AVAILABLE 24/7. HABLAMOS ESPAÑOL

Cali Lemon Lawyers Logo

WE GET YOU PAID

FAST & EASY 🍋


Subaru Outback Issues

Subaru Outback Dead Battery Issue & Settlement Information

|

Many 2016-2022 Subaru Outback, Forester, Legacy and WRX owners have experienced a dead battery issue in their cars. If you’re having a similar problem with your vehicle, you may be entitled to compensation under the lemon law.

Unfortunately, jumper cables and a battery charger have become two essential items that Subaru drivers cannot leave home without.

According to a lawsuit filed against Subaru, the 2019 to 2020 Subaru Ascent and 2016 to 2020 Subaru Outback vehicles feature batteries with insufficient capacity to run the electrical systems when these vehicles have been switched off.

Tomasian versus Subaru and Dalen versus Subaru are two of the many cases filed over the Subaru battery troubles.

As of May 2022, a preliminary settlement was been reached between Subaru and the plaintiffs. The settlement includes the compensation for the following vehicles:

  • 2015-2020 Subaru Outback
  • 2015-2020 Subaru Forester
  • 2015-2020 Subaru Legacy
  • 2015-2020 Subaru WRX

In this article, we will discuss the car battery drain issues in greater detail, the settlement, and why battery failure poses such a great danger to motorists and vehicle occupants.

If you’ve purchased or leased a defective 2016-2022 Subaru in California and have opted out of the lawsuit, we can help you receive compensation at no cost to you. Contact Cali Lemon Lawyers today!

Why Your Subaru Outback Has A Dead Battery Issue

dead battery issueUpon further investigation, it was determined that Subaru Outback vehicles have been experiencing dead battery issues because of problems with the control area network or Controller Area Network (CAN). A CAN system facilitates communication between electrical components, sensors, actuators, and microcontrollers.

When the car is in motion, the system is sufficiently powered. However, when switched off, it should go into a sleep state. However, as many class-action lawsuits claim, this device lacks an adequate sleep mode and has programming flaws that prevent it from saving power correctly.

As a result, battery drain occurs because electrical system continues to consume power from the OEM battery. When the vehicle owner returns to their Outback, there isn’t sufficient power to start the engine.

Dead Battery Problems Are Not Only Inconvenient, They’re Dangerous

Having a dead battery effectively means drivers do not have access to their vehicles in the event of an emergency. You could also be left stranded in a random area where you parked your car, not to mention the inconvenience of having to jump-start your car every time you need to go somewhere!

We’ve listed the most common complaints with Subaru Outback batteries below.

2016 Subaru Outback: Electrical System Drained Batteries

battery drain issue SubaruA number of car owners have expressed their disdain regarding recurring issues with a dead battery. One owner indicated that he had started experiencing issues with his vehicle even though it was a new vehicle with a new battery.

He indicated that if he did not use his vehicle after three to four days, he would find that his Subaru battery was dead when he tried to start the car again.

Another owner of a 2016 Subaru indicated that he was asked to buy a new battery for $150, only to find that he was having the same issue. He then took the vehicle to a mechanic who found nothing wrong, but he had to pay $300 for the assessment.

2017 Subaru Outback Battery Problems Also Trending

Subaru batteries are made to last between three and five years, depending on how often you drive and your driving habits. However, you shouldn’t be seeing issues with a new battery!

According to disgruntled drivers, the 2017 model Subaru Outback has a battery that constantly discharges.

One user indicated that his battery died in both cold and warm months of the year, so it doesn’t appear to have anything to do with the climate. This means that this issue is likely a manufacturing defect warranting filing a lemon law claim.

The 2017 model has since been trending for its dead battery issues as many Subaru owners expressed their concern.

2018 Subaru Outback Dead Battery Issue

While battery problems with older models aren’t surprising, the fact that the owners of newer models have the same OEM battery issues is a clear indication that something is very wrong with these vehicles.

Drivers of the 2018 Subaru Outback indicated that they had approximately three to five breakdowns per month. One 80+ year-old driver indicated that he didn’t drive his car every day, but needed a reliable car that he wouldn’t need to jump start to use.

Another user complained about having to replace his battery because the dealer wasn’t being fair and never offered a solution to his problems.

2019 Subaru Outback: More Dead Battery Troubles for Subaru Drivers

2018 Subaru battery problemMany 2019 Subaru Outback owners have experienced the same battery trouble warranting lemon law compensation. Dealers have even told Subaru Outback owners that drained batteries were normal in Subaru vehicles if they were left unused for a few days. That’s not right! One driver claimed to have had his batteries replaced three times without any solution in sight.

This has also led frustrated new vehicle owners to seek compensation.

More Of The Same With The 2020 Subaru Outback

Subaru battery problemsYou would think that after so many years of releasing Subaru models with battery drain issues, Subaru would have gotten its act together and released Subaru Outbacks that had a new and improved system.

Sadly, this was not the case, as more drivers have voiced their dismay about the 2020 Subaru Outback. Like previous models, owners complained that their battery died, even though their vehicles were new.

A driver indicated that a possible solution would be to install a heavy-duty battery, which would cost $280.

What Has Subaru Done About These Complaints?

Subaru Outback owners dealing with battery drain problems are frustrated with Subaru because it has never been upfront about the issue or offered a recall to fix the problem.

Occasionally the company offers a replacement of the battery, but the underlying problem has seemingly still not been addressed. Subaru continues to dismiss any allegations that there is anything wrong with the Subaru Outback models, despite thousands of accounts from drivers who have experienced the battery issue.

Subaru Battery Class Action Lawsuit Settlement

As mentioned, several Subaru drivers filed lawsuits against Subaru for battery troubles. These suits have been consolidated into one class-action lawsuit against Subaru.

The lawsuit argues that 2016-2022 Subaru owners constantly need to jump-start their depleted batteries and keep charging them to ensure that their vehicles are running.

Moreover, according to the lawsuit, drivers have been forced them to seek alternate transportation, buy jumper cables, and spend their money on battery chargers.

The class action claimed that even when the car manufacturer replaces these car batteries under warranty, they experience the same drain issues as the original batteries. Rightfully so, drivers claimed that the manufacturer had a responsibility to inform them of the issues with the battery prior to the purchase.

As a result, customers who bought a new or used vehicle from a Subaru dealership may be eligible for compensation in excess of the amounts they paid for related expenses, according to the company’s battery drain lawsuit settlement. Battery replacements and/or battery testing and diagnosis done by a Subaru dealer are examples of eligible expenses, as are towing costs incurred outside of the convenience network.

If you are a customer whose vehicle was serviced at a third-party repair facility and paid for things like battery replacements or towing services, you may also be eligible for reimbursement.

The settlement stated that, “Recoverable expenses include, without limitation, hotel expenses, meals and equipment purchased to sustain battery operation, and other expenses reasonably related to the battery failure. A Settlement Class Member who qualifies for the cash payments under this section will also be entitled to receive a $140 single-use Subaru service voucher, which will remain valid for one year from the date the claim is approved.”

The thirteen named plaintiffs in the case will each receive $4,000 dollars, and the lawyers who represented them will get over $4 million.

How Did Subaru Respond to the Lawsuit?

Subaru lawsuitInstead of admitting that there is a battery drain problem with its Subaru Outback vehicles, Subaru chose to file a motion to dismiss the class-action suits.

Lack of Subject Matter

In its request to dismiss the lawsuit, Subaru stated that prevailing law demands that the claims be dismissed for lack of subject matter jurisdiction or for the failure to establish a clear case.

Some Plaintiffs Dismissed Their Claims

It further pointed out that four plaintiffs, including Dalen and Tomasian from the aforementioned cases, had willingly dropped their complaints since the filing of the consolidated class-action lawsuit.

A Vague and Inconsistent Claim

According to Subaru attorneys, the lawsuit is a vague and inconsistent pleading that files several claims against a number of defendants without defining which defendants are liable for which actions or which defendants the lawsuit has been brought against.

The plaintiffs, according to the court, lack the capacity to pursue damages for Subaru models they never owned or leased and may only pursue claims connected to Subaru cars they own.

Dismissal Based on Jurisdictional Restrictions

Subaru also argued that non-New Jersey claimants’ claims brought under New Jersey law must be rejected and that the court should reject the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act claims due to restrictions based on jurisdictions.

How Should You Respond as a Subaru Outback Owner?

Suppose you own a Subaru Outback affected by these battery troubles. You’re probably wondering whether you should support this class-action lawsuit. Joining the class action lawsuit may not be the best option. Filing a lemon law claim could help you receive a much more favorable settlement.

By hiring a lemon lawyer, you can file your own lawsuit to hold Subaru liable for the problems you experienced because of the battery.

Need a Lemon Law Attorney? Cali Lemon Lawyers Can Help!

If you need a lemon lawyer, we can help! Cali Lemon Lawyers by Prestige Legal Solutions, P.C. has extensive experience providing aggressive representation against Subaru.  Whether your car was recently purchased new or used, if it’s a lemon, we will not stop fighting until your vehicle’s manufacturer offers compensation.

 

Comments (25)
  • Was away for seven days and car wouldn’t start when I returned. This is the third time it happened! I end up hooking it up to a battery charger I went out and bought. Should I look up the date on my battery or just call Subaru? Can’t go to Sabaru with a dead battery 🤬

  • 2020 Outback. Making good time coming back from the San Juan mountains camping in Colorado, I stopped in Lamesa TX for a snack. Came out to car and would not start “Access Key Not Detected” . Stranded on a Saturday night. One night in car and one night at hotel. Tow to Midland Texas ($487) New battery $420. But what if it had been my wife or daughter stranded? What if this would have happened up where we camped?
    In trying to communicate this to the Service Mgr. and GM in a meeting I detected a smirk on the service managers face and total indifference from the GM.

  • John Parker-Kennedy

    Interested about the issues of the batteries. Our is a 2020 Outback model and our issues have occurred three times while we were camping two nights. So yes, we do opened the doors/trunk when we needed access but we don’t think that should happen. So now, I start up the car each night while camping for about 5 minutes. The technician at the Subaru shop say that we must alway keep out car locked so it won’t drain the battery, which we do anyway, but seriously?

  • I am an 89 years old lady living in a remote area and depend on 2018 Subaru for emergencies. Last week when I tried to start my car the battery was dead. Had to call a neighbor to jump start the battery and go to an auto store to purchase a battery for the price of $164.00. not only is this expensive for a lady on a fixed income, it is frightening not to have a dependable car.

    • WOW, sounds just like my story – if I do not drive my 2019 Legacy for 72 hours it is dead as a doornail. I live in the mountains, and my driveway is gravel, with quite a steep incline, so basically I am on my own. I have replaced the battery like you, and now I have to drive around with an emergency jumper system, which also cost me an arm and a leg. This is my 5th Subaru, and I have never had so much trouble with a car in my life. After the New Year I am driving it to the dealership and leaving it.

  • Have 2017 Subaru Outback with 20k miles.Twice the battery ran down.This time we cannot get into the car with the keyfob OR the emergency manual key. Car is in garage,dead as a doornail and I cant even unlock it to replace the battery. Subaru Roadside Assistance has been no help so far.

  • I had several episodes with my 2017 Subaru Outback when the battery died after briefly operating the radio with the engine off, or operating the lift gate too many times in loading the vehicle. So, I bought a portable jump starting device and stored it in the back of the vehicle. But the next time that the battery failed, I could not open the lift gate to get to the jump starter. This is incredibly poor engineering for any vehicle, but particularly for one that is marketed for “rugged off road use.”
    Imagine this happening to somebody who takes the vehicle camping in a location a location away from other people and with no cell service. Subaru ought to be fined for deceptive advertising.

  • Why isn’t this a recall? Will just buying a heavy duty battery be enough to cover the symptoms? Since there is no response, or solution, that Subaru has come up with to fix the actual cause. I love Subaru brands but this is enough to make me never buy one again!

    • Nope. Tried that. The battery is not the problem. It could possibly be a faulty alternator (some of the descriptions here seem to be that issue), but I would bet $$ there is a parasitic drain somewhere.

  • Be aware – you do not have warranty for the battery purchased from Subaru dealer, if you install yourself!!!
    Walmart provided better warranty. I had 1 year old battery, which does not hold charge anymore – NO WARRANTY!!!
    Because it was not installed in dealership ($138 per hour charge). I did not make $138 per hour. Local mechanic charged me $20. It is shame, Subaru was a good car. It is it. Bad electronics, bad service. Should look for other brand.

  • I have a 2017 Outback. The battery drains if I don’t drive it for 3 days. I just replaced the battery and still have the same problem. I have gotten into the habit of starting the car almost daily but that doesn’t seem to be enough. I carry a small battery charger in the car now. I have had several recalls on my Ford over the years which have been nowhere near the problem this battery situation creates and I don’t know why Subaru not only doesn’t fix it, but apparently keeps making vehicles with the same problem. I am now in a position where I have an extra vehicle and would like to sell one. The Subaru is newer but if I keep it, I almost have to keep the second vehicle just as a backup.

  • Our 2019 Subaru Outback battery went dead today for the 4th time in a month. The first and even the second time this happened, I thought that perhaps I had left some light on. So after recharging it for the second time I checked everything in the interior (including checking after it was dark outside) and there was no light left on. I checked the alternator with a volt meter and it was registering properly. In addition I ensured that both battery posts were free of any buildup and that the leads did not display any crust that would inhibit the connection. The battery went dead again we did not use the car for about 3 days. I took it to the AutoZone store for a diagnosis. They thought the battery cells were fine and said that I should have it checked out by a mechanic. After the second incident I began to wonder if the battery was being depleted while the car was not being used. After the third incident and my diagnosis by AutoZone, I decided to see if other Outback owners were experiencing similar problems which led me to this webpage. I have a growing suspicion that the problem is with the Controller Area Network. I live in a rural area in northeast Washington with cold winters. I go skiing in the back-country and do not want to end a ski day far from home with a dead battery. I likewise travel to places in the winter by plane, and I do not want to return to the airport late in the evening to discover that my car will not start. I appreciate the information provided at this webpage so I don’t begin to fix things that may not result in a solution to this problem.

  • My car is a 2019 Subaru Outback and I had to get a tow truck driver and buy a new battery the first weekend of November 2021 and tonight my car would not start and after the key was taken out and we were out of the vehicle ,the headlights stayed on a long time the first time and the second time I thought I’d just see if it would start and it would not but the lights started flickering like a Christmas show, I took a video of it, it did it for about 2 minutes.

  • Today is the second time my 2017 Subaru Forester battery has died. My car has less than 30,000 miles. I guess I will mention this situation when I contact the dealership about a battery replacement.

  • I have the same issue with my 2015 Outback. Even with a year old battery, I’ve still had to jump start it a few times. I’ve also while camping left the back gate open for a time & battery died. Big pain in the butt because we travel all over the place & have been “stranded” because of this issue

  • Within the first month of owning my new 2019 Outback, I had to have it jumped because it would’ve start. I have had to have it jumped about 6 or 7 times since then and this is my3rd battery, put in by the dealer. I have been a loyal Subaru customer up to now but am furious as I sit and wait for the tow truck to come to have it towed to Subaru. They lie to us and refuse to take care of the problem for us. I can’t imagine ever buying another Subaru. I will loose money trading this car in but I cannot live this way, always worried my car won’t start and dealing with being stranded.

  • 2019 outback
    Three batteries and numerous trips to dealer who insisted all was fine. Extended warranty was running out and I took it back only to be told the same story
    Left my wife stranded for hours at the Airport parking lot twice. Had to call for a jump start both time. Over 100 bucks each time. If it isn’t started and ran every two days, it likely won’t start.
    I’m trading it off and will never buy another Suburu product.

  • 2019 Outback, if I leave car for five days, the battery is dead, three times/3 trips to dealer,
    Subaru Service had me register with a third party to register regarding the class action suit/ Subaru battery,
    Charged battery for two hours but would not replace the battery
    The battery is not the issue, the electrical system draws too much & the battery cannot recharge,

    I leave everything on off, including the radio(press button for five seconds to turn off),
    Also drive with headlights on (manual), which somehow makes the battery recharge faster,

    Bottom line, this is a pain & Subaru should retrofit,
    Selling my Subaru

  • We have 2017 and 2018 Subaru Outback’s . Each have close to 30,000. On 2 separate occasions this past month I have been pulled into parking space and sat in the car for about 20 minutes each time, waiting for my wife . Nothing was on, key was off. When I went to start each car the battery was dead. The 2017 already had the battery changed a couple years ago. Had to start each car with my power pack I carry. Both batteries checked out by mechanic show no dead cells or problem. As mentioned by others here there is something in the car that seems to drain the battery.

  • I bought a used ’19 Outback that had a new battery in it at the time. Now for the 2nd time in only a few weeks the car won’t start. I luckily have a charger and am able to charge the battery when I’m at home. I also have a small jump starter that I now carry in that car and have shown my wife how to hook it up and get the car started just in case she has an issue away from home.
    Apparently from all the other people that have had the same issue with no admitted responsibility from any of the Subaru dealers, I’ll be looking to trade it for a Toyota or Lexus which have a very good reputation and very good dealerships to deal with.

    I also have an issue with poor radio reception in this car, and have seen and heard of several others that have the same problem. I now believe that the radio and the battery drainage may be related, and I believe the so called super powers at Subaru should be able to figure this out and make it right with everyone.

    I will never stop or shop at another Subaru dealership, unless or until Subaru stands up to their lies and corrects not only the old problems, but also corrects the issues in the new cars.

  • My 82 year old mother-in-law is having the same issue with her 2018 Outback. The current battery is a little over a year old and the car won’t start after about 4 days. I jumped it today and had to disconnect the battery for 15 minutes to get the tailgate working. Also had to reset the automatic front window switches. Has anyone tried a premium battery such as Optima?

  • I have a 2020 Outback that I had purchased new in 2019. Original battery in vehicle went dead after about 29 months. Because car was under warranty, it was replaced free. Service person advised me at that time there was an issue and battery had 3 year warranty. Nine months later this new battery started going dead. Lucky for me it happened each of the four times when car was in garage. Last time I had it towed to Subaru dealer, 39 miles, tow paid for by Subaru. When I called to see if car was repaired, I was told new battery installed. I asked if underlying problem was resolved. I was told that Subaru is replacing original battery, size 700, with new batteries, size 900, and there have been no further issues. Since I have not found any mention of this “solution”, I’m wondering if anyone else has?

  • Have had this issue on my 2016 since I bought it. Have had to buy 2 heavy duty batteries and it still goes dead. Had the problem less than a month after purchase. Took it to dealership. They acted dumb. Like it was something new. We joined the lawsuit and looking for a partial refund of service fee and battery (s). We today decided to trade it in and get a Toyota truck. I will bad mouth Subaru at every opportunity. We figured they Knew a class action suit was coming but it was cheaper to pay the suit than to fix the cars. STAY AWAY FROM SUBARUS. MY OPINION IS THEY ARE DISHONEST CROOKS.

  • We bought our Outback used and purchased the extended warranty. Our car will set 3 to 4 days and the battery will not start. Why hasn’t Subaru company found a way to reprogram the computer system to go into sleep mode? It would stop a lot of emotional stress and financial loss.

  • I have had the same problem with my 2019 legacy. I was told it was because computers run even when the car is turned off. I researched this and it is not true. Only the clock and alarm system( which I don’t have) still run but they aren’t enough to kill the battery.
    There is definitely an issue with the CAN or alternator or electrical system. My car is now at Suburu for a diagnostic check. We will see what they find.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

See If Your Car Qualifies for Compensation!

Start Your FREE Case Review

or give us a call at:

(310) 627-2665

5 Stars
See If You Qualify for Compensation!

Start Your FREE Case Review

5 Stars
Free Consultations
(310)-627-2665

No Fees Until We Win!

Cali Lemon Lawyers Office Location Map
Local Office

6420 Wilshire Blvd.
Ste. 200
Los Angeles, CA 90048
Map & Directions [+]

Serving All of California
Lemon Law California

Other states we service include Florida, Georgia, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Tennessee & Texas.


The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship.

© 2023 All Rights Reserved.

GLP Marketing

Powered by Geo Landing Pages & SERPs