Question about 2000 Subaru Outback

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Car intermittently loses all electrical power, when running or not. cables appear to be in good condition and are clean and tight. Everything goes, lights, ignition, dome lights, alarm system; a complete blackout

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Check the connection at the altenator and the other end of the ground away from the battery. grounds that have become corroded or loose have been known to cause strange problems. also check your main fuses in the engine compartment fuse box to make sure non are loose or corroded

Posted on Oct 03, 2009


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It is a difficult one to answer because it is intermittent and probably will not happen during a fault finding test. Intermittent faults in electrics generally are a result of bad earths ,rusted earths , loose battery terminals and cables into the terminals ,battery posts and terminals not shiny clean, loose connections in the harness, loose fuses holders and fuses harness connecters being dirty at the contact points and an electronic unit that has an internal (ECM) fault that occurs when the road is rough, bumps . For your problem I would be checking that all the connections into the ECM are clean and the connections are tight . Battery terminals and loose wires on the alternator. And one that happens sometimes ,heavy keys hanging from the ignition switch will sway back and forth and momentarily disconnect the run circuit. IT has been known to happen . So I think to be fair to the person doing the diagnostic check it would be akin to looking for a needle in a haystack while wearing brown coloured glasses. When it happens try to be aware of the exact circumstances at the time , how long the car was in operation, weather conditions (hot-cold), What you had working at the time (radio, lights , cigarette lighter, wipers what ever). Anything may seem unimportant at the time but may point to what is happening and so help the mechanic /electriciaan

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Sometimes the car starts sometimes it doesn't...when it doesn't, if you wiggle the battery cables it will start. we checked the battery, it's good, only a year old. Also, when you're driving, sometimes the...

If it will start after you 'wiggle' the battery cables, you don't have a tight connection. Remove the cables, clean all the connections with a wire brush, then make sure you firmly attach cables. Connections MUST be clean and tight. If you continue to have trouble, check the connections at the other end of the cables (starter and ground), as the 'wiggle fix' may be a loose or dirty connection at the other end of the cables. This is probably also the cause of your elec. problems, hopefully once connections are cleaned and tightened properly, all will be fixed.

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