Can't find connectors!

So, this one is annoyingly silly.
The check engine light has been coming on my car (1999 Subaru Legacy Outback) and I trouble-shot it down to one specific electrical connector with intermittent contact (connector from the rear wiring harness to the canister purge valve). How am I SURE it’s that connector? If I wiggle it, the Check Engine Light goes out. Can’t get much more definitive than that.
After doing some more troubleshooting (disconnecting it, shooting both sides with electrical contact cleaner, touching up all the contacts with a file to get rid of any corrosion, gooping everything up with dielectric grease), I noticed the connector wasn’t connecting. One of the pins was misaligned. No big deal. I just need to replace the connector.
Except I can’t find one. Due to the fact that the connector gets soused with salt water and snow in the wintertime, AND that it plugs directly into the purge valve, it has to be waterproof, and fit the pins. No splicing possible.
I check out the local parts stores. Nothing even close. Radio Shack? Nada. I call the local dealer. They don’t sell connectors. THe closest thing they sell is the Rear Wiring Harness, which would require tearing our the interior to replace. I call the local salvage yards. They don’t DO connectors. They cut up the wiring, and sell it as copper scrap.

So, aside from a new habit of looking covetously at other Subarus, where can I find this darn connector?

Used, from wrecking ( recycling ) yard.
Cut it as a pigtail and splice the wires a few inches back.

Not selling connectors is quite common for all brands and was a big Ford issue not long ago.
Hence, I would always clip and keep all the good remaining connectors from any old harness when we’d sell a new one.

Thanks for the info. However, the junkyards/salvage yards/auto recyclers/wrecking yard/boneyards nearby send the harnesses out to be melted for copper. They do not have the connectors to sell at all.

I would solder the leads together. Use shrink tubes.

You could get a matching pair of weatherproof connectors at or

If the pin is not broken can you bend it back into place?

The connector plugs directly into the purge vent valve, so I can’t splice in a different set of connectors. Ditto with soldering the wires onto the valve.

"However, the junkyards/salvage yards/auto recyclers/wrecking yard/boneyards nearby . . . "
Can’t Find It Close By ?
Live On The Edge. Be Adventurous. Expand Your Horizons. Hit The Road.

Make some calls and find a yard that’s got what you need and take a road trip.


You will probably have to find a U-Pull type salvage yard to get what you need. I needed a pigtail once and local salvage yards told me if I wanted that pigtail, I would have to buy the entire wiring harness for the truck. If branching out to find the pigtail from a more distant salvage yard doesn’t work, you may just have to bite the bullet and get the harness assembly from the dealership. Interiors are easier to take apart than a lot of people think.

I agree with Mark9207, a U-Pull salvage yard is perfect for what you need.

You could solder the wires directly to the purge switch… WOuldnt hurt you much I mean how many x have you had to mess with that valve or setup… If the valve went bad youd cut the wires replace the switch and do the same thing…Being somewhat of an auto electrical pro…these things don’t really bother me as much as it does others I guess… Unless theres something else I am not getting…

I could always shoot down to my U-Pull it place…they got em, no doubt… What do you want to do? Want me to get you one? I’d want a pic of the connector first tho…

Yes, many salvage yards allow customers to find and remove their own parts. There are online yards that will pull your part and mail it to you for a price…Usually a reasonable price…Google “Used Subaru Parts”

My U-pull it has those vehicles in the yard usually…just shoot me a pic and I mite be able to find you one…I’m at that damn yard far more than I’d like to be anyway

I love junkyards! All cars look the same there…God bless the people who own and operate them…