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Discussion Starter #1
Hey all,

New to the forums and not sure if this is the one I need to post in or another. If it's wrong I'm sorry.

I purchased a 2005 outback LL Bean in July of last year with 112000 mile's on it. I now have 124000. Recently I have noticed that my MPG has dropped from about 17/18 city to 12. 12mpg in city? Granted it is winter here, but I do run the highest octain I can at the pump usualy 92/94 I think. I just replaced a wheel bearing in the rear but I doubt that would have anything to do with it.

The instant mpg in town has dropped to around 2.5 even when the car is warm from a stop light, that doesn't seem right.

I think it needs plugs as I haven't changed them since I bought it, but i doubt that would drop it so low. (Not sure if the dealer changed them.) I did have a code pop up one day that was sensor 1 bank 1 (I forget the number) but we cleared it and it never came back. I work at a parts store so I have tried the additives but that hasn't seemed to work.


I'm getting frustrated and have told my wife that I don't want to keep throwing money at it and will trade it in if this keeps up. I don't want to as I love the car but it's just getting worse.

Any help or insite would be apriciated. Thank you.
 

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2005 Outback, 3.0, LL Bean Ed.
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32 Posts
I have the same vehicle as you. I get 21mpg on every tank of premium fuel.
I suggest replacing the spark plugs and air filter. the plugs require changing
every 60k. You might be running the originals. If you pay a dealer for the replacements,it is not cheap. I changed my own. the plugs are 20 bucks each
and doing the job yourself the first time is not a walk in the park.

Just make sure that whoever changes the plugs does it on a cold engine. You are probably due for a new drive belt and idler and tensioner pullys. That is easy to do. This car is definately worth putting some maintenance into. You might want to think about changing the diff lubes and having a trans flush performed. This really is a great car and worth the expense.
 

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2005 Outback Sedan 3.0R
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72 Posts
I have a '05 3.0R and get around 20 - 23mpg. I agree with changing the plugs and air filter first. Then give it a tank to see if mpg's have changed. If after than they are still really low then you may have a lazy o2 sensor at which time I'd have the computer scanned for any pending codes. You may also make sure that the car is warming up. A stuck open thermostat will definitely kill mpg's.
 

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2011 Tacoma TRD Sport Double Cab Long Box
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2,893 Posts
The mileage on all of our Subarus has dropped off dramatically the past two weeks or so. My 2008 L.L. Bean (3.0R) is getting 17 mixed. Our H4s aren't doing a whole lot better, either. Not sure where you're located, but I think it's the weather doing it here. Every morning has been sub-zero lately.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I live up in Maine, so we have the "Winter Gas" and very cold weather. I will be changing the spark plugs and air filter as soon as I can. I think the diffs need to have their oil changed as well.
 

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One small item to check is your tire pressures, they tend to drop with lower temps. I've also had success running ethanol free gas located with an app called "pure gas". Corn for cows, gasoline for cars.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I've switched over to Shell gas recently so I'll see how that goes. We are having the plugs changed in about a week.

As for Pure Gas, the app tells me that the closest station is 27 miles away in Dexter, Maine.. probably not the best for us atm haha.

I did put some Techron in it recently and seems to help a bit. I'll update when we change the plugs and air filter.

Oh and the tire pressures are right where they need to be, I work at a service bay so I make sure and keep them correct.
 
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