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George H.
George H., Subaru Certified Technician
Category: Subaru
Satisfied Customers: 18667
Experience:  ASE Master Tech 15 + Years
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Having trouble starting a subaru 2001 outback. The battery

Customer Question

Having trouble starting a subaru 2001 outback. The battery is brand new, the starter/solenoid is brand new. Wondering about the starter relay, and the clutch switch.
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Subaru
Expert:  George H. replied 1 year ago.

Hello I will help you with your question,

The problem is that the starter will not energize and turn the engine when you turn the key?

Do the lights come on?

Do you have a voltmeter or 12 volts testlight in case the circuit needs to be checked?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
lights come on. Yes I have a volt-meter
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Actually right light comes on. Left light does not. Assume that's a bulb?
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Expert:  George H. replied 1 year ago.
I do think that may be a bulb or fuse, check for power to the lamp socket. For the starting try this
Disconnect the negative cable, turn the key to the run position
Reconnect the battery cable and turn the key off and then start the engine. If it still does not crank then check at the small wire on the starter solenoid on top of the engine to see if you have 12 volts when you tun the key to the start position.
Let me know if that works
Thank you
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Thanks. I'll try that.
Expert:  George H. replied 1 year ago.

Great, I will be here so let me know how it works

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Neither. I heard the reset when I did the negative terminal reconnect. But no cranking. And no voltage to the small wire.
Customer: replied 1 year ago.
What is that wire called by the way?
Expert:  George H. replied 1 year ago.

Sorry I was knocked offline, we have storms here today.

If you get no voltage on the small wire I have to ask if you have an aftermarket alarm rather than just the Subaru factory anti theft?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
No, I think it's the regular Subaru alarm. The insurance company did install some sort of metering device however. The unit is sitting near the emergency brake and is wired into the electronics. Should I be concerned about the clutch switch and the starter relay?
Expert:  George H. replied 1 year ago.

The insurance reader probably won't interfere but you should pull it until we get this started. Most of them just plug in.

Yes, we need to check at the clutch switch. Pull the connector off the switch and see if putting a paperclip in the connection will allow it to crank, if it does the switch is failed.

Let me know if you have power then and I will track down the interrupt and start relays.

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
It's the clutch switch. I jumped it and it starts right up. Now, how do you get that darn thing out? Just pull straight back? Or is there a clip? I have big hands so it it's tight. Thanks
Expert:  George H. replied 1 year ago.

Great, wish they all were that easy.

Sure the switch is adjusted properly so it closes when the pedal is on the floor? you can use your meter across the terminals to see if the resistance reading goes to 0 with the plunger on the switch pushed.

Expert:  George H. replied 1 year ago.

All it says is "remove switch" and I would have to see it to know how this one comes out. Can you get it or take a picture?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Should I just replace the switch? I can't seem to get it out? Is there a tab I'm missing?
Expert:  George H. replied 1 year ago.

Can you post a picture? I don't remember every one and it is 15 years old.

From a picture of the new one I think you have a nut on a threaded shaft?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
It is a nut on a threaded shaft....I just can't seem to get a wrench back there? Tips?
Expert:  George H. replied 1 year ago.

You only have one nut? I have a whole box full of tools so I would need to see it to know what I need to pull out. Can you post a picture?