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Sulfur Smell from Toyota 4Runner

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Comments

  • btarterbtarter Posts: 3
    Just to let you know. I smell this terrible odor when all windows and roof are closed. At Idle also. There are times when I dont smell it at all. Very Rare and its worse when its humid.
  • tloke1tloke1 Posts: 185
    "You have been in other 4Runner forums bashing the 4Runner for months now"

    Huh? What other 4Runner forums?
  • neumie2000neumie2000 Posts: 133
    A recent quote of yours:

    "4Runners are about as bulletproof as a tin can. While they have enjoyed above average reliability ratings in the past that has slipped in recent years. The new 4Runners have been plagued with problems, many of which have been difficult to resolve. These have not just been for the new 2003 model year, the same issues have carried over for 2004 and 2005. The way Toyota addresses vehicle problems I'm sure you'll see the same for 2006."

    Any other questions?
  • tloke1tloke1 Posts: 185
    "Any other questions?"

    ONE other post does not constitute "bashing the 4Runner for months". And I do not consider posting the truth as "bashing". The new 4Runner has had more than its share of issues and is far from as reliable of a vehilce that some owners would like you to believe. What is frustrating is the fact that Toyota is not doing all that they can to resolve the problems.You can pretty much count on the fact that 2006 owners will be dealing with the sulfur issue.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,986
    Okay, let's stop the bickering. If you don't own a 4Runner, you may wish to participate in a forum dedicated to your own type of car. Peace please or I'll have to intervene. Last warning on this one.

    thanks

    Shifty the Host

    MODERATOR --Need help with anything? Click on my name!

  • When I noticed the smell on my new Limited V*8 2004 4Runner, I took it to the local dealer in Westminster MD, mentioned the TSB on it, and they corrected it for free. I don't know what the problem is with some of your Toyota dealers not wanting to fix it free. BTW, no problems since it was fixed in June 2004.

    PS. I used to own a Jeep Grand Cherokee. I now own the 4Runner mentioned. I am much happier with the 4Runner. The Jeep made me worried everytime I drove it. Not a very smooth ride compared to Toyota, and the engine is too loud.
  • tloke1tloke1 Posts: 185
    For many owners, the solution is not as simple as just performing the TSB. If that were the case you would not have people invoking the lemon law to get rid of their 4Runners. While the TSB has solved the issue for some, for hundreds (or thousands?) of others it has not. In addition, models that were manufactured after the TSB was issued still exhibited the problem, proof that Toyota has not taken care of it like they should have a long time ago. So far, all 3 model years of the new gen 4Runner have had the sulfur problem.

    For owners who have the sulfur problem, if your dealer does not seem to want to help solve the issue and wants to brush it aside, try another local dealer if one is nearby. Some dealers are a lot more helpful than others. Remember that you do NOT have to have warranty work performed where you bought the vehicle, ANY Toyota dealer can perform warranty work.
  • I have a 2003 4 Runner and I never had the Sulfer Smell. But when I had my back window down, I did notice a strange smell and knew it came from my tail pipe (the 4 Runner, not my tail pip) so i just rolled up the back window. I had the same problem with a pick up truck i had with a shell on it and i opend the back window. One thing i did notice was a rubber/oil burning smell coming from the back wheels. It was only some times, not all ways. Mostly when the VSC came on.

    Also, does anyone know when to change the timing belt on the 03 4 Runners. the manual didnt state anything and it only say's to change the belt on the V8 at 90k
    Called the dealer and they said it should be changed at 60K to 90K. Does any one know the exact milage or if it needs to be changed.

    BTW has anybody looked at the 03 owners manual. Man, its realy bad.

    image
  • I also used to own a Jeep GC before my 4Runner, actually only have the Jeep for 1 year and couldnt take it anymore, after a passenger window collapsed and the transmission was taken out for the 2nd time I lost my nerve at traded it in on a 2005 4Runner.
    I also have the sulphur issue and the tsb I got says nothing about a fix, just that lead contents in fuel have changed, and so I am in the process of trying different fuels, funny no matter how hard I drove the Jeep I could still drive with the windows open.
  • I own A 2005 v6 SR5. I bought at the end of July 2005 I also have that Sulfur Odor. Should I contact a Lemon Law Lawyer? Dealership is telling me to put better gas in it and also it is still in the break in period. Brian
  • Here is the service bulletin copy it and take back to dealer with you.EXCESSIVE SULFUR DIOXIDE ODOR
    Models:
    ’03 – ’04 4Runner (2UZ–FE)
    Technical Service
    BULLETIN
    June 14, 2004
    Some customers may complain of excessive sulfur dioxide odor on 2003–2004
    model year 4Runner (2UZ–FE) vehicles under the following conditions:
    �� Stop and go driving.
    �� Heavy acceleration.
    In order to reduce the sulfur dioxide odor, the Electronic Control Module (ECM)
    (SAE term: Powertrain Control Module/PCM) fuel cut control logic has been modified and
    a new catalyst is provided. Follow the repair procedure to reflash the ECM and replace
    the catalytic converter assembly.
    NOTE:
    For more complete understanding of the root cause, refer to TSB No. EG003–03
    “Sulfur Odor From Exhaust,” dated February 24, 2003.
    �� 2003 – 2004 model year 4Runner vehicles equipped with the 2UZ–FE engine
    produced BEFORE the Production Change Effective VINs shown below.
    MODEL PLANT DRIVETRAIN PRODUCTION CHANGE EFFECTIVE VIN
    Tahara
    V8 2WD JTEZT##R#40016279
    4Runner
    V8 4WD JTEBT##R#40037525
    Hino
    V8 2WD JTEZT##R#48004215
    V8 4WD JTEBT##R#48015016
    OP CODE DESCRIPTION TIME OFP T1 T2
    EG4004 Recalibrate ECM (PCM) Engine 0.8
    17410 50360 60 99
    Combo A R & R Catalytic Converter Assembly 0.2
    17410–Applicable Warranty*:
    This repair is covered under the Toyota Specified Major Emission Control Component
    Warranty. This warranty is in effect for 96 months or 80,000 miles, whichever occurs
    first, from the vehicle’s in-service date.
    * Warranty application is limited to correction of a problem based upon a customer’s specific complaint.
    ENGINE
    Introduction
    Applicable
    Vehicles
    Production
    Change
    Information
    Warranty
    Information
  • EXCESSIVE SULFUR DIOXIDE ODOR
    Models:
    ’03 – ’04 4Runner (2UZ–FE)
    Technical Service
    BULLETIN
    June 14, 2004
    Some customers may complain of excessive sulfur dioxide odor on 2003–2004
    model year 4Runner (2UZ–FE) vehicles under the following conditions:
    �� Stop and go driving.
    �� Heavy acceleration.
    In order to reduce the sulfur dioxide odor, the Electronic Control Module (ECM)
    (SAE term: Powertrain Control Module/PCM) fuel cut control logic has been modified and
    a new catalyst is provided. Follow the repair procedure to reflash the ECM and replace
    the catalytic converter assembly.
    NOTE:
    For more complete understanding of the root cause, refer to TSB No. EG003–03
    “Sulfur Odor From Exhaust,” dated February 24, 2003.
    �� 2003 – 2004 model year 4Runner vehicles equipped with the 2UZ–FE engine
    produced BEFORE the Production Change Effective VINs shown below.
    MODEL PLANT DRIVETRAIN PRODUCTION CHANGE EFFECTIVE VIN
    Tahara
    V8 2WD JTEZT##R#40016279
    4Runner
    V8 4WD JTEBT##R#40037525
    Hino
    V8 2WD JTEZT##R#48004215
    V8 4WD JTEBT##R#48015016
    OP CODE DESCRIPTION TIME OFP T1 T2
    EG4004 Recalibrate ECM (PCM) Engine 0.8
    17410 50360 60 99
    Combo A R & R Catalytic Converter Assembly 0.2
    17410–Applicable Warranty*:
    This repair is covered under the Toyota Specified Major Emission Control Component
    Warranty. This warranty is in effect for 96 months or 80,000 miles, whichever occurs
    first, from the vehicle’s in-service date.
    * Warranty application is limited to correction of a problem based upon a customer’s specific complaint.
    ENGINE
    Introduction
    Applicable
    Vehicles
    Production
    Change
    Information
    Warranty
    Information
  • I own a 2003 4Runner which I purchased new in Nov. 2002 with the obnoxious sulfur smell. I complained about the small bitterly to Toyota and posted numerous complaints with many agencies. When the 6/14/2004 EXCESSIVE SULFUR DIOXIDE ODOR TSB came out, I learned about it through an editor at the Plain Dealer who had written an 6/17/2004 article titled "Customers Driven to Make a Stink". The editor has read one of my complaints when doing his research. I immediately contacted Toyota and had the service outlined in the TSB performed including replacing the Catalytic Converter Assembly. I have not had a single incident of sulfur smell since. My understanding at the time of my service that it was a service of last resort only to be pursued when all other measures failed to satisfy the owner. Unfortunately I had to live with the smell for 1-1/2 years before finally being rid of it forever and the smell certainly diminished the pleasure of owning such a nice rig. Best regards everyone, Bill
  • I haven't visited this site in almost two years. That was after I took Toyota to Lemon Law arbitration and won.(for the smell problem). It seems like they still don't care. Maybe that's because their stock price busted $100. a share. Don't give up, your new car smell shouldn't be SO2 :lemon: (sulfur dioxide). You don't need a lawyer, just document every visit to the dealer, every phone call and comment, and do your research on the effects of SO2 and Toyota's negligence or inability to find a solution to this serious problem. If you want any info on this case or have any questions, I would be happy to try and help. :lemon: :lemon:
  • robg4robg4 Posts: 32
    Has anyone with a 2006 model noticed the smell? Wife has noticed a 'rotten egg' smell 3 or 4 times. Could that be the sulfur problem being referred to?

    Is it possible Toyota still hasn't fixed the problem or could this be something else?
  • scoti1scoti1 Posts: 676
    The rotten egg smell can be intermittent (i.e., you won't smell it all of the time). I had it in my Sequoia and noticed it mostly in stop and go traffic. Toyota has a TSB to replace the catalytic converter to remedy the problem. I don't know why they wouldn't just put this cat. converter in the new vehicles in the first place, since the replacement converter has been around for awhile. I am not sure if there is a TSB yet for the '06 4Runner. You can check with your dealer. At first the dealer may tell you that the problem is related to using regular gas and to switch to premium. I was already using premium gas, so my dealership did a little more research and found the TSB for the cat. converter replacement and this seems to have completely fixed my problem.
  • robg4robg4 Posts: 32
    Thank you for the info scoti1.
  • Please do not stop people from informing others about the quality of the Toyota 4Runner. My experiance with this vehicle was, and is, that it's got major systems faults. And no, there isn't anything the owner can do about it.

    What does Toyota need to do about it? Only one thing. Own up to it. Toyota refused to acknowledge IN WRITING that my car had a systematic transmission problem. Their customer service reps politely took my trouble report, gave me a trouble report number, told me that I'd never have to pay for a replacement transmission as long as I owned the car blah, blah blah. And then they refused to put any of their statements, mainly that I'd never have to pay for a transmission for this vehicle, in writing. "It's not our policy".

    Folks ought to know that, before they pay Toyota's "quality" premium and contrary to all the B$, Toyota is no better than other car makers.
  • Check Toyota ts bulletin may 27 2004 titled EXCESSIVE SULPHUR DIOXIDE ODOR 03-04 4 runner 1 GR-FE ENGINE.

    TOYOTA IS NOW REPLACING THE CATALYTIC CONVERTER.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright CaliforniaPosts: 45,986
    No problem complaining in detail and once or twice is fine and good for the forum...but hammering away day after day without solving something, and just to exercise a grudge...well...most visitors complain if someone does that. We all like to move toward some resolution, either finding a solution or going to arbitration or whatever.

    MODERATOR --Need help with anything? Click on my name!

  • My problem was intermittent also.There was a chance that it wouldn't happen if the lemon law arbitrators drove the vehicle. When I advised them that the problem was intermittent, they decided not to drive the vehicle, but made their decision on the facts of the case and witness statements. Toyota kept saying it was the brand of gasoline, but I documented trying at least 8 different brands and grades. If the replacement of the cc did the trick that's great, Toyota wouldn't even do that for me, that's why I went to arbitration.
  • slralslral Posts: 1
    I'm having the cat converter problem with my 2003 4 runner and the dealer is telling me that he can't just replace it - that I should try low sulphur gas. My argument is that a 3-year old car should not smell like sulphur and that they just need to replace the failing part. Any suggestions??
  • scoti1scoti1 Posts: 676
    Ask your dealer to check again for TSBs. The initial TSBs on the sulfur smell problem stated to advise the owner to change grade of gas. There is another TSB that came out that actually calls for replacing the cat. converter. I had it done for my Sequoia and it worked in elimating the odor. If i recall correctly, the TSB came out in the summer of '04. I can't say if it applies to the 4-runner (you can try to look it up at alldata.com or NHTSA.gov), but if they found a fix for the Sequoia cat. converter, why not the 4-runner?

    -------------Editting to add:
    I just read an earlier post in this forum that states the following (i.e., there is a specific TSB for the 4runner):
    EXCESSIVE SULFUR DIOXIDE ODOR
    Models:
    ’03 – ’04 4Runner (2UZ–FE)
    Technical Service
    BULLETIN
    June 14, 2004
    Some customers may complain of excessive sulfur dioxide odor on 2003–2004
    model year 4Runner (2UZ–FE) vehicles under the following conditions:
    �� Stop and go driving.
    �� Heavy acceleration.
    In order to reduce the sulfur dioxide odor, the Electronic Control Module (ECM)
    (SAE term: Powertrain Control Module/PCM) fuel cut control logic has been modified and
    a new catalyst is provided. Follow the repair procedure to reflash the ECM and replace
    the catalytic converter assembly.
    NOTE:
    For more complete understanding of the root cause, refer to TSB No. EG003–03
    “Sulfur Odor From Exhaust,” dated February 24, 2003.
    �� 2003 – 2004 model year 4Runner vehicles equipped with the 2UZ–FE engine
    produced BEFORE the Production Change Effective VINs shown below.
    MODEL PLANT DRIVETRAIN PRODUCTION CHANGE EFFECTIVE VIN
    Tahara
    V8 2WD JTEZT##R#40016279
    4Runner
    V8 4WD JTEBT##R#40037525
    Hino
    V8 2WD JTEZT##R#48004215
    V8 4WD JTEBT##R#48015016
    OP CODE DESCRIPTION TIME OFP T1 T2
    EG4004 Recalibrate ECM (PCM) Engine 0.8
    17410 50360 60 99
    Combo A R & R Catalytic Converter Assembly 0.2
    17410–Applicable Warranty*:
    This repair is covered under the Toyota Specified Major Emission Control Component
    Warranty. This warranty is in effect for 96 months or 80,000 miles, whichever occurs
    first, from the vehicle’s in-service date.
    * Warranty application is limited to correction of a problem based upon a customer’s specific complaint.
    ENGINE
    Introduction
    Applicable
    Vehicles
    Production
    Change
    Information
    Warranty
    Information
  • yes, it does apply to the 4runner. I had it done in June 2004 on my vehicle, after smelling the sulphur smell for a few months after I bought it new. They replaced the CC and problem solved. My dealer did not give me a hard time about it, and fixed it for free.
  • agnostoagnosto Posts: 205
    Yes, indeed, I experienced this awful almost throwing up smell like a rotten egg yesterday on stop and go traffic. I have a 2006 4Runner LMT V8 4WD with a little over 1000 miles driven so far. I will definitely call Toyota and dealership to remedy the issue...

    I just finished talking to the Toyota dealer and guess what bad news... there is a new TSB EG004-06 that does cover the 2006 4Runners... I am going to the dealer to let them check it out...
  • agnostoagnosto Posts: 205
    I just came back from the Toyota dealer which he told me is bad quality of gas, but I told him I do not experience it on my other Toyota and it is the same gas... anyhow, he did not insist much and I will be replacing my dual CC in my 2006 4Runner LTD V8 4WD in a couple of days. I will post and let you know if the smell of SO2 goes away afterwards...

    Thanks to all of the posters that contributed to the sulfur SO2 issue... it makes it easier to trouble-shoot issues when information is exchanged...

    In conclusion, Toyota is not addressing this issue since it is a costly one (over $2k) to fix it and relies on a per case ("if you got the smell then we will take care of you").
  • agnostoagnosto Posts: 205
    The bad news is that 2006 4Runners are under the sulfur SO2 issue... The TSB for 2006 4Runner V6 is EG004-06 and 2006 4Runner V8 is EG005-06.
  • scoti1scoti1 Posts: 676
    It baffles me that Toyota continues to use the same catalytic converter when they know it causes this problem. I have a Sequoia that was fixed by the TSB a couple of years ago. It must be more costly to modify the existing cc across the board than to just replace them when people complain. Could it be that they don't meet federal emission standards with the modified cc? Anyone in a state with emissions testing had a replacement cc put in and still pass testing? Just curious.
  • agnostoagnosto Posts: 205
    Oh, I am sure it passes the emission testing control and so on. The reason is what you just said and also questioned Toyota dealership and stated the same reason to be the HIGH COST over $2,000 to replace my two CCs and Toyota will honor ONLY if customer complains, so I took advantage and fixed it right away w/o much hassle...

    Can you imagine $2,000 X 100k customers more or less = $200 millions...
  • tidestertidester Posts: 10,109
    Can you imagine $2,000 X 100k customers more or less = $200 millions...

    Yes, but compared with the $30,000 X 100K = $3 BILLIONS they paid for the vehicles makes it small potatoes! ;)

    tidester, host
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