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Old 02-24-2011, 06:58 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Buzzing noise from rear while vehicle shut off

First post on this forumn. After 30 years of car ownership I recently purchased my first Subaru, a 2011 Forester 2.5X. Nice car, my wife loves it, only has about 1300 miles on it. I went into the garage last night to get something and heard a buzzing noise coming from the rear of the Forester. It had been sitting in the garage turned off for at least 4 hours. The noise kind of reminded me of when the antenna motor on another car I had did not shut off when the car was turned off because the switch had gone bad.

I popped open the rear hatch then lifted and removed the spare tire cover. The noise was coming from the upper left (as I faced the rear of the car) of the area around the spare tire. Right behind the rear passenger seat. There was a plastic cover over where the noise was coming from so I couldn't see what was there. There was room to stick my hand under the bottom of the cover, so I felt around to see if I could determine what was buzzing. But I had not luck. While I was poking around the noise stoppped. It had been making the noise as I walked in the garage. I don't know how long it had been running before I went to the garage but until it stopped, it was probably 3 -5 minutes that I heard it.

I started up the car and took it for a drive to make sure everything was OK. It started and ran fine. When I brought it back there was no noise. I checked it several hours later and there was no noise.

Anyone know what this might be? It was definitely a very consistent electric buzzing noise. I am first of all concerened because it happened and I don't know what it is. I am also concerend because if this continues, it could run the battery down and strand my wife.

My first thought is that might be where the electronic fuel pump might be but I have no idea why it would be running after the car had been turned off four more than 4 hours.

The car is an X model without many options. Allow wheels, auto dimming mirror. No heated seats or anything that should be active while the car is turned off.

I thought I'd try here rather than go to the dealer because it's not very convenient to get there.
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Old 02-24-2011, 07:05 AM   #2 (permalink)
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A guess: unscrew the gas cap and see if the buzz disappears......

Pressure in the gas tank slowly relieving after the car is shut down?

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Old 02-24-2011, 07:21 AM   #3 (permalink)
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The area you were poking around could certainly be the location of the fuel pump and I suppose the relay (not sure of the precise location on a SH model) thats the area under the rear seat on an SG model. Maybe shine a flashlight in the area to see if that provides any benefit to determining whats under there.

I'd keep an eye (ear) on it after your next few drives. And as Steve suggests check the cap, it does need to be tight to prevent a CEL.
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Old 02-24-2011, 07:50 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Good Lord........you mean I might have been right????????

Pardon me but WHOO HOO!!!

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Old 02-24-2011, 12:20 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Pretty sure on the SH that the fuel pump is in fact on the drivers side of the car rather than passenger side in older models. It should be a bit to the left between the spare and rear seats, so it does sound to be the area your noise was coming from.

Try opening it up again and looking at that area while you have someone turn the key to on (this should cause the fuel pump to run and "prime" for a few seconds without actually starting the motor so you can hear a bit easier) and see if you get the same noise from the same area.
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Old 02-24-2011, 03:32 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I appreciate the suggestions.

I tried the gas cap when my wife got home and it was tight.

The location decribed above sounds exactly where the noise was coming from. As I face the rear of the car, to the upper left hand corner, directly behind the drivers side of the rear passenger seat.

Last night when I thought it might be the fuel pump I tried the test mentioned above also. I turned the key to the on position but didn't hear the noise althought it took me a few seconds to get back to where the noise had been.

If it is the fuel pump what would be the explanation for it running four hours after the car was shut off?
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Old 02-24-2011, 05:31 PM   #7 (permalink)
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What you're hearing is the fuel evaporation leakage checking system. It's totally normal and nothing to worry about -- see page 9 of your owner's manual.
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Old 02-27-2011, 01:00 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Thanks so much for the reply on the fuel evap system noise. You are absolutely correct, there it is on page 9 of my manual. Even mentions that it happens approximately 5 hours after the vehicle is turned off.
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Old 10-06-2011, 10:27 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Post Video with Sound ... BTW...Hi Everyone!

I just took this video to show the "problem"... luckily, I read page 9 after seeing SubaruForester . org responses...THANKS GUYS!
youtube DOT com/watch?v=-w5PJyW2Jfw

Sorry for the link this way ...I'm not a spammer but forum rules / software won't let me post full and correct link, and I think it may be interesting to many...
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Old 12-15-2011, 08:03 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default That's exactly what happened the other day to my 2011 2.5X Forester!

Thanks Porkpie for the information. First the ABS reset and now this evaporative leak check. Man I wish there was a quick reference guide to all these weird things. They don't bother me once I know what they are. As long as my Forester lasts without any engine or transmission problems past 100,000 miles then I'll be sold on Subaru for sure. I've given up on Ford, Dodge, and Kia for transmission problems. I'm gun shy now when it comes to a new vehicle.

Last edited by Mav; 12-15-2011 at 08:13 AM.
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Old 05-11-2012, 04:57 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Nevermind. Once I replied all the other posts showed up and I saw the answer.
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Old 01-04-2014, 04:50 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Thanks for posting this. I have been wondering what the noise was on the back of our new 2014 forester. Was also worried about it draining the battery on one of these very cold Minnesota days.
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Old 01-19-2014, 04:08 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by porkpie View Post
What you're hearing is the fuel evaporation leakage checking system. It's totally normal and nothing to worry about -- see page 9 of your owner's manual.
Walked into the garage tonight and the Forester was humming exactly as described in the original post.

Thanks for this post! I too was worried about something draining the battery down.
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