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Toyota Sienna Maintenance and Repair (2003 earlier)



  • sbisssbiss Posts: 9
    My 99 Sienna's liftgate handle mechanism broke. It was not the cable, but the cable actuator handle. A piece of plastic broke off so it would no longer pull the cable to release the lock. I believe the part cost $65, but you do have to disassemble liftgate door panel to replace. Time consuming, but it was relatively easy.

    So the last 2 messages I have posted have detailed 50% of the problems I have encountered in almost 5 years of ownership. The other 2 issues were a broken piece of trim and a interior fan motor replacement. Sure beats the performance of the Caravan I had which experienced 10 failures (sometimes bizarre) during the first 3 years. The Sienna has been a dream in comparison. Now if I can just keep my wife from wanting an '04 now that the '99 is only 3 payments from being paid off.
  • Thanks for the info, Howard. I jacked up the van and discovered there was a steel staple that traversed the rear passenger wheel on the inside sidewall. Someone had also added Fix-a-Flat improperly which created a gob of the substance near the air stem. This created a chemical ball within the tire, and threw the other wheels out of balance. Thanks again.
  • I will go to the dealer a bit better prepared. The car has less than 18K on it. They inspected the brakes at both the 15,000 mile service and the 18,000 service, so I'm not sure what the situation would be. Can the roters warp if the pads are still okay?
  • This weekend the "check engine" light came on in my Sienna. Using the knowledge thatI had gained from this board, I knew that one possible problem might be a loose gas cap. I checked the gas cap and it was loose. I tightened it and also filled the tank.

    The problem is that the light has not gone back off. How long should it take for the light to go out? Should I take it to the dealer right away or give it a few more days? (There does not seem to be any other problem with the engine or the car other than the steering wheel shimmy with high speed braking that I've mentioned previously.)
  • steverstever Posts: 52,683
    I've heard that three key cycles will turn the CEL off in some cars; others take a few tanks of gas through the system. I'd wait a bit longer myself.

    Steve, Host
  • kathys2kathys2 Posts: 2
    6/4/03 - check engine light on and code PO174 system lean/a/f lean malfunction bank 2 rear manifold. Since van had only 44K Toyota paid for repair and replaced 02 sensor for goodwill. Now on 7/3 check engine light came on again. Yet another trip to the dealer to find out "everything tested ok". Yes, on 7/7 light came on again. Today they tell me the MAF sensor had build up on both sensors and we have bad gas! I'm sure the light will come on again during our road trip vacation this next week. Any advice?
  • russ1928russ1928 Posts: 8
    Andyman1970: I had that happen on a 1998 Ply mouth Grand Voyager.Turns out when I replaced the tires from a tire place other than the dealer the lug nuts were tightened too tight and it warped the rotors. At least that's what I was told . They turned the rotors and the problem went away.
  • jeproxjeprox Posts: 466
    i just received a letter in the mail this week from toyota canada telling me that my tranny warranty have been extended to 8yrs/160,000kms no charge (whichever comes first).

    it was a very polite letter stating that they have found some sienna's from 98-00 models have been experiencing tranny problems so they decided to extend the warranty. how nice of them!
  • cloud406cloud406 Posts: 4
    Hi, my 02 Sienna for the past week periodically stalls when I start the engine. Initially the idle speed was okay and then the engine stalls. I had to rev the engine for a little while before it stops stalling. Can anyone shed some light on this?
  • cloud406cloud406 Posts: 4
    I just got a call from the dealer and said that my 02 sienna (22,000 miles) has a bad idling motor and that is why the engine stalls periodically. Does this make sense? How can you tell whether you have a bad idling motor? Is there like a code in the computer or something?
  • deepandeepan Posts: 342
    There apparently is a cold start injector/sensor in the vehicle that modulates the ratio of fuel/air when the engine is cold. It could be the one failing. In anycase since the van is new it should be covered under warranty.
  • lunarmistlunarmist Posts: 41
    Could someone please provide instructions on how to remove the air filter from its holder. I am unable to get enough clearance to be able to remove the filter.

    Also, any suggestion on which Toyota service manual I should purchase to perform routine maintenance, RM871-U1 or RM871-U2
  • deepandeepan Posts: 342
    I have replaced the Air filter on my 00 and have had no issues(atleast i cant remember so it must have been straight forward). You probably wont be able to life it straight out but might need to get it out sideways.
  • jeproxjeprox Posts: 466
    pop all the clips off and pull up, slide out the filter. all done.
    u may have to apply more force to pull up the cover but it'll come out.
  • Hi,

    I have a 2000 Sienna LE and recently had a broken transmission. The vehicle was still under warranty at the time of incident. I went to the local Toyota dealer and the dealer refused to cover it. Instead, I had to pay $2500 for the replacement of the transmission.

    I am trying to get some opionion regarding how I can fight for this and hopefully will be able to get it reimbursed from the warranty contract.

  • deepandeepan Posts: 342
    to 8 yrs/160k kms whichever comes first (98-00). You should not be paying anything!!!
  • bmwx5bmwx5 Posts: 16
    cidaflying : I wonder why you had to pay even a dime to replace a transmission which is under powertrain warranty which for sienna is 5years/60K miles. Open a ticket with toyota HQ and speak with them first. You can open at good luck.
  • yamanyaman Posts: 113
    Why on earth would a dealer refuse to work on a car where he knows he is going to make money through the warranty?
    Did he give you a reason? This makes no sense at all.
  • shuedshued Posts: 107
    properly maintained.
  • just4fun2just4fun2 Posts: 461
    What is the maintenance schedule for a 2000 Sienna? How long is the transmission under warranty?
  • hansiennahansienna Posts: 2,312
    I can not readily find a link to him but he is an expert on warranty problems and has posted in many forums here in the Edmunds Town Hall.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,683
    Zues responded in another topic where the tranny problem was posted - forgot where I saw it, but I think it was on the Finance, Warranty & Insurance Board. People do like to cross-post.

    Steve, Host
  • vgbsbcvgbsbc Posts: 1
    I want to know if anyone else is having this problem with their van.
    Recently I have been hearing screaching noise when turning around corners and turning on and off highway ramps.When you do a slow turn around corners then you don't hear the noise but when you do a medium to harder turn you would hear the noise.The screaching noise is located in the back wheels.Leaning toward a side would make it screach too.
    I took it to the dealer and they said that it was a normal thing and that it was the sound of the tire hitting the cement.I didn't trust that dealer and wanted a second opinion so I took it to a another dealer and the mechanic guy said it was the alignment.I was willing to pay for that to get fix but before they did anything they told me that the same mechanic took 3 other sienna van of the same year out for the same test drive and that they did the same thing(making that noise during turns).They then told me it was normal and that they didn't have to fix the alignment on the van.
    I still do not believe any of them cause for one thing they may not want to fix the problem cause I think it would cost them if it isn't the alignment(my vans a 2001 with only 18,000 miles on it) and also I don't think that you would be hearing this screaching noise like 5 times a day during turns.For the last month and a half the screaching noises were getting louder and more noticable(I must of heard it more then a 100 times).
    If this is a normal thing then I do not want anything to do with this van cause I do not want to be hearing that noise all the time.I bought the van brand new(it was ship in for me)and had it for 2 years and two months.For the last two years I never ever heard it and then all of a sudden this thing just shows up and they tell me its normal.If anyone out there can tell me if there van makes this noise and that its not a problem then I would be willing to accept that but for now I have my doubt.
  • jelhz43njelhz43n Posts: 44
    My 2001 LE with 20K+ screeches when I apply brake :) (Just like in movies !!!!) but no noise during turn.
    And I usually take turn at a speed usually 10 mph more than the posted limit, say with limit of 20 mph , I go at it with 30 mph !
    Get the van checked at different dealer.

  • seinmyintseinmyint Posts: 3
    I bought 2004 Sienna XLE Ltd. I was not told that RUNNING BOARD is an option.
    When I ask my dealer, it is found out that RUNNING BOARD can only be added at the factory. Toyota does not shop this option as after-factory.

    If I get it, it is feasible to installed in dealer? Any suggestion? Thanks.
  • deepandeepan Posts: 342
    the trans warranty is 8yr/160k kms which ever comes first. You need to do flush or drain every 48k kms.
  • Thank all for the opinions.

    I did contact the Toyota Motor, Inc. and was told that they did not want to go against the dealer's decision.

    I did try not to pay the $2500, however, I have to get my vehicle to work and the dealer did not allow me to drive it out without paying anything. The manager was really rude and discriminative. I am a immigrant. I could tell he did not like me as a customer at all.

    This has been my fifth Toyota vehicle. After this $2500, Now I think I will not buy another Toyota for the rest of my life.

    I will try to get some legal advice and see if I can take them to the court.

    Question: If I see legal procedure, should I take Toyota Motor only, or should take both the dealer and Toyota Motor?

    Thank you all again!
  • diydiydiydiydiydiy Posts: 1
    I have a 98 Sienna SE w/40K, squealed on turns from day one. Had the alignment checked, adjustments made, still squealed. Dealer eventually said, I'm steering "too aggressive" (entrance ramp says 20mph, I squealed!)
    So, I just got used to it.
    I decided to replace the tires at 32K, but had some good tread left. I decided to upgrade to a wider tire, Dayton HR. I got the recommendation on the web "somewhere". WOW, handles great now, I enjoy driving it. No more noises. Cornering is much improved, less body roll due to stiffer sidewall. BUT, the tires are wider and going uphill (steep) in the snow is noticeably harder. (so I, go a different route). If you do a lot of snow driving, I would NOT recommend this tire. Also, tends to be a bit rougher ride - not too harsh though. I would recommend you look into new tires if the noise bothers you. Look at which tires other people used with good results... the tires that came with my van when new were lousy.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,683
    Most states have a consumer protection division, usually in the state attorney general's office. Many have special auto fraud units. Check your phone book - they should be able to give you some free advice to get you pointed in the right direction.

    Steve, Host
  • toyoguy2toyoguy2 Posts: 9
    I have the 99 XLE just purchased recently,having problem with the passenger side seat belt warning light. My problem is when the front passenger bugle up the light starts flashing and turn off once a while, but when they don't bugle up the light won't come on flashing. while it is doing it reversely? Anyone Help please.....Also anyone have their front strut change yet , are they very costly, Is KYB a good replacement for OEM....
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