Question about 2000 Subaru Forester
On full lock at low speeds, there is a pronounced shudder that can be felt and heard. I hear that this is a problem with the differential and that it would need to be replaced. I changed the differential fluid, and it seemed to help, but did not fix the problem. The issue is not present after short drives, but is very apparent after driving for 20 or 30 minutes. Any ideas
Just because you changed the fluid doesn't mean if this is automatic transmission clutch plate chatter that will cure it. I have fixed this issue by using synthetic transmission fluid from REDLINE OIL. You can also try adding 3 ounces of STALUBE limited slip differential anti friction additive, it will not affect the transmission in any way but it does cure clutch plate chatter..
Posted on Oct 30, 2012
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Posted on Jan 02, 2017
I have a solution for you that I know will work, because it has on both of my 1992 Legacy wagons, but first I should explain why your question proceeds from a false assumption. The fuse you mention only exists on vehicles with the 4 speed ecectronically controlled automatic transmission (4EAT)and it asserts "forced front wheel drive mode" by signaling the TCU (transmission contol unit). When the fuse is not inserted the TCU regulates a slip clutch using duty cycle solenoid "C" to optimally adjust the degree of AWD (the front/rear power split) for the present vehicle speed, engine RPM, throttle setting, front and rear driveshaft speeds, and ATF temperature. When the fuse is inserted the TCU allows the clutch to slip freely. The TCU is self diagnosing, and has failure mode fallback strategies. if there duty solenoid C fails, the TCU will always assert AWD withj a 50/50 power split (the clutch is locked when solenoid C fails). The TCU signals failures using the POWER light, much as the CHECK ENGINE light signals errors from the ECU. However, one critical difference is that when a failure is detected, the TCU goes into limp-home mode but illuminate the POWER lamp until the next power-off power-on cycle. (see http://www.surrealmirage.com/subaru/trans.html for details on how to get detailed self-dignostic codes from the TCU without any special tools.)
Subaru service information says that the vehicle should not be driven in forced FWD mode, it is to be used for diagnostic purposes only. (It was provided to allow the vehicle to allow the vehicle be emission tested using a FWD dynamometer. In the USA the dynamometer test requirement was waived for AWD drive before it went into effect.) I don't have a detailed explanation of why, but since duty solenoid C is ON to allow the front/rear clutch to slip, it may fail prematurely if always-on.
Let me begin with the solution and then explain it.- you need to change the transmission filter and fluid, and drain and refill the fron and rear differential fluids. The AT uses simple Dextron II or III (get 2 gallons) and the diffferential both use 80W-90W old fashioned non-synthetic gear oil. You will need roughly 5 quarts for both,
Now for the explanation. When you inserted the fuse and disabled all wheel drive, you eliminated the the center differential action in the AT and the rear differential. When any car turns there is a left-right speed difference,and in an AWD car, there is also a front-rear speed difference. The noise you heard is a symptom of the drivetrain binding up during a turn. There will also usually be noticable lumpy turning moments when the tires jump-slip accomplishing the differential travel, but only on dry pavement. There may also be unpleasant symptoms when accelerating on moderately slick pavement.
You most pressing symptom is caused by the rear differential locking up because of either insuffiicient gear oil, aging gear oil suffering viscosity breakdown, or the wrong gear oil (either synthetic or higher viscosity conventional). The front and rear differentials in the car are limited slip differentials. They rely on the properties of 80-90W gear oil properly filled and in good condition.
Because its connected to the engine heat, the front differential oil will be in worse condition than the rear, and you would probably find that only draining and refilling the rear makes a big difference, but not enough or the problem comes back in a few weeks. When you put it in FWD only mode putting all the power is in the front, it has more incentive to slip, masks the problem temporarily.
You also need to change the ATF filter and drain and fill the AT because the center (front-rear) differential action is accomplished in the AT, and the problem will only resurface for that reason as well. The conventional ATF in these transmissions begins to suffer viscosity breakdown in as little as 10,000 miles and since no one changes the ATF and filter in an aging car afer you drain it you should drop and clean the AT pan and change the filter and gasket. It would be all but impossible not to strip the threads in the aluminum housing putting the rusted screws back in. (they pass through the flange and the tips corrode). Buy new screws at the hardware store and put then in with blue threadlocker. Be careful not to overtighten, but if one strips use heli-coil inserts to make thread repairs.
Posted on Apr 06, 2009
SOURCE: center differential
What you are discribing sure sounds like CV (constant volocity) joint noise from the axle(s), diff's don't make crunching noises, they whine and howl when they go bad, I will say this about your problem, you did not have it before the work was done, so it's a fair guess it has something to do with the work done, make them fix it, do you agree?
Posted on Oct 21, 2008
when it starts to shutter get the car up on a lift and spin the wheels and look and see if there is a wheel bubble.
if the brakes were done recently a binding brake pad can cause some of that.
hope this helps
Posted on Jul 03, 2009
I have this same problem with my 1996 Subaru Legacy 2.2 Wagon. There is a Subaru Service Bulletin #16-62-97 dated 5/16/97 with a Subject entitled "Transfer Clutch Binding And/Or Bucking On Turns". There is also an important follow-up to it numbered 16-64-99 dated 09/15/99 entitled "Revised Transfer Clutch Assembly Replacement Procedures" that should also be used should you decide to go ahead with the transfer clutch replacement.
I just got these Service Bulletins from my mechanic who got them from a Subaru dealer.
The estimate was about $700-$1000 to fix. This is more than likely the cause of the binding problem on slow, sharp turns.
Posted on Aug 04, 2009
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