Starting problem on 96 Subaru Legacy


Howdy all. I have a 1996 Subaru Legacy with 120K miles. Recently, it wouldnt start, so I changed the old battery. It worked well for 2-3 days then wouldnt start again, unless I charged it for a while. the brake/engine light came on, so I changed the alternator. it worked well for a month, but tonight, it wouldn`t start again. i had a starnger jump it and it started up. if its not the battery, and its not the alternator–what is it!!! Thank ye kindly!


If you just hear a click from the starter you are most likely due for some replacement starter solenoid contacts.


First, could you tell us exactly what you mean when you say it would not start. Describe what happens and what sounds you hear. BTW the term “turning over” can mean the engine is being turned over by the starter or that the engine is starting. It depends what the writer means, so try not to use that term without defining it.


OK Second, have you had the battery or alternator checked before you replaced them?


If it not the battery and not the alternator, it’s something in between. That something is corrosion between the battery cable terminals and the battery posts. Disconnect and sand, scrape, or file the battery posts and the battery cable terminals (on the INSIDE). Reattach and …VROOOM…VROOOOM!


If the battery is being drained while the car is parked then you need to check foor a parasitic current drain.


Hi Thanks for your reply. My bad for not defining. When I turned the key the engine turned over i.e., was being turned over by the starter but not actually engaging and starting up. I think there was juice as all the dash lights, radio light, etc were working. Does this make a little more sense? Thanks!


Thanks! I`ll try that!


If the starter is turning the engine, then the problem is not the battery or the starter. You have an ignition or a fuel problem.


It’s normal, that after you shut off the engine, the engine cooling fan will run for a few minuets. It’s NOT normal, for the engine cooling fan to come on after the engine has cooled. At periods, after you have shut off the engine, go to the car and look for lights and listen for fans, or anything else, running. If you see, or hear, anything, THAT could be your battery drain.