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Discussion Starter #1
hi folks,

i have a 2008 subaru outback where the display either starts blinking fast or goes blank every now and then. i haven't identified anything that precedes this, nor have i identified a way to reproduce this behavior. but it happens every so often. the ac continues to run when this happens, and the buttons don't do anything when the display goes blank. similarly, the stereo controls don't work when this happens, but the stereo continues to run when this happens.

i'd appreciate any direction on identifying and remedying these issues.

thanks so much!
-m
 

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Discussion Starter #3
thanks plain OM!

indeed, i have the 6 cd changer. has subaru addressed this since this is a common problem?
 

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My apologies. When I said it's a "common problem" that was perhaps misleading. The intent was meant to say that it has been the subject of previous posts here. I can't say how widespread it is (we tend to see the problems here and have little idea how many are out there that are trouble-free) or if Subaru has addressed it.

If you are able to dig into the radio and correct the faulty joints, a thread in the DIY section detailing the process (removal of the radio, what to look for, and if possible, photos), would be a nice addition to the knowledge base here and be a valuable addition for others with the same problem in future.
 

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Mine just started doing this - fortunately its covered under warranty, but Subi is totally out of the replacement part (apparently lots of people are experiencing this) and the only option is to wait 4ish months or have them ship it off for repair.
 

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So, mine just started having this issue. The display actually turned off completely but the radio/air were still going. After 6 years all of a sudden a bad solder joint?! What did Subaru do to fix yours hgpilot?
 

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I have sorted one out in the past, took the radio out and then split the cover off the front of the assembly, only screws! the front panel of the radio i had appart was only connected to the back of the unit with bent/curved "fingers". I added a little tension to these "fingers and some of that electrical grease(after cleaning up the contact areas) to the contact points and all was well. hope this is of assistance.
 

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I've had the same problem with my 2008 Outback. Got real bad, Subaru had no new radios or cores to rebuild. I bought one from a junkyard, been working fine for about a year, but starting to go bad too. I have contacted both Panasonic(the maker of the radio/hvac unit) and Subaru asking for a Panasonic authorized repair facility, both have been useless. I have called several independent repair facility's one does not work on Panasonic radios and I'm waiting for another to call back. I have my old radio as a core to rebuild but can't find anyone to rebuild it, nor can Subaru tell me where I can get it rebuilt. There seems to be a big problem with these radios in the 2005-2008 model years. Great car, but I'm disappointed about Subaru's response to this problem.
 

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Your best bet is to find an "old-time" radio/TV repair shop or a "retired" TV technician that still does some work. The problem is cracked solder joints on the main board and relaxing spring contacts for the front panel; these types of issues, especially soldered joint failures, were common in many brands of CRT TVs in the late '80s and '90's. They kept techs comfortably busy, which wasn't a bad thing! Someone who worked on TVs at that time would be quite familiar with the fundamental issue, and with finding and correcting bad contacts.
 

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I had an after market radio put in when I first got my 2008 outback (about 4-5 years ago). Everything worked fine until last year - the radio would randomly power off and then back on if I hit a bump or something like that. Then it didn't happen again until a couple weeks ago. I tried starting my car one morning and all I heard is a relay in the glove compartment clicking repeatedly. Car wouldn't start. I gave up and came back a few hours later to check the battery, but before I did I flipped the parking lights switch on the steering column and for some reason (with the key in the ignition) it became responsive again and I could start the car. Over the next couple weeks the radio would again lose power if going over bumps and sometimes when I turned the car off, there would be no power (doors, ignition, interior... nothing), but if I flipped the parking lights switch or pressed the hazards button it would come back on... strange. Yesterday same thing happened but it wouldn't come back on - well a couple hours later after the tow truck arrived it finally did start again.

I dropped it off at the dealership to check it out and they stated that since it's an after market radio it might be causing the issue and I should probably replace the radio with the stock one. However, it seems like there's a short somewhere or as mentioned earlier, bad soldering? Would putting stock radio back in alleviate that issue? Any advice?

Thanks
 

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Blinking lights on dash involving stereo and AC

Like many others on this topic chain, I have the same problem on my 2007. It's been 2+ years since last post.

Might anyone have suggestions to get this repaired? Mine is actually turning radio on and off and randomly adjusting the volume and my navigation panel flickers on and off. Temp definitely affects it as well. "It" seems to appreciate the cooler temp.

Thanks in advance for any comments.

Pam
 

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I encountered the same issue a few months ago. Thought it was a wiring issue being electrical et. all, and since the AC worked, it might "come back to life." It did and went out again over the next few days.

I solved it by pushing on the middle right of the unit, below the big knob. I pushed on the unit thinking maybe it "bumped" something loose and pushing it back into the housing would solve the issue. Thus far, I've been OK.

I took nothing apart so give it a try.
 

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So far, many have reported fixing the issue by:

1. Cleaning any oxidation where the pins from the front plate contact the unit.
2. Repairing bad soldiers found on the radio.

Item one seems to be the most common resolution.
 

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I have pushed on the unit in various locations to change the volume on radio and temperature but it is a temporary as in seconds.

THS258 I will try your number #1... stupid Q but how do I take front plate off??
 

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First use these directions to remove the stereo:

After the head unit is removed look on the edge of the face plate for mounting screws. I haven't seen one in a while, but there may be a few screws on the back of the face plate holding it to the bracket too. So, bring it in where you have decent light and unscrew everything you can see until it just falls off. Oh, and there may be a clip type connector here and there as well. Glad I could be of "help." It should look pretty obvious once you get it out. Take your time and let us know how it goes.
 

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Omgosh! SO helpful David. Thank you so much for taking time to post video.

Now, I won't be able to do until after first of year after medical procedure completed.

I will definitely get back to the group on my progress.
 

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Saved a bunch of money reading this thread. Tip: have a magnetized, long shank Phillips screwdriver.
Video was exceedingly helpful.
Thank you! 👍👍👍
2007 Outback
 
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