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Old 02-01-2009, 07:17 PM   #2451
affinity1
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I called SOA and spoke politely with a very nice woman rep. I told her about the raw fuel smell and she told me after I make an appointment with the dealership that I should call her back to tell her when the appointment was. She wanted to speak to the service manager before I brought my car in.

When I took my car in they told me the parts had to be ordered but the repair would be taken care of under warranty. I was definitely relieved to hear that. I guess it helps to speak politely with a nice SOA rep before you get any dealership involved.
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Old 02-01-2009, 09:41 PM   #2452
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Superorb View Post
Be sure to ask them EXACTLY what work was performed. If the service writer is unaware, tell him to get the tech that did the work on your car.
They noted in their service write-up, "check for fuel leak at the engine compartment, checked both soft fuel line clamps, one at the pressure regulator loose, tightened clamp, checked lower clamp at the fuel rail -OK".

It was their description of the service that made me suspicious and prompted me to inspect their work. It was easy to see which clamps had been disturbed.
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Old 02-02-2009, 12:11 PM   #2453
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I'd inform them that the intake manifold needs to be removed to correctly perform the work. And if they wanted, you'd give them a copy of the procedure as per Subaru.
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Old 02-02-2009, 01:24 PM   #2454
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sajohnson View Post
I'm unaware of any case where simply tightening the clamps was a permanent fix. If it were, then I can't imagine SOA would be paying for the labor required to do the repair per the TSB.
I am. I know we have tested that on employee's car last year to see if it worked and it has not come back. However, all customer cars get the TSB done.

The problem is, some places might be confused and actually treat this diag/repair as if it was a NA engine.
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Old 02-02-2009, 04:50 PM   #2455
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I posted on my car experiencing this problem about a month ago (02 wrx wagon). Using the advice of people on NASIOC, i took my car to the local dealer and Grant at SOA helped me to facilitate the repair. It's now been a few weeks of having the car back and it appears to be completely fixed. Grant was also kind enough to use goodwill funds to help me with the repair cost.

Thumbs up for Grant and SOA for helping me fix the issue and thanks to the people who post their info on this website to help other subaru owners!
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Old 02-02-2009, 05:08 PM   #2456
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slapshotz View Post
I posted on my car experiencing this problem about a month ago (02 wrx wagon). Using the advice of people on NASIOC, i took my car to the local dealer and Grant at SOA helped me to facilitate the repair. It's now been a few weeks of having the car back and it appears to be completely fixed. Grant was also kind enough to use goodwill funds to help me with the repair cost.

Thumbs up for Grant and SOA for helping me fix the issue and thanks to the people who post their info on this website to help other subaru owners!
Did you goto dealer first or talk to SOA first?
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Old 02-02-2009, 05:15 PM   #2457
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Superorb View Post
Did you goto dealer first or talk to SOA first?
Called SOA first. Immediately referred to the dealer. Grant called them to tell them what to fix (sent them the tsb i think).
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Old 02-03-2009, 09:55 PM   #2458
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Quote:
Originally Posted by slapshotz View Post
It's now been a few weeks of having the car back and it appears to be completely fixed. Grant was also kind enough to use goodwill funds to help me with the repair cost.

Thumbs up for Grant and SOA for helping me fix the issue and thanks to the people who post their info on this website to help other subaru owners!
You're happy with SOA because they "helped" pay for a repair of a defective part?!?!

SOA needs to make this a recall and fast.

My car used to have the fuel smell during a cold start-up, but now it smells at stoplights and after having driven 50 miles and is obviously at operating temperature.

Can you say... (is this the fuel smell emoticon?)
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Old 02-03-2009, 10:41 PM   #2459
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bjteel View Post
You're happy with SOA because they "helped" pay for a repair of a defective part?!?!

SOA needs to make this a recall and fast.

My car used to have the fuel smell during a cold start-up, but now it smells at stoplights and after having driven 50 miles and is obviously at operating temperature.

Can you say... (is this the fuel smell emoticon?)
bjteel,

I can't remember, has your car been worked on at all to attempt to fix the fuel leak?
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Old 02-04-2009, 12:02 AM   #2460
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Originally Posted by sajohnson View Post
bjteel,

I can't remember, has your car been worked on at all to attempt to fix the fuel leak?
No dealer has diagnosed the problem...because they want $75 to tell me what many Impreza owners already know, it's the fuel line.

I should have had them look at it when I had the car in for a timing belt...that was in the summer and of course the fuel smell wasn't on my mind at that time. In the past this has only been an issue on REALLY COLD days, but this winter it is persistent...which worries me.

BTW, slapshotz, I wasn't directing that at you personally, but at SOA for not paying the entire amount for the fix. SOA knows it is a defective part and they should do the right thing for all of us.
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Old 02-04-2009, 11:57 AM   #2461
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Has anyone had this fixed at Miller Subaru in Mt Holly NJ? I just contacted SOA, they gave me a reference number and said they would called the service dept after I made my appointment but didn't say whether it would be covered. Its a 2002 wrx w/ 81k on the clock completely stock.
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Old 02-04-2009, 01:18 PM   #2462
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2008 Impreza 2.5i, 5k miles.
Noticed raw fuel smell first time couple weeks ago.
Yesterday car was fixed. Fuel injector O-ring was replaced
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Old 02-04-2009, 02:48 PM   #2463
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Originally Posted by Impregacy View Post
2008 Impreza 2.5i, 5k miles.
Noticed raw fuel smell first time couple weeks ago.
Yesterday car was fixed. Fuel injector O-ring was replaced
Uh oh... Happening on the new ones too. Way to go Subaru...
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Old 02-04-2009, 02:54 PM   #2464
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Originally Posted by Superorb View Post
Uh oh... Happening on the new ones too. Way to go Subaru...
Let's not get ahead of ourselves and push the panic button because a new car had a defective o ring.
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Old 02-04-2009, 03:32 PM   #2465
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'03 WRX, 91K miles. Have had the fuel smell in below freezing temps for the past four years, with it getting progressively worse each year. Decided to try the "really long screwdriver" approach this weekend after a trip to Harbor Freight produced a $5 set of two ridiculously long (probably 2' long) screwdrivers - one flathead & one phillips.

I seated the phillips screwdriver into the screw on the hose clamp closer to the firewall and started turning...with two fingers on the screwdriver. It was so loose I thought the screwdriver was just spinning in the head of the screw, but no, the screw was completely loose to the point of NO resistance as I tightened it. I kept turning until the screw was reasonably tight - without being able to get my hands on the hose I didn't want to bear down too hard on the screwdriver, nor did I want to chance stripping the head of the screw.

At that point I noticed that the forward hose clamp had the screw head facing downwards - are they all like that or has mine just rotated around from being so loose? Who knows, but after two nights of sub-freezing temps I have had no fuel smell after tightening the rear hose clamp. It's supposed to get down to 13F here tonight, so that should be the acid test of this "fix", for my car at least...

I will post back if the smell returns, but so far it seems that tightening the screw may be at least a temporary solution.
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Old 02-04-2009, 03:57 PM   #2466
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Well about a month ago I purchased a used '02 WRX. It had 150,000 miles on it. You would have thought the previous owner would have noticed the problem and got concerned. I had no idea of this problem until reading this thread and gaining more knowledge about the problem.

About 2 days after I purchased the car, I was warming the car up before driving. I got in the car and noticed a terribly strong raw fuel smell. I had no idea what the hell was going on. I've read through this thread and it sucks so bad that this many people are having the same problem.

I spoke with my local Subaru dealership and they mentioned that it was going to cost around $300 to fix this problem. It entails around 3 hours labor and replacing two faulty hoses.

I really don't wanna dump $300 on this fix, but this smell drives me nuts.

Should I really worry about getting this problem fixed or is it something that you can live with? I would assume that this problem entails more than just a fuel smell and I don't want to cause any additional damage to the engine or anything else.
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Old 02-04-2009, 04:28 PM   #2467
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Has anyone seen this on an 04 wrx?
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Old 02-04-2009, 07:30 PM   #2468
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bjteel View Post
No dealer has diagnosed the problem...because they want $75 to tell me what many Impreza owners already know, it's the fuel line.

I should have had them look at it when I had the car in for a timing belt...that was in the summer and of course the fuel smell wasn't on my mind at that time. In the past this has only been an issue on REALLY COLD days, but this winter it is persistent...which worries me.

BTW, slapshotz, I wasn't directing that at you personally, but at SOA for not paying the entire amount for the fix. SOA knows it is a defective part and they should do the right thing for all of us.
FWIW: The tech at the dealer I took my car to (Sharrett in Hagerstown, MD) simply looked under the hood and said, "Yep, fuel line leak". (Actually, they prefer the term 'seepage'. Sounds better I suppose).

It took all of about 1 minute. No charge.
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Old 02-04-2009, 07:31 PM   #2469
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cable911 View Post
Has anyone seen this on an 04 wrx?
There have been several reports of the same problem on later model WRXs.

Try an advanced search of this thread for '04 or 2004.
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Old 02-04-2009, 07:42 PM   #2470
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scion View Post
Has anyone had this fixed at Miller Subaru in Mt Holly NJ? I just contacted SOA, they gave me a reference number and said they would called the service dept after I made my appointment but didn't say whether it would be covered. Its a 2002 wrx w/ 81k on the clock completely stock.
It shouldn't matter which dealer you go to, it should be covered 100%, like most others have been.

That said, it actually does seem to make a difference which dealer you go to. If you read through the posts here you'll see that some people have gotten VIP treatment (no hassles, free loaner car) while others have gotten severely jerked around. Apparently, some dealers like warranty work more than others.

My guess is, if a person is unlucky enough to take their car to a dealer that wants SOA to pay their regular book time and hourly rate (rather than the typical SOA warranty rate) -- they've got a problem. After all, any 2002 is technically out of warranty (unless this could be considered an emissions system repair). The dealer is under no obligation to do the work for a reduced rate. This is my theory as to why WRX owners are reporting such wildly different experiences.
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Old 02-04-2009, 07:53 PM   #2471
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Quote:
Originally Posted by topshark04 View Post
Well about a month ago I purchased a used '02 WRX. It had 150,000 miles on it. You would have thought the previous owner would have noticed the problem and got concerned. I had no idea of this problem until reading this thread and gaining more knowledge about the problem.

About 2 days after I purchased the car, I was warming the car up before driving. I got in the car and noticed a terribly strong raw fuel smell. I had no idea what the hell was going on. I've read through this thread and it sucks so bad that this many people are having the same problem.

I spoke with my local Subaru dealership and they mentioned that it was going to cost around $300 to fix this problem. It entails around 3 hours labor and replacing two faulty hoses.

I really don't wanna dump $300 on this fix, but this smell drives me nuts.

Should I really worry about getting this problem fixed or is it something that you can live with? I would assume that this problem entails more than just a fuel smell and I don't want to cause any additional damage to the engine or anything else.
SOA seems to be getting better about paying 100% of the cost of this repair -- as they should since it is a design defect which they've known about since sometime before they issued the TSB back in April of 2003.

Call them and get a file/case #. They will want you to take your car to the dealer to have them confirm that your fuel leak problem is the one referred to in the TSB (it almsot certainly is).

If you were to pay for it yourself (you shouldn't) the quote from your dealer sounds low. Most people report costs of about $475 to $650+. That makes me wonder if they are planning to do the work called for in the TSB.
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Old 02-04-2009, 08:36 PM   #2472
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sajohnson View Post
It shouldn't matter which dealer you go to, it should be covered 100%, like most others have been.
Not true. If the cars out of warranty, it is up to SOA, not the dealer to offer assistance and they decide if it will be covered 100%, 50% or whatever. This doesn't mean the dealer can't offer input to SOA.

Quote:
That said, it actually does seem to make a difference which dealer you go to. If you read through the posts here you'll see that some people have gotten VIP treatment (no hassles, free loaner car) while others have gotten severely jerked around. Apparently, some dealers like warranty work more than others.
That all depends on a few things. Does the dealer have loaner cars or not. If they don't have loaner cars, will they be willing eat the cost to put a customer into a rental car being the repairs take less than 1 day to complete. SOA doesn't pay the rental, nor is it authorized if the repair is less than 1 day. So that comes down to the dealer. Is the customer a loyal service customer and do they want to eat a rental cost of $40-$50.

The fact is unless SOA agree's to cover the repairs(i.e they tell the dealer they will pay for the repairs under warranty for the customer), the dealer is not going to make a repair on the car until someone pays them to. They want to make sure they get paid to do the work and if SOA doesn't tell them they will, they are not going to do it. Nobody works for free.



Quote:
My guess is, if a person is unlucky enough to take their car to a dealer that wants SOA to pay their regular book time and hourly rate (rather than the typical SOA warranty rate) -- they've got a problem. After all, any 2002 is technically out of warranty (unless this could be considered an emissions system repair). The dealer is under no obligation to do the work for a reduced rate. This is my theory as to why WRX owners are reporting such wildly different experiences.
If SOA doesn't tell the dealer to warranty the repair, then it is customer pay and the customer pays for the repair if they authorize it(even if SOA offers to reimburse them after the repairs). If SOA agrees to warranty it, then it is treated like a warranty repair.

It is not an emissions concern being it is not the ECU nor is it a catalytic converter. Those are the only two items that fall under the Federal Emissions warranty.

Like I have mentioned, when it comes to goodwill, which means this is not being covered under warranty and therefore it is a case by case basis, it will depend on the individual person from SOA who is handling it and the situation. When I have a customer that comes in with one, has informed me they have spoke with SOA, I handle it a different way that I will not disclose.
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Old 02-04-2009, 10:17 PM   #2473
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Originally Posted by blackfang View Post
Not true. If the cars out of warranty, it is up to SOA, not the dealer to offer assistance and they decide if it will be covered 100%, 50% or whatever. This doesn't mean the dealer can't offer input to SOA..
Agreed. I've never said the dealers should be on the hook for this. I'm not sure where you got that idea. It's a mfr defect. I also never said the dealer can't offer input to SOA. I'm not sure where you're coming from.

Quote:
Originally Posted by blackfang View Post
That all depends on a few things. Does the dealer have loaner cars or not. If they don't have loaner cars, will they be willing eat the cost to put a customer into a rental car being the repairs take less than 1 day to complete. SOA doesn't pay the rental, nor is it authorized if the repair is less than 1 day. So that comes down to the dealer. Is the customer a loyal service customer and do they want to eat a rental cost of $40-$50..
Again, all I'm saying is that some dealers clearly treat their customers better than others -- for a variety of reasons. One of which may be how they feel about warranty repairs.

In my case the dealer had my car for an entire WEEK. Not once was I asked if I needed/wanted a loaner. From what you're saying it should have been authorized by SOA. No big deal in my case as my wife and I have an extra car -- my point is that some customers are treated a lot differently than others.

Quote:
Originally Posted by blackfang View Post
The fact is unless SOA agree's to cover the repairs(i.e they tell the dealer they will pay for the repairs under warranty for the customer), the dealer is not going to make a repair on the car until someone pays them to. They want to make sure they get paid to do the work and if SOA doesn't tell them they will, they are not going to do it. Nobody works for free..
Agreed. I've never suggested that anyone work for free -- only that SOA should step up, do the right thing, and agree up front to warranty this repair for any vehicle that needs it

Quote:
Originally Posted by blackfang View Post
If SOA doesn't tell the dealer to warranty the repair, then it is customer pay and the customer pays for the repair if they authorize it(even if SOA offers to reimburse them after the repairs). If SOA agrees to warranty it, then it is treated like a warranty repair..
Makes sense to me...

Quote:
Originally Posted by blackfang View Post
It is not an emissions concern being it is not the ECU nor is it a catalytic converter. Those are the only two items that fall under the Federal Emissions warranty..
I'll take your word for it, but that's pretty lame -- since there are all sorts of components and failures that affect emissions. It would be interesting to know the cumulative amount of raw hydrocarbons released into the atmosphere from the thousands (or tens of thousands??) of WRXs with this fuel leak. It's got to be an outrageous amount.

But hey, if it's not covered, and the EPA doesn't care, and the NHTSA doesn't care, why should SOA?

Quote:
Originally Posted by blackfang View Post
Like I have mentioned, when it comes to goodwill, which means this is not being covered under warranty and therefore it is a case by case basis, it will depend on the individual person from SOA who is handling it and the situation. When I have a customer that comes in with one, has informed me they have spoke with SOA, I handle it a different way that I will not disclose.
It may 'depend on the individual person from SOA who is handling it', but it shouldn't. That's ridiculous. This should have been the subject of a recall YEARS ago. Apparently the NHTSA thinks raw fuel spraying onto an engine is no problem and the EPA isn't concerned about raw gasoline fumes so SOA has been left to do a sort of "silent recall". Whatever the case, it seems as though SOA is beginning to pay for this repair 100% without too much run-around. That's good, but they should have a consistent policy. If they are going to do the right thing then do it -- it shouldn't be left up to an SOA customer service rep and whether or not they're having a bad day!

Let me repeat, I'm on the dealers' side here. At least I realize that correcting this problem is SOA's responsibility, not theirs. If you read my posts so far you'll see that almost all of criticism has been directed at SOA.
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Old 02-04-2009, 10:55 PM   #2474
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Just got my fuel smell fixed today so I thought I would share my experience.

First I contacted SOA via email telling them about my problem and about getting it covered. They first told me my car is way out of warranty for time and mileage. I have 103,000 miles, and I will have to take it to a dealer to diagnose it and then we will see what assistance they may be able to do. So I took it to the dealer, notified SOA that I was, and then SOA contacted the dealer after the disgnosis, and then emailed me back saying as a one time goodwill offer they will cover the repair. I just have to fax them a receipt after I pay for it. It was pretty seemless, and I didn't have to deal with the dealer, and didn't really have to deal much with SOA, they seemed like they knew all about this and will cover it if anyone contacts them asking about getting it covered.
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Old 02-04-2009, 11:14 PM   #2475
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Originally Posted by sajohnson View Post
Agreed. I've never said the dealers should be on the hook for this. I'm not sure where you got that idea. It's a mfr defect. I also never said the dealer can't offer input to SOA. I'm not sure where you're coming from.
Maybe I took your post out of context then. Use mine to back yours up then.



Quote:
Again, all I'm saying is that some dealers clearly treat their customers better than others -- for a variety of reasons. One of which may be how they feel about warranty repairs.

In my case the dealer had my car for an entire WEEK. Not once was I asked if I needed/wanted a loaner. From what you're saying it should have been authorized by SOA. No big deal in my case as my wife and I have an extra car -- my point is that some customers are treated a lot differently than others.
Wow!! I don't know why it took them that long. I usually have them done in a day when we have the parts in.

I am saying is that if your repairs take more than 24 hours to complete, then SOA authorizes rental. Maybe your dealer wasn't sure or never explored that route.

Quote:
I'll take your word for it, but that's pretty lame -- since there are all sorts of components and failures that affect emissions. It would be interesting to know the cumulative amount of raw hydrocarbons released into the atmosphere from the thousands (or tens of thousands??) of WRXs with this fuel leak. It's got to be an outrageous amount.

But hey, if it's not covered, and the EPA doesn't care, and the NHTSA doesn't care, why should SOA?


Lame? Hardly. A fuel line is not designed to eliminate hydrocarbons and perform the same function as a catalytic converter. It is designed to carry fuel from the fuel tank to the engine. There is a difference between a component that is built and design to reduce pollutants and is mandated by federal emissions laws into the air(converters) and a component that is not designed to do that but fails. In that case, the entire engine could possibly be considered federal emissions.


Quote:
It may 'depend on the individual person from SOA who is handling it', but it shouldn't. That's ridiculous. This should have been the subject of a recall YEARS ago. Apparently the NHTSA thinks raw fuel spraying onto an engine is no problem and the EPA isn't concerned about raw gasoline fumes so SOA has been left to do a sort of "silent recall".


What it should of been and what it is now are two different things and are "what if's"

Quote:
Whatever the case, it seems as though SOA is beginning to pay for this repair 100% without too much run-around. That's good, but they should have a consistent policy. If they are going to do the right thing then do it -- it shouldn't be left up to an SOA customer service rep and whether or not they're having a bad day!
Yes they are and have been in my experience(which may not reflect those on here). You can't have a consistent policy on "goodwill" outside of warranty that is based on a case by case basis. There are many factors that even I don't know about possibly involved.
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