hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
60,724 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.

2002 Subaru Forester fuel system problems

fuel system problem

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2002 Subaru Forester Owner Comments

problem #4

Jan 142014

Forester 4-cyl

  • 108,000 miles


In very cold conditions. When the car is in idol or running it has a very strong gas smell around the engine and in the cabin area. I have heard the WRX and outback models have also have this problem.I was told it is the fuel line hose the connects to the clamp and contracts in severe cold and extracts when it gets warm then seals its self to the clamp. I think this is a serious issue with Subaru and it should be investigated and possible recall on the older models if it has been corrected with newer models.

- Bethlehem, PA, USA

problem #3

Jan 012006


  • 64,898 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Subaru Forester. The contact stated that the vehicle would struggle to accelerate up inclines and the check engine light illuminated while the failures occurred. The vehicle was inspected by a local mechanic. The failure was located at the fuel sensor module. The vehicle was not taken to an authorized dealer to have a diagnostic test performed. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 64,898 and the current mileage was 135,000.

- Monroe , NY, USA

problem #2

Dec 072009


  • miles
A very strong fuel smell comes into the cab of my 2002 Subaru Forester when temperatures drop below 35. I recently moved to Montana and hadn't noticed it before because portland doesn't get this cold..after researching the issue online, found out several others are having the same problem. Subaru is recalling wmx for this issue, but not Foresters.

- Missoula, MT, USA

problem #1

Feb 052009


  • 70,000 miles
After a period of cold weather (below freezing), I drove my car for about 20 minutes. After exiting the car, I smelled a strong odor of gasoline at the front of the car. During the trip when using the heat inside the vehicle, I also smelled a strong odor of gasoline and exhaust and shut off the heat. (I thought it was coming from the cars in front of me in traffic.) after leaving the car in the garage all day, I drove it to my regular mechanic to see if there might be a fuel line leak. The next day, he advised me that there had been a technical service bulletin issued by suburu about cold weather and fuel smell. He said that indeed the fuel lines in the engine compartment exhibited signs of gas leakage. When the fuel leaked, it leaked onto the engine and manifold (which I think is normally gets hot). Given the potential for fire, he replaced all of the fuel hoses in the car with new hoses and the fuel filter. On the same day, another suburu customer had the identical problem with smelling gasoline in the engine compartment, and he had to have the same repairs done. I should add that on the day I first smelled gasoline near the front of the car and when I had turned the heat on in the cab, it was about 22 degrees Fahrenheit, with a wind chill in the single digits. This is unusually cold for our area. I had just filled up my gas tank the evening before. My mileage is a little more than 70,000 miles, and the car has been very well maintained.

- Silver Spring, MD, USA

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