Question about 1993 Subaru Legacy

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My sons informs me his 1993 subaru legacy VR has had the CHECK ENGINE light on for the past 2 months and now he brings it to me as it wont start up quick enough for him. Oil & water are fine and for the fist 4-6 tries at starting it fires but wont keep running. Is as simple as changing the air filter or something more involved? Cheers Alistair

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Unfortunately, it's more involved and complex than an air filter. (Don't we just love our kids?). The Check Engine Light will illuminate when a "Sensor" has a "hard" Fault Code. Some people like to purchase a Code Scanner yet even when they find the code or codes, that's just a starting place for one to understand as to Why it generated a Fault, read within the Computer. When the Check Engine Light is on, this means the Engine is running in what's known as "Open Loop", or a pre-determined set of values for fuel, timing, spark and things of that nature.

Your son has run the car for 2 months in this condition and could have damaged more sensors in doing so, such as the O2 Sensor, for the quality of the combustible gasses went down as soon as the Check Engine light came on, which isn't to say that the Catalytic Converter could have been damaged as well.

If I were in your situation, I would obtain a Haynes Manual for the year and type of vehicle you're working on as well as finding coupons for "free Check Engine Light diagnosis." Or have your son buy the Haynes Manual on HIS car as well as a cheap Code Scanner AND the Haynes Techbook on Electronic Engine Management Systems. This will explain in layman's terms what the various sensors do and where they "live" under the hood.

I wish I could've been more help, but my nephew recently brought me his Volvo S60 because he said it "ran rough" only to find he had blown the Engine.

Best of Luck and re-post this if you feel I haven't helped you much.

~Buck Lewis~

"Still living on the Right Side of Dirt..."

Posted on Jun 06, 2010

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An air filter is a good place to start, but i'm thinking you should check the fuel filter and fuel pump, a dealership will be able to find out why the check engin light is on

Posted on Jun 06, 2010

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It is a sensor, which are very expensive, i run my with the ligh on, but now it's time to get it fixed

Posted on Aug 05, 2010

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