Question about 1997 Subaru Outback

1 Answer

'97 Subaru stuck in park! Come on, give me a break!

I have checked fuses, brake solenoid, and shift lock solenoid.  I have tried shift override.  Still stuck in park!  It seems that the rod that should move down when I push the shift button doesn't really move.  Why would it be stuck?  Will I do serious damage by trying to force it to move? I have shot plenty of liquid wrench in there.  
    This problem started giving me trouble over a period of weeks.  First it took me a few minutes, then 10 minutes to get it out of park.  Sometimes though no problem at all.  Now it is stuck it seems for good.  I haven't been able to drive my car for 2 and a half weeks.
    I need help!!  Any suggestions are appreciated!!  Thanks, Mark

Posted by on

  • markbaker77 Sep 20, 2009

    Thanks for the quick response. Shifter cable? I don't have a clue how to access that to check it out. Any suggestions?

  • markbaker77 Sep 20, 2009

    Okay, I 'fixed' it. Seems the plastic rod gets stuck pretty easily in place with the help of some coffee or soda. The previous owner was a complete slob, which explains the gunk under the cover. After I shot some cleaner in and around the shift rod I gave a solid whack with a hammer down on the rod. It moved enough to allow me to get out of park. Now it's stuck down, which lets me drive but not put it in park and take the key out. I will either keep cleaning and hope it loosens up or tape the switch to trick the car into thinking it's in park.

    Hope that helps anyone else with the same problem.



1 Answer

  • Level 1:

    An expert who has achieved level 1.

  • Contributor
  • 1 Answer

If its an automatic try the shifter cable it may be seezed up

Posted on Sep 20, 2009


1 Suggested Answer

  • 2 Answers

SOURCE: I have freestanding Series 8 dishwasher. Lately during the filling cycle water hammer is occurring. How can this be resolved

Hi there,
Save hours of searching online or wasting money on unnecessary repairs by talking to a 6YA Expert who can help you resolve this issue over the phone in a minute or two.

Best thing about this new service is that you are never placed on hold and get to talk to real repairmen in the US.

Here's a link to this great service

Good luck!

Posted on Jan 02, 2017


Add Your Answer

Uploading: 0%


Complete. Click "Add" to insert your video. Add



Related Questions:

1 Answer

Shift locked in park/2000 nissan xterra se

check battery volts should be 12.5 volts,if yes check see if you have rear brake lights.if no replace brake light fuse.if brake light fuse okay a faulty brake light switch or shift lock solenoid not working,when you apply brake the electrical circuit goes to shift lock solnoid so you can get transmission out of park.shift solenoid located centerconsole located near gear position indicator.

Sep 01, 2012 | Nissan Cars & Trucks

1 Answer

Can't shift out of park what could be causing this

Your shift-lock solenoid is not working. The solenoid is controlled by your brake lamp circuits. The first thing to do is to check your brake lamps to see if they are working.

If the brake lamps are working, the solenoid is most likely defective. If the brake lamps are not working, then you need to diagnose your brake lamp circuits to get your shifter working. Most likely cause would be the brake lamp switch or a short in the system that has caused the brake lamp fuse to blow.

Apr 07, 2012 | 1996 Subaru Legacy

1 Answer

What do you have to do to bypass the shift soleniod on a 1996 subaru outback

Park is locked unless the park interlock safety system senses you are stepping on the brake pedal, the lock out solenoid is powered by the brake light circuit, so the very first thing to do is check and see if you have working brake light.

Nov 12, 2011 | Cars & Trucks

1 Answer

Camry 97 shift stuck in park position

Hello. Welcome to FixYa. Please allow me to help out on this.

If your car is stuck in Park (the shifter won't move), you either have a blow nbrake light fuse, a bad brake light switch, or the shift interlock solenoid under the shifter is bad.

The fuse is the most common, followed by a failed or unplugged brake light switch. It is rare for the shift interlock solenoid to fail, however.

Oct 04, 2011 | 1997 Toyota Camry

2 Answers

My subaru wont go out of park sometimes. What can I do?


May 04, 2011 | 1993 Subaru Impreza

2 Answers

2004 Volvo s60 awd t 'stuck in park'

Check your brake lights and see if they are working. The solenoid in the shifter is energized by you stepping on the brake. If your break lights do not work... your stuck in park. This can be caused by a bad brake light switch located above your brake pedal or.... a blown hazard / brake light fuse. Check them first.....


Apr 17, 2011 | 1991 Volvo 240

2 Answers

Shifter is stuck in park. had to remove little cover over hole, by the shifter, to insert key into hole, to get shifter to remove shifter from park. what causes this and is it something i can fix on my...

I believe this vehicle is equipped with a shift lock that necessitates depressing the brake pedal before it can be shifted out of "Park". This is a safety feature designed into almost every car made nowadays to prevent unintended movement of the vehicle when shifting out of "Park". The Shift Lock solenoid is triggered by the brake light switch located near the top of the brake pedal arm. Starting with the "basics", check to see if the brake lights are working (they should illuminate when the brake pedal is pressed. If the brakes lights do not come on. then proceed to check the brake/stop light fuse. Replace if needed. Once the brake lights are functioning, the shift lock should "disengage" and allow you to shift out of "Park" when the brake pedal is pressed. If the fuses are okay, but still no brake lights, then the Brake Light Switch may need to be replaced.

Brake lights working but won't shift out of "Park"? Check for a separate fuse for the Shift Lock Solenoid. Replace if needed. Otherwise the Shift Lock Solenoid may need to be replaced. This will require disassembly of the console to access the part.

Apr 09, 2011 | Kia Optima Cars & Trucks

2 Answers

My 2004 checy aveo sometimes does not shift out of

These have a brake light switch that controls both the shift lock solenoid and the brake lamps, so chances are that if it is not a fuse then it is the brake light switch.

Nov 18, 2009 | 2004 Chevrolet Aveo

1 Answer

My van is stuck in park

first have somebody check if the brake lights at the rear of the van are working when you apply the brake pedal if they dont its a fuse for the brake lights if they do work its more than likely a shift lock solenoid

Sep 24, 2008 | 2001 Honda Odyssey

Not finding what you are looking for?
Cars & Trucks Logo

1,291 people viewed this question

Ask a Question

Usually answered in minutes!

Top Subaru Experts


Level 3 Expert

81400 Answers

Colin Stickland
Colin Stickland

Level 3 Expert

22359 Answers

Brandon Johnson
Brandon Johnson

Level 2 Expert

251 Answers

Are you a Subaru Expert? Answer questions, earn points and help others

Answer questions

Manuals & User Guides