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Toyota Corolla Maintenance and Repair



  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,404
    here's my two cents, as best I can do without viewing the car itself.

    water pump -- easily diagnosed with a coolant system pressure test--it's either leaking or it ain't.

    valve cover -- based upon what? Oil leak? How bad? could the valve cover be gently snugged up by tightening the bolts carefully (not too much!)?

    intake gasket -- if this were leaking, the car would not be running well--rough idle.

    BG fuel --upsell, forget that

    battery (already changed last year) -- a battery shouldlast 5 years. If your battery hasn't been "load tested", then nobody actually knows its condition.

    plugs -- if it's time to do them according to the book, then okay.

    BG transm -- I never recommend additives in the transmission.


  • terceltomterceltom Posts: 1,017
    I currently have three Corollas and have had others in the past; that is why I never had my cars in the garage unless there was an obvious problem. Those dealer checks are just a racket for them to make money. It's a Toyota ! It doesn't need all that crap or extended warranties for that matter.
  • Thanks for your reply, one element continues to stand out ie the electrical element its as though when the steering jams there is a power drain caused by an electrical issue. As far as I am aware the non of the parts you mention include electrical components, unless they are impacting on one of the steering sensors
    Thanks again,
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 44,404
    Well your original comment seems to imply that the engine keeps running while this is happening, so I didn't mention a power failure to the ignition.


  • Thank you for your input, and detailed message. It really helps. I will follow those steps.
  • That is so true! You are right, I should be more careful from now on. If it's not broken, don't fix it! Thank you.
  • compensatecompensate Posts: 212
    We just bought a used 2011 Corolla for our daughter. It only had 10,700 miles on it. The only downside is that it had roll-down windows (shocked to find these on a 2011 model year of any car) and all manual door locks (also amazed at this).

    I know that converting to power windows will be a huge expense, so I am not so worried about that. However, does anyone know how costly it would be to convert the car to electric door locks with a remote? On some cars I have heard they are nearly or fully pre-wired for such conversions.

    Can anyone provide any help on this?

  • Hey did you ever figure this out? I am having the same problem and trying to find a solution. I know it's a couple years late!
  • hoopitup2000hoopitup2000 Posts: 46
    edited August 2013
    Is it OK to leave the battery unhooked for 12 or so hours on an 05 Corolla? Took my battery out & can't get a new one till tomorrow. Any need to worry?

  • mcdawggmcdawgg Posts: 1,667
    no problem at all.
  • Hello,

    I just took my 1995 automatic car in for an oil-change and was given a list of things I needed to have done for a cost of $1,000 plus tax. It came as a bit of a shock since none of this came up when i had my annual inspection in June (from the same place).

    Can anyone advise whether this is a realistic list of maintenance things and if $1000 is a reasonable cost:
    Timing belt and water pump. Tune-up, power steering flush, coolant flush, battery service, tire rotation, fuel induction service.
    Many thanks.
  • backybacky Twin CitiesPosts: 18,682
    Is this at a dealer? That would explain the high price.

    How do they know the timing belt and water pump are due for replacement? 60k miles is a more normal time for that. Do you know if the car has had the timing belt replaced before? If so, it shouldn't need another one. If not, might not be a bad idea if you plan on keeping the car. I've seen dealers charge ~$400 to replace a timing belt.

    What's included in the "tune up"? Doesn't this car have electronic ignition? So what are they going to do, replace the spark plugs or ???

    If the car hasn't had a power steering flush or coolant flush before, might be a good idea, especially the coolant flush.

    What will they do on the "battery service"? Check it and clean the terminals maybe?

    What's "fuel induction service"? Are they going to put some overpriced fuel cleaner in? Is this a "dealer special" or does Toyota's recommended factory service specify it?

    All this... and no brake check or other stuff that might actually be useful??

    IMO much of this might not be needed, and even if it is, you could probably find a good mechanic who would do the work for a lot less.
  • Backy, many thanks for your reply. The quote I got was from a full-service auto repair shop (they don't sell cars) and when I asked him if the recommendations were based on the mileage or by actually looking at things he said both. I know I had my breaks replaced some time ago and a few other things -- i don't believe i've ever had the timing belt or water pump replaced. I hear that most people replace these two things at the same time because it's most efficient.

    So, it sounds like the timing belt and water pump are the most costly things to do. Perhaps I should get an additional quote or two from others.
  • terceltomterceltom Posts: 1,017
    I would agree with the timing belt and plugs(tune-up)for sure as you are definitely overdue for these services. Your lucky the timing belt didn't break yet as this is usually performed around 60/70 K miles. If it was never done I would also go with the coolant and powersteering, transmission flush and refill. Considering parts and labor cost should be closer to $700.00 then $1000.00 in my book.
  • Many thanks Terceltom. I feel like I'm getting a crash course in car repair. I read that a cooling system drain and refill is almost always done with a timing belt and water pump replacement. I'm going to get a second opinion from another local repair shop on cost/things to be done.
  • circuitsmithcircuitsmith Posts: 117
    edited November 2013
    If the timing belt hasn't been changed in 18 years you're running on a wing and a prayer.
    The belt degrades with time as well as mileage.
    Seven years is the usual interval.
    I'd also change the brake fluid every 3 years.
    Replace the thermostat and radiator cap every other coolant change.
    I would skip the fuel induction service if it's running OK.
    OTOH I would get the throttle body cleaned every 10 years.
  • fairshadowfairshadow Posts: 24
    edited November 2013
    I recently purchased used 2 year old 30k milage 2011 corolla LE from a dealer, while test drive I felt the brake was not responding and it was too soft. Dealer said they will inspect the brake. The inspection report noted the brake was Ok.

    After I took the delivery of car I saw the brake was too soft and the brake wont work until the pedal crosses first half and reaches the floor. Next day I took it to nearest different Toyota dealer for servicing. The dealer informed me that they drove the vehicle and found brake to be hard and ok.

    I can clearly see the brake is not working even at low speed of 5 mile until the brake pedal is pressed all the way down. The car is still in warranty. I cannot believe dealers and service department blatant lie that everything is OK. I have driven so many car to know how brake works. This car is too dangerous to drive. Seems both car dealer working in tandem to show that everything is fine.
  • It had a problem on the test drive and you bought it anyway??
  • sandman_6472sandman_6472 Coral Springs, FLPosts: 2,626
    Always hated our Toyota's brakes in the past and seems they are still lousy in that department. Glad I didn't go look at the new Rav4 as I will no longer buy a first year model again. I have sat in one at work and it seemed to drive nicely and have not seen to many at work yet to drive but one day I will. Used to love Toyota products years ago but they seem to have fallen behind their competition. Hoping the wife will check out the new Corolla next year as it looks nice from the outside and she needs to check out all that she can.

    The Sandman

    2014 Hyundai Tuscon SE/2005 Mazda 3s/2008 Hyundai Accent GLS/2009 Nissan Versa SL hatch

  • danielj6danielj6 Posts: 285
    I too used to like Toyota products, but I wouldn't purchase one any more. Now I own a Hyundai, and since I bought it half a year ago, I never looked back at Toyota.
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