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Toyota Sienna Sliding Door Problems



  • visco2visco2 Posts: 5
    I recieved a notice from Toyota that I might be eligible for reimbursement for repairs done to the sliding doors on our 2005 Sienna XLE AWD and have not yet filed a claim with Toyota on the sliding doors, but these posts are not encouraging. In Dec 2009, I paid $1,365 to have the motor and clutch assembly replaced (as listed on my receipt). In Sep 2011, I paid $565 for repair of the other door which has listed slide motor assembly and solenoid. I was among the original posters of bubbling and peeling paint on the rims of my Sienna which was about 18 months old at the time, and Toyota did nothing about it, even though they were under warranty. For five-hundred dollars, a rim-repair shop sand blasted and painted the rims. This was three years ago and I have had no issues despite fewer washings and the same salted roads which they claimed caused the paint to bubble. To Toyota's credit, they did replace the lift gate struts twice when they went bad at no cost, though it was while I had the extended warranty and I did have some issue with the dealership not wanting to replace the second set due to them being warranty items and not new to the vehicle.
  • jalbajalba Posts: 1
    Which I had seen your post and others before now. Husband ripped off door handle on passenger side manual open sliding door this weekend. 2005 model. We live in the ice cold city of Nashville, TN. Ha!
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    How hard did he pull? ;)
  • I must be the lucky one of the bunch. My Toyota dealer fixes all these warranty issues on my '05 Sienna in a timely and free manner. I have not spent a nickle on any issues regarding warranty, even under the extended warranty issues.
  • fibber2fibber2 Mid Hudson Valley, NYPosts: 3,780
    Some dealers value your loyalty, some simply don't care. With Toyota sales continuing to grow, too many dealerships have the attitude that they'll add new customers to replace those that get disgusted and never return.
  • jhogejhoge Posts: 3
    edited February 2013
    I started a blog while I am Waiting for Toyota's response on my situation:here
  • pdubupdubu Posts: 1
    I used Rich Jung to rebuild my cables and assembly. Excellent service and top notch work! Give them a call to diagnose your problem. He will help walk you through the possible issues. Price was $350 with shipping, and they have a Warranty that they stand behind (because I had to use it when breaking something when trying to reinstall my fixed assembly).

    Rich Jung (
    BSJ Enterprises Inc.
    dba Benson's Auto
    7711 South Alameda Street
    Los Angeles, CA 90001
    (323) 583-8941 tel
  • I too have been smitten. My '04 Sienna is 3 months out of the extended period. My cable shows wear that predates the warranty period and I am prepared to get legal counsel to defend my case. Has anyone gone above the local distributor to get consideration?
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    To be fair the vehicle is 10 years old. A Ford would have rusted to pieces by now.
  • dudleyrdudleyr Posts: 3,469
    Yes, I did have a problem with my power door as well. Fixed it myself with a new actuator (as mentioned on this forum). No problems since. While I am not happy I had the problem, it is the only non maintenance issue I have had with the vehicle in 7.5 years and 135,000 miles. Vehicle is still running strong.
  • I hear you, however this car has 50,000 miles on it. It has been well maintained and if you look at the cable, you will see this has been defective for some time; just not enough to break until this 3 month out of a 9 year warranty.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Well, look at it from a different point of view.

    Let's say you paid $1000 or so for a 10 year warranty, and someone else who bought their car they same day paid $800 for a 9 year warranty.

    Then their car breaks at 9.2 years.

    If a manufacturer covers them, you got screwed. Otherwise, why did you pay more than they did?

    As a gesture of Good Will I think it would be appropriate for them to perhaps share the cost with you, given you're a customer with the longest warranty available. I think it's fair for you to ask, also.

    But they can't just fix every car for free indefinitely.

    I have a 7/100 warranty on one of my cars (not the Sienna), and the value of that warranty is zero if they fix every one's cars after the standard warranty is up.

    What did I pay for, exactly?
  • I finally bit the bullet and sent in my sliding door units (2005 Sienna XLE, 135k miles) to Benson's Auto as per recommendations on this forum. Rich was a great help and both doors are now good to go with high quality cables, total cost was about $900 as a couple other parts were broken. Removal/installation were pretty straightforward with his instructions, and he sourced the extra parts at minimum price which was much appreciated. I highly recommend anyone else out of warranty/recall get it done... you forget how great the power doors are with kids (and the wife). :shades:
  • You are talking like a true service manager. I'll update you after the final decision has been made.
    Meanwhile, you might want to respond to the other 750+ posts who have the same issue...give you time to think about what you're saying. Nine years later...
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    edited April 2013
    I avoid dealerships as much as possible, even do my own routine maintenance.

    The 7/100 warranty is on my wife's car, and yes I think it's unfair when every one gets a benefit that we had to pay for.

    750 posts is nothing, have you seen the Dodge/Chrysler transmission thread? 2000+
  • Haha, you are good. Comparing a Chrysler to Toyota. Chrysler is notorious for their poor quality, while Toyota...
    Nine year warranty, can you see BMW offering such a ridiculous "defect". Come on man, fess up that Toyota knows this is a very real problem.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    BMW isn't exactly known for stellar reliability. 10 years no problems would be very unlikely.
  • chemshermchemsherm Posts: 1
    I don't know if anyone has suggested any help for your frozen doors. I have a 2001 Sienna. Here in DE we have weather that usually involves rain in the daytime and then freezing temps at night. This causes water between the door seal and the body to freeze the door closed. A real simple fix I've used is to lubricate the door seal with spray silicone. Spray it on and wipe off the excess. I hope this helps you.
  • theduke5theduke5 Posts: 1
    Reading through some of these discussion threads, I am amazed at how some dealerships get away with murder. We had a 2004 Sienna XLE automatic door fail in the open position (it wouldn't close) at a grocery store. I looked at the cable and saw the cable sheathing had split open. As the door was closing it binded up at this point in the pulley system and reversed open. I thought I could get it through the initial pulley and pull ed but it really jammed up. I had to cut the rear tensioner side of the cable to close the door.

    We brought the van to the dealer in Bellevue, NE to have the cable replaced. I left for work and my wife returned home. She got a call saying that the motor and possibly locking motor had to be replaced for $1800 with $1000 up front. She paid it up front and then called me. I called the dealer and cancelled the order. i then went over there. Clearly, the motor and locking motors still ran, but the cable sheathing was aged and cracked as a result of all the turns through the pulleys it had to make.

    Luckily, there was another person at the dealership who said he could replace just the cable. After rescheduling the repair, I pointed out the the other side cable was in the same condition as the broken cable was just before failure.

    They called their district service manager in Kansas City who gave approval to replace that cable too.

    Now both door open and close like a champ (even without the gritty sound it used to have).

    I really believe the problem lies in the plastic sheathing of cable aging and cracking.
  • ckirkckirk Posts: 18
    I had the cable break on 2004 Sienna XLE door and was asked $1800 by the dealer to replace the whole lot, no "cable-only" solutions. If you don't mind, how much were you charged to have the cable replaced? Was it repaired under a Toyota notice?
    Thanks, Kirk in TX
  • michwood59michwood59 Posts: 1
    I have the same problem on my 2007 sienna. I found a fix for it although I haven't actually repaired my door yet though. Please see post number #321 for the fix. Its actually a defective motor latch release mechanism and can be purchased for about $ 100.00
  • duster4duster4 Posts: 2
    Still waiting for a final verdict from Toyota, but my 2011 Sienna cargo door would was not operating properly. My wife brought the car in for regular maintenance 3 weeks ago, asked the dealership to check it out. They reported it to be OK. Now, it stopped working. Would not close completely. The car is outside the 36,000 mile warrantee, but still less than 3 years old. The dealer now says it's a $2,500 repair. Unbelievable! Also, the dealer charged $90 to assess the situation!
  • duster4duster4 Posts: 2
    I posted the other day about the sliding door not working on my 2011 Toyota Sienna. Unfortunately, it is out of warantee because I'm past the mileage. I couldn't get the door to even close. The dealer eventually did get the door closed. Wanted to charge $90 for 'diagnostics', but eventually backed away from that. Their 'diagnostic analysis' told me 'it works intermittently. Well why wouldn't I want to pay $90 for that? They told me the fix was $2,500. Toyota said that they might be willing to pay half. What a sham. They can't build a car with a door that works for even 3 years. They inflate the repair costs, and then think I'll feel good about paying half.
    Also, just try asking for a supervisor at Toyota. 'I will have one get back to you in less then 1 business day' is their normal response. They didn't even get that right! I didn't get a call back.
    I will never buy a Toyota again!!!
  • schdealschdeal Posts: 2
    This is my first Toyota car and buying experience is very good, I like the driving more than Honda Odyssey.
    But the night mare come after I have the car, this is the worst NEW car I have ever buy.

    The moon roof rack broken after 6 months, even though it's replaced by the warranty.

    The sliding door began to have problem after few months, while opening the door, it produce a big bang sound,a really scary noise, it's like some one is hitting your car with a big hammer. but it doesn't happen all the time, so the dealer can't find it out easily. Finally I have to leave the car at service for a whole day, they finally heard it and replaced something as they claimed, it's better for few months, the sound come back again.

    The clip for the seat belt on driver side broken after 2.5 years, the stupid car was keeping beep while driving because I can't faster the seat belt.

    The steering wheel is making turn sound when you turn, while it's very smooth and quite before.

    The paint is chipping, my Honda Accord's paint maintained very well after 10 years, but the paint of this car begin to chip after one year.
  • cbrunocmecbrunocme Posts: 1
    I have an issue with both of my sliding doors

    Driver's manual slider - intermittently will not open form the inside and have to pull very hard on the outside handle and slam the door shut

    Passenger side power slider - the button's all stopped working a few weeks ago and intermittently the door will not open form the inside and have to pull very hard on the outside handle

    I was going to replace the cheap little motor in the door lock actuator on both sides but I had not read of anyone having trouble opening from the inside so I was wondering if there were other parts I should be looking at or if it still sounds like the actuator.
  • kvnimrlskvnimrls Posts: 2
    Horrible to see that so many Sienna's are having the same issue and Toyota doesn't feel it's and problem. MY '04 Sienna passenger slider is having issues. The door opens when it wants, the cable snapped, the lock is malfunctioning.
    Toyota wont fix it. Because I am the second owner, I am not eligible for the extended warranty. They know the issue exists and they could care less....
    the slider once opened while my wife was turning down our block! What do they need? A Class action law suit to get them on the ball!!!
  • The most common issue on these 2004 to 2010 Sienna power sliding door failures is the protective sheathing on the cables, and the hinges. The sheathing gets old and brittle and starts to crack and peel off. The sheathing then starts to bind up in the pulleys of the clutch, in the cable guides, or under the spool cap. This creates addition resistance when makes the motor complain, prompting most be people to think the motor is going bad. We have never had to replace a motor due to wear and tear. Its always the cable. As the sheathing peels away from the cable, it also exposes the cables to elements, Allowing the cable to rust and become brittle. Once it starts rusting it will break in short order. I do not recommend using the cable without the sheathing tho. The exposed metal cable can and will break the plastic pulleys of the clutch assembly. With no plastic coating on them to protect the thing plastic pulleys of the clutch from the steel cables, we have seen many many clutches broken beyond repair. Since we cannot fix the clutch, nor do we have an aftermarket replacement, the only other option then is to purchase the item from the dealership, and they go for over $1200 list price. So if you intend to keep the power sliding door feature in your car, I highly recommend you send them out for rebuilding before the pulleys in the clutch break.

    The second most common problem are the hinges. The first generation hinges are very thin and a prone to bending out of spec. This can make opening and closing the door difficult, and also put additional stress on the motor and cables. If the issue is bad enough it can make the cable snap, as the cables are not running in their intended pathway. This issue as been dealt with by Toyota by way of making a stronger hinge, but as most people know it is not covered under warranty. Fortunately the price of the new updated hinges isn't too expensive, under $100. I'd recommend ordering this unit from your local dealer if you need a new hinge.

    We have replacement parts for just about everything except for the clutch at this time. We also do cable replacements with brand new cables with a 90 day no hassle warranty. Contact us at Thank you!
  • gnoknutingnoknutin Posts: 1
    Which cables do you cut? I've been looking all over youtube and the internet to figure out what cables to cut and can't find anything. I don't mind having a manual door -- I just don't want to cut something I shouldn't cut.
  • Hey guyz, Bensons Auto has just posted video instructions on how to remove the Sienna sliding door motors. It really does look pretty easy.
  • ADD US TO THE LONG LIST OF GRATEFUL PEOPLE! We used the PDF you mentioned and read post #321 on this log, both extremely helpful! Ordered the part ($77.75 + $17 shipping) from our Toyota dealership, had it in 2 days and tackled the project ourselves (no mechanical know-how). 2 hours, 5 minutes later, works perfectly!!!
    It's worth mentioning that although the step-by-step PDF directions & pictures are a lifesaver , it doesn't tell you all repairs have to be made while you're INSIDE the van. We had to do this at first light because the summers in AZ are so brutal after 9am!
    Also, just for background, we took our minivan to the dealership first who quoted us $875 to fix the Door Lock Motor Release Assembly. Then went and talked to a mechanic shop down the street that a friend works at, at they quoted us $1275 to fix it (Toyota won't sell them the actual part you have to buy the WHOLE DOOR KIT otherwise they won't warranty it).
    This was by far the most helpful site and best leads on this door failure!

    Thanks again, AZ parents
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