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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi Everyone,
Ive got a 2010 manual Diesel forester with the EE20 Diesel engine.
Ive been having some problems with the engine just randomly shutting off, especially when its cold (air temp makes no difference). Sometimes it has trouble sitting on idle and you need to get it up over 1000rpm to keep it running but then sometimes it will also shut down while driving at slower speeds.

It doesn't run rough or blow smoke and still feels like it has a normal amount of power. Ive had it at a subaru dealership and a mechanic that only works on subaru and they have all seen it stall but nobody can figure out why its doing it. Im not really mechanically minded but off the top of my head I can say that its had the following done in an attempt to find the fault.
All service items replaced e.g. fuel filter ect
injector/fuel pump relearn
all fuel lines and pressures checked
DPF/ash levels checked
injectors are all within specification
no fault codes are showing up at all
all sensors have checked out ok inc crank position sensor
EGR clean and check.

The independent subaru mechanic who has a very good reputation where I live has conceded defeat and has handed the car back to me after having it for over a week (he didn't charge me anything for labour which is good). So I don't know where else to turn. Im getting close to just trading it in on something else but if anyone had any ideas I would love to hear them.
 

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2011 Forester
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122 Posts
Check you battery/electrical system. Couldn’t tell from the write up if you had!


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk Pro
 

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2015 Forester 2.5i Premium 6-speed manual
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I am unfamiliar with this design, but I have owned 4 VW diesels, two of which where direct injection motors.

Where is your diesel located?

What brand of diesel are you using?

When you say cold, you mean the engine. Does this always happen when the engine is cold? Or warm too?

Has anybody checked the fuel shut off or the electrical side of the fuel system of the car? As in relays and solenoids.

Has anybody checked the fuel tank for contamination or water?

When the engine idles poorly or stalls what is the fuel level?

Have the fuel system pressures been checked under load or over an extended period of time?


Air introduced into the fuel lines will cause a stall as will poor fuel delivery. I believe you have a common rail system, so the injectors should see the same operating and static fuel pressure at same time.

How long does the fuel system hold system pressure after shutdown and is it within known specifications? When cold? When Warm? When Hot?

Are there any electrical or vacuum controlled components in the fuel delivery system, including the fuel return back to the tank? If so, do they control fuel return to the tank and fuel volume and pressure at the injectors?
 

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2012 Forester X 5 MT
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881 Posts
I remember from my Rabbit Diesel days that the injection pump had an electric solenoid fuel cutoff unit. Is the connection tight? Is the terminal on the lead-in wire connected properly (i.e. a good crimp connection)?

Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
@karlaudi Hi. The car is located in Brisbane, Australia. Im not sure of you have it where you are but 99% of the time the vehicle is run on bp ultimate diesel which I guess would be the diesel version of the 98 octane premium unleaded that bp sell in the sense that its meant to keep the fuel system clean and provide a little more power.

When i say cold I just mean the engine, not the weather. It can be a 35c day (95f) in summer and it will still do it for the 1st 10-15min of operation. Has done it once while warm but its very raree. I know all the electrics of the fuel system have been checked and the tank has indeed been checked for water. The problem occurs regardless of fuel tank level.

I am unsure about fuel line pressures and holding pressure after shutdown. That is something I will follow up with when I speak to the mechanic next.
 

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Would be interesting to see engine control unit data. Mechanics should have created some log files.
Sensor values, selected injection mode, which multi-injections (these depend on coolant temperature), whether ECU tries to increase injection quantities during stall and so on.
Feel free to send me all you can get - files (text or binary), scanned printouts etc.
 

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imo, this is temp of coolant related, the ecu adjusts fuel pump to send more fuel when cold, til the temp is at operating normal , replace whatever temp sending sensor is used here , because , unless you have a head gasket failure, it is not getting enough fuel to run when cold, either that or the ecu itself is bad, and that does happen too ,................. my opinon sight unseen as long as dpf system is good and air flow thru the system intake and exhaust is good as you say
 

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2015 Forester 2.5i Premium 6-speed manual
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@karlaudi Hi. The car is located in Brisbane, Australia. Im not sure of you have it where you are but 99% of the time the vehicle is run on bp ultimate diesel which I guess would be the diesel version of the 98 octane premium unleaded that bp sell in the sense that its meant to keep the fuel system clean and provide a little more power.

When i say cold I just mean the engine, not the weather. It can be a 35c day (95f) in summer and it will still do it for the 1st 10-15min of operation. Has done it once while warm but its very raree. I know all the electrics of the fuel system have been checked and the tank has indeed been checked for water. The problem occurs regardless of fuel tank level.

I am unsure about fuel line pressures and holding pressure after shutdown. That is something I will follow up with when I speak to the mechanic next.

Then I think it is very safe to say that the quality of the fuel you are using is not the source of your problem. It is most likely a fuel volume / pressure control problem. But I keep an open mind here. subdiesel, I think, is on the right track here and the key will be finding the correct symptoms under the right conditions to find the component(s) that are causing the problem.

In the early 1980s when working my way through a College Automotive Service Technician program, the over mantra of my professors for successful repairs were three simple words; basics, basics, basics. Make sure everything is as it should be before assuming the problem comes from something complex or obscure.

Please keep us posted on your progress in resolving this problem.
 

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2010 Forester Diesel 6MT
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Hi subi1990,

interesting issue (for us) and no doubt frustrating issue for you!

We had our 2010 cut out once on a freeway on-ramp under full throttle. Luckily it was a downhill ramp and the engine cut back in by itself.

Only ever happened once, shortly after that we had a split turbo elbow/piece. I'd suggest you check all the intake hoses/pipes for splits, looseness or leaks. This may not be the issue but it's an easy one to do that hasn't been mentioned yet and is common on these vehicles, especially 2010 ones.

Apart from that it could be a multitude of things and I'd suggest a proper diagnosis from a proper readout, like subdiesel suggests (G'day subdiesel, good to see you're still watching :) ) may be instructive as it will show what is happening at the stall- what may be varying, out of spec, abnormal, etc. It could be anything yet from a valve timing issue through intake, fuel control, sensor, ECU failing, malfunctioning solenoid/valve, excessive carbon buildup or even just a loose ground connection.

As karlaudi says, it's unlikely it's the fuel itself now and it's good that the basics have been checked. A good professional scanner readout with real-time (Mode6?) data of multiple parameters is what you now need for further insight. If your mechanic hasn't done that, then they're perhaps not quite THAT good...unfortunately these are not 'old school' diesels and need more than a oil bath air filter and a bleed of the injectors every so often.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
imo, this is temp of coolant related, the ecu adjusts fuel pump to send more fuel when cold, til the temp is at operating normal , replace whatever temp sending sensor is used here , because , unless you have a head gasket failure, it is not getting enough fuel to run when cold, either that or the ecu itself is bad, and that does happen too ,................. my opinon sight unseen as long as dpf system is good and air flow thru the system intake and exhaust is good as you say
Thanks mate, I feel like you might be on to something here.
The last mechanic who looked at it told me that the problem stopped occurring as soon as the coolant temp reached 40 degrees C.
Upon the previous independent mechanics recommendation I've got it booked in at a bigger dealer about 2hrs drive from me. Apparently my local dealer is mainly made up "technicians" and only 1 mechanic in a large busy dealer workshop and this other place is meant to have a much better reputation in the industry. So we'll see how it goes.
 

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2015 Forester 2.5i Premium 6-speed manual
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The attached information on the EE20's DENSO Common Rail Fuel System may be posted somewhere here on the forum, but I found it searching the net.

I think it gives a nice over view, and may help in troubleshooting.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Hi everyone.
Just thought i would update.
Ive had the vehicle in at the biggest subaru dealer in my state (queensland) on the reccomendation of the 2 previous workshops.

They have said there is a problem with the timing chain and that it will be approx $2100 (aud) to fix.
Does this sound right? Its a lot of money.
 

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2010 Forester Diesel 6MT
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Hi everyone.
They have said there is a problem with the timing chain and that it will be approx $2100 (aud) to fix.
Does this sound right? Its a lot of money.
Hi subi1990,

let's be careful here. I'm making some assumptions here since I haven't actually heard/seen your communications with the workshop but the following is a bit of a bugbear of mine.

a) You brought your car the the dealer workshop with a stalling issue and presumably asked them to quote/fix the stalling issue.

b) From what you've reported the dealer workshop has said that there is a timing chain issue and quoted to fix it.

Note the difference between what you asked for and what was quoted. This is where you have to be careful. They may have found a legitimate timing chain issue and quoted to fix it, but will it fix your problem?

Because if you accept the quote and they fix the timing chain but the stalling/stopping issue is still there, you're $2100 worse off and still where you were with regards to the original issue. You may have no 'come-back' as you accepted their quote and they carried out the accepted quote.

Go back and make sure that their quote will actually fix the original stalling/stopping issue. If they are sure that the timing chain will fix the issue, then get them to say so on the quote- that it will fix the stalling/stopping issue. They won't like it, but it's what you're after. that way, if it doesn't fix the issue, you can go back and claim they didn't carry out the work you requested- and they quoted.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Hi everyone.
I just thought I would update incase anyone has the same problem.
I decided to get the timing chain replaced as per the dealer recommendation.
Ive had the car back for about 10 days and have been driving it to work everyday and it seems as though the car has been fixed. Its now running really nicely and seems smoother than before and the fuel economy has definitely improved as well.

So hopefully this is a case of problem solved.
 

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This is proof that making sure the basics are as they should be is the key to many performance issues. Proper timing is no less important, and maybe more important, for a diesel to run properly than it is for a gasoline or spark ignition engine.

The mileage improvement and improved smooth performance is the key that replacing the timing chain was the correct call on the part of your dealer.

Glad to hear it worked out.
 

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Hi everyone.
I just thought I would update incase anyone has the same problem.
I decided to get the timing chain replaced as per the dealer recommendation.
Ive had the car back for about 10 days and have been driving it to work everyday and it seems as though the car has been fixed. Its now running really nicely and seems smoother than before and the fuel economy has definitely improved as well.

So hopefully this is a case of problem solved.
Thanks very much for getting back to us- I really appreciate knowing the outcome. I'm glad it has worked out so well for you and wish you many years of trouble free, economical motoring! :thumbsup:
 

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Hi subi1990, I am having the same problem. Is your car still running right? Could you please share the details of the dealership that correctly diagnosed your issue as timing chain? I am in south-east Qld as well.

Mine is a 2015 diesel with CVT transmission. The daily pattern is, summer or winter, it stumbles badly when trying to proceed forward down the street after reversing out of the driveway. Then it stumbles again a few more times down the road before the engine is warm - usually when turning a corner at a T-junction, or taking off at the lights (ie when going from a standing start).

I had a blocked DPF misadventure a few weeks ago necessitating a DPF clean. All resolved now, but in amongst the fault codes was an incorrect cylinder timing code. This could have been a "sympathy" code as sometimes one error can set off others (the hill-start assist went down as well and the car went into limp-home mode).

The code was cleared but I am waiting to see if it returns. If it is the camchain, the vehicle is potentially covered under extended dealership warranty. I tried do have the car's 'home' dealership fix it but they failed to replicate the fault. Another dealer said it was a cracked inlet from turbo to intercooler - I replaced it, but the problem remains (and I couldn't find any cracks in the original anyway). If I can get your dealership to correctly diagnose timing chain or other problem, I could take it back to the seller and argue the case for warranty repair.




Hi everyone.
I just thought I would update incase anyone has the same problem.
I decided to get the timing chain replaced as per the dealer recommendation.
Ive had the car back for about 10 days and have been driving it to work everyday and it seems as though the car has been fixed. Its now running really nicely and seems smoother than before and the fuel economy has definitely improved as well.

So hopefully this is a case of problem solved.
 

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2012 Forester Premium 2.0D / 2016 Subaru XV
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Hi subi1990,

The problem you’ve described seems very similar to one I’m experiencing with my MY12 at the moment, and currently has our mechanic a bit stumped.

Car has 160K on the clock, recently serviced including upper manifold clean, yet car still persists with stalling problem on cold start. Environmental temp is not an issue, but engine temp does seem to be to main factor. For first 10min car will not hold idle and stalls or just cuts out. Once up to temp and has some warmth in engine, runs like a dream. Mechanic has reset ECU, done a forced DPF regen, changed temp sensor which was showing a litttle high on cold engine, and cleaned air flow sensor.

When you had your timing chain replaced, were there any other parts changed? Chain tensions etc? How long did the job take at the dealers?

Cheers

magilla.


Hi everyone.
I just thought I would update incase anyone has the same problem.
I decided to get the timing chain replaced as per the dealer recommendation.
Ive had the car back for about 10 days and have been driving it to work everyday and it seems as though the car has been fixed. Its now running really nicely and seems smoother than before and the fuel economy has definitely improved as well.

So hopefully this is a case of problem solved.
 

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Hi subi1990,

The problem you’ve described seems very similar to one I’m experiencing with my MY12 at the moment, and currently has our mechanic a bit stumped.

Car has 160K on the clock, recently serviced including upper manifold clean, yet car still persists with stalling problem on cold start. Environmental temp is not an issue, but engine temp does seem to be to main factor. For first 10min car will not hold idle and stalls or just cuts out. Once up to temp and has some warmth in engine, runs like a dream. Mechanic has reset ECU, done a forced DPF regen, changed temp sensor which was showing a litttle high on cold engine, and cleaned air flow sensor.

When you had your timing chain replaced, were there any other parts changed? Chain tensions etc? How long did the job take at the dealers?

Cheers

magilla.
Hi Magilla
I have similar issues to you aswell

2013 Diesel Outback Cvt premium 175,000ks.
Melbourne, Australia.

Noticed an issue 2 months back, it has always started great straight away within half a second hot or cold.
Then it started to occasionally misfire on startup and would have to start a second time and it starts and runs ok.
Gradually this became more frequent, but now when it starts, it runs for a short time then stalls. It can stall within 1 second or can idle normally for 5, 10 seconds or longer then stall. It dosen't run rough, it just cuts out. Sometimes it idles for 30 seconds then I put it into gear (reverse or Drive) starts moving then cuts out.
I can start it and keep the revs up around 1500 and no stalling until I let the revs back down to under 1000.
Once I've gone through this stalling and reving up process numerous times it seems to warm up and run fine, that's why I changed the coolant temp sensor but no fix.
Then once the car cools and sits overnight same stalling issues come back.

Checks I've done so far.
-Spare key, same problem
-Key batterys are good.
-Immobilizer seems to be working properly, light turns off when key inserted and started. Stays off when stalled.
-Battery tested and connections look fine
  • intank fuel pump checked and working ok.
  • coolant temp sensor replaced.
-No fault codes.
-Service done after this issue started, new oil air & fuel filter.
Hope this helps and any advice from you guys would be much appreciated.

Cheers Dale.
 
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