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Old 06-27-2008, 02:32 PM   #1
HB_Dad
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Default PLEASE HELP: '06 Tribeca with 50,000 miles and sudden overheating issues.

Hey all,

I have an '06 Tribeca that has about 50,000 miles on it, and I have been getting a weird sporatic issue lately where the vehicle begins to overheat at idle with the A/C on. The gauge will go anywhere from 2-3 blocks above average to almost all of the way to the top. I haven't noticed this issue occuring when the A/C is NOT on. I haven't noticed any coolant loss, and there are no signs of leaks though with the A/C on i could swear I smell coolant sometimes.

I took it to the dealership last week and they popped in a new thermostat (claiming this was the cause) and they claimed to have flushed the whole system as well. They claimed to have also pressure checked the system and said the head gasket is fine. However, I had this again last night and am now concerned.

What else could be causing this? I am reluctant to go back to the dealership again for fear they will again not seriously check into the problem. Anyone have any ideas?
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Old 06-27-2008, 02:46 PM   #2
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When your car does this next time. Pull into the nearest parking lot, and leave the car on. Pop open the hood, step out and see if your radiator fan is working? Might be broken, because i had the same problem on my old jetta. I replaced the fan and it worked fine.

I first thought thermostat stuck closed too, but if it were the themostat, you'd probably overheat while driving down the road too.
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Old 06-27-2008, 02:56 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gggplaya View Post
When your car does this next time. Pull into the nearest parking lot, and leave the car on. Pop open the hood, step out and see if your radiator fan is working? Might be broken, because i had the same problem on my old jetta. I replaced the fan and it worked fine.

I first thought thermostat stuck closed too, but if it were the themostat, you'd probably overheat while driving down the road too.
The radiator fan kicks in to high to try to deal with the load. Another thing I've noticed is that the A/C will start pumping out warm air when this occurs.
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Old 06-27-2008, 03:14 PM   #4
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Check your belt/pully area. I just got my first subaru so i'm not too familiar with the boxer engine. But whatever is spinning the A/C compressor may also be spinning the water pump too. The belt may be stretched,loose,cracked and may need replacing. Tensioner may be bad etc....

I would investigate there, 50k on a serpentine belt is not uncommon to replace.

Last edited by gggplaya; 06-27-2008 at 07:01 PM.
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Old 06-27-2008, 06:53 PM   #5
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when the AC turns on, one of the fans(if not both) should turn on, regardless of engine temp. What kind of engine does the 06 tribeca have? The water pump on all subarus(that i've read for the past few years) has been run off the timing belt, not serpentine/accessory belt. and since this issue is only when AC is on, it's prolly not the water pump. and since this seems to come up when idling/not moving(right?) it looks like air isn't getting blown across your condenser and radiator.
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Old 06-27-2008, 07:03 PM   #6
gggplaya
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tribeca has a boxer H6 engine, it's pretty new. Since there aren't too many tribeca enthusiests out there, it's going to be hard to find someone that knows alot about it online. I would call up subaru and ask them if they a/c compressor and water pump work off the same belt.

This sympton can also happen during idle and not necessarily at speed as well. On my old escort, the timing belt was stretched with 172K miles on it(i was in college with no money). My car started to hiccup at idle, but ran fine when i was moving. Then it threw a camshaft position sensor code due to the loose belt. While the pullies are moving, they seem to be fine with the belt, but when at idle moving at slow speeds, the belt has a little trouble moving the pullies.

Last edited by gggplaya; 06-27-2008 at 10:07 PM.
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Old 06-28-2008, 12:54 AM   #7
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Isn't the vehicle still under warranty? Powertrain warranty was 5yr/60k miles for '06. The engine overheating is a powertrain issue, so I say take it back to the dealer and make them fix it to your satisfaction.

Of course, if you insist on not believing anything they tell you ("they claimed" this, "they claimed" that) then maybe you shouldn't waste your time there and should just fix it yourself.

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Old 06-28-2008, 01:28 AM   #8
XanRules
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Perrin knows a lot about this engine, the EZ30R. They might know!
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Old 09-18-2009, 03:07 PM   #9
HB_Dad
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HB_Dad View Post
Hey all,

I have an '06 Tribeca that has about 50,000 miles on it, and I have been getting a weird sporatic issue lately where the vehicle begins to overheat at idle with the A/C on. The gauge will go anywhere from 2-3 blocks above average to almost all of the way to the top. I haven't noticed this issue occuring when the A/C is NOT on. I haven't noticed any coolant loss, and there are no signs of leaks though with the A/C on i could swear I smell coolant sometimes.

I took it to the dealership last week and they popped in a new thermostat (claiming this was the cause) and they claimed to have flushed the whole system as well. They claimed to have also pressure checked the system and said the head gasket is fine. However, I had this again last night and am now concerned.

What else could be causing this? I am reluctant to go back to the dealership again for fear they will again not seriously check into the problem. Anyone have any ideas?
Well, over 1 year later and now at 75,000 miles, this overheat issue has become routine and happens every time the Tribeca idles for up to 10-15 minutes with the A/C running. I took my Tribeca back to the dealer this morning to look at it and a burning rubber smell that just popped up. The burning smell was a torn CV Boot with leaking on the hot manifold which is covered under my extended warranty. The good news is I was able to get them to recreate the overheating issue. After they examined the car, they determined it to be a blown left side head gasket (also under warranty). They gave me a 2009 Forester for a loaner and tell me I won't get it back until later next week. The good news is at least this issue with HOPEFULLY come to rest. I hope the head gasket is the actual cause and not a result of another issue...

On another note, after I informed my wife of the situation by phone and told her about the loaner, she told me that I should ask for a loaner of whatever car I want next. This sounds like a preliminary approval from my wife to start looking seriously into our next Subie. I may be trading in my 2006 for the 2010 when it comes in after all...
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Old 09-18-2009, 11:33 PM   #10
yarrgh
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thanks for the follow-up.
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