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Old 12-26-2010, 01:17 PM   #1
MarkF786
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Default Exhaust/Heat Shield Rattle Issue on 2008-2011 Imprezas?

Hi,

I'm new to the forum and vicariously own a 2009 Outback Sport Impreza which my wife drives. The car is in my name and I purchased it, so I guess you could say I own it too

Anyways, since she's owned the car she's had an ongoing problem with a rattling noise coming from under the car. She's had it at the dealership literally over ten times trying to get it repaired; they tried various fixes but not until a few months ago when there was a visiting field service engineer at the shop did he seemingly correctly diagnose the problem and it was fixed - until recently the problem started again.

I've left the maintenance of the car to wife, though I'd try to give her advice on dealing with the service department at the dealership; I work full-time while she's a stay-at-home mother, so I figured she had more time to deal with the problem. But after so many unsuccessful repairs, I thought I'd go with her to get the problem addressed.

This time we were given a copy of an email sent to local Subaru service departments on the topic of exhaust rattle. I don't think it would be right to share the entire letter, but I'll give a brief summary. A Field Service Engineer of SoA sent the email requesting that he be contacted about any 2008-2011 Imprezas complaining of exhaust/heat shield rattle noise so that he could personally inspect the cars. The service manager explained that there seems to be a known defect that they are investigating.

My question to the forum members is has anyone else had a similar rattle problem that has been unresolved?

Ultimately I'm just hoping they can properly identify and fix the problem because my wife loves the car except for the problem (and she's getting tired of repeatedly getting the car serviced). I've been considering trading the car in just to end the head-ache, but hopefully they can repair it instead.

Thanks!

Mark
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Old 12-26-2010, 01:23 PM   #2
nairbmik
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Yep, there are a few threads in other sections of the forum about this problem. I don't think anyone's really gotten it fixed from the dealer. I don't mind it that much, it only happens when my car is bogging in 3rd or 4th gear so I just downshift and the sound goes away.

Here is a thread about it: http://forums.nasioc.com/forums/show...ght=heatshield
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Old 12-26-2010, 02:16 PM   #3
MarkF786
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I guess it's good to hear that we're not the only one experiencing the problem. And SoA now appears to be taking notice of the problem, so hopefully there will be a permanent fix coming. And if it makes it to becoming a "recall", probably even out-of-warranty cars could still get the problem fixed for free.
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Old 12-26-2010, 03:02 PM   #4
xluben
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I highly doubt it would be a recall issue because it is not a safety related defect.

Do you know what piece of the heat shielding is coming loose? Is it the top portion, right next to the turbo? Or is it further down the downpipe? I recently replaced my downpipe and didn't notice anything loose at all, I haven't had any rattling noises at all.

The new downpipe has way less heat shielding so that should avoid rattling problems in the future. I did trim the stock turbo heat shield so it is held on by way less bolts, so hopefully I don't see rattles in the future!
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Old 12-26-2010, 03:20 PM   #5
nairbmik
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xluben View Post
I highly doubt it would be a recall issue because it is not a safety related defect.

Do you know what piece of the heat shielding is coming loose? Is it the top portion, right next to the turbo? Or is it further down the downpipe? I recently replaced my downpipe and didn't notice anything loose at all, I haven't had any rattling noises at all.

The new downpipe has way less heat shielding so that should avoid rattling problems in the future. I did trim the stock turbo heat shield so it is held on by way less bolts, so hopefully I don't see rattles in the future!
The OBS isn't a turbo model.

It probably won't be a recall, more likely just a TSB.
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Old 12-26-2010, 04:48 PM   #6
.HaVoK.
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Yes I have it. The only thing is when others have went to the dealership to get it fixed under the warranty, they diagnose it as something else every single time, which doesn't solve the issue. The only way they'll be able to diagnose it is if they take the car out for a drive because the rattle doesn't occur unless you're driving. The problem is, I'd rather not have some random mechanic drive my car around. I'd also rather not not have access to my car for a couple of days or maybe a week or two just to have them wrongly diagnose my car like they have every other person and get it back not fixed.
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Old 02-25-2011, 07:04 PM   #7
Jaylyons1
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Has anyone thought of wrapping the exhaust to solve the rattle issue? Just wondering! I would love to fix this damn rattle!
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Old 03-07-2011, 06:05 PM   #8
Jaylyons1
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Well, I got my Kartboy exhaust hangers in today. Put them on and I still get the damn rattle... However, now I get less rattle at least. Now it only rattles when I downshift or flutter the gas. Its still quite annoying though...

Anyone have any solutions yet? Maybe longer hangers?
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Old 01-04-2012, 10:46 PM   #9
Giezr
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I bought a 09 WRX Hatch a couple of weeks ago and just noticed what I believe is heat shield rattle. I'm not really familiar enough with the car yet to diagnose it; ergo, I made a crappy video so you can help!


In the video you can hear the rattle and then I let off, then get back on the gas to make it rattle again. My camera liked the road noise a lot better than the rattle.

It only happens when I'm really pushing it in a gear that's probably too high for the situation. I noticed it on the interstate in 5th gear when passing someone.

Can anyone tell if this sounds like heat shield rattle?

Is there a way to diagnose/fix this issue?

I've tried searching but it's pretty hard to find this issue when searching "wrx rattle".
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Old 01-05-2012, 12:03 AM   #10
SeeeeeYa
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The exhaust heat shields on my last four Subys have rattled. There are more than one, are large thin shaped shields held on by small bolts at the four corners, and could be termed flimsy. I never considered it a big deal. They boing if you even tap them so it's no surprise they rattle sometimes. Annoying, but harmless.

If/when I hear one rattle I just get under there and start rapping them until one rattles, then bend it a tad and rap it again... repeating until no more rattle. Done. Sometimes I've had to do this again, on the same or different ones, but in the end no more rattle. Time and effort is vanishingly small. Filling the trunk with groceries is harder.

The shields are necessary. They keep heat from the car body. They are large yet lightweight to keep vehicle weight down. The minor inconvenience of tweaking the rattle out, to me, is just a normal part of the car and other than this thread I never think twice about it.
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Old 04-06-2012, 01:31 AM   #11
chet24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SeeeeeYa
The exhaust heat shields on my last four Subys have rattled. There are more than one, are large thin shaped shields held on by small bolts at the four corners, and could be termed flimsy. I never considered it a big deal. They boing if you even tap them so it's no surprise they rattle sometimes. Annoying, but harmless.

If/when I hear one rattle I just get under there and start rapping them until one rattles, then bend it a tad and rap it again... repeating until no more rattle. Done. Sometimes I've had to do this again, on the same or different ones, but in the end no more rattle. Time and effort is vanishingly small. Filling the trunk with groceries is harder.

The shields are necessary. They keep heat from the car body. They are large yet lightweight to keep vehicle weight down. The minor inconvenience of tweaking the rattle out, to me, is just a normal part of the car and other than this thread I never think twice about it.
Any recommended spots to check? My 08 NA seems to have two different heat shield rattles. One I believe is the one described here with a low-RPM acceleration, which seems to maybe be coming from the engine bay. The other is when I am shifting and the RPMs drop around 3k. That one sounds like it is right below the passenger seat. And do you separate it or close it?

I tried to tack weld (as recommended by the dealer) the one below the passenger and it didn't help.

If anyone has any pictures of a specific piece that they found rattling, it would be helpful.
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Old 05-01-2012, 09:34 AM   #12
mabubakr
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I have this noise as well with my 2010 2.5i. It occurs at high rpms when I let off the gas pedal. Its been occurring since I leased the car new 2 years ago. I took it to the dealer when I first got the car but they didn't solve the issue. I'm guessing it may be the heat shield or the exhaust rattling but I really don't know. I'll be taking it to the dealer in a few weeks to have it checked again.
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Old 06-01-2012, 02:15 PM   #13
08 OutbackSport
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I recently just had a lot of rattling going on under my car. At first I thought it was cuz of my midpipe back exhaust I put on but found out it was the heat shield around the header/exhaust manifold due to some of the insulation or whatever it is that they put in there. Over time I guess the stuff just breaks down and rattling occurs. After adjusting and readjusting over and over I just decided to take all the shields off. Problem solved or so I hope...
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Old 07-02-2012, 07:43 PM   #14
chet24
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I'm bumping this thread again to see if anyone has a good fix. I have tried bending problem spots, the tack weld, no results. I am debating the exhaust wrap like someone suggested. Would this potentially cause heating problems? Someone has to have a good solution.
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Old 07-03-2012, 08:25 PM   #15
04ts
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Tin snips.
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