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Lexus LS: Problems & Solutions

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  • Ok well, thats the first bit of info I've recieved on that problem....however, my car has never been in an accident. :confuse: So is there anything else that could cause that? Also I don't hear any buzzing. Is this something that is ok to ignore? If thats all it is....I can get used to it, just as long as it isn't damaging the engine.
  • tntitantntitan Posts: 306
    does anyone know much about the amplifier and speakers used in these systems. I just bought a 1999 GS 400 (with 56K miles) on EBay with the Nakamichi system. I was going to listen to it for a few weeks before I do anything but I plan to gut the whole system and install my own head unit, amp, components and sub. I was just wondering if anyone knew more about the Nakamichi system or had done any upgrades themselves.
  • bildowbildow Posts: 100
    Proper maintenance is changing the oil at around 5k mikes some people still that it has to be changed at 3k the oils in the last few years have been improved greatly. In fact you can go up to 7500 miles on standard oil if you drive it at least 10 miles a day in one direction. It takes about 7-10 miles to completely filter all the oil in the engine, some people only drive a couple miles a day and never get the moistcher from the engine this causes sludge. So if you only drive a 2-3 miles a day it's recommended to change oil at 3k mikes or 3-4 four months to keep down sludge. A lot of people are now going to synthetic oil which can be changed at 10k or even higher with the new mobil 1 extended oil which says the oil can be changed at 15k miles. There is small down side to this is that all cars will consume at least one quart of oil in 10k miles. The Lexus has a warning light that come on when you are about 1/2 quart low on oil a safety factor built in the car. Transmission oil changes it is recommended you should change it every 20-25 thousand miles. I have synthetic transmission oil in my trans and its seems to work just fine I change it every 35-40 thousand miles. Also change your power steering fluid every 25 thousand miles the quick lube places can some time change for you or use a independent garage to this work. Least but last change the oil in the rear end I would have the dealer do this some rear drives require special oil. The lexus LS400/LS430 is the finest car that can be bought anywhere on this planet. One last thing don't forget the antifreeze every 2 years have any good radiator shop back flush the radiator.
  • bildowbildow Posts: 100
    Have your transmission completely flushed to get out all the old transmission oil and replace it with new oil. Change your transmission oil every 20 to 25 k miles to keep it in shape. Another problem is bumper to bumper traffic is just tearing up our cars and keeping on top of your engine and transmission oil changes is more important today than it was in the past. You also need to change the power steering oil some fast oil change places can do this for you. I your looking for a great independent Lexus/toyota repair in Southern California try Vtech in Lake Forest behind the new car dealers off Lake Forest off ramp where the 5 & 405 freeways meet. I do most of my own maintenance but when I need work on my lexus these are the best I have found for quality work and great prices.Hope this helps some folks looking for a good independent repair shop.
  • bildowbildow Posts: 100
    about 3 years ago while visiting several shops that do cylinder head repair I asked was there a good fuel injector cleaner on the market. They all came back with Lucas fuel injector cleaner and I have found that my 91 LS 400 never has problems with stalling or hesitation when I come off the line at stop lights and bumper to bumper traffic. Talking with several racing companies they said that the lucas really does work. I found if you go to google and put lucas oil you can find places to buy it all over. Your LS 400 does not need oil additives so just run a good brand of oil and always use the same brand from oil change to oil change due to the different oil companies have different base stocks. For your folks who live in very cold climate in the winter and don't have a heater in the engine block to keep the oil warm on cold nights try mobil one synthetic oil it flows to 45 below zero and where as regular oil is thick and sluggish. The biggest wear on your engine is the cold start up this is why Mercedes, BMW, Porsche, and most racing cars from Europe all now come factory filled with mobil one synthetic oil. I have no affiliation with any oil company I am just a booster of synthetic oil which is far ahead of regular oil. If you want to stay with regular oil it will do the job just fine, there is many good brands of synthetic oil on the market that will help keep your car running for years on only lexus but all brands of cars. Happy motoring and remember take good care of your lexus( or any car) and it will take good care of you.
  • yathribyathrib Posts: 2
    I've owned LS400 Lexus since 1991. I have had occassional problem with brakes: applying brakes would cause the car to vibrate. This would normally be taken care of in the next service. I've done in excess of 300,000 km so far. But the brake problem has persisted. A year ago, the dealer advised me to replace the whole brake system with a new one, which I did. And now, the vibrations occur at such a high frequency that I've come not trust the car for long trips. When I complained to the dealer, I was told off record that some 1st Generation LS lexuses were known to have this problem. Indeed, a friend had told me that in U.A.E. some lexuses were recalled. I felt really let down. In 1991 it took a lot of courage to fork out more than $50,000 to buy a startup. And not to be told about the defects; and to be asked to replace the brake system even though it's apparent now that it does not solve the problem!
    Do I have any recourse to a compensation? Please could anyone advise me? Thank you.
  • $50,000 that must have been Canadian....When I priced them in 93 or 94 they were going for $38,000 new. In the U.S.

    I think if the dealer replaced your entire brake system it should work properly or he should still be working on it until it does.
  • yathribyathrib Posts: 2
    To be exact, it cost me 52,109.12 USD. But this an aside. Every time the dealer works on my brake system, I pay handsomely. And it does not take more than a month before the problem reappears. I'm weary of these payments that bring temporary relief. If this was a problem that could not be solved, should I continue to pour money into it? What I'm trying to solicit in this forum is if there are other woners of LS 400 who had experienced this problem, and benefi from them....
  • bdkerbbdkerb Posts: 3
    Ok, I'm trying to convince my wife we 'need' the LS 430. She's struggling with the price (even though its not if we can afford it, but more the thought of spending so much on a car). She says we can get it all with the Toyota Avalon and save $25,0000.+

    On paper, I'm struggling to argue with her. size is similar. When maxed out in options, it has many of the important luxury's. It's a little slower, but 1 second in 0-60 is hard to justify 25k.

    Help me with my argument. How do I convince her to spend 63k on this car instead of 35-40 on an Avalon?
  • vchengvcheng Posts: 1,286
    That should convince her easily.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    how hazadous the FWD Avalon can be in wintertime adverse roadbed conditions in comparison to the RWD LS430.
  • famwaldfamwald Posts: 114
    Ok, I'm trying to convince my wife we 'need' the LS 430. . She says we can get it all with the Toyota Avalon and save $25,0000.+

    Do I ever understand your situation. Take both for a good, hard test drive---interstate and all. Check trunk space. The newer Avalon trunk is smaller than it used to be. Have her drive both cars as well.

    Historically, I think the LS has better resale value.

    Read this month's Consumer Reports magazine --- it just came in my mailbox today (the September issue) but in giving their review a quick browse, I think it will support your wife's side of the argument.

    Have you browsed the Edmunds.com discussion forum for the new Avalon? You'll pick up on any quirks or complaints there.

    Good luck. Either way, both are great cars, IMHO.
  • bildowbildow Posts: 100
    I have had the same problem with vibration with the front or rear brakes I have found that the problem is usually that the rotors are slightly warped and need to be turned. I have also left the emergency brake on for a short while and warped the rear brakes. And now when I hit the brakes I get a vibration from the rear and and all I have to do is turn the rotors. I hope this answer helps. I have never heard of the lexus being recalled for brakes, and in California in 1991 the LS400 was only 38,000.00 new and that was all that the dealers charged. Also your tires could be slightly out of balance causing a vibration on slow down or it could possibly be the tires causing the problem. You said in your message that you were not trusting the lexus on along trip, the vibration is a small problem and the lexus will not give you any trouble on any long trips. You own the worlds finest automobile second to none.
  • Hey guys....lately I've started to smell gas....but the smell was very profound in the garage this morning. My guess mileage has not changed....19-22 mpg...what does the gas smell mean....??? Also, I've had my tires balanced several times and still have the vibration @ about 60mph...has michelin harmony tires, with plenty of tread left...what else can I do?

    Thanks....Otherwise, I'm really enjoying the car....Believe it was a good buy!!
  • n16ueln16uel Posts: 7
    I too have had brake problems with my 1991 LS400. Car is now at the dealer for a variety of work, including brakes. Dealer charged $40 diagnostic fee to tell me that the few-months-old rotors (which I bought from the same dealer) need turning at a cost of $350 for all four. I declined to accept and am hoping that the new bushings they are installing on the rear suspension will help kill the vibration. If not, I'll remove the rotors myself later and have some local garage turn them for a fraction of the dealer's price. Otherwise a superb car. Bought it in November 2002 from second little old lady owner with 60,000 miles on it and have since raised that to 140,000, having replaced the timing belt and all pulleys, water pump, distributor caps and rotors at 90,000 miles (took me 17 hours), the power steering pump, the front upper and lower control arms and steering tie rods, and more brake rotors and pads than I can remember off hand. Also replaced original 15-inch wheels and noisy Pirelli tires with 16-inch 2003 LS430 wheels (bought new for $100 apiece from a Calif. wheel shop) and much quieter Michelin MXV4s. Car is now in for replacement of seized air-conditioning compressor (and, while they're at it, clutch and receiver dryer and conversion to new refrigerant and recharge -- total $1,700), replacement of all rear bushings (already bought the parts but I threw in the towel on doing the job myself) and new oil pan gasket and dipstick O ring -- adding another $1,700. So for $3,500 outlay now, I hope to get the car back to its original smoothness. Brakes remain a frustration, and I'm going to have to find a cheap place to get the rotors turned if the shakes return -- usually only when brakes are applied at between 50 and 60 mph and virtually never above or below that speed band. Any other ideas for a permanent fix?
  • sv7887sv7887 Posts: 351
    Hi all,
    I've never had any brake issues with my 92 LS thus far. I just replaced my rear brake pads at 95K miles. The rotors are all original. Lexus dealers normally offer a one year warranty on all work, so you really should not be paying a cent. I don't see why you should have to replace rotors so often. Have a good independant mechanic have a look. Lexus dealers unfortunately aren't created equal.

    Vibration issues are almost always due to tires. Find a machine shop with a Hunter Load Force Balancer. It is possible that the vibration may be due to ball joints or bushings, but I'd doubt it. I had a severe vibration problem back in 1995 with this LS and they found in the end they had to shimmy the U-Shaft (If I remember correctly) to solve the problem. Also they switched the tires over to a set of Bridgestone Turanzas as well.

    Hope this helps,
    SV
  • HANDS DOWN, THE LEXUS IS THE ONLY CAR. REAR WHEEL DRIVE AND FINEST QUALITY INTERIOR THERE IS. I PURCHASED A 90 LS 400 9 0R 10 YRS AGO. REPLACED THE TIMING BELT AT 90K AND PRESENTLY HAVE 177K ON IT . 2 YRS AGO I PICKED UP A 97 LS 400. WITH 57K ON IT. MY PLAN WAS TO SELL THE 90, BUT THE OLD ONE CONTINUES TO PURR SO MY NICER THAN THE 97 THAT IT IS MY PREFERRED DAILY TRANSPORTATION. MY ATTEMPTS TO SELL IT WERE HALF HEARTED AND GLAD THAT I STILL OWN IT. MY ONLY COMPLAINT ABOUT THE LEXUS REAR WHEEL DRIVE, IS IN SNOW AND ON AN INCLINE, THEY HAVE POOR TRACTION. I SWITCHED TO ALL FOUR SNOW TIRES IN THE WINTER AND IT WAS ALMOST BETTER THAN 4 WD. I BOUGHT A COMPLETE SET OF WHEELS AND TIRES TO CHANGE EACH SEASON. HOWEVER , I HAVE'NT DONE THIS WITH THE 97 MODEL. OVER ALL, LEXUS IS A SUPER VEHICLE.
  • famwaldfamwald Posts: 114
    Is it normal for the outdoor temp. indicator to take a long time before it accurately represents the true outdoor temperature?

    When we take our '05 LS out of the garage in the summer heat, it takes over an hour before the true outside temp shows up on the dashboard, even after it has sat parked in the sun (in 95°F heat) for 30 minutes between errands.

    Finally, after 1 1/2 hours or 2 hours, the true outdoor temp will appear.

    Is this normal Lexus experience, or should be contact our dealer? We've never seen this take so long, with our other cars ... past or present. (Volvo, BMW, Toyota)
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