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2017 Outback Limited 2.5
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6 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Early June I bought a 2002 LL Bean with 142k miles. The next morning when I turned the key, nothing happened, no clicks, nothing. After a few turns of the key it fired up. I had the battery checked and it was borderline so I dropped in a new Interstate. A couple weeks later on the morning start the same thing happened. A few turns of the key and it started. It is not consistent but is now happening every morning when I start. It has done it once in the afternoon after sitting for around 8 hours.

Any suggestions on what to check? Thanks
 

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'14 3.6R Outback
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2,345 Posts
Reminds me of some on here having trouble with the immobilizer...
 

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18,055 Posts
Lots of posts here with similar, if not the exact same symptoms. In many cases, the starter solenoid plunger can be sticking. Each time the key is turned to Start the plunger moves a bit more, and eventually it will travel the distance necessary to engage the start gear and connect the battery cable through to the starter motor winding. Once it's freed up, it will work fine until it's left unused for some time, such as overnight.

The way to verify this is to measure the voltage a the small, single wire terminal toward the back of the starter solenoid first thing in the morning when the problem is sure to appear. When the key is at Start, there should be 12 V (battery voltage) at the terminal. If there is, yet the starter doesn't run to turn over the engine, it's a faulty solenoid.

The solenoid can be removed and refurbished -- cleaned, relubed, replace the large high current contact -- or replaced. Some just replace the whole starter unit with a rebuilt.
 
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