definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
31,000 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.

2003 Subaru Forester electrical problems

electrical problem

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2003 Subaru Forester Owner Comments

problem #1

Oct 052006

Forester 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • 31,000 miles


I recently had an uncomfortable and potentially dangerous incident with my 2003 Forester, at, of all places, the local Toyota dealership. I had stopped to discuss a service appointment. Upon leaving, my Forester would not start, but exhibited symptoms of initially fuel starvation, and then poor ignition; it ran for 1/2-1 minute, missing frequently and then would die; within a few minutes, it would not run at all, suggesting either complete fuel or ignition failure. The Toyota service department closed at 6, and their suggestion was to tow the Forester to the nearly Subaru dealership, one block away. And suggest that next time I get a rav4. The Subaru service department closed at 5:30, of course, and there were only salespeople present. Their suggestion was to also tow the car to the service department. Finally, the sales manager suggested that it might be the security system. Of course, my Forester did not have that option, but he said that he understood most of the circuitry existed, and that certain combinations of locking/unlocking the door with the key, or the door switch, could activate the ignition cutoff. He told me to shut all the doors and then lock/unlock the doors twice with the remote. I walked back, did that, and the Forester started. After driving back and thanking him, I carefully read both the owner's manual and the separate manual for the remote/security system. There is no mention of this potential problem. Luckily, this happened in daylight, within walking distance of the Subaru dealer, and there also happened to be someone there who could suggest a cure. 1) is this a known fault in the system? 2) if known (and the manager said he had heard of several cases) why is there not some description of the problem and the simple solution.

- Gainesville, FL, USA

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