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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My 2010 outback has lost electric power to:
the radio
climate control unit (but fan still had power)
digital clock & MPG etc unit on top of dash
& some digital readouts in the dash (digital readout above speedometer including door open display and manual transmission gear read out)

In July, I started the car and these electronics didn't work. I drove a mile or so, turned off the car and re-started and it all worked worked fine. 1 or 2 days later, the battery was dead with a bad cell. Dealer replaced battery but cold not find cause for electronic problems. Dealer blamed the bad battery.

Today, Feb 19th, same thing happened. started car, no electronics, drove 1 mile, turned off car and re-started. Everything works now. Car now out of warranty.

Anybody else have this problem?
Anybody know the cause?
Is this a common problem?

Any help is appreciated.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
See post/thread in Maintenance and problems.



2010 outback. no power to
radio
climate control unit (but fan has power)
digital clock on top of dash and MPG Trip read out etc.
lost digital readout indash above speedometer (doors open, gear indicator for manual trans, etc.)

Re-start car and it works fine.

Happened once in July followed by dead battery a few days later. Dealer replaced battery and blamed low voltage as cause.

Happened again today. Re-started car and now fine. (Feb 2013).

Car now out of warranty.

Anybody else have this problem?
know what the cause is?

Any help is appreciated.
 

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Premium Member
01 VDC, 05 R Sedan, 06 BAJA EJ257
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16,261 Posts
When you say its not working, do you intend its not lighting up or its not working at all?
 

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Premium Member
01 VDC, 05 R Sedan, 06 BAJA EJ257
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16,261 Posts
Check the dimmer switch. If it checks out good and it wasn't inadvertently turned down, then the next associate parts are the microcomputer in the instrument cluster or the BIU.
 

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Premium Member
01 VDC, 05 R Sedan, 06 BAJA EJ257
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16,261 Posts
Check the Dimmer Switch. Other than that, the microcomputer in the cluster or BIU.
 

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Gallery Ninja, ,
2004 Outback "Bluebaru" & 2005 Outback XT
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5,192 Posts
Even though the lights are out on the climate control, do the controls still work even though they are not lit? ie: switch from defrost to say, floor heat, and so on.
 

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In regard to the radio, does it not work at all (including loading/playing CDs if one is inserted) or is it just that the lighting (knobs, button, display) doesn't work? This will distinguish between a panel lighting issue, which is what the dimmer that cardoc mentioned would affect, and a power problem. (I'm assuming the car has the regular audio and HVAC system.)

In regard to power, according to the wiring diagram, the radio has two "always on" 12 V sources, and one switched source (FB-22). The switched source also powers the BIU and HVAC control panel FB-24) so this provides some commonality. (They have different fuses, but both go back to the ACC position of the ignition switch.)

FB-24 powers the BIU, which supplies the input data to the multi-information display (clock, MPG info etc). If the ACC power to FB-24 is missing, the BIU would be partially disabled and the MID would not have any display.

eaglerock: When the radio etc does not work, before shutting down or doing anything else, check to see if control for the remote (side) mirrors works, and if any of the accessory power supply sockets work. If they do not, then the problem could be in the ignition switch -- there's an intermittent problem in the ACC contacts.

On my 07, when I turn the ignition key from Lock to ACC, the display panel of the radio shows "Subaru" for a few seconds and then goes off (radio otherwise is not turned on). I'm not sure if it's the same with the 2010, but if it is, then try switching only to ACC before going on to start the car. See if the radio display comes on. If it doesn't then turn the key to Lock and then back to ACC. If the display comes on, that would, in my view, narrow it down to the ignition switch.
 

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2011 Legacy GT SSM
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254 Posts
Same problem here. It just started on Friday. Of course it was right after I left the DMV with my new plates.
 

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SubaruOutback.org Founder
2021 Outback Limited 2.5L - 🍦The Ice Cream Man🍦
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5,645 Posts
I just began experiencing this issue, exactly at the time the warranty ran out :mad:

If anyone has any ideas about a solution please let us know. It seems that this is not an isolated incident but rather something that is affecting more than a few 2010 Outbacks.
 

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SubaruOutback.org Founder
2021 Outback Limited 2.5L - 🍦The Ice Cream Man🍦
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5,645 Posts
I just began experiencing this issue, exactly at the time the warranty ran out :mad:

If anyone has any ideas about a solution please let us know. It seems that this is not an isolated incident but rather something that is affecting more than a few 2010 Outbacks.
 

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2010 Subaru Outback 2.5i Limited
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88 Posts
Subscribed. I'm curious to know what the problem behind this issue.

Did you check the battery cables? Do they need some cleaning?
Did you check fuses? Anything that perhaps need replacing?

Last time I had issue similar to this was on my Honda Civic. It turned out to be caused by some damaged/exposed wiring on the harness causing this weird, phantom electrical problems. On another car, I had issue where the turning signal switch on the steering wheel was damaged, causing yet another phantom electrical issues and battery drain. The harness was not an easy problem to fix. Dealer will not want to patch up the wiring due to liability issues. I ended up finding a mechanic that knows his way around electrical wiring.
 

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I had this same problem and noticed headlights and hazard lights worked fine but power was go to AC and radio. When I turned off the car the ignition stuck and clicked. When I restarted the car immediately after everything worked fine again. Pretty sure it is an ignition switch problem.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Feb 21 2015. Happened again. Radio and stuff including indicator lights on heated seat switches stopped working after starting car. Turned off car and re-started. Then everything worked fine.

Anybody else have this problem with their 2010 outback. Mind has Manual transmission
 

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Our 2010 Legacy did this when the ground cable on the battery had heavy corrosion under the insulation it looked fine but under the insulation cover the wire was nearly gone. The original battery was venting around the post and causing heavy corrosion under the insulation. Replaced the battery and the neg cable and everything was fine again.
 

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SubaruOutback.org Founder
2021 Outback Limited 2.5L - 🍦The Ice Cream Man🍦
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I think I've found the solution to this problem and it is quite simple. Recently this issue occurred and I began slowly turning my key (in the ignition) backwards as if to turn the car off. Suddenly the power to everything came back on. Ever since then when the power does not come on for everything I just slowly rotate the key back and everything works. Its really just that simple at least in my Outback. Try it out and let us know if it works for you. You don't have to move the key hardly at all to get this to work, there must be some hypersensitive connection within the ignition that is causing this issue.
 
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