Subaru Won’t Start Battery Is Fine: What Happened?

Subaru won’t start battery is fine. This starting issue of your vehicle can be a good reason to ruin your day.

It doesn’t matter how reliable the car is; there’s always a chance it can’t operate properly.

The problem you’re having may result from a minor defect of an interconnected part, or it also can be a sign of more serious issues.

Let’s find out what causes the car not to start but has power right below!

Subaru Won’t Start Battery Is Fine – Why?

subaru won't start battery is fine
What The Causes Subaru Won’t Start Battery Is Fine

The Subaru won’t start, but the battery is fine because of faulty battery connections, corrosion, damaged alternator, bad starter motor, clogged fuel filter, empty gas tank, etc.

Although your issue can be simple or complicated, you’d better go to a service center for proper inspection and repair.

Bad Battery Connection

Once you’ve checked that the issue is not related to a weak battery, but you’re still struggling with the car starting, it means you may have a problem with the current flow.

And one of the common issues you may face in this case is the corroded battery terminals.

The situation tends to happen to the more-than-two-year-old battery. Battery acids and metal terminals reaction cause corrosion which, in turn, reduces the current flow.

Since there’s not enough power to crank the engine, I also experienced flicker dash lights and the clicking sound from the starter solenoid while starting your vehicle.

What to do when Subaru doesn’t start, and the battery is fine? I identified whether my vehicle was suffering from dirty battery contacts.

Lift the rubber covers over the terminals, and look for any silvery-green or white color deposits.

If you can spot it but no other damages or cracks, you just need to clean the battery instead of replacing it.

The cleaning process is not too complicated but requires a little attention to the order.

Poor Ground Connection

The ground connection is the connection between the battery negative terminal and the body or chassis of your car.

The engine also needs this connection to operate; thus, a ground wire or strap is required to link the engine and chassis.

The starter motor and solenoid can’t perform properly if the ground connection goes bad.

The solenoid may still work (with clicking noise), but the starter motor can’t since it needs a higher current to turn over.

I used a multimeter, changed the settings to ohms, placed one probe to the battery negative terminal and the other to the unpainted part of the car body to check the connection.

The ideal reading should be zero ohms or close to that. Do the same with the terminal and exposed metal part of the engine.

If the conductivity test result fails, you should inspect the condition of the connections. Check the connectors of the ground cables for rust or corrosion and clean them with sandpaper.

Drained Key FOB Battery

What could be wrong with my car if it won’t start but has power? The answer to your question might be a drained key FOB battery.

If your battery car key is empty, you can’t open or lock the door with a push, but you should do it manually. You can still actually start your engine by using the original key.

Yet, with the newer models of Forester, the only way to run the car is to place the key FOB close to the push start button, as there’s no place to insert the key.

I addressed the issue by installing a new battery or replacing the FOB key. With installation, you need to buy a CR2025 or CR2032 button cell.

Remove the emergency key carefully to open the FOB, take out the dead button cell, and place a new one.

If you need a new key, you should go to a Subaru dealership or repair shop to program one.

Faulty Starter

How do I reset my Subaru immobilizer
Error Starter

Why won’t my Subaru Forester suddenly start? A starter motor is in charge of starting the engine; thus, you can’t operate your car when it breaks down.

The component has an average life span of 100,000 to 150,000 miles, but it can be even shorter if you run your vehicle frequently. A sign of a bad starter motor is the clicking noise while starting.

Sometimes, I faced the situation because the gears were slightly out of alignment or the parts inside the motor were stuck together.

In this case, I tried a temporary fix using a stick or metal tool to hit the component.

However, you should bring your car to the maintenance shop as it’s the end of your starter motor’s life.

The mechanics may suggest you change the part, which costs about $100-$200, depending on the model.

Broken Alternator

Subaru Impreza won’t start; the battery is fine. The reason can be that you have a bad alternator.

An alternator is crucial to generating the electricity to charge the battery. Hence, in some cases, you might make a diagnostic mistake and only replace the battery to fix the starting problem.

It can work for a short time; the battery will run out again, and the engine will struggle to start.

In recent cars, alternators can perform 200,000 to 300,000 miles, yet it depends on how you drive.

Plus, if you own a used vehicle, your alternator is likely quite old and can be a source of issues, such as all dash lights coming on while driving. If it’s broken, you should replace it with a new one.

Clogged Fuel Filter

The fuel filter will not wear out but can be clogged with dirt, debris, and airborne particles gathered over time.

My car experienced a decrease in the filter’s permeability and fuel pressure at this point.

In general, it will not be a matter of concern, unless the filter is too dirty, affecting the performance of the engine.

Once your machine can’t operate at full capacity or even stop working due to the fuel filter, changing it is necessary as the detail can’t be cleaned.

Spark Issues

Ignition timing or a perfect-timed spark is a prerequisite for a vehicle to start. A lack of spark may make the engine crank, but the car won’t start.

It can be due to various causes, such as damaged spark plugs, malfunctioning ignition modules, or wiring issues.

Malfunctioning Fuel Pump

Why does my Subaru car turn on but won’t start? My car’s poor performance resulted from a failure in the fuel system, specifically, a bad fuel pump.

There is a list of things you should check and fix to restore its working condition, such as the fuel pump’s electrical connections and output.

However, a broken fuel pump is difficult to fix, so a replacement is required.

Empty Fuel Tank

Sometimes, the underlying issue can be more simple than you think. An empty fuel tank might be the answer you’re looking for.

If there’s no fuel, it doesn’t matter how much your engine cranks, your vehicle will not move.

What to do if your car suddenly won’t start? Once you identify you don’t have enough fuel, refill it. It’s the most simple way to troubleshoot your issue.

However, I used to encountered more complicated fuel-related issues, such as a dead fuel pump (as mentioned above) or a tank filled with improper gas.

The Car Isn’t In Park Or Neutral

When your vehicle is in gear, it will not start. It should be in the park or neutral. This reason may sound a little bit dumb, but sometimes, our heads are on the clouds too far to realize it.

I fixed this by shifting the gear to neutral and trying to start the engine. You can also try to press the brake pedal. If your car is a manual transmission, apply pressure to the clutch pedal.

If your vehicle just starts in neutral but not in park or vice versa, or you can turn it on when it’s in drive gear, pay close attention to the neutral safety switch as it might cause serious issues.

Seeking help from professionals is highly recommended.

Problems With The Security System

Why won t my subaru forester suddenly start
The Security System Issue

The purpose of the security system is to protect your car from unauthorized access. If it has any issues, it may lead to starting failure.

Besides dealing with the key FOB, you should try to spot any loose connections and tighten them.

You can also perform other diagnostics as well, such as checking the sensors for any defect or using a multimeter to measure the input and output circuits of the system’s control module.

If you think you need to change the sensors or control module, I suggest you double-check with the certified mechanic, as it’s a lengthy and costly repair.


How Do I Reset My Subaru Immobilizer?

Immobilizer is designed as an anti-theft system placed in the vehicle’s ECU. If there’s no correct transponder key, the system will prevent the engine from starting.

To reset it, keep pushing on the panic button. You should wait 10 minutes if the lock button is pressed twice.

Why Do My Subaru Lights Flicker And My Car Won’t Start?

While your car runs, the alternator provides power for the battery and other electrical components, such as the dashboard lights.

If you see flicker lights, you’ll likely have a problem with the alternator.

Other symptoms may include headlights and radio issues, or vehicles struggling to start. Bring your car to the repair shop for proper diagnosis.


The problem when the Subaru won’t start battery is fine is usually complicated until you discover the root cause. Thus, you need a proper inspection.

If you can figure out the issue by yourself, seeking help from an expert is advisable to ensure you address it entirely and correctly.

Leave a Comment