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Grinding/Screeching Startup Sound


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Ok. I have searched around and have not found a good answer, or one I like, about my issue. So, my car has been acting weird as of late. It seems that when I startup the car in the mornings, it makes a loud screeching noise and immediately goes away. I brought in my car and Subaru told me that it was my belts since it was almost 100k. So, I did the work and it cost me a whooping >$1000. But that didn't fix it and I brought it back to them. They said that it was a matter of just adjusting the belts since they are new so I went a long with it. Well...that didn't fix it and I brought it back to them a third time and they kept it overnight and called me back and said it was my starter. I don't buy it because they should have diagnosed it in the beginning before immediately trying to jack me for $1000.

 

Anyways, I wanted to see if anyone had the same issues. Also, what I have noticed was that my interior light level indicator randomly moves for 5 to 6 at times. And I used to have random CEL with rough running before but that went away.

 

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

 

My car info:

- 05 Subaru Legacy GT Limited

- 98K

- Second owner

- New belt

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when they told you belt, what belt? timing belt or AC, ATernator belts? if it was the AC, AT belts, I think you got scammed... if it was timing belts, yea it is $1000

 

I had this problem before, my AC, AT belts were loose, so I had it all tighten up for $30 and no more sound (mine sound like sweaking tho)

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This sounds like the starter issue. Search the forums, you'll find our 05's (and mabye others) have a noisy starter on initial startup in the cold. Try starting it cold, and releasing from the "Start" position to the "On" possition just a 1/2 second earlier. If it goes away with that, it's the starter issue. I'm thinking of replacing my starter for this specific reason. It's nothing that will hurt your motor, but REALLY annoying.
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when they told you belt, what belt? timing belt or AC, ATernator belts? if it was the AC, AT belts, I think you got scammed... if it was timing belts, yea it is $1000

 

I had this problem before, my AC, AT belts were loose, so I had it all tighten up for $30 and no more sound (mine sound like sweaking tho)

 

It was the whole thing, timing and AC. That is what is making a little ticked off. I told them about this noise and before they even looked at it, they said it was the belt.

 

Now, they are saying that it is the starter. How can I test that it is the starter or not?

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This sounds like the starter issue. Search the forums, you'll find our 05's (and mabye others) have a noisy starter on initial startup in the cold. Try starting it cold, and releasing from the "Start" position to the "On" possition just a 1/2 second earlier. If it goes away with that, it's the starter issue. I'm thinking of replacing my starter for this specific reason. It's nothing that will hurt your motor, but REALLY annoying.

 

Are you saying, put it in the Start position, wait for 1/2 and then ON? It is really annoying and painful to hear. I am debating whether to wait on it and see.

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OP, no...I'm saying put your key in and crank it over as usual. Just stop the cranking a split second earlier than you normally would.I'm not sure why it works, but it does.

 

I think it has to do with the armature in the starter getting sticky.

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My car makes that same sound when it's really cold out, but when I plug in the block heater it starts up much quicker and without the squeal. It seams like the colder it is the longer and louder it squeals, which makes me think that it could be a starter sound. With the thicker cold oil the starter has to work harder to turn over correct?
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Although I'm new to the Subaru community, the owner I just got my Legacy wagon from said he had something that sounds very similar to what's going on with yours. He had the dealer fix it with new tensioners and belts. If I recall he said one of the belts was loose or something along those lines.
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If what you're describing is what it sounds like, definitely the starter.

 

You say it's when you start up and immediately goes away. Immediate as when you turn the key? If it were belts, they'll generally start to screech a few seconds after startup when cold and go away a few seconds after and may return quickly if you turn your wheel to full lock or very close, as in backing out of a parking space or something similar.

 

If it's your starter, like mine is, the sound starts right as your engine fires. What mine sounds like is the armature, the part that turns the flywheel, stays extended for a very small amount of time after the engine is already running, usually about 1/2 second, and grinds on the flywheel teeth.

 

My mechanic offered me a starter with lifetime warranty installed for about $250 and I thought that was pretty steep, so $1000 for sumthin you didn't need is WAY worse. I'd ask to talk to the Service Manager and see if they can help you out, since they gave you really shitty service and didn't even wanna hear the problem before telling you it'd be a grand to fix it.

 

If being polite doesn't work, then start being a dick. Remember, the squeaky wheel gets the grease.

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  • 3 weeks later...
I had the same issue this winter. Spray a small amount of WD-40 into the pully on the AC Compressor. You will see where the belt moves, so spray into the cracks directly next to the belt, w/o spraying the belt. Fixed it instantaniously for me.
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  • 1 year later...
I had the same issue this winter. Spray a small amount of WD-40 into the pully on the AC Compressor. You will see where the belt moves, so spray into the cracks directly next to the belt, w/o spraying the belt. Fixed it instantaniously for me.

 

 

Dont use wd-40 on your belts it will only last a few days, They make a belt dressing found at any auto parts store for your belts. This is clearly a starter issue and wont help anyways!

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It's the starter, we all know this is a issue with these cars.

 

Replace it with a rebuilt unit or pull it, grease the shaft and put it back in.

304,000miles 5/2012 ej257 short block, 8/2011 installed VF52 turbo, @20.8psi, 280whp, 300ftlbs. CHECK your oil, these cars use it.

 

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Having the same issue intermittently upon cold startup with my 2006. Immediately upon hearing it for the first time, I was fairly convinced it was the starter hanging up and not releasing right away. Worst case scenario, your starter won't last quite as long. Since one solution is replacing the starter anyway, I say just run it...

 

It's the starter, we all know this is a issue with these cars.

 

Replace it with a rebuilt unit or pull it, grease the shaft and put it back in.

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Seems like I am having the same issue. The V-belts are relatively new (replaced in March 2012) and in good condition. Adjusted nice and tight, and the idler pulley is is good-to-go.

 

For those that replaced the starter with a remanufactured unit, where did you purchase it, and what p/n did you use?

 

Autozone has a Duralast starter p/n 19415. Need to make sure that it will work for the car.

 

Any special instructions such as starter gear to flywheel/flex-plate pitch and spacing?

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OP, don't feel bad. The timing belt is due at 105k. I wouldn't return to that dealer, but your car is GOOD TO GO for another 105k.

 

Yeah, was going to say at 100k, you were due for timing belt anyway. 1k is a bit pricey for that but it is a dealer.

 

Your noise is either the starter or a loose accessory belt.

 

-Mike Paisan

 

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  • 1 year later...

For the love of bringing dead threads back to life...

 

My car:

2005 GT ltd wagon, 5mt, bone stock.

About 98k miles, original turbo, original timing belt... everything is stock.

Right now the oil is about a quart less than perfect (still within the 'safe' range).

Fully synthetic oil for the last 10k miles, maybe its whole life. Nothing but 91+ octane.

I'm the 3rd owner. I've driven it about 1k miles since I bought it in June.

 

I experienced this exact sound for the first time this morning. From a cold start I moved the car about 20' to get it out of my driveway. A few hours later when I moved the car back, same sound. I started it up 3 more times and heard the sound each time. The sound goes away on it's own after about ½ second and the throttle doesn't seem to have any affect. Today was definitely the coldest day I've started the car (≈50°), and it hasn't moved for a few days (it's not my DD).

 

It totally sounds like my starter is hanging for a hair longer than it should... except... I saw a small puff of white smoke come out of the exhaust after each start. Not enough smoke to smell, just a very quick puff. Lightly pressing the throttle didn't make it worse. I only noticed it because I was carefully watching for it, otherwise it'd be easy to miss because it was gone immediately. It was about as much smoke as someone exhaling a light puff from a cigarette.

 

I'm very aware of the commonly occurring problems with these stock turbos, and other than the barely noticeable white puff of smoke there's been no indication that the turbo is acting up. I haven't opened it up to check for shaft play, and I haven't checked the banjo bolt. I'm planning on replacing the turbo when I do the timing belt + other stuff in the spring.

 

I'll pop the hood and take a vid if I can get my 9 mo pregnant wife to stand there and hold the camera.

 

Thoughts, concerns, questions, help? :iam:

 

If it wasn't for the ever-so-slightly-barely-noticeable-tiny (was it really even there?) puff of smoke I'd be 100% comfortable blaming the scraping noise on the starter.

Edited by StkmltS
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