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2005-2007 Toyota Avalon

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  • finfin atlantaPosts: 589
    Obvious what you are saying...but.. when you say "step on the gas" then how hard, that is, how much gas are we talking about? Half throttle? One third? A little? Max? And to what speed do you slow? Maybe 10 mph?

    The '07 Limited I bought 2 weeks ago has yet to do the hesitation rev-up thing but I want to be ready. Still only 500 miles on the car. So far, so good. Thanks.
  • bobwileybobwiley Posts: 241
    fin: I only press hard enough to get going at a decent speed--no hot rod start. I slow to about 10 mph or there abouts and then as stated above--just take off by moderately stepping on the gas.
    Bob
  • bobwileybobwiley Posts: 241
    alan_s: My understanding is the oil ports in the engine were too small to allow "free" flow of the oil and Toyota was aware of the problem. Much like Ford and the infamous Pinto gas tank issue. Go to www.google.com Type in Maint Schedule for 1997 Toyota 4 Cylinder Engines. Scroll down and you'll find an article regarding "oil gelling" in Toyota engines!! Good reading.
    Bob
  • alan_salan_s Posts: 357
    Yes, apparently the diameter of the oil ducts machined in the block and head were intentionally reduced in size so the engines would run hotter in order to meet emission requirements.
    As the oil viscosity increased as it deteriorated there was reduced lubrication and hence the problem. I switched to synthetics based on the theory that if a synthetic takes longer to break down and is more durable in high temperatures, my engines would be less likely to develop the problem, however later a Toyota mechanic told me that they had seen problems emerge even when synthetics were used.
    Luck of the draw I guess.
    We are getting off-topic, so Pat's venerable hammer may shortly descend upon us... :blush:
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    "..the GS is, of course, much too small..."

    Are you thinking of the IS by any chance? My 2000 GS300 had a cabin size very close to my 92 LS400.

    Speaking of the IS...

    I figure the IS300 body, chasis, and drivetrain are good candidates for replacing the Camry and ES when the time comes, hopefully sooner than later.
  • bob, are you saying that you go from "d" / Drive to "s" sequential shift while the car is moving? I didn't know you could do that without hurting the tranny... I've used the sequential shift a few times just playing around, but have always put it in "s" while the car was at a dead stop.

    Roland
  • tjc78tjc78 JerseyPosts: 5,025
    You can put the car into "S" whenever you want. It defaults to 4th gear.

    1999 Chevy S10 / 2004 Merc Grand Marquis / 2012 Buick LaCrosse

  • tjc78tjc78 JerseyPosts: 5,025
    Bob,

    I am not trying to say your car doesn't have a problem, but how do you "step" on the gas while rolling through a yield. Is it a quick "jab" maybe 1/3 way down, or a gentle "roll" of your foot to say 1/3 down? It does make a difference, the accelerator is so sensitive that the computer can get confused quite easily. For example, a quick stab at the pedal followed by an ever so slight reduction in pressure can make the car downshift and rev the engine then immediately cut back the revs. I really think this is what you are feeling. With my Av I had a slight learning curve with the scenario you mention (yield sign) I find the car is most responsive to slow even pressure of the gas pedal, rather than a immediate push to 1/3 or 1/2 open throttle. Of course if I need to merge in a hurry (quite common here in NJ) I just mash it to the floor and get an immediate downshift.

    1999 Chevy S10 / 2004 Merc Grand Marquis / 2012 Buick LaCrosse

  • bobwileybobwiley Posts: 241
    Hey Roland--how ya doing--long time no hear from--ypu've been too quiet!! Yes, I slide the gear shift over into "S" and down shift to "1"--then after I take off and get to 15-20 MPH I just slide the gear shift over to "D"--NEVER a slipping or lurching problem. Try this--next time you come to a stop sign, shift into "S" and down shift to "1st"---take off and just push the lever forward thru 2-3-4-5--once in 5--slide lever over to the "D" mode. Watchout if ya have a "lead foot"--the Avy will fly--so watch the RPM's, be ready to "push" the gear shift forward as you reach higher RPM's and have some fun---it is a ROCKET!! I also use the "S" mode and down shift as I come down the long hill to our subdivision--works great and it's just like using a regular 5 speed without the clutch! I let the engine do some of the "braking" rather than riding the brake pedal for almost a 1/3 of amile. These Ozark hills are steep! Good luck and have fun with the manual shift capability of the tranny--this procedure works GREAT!
    Bob
  • bobwileybobwiley Posts: 241
    tjc78: This 1st time it happened to me, I'd had the car about 2-3 month's and I'd read about the problem in this Forum. I just figured I was lucky. When it happened to me, I'd come down our long hill, looked left--there is a stop sign and since I can clearly see down the hill, if no traffic is coming, I do a "rolling" stop. Well, imagine my surprise when I let my foot off the brake and applied moderate pressure to the gas pedal and all I heard was the engine revving and me still just rolling along. Then all of a sudden it lurched and I mean "SHOT" me forward to about 35 MPH. I called my dealer after running my errand and of course they'd never heard of the problem. Car was a year old 26 Jan 07. I lodged a complaint with both Toyota and the NHTSA. Of course, Toyota knew nothing of the problem and I've never heard from the NHTSA. Like I've said in the Forum--I just manually down shift to 1st and once going slide the gear shift over to D---NEVER a problem. I duplicated the "quirky" tranny yesterday--it does it EVERY TIME I leave it in D and do a rolling stop and then press on the gas--no matter if it's Light, Moderate or Heavy pressure. I'm now conditioned and my procedure works--I love the ride, comfort, quietness, gas mileage and almost everything else--so I just endure the tranny issue.
    Bob
  • Ive had my 2007 limited for 3 months and have had no bothersome problems with the transmission. I have noticed that when coming to a stop, the transmission seems to "release" the engine braking. There is a slight but noticible feeling that the car suddenly looses the engine "drag".This is probably to allow the engine to drop to lower RPM and thus save a little gas.

    I have also noticed that in the situation that bobwiley describes, that when I accelerate after slowing to say 10 MPH, the transmission downshifts and the engine revs in away that I would not allow if I were driving a stick shift. This reving is very short in duration, the acceleration is smooth and prompt, so it is not a problem for me. I wonder if changes have been made in the software controlling the transmission in the 2007.

    I also have a 1997 Avalon that I still enjoy driving but in my opinion the 2007 is a quantum leap forward
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    "...This is probably to allow the engine to drop to a lower RPM and thus save a little gas..."

    No, that's exactly what I thought at one time. You're losing the engine braking drag because that drag on a FWD vehicle can easily result in loss of control, directional control, if the roadbed happens to be slippery. You may notice that it also happens at higher speeds, the transaxle upshifts upon a FULL lift-throttle event.

    Look around, Google for:

    wwest "throttle lag" hesitation

    For more detail.

    Or start by reading the post I just added for the Suzuki SX4 thread.
  • Toyota is presenting a paper at a SAE conference in April on Upshift Control Technology. See http://www.sae.org/technical/papers/2007-01-1310 for those interested.
  • captain2captain2 Posts: 3,971
    no, I was acutally talking about the GS, the Avalon being a larger car in all respects, and much closer to the LS in some. The GS and the Camry are closer in size to each other.
  • angeange Posts: 158
    Your experience with sudden shift after slowing down and accelerating has happened to me two times. After I slowed down almost to a stop I floored the accelerator and the car stood still and the engine roared for several seconds, then jerked into gear.

    This to me is "transmission slipping" for whatever reason you want to use. Worn out clutches act this way and poor computer selection for the shifting timing act this way.. Anyway it happens.

    I have used the manual shift a number of times until I found I was in 3rd gear doing 60 mph.

    ange
  • angeange Posts: 158
    The camera is built in at the top of the license frame. It can be adjusted up or down. The lens is about 3/8 inch round and sealed in a glass cover.

    There is way to know when you are close. I angled the camera so I could not see anymore ground and still had 12 inches before touching anything.
    The electronic box is designed for the Avalon navigation computer unit in the trunk. You disconnect two multiwire terminals and install the box terminals and then replace the Avalon terminals on top. The power source to the camera part comes from the back up wire. When the shift lever is placed in reverse, the back up light gets power and so does the box sending the camera signal to the factory navigation screen. When shifting to drive the normal navigation unit comes on. I had to run wires to fuse box under the dash for power and ground.

    I looked at the $100 wireless units. Some can be turned on all of the time or only come on when wired to the back up lights. I was afraid to get one because of the small angle viewed and poor picture quality. I did not want a blank screen mounted somewhere up front.

    Check the internet re back up cameras. There many out there.

    ange
  • bobwileybobwiley Posts: 241
    ange: I'm just tired of the quirky tranny--that's why I use the manual mode. I can't accept the DBW problems--an automatic is supposed to be just that. I'm just glad the Avy has the manual capability. Have you reported your problem to Toyota and to NHTSA. If not, I'd do so and then you have it on record. If enough of us complain--who knows?
    Bob
  • ange, bobwiley and anyone else who has experienced occasional RPM surges or quirky shifting,

    All you need to do is to shift out of D, into S and 5, and just leave it there.

    In the S-5 mode, the car will shift through all the gears as needed, but with no attempts at "learning" and no surprises. Keep driving as you would in D. No need to shift up & down manually through the gears (unless you enjoy this exercise, of course).

    If this doesn't cure it, check your foot placement on the gas pedal. Avoid toe-driving. The Av has a sensitive accelerator that is best controlled by applying foot pressure on the middle or the top half of the gas pedal. Toe driving can cause lags and surges, as was extensively discussed in this thread over a year ago.

    Just about 2 years already and still impressed with my XLS.
  • bobwileybobwiley Posts: 241
    Thanks--I'll try it next time and let all know the results. I must admit, I do like the manual capability when desceding the Ozzark hills--let the motor help with the braking. All this Drive By Wire (DBW) is Driving Me Nuts (DMN)--guess after driving for about 53 years you can always learn something new!
    Bob
  • angeange Posts: 158
    I sent an e-mail to toyota and all they did was refer me back to the dealer. The dealer service people, some of them,
    agree there is a transmission problem. They tell me toyota is working on it. I'll have to complain to NHTSA to be another on the list.

    The unexpected slip-miss when trying to get into a fast traffic lane could or can be an accident or near miss. I have driven many company cars, got a new one every two years, and never experienced the transmission slippage during fast acceleration or the hesitation in slow traffic that the avalon exhibites. It is not a nice thing to say, but when you have a company you can do some things you would never do when you pay for the car. I did some tough driving with these cars and none hesitated and slipped as does the avalon.

    There have been times, maybe 1-2 times per year when the car would be a situtation when speed, gear, and rpms would be such that the transmission controlling electronics would be so close to going one gear up or one gear down and a slight hesitation would happon. This flaw and was liveable and not annoying, especially when it happens more on a freakish basis. I believe I can duplicate the avalon slippage when slowing and then fast acceleration.

    I tried the manual mode in slow rush hour traffic and I could not see no any improvement. It is kind of embarassing to have your friends in the car and they comment on the poor transmission changes.

    I don't know why toyota, knowing they had transmission problems in the lexus models before the avalons, 2005's, came out, and still did not do anything. Then making the same transmission throuh 2007, doesn't make any common sense. I think it makes 'money sense' to them.

    Ange
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    "..Toyota is working on it..."

    Yes, for a VERY long time now.

    Actually the very first written record of the 1-2 second downshift delay was a TSB issued in the spring of 2003 for the 2002 Camry. The earliest recorded customer symptoms indicative of this problem involved the initial production run of the RX300 in '98.
  • bobwileybobwiley Posts: 241
    Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm--sure sounds like a Class Action Suit to me. What we need is to give Erin Brockovich an Avalon and then tell her Toyota has known about the quirky transmission since the 1998 Lexus RX300 model run. I'm just glad that I haven't had the problem using the manual mode and down shifting to 1st. i'm gonna try leaving it in the "S" mode and see what happens.
    Bob
  • angeange Posts: 158
    The navvideo module I have is made for the avalon navigation unit. It is made in canada by G-Net Incorporated. cost $399.

    The license plate camera is made by BOYO. Mfg.by Visionhitech Co. cost about $129.

    You can find these on the internet.

    The selling point for me was using the existing screen and not having to solder wires to install. I did not want an empty screen mounted somewhere around the dash being dark except when in reverse. ange
  • I had just visited the automobilemag.com site and saw the video there. Pretty funny. Seems like every time I'm looking for a tweak for my Avy, I find it in Lexus related material...

    Anyways, worked like a charm on my '05 Limited. I really needed it today, with the blizzard hitting us in the Northeast...

    Today was the first time I've been stuck in wet, heavy snow with my Avalon. I couldn't rock the car without the damn VSC kicking in. What a PITA! I thought to myself, "There's got to be way to shut it off." So, I break out the manual and on page 320 it says something along the lines of "...if the vehicle gets stuck, VSC can be turned off..." SWEET! Then it goes on to say; "...contact your Toyota dealer for detailed information." D'oh!!!

    So I call my dealer, who is closed because it's a BLIZZARD. I then call the Toyota 800 number in the front of the book. When I get through to a real, live CS rep, it took about twenty minutes of patient explaination and waiting to get them to research the answer and promise to call me back. In the meantime, I go back to my office and find the info on the 'net. In less than an hour, I've got it printed out and ready to try. As I'm walking back to my stranded vehicle, my cell rings. It's the Toyota CS rep. She says that the technical people she contacted said "...the VSC system is automatic and cannot be turned off" I thanked her for calling back and told her that I found the information I needed on the Internet and was about to implement it. Minutes later, I was on my way home.

    Next, replace the OEM Michelins with a fine set Nokian WR's. :D
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    So, did you use the simple "unplug the MAF/IAT" procedure?
  • Hello all, and especially to you bob... I've been reading every night, just not chiming in very often.. but I have a question concerning the avy's oil filter. I always use Mobil 1 syn. oil and Filter. When I went to the local auto parts store to get a new Filter, they didn't have a cross reference book for the 07 models.. So I emailed Mobil and asked them for the correct oil filter "model".. here's the reply I got

    "The 2007 Toyota Avalon 3.5l is a canister filter. Mobil one does offer that style yet."

    I don't want to show my stupidity, but what is a "canister" filter.. How do they differ from "normal" filters and which is better for your car? Somebody please help an old man out. Preesh.

    Roland
  • mem4mem4 Posts: 52
    The best way I can describe it is the filter has an outer shell housing that is reusable and you change the inner pleated filter paper only. Buy one at your Toyota dealer and you will see what I mean. The filter comes with instructions and if you search here you will find a posting with pictures describing the change procedure.
  • tjc78tjc78 JerseyPosts: 5,025
    I actually keep a copy of the procedure in the glovebox. I have been lucky and haven't had to use it (except to test). I just want to know, who came up with that crazy series of commands. I hope on future models the "off" switch comes back.

    1999 Chevy S10 / 2004 Merc Grand Marquis / 2012 Buick LaCrosse

  • ...I actually keep a copy of the procedure in the glovebox...

    I do now, too. :)

    Ditto on the idea of a hardware switch.
  • So, did you use the simple "unplug the MAF/IAT" procedure?
    No messing with hardware, just software.

    Click the link below, print the 13 step engage/disengage procedure. Then watch the video.
    How to switch off VSC on a Lexus GS430
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