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Total gearbox fail at 136,000 km on 2010 Impreza XV AWD. Is this normal?

fail gearbox replace

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#1 Redzircon

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Posted 11 January 2020 - 01:01 PM

I apologize for this first post being a request, as I normally prefer to contribute before asking a forum for advice.

 

We have a 2010 Subaru Impreza XV with 136K.

We don't drive it hard, in fact my wife says I drive like an old man.

 

The gearbox and clutch inside it have just totally failed and I need to spend $3,000 on a refurbishment. The mechanic said when he drained the oil it was silvery. (I can add more detail on Monday)

Am I wrong in thinking Subaru gearbox should last much much longer? I would have expected 300,000km for such a durable brand. (The mechanic says we have another ~ 70,000km left on the clutch, which gives you an idea of how we drive it)

I was planning to buy another Subaru in the next year or so, but now...maybe not. Damn, as I love their AWD system, and the flat four.

 

  • We tow a small trailer sometimes.
  • We recently replaced the the thrust bearing. Could this have been installed incorrectly and placed the gearbox under pressure?
  • Car was once hit from back left corner -- but up high.
  • The car is driven on bitumen 99% of the time, and 1/2 of its use has been on freeways

    NB My wife said the towball was slightly loose, and so the trailer would jerk slightly as we started from a full stop. I wonder if this would stress the internal traction/clutch system.

Is there any point in writing to Subaru or making a fuss on social media?

Thanks

 



#2 Beckers

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Posted 14 January 2020 - 12:35 PM

When you say the gearbox has totally failed, does it still drive but makes noises or can you not select any gears etc ??

When they checked the clutch and said is has 70K at the time thrust bearing was replaced, was the clutch fork checked as they can wear out on these cars. 

Was the hydraulic system checked, ie clutch hose, master and slave ?? 

So its strange that now the clutch is slipping or does work at all now, did your mechanic do something wrong ??

 

Your car will be 6 years out of warranty, has it been serviced with a subaru dealer ??

Because a complete service history from a subaru dealer will work in your favour.

 

We need more info to help you any further.

 

You might also consider a secondhand gearbox ??



#3 Asymmetry

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Posted 16 January 2020 - 08:29 AM

Had several subarus including this exact model. No issues. 

When was the last time gearbox oil was changed?



#4 Redzircon

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Posted 19 January 2020 - 12:50 PM

Thanks for the excellent replies to my question

 

Car was still driveable, but a slight tapping noise was heard, then taken to mechanic to check. First I though it was a stick caught underneath. If only.

On removing the gearbox, he noticed the oil was silver.

Once the gearbox was taken to the specialist in Geelong, the mechanic said he saw the a big 'clip' in the gearbox had broken, and was flying around loose inside, creating all kinds of damage. Total bill $4340

I'm pretty sure oil was changed when timing chain replaced. (I'll need to check)

Is it at all possible that a slightly loose towball and a trailer jerking back and forth has done the damage, or is it possible the new thrust bearing has been installed incorrectly?
 

In any case, i am no expecting anything from subaru.



#5 duncanm

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Posted 20 January 2020 - 06:38 AM

Sounds like the centre viscous diff retaining ring came off. This is a known issue, but I thought was addressed some time back. Can be caused by running mismatched tyres, which overheat the diff.

I'd try Subaru - you never know.

The trailer should have nothing to do with it.

To give you an idea of the age of the issue, my '99 outback almost did the same thing at 200k, but I managed to catch it and only lost a single gear in the transfer case.

#6 Redzircon

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Posted 21 January 2020 - 08:17 AM

Hi here duncanm, thank you for your response. Very interesting.

Mismatched tyres might be the cause. I'm using different tyres on the front and back --  ie 2 X michelin on front, and 2 X yokohama on back .

Is this what you meant? If that's the case then the tyre sellers need to know.

 

Update:

 

The manual warns the owner. Wish I'd read that.

I'll be buying a new set of tyres.

 

I am surprised that Bob Janes and Donnellan never mentioned this when they sold me tyres.

The reason they are mismatched is that one was damaged and its replacement was no longer available.

 



#7 duncanm

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Posted 21 January 2020 - 12:00 PM

Hi here duncanm, thank you for your response. Very interesting.

Mismatched tyres might be the cause. I'm using different tyres on the front and back --  ie 2 X michelin on front, and 2 X yokohama on back .

Is this what you meant? If that's the case then the tyre sellers need to know.

 

Update:

 

The manual warns the owner. Wish I'd read that.

I'll be buying a new set of tyres.

 

I am surprised that Bob Janes and Donnellan never mentioned this when they sold me tyres.

The reason they are mismatched is that one was damaged and its replacement was no longer available.

 

 

when I say 'mismatched' - its rolling diameter  you need to worry about. ie: all need to be the same size, and reasonably same level of wear.  Ideal case is 4x tyres of the same make and model, rotate regularly through life, and replaced together.



#8 Beckers

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Posted 21 January 2020 - 06:54 PM

Sounds like the centre viscous diff retaining ring came off. This is a known issue, but I thought was addressed some time back. Can be caused by running mismatched tyres, which overheat the diff.

I'd try Subaru - you never know.
 

I think the op had it fixed already, unlikely subaru will refund you for some other workshop to fix it.

Unless there is no dealership nearby. 



#9 Redzircon

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Posted 22 January 2020 - 08:00 AM

Thanks everyone, it's my error:  front tyres are 1/3 worn, rear need replacement.



#10 Beckers

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Posted 22 January 2020 - 04:23 PM

Thanks everyone, it's my error:  front tyres are 1/3 worn, rear need replacement.

This wouldn't of caused the centre diff to go bad, so don't be to hard on yourself.

Did your mechanic mention the transfer gears when he explained the damage to you ??







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