As a certified auto mechanic with over 20 years of hands on experience, I’ve helped plenty of people struggling when their Subaru Outback Sport Won’t Start. And I’ll be straight with you, not being able to start your car when you need to drive straight up sucks.
But don’t worry, you’ve come to the right place, no need to keep googling searches like “reason a Subaru won’t start“, I got you covered. My name’s Robby, a certified auto mechanic with over two decades of experience, and in this guide, I’ll explain the most common explanations for why your Outback Sport refuses to start. I’ll detail all the typical suspects so you can diagnose what’s causing issues, plus what to do to fix each specific problem. Drawing on my 20 years of training and on the job experience, I’ll offer usable diagnostic pointers to get your Subaru Outback Sport starting again ASAP!
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Why Won’t My a Subaru Start?
Before we dive into the laundry list of possible issues and solutions, it’s key to first gain an understanding of the core problem. When you climb into your Subaru Outback Sport and realize “it won’t start!”, there could be several components causing the headaches. Maybe the engine isn’t cranking at all, or maybe it’s cranking but not firing. Or you might hear clicking when you try to start it, but ultimately nothing happens. Each scenario can signal various problems under the hood.
Common Reasons Why Your Subaru Outback Sport Won’t Start
There are numerous contributing factors why your Outback Sport won’t start up. Typical causes include a dead or weak battery, defective alternator, starter motor complications, fuel system snags, plus electrical or wiring issues. Every one of these concerns can present differently, needing specific methods of troubleshooting and fixing to get you driving again pronto. All of which, we’ll delve into.
Symptoms of a Subaru Outback Sport That Won’t Start
Recognizing these symptoms will help uncover the core cause. Take for example, when you turn the key or press the start button and you hear it clicking but no ignition, it often indicates a fuel or ignition issue.
Analysis of The Reasons Why Your Subaru Outback Sport Won’t Start
The first step in remedying the no-start headache is pinpointing the exact source of the trouble. So let’s take a closer look at the most frequent explanations for the Outback Sport not starting when you turn the key.
Battery Issues in a Subaru Outback Sport
In the vast majority of situations, the most common reason a Subaru Outback Sport won’t start comes down to battery troubles. Specifically, a weak or dead battery prevents the engine from cranking. The car’s battery delivers the necessary electrical juice to ignite the engine and energize all your vehicle’s electrical components. Signals of a failing battery include sluggish or strained cranking, dim headlights, or a warning light aglow on the dash. A battery charger can recharge a drained battery if you don’t have the help of another vehicle to jump start it, but do have an electrical socket nearby like at home. And a portable jump starter lets you charge p the battery without another vehicle, and by the roadside without the need for an electrical socket, so you are never stuck.
Alternator Problems in a Subaru Outback Sport
The Alternator keeps the battery charged by using engine power while driving. A malfunctioning alternator can easily stop your Subaru Outback Sport from starting since it cannot recharge the battery, draining it completely so that one day you hop in your wheels and it just can’t start. Symptoms of a faulty alternator may include a lit up battery or alternator caution light on your dash, dull headlights while idling, or a whirring noise from the engine while running.
Starter Motor Failures in a Subaru Outback Sport
The starter motor is key to turning the engine when you go to start up your Subaru. In the event of starter problems, the engine might not crank, preventing your Outback Sport from starting. Pay attention to clicking sounds when you turn the key or grinding during cranking, potentially signaling starter issues.
Fuel System Issues in a Subaru Outback Sport
We’re not talking about running out of gas like a silly goose. Rather, it’s problems in the fuel system itself that could leave your Outback Sport unable to start. Your Subaru Outback Sport uses fuel to combine with oxygen and powers the engine. So problems here like a clogged fuel filter or damaged fuel pump relay can result in the engine lacking the fuel it requires for ignition. Fuel injectors can also get clogged over time, so consider a fuel injector cleaner like Red Line to clean them out and improve starting.
Electrical System or Wiring Problems in a Subaru Outback Sport
Ok, well yes that image is a joke, but I want to emphasize modern cars now rely heavily on electronics, expanding the number of things that can go wrong. Even in older models, common culprits include blown fuses, spark issues, damaged ignition switches, or broken sensors. Faulty wiring and electronics like these may prevent your car from starting. Be on the lookout for intermittent starting, warning lights, or failure to crank as signs of an underlying electrical problem. Pinpointing and fixing these often needs a knowledgeable mechanic near you.
Solutions: Let’s Get Your Subaru Outback Sport Starting Again!
If you think you might know what the issue may be, it’s time to figure out the cause of your car’s failure to start, and then the next step is to try to mend the issue. Here’s advice for the typical issues we’ve covered thus far:
How to Identify and Fix Battery Issues in a Subaru Outback Sport
If you suspect a battery issue is to blame for your Subaru’s trouble turning on, first check the battery terminals Make sure they are corrosion-free, secure, and correctly connected. Should you find corrosion on the terminals, a baking soda and water solution can help clean them.
Once you have checked the battery terminals, you can check to see if the battery is just out of charge, or worse, it’s old and weak, or dead and needs to be replaced. For this, you can charge the battery in a few different ways:
- With the help of another vehicle and jumper cables to jump-start your Subaru’s battery.
- Use a car battery charger that you can plug into a socket to charge it up.
- Use a portable car battery charger you can take with you on the go, so you are never left stranded when on the move.
If the battery charges fully and performs as expected, the issue may be resolved. However, if the battery has aged or lacks capacity, replacing it will be necessary. Otherwise, even sufficiently charging it to start your Outback Sport may only provide temporary relief before it runs out of charge again in the near future. Using a multimeter or OB2 scanner to evaluate the battery’s condition can determine if it’s worth preserving or requires swapping out. Suitable replacement batteries for your specific Subaru can be found on Amazon here by entering your vehicle details to filter for the right fit and choosing a highly-rated seller.
If charging your Outback Sport’s battery fails to solve ongoing issues like frequent draining and recharging even after installing a new battery, an underlying problem likely causes the excessive drain. Professional diagnostic services would then be needed to inspect and identify the root cause. You can also consult a mechanic online through us or obtain an instant quote from a mobile mechanic.
How to Identify and Fix Alternator Problems in a Subaru Outback Sport
If you think the alternator is the reason your Subaru Outback Sport won’t start, a test can confirm. If you can temporarily get the auto running (you may need a jump start), and while it’s running, disconnect the positive terminal of your car’s battery. It’s probably the alternator if the engine dies soon after disconnecting the positive lead. Keep in mind though this test can be risky and damage sensitive electronics in your wheels, so it’s best to talk to a professional mechanic locally or online first since this test risks harming the delicate electronics in your Subaruvehicle.
If you figure out that the alternator is the problem, it’s a case of having it replaced. I recommend consulting an online or local mechanic as they will advise you on how difficult the repair is for your specific model, and you can work out if you want to try it yourself, or with the advice of an online mechanic
If you do want to try it yourself or take it to a local garage, you can often buy the replacement parts yourself cheaper than at the garage, but you need to know what to get for your model of Subaru Outback Sport. You find all the information you need about your specific vehicle by searching online for something like “dmv Subaru vin check owner“, which is a purchasable report, that will give the specs for your vehicle and which parts are compatible, and then you can go get the alternator parts you need. However, an easier option is, Amazon probably has the alternator you need online, at a cheaper price, and their site easily shows which ones will go in your specific car model. Check the Amazon alternator page here.
How to Identify and Fix Starter Motor Problems in a Subaru Outback Sport
If you question if the starter motor is the root cause for your Outback Sport refusing to start, listen carefully for a clicking noise when you turn the ignition key. If heard, but the engine does not turn over, the starter motor likely requires replacement. You can take it to a local garage and have them repair it, or repair it yourself with the help and advice from an online mechanic guiding you.
If you need it, one of the cheapest and easiest places to get a new starter motor, for your exact vehicle model is on the Amazon here.
How to Identify and Solve Fuel System Problems in a Subaru Outback Sport
If you think a fuel system malfunction might be causing the no-start, tune your ears for the fuel pump hum when you flip the key to “on” before attempting to start the car. The pump should emit a quiet humming for a few seconds. Should no such quiet hum be audible, the fuel pump could be defective. Difficult starting, stalling, or poor throttle response may also result from a clogged fuel filter. Both pump and filter issues normally need a professional mechanic to diagnose and fix them properly, often involving fuel pressure testing and specialized diagnostic gear. Later in this article, I detail the best ways to get help from a local Subaru mechanic near you.
How to Fix Electrical or Wiring Problems in a Subaru Outback Sport
If you suspect it’s an wiring problem, first check the fuses for the ignition system, and replace any that have blown. If your Outback Sport starts after this, it was a successful, inexpensive repair! But if your Subaru Outback Sport refuses to start, even sometimes, the ignition switch itself could be the cause of the issue. Warning lights on the dashboard could also mean a damaged sensor. These can be complex issues needing a qualified mechanic to diagnose and fix (see below advice on local mechanics).
How to Prevent Starting Issues in a Subaru Outback Sport
As grandad would say: “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”. Here’s how to prevent future troubles starting your Outback Sport:
Routine Upkeep of Your Subaru Outback Sport
Regular maintenance is key to avoiding issues, including oil changes, battery checks, cleaning terminals, replacing the fuel filter as needed, and having a mechanic examine the car regularly. If confused about maintenance for your model, ask a mechanic locally or online for clarification.
Drive Your Outback Sport Regularly
If your Subaru Outback Sport happens to sit motionless in the garage or front yard for too long without being driven, the battery can weaken as it is not being charged up by the engine running, through the alternator. Try your best to drive your car regularly to maintain a charged battery. If you remember you haven’t driven your car in a while, take it for a brief drive around town to ensure there is still a charge left.
Note: Letting the battery entirely drain is also bad for its longevity, so try to avoid that.
Take Notice Of Warning Signs
If you notice any abnormal things like unusual sounds, changes in driving and performance, or warning lights lit up on the dashboard, do not ignore them. These are often early signs of an issue that should be addressed ASAP before they escalate into larger problems later on. Consult with a mechanic locally or online about these problems and get advice on if they require attention.
When to Ask a Subaru Mechanic Online
If you have limited time available, or despite putting in real effort on your own, you still can’t get your car to start, consider consulting a Subaru mechanic online. It delivers expert guidance in just minutes from the comfort of your living room, and is far less expensive than a tow and diagnosis at the local garage.
Benefits of an Online Subaru Mechanic
Online Subaru mechanics can review your symptoms, past repair history, and circumstances to provide troubleshooting steps tailored to your situation. With so many Subaru mechanics available they can help fix nearly any problem, it doesn’t if matter it’s your Outback Sport that’s having issues or a Subaru Sambar Dias won’t start, the online mechanics can help sort anything in no time. And with many household budgets tighter these days, the convenience and affordability of online mechanics help, keep your wallet happy too.
You can describe the issues you’re having, ask Subaru mechanics endless questions, and even submit photos and videos so you can show the mechanic what you mean. You can talk to them via online chat or phone call, whichever you prefer. The Subaru mechanic will diagnose the problem, advise the top solution for your particular situation, and even walk you through basic maintenance step-by-step.
If you’re seeking reassurance from a certified mechanic before purchasing expensive parts, or just pressed for time – online assistance has real benefits. Give it a try – you may be surprised just how easy and stress-free it is.
So feel free to try out our Subaru repair questions service and see for yourself!
When and How to Get a Local Subaru Mechanics Help
When your Subaru Outback Sport won’t start, and you are unable to repair it yourself, thinking about how to get your vehicle to the garage can be a nightmare. There are options like roadside services, that come to you and can provide simple fixes to get your car moving enough again, so you can get it to a mechanic garage for proper repairs. You can also use a towing service, but these can be costly, easily into the hundreds of dollars. A much better option is the use of a mobile mechanic, who will come to you at your home, place of work, or by the roadside, and carry out repairs there and then for you, so you can get your Outback Sport started again ASAP.
So if you think a mobile mechanic is the best solution for you, instead of searching on Google something like “mobile auto service near me“, the best in the USA that also covers most towns is YourMechanic, I have personally recommended them to countless people across the country and they always have a great experience.
Reasons I recommend them:
- They use experienced ASE-certified mechanics
- They come to you, which is super convenient
- You see the price upfront, no surprises or hidden fees
- Low Cost compared to regular garages
If you would like to know more, the process to use them is this.
- Visit their official website here: YourMechanic
- Get an instant free quote for what you need
- Book a time and place for the mechanic to come to you
- The mechanic will arrive in a fully stocked repair van and repair it right in front of you
- Pay when the job is completed.
Super easy, super reliable, super convenient, and highly recommended.
In short, when your Subaru Outback Sport doesn’t turn over, it can be a major inconvenience. However, grasping what might be triggering the problems, being able to troubleshoot them, and knowing what actions are required in each case, and where to get help if needed, will be a huge help. Remember that routine care is vital to avoiding most car issues.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) When a Subaru Outback Sport Won’t Start
Subaru Outback Sport won’t start but lights come on?
If your Subaru Outback Sport‘s lights turn on but it still won’t start, the issue is likely not related to the battery. It’s highly possible there is a problem with the engine starter. Check to see if you hear any clicking sounds when attempting to crank the key. If so, the starter motor is trying to engage but failing. Get a mechanic examine the starter motor – it may need to be repaired or replaced.
Subaru Outback Sport won’t start but has power?
When your Subaru Outback Sport has power (lights, radio etc work) but fails to start, there may be a fuel delivery problem. Issues like a faulty fuel pump relay could prevent fuel getting to the engine. Without enough fuel, combustion can’t happen and the engine won’t start. Listen near the back seat when turning the key – you should hear the fuel pump prime for a few seconds. If not, get a mechanic check the fuel system.
Subaru Outback Sport won’t start but battery is good?
If your Subaru Outback Sport‘s battery checks out OK and is fully charged, but the car still refuses to start, the underlying cause is likely electrical. Possible issues include a bad ignition switch, broken sensor, or wiring problems. As electrical issues can be tricky, diagnosis by a professional mechanic is best. They can accurately identify the specific electrical fault and have it repaired.
Subaru Outback Sport won’t start just clicking?
When you turn the key and just hear clicking but the engine fails to turn over, the most common cause is a faulty starter motor. The click comes from the starter solenoid attempting to activate the starter motor, but the motor itself fails to crank the engine. As the starter motor needs mechanical repair or replacing, consult with a reliable mechanic to get your Subaru Outback Sport running again.
What if my Subaru Outback Sport won’t start up?
First things first, take a deep breath and try to stay calm. Look for any odd noises, flashing lights, or changes in how it runs that could point to the issue. Chances are the culprit is one of the common problems we’ll talk about here. If you still can’t pinpoint the exact issue, you’ll have to ask for help from a trusted Subaru mechanic locally or online.
Determine if my Subaru Outback Sport won’t start because of a bad battery?
Clues that your Subaru’s battery is the issue are, a slow cranking engine, dim front lights, and battery warning symbols lighting up on the dash. You can also check that the battery terminals are clean, corrosion-free, and tightly fastened. If your battery is worn out it’s probably best to just replace it entirely.
How to prevent my Subaru Outback Sport from failing to start in the future?
To prevent this nuisance from reoccuring, scheduled maintenance is vital. This includes oil changes, testing the battery and cleaning its terminals, changing out the fuel filter when needed, and getting your Subaru Outback Sport checked out by a mechanic on a regular basis. Also, make sure to drive the car regularly so the battery stays charged.
Can I consult an online mechanic if my Subaru Outback Sport fails to start up?
Yes, you can. An online mechanic service like ours can offer instant skilled Subaru mechanic aid and advice, without you having to leave your home. This is particularly helpful if your Subaru Outback Sport is unable to start and is immobile in the parking area,.
How can services like MechanicAnswer.com be of service if my Subaru Outback Sport fails to start?
We link you with qualified Subaru mechanics who can offer proposals tailored to your exact quandary. You can brief them about your vehicle troubles, ask as many questions as needed, upload videos or pictures so you can show in detail the issue. The specialist auto mechanic will be able to help, pinpoint the problem, and propose the best plan of action and guide you through it.
Interesting Subaru Outback Sport Facts
Did you know that the Subaru Outback Sport was actually the precursor to the popular Subaru Crosstrek? It’s like the OG of the crossover game! And get this, the Outback Sport was only produced for a limited time, making it a rare gem on the road. Plus, it’s got some serious off-road capabilities, thanks to its raised suspension and all-wheel drive. So, if you’re feeling adventurous and want to take your Outback Sport off the beaten path, it’s got your back. And here’s a fun fact for you: the Outback Sport was originally marketed as a “rugged, outdoor-oriented” vehicle, making it the perfect companion for all your outdoor escapades. So, if you’re currently staring at your Outback Sport in frustration because it won’t start, just remember all the cool and unique features that make it one of a kind. You’ll be back on the road in no time, ready to conquer any adventure that comes your way!