2011 Subaru Forester electrical NHTSA complaints: Electrical System

NHTSA — Electrical System Problems


really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
39,164 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 Forester electrical problems

electrical problem

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2011 Subaru Forester Owner Comments

problem #6

Feb 192015

Forester 4-cyl

  • miles


2011 Subaru Forester. Consumer writes in regards to battery replacement and key reprogramming repair costs. The consumer stated the vehicle would crank and then stop.

- Broken Arrow, OK, USA

problem #5

Sep 082014


  • 81,743 miles
My car was stopped at a red light behind at least 2 other cars at around 4:45 P.M. on 9-8-14. My engine suddenly started racing and pulling my car toward the car sitting in front of mine. I already had my foot on the brake because I was stopped. I pressed even harder on the brake as the car took off out of my control. The brakes stopped working and my car crashed into the rear of the vehicle in front of mine.

- Timonium, MD, USA

problem #4

Aug 142014

Forester 4-cyl

  • 76,000 miles
I was driving down to queens to see my wife's family and as soon as I passed a truck I heard something hit my car. As soon as I got into long island, I heard the engine revving as if it were a diesel engine. I stopped at a shop and they listened to it and said that it is an internal issue in the engine and not to drive it. They helped me out by finding the closest dealership and they called. The guy from the shop called Subaru and they told him to call the tow truck to get the vehicle towed to their shop. That was messed up, have a non party call for a tow?? then the guy taking my order, didn't give me a receipt nor my copies of the services from the past. I have extended warranty which I am entitled to a rental car but was stuck without a vehicle and needed a vehicle to get back to work which I live 3-1/2 hours away from the shop and now I am stuck paying for tolls and have a hold on my credit card because of Subaru. On Friday I was told that they would call, I had to call because they never called me back. Then they tell me that it is the engine and they have to drop the oil pan on Monday. The worst thing is that I had reported engine problems at 47,000 miles which I have it documented from the dealership and they said that it was nothing.... just like all of the electrical problems I had with my window in the past... and check engine light coming on in the past.... now after this major issue they want more paperwork... this is just messed up.

- Albany, NY, USA

problem #3

Apr 022014


  • 27,000 miles


My wife's car locked itself with keys and baby inside on two occasions. The first time was in winter (don't remember the date) and our baby was locked in the cold car for more than an hour while we waited for aaa. My wife thought she had somehow kneeled on the key/remote in her handbag while putting the baby in his car seat. Since then she has taken care not to touch the key (and remote) before she gets in the car to drive. Today she placed the key/remote on the front seat, then put the baby in the car seat (in back), closed the back door, and the car locked itself with her outside and the baby inside. Aaa arrived quickly and opened the car. The aaa guy said he has had more Subaru with drivers locked out than any other make. I also spoke to the service department of the Subaru dealer who sold us the car about this incident, and I was told that this model year had experienced this problem fairly often, and that the problem had been fixed in subsequent models. I have reported this incident to Subaru Corp customer service--their case number is [xxx]. information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Albany, NY, USA

problem #2

May 172013

Forester 4-cyl

  • 28,000 miles
Pulled into a parking space at a local train station. Car was stopped and shut off. Not sure if keys were in ignition or not. When reaching over to get handbag and tote I heard the engine rev up very suddenly and loudly, car jumped 6" curb and propelled forward about two feet when right front bumper hit tree and car stopped. Air bags did not deploy and I was not injured. Before I even knew about this website I told the adjuster and the dealership that the car took off on its own. The only reaction I got was strange looks. Told by body shop that car was "totally fixable" within two weeks. $7,000 in body work 3 weeks later was told engine was "running rough" and it was sent to Subaru dealer where purchased. Told that engine had to be rebuilt - machining head; valve replacement; new gaskets etc. Five weeks later Subaru still has my car. About 3 weeks ago prior to knowing about this website and seeing how many other people have reported this problem I ordered a new Subaru using this one as a trade in. Subaru won't give me a trade in value until car is fixed and they have had the car five weeks and still haven't fixed it. I live in the suburbs am 62 years old and I've been taking trains, buses, my bike and walking to get to work and to do everyday errands. No offer of a loaner from Subaru although I've asked twice. Contacted corporate Subaru and reported what I read on this website and my own experience and was told that it would be hard to prove. Last week corporate said they would try to offer assistance with the purchase of the new car in the way of loyalty incentive. As of today I have no car, no idea when or if the old one will be fixed, how much it will be worth as a trade in, a new car that I can't have and that has no definitive price, and a lot of talk but no action from the dealership and corporate Subaru.

- Bellmore, NY, USA

problem #1

Feb 012012

Forester 4-cyl

  • 22,241 miles
I am being told by the manufacturer that the engine failed due to lack of oil changes. I changed the oil on 7/6/11 at 10,639 miles. The engine then failed at 22241 on 2/1/12. The engine holds 5.5 quarts of oil but per the manufacturer had none in it at the engine failure. How does a new vehicle burn 5.5 quarts of oil in 11602 miles" there was also no warning light of any kind to tell me that the engine oil was low. The manufacturer stated that the oil level had to be lower than 2 P.S.I for the light to go off and warn me and at that point the engine would already be damaged. I got no advance warning that there was a problem with my engine or the oil level. The engine simply stopped working. I am being told that I have to foot the bill in excess of $9500 for a new engine. How can a manufacturer have an engine that does not warn the consumer that there may be a problem? I am very puzzled by this and the fact the Subaru dealership who said the warranty was voided is the same dealership charging me exorbitant rates for a new motor" please help or give me a suggestion.

- Noblesville, IN, USA

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