2016 Outback Bump-steer - Subaru Outback - Subaru Outback Forums
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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-14-2018, 01:09 AM Thread Starter
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2016 Outback Bump-steer

Before I bother with taking my car in again just to pay $45 to be told that "it seemed to drive normal" and "It's probably your tires" I figure maybe I should ask here, does anyone else experience some nasty bump-steer with their Outback? Mine has done this since day one (for me, bought at 32k miles CPO) and I noticed it the night I got it. It did not get any worse when I changed to all-terrain tires.

Specifically, the back end shifts around when driving over bumps or manhole covers. From paying closer attention to it more recently so I can nail down as many details before I take it back in for this, it's most pronounced from the RR wheel, and pulls the rear and towards the right. Low speeds it's not as prominent, but at higher speed it's very noticeable. It makes the car really unpleasant to drive, especially with how bad the roads are around here.

This issue is really starting to drive me nuts the longer I live with it. Has anyone else had this? Did the dealer do anything about it, and if so, what was done so I may be able to point mine in the right direction?


_Harrison
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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-14-2018, 01:51 AM
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The Outback seems like the rear is sprung very softly and that the rates front to rear aren't matched very well. I noticed a weird float/skipping sensation when going over bumps from day one. I upgraded the rear sway bar and it improved the handling greatly. I have since put on RalliTEK springs and that has tightened up the handling significantly. The are stiffer, so there is a new quick bounce introduced into the handling, but I find it more predictable than the floaty feeling.

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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-14-2018, 01:04 PM
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Sounds normal. I notice it more pronounced going over RR tracks. If you are in a turn while doing it, it’s REAL bad.
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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-14-2018, 01:21 PM
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I've never noticed any bump steer in mine. Holds a line very well when hitting potholes.

The only thing I've noticed (which has been consistent with every car I've owned) is the rear dances around when hitting a big bump at highway speeds while nearly doubling the yellow "recommended" speeds around highway interchanges. Only way to fix that is to drive like a normal person.

Have you spent any time looking at the rear suspension components and the sheet metal structure they bolt to? It sounds like something is bent. Previous owner could have hit some road debris and slightly tweaked something.


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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-14-2018, 02:04 PM
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I would 1st, check your alignment, the Gen5 allows for some toe-out in the rear, however, if too much one side or the other, then the car will not track correctly.

I would also recommend .... yep, you guessed it.

https://www.subaruoutback.org/forums...k-cke-ssp.html

Particularly the performance rear sway bar bushings.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/173347733959
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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-14-2018, 04:48 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stormrunner001 View Post
I've never noticed any bump steer in mine. Holds a line very well when hitting potholes.

The only thing I've noticed (which has been consistent with every car I've owned) is the rear dances around when hitting a big bump at highway speeds while nearly doubling the yellow "recommended" speeds around highway interchanges. Only way to fix that is to drive like a normal person.

Have you spent any time looking at the rear suspension components and the sheet metal structure they bolt to? It sounds like something is bent. Previous owner could have hit some road debris and slightly tweaked something.
I have not looked under it, I kinda bought this for the purpose of not needing to crawl around underneath it, haha. Mine does it pretty badly at normal speeds, I don't even bother taking interchanges quickly in it, as it just results in tire howl, body roll and sadness.

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Originally Posted by jnmarshall View Post
Sounds normal. I notice it more pronounced going over RR tracks. If you are in a turn while doing it, it’s REAL bad.
Yes, it's far worse when you hit a bump mid-corner at highway speed, but I would definitely not call it normal. Out of the 20-ish cars I've owned, the only other one to do something similar was my rusted-out $200 Toyota, and even that wasn't as bad, and only did it in corners over nasty potholes.

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Originally Posted by traildogck View Post
I would 1st, check your alignment, the Gen5 allows for some toe-out in the rear, however, if too much one side or the other, then the car will not track correctly.

I would also recommend .... yep, you guessed it.

https://www.subaruoutback.org/forums...k-cke-ssp.html

Particularly the performance rear sway bar bushings.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/173347733959
The alignment was supposedly checked when I first brought it to the dealer for this, and they said everything was fine... no spec sheet provided though, which seemed a bit suspect.

_Harrison
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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-14-2018, 10:28 PM
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Both my 15 and 16 did it until I installed STI rear sway bar. There was a left hand turn on my daily commute that drove me crazy. It was totally eliminated it on both vehicles once the sway bar was swapped.
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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-14-2018, 10:43 PM
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I went over some depressed man hole covers today. Was trying to feel this issue. I don't feel there is a problem with mine. Perhaps this happens when the pavement rises instead of drops?

Try a rising bump in my wife's Chrysler 200 and the rear jerks to one side especially when the bump is only on one side. I find that car dangerous when the roads are coated with ice chunks. That suspension is not designed right! I don't feel it is very safe.

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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-15-2018, 09:41 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by dwnthehatch View Post
Both my 15 and 16 did it until I installed STI rear sway bar. There was a left hand turn on my daily commute that drove me crazy. It was totally eliminated it on both vehicles once the sway bar was swapped.
Seems odd that a sway bar would solve something that behaves like a toe-out alignment issue. Not saying I don't believe you, just odd to me, and good to know that helped in your situation. I'd rather not have to come out of pocket to add something to correct their poor design, but so it may have to be. Thank you!

Was this just a direct swap with the appropriate bushings from a similar-year STI?

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2wheel View Post
I went over some depressed man hole covers today. Was trying to feel this issue. I don't feel there is a problem with mine. Perhaps this happens when the pavement rises instead of drops?

Try a rising bump in my wife's Chrysler 200 and the rear jerks to one side especially when the bump is only on one side. I find that car dangerous when the roads are coated with ice chunks. That suspension is not designed right! I don't feel it is very safe.
I've noticed it on both depressions (potholes, manhole covers) and rises (crap pavement seams) in mine. I only drove my Outback in the snow once as I got it at the tail end of winter, but I'd imagine if it did what it's doing now on ice and snow, that could really cause some clinching.

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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 10-16-2018, 09:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by projekt-h View Post
Seems odd that a sway bar would solve something that behaves like a toe-out alignment issue. Not saying I don't believe you, just odd to me, and good to know that helped in your situation. I'd rather not have to come out of pocket to add something to correct their poor design, but so it may have to be. Thank you!

Was this just a direct swap with the appropriate bushings from a similar-year STI?



I've noticed it on both depressions (potholes, manhole covers) and rises (crap pavement seams) in mine. I only drove my Outback in the snow once as I got it at the tail end of winter, but I'd imagine if it did what it's doing now on ice and snow, that could really cause some clinching.

I originally bought the sway bar (direct bolt on with new larger bushings) to improve the handling. On my normal morning commute, I have to make a left from an overpass onto a ramp to get to the highway. There is a metal expansion joint separating the two surfaces. Prior to the sway bar installation, the rear of the car skipped or kicked out whenever making the turn at speed. After installing it, the "skipping" was eliminated on both my 15 and 16. The swaybar is the only suspension modification I made on my outbacks. I had a loaner rental 18 outback that also skipped over the joint.

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