Arbor Day Y'all

Find a good spot and go plant something. Next up, a few words about purchasing a used Subaru.

Automotive Art (sort of)

I robbed these pictures from Tom Clark . Interesting and in my opinion beautiful pictures derived from the most common junk, but also a reminder of the fact that our "stuff" doesn't just disappear when we're done with it.

Happy Easter

Easter at it's best.....

Forester Seatbelt Recall

 Over the past couple of days we've had a fielded a few calls about this and since I see so many of these cars around town I wanted to post a little info. It's going to affect A LOT of cars so it would be a good idea to get in line. SOA should start sending letters around the first week in April.
 Subaru is issuing a recall for 275,000 Foresters today, built between November 26, 2007 and March 13,2012.
NHTSA cites a fault in the automatic locking retractor in the rear center seat belt assembly as the source of the issue. This specific seat belt connector is used for restraining child seats, and because of the faulty locking mechanism, child seats can become un-secure while the vehicle is in motion, greatly increasing the injury risk for the child in the seat.
Subaru will contact all owners affected and replace the faulty seat belt component free of charge. The recall is expected to begin on or before April 13, 2012. Concerned customers can contact Subaru at 1-800-782-2783, or the NHTSA safety hotline at 1-888-327-4236.

Take a look under the hood

Perhaps one more reason other than just being proactive to lift the hood of your Subaru once in awhile. As you can see in the picture something started to build some affordable housing from recyclable materials. The flat top of the boxer engine's block makes a cozy home for rodents. Luckily, with such a mild winter we've seen fewer of these nests but then again winter's not over.

How to make your headlights live

I wanted to make a quick post to help clarify a common issue we see at the shop. Usually it starts by a customer calling with the concern that one or possibly both headlights are not working yet they or their regular mechanic has replaced the bulbs to no avail. What some don't know is that certain Subarus such as Legacy Outback, Tribeca, some Bajas and later model Foresters use a separate bulb for low beam and high beam and the low beam bulb is sometimes a little hidden so it's not as obvious. In the picture you see the back of the headlight after the dust cover has been removed. The bulb on the bottom with the green and black wires is the high beam bulb while just above it resides the low beam bulb. This particular headlight assembly is from a 2002 Legacy and would look the same for a 2000-2004 Outback. This is the setup that seems to cause the most confusion although we've fielded calls from frustrated customers on all of the dual bulb cars.
   One other question we often get is about bulb life. Most of the time it's "why do my headlight bulbs keep blowing?". There can be many reasons but I'll go over what I consider to be the most common as people sometimes want to over complicate this due to the fact that electricity is involved. Repeated bulb failures can almost always be traced back to two things, a bulb of poor quality (made in China) or the fact that the vast majority of Subaru drivers leave their headlights on 100% of the time because the car will let you due to the fact that unlike other cars the headlamp relays are no longer powered when the ignition is turned off. A convenient feature yes, but problematic in the grand scheme of things. Leaving the light switch in the on position is a bad idea for two reasons. The first of which is that it creates an extra strain on the battery when cranking due to the fact that the headlamps are drawing current. In the winter this can lead to a no start condition pretty quickly, especially on a car with a marginal battery. But most importantly in relation to the bulb question is that it simply decreases the life of the headlight bulb by running the bulb at full wattage since every bulb has a life expectancy at it's rated output. This also produces quite a bit of heat at the electrical connector for the bulb resulting in either melted connectors or most often melted wires which even a high quality bulb can't survive with for very long. This is the reason why Subaru uses a DRL or daytime running light by illuminating the high beam at a lower wattage so you still have the safety feature of your car being visible to other drivers without the added strain on the electrical system. Replacing most of the bulbs on your Subaru is a relatively simple procedure but if in doubt always remember to check your owner's manual or give us a call and we'll be happy to help. Thanks for reading.

Good will toward furry creatures

The Man
 I'm more than a bit ashamed that it's taken this long for me to post something on this blog and when I finally do it's not even about cars. Go figure. Just to be clear the purpose of this page is to give Subaru owners (and maybe owners of other brands too) some information and insight into some of the common issues that arise with Subarus as well as clear up a lot of misinformation that gets tossed around from time to time. But for now this post was to let everyone know about something we're trying for the month of December and if successful periodically throughout the coming year for other worthy causes. Everyone at Six Star is pretty fond of animals, especially dogs so I decided to pick a local rescue organization to donate a percentage of December's sales to. We settled on PAWS Atlanta. A local no kill operation located in Decatur that has been at it for 45 years. Paws not only serves as a temporary home for stray cats and dogs but also provides low cost vaccinations, spay and neutering and education through community outreach. So the way this will work is for the month of December for every 100 dollars up to 500 dollars someone spends we donate 5 dollars. Anything over 500 dollars it then goes to 10 for every hundred. At the end of the month we'll post a total and present them with a check. So even if you don't own a Subaru or you have a brand new one that doesn't need a thing, give a thought to donating to Paws or any other shelter of your choice. I know from personal experience that without shelters I would have never had the good fortune of meeting this big guy over 15 years ago.
Thanks for reading and stay tuned for real car stuff.

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