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How to Replace Rear ABS Sensor 10-14 Subaru Outback

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How to Replace Rear ABS Sensor 10-14 Subaru Outback

Created on: 2019-06-08

Learn how to replace the rear ABS sensor in your 10-14 Subaru Outback. 1A Auto will show you how to do it!

  1. step 1 :Removing the Wheel
    • Loosen the 19 mm lug nuts with the vehicle on the ground
    • Raise the vehicle with a floor jack
    • Secure the vehicle on jack stands
    • Remove the lug nuts
    • Pull off the wheel
  2. step 2 :Removing the ABS Sensor
    • Apply rust penetrant to the ABS sensor bolt
    • Remove the push pin retainer securing the trim panel covering the ABS wire electrical connector, and fold the panel aside
    • Disconnect the ABS wire electrical connector
    • Pry the ABS wire electrical connector off the body
    • Pry the ABS wire retaining clip off the body
    • Remove the two 10 mm bolts securing the ABS wire bracket to the lower control arm
    • Remove the 10 mm bolt securing the ABS sensor to the wheel knuckle
    • Remove the ABS sensor
  3. step 3 :Installing the ABS Sensor
    • Apply dielectric grease to the male end of the ABS wire electrical connector
    • Insert the ABS sensor into the wheel knuckle
    • Replace the ABS wire bracket and secure it with the two 10 mm bolts
    • Replace the 10 mm bolt securing the ABS sensor
    • Press the ABS wire retaining clip into the body
    • Press the ABS electrical connector retaining clip into the body
    • Reconnect the ABS electrical connector
    • Fold back the plastic trim and secure it with the push pin retainer
  4. step 4 :Replacing the Wheel
    • Slide the wheel into place
    • Start the lug nuts by hand
    • Tighten the 19 mm lug nuts preliminarily
    • Lower the vehicle partially to the ground
    • Tighten the lug nuts to 85 ft-lb in a star pattern
    • Lower the vehicle completely

Tools needed for replacement

  • Materials, Fluids, and Supplies

    Rust Penetrant

  • Ratchets & Related

    Socket Extensions

    Torque Wrench


    1/2 Inch Breaker Bar

  • Screwdrivers & Related

    Flat Blade Screwdriver

  • Sockets - Metric

    19mm Socket

    10mm Socket

  • Specialty Tools

    Plastic Fastener Remover

Installation Video
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Hey, friends. It's Len here at 1A Auto. Today, we're going to be working on a 2013 Subaru Outback. I'm going to be doing a right rear speed sensor. It's going to be very easy. I want to be the guy that shows you how to do it. If you need any parts, you can always check us out at

You're driving your car and you notice all these lights are on. You notice that your speedometer for some reason stopped working and you want to figure out what's going on, you want to pull the code, and more than likely it's an ABS sensor that's going to cause all these things. Like I said, you'd pull the code and figure out what's going on with it. For this particular vehicle, we found out that it's the right rear ABS sensor. Your particular case may be something different. What we're going to do is we're going to go ahead and replace the sensor, clear the code, and re-road test it.

I should just state that we raised the vehicle up off the ground. We made sure that it was safely supported and we have the wheel just barely touching the ground so it won't spin when I try to loosen these. I'm going to use my 19mm socket and I'm going to loosen these. All I'm going to do is break them free. I'm not going to go too far with them because I don't want my wheel to be able to wobble with the weight of the vehicle, even though there isn't very much and I don't want it to damage my studs. Now that I've got them loose, I'll bring the vehicle up, I'll make sure it's nice and safely secured, and then I'll remove these lug nuts and take the wheel off.

Now, I'm just going to remove all the lug nuts. I'll get the wheel down, and then we'll move on to the next step. This lug nut is coming free, I'm just holding the wheel so it can't come down on me. I'll safely bring it down, set it aside. Now, we can take a look at our ABS sensor. Here's the ABS wire right here, runs up and along this and up into here. It feels like this is where the connector is going to be. I'm going to pull this pin, try to pull this aside, see if I can disconnect it and then we'll move along to disconnecting it from the hub itself.

Now, I'm just going to hit this with a little bit of penetrant, maybe. There we go. I'm going to let that sit while I move over to here. I'm going to pull this little push clip because this is where my ABS wire seems like it's going up into. I'm just going to pull out the center. There it is, a little push clip. Right now it's in the unlocked position. Once you push it in, push this in, it spreads those ears and it locks it. There we go. Here's our ABS wire. Let's see if we can disconnect it. I'm going to try to push it in right there. All up inside here, there's quite a bit of dirt and stuff, which is going to kind of block me up from trying to push this locking mechanism because essentially right here is part of the bottom part and this is part of the top. I need to be able to get that top part pushed in.

There, just check it. Make sure there's no funny colors. Electrical connectors, you don't want any funny colors. We're going to come back behind here. I've got a little forky tool. You can use whatever you got, but essentially I just want to get this freed up from the body of the car. Just a little push clip thing, slides in, locks in. Next, we're going to come up here, and if you have a pocket screwdriver or whatever you have in your hand like me, you can just push right in this little center hole and that should come down. Here we are. This was just pressed up inside there. Easy peasy. There's a bracket right here that runs along the control arm and your ABS wire. If you're replacing the ABS wire and you got it from Subaru, it should come with the bracket itself. Mine came with a bracket, so I'm just going to take the whole bracket right off of there. Use the 10mm, turn these bolts to the left, obviously.

Just going to work it back and forth a little bit, just kind of helps break everything free. Feels like we're almost all the way out here at this point, or maybe I'm just hopeful. Thank you, Subaru, for the world's longest ABS wire bolt. Doesn't make any sense because the bracket that it goes through is only about that... Anyway, moving along. We've got another 10mm here, and then we've got one that holds the sensor itself right into the knuckle. I'm going to go ahead and remove those other two.

There it is, another long one. Now, I'm just going to get this last one right here. I want to spray it with the penetrant. Obviously, comes out a little easier. Almost there. There it is. Same as the other two. Nice. Should be able to move this sensor around. There it is. Here's our problem. Look at how that's worn at an angle. I'll show you what the new one looks like in comparison and we'll replace it with the new one. There we go. That's our two different sensors there. Now, we'll just get rid of this one. Nope, no, wrong one, this one, and we'll put in our brand new one.

I've got some copper never seize, just a little spray. I'm going to spray it on all those bolt holes. Go down here, we got one right there, one right there. That's just a connector. We don't have to worry about that, and then up here. Now, we can go ahead and install our sensor. Something that's usually good to do would be take a peek in there. Just make sure that everything is good. I know it's brand new, but you just never know these days. Those look great. If you have a little bit of silicon, just grab a little bit, and then I'm just going to put it right here. This is just going to help keep moisture out from in between the connectors. Somewhere down the line in case, I don't know, this car goes into some water pretty deep, water won't get in there and cause any issues.

My sensor side. I'm going to bring it in. Just going to slide it down in the hole just like that. I'm going to run the rest of the wire. Got all my little bolt holes lined up here. Never seize is going to make this nice. If you found that your bolts were pretty rusted, you could try to clean them up. That might be a good idea. Mine weren't really too bad on this particular vehicle. I'm just going to go ahead and tighten these up. There we are. We don't need to go crazy tight on these. I know it's a long ratchet, but you don't need to really crush them down or anything like that. Although maybe these bolts, by the time you get them almost all the way in, you might be ready to just really want to do something. Keep your cool. It's just a car. You could write a strong letter to Subaru if you wanted to. They probably won't care.

Got a little clip here. If you want to you can replace this one, or you can just take this one off. You do your Boo Boo. Let's take a look at it and see if it's... it looks like it's probably pretty easy to pop off of there. Since I got a new one, might as well use it. Just going to get this one out of here, hopefully. Here we are. It's what the old one looks like. This is just going to press right in. It's got little finger locking clips. A little wiggle, a little tug, it's going nowhere. Cool. A brand new clip on this. I'm just going to press it into our hole. It's the oblong hole, not the circle one, obviously. Can't put that in there. It goes all the way over here. Press her in. Put this on here. Give it a little tug, make sure it's locked in. Needs to be locked in, very important.

Here, our little push clip. I'm just going to put it back in the hole we took it from. It's happy there. There we go. This is nice and tucked up against here. ABS wire is secured away from everything. If you ended up breaking any of these bolts or the ABS wire can flop around, you're going to need to figure out how to get it secured. You can use something like a wire tie or whatever you need to do. Just take a peek, double check to make sure we got everything on there. Now, we'll go ahead and we'll put the wheel back on and torque it up.

It's time to get the wheel up. We want to make sure that we're lifting it carefully. We don't want to bend over and try to lift with our back. We want to just come over to the side of it, roll it right up your leg. It's nice and easy, then you can use your leg muscle and your ab muscle. Just lift her right up. It's easy peasy. No pain, no strain on the back.

I've got all these lug nuts bottomed out. I didn't tighten them up very much, just hand tight, bottom them out. I'm going to bring the vehicle back down so the wheel is just barely touching the ground so it can't spin, and then I'm going to torque these up in a star pattern. Here we go. We're going to get this puppy torqued. We're going to use our 19mm. We're going to go in a star pattern. We're not going to go in a circle. Circles are nice and everything, but stars are pretty. One, two, three, four, five. Just like that. The reason for that is so when we're tightening the wheel, if it's kind of cocked a little bit or off to the side, just kind of angled and it's not sitting perfectly straight up against the rotor/hub, and you go ahead and you torque going around in a circle, it might just be kinked.

Now, you drive it down the road, hit a bump, whatever you might do, the wheels doing this and then it gets looser, looser, looser. All your lug nuts loosen up, eventually your studs break, your wheel comes off. Big issues. Anyway, star pattern, crisscross, whatever you got to do. 88 foot-pounds with my 19mm.

I did star, and then I just went around again because, well, that's just how I do it. I want to make sure it's good to go. Now, we've completed our service. Pretty easy.

Thanks for watching. Visit for quality auto parts shipped to your door. The place for DIY auto repair, and if you enjoyed this video, please click the subscribe button.

Tools needed for replacement:

    Materials, Fluids, and Supplies

  • Rust Penetrant

  • Ratchets & Related

  • Socket Extensions
  • Torque Wrench
  • Ratchet
  • 1/2 Inch Breaker Bar

  • Screwdrivers & Related

  • Flat Blade Screwdriver

  • Sockets - Metric

  • 19mm Socket
  • 10mm Socket

  • Specialty Tools

  • Plastic Fastener Remover

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