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1995 2.2 Auto Legacy Sedan
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Discussion Starter #1
I was just taking the last handful of my wifes stuff out of the Jeep Grand Wagoneer, now my dedicated tow vehicle, and my cell phone rings.
The Subaru has a transmission problem, up until now has been smooth as silk. No warning, she was pulling out of a clients driveway got about 25ft down the road and a loud clunk from the transmission area. She put it in reverse, another loud clunk and she backed the car down the road into the driveway.
My wife called me immediatley and I went to investigate. Sounds like something came loose or disconnected in the transmission. Left the car at the clients house and brought her home until I can have it towed home.
I will be getting much more familiar with the drive train over the next few weeks.
What are the best sources for removal replacement and other reading for the transmission work?
I will also be replacing struts and rebooting axles while I am at it as they need to be done any way.
When this is all said and done I hope the Jeep Gods do not punish me again for getting her out of the GW that she has loved and driven for three years. She loves the Subaru and has not spoken of the Jeep since she has been driving it. Now she is back in it until I can get it fixed. (shaking fist at Jeep gods).:mad::rolleyes::D
 

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03 H6 OBW & 06 WRX Sportwagon
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so, it was still driving after the clunk? could be lot's of things - why assume transmission?


I dunno - even suspension parts can clunk.

inspect the driveshaft u-joints and bearing and all the axles.
 

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Onyx, 2008 LL Bean 3.0R and 2017 Honda Civic Hatchback Sport Touring
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I agree with 1 Lucky Texan, more likely a suspension problem. Sounds like you already have some suspension problems. I'd also take a look at your anti-sway bars and their links. They are know to be a problem in that year. They get brittle and break fairly easily, making a clunking noise when changing direction from forward to reverse and reverse to forward.
 

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1995 2.2 Auto Legacy Sedan
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142 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
It is definatley transmission related. When put in Park it would still roll forward like it was in Neutral. Sounds like the torque converter/ gear or something is loose inside the housing. It was dark and I was doing a quick and dirty assesment. I will have it towed to the house tomorow evening when I have time and get a better look at it in two weeks when I can dive in. Until then she is back in the GW. What is the best book/ resource for the transmission work?
 

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03 H6 OBW & 06 WRX Sportwagon
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parking pawl broke off?

there was a recall - maybe ask a dealership about your VIN being covered (probably not though - worth a phone call);

November, 2002 2001-03 Legacy, Outback, Baja, Parking Pawl some 2001 Legacys; some 2003 Bajas, all 02 and some 2003 Legacy, Outback, Forester and Imprezas. 163,243 vehicles have a flaw that can cause them to slip out of parking gear. This automatic transmission defect probably affects about 816 vehicles, or less than 1 percent of the total, spokesman Mike Whelan said. No injuries or accidents have been reported as a result of the problem, he said
Some parts used in the parking-gear system didn't meet specifications. Setting the parking brake is recommended
 

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1995 2.2 Auto Legacy Sedan
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142 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
parking pawl broke off?

there was a recall - maybe ask a dealership about your VIN being covered (probably not though - worth a phone call);

November, 2002 2001-03 Legacy, Outback, Baja, Parking Pawl some 2001 Legacys; some 2003 Bajas, all 02 and some 2003 Legacy, Outback, Forester and Imprezas. 163,243 vehicles have a flaw that can cause them to slip out of parking gear. This automatic transmission defect probably affects about 816 vehicles, or less than 1 percent of the total, spokesman Mike Whelan said. No injuries or accidents have been reported as a result of the problem, he said
Some parts used in the parking-gear system didn't meet specifications. Setting the parking brake is recommended
Great catch and call. Sounds like something inside the case for sure.

Thank you and keep the suggestions rolling as I am learning alot about this vehicle.
 

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Look closely at the front axles. The same symptom (no parking pawl effect) can occur if either front axle CV joint has broken/separated, (a CV joint can break/separate without any visible signs if the boot around it is intact) or an axle stub has pulled out (doesn't require it to be completely out) of the front differential. There have been cases of both. And, interestingly, if either happens, the car can still move under it's own power because the AWD will enable the rear wheels to push/pull the car.
 

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1995 2.2 Auto Legacy Sedan
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142 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
All great info and Thank You Everyone.
Dealership said car was not under recall for parking pawl failure. This is actually a later, brand new transmission that was installed when the vehicle had about 30,000 miles on it and probably does have the known failure item. Dealership said they would just replace the transmission because they do not rebuild them. How do they fix the recall? Dealership refered me to Subaru of America. Now this rep. was a big help. They are not going to do anything for me but he gave me the STIS web address and looked up the parking pawl solution. He was hesitant to discuss it until I said I was willing to disassemble the whole vehicle if necessary. It can be repaired from underneath with out dropping the transmission if it is the problem. Good to know we have some support out there.

Thanks again for all the suggestions as I will be checking all of this when I dive into it.
 

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03 H6 OBW & 06 WRX Sportwagon
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Look closely at the front axles. The same symptom (no parking pawl effect) can occur if either front axle CV joint has broken/separated, (a CV joint can break/separate without any visible signs if the boot around it is intact) or an axle stub has pulled out (doesn't require it to be completely out) of the front differential. There have been cases of both. And, interestingly, if either happens, the car can still move under it's own power because the AWD will enable the rear wheels to push/pull the car.

so, using the FWD fuse, he might be able to prove/eliminate the front axles/diff from the equation?
 

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so, using the FWD fuse, he might be able to prove/eliminate the front axles/diff from the equation?
Yes, if it's a 4EAT (4-speed) transmission with the multi-plate transfer clutch and not the VTD center differential. By inserting the fuse to disable the clutch, the front drive will just spin freely because of the disconnected axle (if there is). I would add, though, that sometimes a pulled out axle stub will move back in just enough for the splines to grip -- it depends on the orientation of the suspension and the steering.

I note the engine is the H6, and that version might have had some variation in the transmission configuration.

That was a good idea that I missed. Thanks for pointing it out.

It's that cooperation and support that makes this forum what it is.
 

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2005 Outback 3.0R
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H6 Fuse?

Yes, if it's a 4EAT (4-speed) transmission with the multi-plate transfer clutch and not the VTD center differential. By inserting the fuse to disable the clutch, the front drive will just spin freely because of the disconnected axle (if there is). I would add, though, that sometimes a pulled out axle stub will move back in just enough for the splines to grip -- it depends on the orientation of the suspension and the steering.

I note the engine is the H6, and that version might have had some variation in the transmission configuration.

That was a good idea that I missed. Thanks for pointing it out.

It's that cooperation and support that makes this forum what it is.
Not sure the H6 allows the fuse to overide, seems that Turbo 4s and H6 could be excluded... in the owners manual (2005 H6)

Good luck

RidgeBack (Canada)
 

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I would have to assume that it would be the parking pawl aswell,

Does the car move / drive in any direction ? does the dash indicate you changing gears manualy ? Any codes in the system ?

I've seen a couple of transmissions come out of the reman box, and the park doesn't engage at all, Sounds like this is the case,

For your local dealership to tell you they don't rebuild them is kinda odd to me. SOA has a wide selection of parts available for the 4EAT.

i would have thought the AWD fuse would only work with key on any how, so it wouldn't affect the lack of being able to park it,
 

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1997 OBW
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Look closely at the front axles. The same symptom (no parking pawl effect) can occur if either front axle CV joint has broken/separated, (a CV joint can break/separate without any visible signs if the boot around it is intact) or an axle stub has pulled out (doesn't require it to be completely out) of the front differential. There have been cases of both. And, interestingly, if either happens, the car can still move under it's own power because the AWD will enable the rear wheels to push/pull the car.
What he said...:29:
Been there done that,assumed it was the tranny,bad axle was the main culprit...:rolleyes::eek:
Figured it out after I got ready to pull the engine and bought a used tranny.........:eek:
 

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2005 OBW 2.5L, 1989 Subaru Justy, RIP Blu
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Dealerships just R and R transmissions unless told otherwise. For an internal tranny repair they would get paid labor plus parts by subaru to correct an issue that is known. To properly diagnose an auto tranny you have to take it down and pull it apart in a case like yours. Sounds like the mainshaft snapped, just not too sure where.
 

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2012 Outback Ltd. 3.6R, Nav.
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One missing item is the number of miles on the vehicle....It's 13 years old ....so more than 150,000????.....parts do break/wear out with age and mileage under normal use......I bought a 2001 Outback VDC in 2001 and traded it in on a 2007 LL Bean Outback.....my 2001 VDC was flawless for 61,000 miles.
I would guess the issue is a U-joint or CVJoint issue rather than the transmission.
Keep us posted on the actual problem/resolution.
 

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1999 Outback Ltd. 2.5L
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What he said...:29:
Been there done that,assumed it was the tranny,bad axle was the main culprit...:rolleyes::eek:
Figured it out after I got ready to pull the engine and bought a used tranny.........:eek:
Is this problem only with his year Outback? I'm concerned about axles of late because the last time I was in the dealership, they said I had rust on my front driver axle and it needed to be replaced. I don't really trust anything this dealer says when they are trying to get me to do a $500-$600 repair because A) It's not Maestro in Tampa and B) It's new to being a Subaru dealer. (I was spoiled horribly by Perry Subaru in Virginia Beach. Richard always took very good care of our Subarus and knew I couldn't afford pricey repairs unless they were about to become catastrophic.)

Because my Outback is right on the cusp of a recall having to do with springs popping out and creating damage (I've been told my VIN number was not a part of it) I'm hesitant to let my son work on it should I start hearing noise. It sounds like the OP didn't hear any noise until right before it broke and my son said the boot on my axle would tear before anything went wrong and that rust would not cause the axle itself to fail because it's made of super duper steel or something like that.

Is there any way to tell something's going on with your axle without hearing that clunk when you turn the wheel my son said is supposed to be a pre-cursor to having to replace it?
 

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Not sure the H6 allows the fuse to overide, seems that Turbo 4s and H6 could be excluded... in the owners manual (2005 H6)

Good luck

RidgeBack (Canada)
The difference that you refer to is that the turbo and H6 in 2005+ have the five speed transmission with the VTD AWD center differential. In this case, using the fuse would not satisfy the test, because the differential remains active. In 2001, there was either the 4-speed transmission with the multi-plate clutch, in which case the fuse was active, or the 4-speed with VTD, in which case the fuse test would not work.
 

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I was wrong in post #7 above (and have added an EDIT there). In this regard, if only one front axle is defective in some way, but the front differential is otherwise intact, and if both front wheels are on the ground (and have good traction), then the parking pawl and "P" position of the gearshift, in fact, should still work to hold the car.
This paragraph is incorrect, but is being left for reference. See the next two posts.

The "fuse" test would still be applicable in the case of a broken or pulled axle.

A broken parking pawl mechanism that doesn't engage would allow the car to roll when in P. But this symptom could also happen if there's any "disconnect" between the reduction gear at the back of the transmission (which the pawl engages to prevent rotation) and the front differential. While unlikely, a broken front pinion shaft (between the reduction gear and the differential) could have the same effect. In this case, inserting the FWD fuse (FWD warning light comes on in the instrument panel) could again serve as a test provided the transmission has the MPT AWD system (post #10 above).
 
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