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I had the issue of cruise control not working when my cruise control light on the dash button was on and engaged. My issues was a dirty/gummed up cruise control lever. Cleaned it and it resolved the issue.


Please feel free to chime in. I would like to compile a check list/diagnostic that people could look at when their cruise control isn’t working. There seems to be multiple threads with information on the subject and it would be nice to condense them.


These are not in any particular order..

Trouble shooting checks:

1) Check Cruise control fuse on drivers side fuse panel.

2) Brake lights all in good working order?

3) Verify clock spring is working: Does the horn not work? Does the air bag light not go off after ignition? If you have these symptoms, it is very likely your cruise control issue can be resolved by replacing the clock spring. Video here: I guess since this is my first post I can post links.... YouTube search “subaru clock spring”. It is the first video that pops up. The owner is “David Bello”.

4) When you activate the dash cruise control switch can you hear the solienoid activate/click under the dash?

5) On the brake and clutch (if manual transmission) there is a plunger switch that should be fully engaged when the brakes/clutch are not being depressed. There is a rubber/plastic disc mounted to the brake/clutch that should be contacting the plunger switch. If the plastic/rubber disc is missing the switch is not being fully depressed. Replace disc. If the plunger does not extend when brake/clutch is depressed you should replace the switch.

6) If all of these check out it could be the switch on the steering wheel. Use the above video (check 3) to access the switch and clean with contact cleaner. If you do not want to get that involved a less desired remedy may be reached by spraying contact cleaner or WD-40(not recommended as it collects dust) through the trim shroud into the switch and move switch in all directions.



Cheers
 

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2004 H6-LLBean Outback Wagon
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A few years ago, I noticed my cruise control would only occasionally engage... rather that performing the above checks (while certainly more thorough than my troubleshooting), I noticed the lever on the steering wheel felt sort of gummy/spongy.


A few spray treatments with contact cleaner through the hole next to the lever got rid of the gummy/spongy feel, but it would still only intermittently engage.

A single squirt of WD-40, and it engages perfectly over a year later.


Unless there's some other obvious issue, I recommend a few squirts of contact cleaner until the lever seems to move more freely and then a squirt of WD-40 (or whatever else might work similarly) to provide a bit of lubrication. No need to take anything apart, no fuses to pull for air bags, no hassle.

I suspect the cruise lever being dirty is probably a very common cruise control issue on these cars since they all have the "old style" cruise levers and they're all getting older.
 

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03 H6 OBW & 06 WRX Sportwagon
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noticing some of these issues intermittently on our 03. Good the read a spray lube/cleaner could help.
 
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