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Toyota Camry Rattles

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Comments

  • rlee777rlee777 Posts: 7
    Here is a copy of my usenet post -- just curious to see where the "rattly" Camrys are produced.

    _________________________________________________________________- ____

    Had an opportune chance to test drive and look over two 2003 Camry LEs --
    one produced on Japan and one from Kentucky USA. Now I realize that this is
    only a single sample from each factory, but here are my observations:

    1. The USA model has slightly better bolstering in the seats and apparently
    plusher fabrics.
    2. Japan model has quieter engine (4cyl) and better dash plastics --
    especially the clear plastics (have fewer minute scratches)
    3. Radio sounds a bit better in USA model -- clearer highs and mids --
    guessing speaker quality is better
    4. Japanese car fitted with Bridgestone Potenza RE92s seems to grip better
    on turns than USA Conti A/S Touring. Both tires noisy however.
    5. Paint on lower exterior door panels very smooth in Japanese model; some
    wavy patterns in USA model.
    6. Rattles in USA model during test drive. Most coming from dash and door
    areas. Japanese model solid as a tank.

    Very impressed with the build quality of the Japanese model. Some of the
    parts quality (interior) seems better with the USA car (yes, I know that
    Toyota vendors are required to build according to exact specs). Both
    outstanding cars, but I would prefer the Japanese built Camry.
  • Dropping you windor ever so slightly does minimize the one window rattle however the seat belt adjustor rattle just becomes that much louder!

    If there is a know rattle caused by improper radio installation alluded to several posts up, PELASE ELABORATE!!!!!
  • 98yoda--Sorry I never got back. I haven't gotten a chance to work on the car any further. Truth is, the cacaphony of little rattles doesn't bother me so much with the loud persistant one gone. At least I don't normally hear these over the stereo!

    jtbruin--If you're having to ask about the rattles, I wouldn't worry! The ones I had when I first bought my car were not the kind you had to listen for! I'm guessing they've fixed a lot of these build-quality problems in the past nine months. Also, you can take your Toyota to any dealer--they're glad to do the work as they get paid from Toyota.

    denatz--the one by the windshield, is it persistant? Mine turned out to be a bad weld in the body under the windshield and wiper assemblies. (see my earlier post).

    :)
  • stnickstnick Posts: 177
    Well, I have had my 03 XLE since Feb 21st 03, and at 850 miles. I now have one dash rattle, and at least one persistent one in the front passenger door area. So much for Toyota solving the early rattle problems. Mine was built Dec. 02. Nothing as yet in the B pillars. I took out the glove box and spent a couple of hours looking. I found one of the air duct running across high up in the dash I could make rattle easily. I padded with foam rubber, and thought I had it whipped. But at times its still there. Mine are most notable on our rough brick streets in town and also on sharp cracks or expansion joints on highways. There also seems to be an occasional loud snap once and awhile at the windshield. These noises with the exception of the door rattle seem more prominent in colder weather. I might try to have a dealer find them, but I don't have much hope in them finding them. I am disappointed with these problems, but still like this car alot, especially with gas prices now.
  • In very cold weather I have a rattle coming from the windshield area----Knowing where this rattle might be coming from, do you think the dealer would still have to rip out the dash to check the weld....I know they were on a fact finding mission when they were ripping your car apart but I was wondering, having identified the area, if it was accessible thru some less involved means?
  • 98yoda98yoda Posts: 10
    One of the noises near the radio, believe it or not, was coming from the catylitic converter. The shield around the converter it to close and they have to loosen the bolts readjust the cover and tighten it down. Honestly. Your dealer will have a book full of common known problems with all models and this was under the Camry section. The sound will sound like it is in the center of the dash.
      I was told several different things for my rattle, loose body bolt, loose radio bracket, final lie, oops, solution was a faulty clip on the cowl. Who knows?
       The also had the cracking noise from the front and rear windows. On this I was told when they installed the windows they use a guide pin in the brackets for the windows. The district Rep. had the dealer remove the guide pins. The harsh cracking noise is gone and is replaced with an annoying softer squeaking noise.
        I have a 98 Tacoma also. It is a very rough ride, but it does not make a SOUND. The cars are just getting cheaper. I read before the new style of Camry came out that Toyota's goal was to produce a car to sell for the same price as the previous model but to cost 30 percent less to manufacture. Thus the reason for our rattles and squeaks.
  • Well, so much for my theory that they started fixing the build-quality problems, sine stnick's car is six months' newer than my own. I also like my car a lot, but wouldn't buy another one. The ironic part is that my 10-year-old maxima was starting to rattle so I replaced it with a brand-new rattle trap!

    andrelaplume--I wouldn't suppose that your dash rattle is the same one that they found on my car. I'm kind of getting the impression that these cars rattle all over, and that even Toyota isn't completely knowledgeable about where they all are. (It did take my dealer three days *with constant toyota help* to locate my rattle). No, there was no other way to access it except under the windshield wiper stuff--but I don't think it takes them long to remove that stuff).

    I still say that if you can stand the hastle of dropping the car off and bumming rides, the best way to go is to let the dealer take a crack at it. (Easier if the rattle is persistant).

    98yoda--How many times did you take your camry in for them to fix that dash rattle? The first time I took mine in they glibly told me that they "added some insulation" up under the dash. Well, having been inside my dash many, many times I knew for a fact the next time I was in there that they were not truthful.

    I totally subscribe to the theory that this is an experiment in lowering the cost of the vehicles. The thing that really sucks for me is that I bought the brand based on the reputation, but happened to pick the year that they pulled out all the stops to lower costs!

    The other thing that concerns me is how the rattles seem to "develop" as the first thousand or two miles are put on the car. I can't help but to wonder how many more rattles are going to develop over the next year. I kind of suspect that I should trade it in before it gets too old!
  • stnickstnick Posts: 177
    Thanks for the info on your "behind the radio" dash rattle. I was about to get in there to see what I could find. Since I am some distance from a dealer, I have been trying to solve some of these myself. I will look at the converter shield before I go into the dash. I had thought it was coming from the right side, but when I lean to the center of the car, the noise would move right to the center behind radio. Is that how yours acted? 02camrysowner, that was what I was trying to find out by someone on this board before I bought mine. I had asked one of the dealer guys on this board if the newer production units were better, got no response, guess he didn't know. Nick
  • junepugjunepug Posts: 161
    Here is a link to the TSBs. The one you are looking for is SB628680. The link is:
    http://www.nhtsa.dot.gov/cars/problems/tsb/

    We had the dealer fix this and have not had another rattle with our 2002 LE in the past 7,000 miles.

    Good luck.
  • stnickstnick Posts: 177
    Thanks a bunch, I will look it up and print it out. Thanks for the link, Nick
  • 98yoda98yoda Posts: 10
    stnick,

       The noise will sound like it is moving around. My wife was in the passenger side and I was driving and we heard a new loud rattle. I said it was the passenger side, she said it was the driver's side. We argued for a minute, I stopped the car dead in the middle of the road,(at least the ABS work), and we switched places. NOW I heard it on the drivers side and she heard it on the passenger side. WEIRD. Thank god it was only her sunglasses in the overhead compartment.

       My newest flaw with the car is a gasket between the front and back door. There is a piece of rubber that you can see between the doors when they are shut. This is attached to the back door that can be seen when it is open. The dealer has ordered new one because of "fault clips". It doesn't hurt anything but I bought a Camry so I didn't have to see my dealer. If I wanted to see a dealer this often I would have bought a Chrysler or Ford.
  • 98yoda98yoda Posts: 10
    stnick,

       The noise will sound like it is moving around. My wife was in the passenger side and I was driving and we heard a new loud rattle. I said it was the passenger side, she said it was the driver's side. We argued for a minute, I stopped the car dead in the middle of the road,(at least the ABS work), and we switched places. NOW I heard it on the drivers side and she heard it on the passenger side. WEIRD. Thank god it was only her sunglasses in the overhead compartment.

       My newest flaw with the car is a gasket between the front and back door. There is a piece of rubber that you can see between the doors when they are shut. This is attached to the back door that can be seen when it is open. The dealer has ordered new one because of "fault clips". It doesn't hurt anything but I bought a Camry so I didn't have to see my dealer. If I wanted to see a dealer this often I would have bought a Chrysler or Ford.
  • stnickstnick Posts: 177
    Well, last night I was able to get under the car to inspect and correct if necessary the cat converter heat shield. Unfortunately, it was positioned correctly, and was not the source of this rattle. This morning coming in to work the dash rattle was very apparent on rougher parts of the road. I did check my sun glasses in the holder:). Anyway, I made an appointment this Saturday at a dealership to give them a shot at it. I tried to remove very carefully the dash trim from around the radio, but it was very firm. since I didn't want to damage it, I decided to let dealer try 1st. Usually they just use a push in style clip. I will post the results after Saturdays trip to the dealer, for others here to reference. Thanks, Nick
  • After 2 trips to the dealership for a persistent front passenger door rattle that has returned yet again in my 2003 Camry, I decided to attempt a fix myself.

    I opened up the door and found what is potentially the cause. The inner door fascia has metal hooks at the top that hang onto the framework of the door. Metal on metal. Looked to me like a potential source of clicks, creaks and rattles. My door rattles in exactly the location where the metal hooks hang onto the metal door frame. There are nylon clips and a few screws that secure the inner door fascia to the metal door, but the weight of the fascia is supported by metal hooks at the top.

    I placed a couple of strips of tough foam insulation (not the cheap, soft A/C stuff) on the metal framework where the metal hooks on the fascia rest. After securing the fascia, I took a test drive and heard no rattle. It will take a few days before I know whether or not the fix was effective.

    I've read references to a rattle at the roof liner. I think that Toyota is aware of this particular rattle and has a "shim kit" for it. My 2003 Camry rattled above the rear window. Just a touch of the roof liner above the rear window and I knew exactly where the rattle came from. I cut a strip of 1/2" cylindrical insulation a few inches shorter than the width of the rear window and shoved it between the roof liner and the glass. There is certainly enough of a gap to accommodate the insulation. Again, it will take a few days before I can confirm that this was a good fix, although I am confident that this simple fix worked.

    P.S. I rue the day that I bought my 2003 Camry.
  • 98yoda98yoda Posts: 10
  • 98yoda98yoda Posts: 10
    camrytimes2,

      When you say you opened up the door,did you mean you removed the door panels? If you did, you are a brave man. I am really interested to know if it works? Please keep us informed. I have a vacation planned for mid summer, 6 hours away, and my goal is to have all the squeaks and rattles gone by then.

       Sorry about previous nothing message. Hit the wrong button
  • First here's some info on getting into the dash. The radio trim ring comes up AFTER the climate control panel. So, start with the climate panel, pulling straight out from the bottom (either) corner. Both panels use push in friction clips that come straight out. Same for both vents in the dash near the door windows--they pull straight out. The vent on top of the dash right under the window I found impossible to remove, and wouldn't recommend trying.

    Doors (front) are easy to open up and put back together. Only thing to keep in mind is that when your removing the handle/control assembly it lifts up in the back, then slides out. (After taking the screw out, of course). Don't attempt to pry the front up, or it'll just break a plastic lip that slides under the door panel.

    I've yet to take apart the rear doors, but have taken out all the kick panels, lower door sills, b-pillar covers, etc., if anybody needs info on those. (Stereo installation).
  • I think it is pathetic that it has come to folks having to rip apart their $22K+ Camry's to attempt to fix rattles that the dealers do not know how to fix, or have not been instructed how to fix or for which their simply is no fix due to cut-backs/design flaws at Toyota. As a first time Camry owner who was lured in under the guise of 'it's really very close to a high quality luxury car', I feel ripped off. I encourage eveyone to keep bitching, moaning and complaining and most of all if you subscribe to Consumer Reports be sure to fill out the annual survey an let them know the car's defficiencies. Only when Toyota takes a hit in the pocket will something be done. Keep up the posts---and if solutions are found let us know....
  • stnickstnick Posts: 177
    I got decided to tackle the "behind the radio" rattle discussed earlier. Was going to dealer Saturday to see them about it. Any how, I found that the clock/compass/trip computer module attaches directly to the radio trim bezel which 02camrysowner gave instructions on how to remove in above post. That module is attached with 2 screws, one on each end. They seemed tight, BUT I could wriggle it up and down and it made a rattle noise. I torqued the philips screws a little and that removed the movement. After re assembly, it is now much quieter. How ever I will reserve a victory celebration for a few days. Just keep this one in mind as a possibility. I am still going to the dealer for the right frond door creeking trim, and will ask about the dash rattle. BUT andrelaplume is right about this all being BS.
  • stnickstnick Posts: 177
    Well kids, I will include my experiences today at my closest dealer 45 miles away to have rattles addressed in my previous posts. My own fix post #177 made things more quiet behind the radio, but did not eliminate it. I also had popping noises at times windshield area. I will now tell you all, word for word on the repairs right off the repair ticket. Perhaps this will help some of you with these issues.
    #1,"rattle in center of dash"
     "Raise car on hoist, adjust catalytic converter heat shield vibrating against floor of car"

    #2 "popping noise from windshield"
     "Lower head liner, remove alignment pins on windshield. Remove lower windshield cowl panel. Insulate panel from windshield. Install foam around contact areas. Also Rt A pillar cover. Reass, Test ok."

      I left the dealership with little hope of success for home, a 45 mile drive, 39 degrees outside temp, over highway with very sharp cracks every 20 feet, "radio off". I was pleasantly surprised that the noises were all gone. I am now very happy that I had the dealer try to repair this. This tech knew his stuff. The car is much more enjoyable to drive. Part 2 next post.
  • stnickstnick Posts: 177
    While I was very happy with the tech and dealer and of coarse, We'll see if the repairs hold up, I DO NOT understand why these cars are still being manufactured with these same defects or processes that have caused these problems for almost 2 years. I won't pretend to know that much about manufacturing, but one would think that my car built in Dec. of 02 would not have these same problems as the first runs of the 02's. Certainly these problems should have been corrected at the plant by now, or am I wrong here? Any way, at least give your dealer a try first, and good luck to you all. Sorry for long posts. Nick.
  • In their press release (it's in here somewhere) from last year Toyota said they addressed these issues in the 2002s...an obvious lie. Now they pay the price with CR lowering their rating to AVERAGE and the likes of Honda and worse yet Ford owners laughing it up. Can Toyota turn things around? Well, they did not learn from the sludge issue...loyal owners ignored it. They are not learning from this issue either. Perhaps loyal owners, the ones that make up their base, will swallow thier pride and start complaining. It's sad because if these noises were not so prevalent the car would be great. Many, will say we are in the minority and this will all pass. Hopefully Toypta Corp does not make that mistake. Competition is getting fierce and AVERAGE cars can not cost as much as the Camry does and still sell the units needed to stay in competitve business....
  • My front passenger door rattle returned with the cold weather. Too bad, I enjoyed a few rattle-free days and was happy about it.

    Can you tell me how to fully remove the front door fascia? I have removed the 3 or 4 screws, removed the window & lock module, removed the plastic piece at the front of the window, and popped the nylon fasteners around the perimeter of the fascia. However, the fascia is held securely and pivots at the upper front corner. I do not want to force the fascia off in this area for fear of damaging something.

    Plan B for me is to completely remove the fascia and stow it in the trunk for a few days. My latest hunch is that the fascia itself is weak and is the source of my creaks and rattles. If not, finding the source within the door should be much easier with the fascia removed.

    Thanks.
  • Hi,

    Let's see...it's been six months or so. There is a piece of plastic behind the door release latch, remove it and the screw behind it--sounds like that's the one you missed.

    Sorry it took me a few days to respond--the site was not accepting updates for awhile.

    Derrick
  • Have you had the door pillar apart...where the Seat belt adjustor is located...is it hard....several posts have mentioned tightening a screw in here or putting felt in....I was at the dealer today (of course it did not vibrate or rattle on the very brief test drive) but anyway the guy seamed to acknowlege the issue but did not have a firm fix...more like a 'theres a lot of stuff in the adjustor that can/will/should make noise'. Didn't prior Camry's have this new technology (adjustors)...my other cars never made a peep....
  • Hi,

    No, I never did take the b pillars apart--at least not the upper fascia. I know the lower fascia comes off easily enough, and can't imagine that the upper would be hard to remove.

    My thinking was to remove the upper fascia and place adhesive felt on the back of the fascia where the belt slides contacts the fascia. I would also wiggle everything in there and see what rattles while it's apart. One thing I've noticed is that the buckles hit the pillar if the seatbelt is not in use and the adjuster is not in the highest position.
  • I've opened up the B pillar on the passenger side of my 2003. The lower panel was easy. The upper panel, where the seat belt height adjuster is located, was a bit trickier to reassemble.

    Lower panel: Snaps onto the upper (lighter) portion just below the seam. Reach under the internal (color of interior) weatherstripping type material just below the top of the lower (darker) panel. Pull sideways on each side of the lower panel to unsnap from the upper panel. Note a projection under the rearward side of the panel that will be placed under the black door trim upon reassembly. There is a plastic plug further down the panel. Pull the piece straight out to release that plug from the metal car frame. Even further down, there is another very similar plug. Same deal, but be careful with the lower plug because it isn't secured to the interior panel very well and could fall into the body of the car - never to be seen again!

    Regarding the upper panel that houses the seatbelt height adjuster: It's been so long since I removed that piece that my memory of the details isn't good. I think that it is primarily held in place with clips and plugs. I recall at least one metal clip that slid below the black door trim. I also recall that reassembly was hairy because the chintzy plastic button assembly has to line up with a substantial metal assembly underneath that also has a button on it. In short, the button mechanisms must fit together precisely or the height adjuster will not operate. However, once I figured out how to realign the mechanicals, the plastic part wasn't too bad.
  • ...and did you say that after all that effort your were able to quiet to pillar/adjustor noise?
  • Yes, I found a metal seatbelt guide that was loosely attached (screwed) to the metal body of the B pillar. The metal bracket made quite a "clunk" for such a small piece. If you pull the lower panel away, you may be able to see or feel the bracket. It is at the approximate height at which the upper and lower B pillar panels meet. You can't miss it - there isn't much else in there.

    I also placed some thick a/c foam in strategic locations in the lower B pillar panel. Care was taken to not interfere with seatbelt travel. If you look at the back of the lower B pillar panel, you will find some circular projections. I wonder whether some of those projections, or other parts of the plastic panel tap against the metal B pillar. I also wonder whether the cable at the bottom of the B pillar taps against the plastic. Anyway, I stuffed some foam between the circular projections and the side of the plastic panel in about 3 spots. I figured the foam would stay secure in these locations and never hinder seatbelt operation.

    I still have clicks and creaks all over the place (but not at the B pillars), and am resigned to living with them. However, my front passenger door issue is a true rattle, and I am still working on it. The weather has been too poor lately for me to work on the car.
  • rev4rev4 Posts: 38
    I know that this is not the source of all rattles but some of you might want to check out your sunglasses in your sunglasses holder. I thought I had rattles, but it was my metal rimmed sunglasses in the case. Once I turned them the opposite direction the rattles stopped. The rattle sounded like it came from the center dash or the front passenger door.....but neither was the case. In way, you might want to experiment by taking your sunglasses out or turning them the opposite direction in the holder..........see if some of your rattles disappear...mine did.
  • Those who subscribe to Consumer Reports...the annual questionaire has been sent out. Please relay your feelings about rattles in the appropriate category when you rate your Camry!
  • Perhaps I was overtired, but I was driven to the brink of insanity by the numerous interior rattles in my 2003 Camry last night. The dashboard is getting noisier lately, as well as the rear deck area. The rattles in 3 of the 4 doors have been with the car since day #1.

    I opened up the front passenger door today for about the third time. I've also had the car at the dealership twice for the same rattle. There is a clear plastic liner glued to the metal door frame that obviously had never been touched by dealership techs during either visit. I took the entire inner panel off, examined it and shook it to check for loose parts, then stashed it in the trunk for a test drive. The issues that I found were that the latch cable and the lock cable crossed over each other where I heard the "upper" rattle. I wrapped the cables. There is a foam block attached to the bottom of the inner door liner. It rocked slightly on its permanent (melted plastic) attachment points. I shimmed it with a small piece of foam. This may have accounted for the "lower" rattle, which could easily be mistaken for a B pillar rattle. The clear plastic liner is rigid and crinkly, and a cable or the inner door liner bumping against it might be heard. So, I placed a 16" x 16" piece of felt rug pad over the clear plastic liner before replacing the fascia.

    I've had an intermittent rattle at the top of the driver's side door in the area of the latch/lock mechanisms. The sound was like a cable bumping against something. So, I pulled off the driver's door liner and poked around. By the way, the lower rear clip had been broken at the factory. I surely did not break it, and the broken off head was nowhere to be found. I found that the cable to the mirror was uninsulated and touching the metal door frame. I wrapped it. I also noticed that the "shell" that surrounds the latch and lock mechanisms was very loose in the door liner. I could shake it around in the door liner - the fit was that poor. Since the "shell" is secured to the metal door frame with a screw when the inner door liner is installed, the poor fit probably did not result in a rattle. To be sure while the door was already open, I shimmed the part from behind. Once again, the lock and latch cables crossed over and were uninsulated. I wrapped them while the door was open even though I did not have a rattle in the vicinity. The uninsulated window and lock cables were leaning against the metal door frame, so I wrapped them. Lastly, I also placed a 16" x 16" piece of felt over the clear plastic liner only because I had done the same on the passenger side.

    Time will tell whether my efforts were worthwhile.

    Weather permitting, I'm going to tackle the rear passenger door next week.
  • 98yoda98yoda Posts: 10
    Keep it up camrytimes2. My wife has suggested we rent a van for vacation because I cannot stop complaining about the rattles.
    I hope all your work pays off. If it does I have a friend who is a bodyman who will do the same to my Camry.
    Are you sure the rattle in your dash is not the cat. converter as discussed in previous messages?
  • 98yoda,

    Most of my new dash noises are clicking sounds from the area at which the dash meets the windshield. I think that somebody has commented on this rattle either here or elsewhere. I'll have to research that one.

    Other parts of the dash speak up when the car flexes, typically when I back out of my driveway and onto the street.

    My feeling is that the current, extended Camry platform isn't really as rigid as Toyota claims it is, and body flexion (along with cost cutting design) has contributed to the interior rattles that we hear.

    My two front doors have been better, but the interior rattles are the worst when temps are in the 30's and 40's, so the doors haven't been through thermal testing yet!
  • 98yoda98yoda Posts: 10
    camrytimes2,

        Is it a clicking sound or louder cracking sound from your windshield. If it is a cracking noise, I mentioned in a previous message the the Toyota tech removed guide pins in the brackets that hold the rear window in. I assumed the front window is attached the same.
         If it is a clicking noise it may be a faulty clip in the cowl of the windshield. This is what the shop told me it was and the noise finally went away. Now is that the truth? Who knows.
         Driving home tonite a new noise started coming from our driver side area. I believe I read before that the outside mirror screws were loose and a noise started to come from there. My car has 16,000 miles on it and it is noisier than my 91 nissan with 150,000 miles on it.
        I agree totally with you. I believe it is a much less rigid platform. And the noise drives me insane when it is 30-50 degrees out. That is tough because my car rattles like crazy in the morning when I drive to the dealer. I will check in, wait a while, as my car sits in the sun warming up, and the tech finnaly drives it and says "I don't hear a thing." Reports "cannot duplicate noise." Very, Very frustrating. I
  • junepugjunepug Posts: 161
    We must have only rattle free Camry in existence and believe it or not, the car was asembled in Kentucky.
  • Symptoms: 2002 Camry, 10 months old, 8500 miles. This addresses dash rattles that appear to eminate from the back of the dash towards the windshield. The rattles at times appear to come from the drivers side, center or passenger side. The rattle may sound like a creak, crackle or pop. The rattles are generally worse when the weather is cold. The rattles are present when braking, pulling out, rough road surfaces etc.

    After reading a few posts on possible solutions I decided to stop by the dealer one cold morning and go for a test drive. The tech heard the noise as we drove. He almost immediately thought the noise was actually outside the car and was either windshield clips or the piece of plastic under the wipers but over the windshield. I was skeptical as we drove along because the rattles appeared at different locations. When we stopped I remained in the car at the wheel. He exited the car and closed the door. On the passenger side he started poking around the plastic piece just under the wipers/over the windshield. Sure enough I heard crackling that at first came from the drivers side and then else where as he poked around. He said the noise was actually from outside the car and passing in thru the glass.

    I dropped the car the next day. I have had it back now for four days. The creaking is gone (so far) when I brake or pull out. It also appears to be gone while driving. I HOPE IT LASTS!!!!! Of course now the passenger pillar door rattle is that much louder as is the driver side. I will return to Toyota in a few weeks and give them a shot at fixing this too.

    I too, remain skeptical but those of you waiting for a solution might want to schedule an appt for this fix. It was not very invasive and the chance of it making things worse appears nill. Here is what the work order (covered under warranty of course) said:

    Cowl Panel making contact with windsheild, Tech R&R cowl panel. Installed noise reduction tape and road tested, noise is gone.

    GOOD LUCK!!!!!!!!!!!!!
  • stnickstnick Posts: 177
    I had posted a while back in this thread about the fix on my 03 XLE by dealer. There are some windshield alignment pins used during assembly that will make the noises you describe. They lowered the head liner at the windshield, and removed the cowl panel to remove these pins. Since then I have been without those noises. Post # 178 gives all the details. Good luck, Nick
  • I did see your post and a few similar so I figured I'd bring in my car. The tech was aware of the problem. From what he said they have a way to look up the car and see if the windshield pin fix is necesary or whether t just a matter of instlalling the noise reduction tape. Personally I don't care so long as the rattles are gone! Keep on postin'!
  • I've had my 2003 LE4 Camry (made November 2002) for almost two months now, with 1600 miles on the odo. From day two (day one was a waste as I was on cloud nine), I've heard intermittent snapping/creaking noises coming from the passenger side dash/door area. This seemed to have happened only when the temps were below 50 degrees. I pray I am not jinxing myself, but I think I have rid my car of this noise. The airflow dial for the vent on the passenger side was set somewhere between open and shut. I started moving it back and forth, and it made those same noises. I simply snapped it into the open position, and I've not heard a peep since. It was forty-something this morning, too.

    PS...Love this car!! Bought the split five-spoke alloys, and body-colored mud guards off the Internet. Sharp, sharp, sharp!
  • Thanks for all of the information on the windshield creaks/cracks/rattles. I'm not sure what to make of the sound. To me, it sounds like the top of the dash, very close to the windshield, creaks as the car flexes. This one is new, so I'll give it a bit more time and check the outer cowl, etc. before making a trip to the dealership re: alignment pins.

    I took the rear passenger door liner off today and did some investigation. Unlike the front door liners, the rear door liners do not hang on the metal door frame. Instead, they are just held in place using 5 screws and many plastic fasteners. I found a few spots where the unpadded window/lock harness and the unpadded latch and lock cables were in contact with the metal door frame, so I padded them.

    Interesting to note that the rear interior door fascia has an open gap at the B pillar. For those of you with B pillar rattles, check this one out. Open a rear door and observe/feel the front of the interior door fascia where it meets the metal door frame. The gap that you will find extends right into the door. Could rear door rattles be mistaken for B pillar rattles because of this gap?

    Again, it will take some time and perhaps weather changes before I can report back on rattle reduction.
  • edmund2460edmund2460 Posts: 293
    My instincts from the number of posts reporting rattles are that this looks like an isolated problem. Is that true or is there some web site like the one angry Ford owners had about their head gasket problems (which I found after my 93 Sable blew its gasket) Our new 03 is the VVT-i (HOW DOES ONE TELL THE PRODUCTION DATE - HELP) had about 100 miles on it when we bought it. Not a rattle in sight (or rather hearing) yet. Lowest temp since we bought it has been in 40's.

    Like APlume we are fleeing from Ford/Mercury Taurus and Sable. I think I will be upset too if I had a bunch of rattles. On the other hand I'm betting I won't be replacing darn near everything on the car as I did with the 93 Sable.

    Why are some people here attending on these problems themselves without dealer assitance?
  • edmund2460,

    Congratulations, and I hope that you enjoy your new ride. The new V6 must be a pleasure to drive.

    CR has downgraded the current Camry model because of the interior rattle issue, and Toyota has acknowledged (but not fixed) the interior rattle issue as well.

    I'd like to think that the problem was low volume on 2002's and corrected for 2003, but that was not the case. Many of the rattles are not present during the first few hundred miles but develop during the first few thousand miles. My new dash rattles developed fairly quickly at 6.5k miles.

    The rattles in my car have come so fast and furiously that I probably could make weekly trips to the dealership if you count attempted fixes and attempted refixes. This a summary of the rattles:

    front passenger door
    passenger side B pillar
    rear passenger door
    driver's door
    rear headliner
    rear deck area
    dashboard rattles near windshield (new for Spring)

    I made 2 visits to my dealership to fix a very pronounced rattle in the front passenger door. The rattle was so constant that the dealership service representative heard the rattle as he drove the car 100' over smooth pavement to a parking spot. The rattle was not fixed. When I later opened up the door myself, I noticed that the interior weather liner had not been touched since the car had been assembled - contradicting the information on my completed work report from the dealership.

    I don't work on Fridays and could in fact spend every one of them sitting in the dealership waiting area, or being a crank at the service counter complaining about fixes not performed.

    However, despite my diligence with disassembling the interior of my 2003 Camry in hopes of finding and fixing the sources of rattles, I have placed the issue in perspective and just want the rattles fixed in the most expeditious manner possible. If I must perform the work myself in order to reach my goal of rattle reduction in the most efficient manner possible - so be it.

    In a few years, I will express my confidence in Toyota and American design and assembly quality with my wallet by purchasing another make and most certainly a model of Japanese assembly. Too bad, because my 1997 Camry (assembled in Kentucky) was the best car that I have owned - and I had 3 new Hondas before that.
  • edmund2460edmund2460 Posts: 293
    I hope I don't run into this problem, but it has cast a pall on my purchase in my mind. I'm not handy so I wouldn't dare try to do this.

    Can you have a car 'lemon'ed because of rattles that can't be fixed?
    Are the dealers being cooperative about this and trying to give satisfaction?
    How do I tell the production date on my car? Is it on the sticker somewhere?
    I don't know what the inside of a well designed car's door panel should look like, but do you see signs of poor design that has caused these problems or are they assembly problems. You can design rattles out of a car by having more integrated parts.

    Keep us posted, I hope you soon reach zero rattles.

    This is my wife's car and she is much less tolerant about rattles than I am.
  • edmund2460,

    My car looks very well assembled. Everything lines up, and nothing was askew upon delivery. I found a broken fastener in the driver's door, but that is very minor and there are no overt signs that the car was slapped together. In fact, the paint job is far superior to that of my 1997.

    This has lead me to believe that cost-cutting design deficiencies may play a greater role than final assembly quality in the case of interior rattles. The fact that most of the rattles are temperature sensitive points to same. Cheaper or fewer fasteners? It isn't for nothing that my 1997 and 2003 were 6 years and just a couple of hundred $ apart in price.

    Which brings up the issue of finding rattles. They are so tough to ferret out because the interior looks properly assembled inside and out. That means multiple trips to the dealership can yield no positive result because the rattles are like gremlins. I can fault the dealership for falsifying their completed work reports, but not for having so much trouble finding rattles that may be by design.

    I had the front wheel bearings fail on a Honda at 20k miles. The wheel bearings were replaced and a period was placed at the end of the problem. Not the case with rattles - they are far more difficult to remedy and seem to have 9 lives.

    Aside from interior rattles, the car has been mechanically sound, and the performance gain with the 2.4 liter VVTi engine is significant. I averaged 30.5 MPG's on a recent tankful that was used 80-90% highway.

    I think that the local (Massachusetts) Lemon Law would require me to lose use of the car for X number of days over the same problems. The car runs fine, so I doubt that persistent rattles are covered.

    The rattles have been aptly described here as akin to "water torture", and I agree. That's what drove me to 'open my first door'!

    I believe that a plaque in the driver's doorjam will note the month of manufacture. I found that someone had written 9/26/02 on a metal plate inside my rear passenger door, so I assume that my car was assembled on that date.
  • wainwain Posts: 479
    seems they need to put out a rattle recall.
    my 94 camry is quiet at 105K miles
  • andrelaplumeandrelaplume Posts: 934
    RE: windshield pin fix / noise reduction tape. SEE PRIOR POSTS. After several weeks still no dash noise! Yea! Now I MUST get those door pillar noises and that darn intermitant radio vibration rattle fixed. They are even more annoying now that the dask rattle is gone.
  • jtbruinjtbruin Posts: 40
    My '03 camry le (Japanese made) seems to be developing a soft rattle at 2000 miles. I live in sunny california, so i don't think that it is temperature-related.
        it sounds like light tapping so far and seems to be coming from the steering gauges, or front dash/windshield. It isn't very loud, but seems like it can get annoying. From what you guys are posting so far, it seems that the rattles develope in these first thousand miles, so i'm sure it may develop later. anyone know if this is how their rattle started? should i be concerned? thanks
  • jtbruinjtbruin Posts: 40
    from what everyone is saying, i have a feeling that these rattles develop with more miles. So my question is that if the rattles develop after you are out of your warranty, will Toyota still look at it and repair it at no charge?? any toyota salespeople here know?
  • rev4rev4 Posts: 38
    I made a post quite awhile ago that no one responded to. I discovered that what I thought was a rattle was ACTUALLY MY SUNGLASSES VIBRATING/RATTLING IN THE SUNGLASSES BIN. When I reversed their position in the bin....the rattle stops........when I put them in the wrong way...I get the rattle/vibration again. I discovered, for me, it wasn't the car at all.....but my sunglasses...and I had an easy fix. HAVE ANY OF YOU EXPERIMENTED TO SEE IF SOME OF YOU HAVE THIS SIMPLE SOLUTION???
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