Buying a used ES 300

pudycatzpudycatz Member Posts: 1
Im thinking about buying a used 1998 ES300. Just want to know is there any special routine maint. that has to be done by a dealer or can you get an oil chg at local Jiffy Lube. Also does the ES 300 run on reg or prem. grade gas and what fuel mileage to expect. Ive owned Camry's but i'd like to step up to the Lexus. Thanks for responses


  • sean300sean300 Member Posts: 41
    I bought my '98 es300 back in February from a small used-car dealer. Mileage was 105,000. I got it for $7300 which I was told was a good deal. Before buying it, I took it to the local King Bear for to get it checked out; they said that it was ok but suggested changing the timing belt. After buying it I took it to my mechanic who did a lot of "preventative" maintenance. Belts, all hoses, plugs, fuel filter and transmission service was done (changed fluid, new gasket and filter) as well as valve cover gaskets (leaking). I bought some of the parts but cost me $1000 to do all of that (tech saved me $500) - was well worth it. No problems with car now - just oil changes and rotations; previous owner did not do all maintenance. Not sure if you will have to do all of that but main thing is oil and timing belt. I run the car on regular with no problems - premium is overrated.
  • faldofaldo Member Posts: 3
    I have a 99 ES 300 with 76k miles and it will be 7 years old in October. The schedule indicates to change the timing belt at 97K miles or 6 years. Should I do it now or do you think I can put on another 20k miles.
  • kcownerkcowner Member Posts: 7
    I bought a 1998 ES300 with 94,000 mi. at the time of purchase. It had previously been in the Certified Program. The timing belt had never been changed, so I asked the same question at the Lexus dealer. I was told that as long as the car has not been subjected to "taxi cab" type driving with a lot of stop and go driving, the belt should last through the scheduled change time. I now have 108,000 and still haven't changed it, but I will at the next maintenance opportunity.
  • faldofaldo Member Posts: 3
    Thanks, based on your experience, I will wait.
  • lexus12lexus12 Member Posts: 1
    Hye everybody I am a new member and I want to ask you about lexus es 300 model 98 or 97 or 99 is it a good car to own and is it a very stronge car for bad roads and I want to ask you about the differences among these models 97-98-99-2000 .

    and if you have some good pictures for it please put them with the answere. :) :lemon:
  • kaldkald Member Posts: 1
    hi all.. im new to this, but im after some advice.. i bought a used ES 300 m reg it has got a 155 miles on it, but since i have had it the engine has been over heating, i noticed a hose had split in the engine i have took it off to get a new one but as i live in liverpool, uk, i am having trouble getting one as they dont know which hose it is.. i think it is the hose going to the heating matrix.. can anyone help me please with any advice.. thanks.. kal..
  • dmccartydmccarty Member Posts: 1
    Two days ago I purchsed a Lexus ES300 for $10,500. It has 89,950 miles on it and looks new on the inside and out. Its a great car to ride in. Yesterday a friend told me about some serious issues with the engine in this and other Toyota cars. I found out that it is a gel and sludge problem. I am now worried that the engine could lock up at anytime since I have no clue how well the car was taken care of before I bought it. Any advice would be great.
  • anandlexusanandlexus Member Posts: 1
    The problem with sludge formation is because Lexus recommended 7500 mile oil change intervals.

    This is a mistake, as people were using the car on petroleum based oils for 7500 miles, instead of 3000 miles.

    Use a FULLY SYNTHETIC OIL - Havoline, Valvoline or Mobil 1 High Mileage and a Mobil 1 EP or Purolator Pure One oil filter every 3 months or 3000 miles and the engine will last for 250,000 miles easy.

    Also, don't forget to change the PCV valve, as a blocked PCV valve causes combustion gases to remain the crackcase causing sludge and gel.

    Good choice.

    I have a 1995 ES300 with 170K miles
  • jason1999jason1999 Member Posts: 4
    dmccarty - I purchased my 1999 ES300 over 4 years ago, used with 79000 miles or so. I did not know the car's history either, and as it turns out, I had the oil gelling/sludge problem. The car consumed large amounts of oil and definitely blew smoke out the tailpipe shortly after purchase. Your car will likely have similar symptoms if oil sludge is a problem. Lexus does have a good-will gesture and they will repair this at no cost...depending on the year of your vehicle. They took care of mine 4 years ago, gave me a rental car, and I have not had an issue ever since. I change my oil every 5000 miles, and do NOT use synthetic as others have suggested. As long as you are astute about changing your oil, you will not likely have a problem.
  • daveonlidaveonli Member Posts: 7
    Hello all, I just bought a used 1996 300es with 96,000 miles. The owner before me did all maintenance execpt the timing belt which i am doing now.I had two questions that i hope someone can help me with, The manuel says 91 octaine or higher (not sure what owner before used)Has anyone used regular gas for a period of time? Did lexus make this car with a 4 cylinder, i have the 6 cylinder but a mechanic says that most of the sludge problems were with the 4 cylinder's Thanks for any info
  • faldofaldo Member Posts: 3
    I have a 99 ES300 with 89,000 miles and it as been flawless. It has been well maintained, including the timing belt at 80,000 miles. Mid grade gas was used until a year ago when I switched to regular. I have not noticed a difference and it still performs beautifully.
  • loungerlounger Member Posts: 32
    Worrying doesn't help. If it is too late to return the car, then just take the car to your mechanic and have him take of both valve covers. It will be apparent if the engine is sludged or not. It probably isn't; it likely will have some varnish stains but thats about it.

    If the engine is good, then since you have the car apart, now would be a good time to replace the timing belt and tensioner, seals, serpentine belt, water pump, spark plugs, pcv valve, clean the throttle body, drop the transmission pan and clean the filter. It is going to cost about $2000. By the way, the next time you buy a used car, take it to the mechanic and spend the 200 to 300 bucks to have it properly inspected BEFORE you buy it.

    If you don't have a mechanic now, then now is the perfect time to fine one that specializes in Toyota/Lexus. Try this link for help finding a mechanic
  • bjewellbjewell Member Posts: 1
    New to this site but would like to get some advise. Thinking about buying a 1994 Lexus ES300 with 175,000 miles. The asking price is 2300. Is this a good deal or is the car to old with to many miles? Does any one know how the gas mileage is?
    Any other things I should be concern about. Thanks for your help.
  • tomk17tomk17 Member Posts: 135
    Looking at a ES300 with 103K miles on it. Good shape, woman owned. Price would be about $4000. 2 questions:

    1. Looks like you can run regula gas in this car correct? Premium suggested but would like to use regular.

    2. Timing belt - does the 95 model have one?
  • pattip76pattip76 Member Posts: 1
    I have a ES300 1996 with 271k miles--I use premium gas -get better gas milage. Just changed my timing belt. I paid $2000.00 2 years ago with 241K miles on it and I love it.
  • arid23arid23 Member Posts: 1
    Lexus did not make any other engine but the 6 cyl for the es 300 that year
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