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2010 Subaru Outback Limited 2.5i CVT
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The other day I was cruising home and I noticed that the "Brake" light on the left side of the dash. I quickly reacted and put my foot on the breaks to find there was nothing wrong with them. I drove home and when I parked I checked the brake fluid resevoir to find the apporpriate amount of fluid was in the system and checked the sensor attached to it. I found nothing wrong. I took my car up to a hill and decided to do a few more tries with troubleshooting. I started at the top of the hill and put the car into neutral and turned the parking break on. The parking break locked. I then turned off the parking brake and braked down and slowed at various speed to ensure the integrity of my brakes, I will also mention that I heard no sqeaking indicting the brakes still have life. There is no fluid leaking from my car, and as far as I know the brakes were replaced not too long before I came into possession of the car. I assume a sensor is tripping the light off, but the car seems fine to drive; although I do with extreme caution. Please shed some knowledge on me. I like figuring things out my self, but I can see no reason for the "Brake" light to be flashing. Especially before school starts this fall. Offer insight or anything. I want to resolve this issue and if anyone has had a similiar issue I would like to here feedback. Thanks!

-Erik
 

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2017 Outback Limited -2.5 CVT ---- 'Gone' 2014 Outback Limited - 2.5 CVT ---- 'Rehomed' 2012 Outback Limited - 2.5 CVT - Deep Indigo Pearl ---- "RIP" 2010 Outback - 2.5 CVT - Silver - So's my hair
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How many miles on current brake pads? When is your scheduled inspection (Pennsylvania right?).

'I know the brakes were replaced not too long before I came into possession of the car.' Maybe - Maybe Not...

Sounds like they might be worn. Sensors are designed to warn you before they are 'down to the rivets'.

Take to a mechanic to be sure.

Most chain repair shops will inspect and diagnose issue before the 'hard sell'.
 

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A flashing Brake warning light indicates a fault detected by the on-board diagnostics as opposed to something like low brake fluid (in which case the light is on steady). One possibility is a malfunction in the electronic parking brake system. This is mentioned in the Owners Manual (pages 3-17 and 3-18).

Worn brake pads leads to low fluid in the brake reservoir, and would result in a steady warning light. As far as I know, there is no electronic sensor that indicates when the pads are low and flashes the Brake warning light.
 

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2010 Subaru Outback Limited 2.5i CVT
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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
It is interestingyou say this because when I first noticed the light flashing I did not here the parking brake engage the way it normally did, in 2010 there is no audio in the car that goes off instead you here the parking break engage via a whirring sound that a electronic motor makes... I believe. Though i did here a large difference because there was no whirring, even though when I was on the hill the parking break did engage and stop me while in neutral. So, I am getting near my wits and about to take off a wheel or two to check the pads for myself. I will either get this checked by a mechanic if I do not oncover anything else, and I have texted the orevious owner to see when the brakes were last replaced, if he did replace them. Thank you very uch fro your insight!!!!
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I also thought that, but realized that brakes normally will sqeak when they are running low and serve as a warning for the driver because no one regularly checks the wear on thier brakes; even though they should... Well... I should haha
 

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On the 2010, the parking brake system is much the same as in earlier years with a manual lever to engage the parking brake, except, instead of a lever pulling cables to engage the brake, there's an electric motor and gear set up.

As in earlier years, the parking brake system does not use the rear disc brake pads. Instead, there's a brake drum built into the rear rotors, and inside the drum area there's brake shoes. When the parking brake cable is pulled, the shoes move out to engage the inner circumference of the drum. In order to check the parking brake the rear rotor has to be removed (same as in older cars with drum brakes).

The only scan tool I know that can read the ABS/VDC Brake codes when there's a problem is the dealer's Subaru Select Monitor. Some independent garages might have a similar, Subaru-specific tool. But it might be helpful to check for codes related to the brake system as it could identify the source of the problem.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Well when I check the brakes I will definately check the rotors! That is very interesting that there would be a drum brake within a brake rotor that uses calipers. Sounds a little innecessary, but the engineers had their reasons.
 

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2017 Outback, 2.5L, Auto; 2018 Forester, 2.5L, Auto (for Mama); 2005 Baja, 2.5 Turbo, Manual
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Well when I check the brakes I will definately check the rotors! That is very interesting that there would be a drum brake within a brake rotor that uses calipers. Sounds a little innecessary, but the engineers had their reasons.
Actually, that's common practice for cars with rear disk brakes -- the regular brakes use the disk, and what looks like the hub is actually a brake drum for the parking brakes. My guess is that it's cheaper and easier than figuring out how to make a cable pull squeeze the rear caliper.
 

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I had the same problems the BREAK LIGHT and Yellowish Traction light came on the Break Light was flashing on the dash. I checked and found my drivers side rear break light was burnt out. Looked at a youtube video on how to change the light, very simple procedure. Pack of 2 Sylvania 7440 lights for $10 and 10 minutes and all was fixed.
 

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1999 30th Anniversary Legacy Outback DOHC 2.5L 4EAT, 2008 Impreza WRX 2.5L 5MT, 2008 Impreza Wagon 2.5L 4EAT
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To support what plainOM said. Here is a pic of the rear rotor

 

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1999 30th Anniversary Legacy Outback DOHC 2.5L 4EAT, 2008 Impreza WRX 2.5L 5MT, 2008 Impreza Wagon 2.5L 4EAT
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Rear parking brake shoes

 

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1999 30th Anniversary Legacy Outback DOHC 2.5L 4EAT, 2008 Impreza WRX 2.5L 5MT, 2008 Impreza Wagon 2.5L 4EAT
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Other manufacturers rotate the caliper piston to use the disc brakes as parking brakes (piston has grooves to make this work)





On this style of caliper you have to rotate the piston back into the caliper when putting on new pads with a special tool

 

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similar problem- flashing brake light

I have the same problem- the brake light is flashing - not constant. Along with that, the yellow 'check engine' light is on, and my 'Vehicle Dynamics Control' light is on (which means it isn't functioning). The Hill Holder button will not work- if I press it, it produces an error noise and the light does not appear on the dashboard like normal.
My brake fluid is at a normal level, and my brakes are not overly worn.

Any ideas? I'm about to buy the workshop manual but am open to any input. I'll go to mechanic if I can't find any leads.

Thanks,
Calum
 

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2012 3.6R
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I have the same problem- the brake light is flashing - not constant. Along with that, the yellow 'check engine' light is on, and my 'Vehicle Dynamics Control' light is on (which means it isn't functioning). The Hill Holder button will not work- if I press it, it produces an error noise and the light does not appear on the dashboard like normal.
My brake fluid is at a normal level, and my brakes are not overly worn.

Any ideas? I'm about to buy the workshop manual but am open to any input. I'll go to mechanic if I can't find any leads.

Thanks,
Calum
Same thing happened to me. Replaced gas cap and everything was fine.
 

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Where can I get a Full wiring schematic of a 2011 Outback 3.6R Limited?

I am having ABS Issues and cant find the 'Diagnostic Connector' under the dash and tired of the headache i get from laying down to look up in there. I know in the 6 pin plug-B82-, #6 pin needs to be grounded, then turn on the ignition and the ABS light will blink out the error codes. I know that the Wires from B82 go back to the ABS CPU on the hydraulic distributor and it would be Much easier to ground the wire out there, standing erect, with plenty of room and light to work in.

SO, Whats the wire color? What pin does it use on the ABS CPU? Any hep or pointers would be appreciated!!
 

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Well guys I had the same issue, the flashing BRAKE warning light, the VDC coming on as well. This would start after about 8-9 minutes of driving. I went to a mechanic friend who hooked it up to a scanner and it showed the brake switch was engaged. After we talked for a while i told him I had just changed the brake light bulbs because one had burned out and I had used LED bulbs. All these issues started the day after the bulb change. He told me that the car could be picking up a difference in resistance, so I went back and bought standard bulbs for my brake lights, and replaced the LED bulbs. This fixed everything, no more warning lights, no more VDC light.

So if you have changed bulbs lately, then the issued started, check your bulbs and replace.
 

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The other day I was cruising home and I noticed that the "Brake" light on the left side of the dash. I quickly reacted and put my foot on the breaks to find there was nothing wrong with them. I drove home and when I parked I checked the brake fluid resevoir to find the apporpriate amount of fluid was in the system and checked the sensor attached to it. I found nothing wrong. I took my car up to a hill and decided to do a few more tries with troubleshooting. I started at the top of the hill and put the car into neutral and turned the parking break on. The parking break locked. I then turned off the parking brake and braked down and slowed at various speed to ensure the integrity of my brakes, I will also mention that I heard no sqeaking indicting the brakes still have life. There is no fluid leaking from my car, and as far as I know the brakes were replaced not too long before I came into possession of the car. I assume a sensor is tripping the light off, but the car seems fine to drive; although I do with extreme caution. Please shed some knowledge on me. I like figuring things out my self, but I can see no reason for the "Brake" light to be flashing. Especially before school starts this fall. Offer insight or anything. I want to resolve this issue and if anyone has had a similiar issue I would like to here feedback. Thanks!

-Erik
I had the same problems - the BREAK LIGHT and Yellowish Traction light came on the Break Light was flashing on the dash. I saw the post about a recent change of the brake bulb which was my situation and changed it again. very simple procedure. Pack of 2 Sylvania 7440 lights for $10 and 10 minutes and all was fixed.
 

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‘10 Outback 2.5i limited
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I know this is a bit of an older thread, but I wanted to chime in as well, because changing out my newly installed LED brake lights with the original bulbs solved this same issue for me. Thank you to the previous posters for discovering this and making this an easy fix.
 
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