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Registered
2001 Outback Wagon, manual, 2.5
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41 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
2001 Outback Wagon, H4, 5 speed manual.

Something started yesterday on the way home. Whenever I apply throttle I hear and feel a solid thud or clunk sound from around the middle of the car. This happens during gear changes, which is where I first noticed it, and if I'm coasting in gear off of the throttle and then blip the throttle a little.

Also, when coasting in gear now when the RPMs get to about 2k and below there's a vibration felt. The vibration is lessened if I push in the clutch.

A few months ago I changed the viscous coupler and the car also has a new transmission mount. When in neutral or when the clutch is pressed there's no thud even with throttle blips.

Right after the viscous coupler replacement I noticed a very slight vibration when decelerating but it was nothing like this.

It seems like this is transmission output or back. Is this a common thing? What should I check first? Maybe the middle driveshaft bearing?
 

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Registered
2001 Outback Wagon, manual, 2.5
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41 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
I found the problem.

This is how I found the rear differential bushings.



Back in January I used Whiteline Diff bushing inserts to get rid of the clunking caused by the worn out diff bushings. I used new OEM studs and nuts to install them.

They studs backed out. One fell out entirely with the insert and the other was hanging in there about to fall out with the torn out section of the original bushing. The clunking was from the rear diff just floating on the axles and driveshaft.

I reinstalled the one stud and bushing that's left on the right bushing. That gets rid of most of the clunking and vibrating for now. But I need to do something soon.

What are my best options here? I can get new bushing inserts, new studs and nuts, and bigger washers to reinstall them with some medium strength thread locker. Dropping the rear subframe to entirely install new bushings is a pain in the ass with this model.

That's two options. What are some others?

Thanks.
 

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Premium Member
2001 Outback 2.5/Manual
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88 Posts
I found this problem on mine last year, I totally went a cheap easy way. I took the nuts off and found two or three washers each one bigger than the other and stacked them all and put the nut back, tightened it up. Not saying by any means this is a correct fix just worked for me. In effect what i did is pull the diff back just a tiny bit jamming it onto the carrier, so it kinda takes the vibration dampening out of it but i barely noticed a difference and the washers are there right where i put them. Now I thought to myself they may slide apart some when reversing but they haven't
 

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'01 Base OBW w/5MT & AWP, Wintergreen
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105 Posts
What are my best options here? I can get new bushing inserts, new studs and nuts, and bigger washers to reinstall them with some medium strength thread locker. Dropping the rear subframe to entirely install new bushings is a pain in the ass with this model.

That's two options. What are some others?

Thanks.
You can install new bushings without removing the rear subframe. It's also a PITA, but you asked for additional options. :|

How long ago did you replace the original bushings? I bushing bores in the subframe are not wallowed out or out of round, I don't think it would be to difficult to replace the with the subframe on the car. If they are out of round, you need a new subframe anyway, so that rules out that option.
 

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Master Caster
2005 XT, Mildly Modified...2006 XT Limited, Highly Modifed
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16,151 Posts
You can certainly cut the old ones out with the subframe in the car. Detail hack saw. It will take a little bit...of patience. If there are full poly bushing available, then they go in easy. I am not sure. I have seen both the WL and I have the same concept from AVO on the insert level.

What you really need to do is every month or so, re-check any work. Something like this WL insert kit needs to be check a few miles after installation. Then it needs to be checked at like 100 miles in. Then every month or 2. Just like any other vehicle modification. Torque settings are guidelines and I doubt most of us a proper torque wrench. Most are using a click-style. A real calibrated needle torque wrench can't be bought for $50. They are expensive for a reason.

Locktite will help in just about any situation. However, there is no substitute for checking on modifications, make it part of your maintenance routine. 5 min on a set of ramps with and adjustable wrench is often all I need to go around my dirty-dozen (or 2)
 

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Master Caster
2005 XT, Mildly Modified...2006 XT Limited, Highly Modifed
Joined
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16,151 Posts
I found this problem on mine last year, I totally went a cheap easy way. I took the nuts off and found two or three washers each one bigger than the other and stacked them all and put the nut back, tightened it up. Not saying by any means this is a correct fix just worked for me. In effect what i did is pull the diff back just a tiny bit jamming it onto the carrier, so it kinda takes the vibration dampening out of it but i barely noticed a difference and the washers are there right where i put them. Now I thought to myself they may slide apart some when reversing but they haven't
Well, you have squashed the open bushing and are actually forcing it to tear more IMPO. But I could be wrong. You won't know until you go back in and see.Along with my previous post, I recommend doing just that. I *******-hacked an entire STI top-feed fuel rail for Frank. It must have had 50 tiny worm clamps. When I took it out 4 months later...some things were not what I expected.

You definitely need to follow up on ******* mods. (we all do)
 

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Premium Member
2001 Outback 2.5/Manual
Joined
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88 Posts
Well, you have squashed the open bushing and are actually forcing it to tear more IMPO. But I could be wrong. You won't know until you go back in and see.Along with my previous post, I recommend doing just that. I *******-hacked an entire STI top-feed fuel rail for Frank. It must have had 50 tiny worm clamps. When I took it out 4 months later...some things were not what I expected.

You definitely need to follow up on ******* mods. (we all do)
You are right, I should fix it right, at that time i had just finished alot of work on the car and lazied out on this. And I was concerned about making the problem worse, I will keep an eye on it.
 

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Premium Member
03 H6 OBW & 06 WRX Sportwagon
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17,835 Posts
there's the WindoWeld stuff from 3M. I think there's even a youtube video of it being used and the original poster reports it's still holding.
 

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Registered
2001 Outback Wagon, manual, 2.5
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41 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
What you really need to do is every month or so, re-check any work. Something like this WL insert kit needs to be check a few miles after installation. Then it needs to be checked at like 100 miles in. Then every month or 2. Just like any other vehicle modification. Torque settings are guidelines and I doubt most of us a proper torque wrench. Most are using a click-style. A real calibrated needle torque wrench can't be bought for $50. They are expensive for a reason.
Yeah. I didn't check on them afterwards. That's just negligence on my part. I'll probably try the bushing inserts again since they were cheap, easy to use, and effective. If those end up not working out long term then I'll just cut out the OEM bushing in full and install new solid type ones.

This time I'll just make sure to check them periodically. I'll torque them down (with my $600 Proto torque wrench =P) and keep an eye on them. I have new bushing inserts and new OEM studs and nuts ordered.
 

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Master Caster
2005 XT, Mildly Modified...2006 XT Limited, Highly Modifed
Joined
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16,151 Posts
You are right, I should fix it right, at that time i had just finished alot of work on the car and lazied out on this. And I was concerned about making the problem worse, I will keep an eye on it.
It's easy to gloat from the peanut gallery. I have really rigged somethings in the past. Either because of $, lack of patience...or I thought I had a good idea.

I have also had many things come apart on me.

YI'll torque them down (with my $600 Proto torque wrench =P)
That's why the only things I ever bother to torque are lug buts and engine/head assembly. I have to borrow a good torque wrench for engines.

I have a $20 Harbor Freight click-torque wrench myself, suitable for lug nuts. I just strong-arm everything else.
 
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