Howdy, Stranger!

It looks like you're new here. If you want to get involved, click one of these buttons!

Toyota Avalon Engine Questions



  • abfischabfisch Posts: 591

    I have 40K on my 02 Avalon. I change the oil every 5K, almost on the decimel. I use regular or blend during the months other than winter (North Country) where I use Mobil 1 synthetic 0W-30 (Viscosity is superior in temps below 0 F.)

    I have NO sludge problem. I do not burn any oil.

  • smoore5smoore5 Posts: 8
    I have a 2000 Avalon XLS. I had sludge problems and needed a ring and valve job at 26,000 km. I used a little oil after the rebuild but the car has been running fine until very recently. I now have 77,310 km on it and my lease is up in two weeks. I have changed oil religiously at about 6000 km or less since the rebuild. I had my last change at 75,090 km on February 5th. I checked the oil about two weeks ago and it was fine. However, in the last day or so I started to notice the oil pressure light coming on when I braked. I checked the oil today and had to add 3 litres (about 3 American quarts)to get it up to full in the diptstick. There is no oil on the garage floor so I must be burning it. That is 3 litres in less than 2300 km and probably less that 1500 km.

    I know they extended the oil for sludging problem to 8? years. I could just keep filling it with oil and turn it in at the end of the lease and shut up. I have the receipts to show that I did all of the required maintenance. I am wondering if there is any other explanation for the oil use?

    I would prefer to come clean now and get the car fixed before it comes off lease. Any suggestions? Thanks for your help.
  • lyn03lyn03 Posts: 5
    smoore5, please read my post #223.
  • smoore5smoore5 Posts: 8
    Thanks Lyn03, I read the post. I decided to go to the dealer today and advise them of the problem. Service wasn't open so there wasn't much they could do.

    I was told that the car must be fixed before I can surrender it at the end of the lease, even if the problem is covered by the warranty.

    I strongly suspect that I am going to need a complete rebuild just like I had at 26,000 km. I probably won't see the car again because the lease is up at on March 22nd.

    Does anyone know if the extended warranty for the oil sludge problem entitles you to a loaner?
  • scoti1scoti1 Posts: 676
    smoore5, yes, you are supposed to get a loaner while the sludge repairs are being done.
  • ecoguyecoguy Posts: 3
    I own a 2003 Avalon XL that has about 9000 miles on it. From the time it had only 300 miles, I have been feeling a vibration through the gas pedal and steering wheel when the engine is turning between 1400 and 1800 RPMs. This only occurs when the car is in gear (and it occurs consistently in all gears during normal driving). The vibration is also transmitting itself through the dashboard because I can often hear a buzz sound along with what I can feel. I had a local Toyota dealer check it out at 1000 miles and the mechanic wrote "Vibration from pedal is normal from electronic. Throttle control actuctor is normal." I brought the car to another dealer at 2700 miles and actually went on a drive with the mechanic (I took the day off from work). He heard the buzz, but could not diagnose the source of the vibration. I took the car back to the first dealer last week and was told that they could not feel the vibration.

    I've searched the major Avalon discussions and have not found anything like this. Has anyone else experienced this type of problem?
  • nomad56nomad56 Posts: 134
    Sorry so slow to get back... I'm travelling alot right now, and my time on the PC is brief. I don't have an answer though. I would have written it off as "harmonic vibration/resonance" This happens on many cars, and is usually left to an RPM range that is out of an engines "cruising" speed. ...but, then you say it vibrates your dash??? Sounds too strong to be resonant frequencies???? You also say it can be felt in the steering wheel, Wow! It sounds to me like the vibration is in the front of the "car", not necessarily the throttle pedal, which is electronic and NOT physically connected to the engine. I would troubleshoot this by putting the rear wheels/tires on the front(be sure all tires are moving in the right direction, if they are directional) and driving the car. If it goes away, it's a resonant vibration in the wheels, even though they are "balanced". 1) RE-balance them. 2) Inspect tires for irregular treadwear, which can cause this 3) Research the tires you have and see if they are known for this (more common in a truck's aggressive tread tire). Finally, I would go drive another Avy, or two, and see if they do it. Let us know how you progress -nomad56-
  • ecoguyecoguy Posts: 3
    Thank you, Nomad56, for your thoughts on my vibration issue. I'm a bit confused by your suggestions about the tires. The vibration occurs at a specfic RPM range (1400-1600) and is not related road speed. The vibration actually stops when I let up on the gas pedal (because this causes the RPMs to decrease). I agree that I should try driving another Avalon as a comparison. I'll try to arrange that with the dealer.
  • ecoguyecoguy Posts: 3
    I meant to say 1400 to 1800 RPMs in my previous post (#396).
  • nomad56nomad56 Posts: 134
    Ecoguy-The tires and wheels can have vibration at certain speeds/ranges, with various causes(Sometimes "cupped" treads on tires can cause this). This is a "resonant" frequency. When you let off the accelerator, the wheels are no longer directly connected to the driveline. You are, effectively, "freewheeling". Like when you stop pedaling your bike. This is why I think (or GUESS???) it may go away. NOT because RPM's are down, but because the vibration is not being transferred back to the car, through the tranny. I would, also, try this: 1) Get the car up to 60+ mph, then let it coast and rev the engine to the 14-1800 rpm range, and see if the vibration is there. Then... 2) I would swap the tires, see if that is a "fix". If it is, I rebalance what are NOW the rear wheels/tires. -nomad56-
  • normnorm Posts: 2
    This will happen if the gas cap is not tightened. Indicates that cannister may be leaking.
  • Occasionally my Avalon with 61,000 miles chugs and acts like it wants to stall at idle. It also starts to skip at 6200 RPMs. Any ideas? It had the complete 60K dealer servicing done.
  • nomad56nomad56 Posts: 134
    If it is "chugging" occasionally at startup, what are those conditions??? With very little info, I can only guess. Sounds like a sensor. ECU is getting bad info and making improper adjustments to idle speed, air:fuel mix, etc...

    The "chug" at 6200 RPM sounds like you are hitting the REV limiter, which I think is at 6300 on these cars. -nomad56-
  • Thanks. This chugging at low speeds has happened three times after driving around 30 miles. Seems odd that there is a rev limiter if it shows up to 8000 but that could be.
  • rmsachsrmsachs Posts: 6
    My '00 XLS Avalon with 52K miles occasionally knocks going up slow inclines in high gear. I've been using regular gas since day 1, but this only happened beginning about 4 months ago. I thought the computer was supposed to adjust the engine for the given gas mixture. Is there a sensor or computer problem? Do I need a tuneup yet (never done)? I change oil and air filters regularly according to book maintenance schedule.

    Another clue. Maybe unrelated, but after a leaving a rest-stop on a long highway drive 2 days ago, my check-engine light and VSC lights went on and stayed on. Otherwise, engine performance and gas mileage are just fine. My gas-cap was tightened correctly (which was the cause of the same problem two years ago). I have an appointment at the dealer tomorrow to read the computer and reset the lights. I want to be prepared to accept or reject any service they recommend (like an engine flush).
  • The computer has limits on the amount of adjustments that can be made to stop knocking (usually timing is reduced). Deposits inside the combustion chamber can significanly raise octane requirements. The fact that the check engine light came on and stayed on is an indication that something isn't working properly.

    Please post the results of your dealer's diagnosis.

    I had a Mazda 626 GT a number of years ago that did the same kind of knocking going up slight inclines in high gear. Like your Avalon, the problem began after many thousands of miles had been put on the car. I was already using premium gasoline and the knock sensor was working properly. I found the timing when the car was built was set 2 degrees higher than specification. Reducing the timing to specification permanently eliminated the knocking.
  • rmsachsrmsachs Posts: 6
    My dealer in NJ found two sets of codes. The computer was reset and the car runs fine.

    Code P0171 indicated the Mass Air flow meter needed cleaning. This could have triggered the check engine light. This could also explain the knocking problem. The car runs smooth now with no knocking.

    Codes C1301 and C0215 relate to independent tire spin in rear wheels compared to fronts. I had my wheels alligned about 500 miles prior to the incident that caused the check engine light to go on. But the dealer speculated that these codes could have been stored, and the VSC lights then went on after the air-flow meter problem caused the check-engine light to appear on.
  • txgeezertxgeezer Posts: 12
    An official Toyota document I read (like, the owner's manual) said that occasional knocking going up an incline is normal and no big deal. I'll try to find the source if you make me.
  • txgeezertxgeezer Posts: 12
    Ideas? Yeah, one. Stop going over the redline. That would be 6,000 RPM.
  • john609john609 Posts: 10
    Has anyone received a check "engine light" where the trouble code tied back to "Random Misfire" or "Random Misfire in Cylinders 1, 3, & 5"?

    In all cases, my car went over a bump while coasting when the light activated.

    My independent mechanic said it was an electrical wire probably loose.

    I'm thinking it could be a fuel injector (or 2) going bad. Any thoughts?
  • I had the same problem with my 2001 Avalon. I took it to dealer and they had to take the engine apart and clean. The problem is that the engine oil gelled -- I found out this a problem with many Avalons and Toyota created an 8 year warranty rather than a recall. So bottom line -- you should not have to pay a dime for this and there is no way it should take them longer than a couple days to fix it!
  • deepandeepan Posts: 342
    i recently bought a 96 avalon with 146k kms. one owner and have full service history. maintained at the dealership. regular oil changes. do folks do engine flushes once in a while. these are put into the crancase and 5 mins later need to do a oil change. recently had the timing belt done and the engine looks clean although the oil after 3k kms is
    a bit brown.
  • It's not the wheels. I have the same problem with a 1990 4Runner V6 (believe it or not). Put the vehicle in drive, hold down on the brakes and get the motor up to the same rpm range and you can duplicate the noise. Maybe exhaust crossover pipe. I don't know and neither does my local Toyota dealer.
  • I bought a very nice, immaculate 2003 Avalon, but it proves to have a serious problem with white smoke & engine sludge. The dealership has cleaned it, & claims to have put in a new short block, but the problem is still there. What puzzles me is why they haven't just put in a new cylinder head--Any experience/ideas about this?
  • scoti1scoti1 Posts: 676
    Did Toyota do your sludge cleaning under warranty? Just curious because the extended sludge policy (8 years, unlimited miles) was for 1997 - 2002 models. I was wondering if they extended it.


    What do you mean by the problem still being there?
  • dodgedodge Posts: 25
    Hello i currently own a 2000 avalon and i want to get more horse power from it is there any perfomance upgrades on the market that works to get more horse power?
  • Has anyone noticed a hotrod-like engine intake grumble upon throttle tip-in in gear? Ducts are tight, dealer says they all do it. Is there a problem with my car or is this another case of value engineering-ie the old guys won't hear it so let it go? Ideas? Fixes?
  • abfischabfisch Posts: 591

    You could put a High performance air filter in. That may do something, but I would not mess around with this engine too much. They just have too much electronic componetry to mess with, and having a first model year (2000) I would hesitate.

    The suspension is something different. Same as the old Camry and ES300. You can put on Tokico HP shocks, and Energy Suspension sway bars PU bushings as well as front control arm bushing. The handling will change substantially.

  • gazer1gazer1 Posts: 2

    Please advise me. I am very worried.

    I bought 1999 Avalon XL with 90K miles in ebay. I found the previous owner didn't do anything except oil change. Immediately, I did
    - All brakes and all tires.
    - trunk release cable.
    - Charcoal canister at dealer.

    The car WAS GREAT. It gave 27 miles/gallon (I drive slowly on highway) and was very powerful and smooth.

    Then, the problem came. I saw SIGNIFICANT power loss and the gas mileage dropped to 24m/gallon.

    I checked and found that the transmission fluid was BROWN. I went to VALVOLINE (was it a mistake???) to flush the transmission fluid completely. I am NOT sure if they used the correct fluid. After then, the power loss became MUCH WORSE and gas mileage became 21m/gallon on highway. I feel as if I am towing a heavy trailer.

    I will do spark plug change. But there must be some bigger problems. No check engine light is on....

    Please advise me. Thanks.
  • finfin atlantaPosts: 591
    Avalons get more than 21 mpg on the highway so, yes, there is something else wrong. Start with checking the engine and if all is fine move to the transmission again. BUT, could the brakes be dragging? Who fixed the brakes? Was the job done properly? Just a thought...
    A Toyota dealer or a good independent garage should be able to find the problem. But you do have a problem at 21 mpg highway and it is probably not the sparkplugs.
Sign In or Register to comment.