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2003 AT Noise

1025 Views 8 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  1 Lucky Texan
Good Morning,

We have a high mileage 2003 Outback with an AT. There is an increasingly loud whine coming from under/front of vehicle only when it is in gear. Pop the car into neutral at any speed and the noise stops. The mechanic that looked at it indicated that the noise was coming from the "transaxle."

My first question, which he could not answer, is whether I can replace just the transaxle and not the entire transmission...?

Secondly, whatever I need to replace, (Transaxle or Transmission/Transaxle assembly) does anyone have any suggestions for somewhere online to look...? I've done some research and tried several places with no luck, however, I was looking for the entire transmission. If I can get away with just the transaxle perhaps I can find one....

Thanks in advance for any responses....
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· Premium Member
(formerly) 03 H6 OBW , (presently) 06 WRX Sportwagon & 2021 Honda CR-V
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19,149 Posts
have you checked the front diff's fluid level? That dipstick is on the other side from the transmission DS. (US pass side - might be covered in grime)

If you lost some of that fluid, say - from a bad seal - the front differential could easily be under-lubricated and noisy. (though, it's odd that in neutral the noise stops - still, diff and transmission could behave differently under load)

The front diff can be repaired or replaced separately but that may be impractical compared ot the cost of an entire tranny/diff unit.

maybe someone here could suggest a different mechanic near you that has good subaru experience. This has the possibility of being expensive and second opinions are probably worth the time/$ to acquire.
 

· Premium Member
(formerly) 03 H6 OBW , (presently) 06 WRX Sportwagon & 2021 Honda CR-V
Joined
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19,149 Posts
have looked for a trans on Car-Part.com--Used Auto Parts Market ? sort your search by distance, shipping will add at least $150? if you have to ship, sort by price and see if you can find a deal.

FYI: used part prices in VA get higher the closer you get to richmond and DC.
yep^^^

and, some of the parts listed on ebay are possibly local to you if you're in a larger municipla area. A guy here at work just had his Ford 1.9 liter Escort drop a valve seat. He found rebuilt heads on ebay and one of the better prices is from a town just east of his home.
 
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