Subaru Apple CarPlay Not Working: 7 Reasons & 8 Solutions!

Last Updated on July 31, 2022

New Subaru vehicles and SUVs are equipped with Apple CarPlay, one of the most popular features on the market today. All-new Subaru cars are equipped with Apple CarPlay, beginning with the 2022 model year. 

But recently, some Subaru owners have claimed that the CarPlay is not functioning correctly sometimes. It’s not just they. I, too, have a Subaru with the all-new Apple CarPlay feature, which doesn’t seem to be working. Mostly, it just crashes.

From my personal experience of using the Apple CarPlay, I am familiar with some of its common issues. Also, I have contacted Apple CarPlay Support, visited several community pages, and got the below-described tips to make it workable.

  • Configure Subaru Apple CarPlay On iPhone
  • Enable Siri On CarPlay & iPhone
  • Restart Your iPhone
  • Reconnect Apple CarPlay On The Subaru
  • Update Software of Both iPhone and CarPlay 
  • Make Sure That The Bluetooth Is On
  • Check The iPhone’s compatibility

What’s the point of having issues like your Subaru Apple CarPlay not working? Subaru, are you listening? Just keep continuing!

What is Apple CarPlay?

Apple CarPlay is a feature that allows you to control your iPhone while driving. It gives you access to map directions, music, and other apps. You can also use Siri to control CarPlay. CarPlay is available on select vehicles and aftermarket stereos.

How Does Apple CarPlay work On Subaru?

CarPlay is an Apple initiative that was first introduced in iOS 7.1. While many newer cars come with CarPlay support built-in, some older models require an aftermarket head unit to use the feature. 

Subaru models that support CarPlay include the Crosstrek, Forester, Impreza, Legacy, Outback, and WRX.

  • To use CarPlay, you’ll need to connect your iPhone to your Subaru’s head unit using a Lightning cable. 
  • Once connected, the head unit will display various CarPlay apps on its screen. 
  • You can control these apps using the head unit’s touchscreen, physical buttons, or voice commands via Siri. 
  • Phone calls can be made hands-free, and texts can be read aloud and responded to using Siri. 
  • Maps will display turn-by-turn directions on the head unit’s screen, and music can be controlled using the head unit’s controls or Siri. 

 

Common Issues For Subaru Apple CarPlay

Common Issues For Subaru Apple CarPlay Not Working

Issue 1: Lack Of Update

If your Subaru is not running the latest software update, then it’s likely that CarPlay will not be supported. To check for updates, visit your Dealer or Subaru’s website for more information.

Issue 2: Incompatibility

If your iPhone is incompatible with CarPlay, it will not work in your Subaru. Check the list of compatible iPhones on Subaru’s website before attempting to use CarPlay.

Issue 3: Cable Length

If the cable you use to connect your iPhone to your Subaru is too short, CarPlay may not work correctly. Try using a longer cable or a wireless connection if possible.

Issue 4: Poor Cellular Signal

If you are using CarPlay over a cellular connection, then a poor signal can cause problems. Make sure you have a strong signal before trying to use CarPlay.

Issue 5: Power Management Settings

Some power management settings on your iPhone can prevent CarPlay from working correctly. To check if this is the problem, go to Settings > General > CarPlay and ensure that Low Power Mode is off.

Issue 6: Restricted Access

If you have restrictions set up on your iPhone, they may prevent CarPlay from working. To check if this is the case, go to Settings > General > Restrictions and ensure that CarPlay is turned on.

Issue 7: Missing CarPlay icon

It may be hidden if you don’t see the CarPlay icon on your iPhone’s screen. To check if this is the problem, go to Settings > General > CarPlay and ensure that the Show CarPlay Dashboard toggle is turned on.

Troubleshooting Steps For The Malfunctioning Subaru Apple CarPlay

1. Configure Subaru Apple CarPlay On iPhone

Some users have reported that they cannot use the feature properly on their iPhones. 

If you are facing a similar issue, then follow the troubleshooting steps below to fix it.

  • Check if your iPhone is running on the latest software version. If not, then update it.
  • Restart your iPhone and Subaru’s infotainment system.
  • Ensure your iPhone is properly connected to the infotainment system via the Lightning cable.
  • Ensure that CarPlay is enabled on your iPhone. To do so, go to Settings > General > CarPlay.
  • If the issue persists, then try resetting your iPhone. To do so, go to Settings > General > Reset > Reset All Settings.

2. Enable Siri On CarPlay & iPhone

If Siri is not working on your CarPlay, there are a few things you can do to troubleshoot the issue:

  • Go to Settings > Siri & Search and ensure that Siri is turned on.
  • Go to Settings > General > CarPlay and ensure that CarPlay is turned on.
  • You can check for updates by going to Settings > General > Software Update.
  • If you have an iOS device with a 30-pin connector, ensure you have the latest version of iOS.
  • If you have an iPhone 6s or later, make sure that “Hey Siri” is turned on.
  • Go to Settings > Siri & Search and ensure that “Hey Siri” is turned on.

3. Restart Your iPhone

If your Subaru’s Apple CarPlay is not working, the important thing you should do is restart your phone. This simple act can often fix the problem and get your CarPlay working again. Here’s how to restart your phone:

  1. Turn off your phone
  2. Remove the battery (if possible)
  3. Wait 30 seconds
  4. Reinsert the battery and turn on your phone
  5. Try using CarPlay again

If this doesn’t work, try restarting your Subaru’s infotainment system. To do this, press and hold the power button on the infotainment system for 10 seconds. This will reboot the system and hopefully fix the CarPlay issue.

4. Reconnect Apple CarPlay On The Subaru

On the car

  1. Make sure your iPhone is running iOS 14 or later.
  2. Go to Settings > General > CarPlay, then tap your car.
  3. If your car supports wireless CarPlay, ensure that your iPhone and car are connected to the same Wi-Fi network.
  4. Tap Forget This Car, then tap Forget in the confirmation message.
  5. Connect your iPhone to your car using a USB cable.
  6. If prompted, enter your car’s passcode.
  7. Tap Allow on your iPhone when asked if you want to allow CarPlay to access your iPhone.
  8. Tap Done on your car’s display.

On your iPhone, 

  1. Go to Settings > General > CarPlay, then tap your car.
  2. If prompted, enter your car’s passcode.
  3. Tap Allow on your iPhone when asked if you want to allow CarPlay to access your iPhone.
  4. Tap Done on your car’s display.
  5. On your iPhone, go to Settings > General > CarPlay, then tap Customize Buttons.
  6. Choose the buttons you want to see on your car’s display.
  7. Tap Done on your iPhone.

5. Update Software of Both iPhone and CarPlay 

If you have a Subaru with Apple CarPlay and iPhone, it’s essential to keep the car software and your phone up to date. Here’s how:

For the car software:

  1. Check for updates by going to Settings > General > About. If there is an update available, it will show up here.
  2. Connect your iPhone to the car via USB and select the “Update” option.
  3. Follow the prompts to update the car software.

For your iPhone:

  1. Make sure you have the latest version of iOS installed by going to Settings > General > Software Update.
  2. If an update is available, follow the prompts to install it.
  3. Once the update is installed, go to Settings > General > About and check that CarPlay is listed under “Available Apps.” If it’s not, restart your iPhone.
  4. Select the “Update” option.
  5. Follow the prompts to update the phone software.

6. Make Sure That The Bluetooth Is On

If you have a newer iPhone, there is a chance that you might not be able to use CarPlay if your phone’s Bluetooth is turned off.

  • To fix this, go to your iPhone’s settings and ensure that Bluetooth is turned on.
  • Once you have verified that Bluetooth is on, try using CarPlay again.
  • If it still does not work, you may need to restart your iPhone.

7. Check The iPhone’s Compatibility.

When you connect your iPhone to the CarPlay system, you may find that it is incompatible with your car. There are a few things that you can do to check the compatibility of your iPhone with CarPlay.

  • First, ensure that your iPhone is running the latest version of iOS. To do this, go to Settings > General > Software Update. If there is an update available, install it.
  • Second, check the CarPlay website to see if your car is listed as a compatible vehicle.
  • Third, try connecting your iPhone to another CarPlay-compatible car. If it works, the problem is with your car, not your iPhone.

8. Allowing CarPlay When The Phone Is Locked

When your car is locked, make sure CarPlay is enabled. As long as the phone is locked, the feature can’t be triggered while the screen is off. This may be resolved by going to Settings -> General -> CarPlay and selecting your vehicle from the list of supported connectors. Turn on Allow CarPlay While Locked and you’ll be all set!

CarPlay Does Not Operate On The Subaru Outback Model

While there are many reasons why Apple CarPlay won’t start up on your Outback when you connect the USB cord, here are a few common ones:

  • Make sure that CarPlay and Siri are both enabled in ‘Settings > Screen Time> Content & Privacy Restrictions> Allowed Apps,
  • Then restart your iPhone.
  • There is an issue with the Lightning-to-USB cable that you’re utilizing. Make sure you’re using the correct cable.
  • Using CarPlay with the USB port on your Outback is impossible. Try other USB ports.
  • The CarPlay issue is the result of a software bug. The Outback’s infotainment system should be reset to factory settings.
  • Your Subaru Outback is an older model and does not have Apple CarPlay capability.
  • CarPlay is only compatible with Subaru Outback models manufactured in 2018 and after.

Finally, Does the 2020 Subaru have Apple CarPlay?

The answer is yes! The 2020 Subaru has Apple CarPlay. This means you can use your iPhone to control various functions of your car, including music, navigation, and more.

Plus, with Apple CarPlay, you can stay connected to the internet while on the go. So if you’re looking for a technologically advanced and stylish car, the 2020 Subaru is a great option.

More Questions & Answers

Why is Apple CarPlay not working?

When the car is locked, make sure CarPlay is turned on. You can’t use CarPlay if you don’t have the screen on your phone on. 

Go to Settings > General > CarPlay, and choose your vehicle from a list of connections. Then, choose Allow CarPlay While Locked and press the OK button.

Does Apple CarPlay only work when plugged in?

Wireless CarPlay eliminates the need to use a Lightning connection to connect an iPhone to an in-car system, making it possible to use an iPhone with CarPlay without a Lightning cable.

Why does my Apple CarPlay keep disconnecting?

Inadequate vehicle audio, lost or damaged lightning connections, power management difficulties, or software faults may cause Apple CarPlay to disconnect or cease working. Find a new cable or a better location for your iPhone.

Does Subaru wirelessly support Apple CarPlay?

Wireless CarPlay and Android Auto connectivity are available in Outback vehicles equipped with Subaru’s Starlink infotainment system. 

For Subaru, this means that “even more material and applications may be accessed without the need to plug in your smartphone,” according to the company’s statement.

How do I connect wireless CarPlay to my Subaru?

Easy integration with Apple CarPlay. Simply plug your iPhone into the USB port on the Subaru Starlink, and Apple Car Play will be activated for you. 

After the connection is established, Subaru Starlink’s display screen will show a symbol for Apple CarPlay. Launch Apple CarPlay and connect your iPhone by pressing the Apple CarPlay symbol.

Does CarPlay require a USB?

However, you’ll almost certainly need a cable for your vehicle and phone to interact. There are just a few (expensive) automobiles that have specific wireless CarPlay connections (such as particular Audi, BMW, and Mercedes models).

The majority of autos need a USB cable to connect. There is likely a USB port near the center console of the vehicle.

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