2001 Forester Check Engine/Cat Conv Problems

Discussion in 'Subaru Forester' started by Bill, Jan 26, 2007.

  1. Bill

    Bill Guest

    I have a 2001 Forester that I bought new with 101k miles and the check
    engine light has been coming on since 91k. I've taken to the dealer
    twice (91k and 101k) as well as a independent shop (97k). The dealer
    replaced the Knock Sensor and cleaned the Air Assist Valve (91k). The
    independent performed an Air Induction Service (97k). When the check
    engine light came back on less than 2 weeks after having it in with the
    independent, he didn't want to deal with it anymore but said that
    perhaps the "cat is showing it's age". I took it back to the dealer with
    101k and they now claim that the catalytic converter needs to be
    replaced but want $1050 for it. I called an independent exhaust shop
    and they quoted me $550. For what it's worth, the Front O2 sensor was
    replaced under recall at 81K.

    My questions are:

    1 - How hard is it to replace the catalytic converter? Do I need
    special tools and I'm guessing getting the bolts loosened may be a
    chore. Will I need a manual and do you have a recommendation?

    2 - Where can I get parts? I called an Autozone and Advance Auto Parts
    and neither of them carry the parts. I have yet to try the dealer but
    have looked online and a few places claim they have them in the $300
    range. Do you have to get any gaskets, etc or do these come with the
    part when you order.

    I appreciate the feedback because saving $700 from the dealer if it's a
    few bolts I need to turn would make me very happy!

    Bill, Jan 26, 2007
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  2. Bill

    fish6525 Guest

    Bill, suggest the first thing you do is to have the "codes pulled" from
    the car's on board computer. A code read out will tell you exactly why
    the "check engine light" is coming on. I am surprised that the dealer
    and independent shop haven't already done that. If so, they should have
    told you the result of their diagnostic work.

    Once the diagnostic work is completed, then you will know if you need a
    new cat converter or not, though, I have my doubts that is your
    problem. However, if you need a new cat, I wouldn't suggest doing the
    work yourself. All bolts on an exhaust system get rusted to the point
    of not unscrewing. All shops put a car up on a lift, to easily get at
    the underside, then torch off, or cut off the muffler system.

    Pull the codes first, good luck! Larry
    fish6525, Jan 26, 2007
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  3. Bill

    fish6525 Guest

    I forgot to say that you can get codes pulled at no charge at Auto Zone
    or Advanced Auto stores, prolly some others too. Just look around under
    the dash, below the steering wheel, for the large open connector that
    the diagnostic instrument would plug into. Knowing where that connector
    is, is helpful to show the Auto Zone guy where to hook up to.
    Regards, Larry
    fish6525, Jan 26, 2007
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