('06-'08) 4EAT confused or deeper issue? - Subaru Forester Owners Forum
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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 05-22-2019, 06:09 AM Thread Starter
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4EAT confused or deeper issue?

OK so I have a 2007 Forester X Auto, its my first subaru so bear with my model specific ignorance, and initially it had some torque bind which has largely been solved by changing the ATF and doing the 10 circles right and left thing.

My question is, every once in a while the transmission seems confused on which gear to go into. It seems to shift into 4th prematurely sometimes when driving in town near the top end of the 3rd to 4th shift point. When this happens there is a small shudder which can be relieved if the gas is applied and it then immediately shifts back to the appropriate gear. I have read a few people say that this can be a "normal" issue with the 4EAT Auto, but since I am a noob, not sure if this is actually normal or not. Thanks and any insight would be appreciated.

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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 05-22-2019, 06:36 AM
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Our 2011 does the same thing; hunting for the best gear to be in... you get used to it.


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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 05-22-2019, 06:45 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks, its actually my first auto trans, always driven manuals, did not know what to expect with this one. The lack of information regarding anyone else having this issue led me to believe this was not a real problem, but was still not convinced.

Last edited by Kevin; 05-23-2019 at 04:12 PM. Reason: Unnecessary use of Quote
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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 05-22-2019, 07:04 AM
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@Mooglover - Automatic gear "hunting" is pretty common.
The "shudder" you mention isn't.
The engine lugging is creating some additional strain which likely makes the shudder show up.
I'd look for a slightly loose mount on the engine or transmission...

For me, the gear hunt only happens on steep hills where my speed is just below 75 (the speed limit here).
Therefore the options are drive a bit slower, drive a bit faster, or use the sport mode on the shifter to manually select a gear.

In your case, I am guessing that you speed up and then have throttled back about the time the transmission is shifting.
If at about that same time, you start going up a hill, the transmission will be in too high of a gear for your speed, and it would (should) downshift on its own.
By hitting the throttle harder you are forcing that to happen.

Pretty normal except for the shudder, IMHO.
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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 05-22-2019, 07:43 AM Thread Starter
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Maybe "shudder" was the wrong descriptive word, it is more like a "lugging", like if I missed a shift in a Manual tranny and went from 2nd to 4th, or 3rd to 5th, almost like its too low rpm. Again, this is my first subaru, and in turn, first experience with the 4EAT Auto transmission. I am probably being a bit over reactive, mainly because I have no experience with a perfectly new driving experience.
Thanks for the reply
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 05-22-2019, 07:52 AM
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@Mooglover -
You're welcome.
That makes sense.
Here's a thought...
The prior driver may have had different driving habits, and the car's computer might benefit from a reset.
You might want to look at this thread:
https://www.subaruforester.org/vbull...ng-them-47402/
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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 05-22-2019, 08:05 AM
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Mine also does this occasionally. Usually when i am accelerating then when its just about to shift up i let go of throttle (e.g. because the car in front started braking) then there is a small shudder. Kind of like it shifted up then quickly shifted down. Been that way since I have owned the car (2 years). I have learnt to live with it since that scenario i explained happens occasionally and i believe its normal.
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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 05-22-2019, 08:19 AM
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@Mooglover take a look at this thread: Tell me about manually shifting a 4EAT!

Bobby...

['07 FSXT MODding Journal] ['03 X MODding Journal]

'07 FSXT - COBB Surgeline dyno stock Protune - Stage 1+
'03 X +AVO turbo kit = XT (son's)
'95 Neon Sport
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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 05-22-2019, 08:20 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DragonSubie7 View Post
@Mooglover -
You're welcome.
That makes sense.
Here's a thought...
The prior driver may have had different driving habits, and the car's computer might benefit from a reset.
You might want to look at this thread:
https://www.subaruforester.org/vbull...ng-them-47402/
Interesting, there seems to be conflicting info on the web about resetting the TCU, some say only by a dealership, some say pull the battery lead and hold the brake, some say pull the battery lead and wait, etc.

Would the TCU just reset itself over time too? If it is a true learning system, would it not keep learning over time?
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 05-22-2019, 09:02 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2.5x_sleeper View Post
Thanks, Not sure if that's what I am needing, just don't have a point of reference for the normal operations of the Auto 4EAT.

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post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old 05-22-2019, 09:37 AM
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@Mooglover [D]... [4] is pretty much an overdrive & the TCM is programed to shift into [D] as soon as possible. That can cause poor performance... sluggishness &/or constant shifting from [D] to [3].

We always keep our 4EAT in [3], until we're above 50 mph. We also downshift from [D] to [3] when we're below 50 mph.

Note that the maximum speed for [3] is 98 mph for nonturbo & 104 mph for the XT.

You'll notice better performance in [3] but could notice a reduction in gas mileage... if you track that.

Bobby...

['07 FSXT MODding Journal] ['03 X MODding Journal]

'07 FSXT - COBB Surgeline dyno stock Protune - Stage 1+
'03 X +AVO turbo kit = XT (son's)
'95 Neon Sport
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post #12 of 23 (permalink) Old 05-22-2019, 10:03 AM Thread Starter
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Gotcha. I will try this and see what it accomplishes in the way of reducing the lugging. I have only noticed it at around 40 mph with a light pressure to the gas pedal, I would think this would confirm or deny that the issue is normal if it does not happen.
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post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old 05-22-2019, 11:37 AM
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Yes, the "lugging" can be very noticeable & annoying if you're in D[4] & need to accelerate! It takes awhile for the TCM to decide to downshift... feels like "forever", then the power comes on in burst!

Overall, we're good with the 4EAT on our Foresters. We're running Red Line synthetic ATF & gear oil in both our Foresters, This was a service upgrade at our trusted local Subaru dealership shop.

Bobby...

['07 FSXT MODding Journal] ['03 X MODding Journal]
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'07 FSXT - COBB Surgeline dyno stock Protune - Stage 1+
'03 X +AVO turbo kit = XT (son's)
'95 Neon Sport
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post #14 of 23 (permalink) Old 05-23-2019, 02:14 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all the info @2.5x_sleeper I do appreciate it!
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post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old 06-13-2019, 04:01 AM Thread Starter
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@2.5x_sleeper So it seems to shift fine when in [3], but when in D[4] there is a noticeable shudder (I can definitely feel it in seat), when it shifts from [3] to [4]. It is not always present so I am not sure, but seems like its when shifting up into [4] and only under light acceleration. Heavy load does not seem to make it happen.
One other thing is the car had new, or newer looking ATF in it when I bought it, maybe someone put the wrong kind in there? I have read how sensitive the 4EAT is to different kinds of ATF, just a thought. Any ideas? Thanks
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