Howdy, Stranger!

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

Toyota Sienna Sliding Door Problems



  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    I know all about the sludge issue with those 3.0l engines ... they extended coverage to 100k miles for owners who can prove they changed the oil at least once a year - are you within those limits?
  • The coverage is "8 years plus 120 days/unlimited mileage" and they are saying I am out of the warranty period by 100 days. I brought the car to a Toyota dealership multiple times to have the check engine light diagnosed and they said it was just a gas cap issue. Said it happens all the time and there was nothing to worry about. Now the engine smokes on start up and I need a new short block to the tune of $6,000! I've owned 5 Toyotas in my lifetime but I will NEVER buy a Toyota again! Mistakes happen but not backing them up, and blaming the customer for neglect (they won't even take a look at my oil change receipts!) is just plain wrong! This is not over yet, I will keep fighting as long as it takes. The dealer had the nerve to offer to take the car in on trade and when I asked how much would I get for the car since it had so much work that needed to be done he said don't worry, it only smokes mainly when you first crank it in the morning and the engine light can be turned off! Can you believe the nerve of some people?
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    You have a strong case but the question is do you have the energy to fight it? :sick:
  • Yes, I do have a STRONG case, and yes, it is tiring but I can and will handle it. I believe that Toyota thinks most people will just give up but I am not like most people. I know I took care of my Sienna and it is now the principal of the matter. We are a hard working, middle class family that purchased a Toyota because we believed in the products reliability and longevity. I was not that bothered by the sliding door sticking from time to time but when you are given the run around for so long about an engine light and then find out it is going to cost as much to fix your car as the car is worth, then there is a problem. No one should have to fight this hard for something like this. Your vehicle is most likely the second biggest purchase you will make in life. Toyota needs to do what is right.

    As far as the door is concerned, I spoke with the service manager yesterday and he said it is a cable that needs to be tightened. The cost will be about $75.00 for labor, no parts are needed. Hope this helps anyone on here that was worried about their door.
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    Ask them to clean the rubber seals as well.

    On my Miata they freeze up in extreme cold, but it's not as bad if they're clean.
  • dan156dan156 Posts: 3
    I am looking for help, support and advice here: Today, my toyota sienna rear passenger door fell off! Yes, that's right - it fell off. This is quite disturbing as one is driving with a 5 and 6 year old. It hung on by the front hinge and I took it Toyota with a bungy chord attached to it.
    We have an extended warranty - that is up to 77,000 miles. We have 88, 000 miles, so they did not honor it. Finally, they agreed to cover it, but we will have to cover the cost of labor: $900.00.
    Tell me, is this right?
    Is there anything significant to do about it?
    Is it worth the effort? Does this company have a little integrity?
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    IMHO the key is the cause - was it faulty from production?

    Or did kids hang on it and use it as a skate board ramp? :D
  • dan156dan156 Posts: 3
    Our cable broke- and so did the hinge- The entire door fell off!

    Cost of labor: $900.00.

    Sounds steep - parts are on Toyota- saying its $1200.00

    It looks like the cost of the motor, hinge, cable are pretty cheap on-line.

    Does any of this sound reasonable?
  • skijennskijenn Posts: 3
    I have an 04 Sienna, and have recently discovered that my driver's side sliding door lock has pulled through the skin of the door. The lock itself is held in place by 3 bolts, and they have pulled right through the sheet metal of the door. I took the vehicle to my dealer, and they are telling me that it is not covered, and I need to replace the entire door for $3500. Their alternative is to claim it through my insurance company. The vehicle has not been in an accident, so I'm not really sure how this has happened. I have the full 7 yr/100K mile warranty, and am at 65K. Has anyone ever heard of this happening, and whether it is ever covered by Toyota?
  • brian82brian82 Posts: 2
    If you were to visit my local dealer, they would swear that it's part of "vehicle trim" and therefore not covered by extended warranty.

    My local dealer is part of the reason my Toyota is on the market...
  • Thats too bad. Do you know if someone was pulling real hard on the handle when it was froze shut? I always pull on the metal frame of the door just because I was afraid this could happen. I dont think the door necessarily needs to be replaced. I am sure a good body shop could replace the damaged sheet metal in this area. I would thnk this should be alot less than $3,500. My powered passenger door hasnt worked in over 2 years. They want $1000 to replace the latch which broke under warranty. Toyota has become so big so fast they lost the ability to design in the quality they once had and then fail to recognize this and dont stand behind it.
  • My drivers side sliding door cable broke at under 45,000 miles. This side gets used a lot less than the passenger side. The local dealer wanted $1,800 to fix it. Toyota balked on helping when a I inferred that this was a "safety" issue. Once again, Toyota has a level of quality problems that if they owned up to them it would increase their financial issues so they are holding a tight line on the MULTITUDE OF DOOR PROBLEMS ON THE SIENNAs. The weld also broke on our drivers door once. It has now broken again and this time smashed the sheet metal straight through. Of course there was the rear hatch door cylinders replacement issue too. Three of out five doors on our Sienna have had serious problems, and cost us a lot of time. While other car companies have their issues, this is likely my last experience with Toyota, especially considering they have shown that they're interested in making service and parts profits through poor quality. I bought our Toyota because of "perceived" reliability!
  • Hello, my name is Chris Mitchell,

    We own a Toyota Sienna XLE 2004. Back in November 2008, the driver sliding door cable snapped, making the door jam and unusable in "power" mode. Cable dangling out of its socket, we drove to our dealership to have it serviced. The repair came to over $1800!!!

    After researching this issue on the internet, I'm finding that MANY people are experiencing the same problem!! I'm thinking that it doesn't necessarily have to do with mileage but perhaps more with age of vehicle ie: 4-5ish years old.

    The PROBLEM:

    The cable which drives the sliding door is completely exposed to elements. (you'll find it within the groove located under the rear side windows) This cable is made of some kind of metal (steel? who knows.) then coated with a black plastic/acrylic/rubber casing (such as an electrical wire). With time, the casing begins to dry and be brittle, causing it to crack and fall off the wire, leaving the wires completely vulnerable to getting wet, rust, freeze, etc, also rubbing extensively unprotected against the gears. Within a few months or even weeks, the metal cable wires snap thus getting caught in the mechanism. One thing leads to another and the whole cable snaps, making the door jam altogether.

    The FIX:

    Per my own experience at the dealership, and subsequently reading and researching many blog sites, the ONLY way to fix this issue is as follows: remove the entire door, remove and CHANGE the entire mechanism. Extremely costly, there's just no way around this. Asked if there was a way to simply change the cable, I was informed that the cable is part of the motor and that it is not a part that can be purchased OR repaired separately.

    Any “RECALL” in sight? We can only hope!! But here’s where we need your help.

    After speaking with Toyota’s Customer Service Relation (Headquarters), she explained that “recalls” happen when “enough” people call in and bring up issues (complaints) with their vehicles. Local Service Managers can also help petition to HQ on your behalf if they see a problem that may be a repetitive pattern. Service managers can relay this information to a factory representative and such.

    What can you do?

    First off, call this number: 1(800) 331-4331 (Customer Service Relations… they were VERY pleasant and helpful!) and tell them about your experience with the sliding door defect. They will give you a case number and send your issue higher up. Who know how many complaints they need before they consider recalls, but at least we’ll have done our best. WHEN YOU CALL: It can be very helpful to mention other case numbers relating to this issue so far:

    #0903125843 (March 2009), #200806060609 (June 2008)... I will add more as time goes and people contact me with theirs.

    Second: If you haven’t already fixed your door, DO call your Service Manager in your area to set up an appointment to have the door fixed, AND open the lines for discussion for him to petition on your behalf about this problem which SO many people are having issues with.

    Third: If you’ve already had the door fixed, DO NOT throw away your receipts!!! Cust. Serv. Rel. told me that if down the line Toyota comes out with a recall, YOU WILL BE RETROACTIVELY ENTITLED TO A FULL REFUND OF YOUR REPAIRS WITH PROOF OF PAYMENT!!! (aparently that goes for any problems which arise with Toyota vehicles! Good to know!) If by chance you’ve misplaced/lost/thrown out your receipt, I suggest you call your dealership ASAP and ask them to reprint one for you… they should be able to as long as you’re still in the system.


    You are NOT alone! If Toyota can see fit to recall a “clip” which is used to hold carpets, they SHOULD deal with this bigger issue too.

    Our voice must be heard, force in numbers people!!!

    Thank you so much for your help and attention!

    Chris Mitchell (
  • I am also having problems with my drivers side sliding door. First it wouldn't close properly and now it won't open. Toyota dealer wanted $460 just to take the panel off to see the problem. I have a call in to the Toyota corporate office to see if they can offer an help or suggestions. Would appreciate any new info anyone has. I will let you know what happens. Overall I am not satisfied with my Sienna - with 65,000 miles, too many things are falling apart, especially the trim.
  • Hi,

    I am not sure if this is the same problem. The right sliding door works fine on my 2004 Sienna XLE Limited when I pull on the handle but if I use the remote or any of the buttons to open or close that door, it tries to go but seems like a latch isn't releasing. If I pull on the handle first to release it, I can then reverse direction with any of the buttons or the remote. Any ideas how I get the latch to release WITHOUT pulling the handle first?

    Thanks in advance.
  • There is a small plastic bushing on the latch that is broken. It pulls on a cable the releases the rear latch. mine is broken. the only way to release the door is to remove the door latch cover (2 screws on the side of the door) and then release the latch manually with a screwdriver by pushing the end of the cable forward.
    they want $800 to replace this latch all for the sake of a little plastic bushing.
    If you keep cycling the door and the latch dosnt release you will soon break the cable and motor assembly. thats a $2400 bill. Mine mtor/cable assy broke and toyota replaced it but they did not fix the root problem which was the broken bushing in the latch. Its a very poor design.
  • Thank you but I didnt think that was it as mine works fine if I pull on the handle. According to your discription, pulling on the handle shouldn't release the latch right?

    Where is the "rear latch" and the latch cover you are referring to? If it is what you suggested, how is that repaired?
  • occasitaoccasita Posts: 5
    To Chris our cable snapped in our 2004 Sienna Van. The dealer wants over $1000 to fix it! I can't remember the exact number as my head started spinning at the $1000 mark. We are supposed to move and this is going to make it impossible to have the downpayment. I am on hold right now (your call will be answered in "over 10 minutes" - gee, thanks).

    Is there any more news? I really can't afford this. We are moving to a smaller home so that we don't have to pay as much rent, now this? Sheehs.

    Thanks! I will be here looking for answers. :mad:
  • Occasita,

    I know it's a real bugger of a problem... and you won't find a better price to fix it either. *frown* I am VERY irritated with this issue, even though I still love our Sienna. This is just ONE part of it which I think is doomed to break and needs to get some attention by the maker.

    Since my letter, we have paid for the repairs.... we wanted it fixed ASAP.

    The most important thing I can say to you is, PLEASE call the 1 800 number I mentioned on my first post and PLEASE open a case with them. Also, if you tell them our case numbers (also posted in my letter) they can keep building a bigger case... it's good to link them.

    If they decide after many complaints to make it a recall, they will refund... "IF" *sigh* but I guess we'll at least be able to say we tried.

    Thanks and good luck to you!

    Chris Mitchell
  • The cover I am referring to is the plastic molding that is around the interior door handle. Its held on by 2 screws that are located on the edge of the door as well as a couple hidden hooks on the molding itself. This cover can be popped off after removing the screws. The rear latch is hidden in the back off the door. It is released via a cable that is pulled on when the door handle is used to open the door. If a little plastic bushing inside the latch is broken off, the rear latch wont be released and when the door tries to cycle open it wont open because the latch is holding it shut. I think this is why the cable breaks.
  • pamulapamula Posts: 5
    This same problem is happening to me-- if I pull the handle it opens fine-- did you figure out what it was?
  • No. After several weeks of not working it is suddenly working fine. I imagine it will happen again but hope it doesn't. If it does, I will plan on taking it to a service manager whom I have a good relationship with who said he will look at it no charge. I will let you know if I find anything out. Please do the same and good luck.
  • pamulapamula Posts: 5
    Oh that is good-- gives me hope. Did you turn off the electronic doors and let it rest for a while? And just use it on manual? Its so weird when I use the buttons or remote it starts but stops because it can't delatch.. but doing it from pulling up on the handle the motor seems to work fine-- so frustrating!
  • No, I didn't do anything different that I know of.

    I know the frustration. Once you delatch it with the handle you can push the buttons or the remote and it will reverse direction, it just wont delatch when latched. There obviously is a different system that delatches vs. tells the door to move.

    I will let you know if I figure anything else out. Please do the same.

    Good luck!
  • Today (4/21/09) the driver's side power sliding door on my wife's 2005 Toyota Sienna van the open position! We had to drive it to the local dealer with the door open and kid's in the car...can you say SAFETY HAZARD! The dealer wants $2,000 to fix it! The dealer says that the motor and cables are broken and need to be replaced. Naturally, the vehicle is just out of the 36,000 mile warranty (it has 41,000 miles on it) and the dealer says "sorry." This is not good enough for me. I have seen the hundreds of posts on this exact problem and will fight this one with the dealer, Toyota headquarters in CA, etc.. Thoughts?
  • ateixeiraateixeira Posts: 72,587
    You couldn't drop them off somewhere, pick them up in a loaner car, or have them take a taxi?
  • Sounds like the same issue many people have had. Please help us all build a case towards this problem. Read message #229 in this string to follow the appropriate actions. The more people who report this problem at the 1800 number I mentioned, the better our chances of having a real legitimate case to have it rectified.

    I totally understand your frustration and concerned. Please mention our case numbers when you call Toyota.

    Good luck!
  • occasitaoccasita Posts: 5
    I thought the 2005's were immune from the problem. The dealership would not fix our 2004 with their "Assistance Program" because we had not been to a Toyota Dealership for maintenance in the last 3 years. Nevermind that we had a Corolla before this van and were considering another Toyota this year (Yaris, Matrix, Prius or Camry). The Mazdas are looking better and better right now.

    We ended up duct taping the door after the dealership managed to close it. I duct taped the inside handle and the outside one. When there is FINALLY recall on these door problems we will take it in and let them fix it. I have also filed a case at the NHTSA.

    Good luck!
  • Thanks...I just opened up a case with the Toyota customer relations office in CA and also filed one with the NHTSA. The gentlemen at Toyota said they had many complaints/cases of this sliding door and "were looking into it" but that no recall had been determined yet.
  • I have filed cases with the NHTSA and Toyota and will hope for the best. They are aware of the problem but have not issued a recall...yet.
Sign In or Register to comment.