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2000 Subaru Outback Limited Sedan, 2.5L
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162 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
2000 Outback Limited Sedan, 177k miles. Subaru replaced left ball joint, Les Schwab replaced right hub & bearing and also performed four wheel alignment. Alignment was brought into specs except right rear (values were .17 with a limit of .10). Ride has improved immensely. Struts replaced about 77k ago.
Despite what was done, there's still issues. Steering wheel vibes about 55 MPH. Steering and front end still feels sloppy. If the road is worn with tire grooves or is rough, the road dictates where the tires go; if you're not aware of how the car acts, you feel like the steering wheel is being jerked left or right. A bit unsettling, especially at high speeds.
The ride is rough; I seem to feel every bump in the road. Struts again???? Any other feedback would be appreciated before I pull the trigger and replace struts again. Thanks!
 

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2018 Dark Blue Outback 3.6R Touring arrived 8/31/2017
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343 Posts
Consider bushings may be worn out: I'm not sure what it'd cost to replace them, or if you can do those yourself.

For tire issues, it could be as mundane as a dinged rim or tires being out of balance: perhaps you have a nail or screw (or more than one!) embedded in tires.
 
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(formerly) 03 H6 OBW , (presently) 06 WRX Sportwagon & 2021 Honda CR-V
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18,329 Posts
check air pressure in tires - if they are more than 2-3 pounds above the pressure listed on the door card or in the owner's manual, lower the pressure. High tire pressure will be bumpy/noisy on rough roads.

tie rods may be worn, that can allow steering float/vibration - worn steering rack bushing may also be in the mix. You might try moving tires front to back in case they are causing the vibration. Even a sticking/draggoing brake caliper or lugnut problems could cause the vibration.

do you have any groaning/whining noise when turning the steering wheel? getting air in the power steering system is a common problem - usually easily fixed with a new o-ring or small hose.

what brand struts were put on KYB are not likely worn out at 77K but not impossible, other brands could very well be worn-out.

where are you located? you may be better served by a subaru-friendly independent mechanic than a dealer.
 

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2000 Subaru Outback Limited Sedan, 2.5L
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162 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Replaced both front tires. The car rides much better. Still some hint of slop, but definitely an improvement. I'm considering this issue closed!
 

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Meh.
I has wagons.
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12,343 Posts
Replaced both front tires. The car rides much better. Still some hint of slop, but definitely an improvement. I'm considering this issue closed!
Replacing only 2 tires on a Subaru is a terrible idea and you should fix that fast.
 
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2000 Subaru Outback Limited Sedan, 2.5L
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162 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks again AWDFTW. The new front tires have only 1/32" more tread than the "almost new" rear tires, which is why I wasn't overly concerned. The worn tires I replaced on the front were worn well below the rear tires, thanks to a daughter who doesn't understand the concept of rotating tires. Surely if the car survived driving hundreds, maybe thousands, of miles having worn tires on the front and almost new tires on the back, the 1/32" difference now shouldn't hurt anything. At least that's what I'm hoping!
 

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Meh.
I has wagons.
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12,343 Posts
Gotcha.

1/32 is within Subaru's specs.

That said, she probably did some extra wear and tear on the car by doing that. Hopefully not a problem down the road.
 

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2000 Subaru Outback Limited Sedan, 2.5L
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162 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
At this point I'll be running the car until it dies. I'll keep up with the low cost tinkering fixes, but high dollar items like transmissions and differentials will put the car in the scrap yard.
 

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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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I believe the tire spec is within 1/4" in circumference for all four tires. Not mathematically competent to know how 1/32nd in tread depth relates to circumference
 

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2000 Subaru Outback Limited Sedan, 2.5L
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162 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I'm a bit skeptical regarding the argument about tire specs anyway. The OEM knows best, but if tire difference on an AWD is as critical as we're being led to believe, than there should be more Subaru's in the scrap yard with severe drive train issues and less Subaru's on the road chugging along day-after-day. I've seen entirely too many Subs on the road which have obviously been neglected in so many ways, and I'm sure the folks driving these beaters have absolutely no concern regarding tire specs! I surely wouldn't mix tire sizes on the same vehicle, but I'm not fully buying into the 1/4" circumference difference. I suspect other issues would have the car heading to the scrap yard long before any issues created by tires out of tolerance. Time will tell on my own Suby, because I know the car was operated for many miles with two very worn tires on the front and two, nearly new tires on the back.
 
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