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2010 Outback 2.5i Premium || manual tran || 65k
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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all. I searched the forums on this topic, but most of the existing questions come from folks who don't have as many miles or as new of a model. I am not automotively inclined, and need some direction: go to a dealer, try this first, etc.

Two days ago, my wife drove our Outback for 10 minutes, turned the car off, then turned it back on after 10 minutes. After 15 minutes of it's being on the second time (and the car being at a standstill in a car line), the red temperature indicator blinked, then went solid. She pulled over to let it cool, then put coolant in the overflow reservoir when she got home. The reservoir was nearly empty. The very next day, the exact same thing happened, in the exact same sequence - 10 minutes on, 10 off, 15 minutes on in a car line, then indicator came on again.

Today, I drove it into work. After about 5 minutes of driving, I pulled into a gas station, checked the cap, which wasn't hot, then slowly opened and got a little spray, so I closed it. Reservoir tank is full, no blockage in line from radiator to overflow tank. I drove it for 20 miles into work at around 60mph, heat on full blast. No temperature light.

What are my next steps?
 

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Car: 2008 Tribeca, 2010 LGT, Sold: 2005 XT Limited
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Take it to a dealer under warranty?

Most likely a fan relay isn't working if it is happening when you are sitting in traffic but not when you are moving at a good speed.

Note that overheating your engine can do serious damage, and it happens faster than you would expect. Get this fixed. The idiot light usually comes one close to catastrophic failure.
 

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Sounds like loss of coolant if your adding coolant. Could be anything from a cheap $1 clamp to a radiator that took a rock and is leaking. Stop driving it places till you get it figured out!! Over heating any engine will ruin it.
 

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03 H6 OBW & 06 WRX Sportwagon
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well, the overflow tank on most cars should stay 'almost empty'. That is, normal and HOT markings are usually very low, down inside the engine compartment. Even the markings are difficult to see.

It does seem as if a fan has failed but, in any event, a mechanic is likely needed.
 

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2010 Outback 2.5i Premium || manual tran || 65k
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Discussion Starter #5
The mechanic says that both fans (primary and secondary) had blown a fuse. He suspects the fan control module, but can't guarantee that that is the problem. Do I have them put a new one in? Or, is this something I can put in?
 

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Rare item to have fail safe to have them do it. Given your prior questions I'm just guessing your not exactly a weekend do it your self type to start with.
 

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did the car recently drive thru very high water? could have put too much drag on the fan blades I guess. (check the back side of the radiator in case the blades pushed into it)

didn't know there was a fan module. I always figured the ECU just turned the relay(s) on/off.
 

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did the car recently drive thru very high water? could have put too much drag on the fan blades I guess. (check the back side of the radiator in case the blades pushed into it)

didn't know there was a fan module. I always figured the ECU just turned the relay(s) on/off.
Interesting. The Crazy Russians are known for putting a manual cut off switch to the fans for high water crossings. The fans are made to move air not water and running them through deep water can burn out the motor or blow the relay that powers them.
 

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Interesting. The Crazy Russians are known for putting a manual cut off switch to the fans for high water crossings. The fans are made to move air not water and running them through deep water can burn out the motor or blow the relay that powers them.
maybe I read that from a post of yours in the past?

longshot but, thought I'd mention it.
 

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The mechanic says that both fans (primary and secondary) had blown a fuse. He suspects the fan control module, but can't guarantee that that is the problem. Do I have them put a new one in? Or, is this something I can put in?
A mechanic shouldn't throw parts at it, they should diagnose it and determine if that is in fact the fault. Anything less, and you need a new mechanic.

Is the car still under warranty?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks all. Both fans are running fine now with new fuses. They ran it for three hours continuously, and nothing blew. Is the consensus of the contributors here that a good mechanic will be able to tell me on the day I bring the car in whether an intermittant problem like this is the fan control module, wire harness in, wire harness out, or the ecm? If so, I suppose the next step is to find another mechanic.

@tdelker: The car has 65k miles, so no longer covered.
 

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There wasn't enough information. It sound to me that they put in new fuses and they blew again, or they didn't even put in new fuses but were just expecting that you needed a new control unit.

Intermittent problems are different and much more difficult to catch. Then you need a really good mechanic :) But it sounds like they figured this one out. Ask them to show you where the fuses are and have a stack of spares on hand, just in case.

Tom
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Today the temperature light came on again. Subaru doesn't have reliable hours in my area, so I'm taking it back to the original mechanic. I see a new fan control module in my future.
 
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