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2009 Forrester XT
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Wife is driving a 2009 XT Turbo limited which she loves. 28k miles, serviced every 3700 miles, only uses 93 octane Shell gas.

This past week while driving on 95 in Stamford CT, the car started making strange noises. No warning lights came on. She called our local dealer in Danbury, CT to make an appointment for the next day.

Within a few minutes, the noise intensified, started bucking, and died in the left hand lane of busy route 95 with cars speeding by.

Thankfully, she coasted off to the side, got the car restarted to get off the highway, and the car again died a few blocks away.

Towed on a flat bed to Danbury. Lucky she brought her coat, mittens, and cell phone or she would have been in tough shape. She is lucky she was not rear ended and killed.

Tow truck driver says "We do not usually have new Subaru Foresters totally break down and need towing"

Diagnosis: Connecting Rod Failure!!

Failure of a connecting rod, usually called "throwing a rod" is one of the most common causes of catastrophic engine failure in cars, frequently putting the broken rod through the side of the crankcase and thereby rendering the engine irreparable.

Such failures are quite rare on production cars used for normal daily driving.

Subaru is replacing the entire engine block as we speak.

Word to the wise: Always carry your cell phone for emergencies, take your winter coat and gloves, strongly consider extended warranty especially for cars with turbos.

Interesting: I have a 2009 turbo Forester, and a new 2010 legacy 6 cylinder. I decided to get the extended warranty not knowing about quality control on the new model year.

I do not intend to keep either car past the 100k warranty I purchased.
 

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2015 Forester X 6MT 6-Gear Manual
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My NA is knocking and they wont concur there exist a problem. They just say, " the base models dont have a lot of sound deadening, so you hear the motor noise " and, "If the rod bearings are bad, you'll know it - they'll knock you ears off". Car has Significant rapping sound at the overrun of each shift. Everytime i ride in the car I cringe. Noise get worse as engine gets warm to hot. The worse issue is, where my wife commutes to work the state allows use of the breakdown lane in the morning for Interstate Highway commuter travel, so, if she loses the motor she will have NO place to pull over and be safe. If she gets hurt or killed due to Fuji's failure to honor the maintenance contract - I'm going to OWN the subaru dealer. THIS WILL BE MY LAST SUBARU.
 

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2008 2008 2.5i-2018 XT
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The worse issue is, where my wife commutes to work the state allows use of the breakdown lane in the morning for Interstate Highway commuter travel, so, if she loses the motor she will have NO place to pull over and be safe. If she gets hurt or killed due to Fuji's failure to honor the maintenance contract - I'm going to OWN the subaru dealer. THIS WILL BE MY LAST SUBARU.
If you are that concerned for your wife's safety, you need to get rid of the car immediately...why chance it??
 

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2007 FSTI and X 6 MT
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22,330 Posts
I'm sorry to hear that you were bitten by the blown engine bug.

I would like to welcome you to the forum and hope you enjoy the forum.
I agree.

Good luck with it and let us know how it is after the new motor.
 

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2010 Forester X Premium
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942 Posts
I am in stamford as well feel sorry for your problem man. Good luck and let us know if the resolved the issue. I have na and to be hoenst I am happy with the car and had no issues. Actually after 7k I am pretty surre this will not be my last Subaru. Once again good luck with your car. This is why I stay away from Turbo charged cars ;) I like NA hope they will put the H6 into forester one day.
 

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I was talking to a local guy who has 4 Foresters in the family, two 2.0 N/As, one 2.0 XT and one 2.5XT, all heavily used with plenty - plenty of miles and absolutely no problems. He insists all such failure "rumors" are horse****.

On the other hand, I know of various failures with rods going astray, pistons throwing rings or crank bearing failures on absolutely stock cars that are supposed to have had no problems at all in their production series.

I am still scratching my head :confused: why some cars self-destroy under mild conditions and others go past the 150K miles with no issues at all and they're turbocharged ones!

The guy insisted that flat engines are sensitive to oil levels but if you had yours services every 3500 miles than this is no issue at all, you are just always on new just-touched oil.

Me :shrug:
 

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2007 Forester XT manual
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1,503 Posts
I have a number of friends with various models of Subarus and none of them have ever had to add oil between services - and here in Oz that is 12,500km - and most simply never bother to even lift the hood and check between services now because they're so confident that they don't need to. One friend has 300,000km on her '03 Liberty (Legacy) and did 546,000km in her '92 Liberty and it never used any oil right to the end. I hope my '07XT continues to behave the same way. Here they are considered the most reliable, trouble free make of car you can buy.
 

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none none
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I was talking to a local guy who has 4 Foresters in the family, two 2.0 N/As, one 2.0 XT and one 2.5XT, all heavily used with plenty - plenty of miles and absolutely no problems. He insists all such failure "rumors" are horse****.

On the other hand, I know of various failures with rods going astray, pistons throwing rings or crank bearing failures on absolutely stock cars that are supposed to have had no problems at all in their production series.

I am still scratching my head :confused: why some cars self-destroy under mild conditions and others go past the 150K miles with no issues at all and they're turbocharged ones!

The guy insisted that flat engines are sensitive to oil levels but if you had yours services every 3500 miles than this is no issue at all, you are just always on new just-touched oil.

Me :shrug:
The 09's had a known problem with quality of the engine internals, hence the stop sale. Other than a few 09 models that slipped through or weren't included, the 2.5L turbo engine is one of the most reliable engines subaru has made.
 

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2015 Forester X 6MT 6-Gear Manual
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If you are that concerned for your wife's safety, you need to get rid of the car immediately...why chance it??
How do you sell/trade a car with a loud rod knock? Plus it's only a bit over a year old and at a bad part of the depreciation. I will call the dealer and demand to meet with a zone rep.
 

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2016 Outback and WRX CVT
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2,589 Posts
My NA is knocking and they wont concur there exist a problem. They just say, " the base models dont have a lot of sound deadening, so you hear the motor noise " and, "If the rod bearings are bad, you'll know it - they'll knock you ears off". Car has Significant rapping sound at the overrun of each shift. Everytime i ride in the car I cringe. Noise get worse as engine gets warm to hot. The worse issue is, where my wife commutes to work the state allows use of the breakdown lane in the morning for Interstate Highway commuter travel, so, if she loses the motor she will have NO place to pull over and be safe. If she gets hurt or killed due to Fuji's failure to honor the maintenance contract - I'm going to OWN the subaru dealer. THIS WILL BE MY LAST SUBARU.
^ That is certainly frustrating and concerning - with your level of experience, I'd well imagine that your diagnosis/troubleshooting would be correct. Are there any local/area independent shops who would be able to help you document the issue? Can you make a video of the problem, and either send it to Subaru and/or post it publicly? I wonder what/how we can help you push through some kind of action.

Unfortunately, at this point, at least, I don't think that it is viable for you to pursue the "look at the turbo-engines' troubles" route, when trying to convince the dealers that something is awry. The cross-comparison is untenable simply because Subaru never issued the same "Stop Sale" statements with the N/A variants. Logically, therefore, to use this route as a basis for your argument would not hold - but certainly, as a unique-to-vehicle mechanical problem, the diagnosis can well be valid.

Please let us know how your meeting with the zone/area rep. goes.

In the meanwhile, I'll keep my fingers crossed for you and your wife! We were on a road-trip, with my then 3-year-old daughter, when our FXT started exhibiting *very* early signs of this problem (a vibration-like noise which I could hear). I would have been furious had it left us stranded.


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I was talking to a local guy who has 4 Foresters in the family, two 2.0 N/As, one 2.0 XT and one 2.5XT, all heavily used with plenty - plenty of miles and absolutely no problems. He insists all such failure "rumors" are horse****.

On the other hand, I know of various failures with rods going astray, pistons throwing rings or crank bearing failures on absolutely stock cars that are supposed to have had no problems at all in their production series.

I am still scratching my head :confused: why some cars self-destroy under mild conditions and others go past the 150K miles with no issues at all and they're turbocharged ones!

The guy insisted that flat engines are sensitive to oil levels but if you had yours services every 3500 miles than this is no issue at all, you are just always on new just-touched oil.

Me :shrug:
That local guy of yours, Mi_ka, simply doesn't know what's going on.

Like funkeymonkey and others in this thread have cited, this is a known problem with the '08/'09s of certain VIN-range and manufacture dates. Not only has Subaru itself been quoted with the "Stop Sale" document (http://www.subaruforester.org/vbulletin/f88/subaru-issues-turbo-stop-sale-certain-08-09-models-31757/), but the fallout is also widely publicized and well-documented/supported from within the community.

The next time you see him, just refer him to this single thread:

http://www.subaruforester.org/vbulletin/f88/09-turbo-engine-failure-62103/

That's my failure thread, and on page 2, that's my Service Invoice.

Those who've known me here for a while or from other communities (I'm relatively new here, with a low post-count, but I've been in the Subaru community since April of 2005, with nearly 9000 posts on LegacyGT.com, as well as many posts on LegacyGT.org and NASIOC [as "LGT+WRX"]) - or in real-life - can confirm that's my wife's real name: Sara Lee.

Local LERSOC (Lake Erie Regional Subaru Owners Club) and/or Forced4s members - communities in which I've been active (since 2005 and since-inception, respectively) can not only serve as references as to my real-life existence, but can also see this document, first-hand, if they wish.

This is all too real.

Don't get me wrong. I love my Subarus.

My '05 Legacy was a dealer-demo which came to me with 6K miles - a car I took simply because I fell in love with it at first drive - and she's been "Stage II" since 10K miles. Aside from needing a new clutch at 36K miles (I used to slip-launch her from about 4/4.5K about twice a week, and she'd endured not only her dealer-demo days, but also my wife's uncle "re-learning" how to drive stick on her), she'd never spent even an hour in a shop (the clutch I needed to have done, as I simply didn't have the time to do it myself) - I've wrenched on her, myself, for everything from maintenance to upgrades.

My wife's '05 WRX, a 4EAT sedan, I also maintained myself, and also never spent a single hour in the shop.

Both were/are faithful daily-drivers which never had any problems. Certainly, I don't pretend to not ask a lot of my LGT - but I do baby her with good care when I'm not thrashing her around. My wife's WRX saw the same maintenance as my own LGT, and also came through the four years of its term lease without any problems, despite my wife's lack of "mechanical empathy" (which is why we lease her cars).

Until Subaru no longer makes a car that suits our needs, we'll continue to be a Subaru family.

That's how much I love my Subarus. :smile:

But as with many others, I'm disappointed - and a bit enraged - that failures of this type keep happening, to vehicles supposedly "tested and passed" and then went on to rack up, with many cases now, tens of thousands of miles, over the course of years of ownership, to then go kablooey. :frown: :icon_mad:

MBA, while I know exactly how you feel, I would urge you to not judge Subaru based solely on this one fault. This marque is known - and almost legendary - for extremely durable and reliable vehicles - I can't tell you how happy it made me feel, when my Legacy was "new," when a random guy at a local gas station walked up to me and asked if "that's the new Subaru?" and then proceeded to list off all the Subarus his family has owned that topped the 250K-mile mark.

As a Subaru fan, I'm truly disappointed and saddened - and a little mad - at how this failure continues to manifest.

As a "car guy," I can well understand that any car can fail. It's a machine, after all.

But this is a known issue - and an issue which should have been addressed by the vehicle having passed the dealer-level testing.

Logically, then, this leads to only two possible conclusions:

That some dealers were either lazy and/or were less-than-morally-upstanding, and decided to give rubber-stamp "passes" to potentially affected vehicles, without actually having performed the testing.

Alternatively, the only other possible explanation is that the original concept as well as execution of the testing was perhaps only enough to elicit non-passing marks from vehicles which were more severely affected - but which still enabled "marginal" vehicles to have sneaked through, only to later fail in the same manner.

Either way, this is a debacle, and has hurt Subaru, tremendously.
 

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2009 forester xt
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faulty engine

Sounds all to familiar. Engine quit at less than 27,000 miles. Subaru waffling. Especially when told of the stop sale order and the fact that my vin # fits. So much for reliability.
 

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2015 Forester XT Touring CVT
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Yup, my brand "new" certifed used Subaru with jsut over 37900 miles on it Just died with this engine knock not but 30mins ago =(. Girl is only 1 week old and I asked our dealer three times to make sure all recall issues have been addressed. Now she is sitting on the side of the road cold and alone, leaving myself a bit.. irked to say the least. THe subbie dealer will be open tomorrow and and we did get the extended 100k warranty . 1.9k over factory warranty and total engine failure is not making me a happy camper ><:puke:
 

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2009 Forester XT 4EATs civics
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My 09 Xt 38000 km purchased used 3 weeks ago is at the dealer right now I think I have the same issue but it's not yet diagnosed. I was passing a Volvo and its started grinding. I coasted to a stoplight the noise intensified then it just stalled. It wont turnover when i tried to start it. Hope fully I don't need to drive a loner for to long. Fortunately I am really happy with my local dealer and am confident that they'll do a great job fixing it and getting are ducks in a row with it fixed and running fine in a week or two and and they're setting us up with a 2011 legacy cvt touring loner in the meantime
 

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2009 Forester XT 4EATs civics
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A couple of other questions,

how do you feel about the quality of the repair?

Any more issues afterwards?

New or used parts/engine?

Does the turbo need to be replaced? i think it does unless it's an independent oil feed because it will be filled with metal shards from the engine oil it will just blow them back through the engine and generate more problems

thanks in advance
 

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2009 subaru standard
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How do I know if my engine is in the vin range of 2009 failure?

Just put a new head, inlet, 2ndary air and more crap on xt 2009 I bought a week ago ouch!!
 

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2009 Forester Automatic
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Another '09 Forester Turbo engine blown.

My '09 Forester Turbo engine just blew a piston without any warning at all. We purchased it new and it just rolled over 80k miles. We just had the 75k mile inspection done Oct '13.
The oil light never came on. There are no oil leaks in the garage, nor at the spot my wife has parked at work everyday for the past 3.5 years.
Subaru is simply saying, "too bad, so sad". But, they will give me a good deal on a 2014.
Problem is, I just bought a 2014 Forester in August, so I cannot afford two new car payments.
I wish this problem with the '09 would have happened before I purchased the '14.
In fact, I purchased the '14 from a different dealership because I thought the problem was simply with the dealership, but I was sadly mistaken.
Not sure what I can do now. Will check with an attorney to find out my options.
Thanks for reading.
 

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2009 subaru forester xt auto
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Another 2009 Turbo Engine failure

On Tuesday April 4/22 i with my toddler were driving in our 2009 turbo Forrester with 45,000 miles when i heard a loud jackhammering like sound coming from the front of the car and underneath the car. I was in the highway and called my husband in a panic. My toddler hear the noise and was very scared. I decided to get off the highway not feeling comfortable with the noise and as i drove down the off ramp the noise got louder and more labored. I went to turn into the first parking lot i could see and the power steering was gone and i took a rough turn having lost total control off the car because the car was dying. The noises continued and i coasted into the middle of a four way stop in a parking center area. The car gave one last awful noise and boom the engine was dead. No power and all of the dash check engine lights etc. were on. My toddler was scared to death. I had it towed to my subaru dealer where we purchased the car just a year and a half ago. The service department reported it was a throw rod which damaged the engine beyond repair and the whole engine block and turbo need to be replaced which they said was anywhere from $6000-$9000 job. They gave us an estimate and we are pursuing it with the corporate office because this is a defect in the engine and no one should have to pay for this out of their own pocket. i have been in touch via email and telephone with costumer service and the claims department and have gotten prompt responses. i have done research and so many people with 2009 turbo foresters have had this problem. It needs a recall. I have been very nice each time i deal with the subaru office and so far have had a good experience. if my repairs are not paid in full i will be taking legal action to fight for pay. My suggestion is to not back down and constantly call and email subaru in a nice demeanor until you get the answers you want. They pride themselves on the longevity and quality of their vehicles and well as safety and do not like to hear from people who challenge that. Good luck and keep fighting.
 

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Sad news.
You have been very lucky to have evaded a major accident if conditions had been a little different in heavy fast traffic.
Subaru have been very lucky to have missed a major PR wreck with this lemon bunch of theirs running around the past few years.
Nowadays that they had made a truckload of profits in the in-between time they should at last address these vehicles running around waiting for a blown engine to occur.
How many can they be in total?
 
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