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Hello Internet,

The Voice control, answer, and end call buttons in my 2012 Subaru outback random went out a few months ago. I was driving, ended a call and then I couldn't answer the next one. I've repaired the phone, tried other phones, bought a new phone and the controls are still unresponsive and the prompt for voice controls doesn't play.

The volume and search toggles work, as does the cruise control on the opposite side. The rest of the audio system works including the bluetooth connection, plays music, screen displays text, and calls answered by phone come over the system.

Does this sound like a fuse, a connection, or firmware issue? I haven't found any articles or videos on the project.

I've tried new phones, and disconnecting the battery.

Please Help, I spend a lot of time on the road.
 

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Easy, sort of

I had the same issue with my '11. It was intermittent at first, but eventually stopped working. I was able to fix it by removing the steering wheel, disassembling the controls, and cleaning the switch contacts with electrical parts cleaner. It sounds daunting, but it turns out it was pretty easy. Just be sure to fully drain your battery before disconnecting and reconnecting the airbag. Also, I didn’t put the steering wheel angle sensor back where it was originally, so I had to replace it after breaking it. Before you Remove the steering wheel, put it in it’s level straight resting place. This will make putting the steering wheel sensor reinstall easy. Also, when you remove the wheel, tape the sensor in place so it doesn’t rotate.
 
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