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15 Forester XT
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3 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Bought my '15 Forester on 10/1 and already it's in the shop. :( From day 1, it's had what I considered a rough idle when cold but didn't really think much of it. Figured the car needed a tune-up and was budgeting it for next month. Last Saturday, as I'm pulling out of the driveway, car throws a CEL, flashing cruise control light, flashing SI-Drive light, and solid Hill Ascent light. Doing a little research here on the forums said this was typical of a loose gas cap. Removed cap and reinstalled making sure it clicked tight. CEL didn't go away. On Sunday, as I'm pulling into a parking spot, the ABS, traction control, and hill ascent light goes solid. Upon restart of the car, the braking lights disappear. This morning, I take the car to our local Subaru dealer and give them all this information. BTW, we bought a bare bones extended warranty with the car. The kind that covers side-of-the-road-piston-hanging-out-the-block but not much else.

Advisor starts to mansplain how the cars idle higher when cold and that it's "normal" and a Subaru "quirk". Oh boy, here we go....

They come back with replace alternator due to a TSB related to CEL DTC P0300-Random misfire coupled with rough idle, but say that new serpentine belt and tensioner would be on me. Also recommended top end clean because of carbon buildup (75k miles on car), on me, and replacing brake switch at pedal, on them, because they say they've seen this part fail prematurely and it will cause the braking lights I saw on Sunday.

This is my first Subaru. We've considered one previously but decided on another brand. Good reputation for safety and reliability but I got to say I'm a bit pissed having to spend money on repairs right out of the gate. I know, it is a used car and you roll the dice. Just hoping this was a fluke and not a sign of things to come.

Incidently, before this weekend, we really love the car and not just because it's the shiny, new toy. It truly is a very nice car and fits our needs quite well. Really hoping we didn't make a mistake here.
 

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Premium Member
2006 FXT Lux
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385 Posts
That's unlucky, but 1) yes it's a used car and even though it sounds like you bought it from Subaru, when it comes to used cars most places treat them all the same. Get them in, shine them up and get them out the door again.

Moral of the story is that at the end of the day they're all human - they may genuinely not know the internals of your engine any better than you or the previous owner.

and 2) hopefully that's the last of the issues...

But I would agree the top end cleaner is necessary, as well as a full service as should be done with any new-to-you second hand car. A full replace of all fluids and filters, even the hard-to-reach ones or annoying ones like transmission fluid etc. At least that way you know 100% what is in it and that it has the right levels.

Side note - I also bought my XT used from a Subaru dealership. The salesman made me cringe, the lady he shipped me over to after I signed the papers for all the warranty and 'added extras' made me cringe as well, though I think I got the best of her instead when I said "look, if I modify this car in any way, all these warranties and protections are basically pointless, right?". She just looked at me blankly and after a second of shock went "...well, yes..." and I got up and walked out with my XT :)
 

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Premium Member
2019 Crosstrek 2018 Forester XT
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14,791 Posts
Its a used car. End of story. As you mentioned..you roll jthe dice. This thing likely had issues and that's why it was traded.

Buy a half dozen cans of seafoam. Add one per tank for the next 1000 miles. Best price agt walmart. Its a good product.
 

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2014 Forester XT
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109 Posts
Similar situation as you. Bought a used 14XT, and within a few days I had to bring it in for an AC compressor. A month after that, I had a leak from the CVT area. A month after that, I'm about to bring it in to replace the control arm bushings and ball joints. Disappointing of course, but it's a used car with nearly 80,000 miles. That's how it goes.
 

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2017 Forester XT Premium
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492 Posts
The belt and pully is part of the TSB and should be covered by the dealer that is BS. If you have a top end clean done be sure to ask if it is O2 sensor safe. There is a post about the cleaning and fouled O2 sensor.
 

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Premium Member
‘14 FXTT; '15 Legacy FB25
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1,097 Posts
I would skip the top-end cleaning. The chances of you needing it are slim to none.

Let them do all of the free TSB work and then decide from there if anything else needs to be done. I.e., focus on the problem at hand, then move on from there. You don't want to throw in work (e.g., top-end cleaning) that could cause other problems, resulting in you (and the dealer) chasing a separate problem that you're assuming is the original problem.

@KLEMMER: +1

OP should read and understand the TSB. If it states that the belt and pulley are to be replaced, too, then it shouldn't be hard to argue.

//

Now, if you have the ability to (or the money to pay someone else), you can easily DIY fluids like the brake fluid yourself. Leave the coolant be, for now, unless it's a color other than blue.
 
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