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Toyota Corolla Basic Maintenance Questions



  • I have a 1989 Corolla DX four-door sedan with the 4AF engine. Recently the charge light and brake light came on simultaneously, and the alternator clearly is not delivering charge because the battery runs down in a day or two. This is with the original alternator, and I think the brushes wore out. (Sixteen years...)

    The thing is, I just changed out the alternator (for a junkyard special) and though the warning lights are no longer on, I still get no charge out of the alternator.

    The obvious answer is that I just got a bad alternator. But I'm wondering if anyone knows of another problem -- perhaps a wiring fault -- that might cause these symptoms. (In case anyone's wondering, I haven't checked for blown fuses yet; I lost the daylight before I got to that point.)
  • skmgskmg Posts: 1

    I have a similar problem, can you please share what you did to rectify. I have a 99 corolla VE with 75000 miles on it.

  • shengsheng Posts: 1
    :cry: Just found out my Corolla 2003's dipstick for transmission fluid is missing. It looks dirty around without the dipstick's protection. Fluid still looks good in clear pink. I have never thought about it that the maintainance guy in Toyota dealer may forget to put it back more than 6 months ago. But it does happen. Now I have to order it from the Toyota---cannot blame them. :mad: Anybody can tell me do I need to flush the transmission completely?
  • I have a 95 toyota corolla; bought it in '98, never had problems with it until now, after owning the car for almost 8 yrs, the check engine :surprise: signal shows up. I just replaced a new battery, had an oil change a month ago, and everything else seems fine. All the answers I'm getting from others is that it could be anything. Should I just wing it out and see if the sign goes away within a few days or take it to a body shop and have them check it out? Hopefully I'll get a good response from anyone. Thanks for your help guys! I appreciate it! :D
  • Hi, just bought my 06 LE auto. Does it need some break in period for be better maintained? Thx.
  • mcdawggmcdawgg Posts: 1,666
    See the owner's manual.
  • I took my 2003 Corolla S in for an oil change today it has 44,400 miles and I bought it in May 2002. 3000 miles ago I got the 40K maintenance and inbetween I got the transmission flushed. This time they are telling me I need to replace the drive belt ($99), coolant flush ($129) and replace PCV valve ($40). Also they recommended to Clean and adjust rear brakes ($55). Are these things recommented at this milage or are they trying to rip me off? Are the prices resonable to what other people have paid at the dealer? Thanks.
  • mcdawggmcdawgg Posts: 1,666
    I would drain and fill (not flush) coolant every 30k, drain and fill (not flush) automatic transmission fluid every 30k, if stick, then do a drain and fill every 60k.

    Forget about the rear brakes for now - not necessary - have you done a pad change to the fronts? I am guessing not, at that low miles. I had my front pads changed at 75k, rear shoes are still fine. Mine is a stick, so my brakes will last longer. Is yours an auto?

    PCV valve is a $5 part, takes me 5 minutes to change it. I would change it if I were you. Very easy to do yourself with just a little know-how.

    Prices at my local dealership - ATF drain and fill about $75, coolant drain & fill $45, serpentine belt sounds about right. But I changed my serpentine belt at 5 years (60k miles) because I could see some cracking. I don't know about yours, but I would be a little skeptical at that mileage/age.
    Don't pay $129 for coolant flush - just drain & fill for about $40-$60.

    Just look in your owner's manual supplement - it lists the factory recommended maintenance for specific time/miles. - do this and you'll be fine.
  • HI,

    I too just had this happen to me. I also have a 99 Corolla CE with under 45000 miles on it. Please let me know if you heard anything. Thanks!!

  • eh, sorta right sorta wrong.

    high octane gas is just more stable/predictable gasoline. its not any less explosive than the lower octane. So, high octane should not lower your milage at all.
  • robhillrobhill Posts: 1
    Hi, I have a 2000 Toyota Corolla with approx 59,000 miles on it. I recently took it in to the Toyota dealership for a check-up and they said the rear brakes only have 20% of their life left (aka, 80% worn).

    They said I didn't need to replace them yet (I didn't), but I was wondering how much longer they would last. I am under the impression that rear brakes last much longer than front brakes, but was hoping for some insight on how much longer the rears would last.

    Any info would be much appreciated. Thanks.
  • poliva2poliva2 Posts: 25
    The owners manual dosent tell you *^&%.
  • mcdawggmcdawgg Posts: 1,666
    Our '99 and '01 manuals state to not exceed 55 mph, don't use the cruise control, vary your speed (don't drive long periods at the same speed), don't red line it, for 1,000 miles. Also, don't hit the brakes too hard (if you can avoid it) for the first 200 miles. The real key point is to vary your speed!
  • poliva2poliva2 Posts: 25
    Im a little confused.My 2006 Corolla Manual says " Your Vehicle does not need an Elaborate break in period". Ive been flucuating between varying speeds between 50 and 60 MPH. The drivers on the parkway hate my gutts.
  • beernutbeernut Posts: 329
    The break in procedure recommended by mcdawgg is not elaborate. As he summarized, just vary the speed - don't lock it it for a long period. I personally wouldn't think 1000 miles is needed. Maybe only 500. Where does the 1000 come from mcd?
  • mcdawggmcdawgg Posts: 1,666
    From '99 owner's manual.
  • poliva2poliva2 Posts: 25
    This stuff is Da Bomb!! Gauranted!!!
  • beernutbeernut Posts: 329
  • rideboyrideboy Posts: 7
    I have a 2003 Corolla that's coming up to the 30,000 mile mark.The dealer's advisor said that I should have the fuel filter replaced,for the tune of $95.00.
    Is he blowing smoke, or is he correct?
  • beato1beato1 Posts: 2
    i had just recently visited my local toyota dealer for parts. i asked about corolla 2003 fuel filter. i was told that the filter is inside the gas tank and does not need to be replaced--it is permanent. thanks.
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