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George H.
George H., Subaru Certified Technician
Category: Subaru
Satisfied Customers: 18817
Experience:  ASE Master Tech 15 + Years
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96 subaru legacy outback: ignition switch..firing..both trans codes

Customer Question

i have a 96 subaru legacy outback im aving a wierd problem when i turn on the ignition switch every sensor and rad fans fuel pump click on an off the computer is getting power it has ground the left bank has spark but is not firing it has code po1101 and po500 both trans codes no missfire codes the trans computer feels warm to the touch ive checked every thing im stumped what is going on
Submitted: 6 years ago.
Category: Subaru
Expert:  George H. replied 6 years ago.

Hello I will help you with your question,


Has someone connected the D-Check connectors under the dash near the steering column?


The black and the green connectors should be hanging free and not connected.


Let em know so I can help you


Thank you



George H. and 3 other Subaru Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 6 years ago.
i see a black 2 prong connector hanging loose if that is the right one you are talking about
Expert:  George H. replied 6 years ago.

Is the green connector disconnected as well?



Customer: replied 6 years ago.

i unplugged the green connector and engine light quit flashing

Expert:  George H. replied 6 years ago.

Did the other components stop cycling?



Customer: replied 6 years ago.
yes 2 and 4 cly still not firing
Expert:  George H. replied 6 years ago.

OK, that took it out of D-Check mode, leave the connectors disconnected. You need to confirm cam timing and see that the signals from the cam and crank sensors are strong and clean.


Let me know how I can help you



Thank you



Customer: replied 6 years ago.
it has a po204 code now the ignition timing is 30 degrees idleing and the belt timing marks are correct how many volts should the cam and crank sensor be putting out
Expert:  George H. replied 6 years ago.

You should see a clean signal of at least 1 1/2 volts at idle on the oscilloscope for both the cam and crank sensors.


If you have a P0204 that is an injector code, is the injector plugged in? Have you swapped the injector position to see if it moves with the injector or measured the resistance of the injectors so you can compare the ones that are not setting codes with the one that is?


This is an electrical code not a lack of fuel.


How do you know that 2 and 4 are not firing?



Customer: replied 6 years ago.
it is getting spark if you unplug the injector while it is running no difference and the exhaust pipes on drivers side dont get hot the resistane on all 4 injectors are between 15 and 20 ohms i have ohm checked the coil and the ignitor is sending signial
Expert:  George H. replied 6 years ago.

If you unplugged the injector while running that could be why you have a P0204!


So it IS firing on 2 and 4 but you don't think you have fuel?


All I can tell you is that when you have one bank not firing it usually is that the cam timing is off by a tooth or more.


How did you check the cam timing and what marks did you use?



Customer: replied 6 years ago.
there was 2 marks on middle of the gear i lined those up and the mark on the top of the gear to the mark on timing cover
Expert:  George H. replied 6 years ago.

The double marks align with the double marks on the lower cam gear and the single marks align with the single marks on the timing cover while the balancer is on the T mark?


If this is the case the cams are in time and I have no further help to offer. You have a troubleshooting problem that you need to verify signal from cam and crank to the computer, from the computer the firing signal to the coil and from the coil to the plugs, against the cam and crank signals display the injector signals and be sure you have compression.


With all the above factors in place the engine will run on all cylinders, find what is missing and you know why it is missing. Have you checked compression?



Customer: replied 6 years ago.
yes it has compression i did pull a plug out on num 2 and num 1 cly 1 is fuel fouled and 2 cyl is like it come out the box and the plug is getting spark nso what you are telling me 2 do is i need to check cam and crank sensor signial and make sure the cam and crank sensor is good
Expert:  George H. replied 6 years ago.

Yes I would start with the cam and crank signals then swap the injectors and see if you still get the fuel fouling on #1 or see if it moves to #2.


You either have a fueling issue from the sensors or the injector is clogged/leaking.


Its time to play swaptronics or you need an ignition scope with a pinpoint scope to see the signals together to be sure they are present and in time with each other.


Let me know how I can help





Customer: replied 6 years ago.
there is one more thing i wana ask i had a vavle job done on the heads is vavle clearence adjustable im wondering if vavle is too tight i just started thinking about that
Expert:  George H. replied 6 years ago.

That is why I asked about compression, if the valves are hanging open it will show as low compression. You may need to clean or replace the plugs if they are fouled.


The lash adjusters on this engine (2.5 DOHC) are hydraulic so they should maintain adjustment but I do see receding valve seats (you had a valve job=should not be an issue) but there could be carbon holding the valve open. Again it should show in the compression.


Let me know what further questions you have


Thank you