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3.6

definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
35,662 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2011 Subaru Outback lights problems

lights problem

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2011 Subaru Outback Owner Comments (Page 4 of 5)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #23

Mar 312014

Outback

  • 67,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Both of my headlights went out at the same time. High beams, fog lights still work. Tried replacing the bulbs with gloved hands and still not working. I have seen many other complaints on online forums about the same thing. Could be a wiring or fuse issue?

- Saint Louis, MO, USA

problem #22

Aug 012011

Outback

  • miles
Low beam headlight bulbs burn out approximately every 3 months requiring expensive replacements. Combined with an overly difficult access to replace them, it's effectively an extortion scheme by Subaru to force you to the dealership.

- Spokane Valley, WA, USA

problem #21

Nov 162011

Outback 4-cyl

  • 10,000 miles
I have replaced six headlight bulbs since I bought the car in July 2011. I don't even drive that much after dark. I don't use the auto headlight feature either.

- Honey Brook, PA, USA

problem #20

Oct 012013

Outback

  • 32,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

It is now three headlights in 24 months have burnt out. I would just like to know what the issue is with my car.

- Englewood, CO, USA

problem #19

Jun 152013

Outback 4-cyl

  • 4,200 miles
Passenger side headlight has burnt out 6 times; Subaru denies any underlying issues, keep replacing the headlight; no more warranty as this point; main concerns are safety and nuisance.

- Holland, MI, USA

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problem #18

Jan 012014

Outback 4-cyl

  • 40,718 miles
Low beam headlights only illuminate road to about 15 feet in front of car. Headlights were then adjusted by Subaru dealer who stated they were at the max height. Lights now illuminate to about 25 feet in front of car. Extremely poor visibility at night. Subaru dealer said there is nothing more he can do.

- Thetford Center, VT, USA

problem #17

Mar 082012

Outback

  • 36,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

I have to replace the low beam head lights all the time ( 6 times since buying car) driver side 4 times passenger side 2 times.

- Harlowton, MT, USA

problem #16

Nov 012012

Outback 4-cyl

  • 42,000 miles
We are experiencing chronic headlight, taillight and brake light burn out issues. We have had the right headlight replaced twice and the left headlight replaced once as well as the taillight and break lights replaced once since November of 2012. We do not live on a bumpy road or have any other odd driving conditions. We drive our car only on normal paved roads in a Suburban environment. Our Subaru dealer has not been able to resolve this problem. We believe this is a major safety issue as we never know when the lights are going to burn out.

- El Dorado Hills, CA, USA

problem #15

Jun 042013

Outback 4-cyl

  • 14,900 miles
The passenger's-side low beam headlight burned out a week ago and was replaced by the dealer. One week later, the driver's-side low beam headlight burned out. The car only has 15,000 miles presently. The dealer reports that this is a common occurrence in late-model Outbacks. I live in Alaska where the use of headlights is mandatory on some roads. Frequent and unanticipated loss of the headlights is a safety hazard as well as costly.

- Anchorage, AK, USA

problem #14

Dec 072011

Outback

  • 5,000 miles
I purchased my vehicle new from dealer 18 months ago my vehicle requires a low beam bulb replacement every 6 weeks to 3 months. I have been pulled over by the police on numerous occasions due to this defect. Poor access for headlight replacement is another safety issue that compounds this problem. I've always kept a replacement headlight in my previous cars for such the rare occasion that a bulb burned out I could easily pull over and in 2-3 minutes be back on the road with functioning lights. I have never owned a vehicle that required laying on the ground, having to remove the inner fender and likely if you aren't a petite 5 foot tall individual such as myself you may also have to remove the tire to access a headlight. This is a serious safety issue and the dealership telling me there are no service bulletins pertaining to such a problem. All they(Subaru dealer) can do is give me a new bulb and that I am no longer under warranty for a bulb if anyone other than they (Subaru dealer)installs the bulbs. Ridiculous! I feel a greater concern about the bulb burnout shortout or whatever it is issue due to the fact that you just can't fix it along side the road if you had to. All car headlights should be easy to get to and replace they are just that important. Especially when a car has really questionably operating headlights Subaru.

- Sykesville, MD, USA

problem #13

Dec 072011

Outback

  • 5,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

I purchased my vehicle new from dealer 18 months ago my vehicle requires a low beam bulb replacement every 6 weeks to 3 months. I have been pulled over by the police on numerous occasions due to this defect. Poor access for headlight replacement is another safety issue that compounds this problem. I always leap a replacement headlight in my previous cars for such the rare occasion that a bulb burned out I could easily pull over and in 2-3 minutes be back on the road with functioning lights. I have never owned a vehicle that required laying on the ground, having to remove the inner fender and likely if you aren't a petite 5 foot tall individual such as myself you may also have to remove the tire to access a headlight. This is a serious safety issue and the dealership telling me there are no service bulletins pertaining to such a problem. All they(Subaru dealer) can do is give me a new bulb and that I am no longer under warranty for a bulb if anyone other than they (Subaru dealer)installs the bulbs. Ridiculous! I feel more concerned about the bulb burnout shortout or whatever it is issue due to the fact that you just can't fix it along side the road if you had to.

- Sykesville, MD, USA

problem #12

Jan 072013

Outback 6-cyl

  • 28,000 miles
Driver side low beam headlight failed at about 29,000 miles. Passenger side low beam headlight failed at ~32,000 miles (roughly 3 months time elapsed between events).

- Mchenry, IL, USA

problem #11

Nov 012012

Outback 4-cyl

  • 50,000 miles
The car's headlights burn out at a very frequent rate. Replacing them is very inconvenient and time consuming since you have to remove the wheels in order to get access. Dealer charges $100 to replace. Something must be wrong with the electrical system since my other Subaru has needed only one replacement since 2004.

- Reading, PA, USA

problem #10

Nov 012012

Outback 4-cyl

  • 60,000 miles
I have now replaced 3 low beam light bulbs in my car within the last 6 months. Two on the left and one on the right. This is a huge safety issue. Bulbs should not burn out this quickly and repeatedly.

- Baker City, OR, USA

problem #9

Dec 032012

Outback

  • miles
Driver side headlamp burned out, replaced at dealership and 12 weeks later the passenger side headlamp burned out. I am shocked that a vehicle with only 20,000 miles would already have two headlamps burn out within weeks of each other. Dealership denies any knowledge of a problem with headlamps even though internet is flooded with similar complaints.

- Woodbury, MN, USA

problem #8

Jul 012011

Outback 4-cyl

  • 10,000 miles
Subaru Outback low beam headlights going out is a dangerous safety issue. Purchased 2011 Outback in Nov 2010. July 2011 driver side low beam headlight replaced at dealer. Nov 2011 passenger side low beam headlight replaced at dealer. July 2012 driver side low beam headlight replaced at dealer. Dealer checked out lighting system and found no problems. Dec 2012 both low beam headlights out. Called Subaru corporate and they said they had no reports of this problem (even though there are lots of discussions online). Replaced at local mechanic because it was 17 degrees out and these bulbs are not easy or cheap to change (my cost was $40+ for 2 bulbs plus $38 for mechanic install). Identified that dealer bulbs removed were philips. Replaced with sylvania. March 2013 driver side low beam headlight out again. Called corporate again. They suggested taking to local dealer (45 minutes away) to have them check the car out. Corporate and dealer are sorry to hear of problem and will change the bulb... but that doesn't eliminate the safety issue. In addition, it doesn't take care of the hassle or the costs. If you need more examples of this same problem (to prove it is not just my car), check out these other cases listed on this NHTSA website: 2011 ------------------------- date of incident: 03/01/2013 NHTSA id number: 10500919 date of incident: 05/03/2012 NHTSA id number: 10487940 date of incident: 09/13/2012 NHTSA id number: 10475296 date of incident: 08/17/2012 NHTSA id number: 10471366 2010 ---------------------------- date of incident: 11/01/2011 NHTSA id number: 10498055 date of incident: 10/01/2010 NHTSA id number: 10486749.

- Delaware, OH, USA

problem #7

Mar 012013

Outback 4-cyl

  • 15,000 miles
The lowbeam headlamps on this vehicle have an unusually short lifespan. On several occasions, both driver and passenger side headlamps have failed within a few days of one another leading to an unsafe vehicle condition. The dealer and Subaru have refused to perform free diagnostic tests to determine the cause of the headlamp failures and short lifespan.

- Lovettsville, VA, USA

problem #6

May 032012

Outback 4-cyl

  • 22,345 miles
The low beam headlights have burned out twice. The car is a 2011 Subaru Outback, and it has less than 30,000 miles on it. The headlight setting is not kept on the "auto" setting. (some claim using the auto setting causes the lights to switch on-and-off more causing additional wear to the headlight.) the headlights were installed by a dealer, so it can be assumed they were installed to correct Subaru specifications. The commute to and from work every day is a sinuous, tree-lined road, with the occasional deer crossing. During this time of year, the commute to and from work is in the dark. Having one or both headlights burn out is a safety issue; driving with the high-beams on just to see the road is also a safety issue and is illegal.

- Blue Bell, PA, USA

problem #5

Sep 132012

Outback 4-cyl

  • 53,000 miles
I am on my third set of headlight bulbs car is 23 months old and bulbs keep burning out. Never had a problem like this. Many other owners have the same issue and no resolution has been found. This is the low beam bulbs that burn out. Not at the same time usually within 2-4 weeks of each other.

- Woodbridge, CT, USA

problem #4

Aug 172012

Outback 4-cyl

  • 23,000 miles
I keep replacing headlight bulbs and they keep burning out Friday we had to drive a mountain road with fog lights only because they both burned out. There must be a problem as it is happening all to often.

- Anza , CA, USA

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