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Old 09-17-2012, 02:32 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Question "Driveability kit"

On my 2011 Outback, despite regular rotations, balancing, alignments and nitrogen, I had a vibration problem that the dealer diagnosed as baddy cupped and unevenly worn tires -after only 30K miles. He recommended replacing the OEM tires with better tires, and, if that didn't help, that he could install (under warranty) a "Drivability Kit". He seemed to be deliberatly vague about exactly what the kit was or did.

Does anybody have an experience with the "Drivability Kit"? Is it to fix suspension design problems that cause excessive tire wear, or is it something that simply reduces the road feel? I'm wondering if it should go on before or after the new tires are installed, or if it has any value whatever.

Any input would be appreciated.
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Old 09-17-2012, 02:47 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Subaru has a fix - for a small number of cars which had some type of suspension bushing or alignment issue causing a strong vibration. However the first check is to make sure the tires are not the cause given any car will have a bad vibration if the tires are junk. The Continental tires are terrible at holding balance and mine at 40K are complete and utter garbage with one tire thats egg shaped.

Replacing them with BFG touring tires soon. Our car was shake free till the tires lost balance about every 9000 miles and the local tire shop would need to make very large changes to the weights on all 4 tires which they agreed was odd and not normal for tires that were of decent quality etc.

As for cupping AWD you need to rotate the tires its simply a must or you end up with the front tires getting worn pretty badly on the outer shoulders and can get cupping if the alignment is off a tad. My Sequoia is the same way the tires need to be rotated on a fairly regular basis to keep them all wearing even.

Have a local respected tire shop balance your current tires and ask for the details on what it took to get them balanced etc. ROTATE your tires front to back if you have not done it!

If you have a tire like I do which is not round - make sure it stays on the rear given when on the front it will shake the steering wheel regardless of being balanced or not.

Start researching your tire replacement choices even at 30K the Continentals are pretty lousy tires so not like your loosing much by replacing them before winter gets bad.
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Old 09-17-2012, 03:00 PM   #3 (permalink)
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You may have been bitten by the "shakes":

Steering Wheel Shake Issues - Subaru Outback - Subaru Outback Forums

As far as the "fix", it seemed to help most people suffering through this debacle, but not 100%. If your dealership is willing to do it, I'd let them if new tires don't solve the issue.

Only thing that makes me hesitant to call this the "shakes" is that it only popped up after so many miles. The 2010-2011 OB's seem to be very sensitive to any imbalance, so new tires and a good road force balancing might be all you need.
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Old 09-17-2012, 03:15 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fatabbot View Post
You may have been bitten by the "shakes":

Steering Wheel Shake Issues - Subaru Outback - Subaru Outback Forums

As far as the "fix", it seemed to help most people suffering through this debacle, but not 100%. If your dealership is willing to do it, I'd let them if new tires don't solve the issue.

Only thing that makes me hesitant to call this the "shakes" is that it only popped up after so many miles. The 2010-2011 OB's seem to be very sensitive to any imbalance, so new tires and a good road force balancing might be all you need.
For sure do not let the dealer start tearing into your suspension with the subaru patch solution for the "Shaker" cars till you have the tires 100% confirmed to not be your issue!

Anytime you have a dealer fix something thats not broke you introduce a whole new set of issues that you may not have had before.

Get the horrible Continental tires delt with first!!!!!!!!
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