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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 2005 Subaru Outback LL Bean Edition which is showing two ODB codes. The codes indicate a faulty neutral safety switch. I have purchased a replacement switch and looked at diagrams and photos of the switch location. The car is an all wheel drive with an automatic transmission. The information I found indicates that the switch is located on the right side of the transmission near the front next to the shift cable. I see the shift cable but I do not see the switch. The switch I purchased is the size of my palm. Is there another location the switch my be found for this model car?
 

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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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Does it look like this (4EAT Inhibitor Switch)

 

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Your 05 LLB with the 6-cylinder engine would have the 5-speed automatic transmission. It has no switches on the side of the transmission.

The 4-speed automatic has it's "inhibitor switch" on the right side, and it's linked to the gear shift lever by a cable. Given the size of the new switch, I suspect it's the inhibitor switch for the 4-speed.

What were the codes that indicated a faulty neutral safety switch?

edit: (The photo above looks like the inhibitor switch.)
 

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DTC P0817 STARTER DISABLE CIRCUIT
DTC DETECTING CONDITION:
Open or short in P/N signal output circuit
TROUBLE SYMPTOM:
• Engine can be started on other than “P” or “N” range
• Engine can not be started on “P” or “N” range

DTC P0700 TRANSMISSION CONTROL SYSTEM (MIL REQUEST)

The P0700 is not a fault; it's just a code indicating that the transmission control module on-board-diagnostics has signaled the engine control module to turn on the check engine warning light.

The P0817 is the actual fault code.

What symptoms are you experiencing, if any?

I could find the P0817 only in relation to the 5-speed automatic. (However, would still appreciate your confirmation that your 2005 LL Bean has the 6-cylinder engine and 5-speed auto.) As noted earlier, the inhibitor switch is not applicable to the 5-speed automatic, and that's probably why you are unable to find its location on the side of the transmission.

Here's two threads related to the same code:

http://www.subaruoutback.org/forums/65-parts-accessories-performance/64906-er-hc-error.html

http://www.subaruoutback.org/forums/104-gen-4-2010-2014/23658-computer-issues.html

Also see attached diagnostics.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Yes, you are correct. It has a six cylinder engine and the 5 speed transmission. Do you know where the switch is located on this model?
 

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Do you know where the switch is located on this model?
Is the switch the same for both transmissions?
The function of the 4AT (4-speed) inhibitor switch that you have is done by a different switch in the 5AT (5-speed); that switch is part of the valve body inside the transmission. The valve body is generally not serviceable (other than by full replacement).

Nevertheless, if the code is P0817, then it is not related to that switch in any event. (See the diagnostic page attachment in post #6 above.)

I don't know where you found information suggesting that the inhibitor switch (part used in the 4AT) is the problem and would appreciate if you could provide links. This is not to be argumentative; the intent is to see the source(s), and if what is indicated is relevant. There's always something new to learn.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Ok, just wanted to make sure there wasn't a switch that needed to be replaced. I will return the switch to the store. The symptoms are: I have to make 2 attempts to crank the car in park. Then later on, the code light started coming on, and the engine started running rough. The light then started to blink, so I parked the car and have not driven it. The mechanic wanted over 400 dollars to replace the switch, so I decided to replace the switch myself. Thanks for the information. I will see what the mechanic has to say about fixing the problem on this type of transmission.
 

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The 4AT and 5AT are very different both in the way they are controlled and the internal mechanics (4 versus 5 speed). It's not unusual for them to be confused, or thought to be more similar than they are.

The hard starting is a possible symptom of the P0817 according to the diagnostic sheet. But which light was blinking? If the CEL, that often indicates misfiring in the engine. There could be two problems, one causing poor starting and misfiring, and the other triggering the P0817 and P0700.

Might want to see if there are any additional codes.
 

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I have similar problems, occasionally my car 05 H6 Outback would throw p0817 and 0700 codes that go off after sometime. No other concerns, the AT works fine. I've noticed that it happens more often during winter time. My mechanic had no idea what might be the problem...

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My 2005 has the same codes as well as a PO705 which is the transmission range sensor circuit. It has the CEL on steady, the cruise slow blink and sport fast blink. It has shifted into neutral for a second or two at times. It is the 5AT. I am hoping I won't need to replace the valve body.
 

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Any updates on this?
I also have a 2005 L.L. Bean Outback.
3.0L H6 w/ 5EAT
Er HC, p1718 and P0817.
I was able to read a live data on the transmission and the only sensor that wasnt reading what gear i was in is the PN switch. It recognized where i had the shift lever. But the PN switch never turned 'on' in the appropriate gear. I am assuming this is the sensor i need to tell the starter circuit that its ok to activate? Is the PN switch part of the formentioned internal valve body, or is this a seperate plug on the transmission somewhere?

20201204_150452.jpg
 
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