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HELP !!! Brake, AT Oil Temp and VDC light indicator flashing on dash!


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I have a 2011 Legacy 2.5i Premium with about 78k miles on it. I was driving yesterday evening and all of a sudden after traveling for about 13 miles, the Brake, AT Oil Temp and VDC lights on the dash turned on (attaching the image) . The Brake and AT Oil Temp light flashes and the VDC holds steady. I immediately pulled over to see if I could do anything about it. After turning off the car for about a minute and stating it again, the lights went out and did not turn back on for the next 10 miles or so. I thought It might be a one time issue. However, the same thing happened this morning as well. I checked the gas cap and brake fluid levels, which seemed just fine.

 

Anyone else had similar issue ? What was the fix ?

 

One thing I want to mention is that the brakes seem to work just fine even though the Brake light flashes. Also, I had the rotors and brakes replaced about 3 months back. However, I am not sure if that might have to do anything with this, since everything was fine just until recently. I also replaced my left low beam about 3 weeks back to a standard H7. So I don't think that might cause this either. I noticed though, that the left orange side marker light has burnt off (not the turn signal). So maybe this is causing the issue ?

 

Any help would be greatly appreciated !

Lights.JPG.3cf02944e3e81ca0f7d5fc77922b6d44.JPG

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Take it to the dealer and they can read the codes from the TCM. The problem should be easily diagnosable from there.

GTEASER's 2012 Legacy GT - Sold

GTEASER's 2009 XTeaser - Sold

GTEASER's 1992 Legacy SS - Sold

 

Stapp's Law: “The universal aptitude for ineptitude makes any human accomplishment an incredible miracle.”

 

"Simple incompetence is a far more sinister force in the world than evil intent."

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Scooby Fan : I haven't had the transmission serviced anytime during this time. It works perfectly without any discernible issues. I also checked the maintenance schedule and looks like the CVT transmission doesn't need any kind of oil checks etc.

 

GTeaser : I plan on doing that shortly. However, the nearest dealer is about 50 miles away. So, I was hoping I can get some experiences from people here to see if its something that can be resolved fairly easily and quickly.

 

Minuccims : Thanks for that input. I will try to replace that. I checked under the hood but seems like the side marker light cannot be accessed from there. Is this to be accessed from behind, from the fender area ? Is there a thread or manual on how to replace the marker lights ? Also, is there a specific light model # to look up ?

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^ you need to remove the front bumper and headlight to change out that bulb. It is a #194 5W bulb. Bumper removal is not as bad as it seems, see below.

 

http://legacygt.com/forums/showthread.php/diy-headlight-removal-2010-206441.html?t=206441

GTEASER's 2012 Legacy GT - Sold

GTEASER's 2009 XTeaser - Sold

GTEASER's 1992 Legacy SS - Sold

 

Stapp's Law: “The universal aptitude for ineptitude makes any human accomplishment an incredible miracle.”

 

"Simple incompetence is a far more sinister force in the world than evil intent."

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I had a similar situation with all those lights intermittently coming on, and it turned out to be a transmission issue. Nothing big as I was able to continue driving the car, though cautiously. Like GTeaser said, best thing to do is go to the dealer to pull the code for what is wrong. If I remember correctly, my issue was that one of the sphenoid valves in the transmission was loose or just not working right.
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  • 4 weeks later...

So, I finally had a chance to replace the Front Left Marker light bulb that had burnt off. I drove the car for about 35 miles twice after replacing the lamp, and none of the VDC,AT Oil Temp and Brake lights flashed ! So, seems like replacing the bulb solved the issue.

 

I hope if anyone has a similar issue, they first ensure all their bulbs are working fine and replace those first, rather than freaking out and taking the car right away to a dealer only to get ripped off. It just amazes me why someone would design a circuit like that, which could freak the s**T out of the drivers by flashing the brake, at oil temp and VDC light. I can't believe one damn bulb would actually turn off the VDC ! Or this might be a purposeful design so that Subaru dealers can get a chance to rip-off scared customers. And it only cost me $2.50 for that bulb ! Although replacing it was a nightmare.

 

This is the second thing I officially hate about this otherwise great car. The first being replacing the low beam lights :)

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Glad to see you figured it out and thanks for the update. Maybe the side marker bulb has to be out for a certain amount of time before the dash lights come on. But if that were the case I would expect others on this forum to know about it. And yes that's a pretty messed up way to warm someone about a bulb. I think quite a few MFG's (VW, Lexus) have a bulb light on the dash, specifically to warn you when a bulb is out. Wouldn't that be nice, considering how often our cars go through bulbs.
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rl2504 - Pretty much from the fender lining. I read that some people have taken the bumper off for better accessibility. However, I felt that might be more time consuming. Changing that light wasn't easy. You don't have a direct line of sight and have to "feel" the slots,connectors, wiring to get around it. I also scratched my forearm quite a bit in the process. Worst design. I cursed the heck out of the engineers who designed it that way.
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  • 2 weeks later...

I just a similar issue last night. It was quite cold, and I had just gotten on the highway. 10min later on the highway as I was accelerating(making passing move) I got the flashinglights(BRAKE, AT OIL TEMP) and the VDC stayed on. I slowed and pulled to the slow lane .. nothing seemed out of the ordinary. When I got home, I turned the car off and waited 10sec before restarting .. the VDC light blinked and stay offed. Checked the brake fluid(mid-level).

 

So this morning, I warmed the car and jump on highway for work. I got the car up to 120km/h .. no issues .. drove for 20min. I still might bring it in to the Dealer to take a look.

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  • 2 years later...

Has anyone found a fix for this? my 2011 started doing this same thing to me last week, went away and started back up again today. All the bulbs appear to be working, the power brake works, and the only thing I've noticed that doesn't work is the shifter interlock or gear shift lock solenoid. It no longer locks the stick. This means I can put the car in gear without pressing the brake.

 

https://www.amazon.com/photos/share/GoN81XZAMoQeDO9gUdw4WL6vM2gBiqLFLBs9lhin05A

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Are you on LEDs? My dash lights went nuts after switching my brake lights to LED. Things went back to normal when I put the factory bulbs back in.

 

None of the external bulbs are LED. I have had LED cabin dome lights for the past two years or so. I saw others said it had to do with indicator lights so I did a walk-a-round with the hazards on and all the other lights. Everything looked good. I haven't been able to visually inspect the brake lights yet.

 

Last night I also checked most of the fuses and they all appeared to be in order.

 

I even plugged my Craftsman CanOBD2 Diagnostic Tool Model 87702 in and it reported no errors.

 

I'm still at a loss.

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  • 1 month later...
Has anyone found a fix for this? my 2011 started doing this same thing to me last week, went away and started back up again today. All the bulbs appear to be working, the power brake works, and the only thing I've noticed that doesn't work is the shifter interlock or gear shift lock solenoid. It no longer locks the stick. This means I can put the car in gear without pressing the brake.

 

https://www.amazon.com/photos/share/GoN81XZAMoQeDO9gUdw4WL6vM2gBiqLFLBs9lhin05A

 

So I think I resolved the issue. When I checked all my lights by doing a walk-a-round, I wasn't able to check the brake lights, on the red tail lights. A few weeks later I had someone sit in the driver seat and pump the brakes. By doing this I was able to identify that only the window brake light was working and the brake lights that are a part of the tail light were both burnt out. They must have both burnt out around the same time. I'm guessing that the burnt out brake filaments caused a change in the voltage that the onboard computer monitors and this triggered the flashing dash light.

 

For anyone else with this issue, check the brake lights, not just the tail lights.

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  • 5 months later...
Suggest you first focus on the burnt out side marker. Others have gotten this combo after changing brake lights to LEDs.

 

I think that's ^ is it.

 

I just noticed that my 2011 leg had one burned out brake light and parking light. I changed out both parking and brake lights to thee following (after looking up on Slyvania and autozone to make sure they were compatible).

 

Brake Lights: https://www.autozone.com/electrical-and-lighting/brake-light-mini-bulb/sylvania-led-brake-light-mini-bulb/770357_0_1556

 

Parking / Courtesy Lights: https://www.autozone.com/electrical-and-lighting/license-plate-light-mini-bulb/sylvania-led-license-plate-light-mini-bulb/13797_0_18268

 

I was sitting in traffic, waiting for a construction flagger to "give us the go" wo i threw my car in park. I had been driving for about 30 minuets before this point. after i put it back in drive, the same lights described by the OP came on (a bit disconcerting before a 3 hr road trip). i pulled over and shut the car down for 3 min. after starting, only the brake light and VDC lights were on. 15 min later i pulled over for gas. filled up, turned the car back on and the dash was clear.

 

is there anything we can install to control the voltage to the LED's sos we don't have this issue?

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