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Toyota Avalon 2004 and earlier



  • abfischabfisch Posts: 591

    There are a couple more tricks besides the torque, which is very important as mentioned. When the brakes are redone, make sure them put antiseize compound on the slider pins and the grooves that hold the pads in place and let them slide. This will keep them from seizing. Second, when rotating the tires(if you do that) that is a good time to clean off the rotors and take a fine emergy cloth to them to slightly roughen them up and get any rust off. I know it is a pain, but worth while at that time. Third, if doing alot of city driving, turn the OD off. This way, you can have the engine do someof the braking as the fourth gear in the Avalon is quite high. Fourth, in a 97, check your struts. IF they are very worn, you will notice the car nose diving under harder braking, more than normal. Change them, if you intend keeping the vehicle awhile. That will eliminate some of the front end bias the front brakes take. Six, although good for the paint, automatic car washes I have found, seize my brakes, if I use them weekly during the winter months, so I just live withthe salt for awhile now. Doing brakes yearly is not my bag.

    Hope this is helpful.

  • Hi.

    I have a 1996 Avalon with 168,000 miles on it. The past few winters I was hearing a loud clunk noise from the left rear. Initially I had a strut mount replaced. Then I had the antiswaybar bushings and left swaybar link replaced. Then the brake caliper was missing the "safety" hardware kit. Then I had new rear struts put in. This made the noise worse!! Any rough patch or ruffle in the street stirred it up--like something was very loose. I had taken it to several mechanics in between and either they couldn't find anything or prior to the struts suggested replacing them and one mechanic said it was the seat. Finally I took out the back seat myself and took it to another mechanic who finally said it was the strut mount. He had someone ride in the backseat and could visibly see the strut going up and down and making all the noise. I had another strut mount put in and it's like new. Why the first strut mount didn't take care of it is a mystery--perhaps it was defective or not seated in properly. The strut and mounts were problematic with the Avalon and Camry and 300 series Lexus in certain years. I would consider the strut mount if it makes a good clunking noise over certain bumps and rough surfaces. The only way to diagnose it is to take the rear seat out completely--not difficult--because the mount is in the upper portion near the rear deck and is not visible from underneath the car. Many mechanics are not concerned with noises. The noise was so annoying I was ready to get rid of the car but was determined to have it fixed right. Hope this helps.
  • I recently purchased a '96 Avalon. When the car is shifted in reverse, there is a loud thump sound. My mechanic changed the front and rear mounts. The thump sound disappeared after a day and then returned. What is causing this sound?

  • Hello guys,the left front caliper of my 98 Avalon is sticking.Is there any solution other than changing the caliper?I changed the brakes the second day of October last year,two weeks ago I heard squealing comming from the front.I checked the brakes and found that both inner and out pads on the left wheel were gone.No,the pads did not fall out,they were worn down to the metal.The right wheel had about 3/4 meat left.Also,I am thinking about installing crossed drilled rotors for the front because I have to change the rotors.Any suggestions?

    Thanks for any help in advance
  • whilstwhilst Posts: 19
    Replace BOTH calipers,pads and rotors.
    Cheap @autozone,etc.
    FLUSH your brake fluid as well.
    Slotted,drilled,etc.,rotors are okbut,they can't be re-surfaced.
    Stock works very well.
    My .02.
  • finfin atlantaPosts: 591
    As suggested above, it is time for new calipers and pads and a good brake system fluid flush. Buy quality parts and fluid always.

    Drilled, or crossdrilled, rotors: They will help you stop faster as they remove heat and water faster. Use only in pairs on the same axel. Adding "slots" will help more but adds significant brake noise and greatly reduces pad life. Slotted rotors are directional, use on all four corners only for best results.

    Hope this helps.... enjoy you Avy... :) Fin
  • glubashglubash Posts: 19
    Finally got this fixed. A little more information on the problem:
    - AC Amplifier is burned up
    - Air Inlet Servo Motor

    Apparently what happens is that the motor that runs the flap to mix the cold and hot air goes beyond its end of travel and burns up the motor. The parts that came out were a circuit board (AC Amplifier) and a small motor about the size of an apple. For this one, I paid:
    Parts = $731.33
    Labor = $280.00

    Repairs were done near St. Paul, MN

  • 5539655396 Posts: 529
    "Or my wife's driving habits?"

    Maybe she needs to change her driving style. Does she charge up to a stop sign and them slam on the brakes and hold them on? If I need to do a hard stop, I leave myself a bit of space so I can creep forward a bit. My thinking is that the applied brake pads retain heat in one spot on the rotor while the rest cools, possibly causing warpage, so I creep or move ahead slowly for more even heat dissapation.
  • 5539655396 Posts: 529
    "The thump sound disappeared after a day and then returned. What is causing this sound?"

    Worn CV joints? Worn U joints would cause this due to excess play being taken up when changing direction.
  • 5539655396 Posts: 529
    Anyone had wheel bearing problems? Coming back from Arizona, I noticed a growling sound. It concerned me but never got worse over the next 1200 miles and still hasn't. I do get some low speed noise from worn tires and will soon change to my summer mag wheels to eliminate that, but the growl is consistant. I suspect a wheel bearing because if I turn one way, the noise is lighter, and the other way intensifies it. I only have 55k on the car, so this shouldn't happen unless there were bad bearings.
  • "If I need to do a hard stop, I leave myself a bit of space so I can creep forward a bit. My thinking is that the applied brake pads retain heat in one spot on the rotor while the rest cools, possibly causing warpage, so I creep or move ahead slowly for more even heat dissapation."

    Right on. This is the same advice I got from my Toyota service manager after replacing warped front rotors (under warranty). We live in a hilly area where more than average braking is required. I now use the creep method when waiting at stop lights.
  • melottmelott Posts: 3
    I have a 2003 XLS. I recently experienced severe gas mileage decline on a road trip. I checked the only thing I could think of fixing on the road, the air filter. Indeed, it was plugged up--little translucence. Replacing it fixed the problem. Thing is, it only had 9000 miles on it. I do not drive on dusty roads. All my life I have gone for 10k air filter intervals and have never had a problem. Are these vehicles different?
  • abfischabfisch Posts: 591
    The metallurgy on the rotors are inferior then. Too pay over 30K for a machine, that you have to worry about how much you apply the brake would trouble me personally. I would have appeared not to have gotten my money's worth.

    On my 02, with 91K, I have noticed two major issues with the brakes. I should preface this and tell you I live in Northern NY where the winters are a little long as the application of salt.

    1. Constant car washing especially with the undercarriage treatment may get the salt off but it also gets the grease off the sliding points and bolts to the calipers. This is effect seizes the calipers up prematurely, especially the rears, adding more incapacity to the fronts which warp sooner.

    2. I have added aftermarket, not OEM rotors with slots to them, and they seem, at least in the last 12K miles, to be able to tolerate harder applications on occassion more. No, I do not race. I do trail, sometimes, unfornutately, in excess of 1500lbs, which uses more braking when loaded. On the opposite side, they do require replacement more often.

    3. The vanes between the two sides of the rotors are what ventilates the metal the most. The metal though is important and the slots help. As I am a big avocate of aftermarket premium struts, I do believe that there is less front end dive under harder braking with aftermarket shocks, dissipating the stress on the front brakes as there is less weight transfer.

    Try some of these things. You might be surprised in an otherwise very good all around vehicle.

  • jjstolarikjjstolarik Posts: 2
    Thanks, I've gotten a lot of great feed back from everyone on this site. I love this car with the exception of the unusual rotor warpage. I'll check out those struts.
  • ms09ms09 Posts: 112
    whats the 0 to 60/ 62mph seconds for the 2001 avalon?

    and if u do know whats the difference for the new1.

  • petecalpetecal Posts: 28
    My friend has a 1999 Avalon. The door locks have started opening at random. I would like to do a little debugging. Does any body know where the control module for the door locks is located?

    Also, is there a separate module for the alarm system or are the two integrated?

    It seems the doors unlock at random. If the alarm is set, then the alarm sounds. To me that implies the car doesn't "think" it was the remote that unlocked the doors.

    We were sitting in his driveway last night having a cold one and every few minutes we could hear the door locks "click". In one case, we locked all the doors (alarm not set). In a few minutes, we heard the click and is seems only the driver's door was unlocked. To me that means the lock controller thought that someone unlocked the driver's door using the inside door handle or key in the door.

    The car has an aftermarket remote starter system. He has taken the car to both the dealer and the guys that installed the remote starter. Both say their parts check out and it must be a problem with the other's equipment.

    Thanks in Advance

  • petecalpetecal Posts: 28
    I guess no one knows where the control module for the locks is located. Does anybody know of a forum where I can get the answer.


  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Someone in this discussion might be able to help: Got a Quick, Technical Question? It's not vehicle specific and there are a lot of knowledgeable people hanging out there who wouldn't see your question here. Hope this helps.
  • whilstwhilst Posts: 19
    Hi. Make sure the battery and connections are charged/clean.
    You can subscribe to "alldata" for a year=$30.
  • petecalpetecal Posts: 28
    Well, the terminals look OK. Also, the radio isn't loosing its programmed stations so I doubt that is the problem.

    As for alldata. They can take their site and shove it. For the price you pay for a vehicle, the manufacturer should give you the shop manual.

    In fact, I just purchased a new car last week. I had it narrowed down to a Toyota, Honda, or Hyundai. In the end I went with the Hyundai. A major factor was that I can access the shop manual online for free.

    Life move on and so does customer service.

  • Have u tried yet?
  • petecalpetecal Posts: 28
    No, never heard of it. But thanks to you I just went there. Great!!!

    I googled for Toyota forums but that didn't show.

    Thanks Again

  • par_papar_pa Posts: 13
    Has anybody removed the instrument panel lense on Avalon 2000 XLS to clean the interior of panel? What is the trick? My Hayes manual mentions removing 4 screws, but there is none, and trim around bezel seems snug. Can anybody describe how to?
  • par_papar_pa Posts: 13
    Forget about my previous question, I found the way to remove the lense, and the cleaning went well, as also manage to remove scratches on plastic, with the help of a CD scratch remover.
  • gedgoudaslgedgoudasl Posts: 21
    par_pa, would you share with us how the panel lens comes off?
  • par_papar_pa Posts: 13

    That is finally easy. Just pull the speaker at the left side of the dashboard, by prying sightly the left side of the speaker. Then, with a large screwdriver, gently pry the vinyl molding downside the upper lip of the dashboard. Then pry the larger plastic from the 6 retainers. Be careful, as that plastic edge is very sharp, as I got cut. Use your flat screwdriver instead of your fingers.
    Then pry the narrow molding below the instrument panel lense. You should now see the lense exposed. Gently pull the lower end of the lense to remove it. Installation is the reverse of removal. The hardiest part is re installing the large and cutting plastic molding at the upper part of dashboard, as the retainer clips keep getting out of their seats. Be patient and work slowly.
  • kurtraatzkurtraatz Posts: 1
    Please send the instruction sheet to me @

    Thanks, Kurt
  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Hi Kurt, welcome to CarSpace! That poster hasn't logged in for a few months, but his email address is public in his profile. You might want to try to reach him that way.

    And FWIW, making your email address public in your profile is the best way to give it to others. When you post it on a regular webpage like this one, the automated webcrawlers will pick it up and use it in ways that aren't fun.
  • burlburl Posts: 40
    I know every one seems to change their timing belt on schedule?

    Has anyone pushed the schedule or actually had a belt break?

    Is there a way to check the wear without tearing the engine down?

    Thank you for the information
  • netwonnetwon Posts: 53
    In the 2005+ model year Avalons() I don't see the timing belt as a maint item on the schedule. Unlike the V8 4Runner.

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