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2001 Forester S auto
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey all,

My clutch was not engaging in extended city use , possibly due to age and the metal expansion in the heat. I tried to remove one of the shims in the clutch assembly using the Mr. Subaru method to reduce the air gap. Could not find any hardened M5 bolts. I tried with hardware store metric bolts, but should have known better than to use those. after tightening to force the disc off, one of them snapped and became stuck. At this point could I use a hacksaw to cut the bolt through the air gap so it can at least go back to being partially operational until I can get it to a shop?

In the worst case, would it just need a new clutch kit to permanently fix this?

Thanks for any advice.
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'14 Forester XT Touring
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That's a bit of a pickle.
Welp, worse cause you need to take off the a/c unit out and have it worked on.

If you still want to DIY it, you need to remove the a/c unit, at lest so you can get a drill or an easy out bit. You might be able keep the lines connected, not sure how much slack you'll have to play with. Unless you want to drain the Freon.
Maybe spraying some PB Blaster behind hit might help slide out?

Or you can rigging up something with a slide hammer, or trying again with shorter but harden bolts again, then using a pry bar on the broken side to wiggle it out?

Good luck.
 

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2010 X Limited, 2.5L NA, 4AT. Purchased as the second owner in 2020 with ~126K miles.
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You've still got two good holes. Like Mr. AC says, use those to install jacking bolts and a gentle pry bar in place of the third. The trick will be to jack a little, pry a little, loosen, start again. This is not going to come off like the video. Don't force it, don't try to jack it all at once. It might take you half a day.
 

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2001 Forester S, 4EAT
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@SueBrew I would consider the idea of a new clutch kit if I was in your shoes. I also did the hack for the clutch air-gap and got it to work. But my only concern is at this point, is there is not much clutch material left and eventually I'll have to install a new clutch. The hack for the air-gap is only delaying the inevitable.
 

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2001 Forester S auto
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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
@bman400 there's a kit available for around $50. But what tools would I need to remove the old one and install the new one? Perhaps it's not a DIY project?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Well, some progress it seems.... I managed to pry off the clutch plate by hammering in two big screwdrivers on opposite sides, and when the gap was too large, I pried it at an angle with a small crowbar. The splines look to be in good shape still I think... I have no idea where all those blue paint flakes came from. Now on to the hidden C clip.
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2001 Forester S auto
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I got it all off yesterday and ordered the new kit. In the 1st gen models there is not enough clearance to remove those three pesky Phillips screws holding the electro magnet onto the compressor body. Removing the fan assembly is almost mandatory to get clearance for those screws
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If you're dealing with the original screws from 20+ years ago, then penetrating oil, and a bulky ratcheting Phillips bit screwdriver should do the trick.
Definitely worth putting on anti-seize on the new ones.

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The original NSK bearing on the pulley still seemed to be in great shape, and was spinning without any noticeable resistance.

The pulley mounting shaft (is that what it's called?) edges got a little roughed up when I pried out the snap ring. Not a major issue, right?
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2010 X Limited, 2.5L NA, 4AT. Purchased as the second owner in 2020 with ~126K miles.
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I would lightly file or sand down the mangled corners of that shaft so that the new parts slip by easily. You don't want to hammer the new parts into place getting past the damage.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
@bman400 and @donkpow, what do you guys think about spraying brake cleaner inside the spline shaft housing to get all that greenish (is it mold/mildew?) out of there? Would it hurt anything on the inside?
 

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2010 X Limited, 2.5L NA, 4AT. Purchased as the second owner in 2020 with ~126K miles.
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Brake cleaner is kind of harsh. They sell solvent in a spray can on the same shelf in the store. Is the green stuff oily? If you have an air compressor, I'd try that first. There's a seal in there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Sorry guys, I forgot to update last week. Well, it works great now.

Mounting the electromagnet is nothing. The three screws and then just clip the +12V lead.

Installing the pulley will involve tapping it sideways with a rubber mallet to avoid damaging the magnetized surface. very tight space, so invariably, I bent some upper radiator fins during the process. It's a very small area so I'm not worried.

The orientation of the Snap Ring does not really matter.... as long as it is even with the bearing. I found that the 45 degree interchangeable head works best for this. Harbor Freight carries the same set of pliers that is less than half the price of the parts stores, so no brainer there.

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I actually had to Dremmel the inner shank of the pliers to allow it to expand far enough for mounting on the ring :oops:.

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If you buy an aftermarket kit like I did, then you might have to play around with the gap a few times to make sure it cycles on and off properly. In any case, in the distant future, if I have to remove a shim, I decided to coat the splines on the plate with anti-seize.

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When I used different combinations of the old and new shims, the optimal gap wasn't achieved. By sheer luck, I found out that 1mm #6 generic washers from a Wal-Mart washer kit worked just fine for this purpose. The correct combination (after 2 hours of trial and error) for me was two of those store washers with one of the kit supplied (0.3mm thick?) shims.



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*Something weird I noticed is that after driving it around and then parking it with engine and A/C running, is that it doesn't cycle on and off when the hood is propped open. When I close the hood, I can hear and feel it operating normally. Does it have something to do with the radiant engine bay temperature when hood closed versus open??? *

The electromagnet wire lead was a little too long for a first gen Forester, (probably different lengths needed on a Legacy/Outback or Impreza) so I put a loose zip tie and some wiring loom to protect it from burn contact. Also the little plastic grey grommet is not used in a 2001 Forester either according to the seller.

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All in all, a lot of grunt work but worth it for only $60 spent. Mechanic wanted 5+ days and $1000+ to replace the compressor and refill with new refrigerant. I'm glad I thought about it first.

I feel sorry for all the poor souls that I've seen driving around on the highway with their windows open in this unbearable south Texas heat, because they can't afford an A/C repair on their older cars.
 

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A little trick I use when I need to work near the radiator fins is to cover them with a big piece of cardboard. You can double it over to make more cushion or just put in a piece of 1/4" plywood to protect the fins.
 
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