Blogs Car Info Our Show Deals Mechanics Files Vehicle Donation

Subaru that found new youth

Hello All
I’ve got a Subaru Forester of 2004 red station wagon, standard transmission and with 180.000miles on it. No turbo. It runs great, has been very well maintained. The dealership congratulated me on its age and mileage. Yup I’ve done every for it. And some… I went for the inspection and despite its 4x4 “noise”’, the tech did not find anything wrong with it.
Here is the thing. When I left the garage and ever since I feel that it picked up power: Yes I know…! When I had to down shift it’s no longer necessary. It climbs hills much better than it used to. I tried to reach 90 MPH thing it never done before. It went there in no time. I don’t push that car but it did picked up power and I can’t understand why. The garage does not understand either. My driving habits haven’t change and I don’t and ever have exceed its capacities.
Someone has an idea? Thank you

If there is a factory TSB calling for an update on the ECU’s software, then the dealership is required to perform that update when a car is brought in for service. Why don’t you ask if there was an update/reflash done when the car was in their shop?


The floor mat that was under the gas pedal got moved so now you have full throttle available??


Another simple explanation could be one of the spark plug connections was loose and it was reseated correctly or there was a air leak in the air intake system.

I haven’t brought the car to the dealership as it is very far away from me and my regular mechanic seems to be very knowledgeable. I am in France and I must admit that I don’t know what is " TCB; ECU’s software and reflash".
I could ask them to put the car on their computer ?
Thank you

No, this has been checked out
Thank you

This, I don’t know but it seems that it would make sense. I’ll check it out
Thank you

Your mention of the “dealership” caused me to believe that you had taken the car to a dealer’s service department. If you did, in fact, take it to an independent mechanic, then the possibility of an update/reflash of the ECU’s software is very unlikely.

TSB=Technical Service Bulletin
These are sent to dealerships in order to make them aware of recommended repair procedures in the event that a car owner experiences a particular problem.

ECU=Engine Control Unit
This is the “computer” that controls things like the air-fuel mixture that the engine receives, the timing of the valves if the engine has variable valve timing, and some other functions. It can be updated by dealerships when the mfr releases a new version of software for it.