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2010 Forester
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Discussion Starter #1
I am looking to buy a new forester and am struggling with one question. How will I pull it out of a ditch from the the front? The tie downs underneath are not designed for forward pulling and you would definitely have to crawl under and attach to both. A situation where recovery is necessary may be slim but I don't want the same deal as with my Jetta...no where to hook. Can I permanently attach a tow hook or two somehow? I am thinking a hook.
 

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2009 Forester X Premium
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On the new Foresters MY 09-10 there is a small panel on the front and rear bumpers that pops off and a recovery eye bolt screws into the frame. The rear pop panel is located on the driver's side of the rear bumper, while the front pop panel is located on the passenger side front bumper. The recovery eye bolt and a screw driver are located in the spare tire wheel well.

I have personally used the eye bolt and the rear recovery point to tow a Chevy Blazer and Silverado out of the snow. (I would have to say I did this about 5 times this winter) I am very impressed with my Subie's abilities. Really, I towed them out of the woods, unplowed roads...my poor FOZ was plowing snow!!!! Other times out of the ditch, when I got them out, they hit the brakes and I was still pulling them. Yes, these are "recovery" hooks not intended for towing others, but it works.
 

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2010 Forester
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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the reply. Since it is my wifes vehicle and I might not be around when she needs a pull (or to pull someone else) I think I might store the plastic cap you are mentioning and leave the eyelet in permanently. I do not want someone to hook to the wrong thing. See anything wrong with that? How about welding a hook to a bolt and screwing that in there - anyone done that?
 

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2009 Forester X Premium
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Well, I suppose you could do that, but it may get rusty and it might be a shin/knee knocker. Plus it will look tacky IMHO. Just store the recovery eyebolt and screw driver in the glove compartment for her. Show her where the attachment points are located and let her install it. Believe me, she will be happier knowing how to do it rather than having it done for her and constantly whacking her knees on the thing. I really recommend another set of wheels and tires for winter. I absolutely love my Blizzak WS60's, I have not got stuck and really don't worry about needing the recovery hook. Unless I need to tow somebody.
 

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2010 Forester
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Discussion Starter #5
I think you are right. Thanks for the tips. Also, what about the snow tires? Really need them? Describe the performance improvement if you can. Is it major?
 

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2009 Forester X Premium
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Ok, so I put the snow tires on the day before we got our major snow...back in November. I have not tried the OEM Yoko's in the snow. I would imagine that they perform as well as expected for all-weather tires. Nevertheless, I probably would have had some trouble in the deep/loose snow without said snow tires. They are amazing in the deep/loose stuff. Nevertheless, I am sure that the Subie awd system is the major factor here. The tires just give it extra help. If you go in the deep stuff, turn off the traction control.

The bonus with dedicated seasonal tires it that they are not too expensive and they are an investment in safety. Also, they will make your all-weather's last that much longer. I got mine from TireRack.com, steel wheels, tires, hubcaps, etc. all mounted and ready to go. I am sure that you can find some used wheels on craigslist for cheap and then find a bargain on some snow tires. Of note, my '09 has 17" wheels, the steelies are 16". Tirerack recommends taller sidewall tires with more narrow widths for best snow traction. I bet you could find somebody looking to sell some 16" oem Subaru wheels, just search the forum to see which oem wheels will work as they have different offsets. Good luck....

Also, a major improvement in the slushy and sloppy stuff with the snow tires. They do give you an extra bit of confidence, so don't push it too hard as the laws of physics still prevail.
 

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2010 Forester
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Discussion Starter #7
The deeper tread snow tire will go through the snow better. I am told that for snow the skinny tire is better but personal experience has shown me on trucks that the taller and skinnier tire is better. But with the Forester - we won't be putting on taller tires.

I will get some spare wheels - steel ones of the right size and put the tires on that have worked for you.
 

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2019 Crosstrek 2018 XT
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Since it is my wifes vehicle and I might not be around when she needs a pull (or to pull someone else)
I would think the chances of your wife having to pull out another vehicle would be zero. I wouldn't dream of my wife to get involved in a fiasco like that. Also Its hard for me to imagine my wife getting stuck and allowing a passerby pull her out. Will your wife be driving in conditions that make this a possibility?

On the subject of tires..don't forget that unless you go with wheels having the pressure sensor you won't get the benefit of the system. Also will your wife need to drive in areas where snow tire is required. And in light of this.. bear in mind that driving safety (stopping power and handling) are not as good with dedicated snows. So its not just a matter of "My wife will be safer on snows in the winter)...there are always compromises.

Please be very careful during the "recovery". Too many bad things happen.
My point precisely.
 

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2010 Forester
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Discussion Starter #10
Good points. The pull out would be on my own property most likey when she comes home before the drive is cleared. 800 foot driveway that drifts unbelievably.

You are so right - I would never want her to be pulled out by a passerby nor want her in conditions that would put her in the ditch. That is dangerous and in most cases asking for a disaster. I am just saying that if she did go in and even a professional service were to pull her out - would he know where and how to connect the winch. They did not know what to do with my Jetta so they pulled it backwards and we were lucky we could do so (there is a hook in back probably used on the ship during transit). Also, I do realize that all seasons will outperform snow tires in most conditions.

It will be easy to connect my truck or tractor to pull her as long as I have a front connection point. For the back I will add a hitch. The OEM one has a smaller sleeve meaning the stuff I have will not work so I might go for a 2" aftermarket unit. Any brands best for the Forester? Reese, other?
 

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2009 Forester X Premium
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The Curt hitch seems to be good. As with the OEM hitch, like you stated the receiver is small. You can get a 2" with the Curt. Also, the OEM hitch mounts in the bumper, so the factory recovery hook mounting location will be lost, as well as the bumper beam...Nevertheless, if you have a hitch this won't matter in the back. Try etrailer.com...?

Great points, you wouldn't want your wife to have to deal with such situations as pulling others out. But, teach her how to use the recovery points as you may not always be in the vicinity to help her out. I would surmise that a reputable towing company would have experience with proper recovery as the Subaru is not the only vehicle having the removable recovery hooks (i.e. BMW and others).
 

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2004 Forester XT
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178 Posts
I would think the chances of your wife having to pull out another vehicle would be zero. I wouldn't dream of my wife to get involved in a fiasco like that. Also Its hard for me to imagine my wife getting stuck and allowing a passerby pull her out. Will your wife be driving in conditions that make this a possibility?

On the subject of tires..don't forget that unless you go with wheels having the pressure sensor you won't get the benefit of the system. Also will your wife need to drive in areas where snow tire is required. And in light of this.. bear in mind that driving safety (stopping power and handling) are not as good with dedicated snows. So its not just a matter of "My wife will be safer on snows in the winter)...there are always compromises.


My point precisely.
Typo I hope? Or are you referring to dry road performance? Winter time in a location that typically see's winter conditions is exactly when someone should be running a winter/snow tire.
 

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There are recovery points to screw the eyelet into on the front and rear of the forester. Theres no need to install a receiver unless you plan to tow something. But if you do the curt hitch is really nice and simple to install.
 

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98 Forester...what else
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I wouldn't dream of my wife to get involved in a fiasco like that. Also Its hard for me to imagine my wife getting stuck and allowing a passerby pull her out.
Why wouldn't you want your wife to help out a friend? If Silke were called by a friend asking for some help getting towed out, I'd expect her to go help her friend.

As far as allowing a passer-by to help her out - I quit counting how many times we've helped perfect strangers on the side of the road. I used to do that for the sheer enjoyment of helping others. I've changed flat tires on the side of the road out in the middle of the desert, changed alternators for people traveling along the desolate stretches of I-15 between Barstow and Vegas, and helped more than a few people out of a ditch.

Sometimes regardless of how much control you might want to have, life intervenes...
 

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This is what the rear recovery loop looks like installed. I would not want that in place all the time.



As for having a woman help/do a recovery, there is no issue as long as she knows what to do. Where I live a lot of the women can drive off road better than a lot of men I know. Its all about getting the experience with someone who does know.
 

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2019 Crosstrek 2018 XT
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Why wouldn't you want your wife to help out a friend? If Silke were called by a friend asking for some help getting towed out, I'd expect her to go help her friend.
My 64 y.o.wife will do anything for anyone But trying to pull someone out of the snow isn't one of those things. :). She would pick up that person or call someone to get her out if necessary. But in our case it will never be an issue. We are retired and she would simply call me.
[/hyjack thread]
 

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2010 Forester
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Discussion Starter #17
I help people all the time too...the same stuff you describe... but this is the type of concerns I have seen with amatuer recoveries.

1) people using a conventional rope - very dangerous - and I have seen them break and take out small trees from the whipping effect
2) people having chains cross the road ...worse yet on a blind curve
3) people thinking they have the slack out then jerking the vehicle
4) hooking to the wrong spot
5) jerking on purpose
6) no warning beacons or flares

etc.

So...I agree that my wife should not be pulling people out and with a new $30K car - I will pay the $150 for the pro to tow her out with a winch. However, I will always stop to help out - it feels good.
 

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2012 Forester 2.5x Manual
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is the recovery loop(like the one the SH subie had) suitable for helping people out of ditches or stuck in the snow? or will it rip off/break something on my forester? if so is it better using the recovery loop or should I use the OEM hitch?
 

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This is what the rear recovery loop looks like installed. I would not want that in place all the time.



As for having a woman help/do a recovery, there is no issue as long as she knows what to do. Where I live a lot of the women can drive off road better than a lot of men I know. Its all about getting the experience with someone who does know.
Is there the same thing in the front of the 2015?
 
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