Common Problems in the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek and Fixes

Common Problems in the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek and Fixes

Last Updated on September 29, 2023 by Christ

Owning a car is an investment which extends further than the upfront cost alone; hence, making an informed decision is vital. This report aims to delve into the broad spectrum of problems found in the 2018 model of the Subaru Crosstrek, taking into account aspects of the car’s mechanics, interior/exterior, electrical systems, and recall information. Whether you’re contemplating investing in the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek, an existing owner wishing to stay on top of potential problems, or just a regular car enthusiast, this comprehensive exploration lays out the details and nuances.


Mechanical Problems

Engine Problems

The 2018 Subaru Crosstrek has been reported to have issues with the engine, primarily related to stalling and failure. Users have noted that the vehicle’s engine stalls without warning while driving. In most cases, the check engine light comes on prior to the stalling. Others have reported engine failure while driving at high speeds, posing a significant risk for accidents. The probable cause of these problems may be a faulty fuel pump, an unresponsive ignition system, or a malfunctioning transmission control module. It’s highly recommended to check these components and replace them if necessary. Regular maintenance of the vehicle helps to prevent or at least mitigate these issues.

Transmission Issues

One recurring issue with the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek is the continuously variable transmission (CVT), which has been reported to jerk and shudder under different driving conditions. Symptoms of CVT issues include transmission slippage, high RPMs before the vehicle changes gears, and a noticeable delay when shifting out of park to drive. Subaru suggests changing the transmission fluid every 24,000 miles to prevent transmission issues. However, some heating issues in the transmission have been proven to persist regardless of these preventive measures. In some severe cases, a complete transmission overhaul or replacement may be necessary.

Exhaust System Problems

Some owners of the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek have reported problems with the vehicle’s exhaust system. This includes a noise that is heard when the vehicle is at idle, similar to a puttering sound. This could be due to a leak somewhere within the exhaust system. Some owners have also reported smelling exhaust fumes inside the vehicle when the engine is running, indicating possible leaks in the exhaust pipe or manifold that could be allowing fumes to escape into the cabin. In addition, owners have noted issues with the check engine light coming on due to issues with the oxygen sensor. In these situations, it is essential to have a professional inspect the exhaust system and replace any damaged components immediately.

Steering and Suspension Challenges

The 2018 Subaru Crosstrek has faced a fair share of steering and suspension challenges. Users have raised concerns regarding an overabundance of noise, unmanageable steering, and a sense of insecurity while operating the vehicle, particularly at higher speeds. Oftentimes, these indicators suggest problems with the power steering fluid, the suspension mechanism, or alignment discrepancies. It is vital for owners to keep up with routine tire rotations, ensure their tires are appropriately inflated, and consistently check for correct alignment. Routine inspections of struts and shock absorbers are also essential to keep the vehicle stable.

2018 Subaru Crosstrek Engine, Transmission, Exhaust System, and Steering/Suspension Issues

Interior/Exterior Issues

Problems within 2018 Subaru Crosstrek’s Interior

The 2018 Subaru Crosstrek’s interior has not been without its own set of problems, with the electronic systems being the primary concern. Users have reported the infotainment system freezing unexpectedly, the backup camera failing to operate correctly, and connectivity issues with the Bluetooth system. The random shutdown of the radio is another recurrent anomaly.

There were also a handful of reports highlighting faulty door locks. In several cases, doors would randomly lock and unlock, or the key fob would fail to be recognized by the car. These instances not only disrupt the smooth operation of the vehicle but could also potentially compromise its safety and security.

Besides these, there have been a few grievances regarding the vehicle’s seating. Some owners found their front seats to be uncomfortable when embarking on longer journeys, attributing this discomfort to insufficient cushioning or subpar ergonomic design. The lack of proper lumbar support was a notable concern, leading to discomfort or potential back problems over prolonged periods.

Exterior Problems with the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek

There have been instances of the paint cracking, peeling or chipping away – especially on the hood, bumper, or alongside the door. This could detract from the aesthetic appeal of the vehicle and could potentially expose the vehicle to elements leading to rusting if not addressed promptly.

Next, the vehicle’s lighting system has been a source of concern for some. There have been reports of the lights burning out faster than expected, requiring frequent replacements. This could be costly over time and also pose a safety hazard while driving in darkened or dimly lit conditions.

Identifying and Addressing 2018 Subaru Crosstrek Issues

Recognizing potential issues with a 2018 Subaru Crosstrek can depend on the type of problem. For example, paint defects are usually easily identifiable based on visual inspection. However, spotting mechanical or electrical issues often requires careful attention to the vehicle’s performance and awareness of any system warning indicators.

If you come across any problems with your 2018 Subaru Crosstrek, it’s recommended that you consult with a certified mechanic or your local Subaru dealership immediately. Some of these concerns might fall under a recall program, which could completely cover repair costs. Subaru’s factory warranty might also include coverage for certain issues.

For preserving the condition of the vehicle’s paint, consider applying a protective coating or waxing the car regularly. You might be able to lessen the impact of seat-related problems with accessories like seat covers or lumbar support cushions. As a proactive measure against lighting system issues, conduct frequent inspections on all vehicle bulbs. Regularly servicing your vehicle and addressing any irregularities promptly can contribute greatly to maintaining your Subaru Crosstrek in optimal working order.

A concerned individual looking at a Subaru Crosstrek's interior, highlighting the potential problems discussed in the text.

Electrical Problems

Common Infotainment System Problems

The infotainment system of the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek has shown to have some persistent issues. Multiple Crosstrek owners have reported experiencing difficulties with the vehicle’s radio tuning, usability of in-car apps, and Bluetooth connectivity. Notably, the Bluetooth feature has been known to disconnect unpredictably, such as in the middle of phone calls or during music streaming, causing interruptions.

Frequent radio malfunctions have been noted as well, with cases involving the radio unexpectedly freezing or shutting down. The infotainment screen is another common trouble area, occasionally going blank or freezing upon startup, making it nonfunctional until the vehicle is restarted. These problems could potentially be traced back to a software malfunction or a defect in the infotainment system’s hardware.

Navigation Problems

The 2018 Crosstrek’s navigation system is similarly problematic. Many owners have complained of the GPS showing incorrect locations, failing to update in real-time, lagging, or not even functioning at all. These issues could be the result of satellite link issues or software faults within the navigation system.

Air Conditioning Concerns

Air conditioning problems are another common grievance with the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek. Often, when the air conditioning is switched on, it tends to either exhibit poor cooling performance or, at times, blow warm air instead. The underlying causes for such issues might include refrigerant leakage, compressor failures, or evaporator issues.

Battery Life

Battery drainage is another significant issue that owners have reported with the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek. The drainage is so severe that it often leaves the battery unable to sustain enough charge to start the car. These problems can emerge from factors such as parasitic drain, wherein components in the car continue to draw power even when the vehicle is off, or from faulty battery cells.

Addressing Potential Issues

If you’re experiencing problems with your 2018 Subaru Crosstrek, don’t despair. Subaru has released multiple software updates aimed at enhancing the efficiency of the infotainment system and the navigation unit. You can install these updates at home or take your car to a Subaru dealer to have it done for you.

For issues related to the air conditioning unit, regular maintenance checks and servicing can keep the system working at its best. However, if the problem is more severe, replacement of parts with genuine ones may be necessary. If your car has a tendency to drain its battery quickly, it might be remedied easily by simply replacing it. But if the issue persists, seeking advice from a Subaru dealer or a reliable mechanic could prove beneficial.

It’s worth noting that while these issues have been reported, they are not ubiquitous among all 2018 Subaru Crosstrek vehicles. Being aware of these common issues and potential solutions can help ensure that your driving experience remains hassle-free.

Picture of Subaru Crosstrek with dashes instead of spaces

Safety and Recall Information

Potential Brake Issues and Recalls in the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek

One of the significant problems identified with the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek is related to the braking system. This issue has led to a recall due to the potential for increased stopping distances, which could pose a risk for accidents. The recall itself, which affected more than 1,000 Crosstrek models in the U.S., was due to a faulty brake hose swivel pin that could theorectically seal improperly. As a result, this could lead to a brake fluid leak, thereby reducing braking ability and increasing the probability of crashing. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) and Subaru requested that owners who notice symptoms related to this issue take their Crosstrek to a dealership for the necessary repairs—at no cost to them.

Airbag Issues in 2018 Subaru Crosstrek

Subaru’s parent company, Fuji Heavy Industries, recalled certain 2018 Crosstrek cars due to airbag problems. The fault was linked to the Occupant Detection Sensor (ODS) control module. It could fail to properly determine if a child restraint system was in the front passenger seat. If the module was faulty, during a crash, the front passenger airbag may improperly inflate, exposing the child to higher risk. Owners whose cars suffered from this issue were urged to take their vehicle to a Subaru dealership for checking and implementation of necessary fixes.

Seatbelt Concerns with the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek

Another safety concern with the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek was the improper stitching on the rear seatback right-side seatbelt webbing. The faulty stitching could cause the seatbelt to fail in restraining an occupant during a crash, increasing the risk of injury. As a part of the recall, Subaru offered to inspect each vehicle’s rear seatbelts and, if necessary, replaced them at no cost to the vehicle owner.

Engine Issues in 2018 Subaru Crosstrek

The 2018 Subaru Crosstrek was affected by issues related to the engine stalling. Drivers reported experiencing problems with the vehicle stalling in the middle of driving, which could potentially lead to serious car accidents. Subaru recommended owners experiencing these problems to get their cars checked by authorized service centers. However, this issue was not officially recognized as a recall by either Subaru or the NHTSA.

Electronic Stability Control Problems in 2018 Subaru Crosstrek

Another issue reported in the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek was related to the vehicle’s Electronic Stability Control (ESC). Owners reported that vehicles may flash the ESC warning lamp and experience a harsh shift or decrease in engine performance. If uncorrected, this could lead to engine stalling, increasing the risk of a crash. This concern also was handled on a case-by-case basis and did not result in a safety recall by Subaru or the NHTSA.

Subaru has addressed many issues that have been identified with the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek, but as a responsible owner, it’s vital to stay informed about any potential recalls or updates. This can be achieved by regularly checking the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) website or getting in touch with your local dealership for any specific concerns about your vehicle.

Never forget that your safety is of utmost importance when you’re behind the wheel. Being aware of these issues and any further potential recalls, whether from Subaru or the NHTSA, is a crucial part of ensuring your safety while driving.

Image of a 2018 Subaru Crosstrek with brake problems and recall

Owner Complaints and Reviews

Concerns Regarding Vehicle Performance and Reliability

Several owners of the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek have raised issues concerning the vehicle’s overall performance and reliability. Commonly reported problems range from engine difficulties to full-scale transmission failures. A consistent area of concern is stalling or unexpected loss of power while in operation. Additionally, despite the vehicle’s purported ability to handle off-road conditions, some owners have noted that the Crosstrek struggles with even moderate-level trails, often leading to overheating. Beyond these power performance issues, there have also been complaints about excessive engine noise, particularly a loud rattling or grinding sound that increases when the vehicle is accelerating.

Subpar Infotainment System

One key area of dissatisfaction for Crosstrek owners centers on its infotainment system. Complaints include slow response times, sporadic failures, and difficulties with connecting or integrating smartphones. The Apple CarPlay, in particular, has been described as unpredictable and frustrating to navigate.

Fuel Economy

Though the 2018 Crosstrek is marketed for its fuel efficiency, some users have experienced otherwise. Owners have reported not achieving the intended miles per gallon in both city and highway driving scenarios. This could potentially indicate defects in the car’s fuel systems or inaccuracies in Subaru’s provided fuel consumption estimates.

Poor Interior Quality

Several owners have relayed disappointments with what they perceive as sub-par interior quality. These grievances range from cheap-feeling materials, creaky seats, rattling dashboard to problems with the heating in the car. Some users found that the heated seats have inconsistent performance, being sometimes too warm or not warm enough.

Positive Feedback and Appreciations

Despite these issues, it’s not all about drawbacks. Many owners laud the car’s spacious and comfortable interiors, as well as its impressive safety features. The Crosstrek’s EyeSight Driver Assist technology has garnered praise, with many users stating it adds a significant sense of security when on the road. Additionally, Crosstrek’s all-wheel drive has been positively welcomed by those living in snowy or rainy climates for providing excellent handling and traction.

The ride height and visibility provided by Crosstrek is another aspect appreciated by owners, giving them a wider and clearer view of their surroundings. Lastly, the cargo space is commendable, allowing for lots of grocery bags, camping gear, or general trunk-room needs.

However, the consensus among owners is that while the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek has its merits, its shortcomings might just be enough to give potential buyers pause.

Image of 2018 Subaru Crosstrek with its sleek design and off-road capability for adventurous journeys

Despite the issues discussed, the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek offers numerous positive aspects to its patronage as evidenced in the varying owner reviews and experiences. It’s not only the problems but also the way Subaru addresses them that significantly impacts the overall feedback. By exploring these myriad aspects comprehensively, the multi-faceted persona of the 2018 Subaru Crosstrek develops clearer, providing potential investors a more informed perspective. Thus, while every car brings its own set of challenges, having adequate knowledge can make all the difference in the ownership experience.

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