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True, but suffer is perhaps a little too strong a word. I'd say it's slightly decreased. Consider that 750W is 1hp. If something is drawing 5A, that's less than 0.1 hp.
Mathematically speaking that should be true. I haven’t necessarily experienced it in the Ascent but in previous vehicles replacing a bad battery has increased several mpg ?
 

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Mathematically speaking that should be true. I haven’t necessarily experienced it in the Ascent but in previous vehicles replacing a bad battery has increased several mpg ?
A bad battery can cause a big electrical resistance on the alternator. A really bad battery can even kill an alternator. So, that makes sense.

IIRC, we have a 200 amp alternator.
 

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Aside from the tailgate issue, I think the battery is a bad design, or frequently defective. We have a 2019 Ascent Touring, purchased in March of 2019. Our first incident of dead battery had nothing to do with tailgate being left open. My wife came out of a meeting at church and there was barely enough juice to get the door open. AAA rep reported dead cell in battery. Jumped it, drove five miles to home, drove to dealer next day - 8 miles, maybe 15 minutes. They said battery checked out ok but since I had printout from AAA saying dead cell, dealer replaced battery -- with OEM, saying they could not replace with anything else. Called Subaru of America and registered a problem report.

Forward now to incident 2 - wife came out to car after getting hair done. Door opened, but when she tried to start car - all dash lights flashed randomly and car wouldn't start. Called the Subaru road assistance - and got notified they were sending someone from a company with the word Upholstery in it. Sounds like a shop that does towing as a sideline. I got there before the 'assistance' and got the car jumped with portable battery jumpstart kit (after reading the forums, bought a kit for each car). Cancelled the assistance request.

Talked to dealership - to their credit, they ended up giving us a loaner and the service manager drove our car for four days back and forth to work. He didn't have any issues and everything checked out.

Now - incident 3. Packed car for trip, and during the packing had doors and tailgate open frequently. Got the house locked up, and the next step was to start car and begin the trip. Only problem was that the car wouldn't start. Flashing lights all over the dash. Subaru 'Assistance' response was 'well we can have it towed into the dealership.' Sure, packed for trip and they want to tow it into the dealership. Fortunately the service department was still open at my dealership. Won't go into my conversations with them, but within the hour the service manager and a tech were at my house checking things out. I give them credit and thanks - they've been very responsive. It was good to have purchased locally. I had made one attempt to start car with my jumper kit and it didn't work. Didn't want to cause any other issues, but it may have worked if I tried again - was down to 65% and I did have another kit in my other car. Anyhow, they got it started with their own jumper kit and checked alternator, etc. Problem was attributed to simple acts of having opening and closing doors/tailgate too much while packing. All looked ok and decision was made to go on trip and if I had any issues on trip, get another battery and they would reimburse. They said they would replace with a non-oem battery on our return.

No issues on trip. Car even sat unused in parking garage for a week while we were on a cruise. I did leave the car running if I ever was opening the tailgate for more than a simple open/close. When we returned, the dealership installed an Optima Red Top Battery. It's been a little over a month now with no other issues. Question may be asked - do we get better mileage? Can't say. At they same time they replaced the battery, they did two recalls that dealt with ECU. All seems good and we love the car. I have purchased, but not yet installed, Nick Blackman's switch for the fuse that controls the tailgate, just in case I do want to leave the tailgate open for an extended period.

I have not been able to find a reference to show the specs of the OEM battery that came with car, but whatever they are - it's not enough to handle all the electronics, or they are faulty to begin with.

I also want to add that my wife is handicapped and I complained to Subaru of America about not being able to open tailgate if battery is dead. Her electric wheelchair is in the way of the access cover inside, and besides she wouldn't be able to crawl back there to open it. She can walk in/out of a store, home, church, but going to mall, COSTCO, etc, requires the chair. And they want to tow the car to dealership - with the wheelchair inside? That is a non-starter. However, the same issue is in other cars. When we were car-shopping, I asked the same question at the Toyota dealership when looking at a Highlander - "How to get tailgate open if battery dead?". They couldn't tell me. I think the manufacturers should be required to have a manual key access as a backup to open tailgate.

OK - I'll get off my soapbox. Thanks.
 

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Nice write-up Chaz. Highlights the need to have motorized rear door delete option. Not just for those of us who wish to have electronics, but for those who have serious issues if the battery is dead with cargo.
 

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Took the dog out this morning and my lifgate on my 2020 is open about 3 feet. ???????
Nothing missing but battery is dead.
I bought the car new in late November and have 3K miles on it.
What's up with this? Liftback hadn't been up since Saturday.
Charging the battery now and researching I see this is an issue people are having.
I love the vehicle but now I'm concerned this is a glitch that can just randomly happen?
Not happy!!!!!
Yes!!! Happened to me. Was horrible. Just got the car. Was able to jump start it but car never the same since so every night now I have to go out and check my car at least twice to make sure none of the interior lights are on because the car will definitely not start in the morning it’s a real pain and may be a reason to not least the car again when this new lease is up
 

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If your car is acting oddly after the battery drain-down, it's likely that the battery is a goner. Not your fault, just a fact that these batteries get damaged after such a drain.

Alternatives:
1) Tell your service advisor that the car has been having trouble starting, and have the dealership run a load test on the battery. If it's been causing your problems, it will test poorly. Demand a warranty replacement. (Note that the OEM battery has seen some complaints about poor quality. My last two OEM's were bad and got replaced. I keep hoping for a gem, but #3 is starting to show signs of badness.)
2) Go spend some $$ and get an aftermarket of good reputation and high capacity. There are threads in this forum with suggestions. Some folks have gotten Subaru to pay for these batteries, but I think it's not a gimme and you'll have to press SOA pretty hard that you had no choice and couldn't get an OEM replacement etc. (I'm waiting to be stranded at home on a Sunday for just this scenario.)

F.S.
 

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For what it's worth, I put my battery on an overnight trickle charge and have not had any further issues (so far) and it's been a couple weeks. I'm also now fairly convinced I must have bumped the open button on the fob at some point to have caused the initial issue so now car is always locked and I am super aware of the fob.
 

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For what it's worth, I put my battery on an overnight trickle charge and have not had any further issues (so far) and it's been a couple weeks. I'm also now fairly convinced I must have bumped the open button on the fob at some point to have caused the initial issue so now car is always locked and I am super aware of the fob.
I'm still using the original Ascent battery after the hatch was open over night almost a year ago. I charged it back up then and haven't had any problems during the cold weather. It wasn't completely dead, the lights worked but not enough juice to engage the starter.

If you bump the hatch button, unfortunately it will go up even when locked.
 

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Discussion Starter · #33 ·
I never gotten more than 3 years out of stock Subaru battery, ever. Many, many Subarus of all kinds.
All were garaged, some in a climate-controlled garage.
Crazy though, I have had awesome luck with Walmart batteries.

My Dad’s 2011 Legacy just had it’s Walmart battery give up after SEVEN years. Car has never seen a garage in 7 bitter cold CO winters. His stock battery lasted 3 years. We replaced the Walmart battery with another Walmart battery of the exact same part number and model. Hope it goes for another seven.

I have read numerous places that Walmart batteries actually do very well in the comparison tests. Who’d a thunk. YMMV
 

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Crazy though, I have had awesome luck with Walmart batteries.

I have read numerous places that Walmart batteries actually do very well in the comparison tests. Who’d a thunk. YMMV
Google says Walmart batteries have been made by Johnson Controls for the past 18 years. Says that they make 33% of all auto batteries under different names.
 
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Discussion Starter · #36 ·
VERY different batteries - so apparently within JC, there are quality tiers, with OEM Subaru being at the very bottom.
 

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My go-to for batteries now is NAPA due to their warranty. Prices are equal or better than competitors. The free replacement period is shorter but the pro-rated period is years longer than others. My experience prior to NAPA was usually to fail JUST outside of the warranty, even with expensive AGM batteries. I'd have to pay the full replacement cost. Now at least I'll get something back with the longer warranty.
 

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For what its worth, I've had similar issues with having the hatch open for an extended period of time & drained the battery almost completely. Since I was going on an extended trip & didn't want to take the chance with the original battery, I purchased a battery from the Subaru parts department & had it installed. The original battery was group 35 CCA 530, & had a 2 yr. warranty. The battery from parts was group 35 CCA 550 & has a 7 yr. prorated warranty after 2 1/2 years. So at least my additional purchase has gained me a better warranty.
I believe that after reading various threads, I've concluded that there are two related issues working together. The excessive battery drain with the hatch open causing the cheap OEM battery to fail prematurely.
I don't know about anybody else, but I believe SOA has an obligation to all of us loyal long time Subaru owners to recognize & resolve these issue(s). I have filed a formal complaint to SOA & wish that all others having this same issue(s) will do the same!
 

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For what its worth, I've had similar issues with having the hatch open for an extended period of time & drained the battery almost completely. Since I was going on an extended trip & didn't want to take the chance with the original battery, I purchased a battery from the Subaru parts department & had it installed. The original battery was group 35 CCA 530, & had a 2 yr. warranty. The battery from parts was group 35 CCA 550 & has a 7 yr. prorated warranty after 2 1/2 years. So at least my additional purchase has gained me a better warranty.
I believe that after reading various threads, I've concluded that there are two related issues working together. The excessive battery drain with the hatch open causing the cheap OEM battery to fail prematurely.
I don't know about anybody else, but I believe SOA has an obligation to all of us loyal long time Subaru owners to recognize & resolve these issue(s). I have filed a formal complaint to SOA & wish that all others having this same issue(s) will do the same!
My battery drained requiring a boost while I had the engine off but the radio on. I do not know if I had it on the first ignition point or the second but it only took one hour for it to die. I was washing the vehicle. I never had an issue with the battery before.
 

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My battery drained requiring a boost while I had the engine off but the radio on. I do not know if I had it on the first ignition point or the second but it only took one hour for it to die. I was washing the vehicle. I never had an issue with the battery before.
I have read several threads in the forum concerning the battery & would direct you to a thread called "Draining the Battery" While quite long in content, it states an opinion that the OEM battery is not suited for handling any accessory drain with the engine not running. In it gives several suggestions for upgrading the battery to one that is better suited to handle these loads. Or you can choose to continue to put up with the OEM letting you down & have the dealer replace it with another that won't prevent you from having the same situation repeated. I would suggest that you bite the bullet, but the better battery & then file a complaint with Subaru of America & ask then to reimburse you. That's what I have done essentially. Good luck!
 
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