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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi there all. I just purchased a 2014 Outback with 31K miles on the odometer. So far, the miles per gallon fuel consumption has been pretty bad. I just drove about 32 miles and it went through almost a 1/4 tank of gas. City driving and not fast either. Is this normal? I really like the car, first experience with a Suby, but the gas consumption has not made me a fan. Any suggestions?

I did not get an extended warranty through the dealer when I purchased the wagon, so I figure I am on the hook for this issue. :frown2:
 

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2017 OutBack Premier, 2019 Forester Ltd, 2016 370z Rdstr
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gb_socal,

I've owned 5 OBW's, one of each generation since 1998, all H4's, and they've all given me great mileage. Understand that I don't drive a car hard, and I have a 50/50 mix of highway and city driving. I can regularly pull 34 mpg from my present 2017 (that's 28 mpg US, we use Imperial gallons here in Canada) even though its rated at 41 mpg's by the Canadian Government. On the highway at the speed limit (100 kmph or 60 mph) I can get close to that 41 mpg rating on a long trip across the Province of almost 7 hours.

So your's is way off. If you have the H6 ... you won't get great mileage regardless of what you do. The H4 is very good, however.

What I've found in many years of car ownership is that various fuel gauges are calibrated and operate much differently from car to car. I've had fuel gauges that never moved from FULL for nearly 100 miles, and then they started going down. Others dropped like a stone until the half way mark, and then took forever to get to the empty mark. My point being, go through a couple of entire fuel tank fulls until you panic and delve into the issue. That will tell you for certain if you have an issue.

At 35 000 miles you may need to have the throttle body cleaned, the air filter changed, spark plugs replaced, and the injectors cleaned with a fuel additive, or something else along those lines.

I suggest checking your mileage with paper and pencil over two fuel ups, see where you actually are, and if necessary, go to a good independent mechanic and have the car checked out. Good Luck!
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks so much for the advice. I have the CVT model, by the way. I don't believe I am using a lead foot, but I am in Southern CA, so there are a lot of hills, traffic, and starting and stopping happening. My last car was a hybrid, so this gas use with the OB has been pretty crazy.

Like I said, I really do love the car. She is a solid and beautiful beast. I will run through a couple of tanks and crunch the numbers the old school way to figure out the mpg before I freak out altogether...
 

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SoCal use can run from 21mpg heavy foot no attempt to get good mileage to light foot gradual throttle changes lots of coasting in heavy traffic 34mpg. All tank averages. Is the OB like a plugin hybrid? No my wife’s Plugin Fusion does 82mpg averages daily. But my Sequoia is sweating it to bet 15mpg tank averages in SoCal. But 15mpg is way better than the 12mpg my Land Cruiser got.

Takes some time to get use to the OB. Plus prior driving habits ie drivers may have been throttle jockeys so it may take 500-1000 miles before both you and the car start to show true tank averages with your driving style.
 

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Check tire pressure first as would be easiest fix, also pull the air filter and see if it needs changing............also could be 02 sensor, plugs/wires, direct injection (not sure if 2014 had it though)....gl
 

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If you really did use almost 1/4 tank over 32 miles, that is close to 8mpg. That is definitely not normal.

You seem pleased with the car so there does not appear to be any drivability problems: Sluggish acceleration, no power, smell of burning brakes, smell of raw fuel.

Do you have a teenager that might be "borrowing" fuel from your tank?
 

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Unless something is seriously broken (like a big leak in the fuel line or hole in the tank) I would make sure that you are not fooled by the gauge. I honestly don't understand why we can't produce accurate fuel gauges these days. As stated earlier - they either drop off right away or towards the end.
I'm driving a '99 Legacy and the needle only starts to move after about 80 miles.

What I did over time:
- Fueled up the car (don't top off!) and reset your trip odometer
- Drove until the tank showed about 1/4 empty and fueled up again.
- Got pen and pencil (or phone calculator;) and did the math (miles driven/gallons fueled)
- repeated with tank 1/2 and 3/4 empty.
- repeated when fuel warning light came on.

This at least gives you a feel how much gas you have left.

Your gas usage is clearly not normal. So after you checked it by doing the math (even once) and it turns out that your mileage is indeed that bad - I'd go and see a repair shop to have them check.
 

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'15 Outback 2.5i Premium
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32 miles and eyeing the gas gauge isn't much to go on.

Reserve judgment until you've used at least a full tank of gas. At this rate a full tank would take you 128 miles. If it really is that poor something is wrong, bu you can't say for sure if you really used more than 4 gallons to go 32 miles or not, yet.
 
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