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Toyota Sienna Maintenance and Repair (2004+)



  • toyotakentoyotaken Posts: 897
    In over 10 years of working with and owning Toyota's, this is pretty standard. The idle starts higher to get the engine warmed up more quickly (esp. in the last few years to get the catalitic converter hot) then drops back down to just maintain. Hope this helps.

  • maxhonda99maxhonda99 Posts: 1,289
    It's completely normal for your Sienna to idle at about 1,500RPM for a few minutes after you start the car when it is cold. Shifting it won't cause a problem with the tranny either.
  • 12051205 Posts: 6
    Has anyone had any good or bad experiences with after market replacement parts? Someone hit our van and damaged both front and rear bumpers and the head lights etc. Farmers Insurance claims they will fix it with after market parts. It is my understanding That their has been many problems with after market headlights such as fogging up, cracks in the plastic lens etc. Also I am not thrilled with the fact that I paid 36K a little over a year ago with the extended warranty and now have what I feel perhaps are second rate parts about to be installed so the insurance company can save some bucks. The accident was not our fault and Farmers has no contract with me......just the person they insured. I'm not sure why I would want two reconditioned bumpers!
    Anybody with aftermarket experience?
  • ohresohres Posts: 46
    Thanks for your information.
    I am currently preparing an e-mail to a service manager, in order to get more attention on the problems I am having with my Sienna. I agree with you that the uneven wear should come from mechanical problem rather than the tire itself. The optimum suggested cold tire pressure on my XLE Ltd AWD is 35psi, posted on the pillar of the driver side front door. I check tire pressure quite often at home with a quality pressure gauge and always follow the pressure and rotation guideline posted on the vehicle. On my Subaru, the pressure on the front tire is higher than the rear one. On my Chrysler T&C AWD, all are 35psi cold. I never have any uneven wear problem on the two AWD vehicles. On my Sienna, however, I found the uneven wear problem so early such that I had to mention the problem when the vehicle was in for the 5000 mile service. Did you find any written guidelines about the 2 week tire pressure check? If it is not written clearly then they cannot say that it is your fault. After 10k service (two tire rotations), two tires show more feathering patterns than the others. I am wondering if the driver side rear wheel is somehow related to the problem. Toyota repair manual suggests that any bad suspension parts have to be replaced if the toe-in or the camber are not within the specified value. I will post an update after talking to the service manager. Thanks.
  • ohresohres Posts: 46
    Thanks for your info.
    I will carefully monitor the problem whether it has any relation with the gas level.
  • vgrinshpunvgrinshpun Posts: 36
    Do not waste your energy figuring out whether aftermarket parts are inferior to original manufacturer's parts. (The response to this question is obvious) Your efforts should be aimed at making Insurance Co. pay for OEM parts. They will after you insist. It is their business approach to sort out "soft" car owners by creating impression that they will not pay for OEM parts.

    I would recommend finding good Toyota dealership with body shop, state to them that you will not accept aftermarket parts, and let them deal with insurance. That is what I did with MY OWN INSURANCE CO.
  • clover1clover1 Posts: 4
    I just purchased a 2005 and took delivery of the vehicle in May 2005. I took the car home on Mothers Day. When I came home I went over every side of the car to ensure it did not have any abnormalities. Well I did find a few in the right passenger side fender area and hood. I informed my sales agent as to the issues, which were a cracked right headlight, scratches on the bumper and hood. I could not see this damage when I was in the dealership because it was raining and due to the fact that when the agent parked the car he directly parked it up to a wall. He told me that I could set up an auto body appointment to have the car fixed, since it was brand new. The appointment was then made by the auto body shop for 16 and I picked up the car June 17. To make a long story short I received my car back from the Toyota Auto Body and they had to replace the front bumper, due to a stress issue and other issues, such as scratches. They also had to replace the headlight and repainted my hood. The technician then tells me I cannot wash or wax my car for 60 days, because they had to repaint my hood, which is now a mess. Whoever painted my hood scuffed the paint in areas, so now I have scuff marks on my hood, which is unacceptable. My next steps are to contact Toyota headquarters directly to let them know what I have been going through. I am going to tell them to take back the car back or give me another one. I am aware of the MA Lemon Law, but this is rediculous. When you buy a new car it should be in 100% condition. Has anyone out there had to deal with the headquarters directly or had issues such as this on a new car?
  • woodytwowoodytwo Posts: 42
    Thanks for the info. I ordered the Avid TRZ tires today. can't wait for the harsh ride with the Dunlaps to be a thing of the past.
  • woodytwowoodytwo Posts: 42
    In Canada, Toyota has issued an advisory on the Dunlop run flats. It apparently applies to tires with under 31,000 kms. They give you some kind of $ credit towards a new set of the Dunlop Run Flats.My tires have 41,000 kms with about 5,000 kms left on them. I didn't pursue the toyota deal (Service Mgr said even at my kms they would probably offer me something) since I am tired of the harsh ride. I'll replace with Yokohama Avid TRZ and keep one Run Flat as a spare with a rim that I'll buy.

    By the way, the Run Flats have been wearing very even. I have rotated these tires on my AWD every 8 to 12,000 kms and have not had a problem. I had an alignment done at 24,000 miles because of a slight pull to the left. Tire pressure was kept at (32 psi when I went in for an oil change; seems the boys see Sienna and automatically put in 32 psi even if they have to let some air out) 35 psi by myself checked every few months or 4000 kms. Tires however never leaked air. about 20,000kms the van was at full load capacity (as weighed on a Provincial hiway truck scale) and driven on long hiway trips.
  • woodytwowoodytwo Posts: 42
    I've just received a recall for the rust or scaling at the bottom of the front doors on my 2004 AWD LE. They say the fix is to apply some kind of "tape" to the bottom of the front and sliding doors to eliminate the "grinding of dirt and salt against the rubber seal".
    They estimate that this will take 2 to 3 hours to service. Has this recall happened in the USA? If so why does it take so much time to install the tape? Did they refinish the door first?
    Any info would be helpful before I call my dealer.
  • woodytwowoodytwo Posts: 42
    Please see my message on Toyota 2004+.

    I have alot of experience towing: from utility trailers to small and large pop -ups and with travel trailers. I lost a bet years ago with a friend regarding trailer weights and tongue weights but the experience was most valuable and have won a lot of bets since then. Most people that tow trailers have little or no information about the subject 2 weights. They continually underestimate these weights. (I was out 150 lbs on my tongue weight and that is how I lost the bet.)

    First of all, your tongue weight should be around 12 to 15% of the total trailer weight or else you will get trailer sway and /or bottoming out. The only way to really find out what the weight is, would be to weigh the trailer and the tongue weight. You can do this with a bathroom scale but it is detailed and frustrating. Find a truck scale somewhere and probably for $10 they will weigh your van front and rear axle separately and the trailer wheels and then the tongue weight. For the last one you need to unhook the trailer and rest only the tongue weight on the scale. If they have the capacity, a separate weight of each side of the axle would be helpful as well ( ie left wheel vs right wheel of each axle).
    What you will probably find from this is some of the following.
    - rear of van is carrying significantly more weight than front of the van.
    - either side of van is carrying significant more weight than the other side.
    - van is overloaded
    - Tongue weight is not within the 12-15% of total weight of trailer.
    - trailer weight is over the maximum for the trailer
    - either side of trailer is carrying significant more weight than the other side.
    You will probably find that re arranging some of your stuff can help in all situations except the overload. For this you have to remove some stuff.

    You will quickly discover your problem for bottoming out and will not need to buy new shocks or springs. I use my 2004 AWD LE ( and 1998 LE in prior years) in maximum load conditions without bottoming out except on the rare stretches of hi way where you find the quick roller coaster uneven pavement. But my axle weights on the van are approximately 300lbs difference in weight front to back and the trailer is evenly loaded so that the tongue is within the 12-15%. ( No. I don't weigh it each time. You will find that with your pop-up you are taking almost the same items each trip.)

    For those rare quick roller coaster uneven pavement, I use an air bag inside the rear coil springs. Should cost less than $75 in the USA and can be installed in 30 minutes by your friendly mechanic. I set the air pressure to a minimum 10 to 12 lbs and the only time these come into play is for this bouncing effect. The rest of the time, they just sit there waiting for the next roller coaster situation. Doesn't effect handling or ride of
    the van.

    ps don't forget that the tongue weight is part of the weight in determining the total van weight and also the total trailer weight.

    Good luck.
  • jipsterjipster Posts: 5,345
    I have read on other boards (any question for a car dealer ....perhaps?) stories similar to yours.It sounds as if it was in a minor front bumper collision...the party responsible probably thought no one would notice....until delivery of course.
    They absolutely need to take the car back and give you a new one.Having a repainted hood lowers the value of the van. Good luck clover1.
  • shepasmshepasm Posts: 1
    Does anyone know how to turn off the Maintenance Rec'q light in a 2004 Sienna? There has to be a way to do it without making a trip to the dealership.
  • vgrinshpunvgrinshpun Posts: 36
    I have received Toyota recall notice back in February.

    My notice, among other things, states the following: "Please remove any personal belongings from the vehicle, especially in the door trim storage pockets, as the Toyota technician will need to DISASSEMBLE THE DOOR TRIM PANELS to install the protective tape."
  • vgrinshpunvgrinshpun Posts: 36
    I have one of early Sienna LE AWDs (bought in April of 2003) with 2" "Hidden Hitch" hitch which I bought on-line and installed myself. I was also puzzled by the reports about bottoming out, since I have never experienced such thing. After reading quite a few reports from mainly FWD Sienna's owners, I conclude that this is not a problem for AWD models as much as for FWD models. My observations are as follows:

    1. AWD has 225/60R17 tires (27.63" Diameter) vs. 215/65R16 (27.00" Diameter) for FWD models. If body geometry for AWD=geometry for FWD, that means that AWD ride 0.32" higher than FWDs.

    2. AWDs are equipped with RunFlat tires which because of their rigid construction, in response to road irregularities, deform significantly less than regular tires.

    3. AWDs weigh about 200 lbs more and therefore most likely have stiffer springs.

    There is one additional factor, which may be the culprit: unscrupulous installation. My hitch has total of six bolts (3 on each side), each of which require rather high 103 torquing, has lowest point about 9.75" off the level ground, and sits entirely under the bumper (I.e. does not protrude back from under the bumper).
  • heywood1heywood1 Posts: 839
    I called both Toyota and Dunlop regarding these tires for AWD Siennas. I indicated to the Toyota customer service agent that I was fully aware of the long list of internet complaints, and wondered if Toyota had issued some kind of service bulletin. The service agent immediately gave me a stock reply that Toyota does not warrant the tires, and I should contact Dunlop directly.

    I contacted my local Goodyear/Dunlop dealer, who told me that the Dunlop DSST tires have a limited warranty, because they are 'high-performance tires'-- and that Toyota salespeople don't know/haven't mentioned this minor detail to customers.

    He did tell me that I could bring in the van for evaluation, and If--and only if--the tires were worn prematurely (but NOT unevenly), there is a replacement warranty for tires with fewer then 30K miles.

    I'm not holding my breath, as I had winter treads on this van for half of the 25K on the odometer-- and this will be very difficult to prove. That being said, I'm glad my van isn't an Odyssey-- and my tires aren't PAX.
  • laneysmomlaneysmom Posts: 2
    We have been experiencing the exact same problem. We have a 2004 Sienna LE FWD with 23, 300 miles. It was taken to the dealership three times and of course "Could not duplicate the problem" hummmm...imagine that. So, I've now been dealing with the "Customer Experience" and I'm not sure that is helping. I believe Toyota needs to step up and back their product and correct this problem. It's a bit uncomfortable driving a new vehicle and it makes a clanky sound when accelerating. My husband says it is damaging the engine and Toyota indicates that on page 364 of the manual. So, if they know it's a problem...fix it. I bought a Mini Van not a Sports Car and it doesn't make any sense to purchase a new vehicle to buy HIGH octane for my grocery getter...especially with the fuel prices these days. OUCH! We are trying to get the problem fixed. Hopefully, Toyota will stand true and make good as a Company with integrity, but I will not hold my breathe. Otherwise, we are getting rid of the grocery getter. ;) :lemon:
  • laneysmomlaneysmom Posts: 2
    I couldn't have said it any better!
  • jamesgoonjamesgoon Posts: 1
    I have a 1999 Toyota Sienna LE. The engine light came on and I took it to Autozone and the diagonois was PO155 the Oxygen Sensor 1 in Bank 2. My two questions are:
    1. The OEM version of this Oxygen Sensor is ~$130.00. Are there any recommendations on which 3rd party brand is good and the best place to buy it at the best price?
    2. Where is this Oxygen sensor located for me to change it? Be explicit. Accessible from the top or bottom of the car? Will I need a special wrench to unscrew it?

    Thank you for you help
  • clover1clover1 Posts: 4
    Thank you Jipster for your response. I contacted Toyota headquarters yesterday, because I never heard back from the dealers auto body shop. I am not going to stop until they replace this car. I spent over $30K for it a month ago and they have the nerve to think I will accept their botch job. Once they knew the damage the dealer really should have taken it back.
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