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Toyota Corolla Maintenance and Repair



  • Leo - I also have a '99 Corolla LE (53,000 miles) that is using excessive amounts of oil. Always changed oil on schedule. Dealer said shot rings. Took it to independent mechanic who ran some tests and they concluded that it was not the rings because the compression tests did not show any significant difference between cylinders. Took it back to dealer and they still say it is the rings. I suspect it could be sledging due to poor engine design as with other oyotas. In any event, the dealer is overhauling the engine under warranty and I plan to drive it until the wheels fall off (again).
  • laksjlaksj Posts: 19
    I was startled today driving my 2003 Corolla back from work when, while going about 100 km/hr (62 miles/hr), I shoved the accelerator trying to overtake the car beside me quickly (to catch an exit I almost over-shot!), only to find the rpm shooting to almost 6000 with no extra momentum whatsoever! It happened once before 2 months ago, but I had just hit a bump at high speed and dismissed it as the reason.

    Has anybody had this happen to them? Is this normal, or should I be worried? I'll send the car to the dealer to have it checked, but I wanted to check your feedback here first.

  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,687
    what my Matrix does (same engine and trans)...downshift two gears if you hit the gas very fast at highway speed. One thing I have noticed about these "intelligent" transmissions is that they not only decide what to do by how far down you press the gas, but also by HOW QUICKLY you press the pedal. I have tried comparisons, pressing it down the same amount both times, once quickly and the other time gradually increasing pressure. The first time it quickly kicked down to second gear (5200 rpm or so) and the second time it almost didn't change gears at all, but shifted out of lock-up, and then to third at the last second. (never to second gear like the first time)

    It is normal for this car, but I do wish it were programmed to shift a bit sooner under normal gas pedal thrust, and not to shift to second at 100 km/h unless completely floored (and maybe not even then?)

    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • O.K., all you Rotten Egg complainers. Listen up. I called the nationally syndicated Clark Howard radio talk show last week and discussed the problem. My call was triggered by his monologue about only some of the most elite cars needing something more than the lowest octane. He suggested that I register my complaint with the NHTSA people - . (Suggestion - key it in once for the ENGINE, EMISSIONS category, copy it before submitting it, then enter it again under the ENGINE, EMISSIONS, CATALYTIC CONVERTER category. That way, they will see it two ways, and can't say we didn't enter it right. Limit, 2000 characters, so be succinct.)

    Clark also suggested that I make the same complaint to which has no character limit, near as I can tell.

    Well, the second one paid off. At least they were nice enough to respond, and here's what they had to say.

    "The engine in the Corolla is running too rich. There's not enough oxygen in the fuel mixture. The sulfur in the gasoline is being reduced to H2S rather than being oxidized to SOx. Call Toyota at 800-331-4331. To get EPA's assistance in the matter, call Sheena Dupree at 202-564-9414 who works on warranty issues for them. Or you can write the head of the office at the below address.
    " Margo T. Oge, Director
    " U.S. Environmental Protection Agency
    " Office of Transportation and Air Quality (6401A)
    " 1200 Pennsylvania Avenue, NW
    " Washington, DC 20460

    "Tell Toyota you are contacting EPA. That will get their attention."

    He signed his name, which I'll not repeat here.

    So later today I'll get the ball rolling. And now you too have something to work with, but please, Please, PLEASE be sure to report YOUR problems to those two (now three with ) organizations, too. Only if enough of us bellyache - and to the right people - will we get Toyota to fix a problem that never should be happening. FWIW, my neighbor bought an '02 Honda Civic just before I got the Corolla. Neighbor uses the cheapest unleaded gas he can find, and has ABSOLUTELY NO PROBLEM with rotten eggs smell from his exhaust. I bought the Corolla because I felt it was mechanically superior to the Honda. It doesn't need a timing belt replaced every xxx miles - Toyota went to a chain drive for the overhead cams, in '03, and the rest of the engine dates back several years, so the design is pretty much "proven".
  • laksjlaksj Posts: 19
    nippononly, that's exactly what happens with my corolla. If that's what Toyota calls intelligent, then I don't know how a "stupid" transmission would behave! Another couple of times of the engin suddenly shooting up to almost 6000 rpms like that and an engin rebuild may be needed!

    At any rate, thanks for the info. I'll try to take easy with my technoligical marvel from now on..
  • nippononlynippononly SF Bay AreaPosts: 12,687
    I am pretty tired of it shifting to second when I need some sudden acceleration on the freeway, so I have taken to hitting the "O/D lock-out" button instead....this seems to defeat its desire to shift down to second.
    The thing I really hate about "intelligence" is that if you are most of the time a light-foot like me, to save some gas, it will not shift aggressively at other times when you actually want some rapid acceleration. It assumes that once lazy is always lazy as far as shifting. I find myself shifting the gears on this thing almost as often as I used to shift my manual, and I can't understand how 90% of the drivers in the U.S. want one of these slushboxes (very aptly named, IMO).

    2013 Civic SI, 2009 Outback Sport 5-spd (stick)

  • mirrormirror Posts: 15
    I have had Check Engine light on for the same reason over the past year or so (I have Corolla'99 LE). I have not noticed any significant fuel efficiency loss. As far as pollution goes, just today I passed my first CO inspection with numbers half of the norm. I also was quoted around $350 for the repair. The check light is on most of the time. Once in a while I see it go off on its own for a short period of time. My only concern is that with the light constantly on some other problem should it happen will go unnoticed.
  • canoe2canoe2 Posts: 128
    89 Corolla, the oil alarm light turns ON. Anyone knows where is the pressure switch in engine ?
  • xcelxcel Posts: 1,025
    Hi All:

    ___A heads up for anyone that may have to change a tire after a flat on the road … I was attempting to rotate the tires on my 03 Corolla LE and I could not get any of the rims off the vehicle. The dealer ripped me for $40.00 on this and I am pissed. They were rusted to the hubs and had to be hammered off from behind. This was at the 42,500 mark but a year and the rims are rusted to the hubs? I have never experienced that before with any other vehicle ever and I hope you don’t either!

    ___Good Luck

    ___Wayne R. Gerdes
    ___Hunt Club Farms Landscaping Ltd.
  • jrct9454jrct9454 Posts: 2,363
    If this car has 42k miles on it, and this is the first time someone has tried to pull a wheel, then it is no surprise that it took a mallet to move them! I've had this happen on our Mercedes at less than 2500 miles. When I went to rotate the tires on our '03 Corolla, it too was stubborn about releasing the wheels - it took my rubber mallet to make it break loose - this was after only 3000 miles or so. Not all that unusual.

    It is a good point - don't wait too long to get all four wheels off the car, and the hubs scraped clean of rust - fiddling with this on a dark road in the middle of the night is not fun.
  • I have a 2003 Corolla LE and was driving it thru a shopping center slow. I notice every time I hit the gas pedal slowly, it would make a slight humming noise near the fuel pump area. It would stop making the noise when I come to a stop or speed up. It would only do it when the car is warmed up and pushing the gas pedal slowly. Is this normal or should I have it checked?
  • 2000 Corolla CE, about 25000 miles.
    Every morning after I start it and drive ~50 yards
    and step on the brake before entering road.
    Usually at this time there is a crack sound, and
    sometimes a little squeak. But I continue to the
    road and drive all day, the sounds almost don't
    come up any more. Is there some strange problem
    with the brake and do I need to fix it?
    Any help is appreciated.
  • i have a 2000 corolla with 53K miles on it. when i first start it up in the morning it's sluggish. i back out of the driveway onto the street, put it in drive, and hit the gas. at first when i hit the gas it doesn't respond at all, even if i floor it. i have to pump the gas, then the engine slowly responds. when i get about a block or so, it seems to be warmed up and drives normally.
    i had the fuel system cleaned with some sort of solvent, and i also changed the spark plugs. nothing has changed. any ideas?
  • I would like to know if I can use 1998 protege OEM steel wheels in my 1996 corolla? Both have 4x100 bolt pattern, wonder does it matter for the centre hole size? Or what else should I look at before I swap with the protege guy? Thanks
  • I'm looking for feed back before I buy a 04 Corolla. Any body in the north east using 87 octane in a 04 please respond, thanks.
  • grandtotalgrandtotal Posts: 1,207
    I have owned both an '03 (now gone to the scrapyard in the sky) and an '04. The '03 stank of sulphur, the '04 does not. The '04 also gets 5-6 MPG more.
  • Do you think that the 04 is getting better mileage do to engine tuning that my also improve the sulfer smell.
  • grandtotalgrandtotal Posts: 1,207
    It may be a coincidence, but it wouldn't surprise me if the two things are related.
  • is not universal in the '03's. Our 4WD Matrix in Massachusetts hasn't had this problem using regular gas, at least no more than our older vehicles ('87, '89, '94). It would be good if a bunch of '04 owners would report on this in this forum.
  • no sulfur smell. I was under the car changing oil on Sunday and even then I didn't get a whiff of eggs.
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