem is that it didn't fix mine. So now I'm stuck with a car that I can't take over 5k RPM until SOA figures out how to fix it.

If they are unable to correct the issue after the next attempt I will begin lemon law proceedings. To say I'm displeased is a massive understatement.
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post #3 of 392 (permalink) Old 10-16-2011, 08:55 AM
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My Forester did the same thing last night! It's only got about 450 miles on it, so I was thinking that maybe it had something to do with the car just getting broken in, but it appears that's not the case... hmm. I suppose I should take it in so that SOA is made increasingly aware that there is an issue to addres on these cars. Do you think it's hurting anything though?
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post #4 of 392 (permalink) Old 10-16-2011, 09:11 AM Thread Starter
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Mine has been fine since that lone incident. I've even tried to get it to do it, and it just runs fine. Numerous runs over 5k, no lights... I'm not worried about it.

Last edited by wolfzr2; 10-16-2011 at 09:40 AM.
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post #5 of 392 (permalink) Old 10-16-2011, 11:17 AM
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If they are unable to correct the issue after the next attempt I will begin lemon law proceedings. To say I'm displeased is a massive understatement.
Is there an engine running issue associated with the MIL? If not why worry. You will not have a case for arbitration if the car runs and drives well otherwise. When you have VDC and ASR on a car with a powerfull engine the DIC will light up like a christmas tree when driven very aggressively. Wait till winter! Initially this sounds Normal to me for all the vehicles ive owned with VSC/ASR. Now OTOH, I also have a new ford truck and the engine will skip, misfire backfire, blow black smoke in bad humid weather and no MIL is lit. Ford dealer says, "no MIL = NORMAL operation." I said, when does the MIL come on? When you are loading the dead vehicle onto a ramp truck? That's worse IMO, to a slighlty sensitve threshold setting you may be experiencing. Hopefully for you it's just a software update, pretend its windows XP. How good was that out of the box :) Now, KKOZMA, to understand better are you saying you have a MIL on constantly? or Intermittent during agressive driving?

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Last edited by AlleyCat; 10-16-2011 at 11:22 AM.
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post #6 of 392 (permalink) Old 10-17-2011, 07:03 PM
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Is there an engine running issue associated with the MIL? If not why worry. You will not have a case for arbitration if the car runs and drives well otherwise. When you have VDC and ASR on a car with a powerfull engine the DIC will light up like a christmas tree when driven very aggressively. Wait till winter! Initially this sounds Normal to me for all the vehicles ive owned with VSC/ASR. Now OTOH, I also have a new ford truck and the engine will skip, misfire backfire, blow black smoke in bad humid weather and no MIL is lit. Ford dealer says, "no MIL = NORMAL operation." I said, when does the MIL come on? When you are loading the dead vehicle onto a ramp truck? That's worse IMO, to a slighlty sensitve threshold setting you may be experiencing. Hopefully for you it's just a software update, pretend its windows XP. How good was that out of the box :) Now, KKOZMA, to understand better are you saying you have a MIL on constantly? or Intermittent during agressive driving?
Why worry? Because the car has 1200 miles on it. It's absolutely unacceptable that I've had it to the dealer twice for this issue and I've owned the car just over a month. It's not like I'm out there beating on the car here, it's too new for that, but 5k RPM is pretty easy to hit when merging on to a busy highway. When the CEL comes on, it's on and needs to be reset at the dealer unless I decide to buy a scantool at autozone to reset it myself, which on a brand new car is complete and utter BS. In the meantime I have no cruise control and the traction control doesn't work.

To add fuel to the fire, I took the car to Home Depot this weekend and when I went to leave it didn't want to start. Just cranked and cranked and cranked and finally sputtered to a start. I'm surprised the CEL didn't come back on after that nonsense. NOT normal. Even a little bit.

I got rid of my old car (2002 VW Beetle Turbo) because of phantom crap like this and to be honest, I liked that car a hell of a lot better. Buyers remorse indeed.
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post #7 of 392 (permalink) Old 10-18-2011, 07:03 AM Thread Starter
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Why worry? Because the car has 1200 miles on it. It's absolutely unacceptable that I've had it to the dealer twice for this issue and I've owned the car just over a month. It's not like I'm out there beating on the car here, it's too new for that, but 5k RPM is pretty easy to hit when merging on to a busy highway. When the CEL comes on, it's on and needs to be reset at the dealer unless I decide to buy a scantool at autozone to reset it myself, which on a brand new car is complete and utter BS. In the meantime I have no cruise control and the traction control doesn't work.

To add fuel to the fire, I took the car to Home Depot this weekend and when I went to leave it didn't want to start. Just cranked and cranked and cranked and finally sputtered to a start. I'm surprised the CEL didn't come back on after that nonsense. NOT normal. Even a little bit.

I got rid of my old car (2002 VW Beetle Turbo) because of phantom crap like this and to be honest, I liked that car a hell of a lot better. Buyers remorse indeed.

You have a legitimate issue, far different from mine in the OP. I would take it in, and have the dealer make it right ASAP. There is no sense at all in your acting this way. NONE.
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post #8 of 392 (permalink) Old 10-24-2011, 09:26 AM
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Originally Posted by kkozma View Post

... I took the car to Home Depot this weekend and when I went to leave it didn't want to start. Just cranked and cranked and cranked and finally sputtered to a start. I'm surprised the CEL didn't come back on after that nonsense. NOT normal. Even a little bit.
Starting to sound like inadequate fuel delivery. E10 garbage fuel ruined my new 11 ford truck. E10 woes continue to grow. Hopefully yours will be solved by a sensor issue. If not Fuel Quality is an easy suspect. Is the limited an Ej255 Turbo?

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post #9 of 392 (permalink) Old 10-24-2011, 10:39 AM
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Mine? No, it's a regular 2.5...

Still haven't heard anything from my dealer on the issue either. For an issue they told me is common, I'm having a hard time finding anyone else with the same problem. Don't know how much longer my patience will hold out.

At any rate, I use the same fuel in this car that I have used in every car I've owned over the last several years including two turbocharged VW's, so I doubt highly its a fuel quality problem.
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post #10 of 392 (permalink) Old 10-28-2011, 12:23 PM Thread Starter
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Mine just did it again briefly. Again, I had just floored it to pass a semi who weaved into my lane. Check engine light blinked for about 10 seconds and stopped. VSC light stayed solid for about 10 seconds.

They both went out, and I tried to replicate it.. ( another run to 5500 RPM ) and no lights...

Odd.
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post #11 of 392 (permalink) Old 10-29-2011, 11:51 PM
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My 2011 has done this twice now in 400 miles now.

I just bought a new 2011 2.5 X base model with a 5 speed, it had 56 miles on it at delivery.

The night we were driving it home it was raining and the CEL flashed several times. The next day it came on and stayed on along with the VDC light and the cruise light was flashing. I drove it straight to the dealer while it was still lit-up like a Christmas tree. Here is what they said on the repair order; "vehicle has trouble code P0301, found ECM reprogram for this fault, perform ECM programing".

It came on again two days later!

This car is my third Subaru & may be my last!
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post #12 of 392 (permalink) Old 11-04-2011, 03:49 PM
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I have the same problem with my 2011 touring. First time it was a ECM reflash. The second time they stated that SOA told them to test the gas and they said that the volatility of the fuel was to low. According to the dealer it was at .2 and the engine required .9. never had a volatility issue before.
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post #13 of 392 (permalink) Old 11-04-2011, 06:51 PM
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Fuel volatility sounds like pure BS to me.

I still haven't heard a thing from my dealer regarding the new ECM flash SOA is supposedly working on.
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post #14 of 392 (permalink) Old 11-05-2011, 10:38 AM
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Fuel volatility sounds like pure BS to me.

I still haven't heard a thing from my dealer regarding the new ECM flash SOA is supposedly working on.
I was skeptical about the diag as well and I plan on trying a differnat brand of fuel to see what happens. But is it possible that low volatility of the fuel could cause a misfire due to the fact the fuel is not atomizing effieciently.
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post #15 of 392 (permalink) Old 11-05-2011, 07:07 PM Thread Starter
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I was going to take mine in, but I cancelled. Running fine.

I'll wait until they have a new ECU flash.
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