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Toyota Sequoia Maintenance and Repair



  • arslanarslan Posts: 36
    I purchased the dealer's maintenance plan in 03 for $800. The package included one-time rust proofing, oil and filter changes, lubrication, topping off of fluids, tire rotations, general vehicle inspection and two hand car washes per year for as long as I remain the owner of the vehicle. I pay only a $7 environmental fee every time I bring in my Sequoia for an oil change. I've got 92,000 miles and generally get the oil changed every 3,000 miles.

    I also get discounts on the major service plans (15, 30, 45, etc.), which, btw, includes transmission fluid, engine coolant and transfer case drain and refills every 30k.
  • arslanarslan Posts: 36
    All you have to do is type "VSC" in the search for messages space to notice that this is common problem with the first generation Sequoia.

    In my situation, the VSC TRAC, TRAC Off, and parking brake lights have turned on intermittantly since I purchased my Sequoia brand new in July 03.

    When on, it indicates that there's a problem somewhere in the traction control system or the skid control system. So neither system should work when both lights turn on.

    Toyota's solution has been to replace the system, but at a substantial cost to the owner. I believe some owners here have complained that this solution is only temporary. Eventually, the lights will turn on again.

    One person here suggested that the system requires "rebooting," like you do to a computer that's frozen or acting abnormally. This requires you to disconnect the battery. In so doing, the "bad" memory is erased. This solution has worked for me!

    But even though the system is now working without problems (parking brake light remains an issue), there's always the possibility that the system could fail again. I only hope the lights don't turn on when I'm driving on a highway, as some here have reported. Fortunately for me, the lights turn on time and again at 5 mph.

    How long has the vehicle overseas? It was the subject of a recall in 2006-2007, due to defective ball joints, which Toyota replaced free of charge. You should look into it.
  • Arslan,
    Thank you for taking the time to answer my question in a such thorough manner. I've checked the NHTSA website for recalls, and the seller indicated that he had the ball joint recall done. He had this car in South Korea for one year and this VSC Trac problem came to "light" shortly after his arrival here. I've actually recommended to him that he should try the "reboot" method. If I had the expensive Toyota dealer even as an option, I think I would go ahead with the purchase, but I'm not so sure anymore. I can get genuine Toyota parts online and have them shipped here, but finding a Korean mechanic who can work on Toyota is a pure gamble.
    I may opt to wait, since our 2004 Sienna seems to be holding up well after being here for a year.
    Thank you again for your response.

    US Naval Officer in South Korea
  • I have a 2002 Sequoia Ltd. It has 107k miles on it. We've had lots of annoying problems with the car (rear door handle broke twice, power antenna motor broke twice, cd changer broke, major leak in rear door twice (the carpet soaks up water and does not dry out), etc. The latest is that the catalytic converter may need replacement. I don't know enough about cars and maintenance to know if this is premature. Can anyone offer any advice? Our service tech reset the engine light but it came back on after a week.

    Is there anything else that could cause this indicator to appear on the computer? We've been considering getting a minivan (3 small kids) but I've been resisting because I don't want to take on another major car payment (just paid the Sequoia off last year). Is it worth it to spend the $1500 to replace the catalytic converter (is it typical of this age/mileage car), or is this just a sign of more trouble to come? I know I'm looking for generalizations but I just need an idea of what to expect.

  • Dear Roger,
    I have a 2005 with the same problem. I called dealer who acted as if he had never heard of the problem. I called two other owners immediately and they had same problem. I took car to dealer and they said I would have to have all new mechanisms for $450. Next, I took the car to a local independent mechanic who adjusted and lubricated it and since then, I have had no problem.
    Mine only acted up in cold weather and since adjustment,I have had it in up to 20 degree and still no problem. Good luck!
    I have learned, Toyota likes to replace, not repair!!
  • try to push your VSC botton for 3 second
  • I paid 23K for an 02 back in 2004. No regrets. I've had issues with the same VCS, TRAC, and ABS lights. Whenever the appear......I keep driving. When I stop and restart the car they are gone and stay gone for sometimes weeks or months. Never had any type of issues from it. I've replaced the A/C (wow! $$$$), replaced the rear hatch latch, left door handle, Oxygen sensor....hmmm, I think that's it.
    Regardless, it's still one of the best cars I've driven and most :) importantly my wife likes it.
  • 72heaven,
    Thank you for your advice. My wife overruled me and we're buying a 2003 VW Passat. The Sequoia seller told me yesterday that he's getting a new Yaw Rate Sensor. Since there's no Toyota maintenance facility here, he's ordering the part online and having it installed at a Lexus maintenance shop. He told me that he need to get the car aligned or something.

    I'm sure the Passat has it's own short-comings, but there are 3 VW maintenance shops in Seoul area.
    Thanks again.
  • jim39tjim39t Posts: 11
    I am the original order of a 2001 SR5 with only 6,300 miles, and the only maintenance it has had is yearly change of oil and filter, and new tires (the originals had dry rot after 5 years). It's always been garaged, and there's no rust.

    When I got the new tires, I asked them if they'd replace the transmission fluid, as I thought it was about time. They refused! They said it made no sense with a car with such low miles.

    So I emailed a couple of local Toyota service departments, and asked them what service I should get on a 7-yr-old car with such low mileage, and they never responded.

    Does anyone know what would be prudent for me to do? New spark plugs? Change transmission oil? Any rubber seals or gaskets that might fail due to rot like the tires rotted?

    ANY suggestions would be most appreciated!

    Thanks much,

  • First off Jim......WOW.

    How did you come across this great find?

    Second, if it was me and I came across something like this then I would replace all the fluids, belts, gaskets, tires, and plugs. I can't believe a dealer would refuse to make some extra money off of you. I believe I would try it at another location and tell them it has 106,300 miles instead. It shouldn't matter to them.....and it's none of their business.

    My two cents...
    2004 Seqouia Limited, 78,000 miles
  • harboharbo Posts: 136
    Jim that's a dandy ...... I WANT TO BUY IT >>>> >......... !!

    My 02 Sequoia just hit 100,000 and feels like it will go to 250,000 and I have a buyer.

    Enjoy some traveling .........

  • jim39tjim39t Posts: 11
    mikey and harbo,

    Thanks for replying. I'm the original owner (bought it in April, 2001) and I don't get out much, I guess.

    "I would replace all the fluids, belts, gaskets, tires, and plugs." That sounds about right to me. I was kind of surprised that one service location (a Goodyear dealer who replaced the tires about a year ago), refused to change the transmission fluid.

    I'll email Toyota's service dept. and see how much $$ they want do what you suggested, Mike. Meanwhile, I stopped by a Toyota dealer yesterday and saw the new Sequoia and didn't like what I saw, unfortunately. The truck has now become too big for my needs, and I was disappointed with the interior. So I do want to do some preventative maintenance and hang onto my current Sequoia, which I've grown fond of, actually.
  • jim39tjim39t Posts: 11
    Heard back from Toyota's service dept. They suggested the regular 30,000 mile maintenance (change fluids, oil change, rotate tires, spark plugs, AC refresher, balance all tires, check the clean battery terminals, pkg brake, fuel induction) and want $564 for the work. That sounds like a lot to me; would an independent repair shop be much less expensive?
  • I HAD(just traded it in for an 08 Limited Sequoia), 2001 SR5 Sequoia and I had the same thing happen with the rear hatch mechanism. Could not get it to open. Took it back to the dealer and the autobody dept fixed it(they had to replace the mechanism). They did not however charge me anything and I did not have any extended warranty, etc. It was never even a mention of me having to pay for it. The guy told me this had happened to quite a few of them as it seems like where the mechanism is located, it gets wet easily as water pools around it.

    I assume you are referring to the rear hatch door, not just a rear passenger door!
    Good luck, JD
  • There's' an interesting coincidence. Why do Toyota's need A/C refresher? Had a service writer tell me that Toyota A/C's don't have a dryer? I have a 06 Rav and the A/C has been smelling musty for over a year now.
  • Do a brake flush, this is recommended every 3 years regardless of the mileage and have the battery condition checked if it is still the original one then you might end up replacing this.
  • jim39tjim39t Posts: 11
    Thanks, vmallari; your recommendation's the kind of info I was looking for, and that won't require my truck being in the shop for 5 hours (that's how long Toyota said it would take for the 30,000 mile service).
  • gr8jpngr8jpn Posts: 3
    What my symptoms were, and how I fixed it.. in case it helps others.

    I have a 2001 Sequoia Limited 4x4 - My VSC off, and VSC trac lights were stuck on.. so was my emergency brake light (no the e-brake was not engaged) on rare occasions they were off when I started my car, but always came back on.

    I took it to the dealer on Friday, and the diagnosis was: that my rear brakes were bad (less than 10 to 20% left) and this is causing my light problems.. they wanted $280 for the rear brakes. (they also said my fronts had left than 40% left) I declined their offer and elected to repair myself. (I was stuck paying a $47.50 diagnostic fee)

    I went to a local auto parts store, and purchased semi-metallic pads for the rear for $40, and cermaic for the front for $40.

    I removed the wheels, and replaced the pads. Rotors appeared to be fine.

    I had also been reading online on these forums about a speed sensor on the axle that can get metal on the magnets cuasing improper reading and thus giving me the same errors. So I followed the advice, and carefully removed the 10mm bolt, and gently pryed out the sensor on each for the four.. and sure enough 3 of the 4 had some metal or goop stuck on the pickup. I wiped them cleaned, and reinstalled.

    So far my lights are off, and my brakes seem to be greatly improved..

    So for $85 in parts (2 sets of pads, and 1 can of spray brakecleaner) + the $50 for diagnostic.. I am VERY satisfied how inexpensive this was to correct.

    Hope this helps others.
  • gr8jpngr8jpn Posts: 3
    Just curious to see if anybody knows the answer?

    I replaced the brake pads on the front of my 2001 Sequoia Limited.

    I purchased the cermaic pads at O'Reilly automotive (pretty common here in Kansas City) The pads I originally purchased were incorrect, (they were smaller) and I returned them to the store. The clerk noted that the 2003 pads were a different model, so he pulled those off the shelf to compare to my old pad. Sure enough, the 2003 pads were a perfect match to what I had.. so we exchanged my original purchase for the 2003 (same price).

    I have read online that some 2001 had a front brake conversion? I bought my Sequoia used, so I am unaware if these are the orignal calipers, or some recall or conversion?

    Of course it is also possible that O'Reillys computer is just wrong..

    Does anybody know if there was a recall or conversion on front brakes?
  • gr8jpngr8jpn Posts: 3
    I have a 2001 Limited with 95k miles, and my tires are wearing unevenly (I need and alignmment)

    It is probably time to replace the original shocks and struts, and I want to do this before I put on the new tires and have it realigned.

    Any suggestions for shocks? struts?

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