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tamaz, Subaru master technician
Category: Subaru
Satisfied Customers: 1253
Experience:  Subaru certified,ASE Master technician,25 years experience
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I have a '10 Outback that has an intermittent "ticking"

Customer Question

I have a '10 Outback that has an intermittent "ticking" sound behind the speedometer/tachometer. The only detectable pattern is: (1) it started making this noise about 3 months ago after no apparent maintenance, hit to the car, etc.; (2) the noise is there 90% of the time; (3), it doesn't appear to be tied to any operations of the car (e.g. tachometer, a/c, fan, wipers, etc.); (4) it doesn't always make the noise immediately (i.e. when starting the car, but only after about the running and moving of the car within 5-10 minutes). The car is going into the shop for 2 recalls but none (I'm told by Subaru) will make a difference in this sound. Any ideas? Steve
JA: Where exactly do you think the noise is coming from? And how long has this been going on?
Customer: as best we can tell it's right behind the speedometer section of the dash, it's been going on for about 3+ months
JA: Are you fixing your Outback yourself? What have you tried so far?
Customer: no, only with mechanics. haven't tried anything other than the process of elimination as its coming from an area i'm not comfortable in trying to access. process of elimination is as previously stated i.e. turning on/off wipers, signal indicators, a/c fan, heater, etc.
JA: Anything else you want the mechanic to know before I connect you?
Customer: i don't think so other than the obvious question is what is the charge when using the "mechanic" you refer to?
JA: You just pay a $5 deposit now and the rest only when you get a reply from the Subaru Mechanic. All of this is 100% satisfaction guaranteed, so you can get a refund if you're not happy for any reason.
Customer: ok
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Subaru
Expert:  tamaz replied 10 months ago.

Hi,of course noises are tough over the internet but I have a few possibilities that I have come across.I have seen numerous times noises that are coming from the sun glass holder,whether its the glasses themselves or the door just rattling on the latch, this noise appears to be coming from the dash and customers are shocked when we tell them this,so remove anything kept in the holder and drive with the door down to see if a difference is made,next I've had poor electrical connections under the dash sound like a ticking,I suggest removing the lower knee bolster panel and driving to see if the noise becomes louder this panel does insulate quite well.Lastly the dash meter is held in by a few screws I know you are not comfortable with removing but there is a possibility the noise is coming from the glass portion that covers speedometer I've seen this before,like I was saying noises are tough but hopefully I've given you some ideas ,thanks for your time.