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Toyota Avalon 2004 and earlier

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  • Any time I have the timing belt replaced I also replace the water pump. Once everything has been removed to access the timing belt the water pump is easily replaced. This makes the most sense if you are doing the work yourself. Some garages using the flat rate manual may double charge on labor. Ask in advance.

    I also preemptively replace my batteries at five years. They may last seven years but I don't want to find myself stranded in the Target parking lot in mid-winter. Having said that, my last battery only lasted four years. It nearly stranded me at my dentist's office. I went straight to Pep Boys, left the car running, and bought a new battery to take home.

    Leather seats will benefit from a good coat of Obenauf's Leather Oil. I was amazed at the results. The oil has a mild odor but it soon dissipates. I like to apply it in the heat of summer. Let it soak in for a day and then wipe off any excess.
  • finfin atlantaPosts: 586
    edited December 2011
    Here's a start: Belts and hoses are the most likely to fail without notice as time passes. Next in line is probably the battery and alternator. Ten years on belts and hoses is plenty. The battery, go for four years as in the prior post, then replace. Alternators can generally go over 100k, after that, who knows. We had one fail at 90k on a Honda.

    Watch for leaks under the car on the garage floor. NOTHING leaks on a Toyota except the AC drain. Flush and refill the radiator at 100k also if not done sooner. Replace the thermostat too. Transmissions can go 100k on the new ones with no trouble and no fluid change, yours probably 30k. These cars can go a long way with proper care... Good luck. :)
  • 106k I got a CEL P1155, talked to local repair shop, & they said it was Air Fuel Mixture Sensor, verses O2 Sensor. Only difference i see is the cost, true?
  • mikecraigmikecraig Posts: 12
    Re: 3608, Noise under dash
    I can now answer my own question concerning the noise coming from under the dash on the driver's side. What sounded like a motor hunting back and forth for a zero position was the Air Mix Servo Motor. I have replaced it and the noise has gone.

    The Air Mix Servo Motor is an assembly approximately 3" square by 3/4" thick. Within it are three gears and a small electric motor. The unit drives a lever that in turn operates the air mix flapper to control the mixture of cool air with warm air. When you raise or lower the cabin temperature using the toggle on the AC controls this is the motor you are controlling along with the fan speed. The new unit cost $115.66 plus $9.50 shipping. List price was $154.21. The Toyota part number is 87106-07071

    I disassembled the old unit and found it had spring fingers that make contact with resistive surfaces on the underside of the large gear (1-3/4" in diameter). The fingers had worn through the resistive surface to bare plastic. This probably lead to intermittent contact and the unit would hunt for its zero point.

    Removal was not too difficult. Remove the hood release. It's held by two screws in the lower plastic panel. Remove them and then snap out the cable. The lower plastic dash panel is held by a bolt on the lower left and a screw on the lower right. After removing them the panel can be removed by tugging down. It is held in place by four clips. Then remove the combination air duct and temperature sensor. It just unsnaps from the lower plastic panel. There is no need to disconnect the electrical connector. Next remove the connector for the 120V AC inverter switch. The lower dash panel can now be removed from the car. You can now access the three screws holding the Air Mix Servo. This required laying across the floor to get to the screws. I stacked two bags of tree mulch next to the driver's door to lay across. It helped but then I'm not a flexible as I once was. The top left screw holding the Air Mix Servo had to be removed by feel; I could not see it. Tip: Put the foot brake on. It will keep it partially out of the way. The arm on the Air Mix Servo fits into the damper control lever. It just pulls out. You will need to reinsert it on installation. Not a big deal, just be sure to do it. I found reinstallation to be a little easier than removal. Nothing was hard except blindly removing and installing that top left screw and laying on my belly through the front door while removing the screws.
  • mcclearyflmcclearyfl Posts: 149
    edited April 2012
    Mike, I haven't experienced the problem you describe, but thank you for the detailed procedure for replacing the servo. I plan to keep my 2003 for several more years, and this is a typical problem that occurs more frequently as miles accumulate. Is the specific brand of tree mulch important for use as a bed? I am getting older faster than the car. LOL.
  • mcclearyflmcclearyfl Posts: 149
    Once in a blue moon the speedometer on my 2003 XLS (130K miles) does not function. Upon restarting the car everything reverts to normal. With such an easy solution I don't plan to do any corrective work, but can anyone throw light on a possible cause? I live in Florida and the car is garaged at night.
  • You know the plastic cover between front and rear doors...the cover which covers the seat belt. This plastic cover at the passenger seat side came out. I tried fixing by pushing it back. It is not yet fit. It is still loose from the middle. Pls suggest how to fix it. Are there hinges that need to fit in grooves?
  • 03avalon03avalon Posts: 9
    edited September 2012
    Just changed (first time) the transmission filter and fluid on my 2003 Avalon; 123,000 miles. I am the original owner and have changed the fluid every 30k. Probably could/should have done this job sooner. Though very minor sludge in the bottom of the pan; quick, light wipe and it was gone. Very easy job, all parts have easy access. Need only open the drain (back/bottom of trans, faces to the rear), both diff and trans drain together. Remove and replace the filter (three screws). Replace the drain plug. Replace the pan with new gasket (supplied with the new filter). Refill with 4 quarts of a good synthetic (my preference) trans fluid. Drive away and enjoy the smoooooooth, effortless shifting. Man, I love this car, will keep it foreeeeever!!! Happy motoring to all.
  • I have a 2006 Avalon Limited. I have the factory VIP remote starter. It has worked perfectly since 2006, but now when I go to remote start it, it goes through the same routine, and when the lights flash the final time before it starts....nothing, it's doesn't attempt to turn over the car.

    The fob is fine and both fobs do the same thing. I can't even find the remote starter under the dash, so I'm guessing it's integrated into the car somewhere, unlike the aftermarket ones.

    Has anyone had this happen, and if so, what was the problem?

    The only thing I can think may have caused it, is that I had to get a jump start recently. Could this have done something? Everything else is working fine.
  • Is there a way to adjust the sensitivity of the automatic headlights on a 2002 Avalon? Mine wait way too late in the evening to turn on.
  • elguyoelguyo Posts: 1
    2003 Avalon XLS with 110K miles. Have clear very light brown fluid leaking through holes in front cross member passenger side after driving. The fluid evaporates or soaks into the driveway after a few hours. The fluid is of a watery slippery consistency and smells like rubber hose. Unable to visualize where it is exactly coming from. Seems to be in between the cross member and the AC compressor. Suspect brake fluid? Is there a brake line that runs in the area of the front cross member? Any help would be appreciated.

    Thanks
  • 5539655396 Posts: 530
    edited March 2013
    Is it water soluble or does water bead up like oil? Have you changed your water pump /timing belt? If you're really lucky, maybe it's a hose leak. My guess would be water pump. I have 115k on our 03 and none has been done, but it's been pampered.
  • gtownegtowne Posts: 1
    It has 119k miles on it and still rides like a brand new car. I have always taken well care of it from top tires to rapid oil changes. My problem is when it rains water some how makes it in the back passenger side door. The seat gets drenched and the floorboard gets wet. The cup on the door on the arm gets full of water. I have no idea what to replace and what parts I need to make this leak stop. I've tried to put water hose on the door when its closed on top however im unable to pin point where the actual leak is coming from. I am no familiar with body work or mechanic work but would be willing to try to fix this on my own if I knew exactly what parts and the how-to.

    Please help.
    Thanks
  • mikecraigmikecraig Posts: 12
    Has your car always had this problem? You don't say where you live, but with the right weather conditions I've seen ice form around the door on a different car and had the rubber door molding tear when the door was opened. Have you carefully examined the rubber molding on both the door and the door frame? Of course you have. Never mind.

    I looked at my Avalon. For the door cup to fill with water it looks like the leak would have to come from the window seal. Roll the window down and have a good look at the window frame and seals.

    Another thing you might try is to attach some tissue paper along various points inside window and the door frame. It will quickly show any moisture. A little masking tape will easily hold it in place. Then perhaps go to a car wash and use a pressure wand to see if you can cause a leak. Can you get someone to sit in the back seat at the same time?
  • tjc78tjc78 JerseyPosts: 5,023
    It could be the sunroof drains have become loosened or clogged up.

    1999 Chevy S10 / 2004 Merc Grand Marquis / 2012 Buick LaCrosse

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