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1999 forester
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2 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 1999 Subaru Forester that I bought 3 years ago.
Not longer after buying it ( one week ) the transmission started slipping out of fifth gear. If I keep my hand up against the shifter it will stay in but I can feel it trying to force it's way out. As I don't want to damage the transmision any further I have not been using fifth gear. Makes for slow highway driving. I read of a similar problem on a toyota web site where the shifter sits in a plastic ring and the ring had cracked and was pushing the transmission out of gear. I was wondering if anyone has any suggestions. I took it to a transmission shop and was told it would cost $3000 to fix.
I'm hoping for a much cheaper fix.
 

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Premium Member
2009 Outback XT-B 5MT
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10,242 Posts
Slipping out of 5th is DEFINITELY the input nut coming loose. Save a broken 5th gear synchro, this is really the only thing that can cause popping out of 5th.

If you are handy with a wrench, you could try the fix. Or you could take it to a different shop than you already went to, with the info you need to tell them what you want them to do, and have them fix it.

Basically, you need to pull the rear two sections of the transmission off (to remove the center diff).

You need to put the car in gear, then with a torque wrench, torque down the nut on the back of the input shaft. Then you need to stake that nut into the groove on the shaft. You MIGHT (read: I would) want to use a new nut.

Theoretically, this could all be done with the transmission still in the car. It might be to your advantage, however, to have them pull the transmission and replace the clutch at the same time.

Then button everything back up, fill with fluid, and be on your way.

Welcome to the forums!
 

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2001 SOLD!
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1,412 Posts
Friend has a 2000 and his had the same symptoms. There is a TSB on this if I am correct. The picture below is the actual nut in my friends transmission. It backed out. The dealer has another type of nut to fix this problem. It can be repaired with the tranny on the car. You just have to remove the tail section to get access.

Here is proof!!! http://endwrench.com/images/pdfs/PoppingInfo.pdf

 

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1999 forester
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2 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Thanks for the Info. I had resigned to driving my forester as a 4 speed. I googled 1999 forester to look for a replacement muffler when a result for " won't stay in 5th gear " caught my I eye. I thought, finally, someone with the same problem. Then I said to my wife who was standing next to me at the time that It was probably an old post I had submitted some time ago. Then she noticed it showed some replies. So I clicked to see what they were. And I couldn't believe it. The answer I had searched and searched and searched for. Tomorrow I will go to the dealership to see about getting a nut. I'll have a go at it when I get chance. Change the transmission oil while I'm at it. Any recommendations on what type of oil ?
Muffler first.
On an unrelated matter I have a coolant leak at the back of the engine coming from one of the head gaskets. I have read Subaru has coolant conditioner made specifically for this. Does it work? has anyone tried using it ?
Thanks again to those who replied to my transmission problem
 

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Smooshed FOTY 2011
2005 Lifted 2.5 XT 5-Speed MT Dual-Range
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5,732 Posts
^^ The conditioner is preventative to keep a head gasket from failing. If you're already leaking, the head gasket needs to be replaced. If you have done engine work (spark plugs, changing out an alternator, replacing CV-Joints, that sort of stuff), then you can easily do the head gaskets yourself and save you $1000 worth of labor. It's easy, just time consuming.

There are MANY write ups on here on how to replace the head gaskets on older Foresters......with pictures even!

I find it easier (and faster) to just pull the engine, have the heads re-machined (if they need it), installed the new gaskets, bolt everything down, and re-install the engine. It literally takes 1 hour (quicker even on the N/A motors) to unbolt the engine from the tranny (6 bolts, 2 nuts) and disconnect all the wires and hoses (there's about 7 connections, and 8 hoses I believe) Pull the alternator, and put the power steering pump (still connected) off to the left of the engine bay, and the A/C compressor to the right. Engine comes RIGHT out and makes the gasket change extremely easy.

Whatever you do, good luck.
 

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1999 Forester
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1 Posts
man. mine was popping out of forth and fifth gears. tonight the transmission completely crapped out. smokes, makes bad noise and the car goes no where. let us know what happens when you get the nut on there!
 

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Forester 2.0 158hp 2006
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11 Posts
Hello everyone!
I live in Norway, where due to snowy winters the Forester is very popular, and this is my first post on this forum, I've been browsing and reading around, and it seems there's a lot of great people around, here :)
I've just bought a Forester 2006 model (2.0 158hp, five gears manual trans) which is showing just the symptoms described above, hence I thought (tell me if there is a better way) it could be an idea to wake up this old thread.
My first question: I read that this problem is known to affect 1999-200 Foresters, but might it affect 2006 models as well?
My car shifts to 5th smoothly (so I guess the synchro is fine), cruises fine until I release the throttle, but then systematically pops out of 5th.
And related question nr 2: the reverse may play really hard to get, but works perfectly once found. Is it a confirmation of the loose main shaft nut diagnose or does it point in another direction? As I understand it, both 5th and reverse live on the main shaft, and the fork pushes them in opposite directions, so it could make sense that the fifth won't hold (a bit too far to properly lock in), and that the reverse is hard (a bit too close)??
Have a great day all of you!
 

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Forester 2.0 158hp 2006
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11 Posts
Raahhh, shame on me, hadn't done my homework hard enough: found another thread confirming the loose nut issue on a Forester 2010 (('09-'13) - 2010 NA Manual Transmission slips...), so it seems the problem can happen on more recent versions.

The question that remains is: "does the hard reverse confirm the loose main shaft nut diagnose, or point in another direction"?
 

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Forester 2.0 158hp 2006
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11 Posts
Loose main shaft nut it was (once more). So the problem is definitely not only found on 1999-2000 models (mine is 2006).
Thanks to all, and especially to BAC5.2 for speaking loud and clear about the issue (y)
 
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