Lexus LS Dealers and Service Issues

bda1bda1 Member Posts: 3
Has anyone experienced noisy (squeaky) brakes on the LS430? Has the problem been resolved successfully and how?


  • anthonyp1anthonyp1 Member Posts: 27
    I heard a momentary grinding sound one time when it was foggy. only once. Tony
  • bcleepebcleepe Member Posts: 53
    Was it with the windows up or down? With the windows up, I can hardly hear anything outside. A couple times I heard some minor rattle noise from the trunk area but wasn't able to ID it.
  • mheni1mheni1 Member Posts: 41
    Navigation system came with my new LS430...version 2000--I believe. When will 2002 upgrade be available? Will Lexus notify ?
  • dealerbasherdealerbasher Member Posts: 3
    Folks, I have to confess -- I can't stand any rattles or noises in the car. That's why I am looking forward to driving a Lexus. Of course, I could probably afford only a used one, maybe 1995-1997. All cars I had until now (even new ones) literally drive me crazy with rattles, squeaks, and other noises. Lexus LS400 has a vault-quiet reputation. Is it true?
    Also, how was your dealer experience? I had awful experience with Toyota dealers, hope it's not the case with Lexus. If you can recommend a Colorado dealership I would be most grateful. Thank you.
  • stickballstickball Member Posts: 2
    Hi folks... I have a 94 LS400 and just love the car. Best car I ever owned. I bought it a year ago with 100K miles on it, and the previous (and only...) owner kept it in immaculate shape with full service records. Just before I bought it (like a week before...), it had a major service done, including timing belt, tires, alignment, belts, fluids, nuts & bolts, etc. I've taken it religiously to the dealer for 5k oil changes. Vehicle currently has 115k on it. Now the dealer tells me I'm gonna need a $900 service to change plugs, fluids, etc. Tell me... is it worth it? Am I being snookered here? Thanks for the input...
  • trmgatrmga Member Posts: 50
    Stickball--I have a 93 GS-300 with 123,000 miles on it. Bought it new. I have only taken it to the Lexus dealer once. That was for the free 5,000 mile check and oil change. Only other maintenance was at about 80,000 miles and that was to have the trunk lid struts replaced, timing belt replaced, water pump replaced--belt and pump was strictly preventative maintenance and it was done at a Toyota dealer for just about 1/2 the cost that the Lexus dealer would have charged. All oil changes have been done at the local Toyota dealership for about $20 each time. The Lexus dealerships are a huge rip off. Read the owner's manual and you will see that most everything is "check and inspect". That's BS. Change the oil regularly, keep good records and you will have no warranty problems. As the car gets older find a good, reliable, foreign car repair shop and let them do the work. Make sure you get good references however before you go to one of them. My car looks and runs like new. Zaino it once or twice a year as it gets older and it will always look new. Hope this saves you many thousands of dollars over the years. It has me.
  • stickballstickball Member Posts: 2
    Thanks for the informative message. I'll check around for Toyota dealers that handle Lexus oil change. Actually, I called the nearest toyota dealer once for that and was told that they couldn't get the oil filter for the vehicle. I'll try other Toyota dealers. I REALLY hate getting ripped off by dealer service shops, and I'll do almost anything to avoid them. You wouldn't know a good repair shop in Atlanta, would you...? :)

    Thanks again...
  • trmgatrmga Member Posts: 50
    Sorry Stickball. I'm in Wiliamsburg, VA.
  • tle104tle104 Member Posts: 5
    It not an ad.I have 5 LS-400,(91,93,94,96 &97) all are taken care by this shop, changed oil @ 3,000 miles w/ synthetic oil ( a little bit expensive but worth for a lexus ), brake works, alternator, antenna replaced.......Because All my 400 are very reliable so no need big engine work since 96.Great place for maintenance works.The owner wife owns a LS 400- 1998, mecanician drive a Ls 400-1994.So it's a very good place to trust w/ very reasonable price.
    Name :Summit auto service, DECATUR 404-373-7070. Japanese cars only, not german or domestic cars.
  • wgg1wgg1 Member Posts: 2
    I was warned by the Lexus service dept. not to use any of the quick oil change services such as Oil Express, Jiffy Lube, etc because the LS 430 is unique or difficult (? in some way) to do an oil/filter change. They told a story where the oil was not replaced properly and ruined the engine. The cost difference is about $75, not to mention the hassle. Any feedback will be appreciated
  • barrynjbarrynj Member Posts: 1
    I just purchased this car from a single owner who maintained well at dealer all the time.
    I am getting Engine Check light. I checked all the fluids, they are OK. Should I take to dealer?
    Any suggestions? barrynj
  • herschel53herschel53 Member Posts: 10
    Hi folks...from reading previous posts, I'm getting the impression that many of you have a low opinion of Lexus dealer service shops. Is this pretty universal?
    I've been buying used luxury cars; until a recent job change, I used to commute 50 miles each way and ended up putting on 25-30K miles per year, so my used luxury cars, if not high mileage when I bought them, ended up being high mileage.
    Currently I have a 95 Cad deVille, which was pretty reliable until I hit 150K miles, then it's $500 here and $1000 there every 6-10 weeks. I've been using a local independent shop and the dealer to make repairs. My Cad dealer service advisor is arrogant, condescending, and intimidating and I'm determined not to buy another Cad.
    The relevance here is that I'm contemplating buying a 96-97 LS 400. (I have a friend who is an independent used car dealer and can get me a good price, so I won't buy it from a Lexus dealer.) My concern is that I'm hesitant because the local Lexus dealer/service shop is owned by the same company that owns the Cad dealership. My questions:
    1) Do the BAD Lexus dealer shops outnumber the GOOD Lexus dealer service shops?
    2) Anyone have any insight to these multi-brand dealership "families"? Is there any possibility that the Lexus service shop might be managed better than the Cad shop?
    3)Is there any repair on a LS400 that can't be done by an independent shop? Do I need to have a relationship with the dealer?
    Thanks for any input--
  • aklein2aklein2 Member Posts: 18
    I've used both the Lexus of Alexandria and Lexus of Rockville in the DC area. Both are excellent, but expensive (Alexandria more so than Rockville). They are honest, forthright and a pleasure to deal with. Except for replacement of my GS 400 remote door device (front right), neither my wife nor I, in 12 years of Lexus, have ever had anything done to them other than the "big" check-ups. We change oil elsewhere -- and cheaper.
  • andrewspandrewsp Member Posts: 1
    I am thinking about purchasing a new LS 430 within the next 6 months. Can someone give me some insights concerning a fair price range that was paid for a new LS 430 in 2002? Additionally, can someone give me insights on the cost of maintenance work for the LS 430?
  • stevesteinstevestein Member Posts: 263
    at my dealership, Ray Catena in NJ. They also sell Jaguar, MB and some other brands in different stores.
    Service isn't inexpensive, but I get first class service, i.e.:
    Current year Lexus as free loaner
    Limo service to local mall or other location
    free food and beverages
    nice lounge with TV
    putting green
    computer driven virtual golf (hit ball into a screen and see where it ends up) with a series courses available. Bummer here is I don't play any better!
    and other touches.
  • pedroncpedronc Member Posts: 3
    Posted this in the bigger chat room (#918). A little over a year ago my digital dash failed when the outside temp was 32 degrees. It now does it below 60 degrees but once the cabin temp reaches warm, it starts flickering and finally comes on to stay. Takes about 10 to 15 minutes. I really consider it a safety factor as much as an inconvenience, i.e. no rpm, no speedometer, no gear position to name a few. Have seen this problem in the big LS400 chats, but no resolutions yet. Can you help? Facing cooler weather here now in North Carolina.
  • lex2003lex2003 Member Posts: 4
    trmga- what is the address and phone number of this good repair shop? I will be getting a lexus soon, and if this repair shop is good then i will take it their although i live in Hampton- thanks
  • lex2003lex2003 Member Posts: 4
  • egomanegoman Member Posts: 2
    I am always amazed that people will spend thousands of dollars on a premium product and then jeopardize future enjoyment by turning it over to non-qualified technicians or possibly ending up with used/substandard parts.

    Look, no one wants to throw good money away needlessly, but these type of vehicles are not disposable or simple. They are extremely sophisticated and if you truly want years of happiness, belly up to the bar, pay the piper and move on.

    And no, I do not work for any automotive company. I do work for a producer of luxury jewelry and watches. The same applies here. Why spend $20k on a wristwatch and take it to someone who is not qualified or experienced and may not use appropriate parts?? This makes no sense. But hey, this is America, it is your car. Go ahead and roll the dice if you want.

    Finally, I currently have a 98 MB E320, completely serviced at dealerships. While I have had no problems with the vehicle, my next car will probably be a Lexus because MB service is awful. No loaner vehicles, poor waiting areas, waiting for appointments. As anyone can see above, I will pay for premium service, but MB is not even in the game compared to Lexus.

    Peace... Egoman
  • powerglidepowerglide Member Posts: 1
    I'm a proud LS400 owner & also have 2 Toyota Cam's,which are excellent vehicles. The 92 has 205,000 miles and has been passed to my son in college & runs like a kitten. I refused to drive a Lexus until I knew I could get one as all the reading on them captivated me & I hoped..."One Day". Well I wasn't ready but drove one anyway,
    & was thinking.."New Avalon or used Lexus". This went on 4 6 months until a guy put it all in a nut shell. "The Avalon is a great car, But if U got one...evrytime U saw a Lexus...U would wish
    U had chosen that"...But in a lexus, Yuo will just smile & b glad U choose it. Best Car I have ever owned & driven. I have quickly put 80,000 trouble free miles on it & plan to drive it until I can get me the used 2001 or 2002.
  • ahlick2ahlick2 Member Posts: 1
    I had always heard about the great service of Lexus, but so far I am very disappointed. I bought a used LS430 with 13,000 miles in Oct. 2002. I took to dealer for 15,000 mile check up. What a joke, one dealer wanted $495.00 The other dealer wanted $250.00 They said they check the computer to see if any faults show up. However it doesn't show up on the service order. When I paid the bill I asked about this and said that even though it does not show up on the service bill, they always do this on the 15,000 checkup. I suppose net they were going to offer me swamp property in Florida. I called Lexus Customer Service and was given no satisfaction at all. I requested to do a service survey and they put me into their automated survey in which I did not give them very high marks. I called again to Customer Service and again no satisfaction, their favorite saying is they are independent business people and they can charge what they want and perform different services even though it is the same 15,000 service. I have had Acura's for 10 years and wanted to try something different and I can tell you compared to Acura and Infinity, Lexus is not even on the same planet. What a disappointment.
  • stevesteinstevestein Member Posts: 263
    I had my 15K last week. It cost $275 and I got a detailed explanation of what was done, a new ES for a loaner and just great service all around. I'd blame the dealer, not the brand. I don't know about an "automated survey" but I always get one in the mail from Lexus. From the emphasis my dealer places on getting good grades I think these matter to them. I'd make my disappointment known to Lexus.

    As to the price, they are correct there. A "standard" service has certain minmimum required parts, some Lexus recommended parts and a dealer can also add their own items to the list. You ought to be able to review these services and decline some. The price for a given service is also set at the dealers discretion, as each dealership has their own hourly rate, overhead and profit margin.

    Service issues aside, I hope you enjoy the LS as much as I am.
  • archer4archer4 Member Posts: 1
    Using the same dealer as stevestein, I have had just the opposite experience.
    So bad that I had to go to "Lexus". I do not consider replacing windshield wiper blades at 18 months a necessity. As stevestein said the dealer has their own items, mostly big profit items. These are know in the trade a gravy items. Pure profit, your order writer is trained to include these items in your write-up and if they forget the computer adds them.
    Just get a copy of "Automotive News" and read for yourself.
    My guess is the stevestein is employed by Catena or a friend of the dealer.
    I’ve purchased new autos since 1960, most cannot be trusted, and Lexus is not different.
    Lexus has a mailing address in your owner’s manual, and they do get back to you. It may take awhile but it is worth the wait.
    This is how I got satisfaction from the dealer.
  • stevesteinstevestein Member Posts: 263
    Sorry, but I don't know Ray Catena (or anyone that works for him other than those I met during the purchase and service). I certainly don't work for him. My previous cars were MB from the competitor in Oceanport, and this is my first Lexus and Catena family of dealerships car.
    I find it amusing that you would just jump to that conclusion because I tried to explain things to the previous poster I had to be a mole for the dealer. Is this another symptom of 30+ years of distrusting people? Didn't you get the same opportunity to discuss things with the service advisor, and have to sign the workorder before anything was done just as I did?

    I am happy with the service I've gotten. Yes I can change my wiper blades cheaper, but you know what, I tend to procrastinate and blurry windshields in the rain are dangerous, so I don't mind them doing it for me. Same goes for checking fluid levels. Oh, by the way, I let them do it at the Chevy dealer on my wife's Blazer too, only they don't offer the loaner, snacks & beverages, virtual golf, etc. that I have available at my Lexus dealer. I know I'm paying for all this, but again, I don't care. Same reason I don't stay in a Motel 8 when I travel. It may also have beds, TV and clean sheets, but I prefer to pay extra for a Hyatt.
  • eagle3eagle3 Member Posts: 7
    I took my 95 LS400 to an independent shop yesterday for the 90K service. This shop has been recommended by a couple of friends who swear they are super competent AND inexpensive. A couple hours after leaving it I get a call from them that I have a problem in the suspension and need what sounded like "low boy choi" (seriously!...they are Asian and their English is so so). The price for replacing "low boy choi" was $390 for parts and labor for both sides. I asked him what this was, and he just said that if these parts in the suspension system go completely out later, I would have serious problems, even though currently there are no obvious "symptoms". The English problem made it difficult to converse with him about it.
    Anyway, does anyone know a suspension part that could sound like "low boy choi"?
  • elmer3elmer3 Member Posts: 20
    Has anyone had any experience with Lexus of North Hills (Wexford) Penna ? If so please feed back to me. Thanks Elmer
  • silcossilcos Member Posts: 7
    Sounds like your universal joints(lower ball joint). With 90k, they probably are right. You probably heard some rattling or clicking in the suspension over rough roads? This is not an item you want to put off if it is in need of replacement. Consequences of failed ball joint are serious(damage/injury).
  • famwaldfamwald Member Posts: 114
    I agree with 'silco' --- I help teach English as a second/foreign language in Adult Ed. to quite a few Asians and "Lower Ball Joint" sounds like what they were trying to say.

    Best thing to do is repeat that back to them and if they say "yes", that's it.
  • rennyboschrennybosch Member Posts: 329
    I took my 2004 LS430 in to Newport Lexus in Newport Beach, CA, for a 50,000 mile service. They called me and said I need to have both front and rear brakes redone -- replace pads and machine rotors, for about $850. I said OK, do it. When I picked up the car the total came to $1,111.

    That sounded a little stiff to me, so I called Lexus Mission Viejo and asked what their price for the same services would be. It came to $850. A 30% premium for going to the nation's newest and biggest dealership!! Not worth it to me. Next time I'm going back to Mission Viejo.
  • patpat Member Posts: 10,421
    How did the $850 they quoted you when they called turn into $1,111 when you picked it up?
  • rennyboschrennybosch Member Posts: 329
    I'm sorry, I didn't say it clearly. The $850 quote was additional to the basic service, for which they had estimated $250, so the total was in accordance with the quote.
  • elmer3elmer3 Member Posts: 20
    I spend at least 3 months in Florida. Can anyone tell me of a positive experience with a Lexus Dealer there. Thanks
  • billsoterbillsoter Member Posts: 49
    I just experienced a weird problem with my 2003 LS430 which I've owned for 3 1/2 years. The car is always garaged and this morning when I went to get it I found all 4 windows about half way down and the moon roof flipped open. The doors were also locked. This happened once before about 2 years ago.
    I can understand triggering the remote control inadvertently since I always have it in my pocket. Or it could be triggered from a spurious source. However, there is no remote control for the windows that I know of.
    Does anyone have any idea what could cause this? Has anyone else experienced it?
  • rennyboschrennybosch Member Posts: 329
    I think that if you hold the Unlock button down for more than a second, it will roll down the windows. Don't know about the moon roof though.
  • rgswrgsw Member Posts: 333
    Need to check the owner's manual. One can open all windows and sunroof by holding the button down for several seconds (in the unlock position). Also, you can open or close all windows and sunroof by inserting the key in the door lock and holding in the unlock or lock position for a few seconds. This feature is useful in warm/hot climates when you want to open all windows and sunroof before you get in the car. Also, did you know your headlights will go "off" after exiting if you click the lock button twice. Lot's of nice stuff.
  • billsoterbillsoter Member Posts: 49
    Thanks for the helpful comments. I guess you learn something new every day.
  • famwaldfamwald Member Posts: 114
    "did you know your headlights will go "off" after exiting if you click the lock button twice. Lot's of nice stuff."

    We have our headlights programmed to go "off" after I turn the car off and open the door. There were three options, I think, that I had to choose from.

    The dealer programs these according to which choice we select, as well as the windows/sunroof feature. They can be changed at the Lexus service department, and perhaps other independents may be able to do it.
  • rgswrgsw Member Posts: 333
    It's my understanding that the Lexus dealer will reprogram selected items "free" (one time)during the first twelve months of ownership. I'm very satisfied with the vehicle the way it was set up at the factory, but pleased that they give me a choice.
  • shop123shop123 Member Posts: 15
    I don't know where in Florida you are, but the following link will provide you with Lexus Elite Dealers for Sales and Service. There should be one near you.
  • akm90046akm90046 Member Posts: 1
    Hello, Need to buy front oxygen sensor, made a research and found out that there are sensors with different quantity of wires, from 1 to 4, does anyone here know how many wires do I need for my 1998 LS400 front and rear sensors? Thanks
  • slexy1slexy1 Member Posts: 38
    I just learned a lesson the hard way. I have an "out of warranty" issue concerning my 2001 LS 430's trunk lid mechanism. I was just told that I should have gone to the dealer I serviced the car at most before I called the Lexus 800 # and got turned down based on the VIN # and records on my car. I am now trying the D.O.M. (District Office Manager) through my main service dealer who is located in Torrance, Ca. Lexus HQ's.

    I blogged about the issue here:

    "2007 Lexus LS 460's Retro 1990 Trunk Lid Mechanism"
  • slexy1slexy1 Member Posts: 38
    I just wanted to clarify what I said above. The reason I got "turned down" by Lexus Corporate and my local dealers (IMO) is that I buy from "people" more than I buy from "companies". By that I mean that I have been giving my Lexus service consumer money to Independent Lexus Service shops more than dealers, ever since my 2001 LS 430 went out of warranty, and "heavy turnover" of employees at my favorite service dealer happened . I was servicing my 1990 LS 400 at a dealer until ("the same thing") incompetent (IMO) upper mgt. at that dealership made many long time mechanics, etc., that I got to know and trust over many years, leave.

    So, when I called the Lexus Customer Satisfaction 800 # about my "safety issue", I found out that they may have looked at how much money I've been spending at the dealerships in recent years. The dealers and their "District Operations Mgr." certainly care about where you get your car serviced, so they may have been influenced by my recent "lack of loyalty" to the dealers. Of course, I'll never know for sure, but it doesn't matter, as I'm thrilled with the Independent Lexus Service in my area.

    Independents are usually former Lexus Master Mechanics that either didn't feel that they were treated right at their dealerships, and/or wanted to have an "equity ownership position" vs. and "employee" position. Even the mechanics that work at the Independents want to get away from certain dealers, and evidently prefer working for the Independents.

    Independents never told me I could not go out into the shop for "insurance reasons" and watch the work being done to my car, if I wanted to (I love an "education" along with my car's service). Independents are less expensive than dealers. Most Independents try to save you money wherever thay can by doing "a la carte" things vs. selling you "package deals" that can include services that "can't hurt", but are not really necessary at that time (IMO). But, even the Independent's "service package deals" are less expensive. I also find that Independents "try harder" in many ways, as they know the dealers make so much more money that the dealers can always provide loner cars, while the Independents only sometimes do, or never at all. Being a business man myself, I know that the dealers have to somehow include the expensive cost of having loner cars in the prices they charge.

    Finally, I never feel like I'm sacrificing quality in any way when I have my Lexus cars serviced at Independents. They can keep up with the latest things going on with all Lexus vehicles. In fact, I believe that Independents actually provide a much needed service for Lexus Corporate, and the dealers. They are an "extra set of eyes and ears" out there in the world to help Lexus customers stay loyal to the Lexus brand, while having the integrity to direct customers who need warranty work done to the dealers (who make money from warranty work!).
  • andyr1andyr1 Member Posts: 1
    I own a '98 LS400 w 176,000 miles - love the car. Before I had and still have a '92 LS400 which now has 265,000 miles.
    "92 was serviced @ both dealer & independents. Most of costly work done on "92 was suspension/wheel related - upper and lower control arms, ball joints, rotors, etc. Also sensors.
    Question - does anyone know if "aftermarket" parts for items listed, supplied by independents, are the equivalent in quality - ie machining, material - of dealer supplied parts???
    I had a bad experience @ a Lexus dealer - could have been very costly - dealership has since changed hands - may give them a try. @ oil change, they told me I need control arms and rotors for '98.
  • sidgriggssidgriggs Member Posts: 122
    I took delivery of an LS460 in June (May build). When I purchased the car I added chrome wheels, which were installed the day of delivery. The next morning, I checked the tire pressure on all 4, with my tire gauge--all 4 were at 33psi, per mfg specs (18" wheels). Looks like everything is fine, but I do make it a habit to manually check my tires every month (always in the morning, after the car has sat overnight, so as to get a good cold tire pressure). When the car was a month old, I checked and all tires were low. I added air to all 4 and decided they must not have seated the new tires well--or something. But, in the past month, I have checked the tires each Sunday morning--and the cold tire pressure (using the same air gauge)has decreased each week, & in every tire. After the last check, I aired all 4 up again! The loss was 2.5 lbs in 3 tires and 3 lbs in tire four. The spare's pressure has remained constant. I am in Dallas, TX, and it is hot here this time of the year. That being said, usually at the first cold snap each year I would loose tire pressure in my prior Lexus models with the tire monitors--I knew, because of the monitor. Have any of you ever had this happen or do you have an explanation?
  • sidgriggssidgriggs Member Posts: 122
    After 3 months of continued air loss, I took my car to my dealer--they remounted all 4 tires and aired them up to 36 psi. I just checked the tires and all 4 are loosing air as before (approx 1/2 lb per week). I plan to give this a couple more weeks to make sure the air loss continues--But who should I contact "Bridgestone or my Lexus dealer"?
  • rennyboschrennybosch Member Posts: 329
    Doesn't this car have a built-in air pressure measuring device? Makes me curious if some leakage in that mechanism could be affecting all four tires at the same time. Seems so unlikely that all four tires (or wheels) would be defective in a similar manner.

    Do let us know when the mystery is resolved.
  • sidgriggssidgriggs Member Posts: 122
    I think the air pressure monitor is by use of a sending unit inside the tire and not a direct connection between all tires and a control.
  • sidgriggssidgriggs Member Posts: 122
    I have been to a Bridgestone dealer--he said air loss is due to chromed wheels. Lexus dealer had my car for 2 days and said there are no detectable leaks AND "a 4psi air loss in a six week period is not abnormal" In all 5 tires--BS. Anyone else have this type of air loss? I have recorded the cold tire pressure weekly for the past 13 weeks. Have added air 3 times and the loss averages 3.5 lbs per month. This does not seem normal to me, but I guess I'll buy an air compressor and keep filling my tires each month.
  • rgswrgsw Member Posts: 333
    I have 2006 LS430 w/ Chrome Wheels and am not experiencing air loss. Sometimes go for over a month with no change.
  • sidgriggssidgriggs Member Posts: 122
    Do you have Bridgestone tires on your LS?
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