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Toyota Avalon 2008-2010



  • All Avalon engines after 2005 have "life of vehicle" timing chains. Changing engine oil properly will help to insure maximum life.

    Avalon V-6 is "interference" engine. Timing chain failure would result in severe engine damage, so life expectancy must be pretty good.
  • Thank you for your reply and answering my question! As you're also an Avalon owner, how often do you change your car's engine oil? I have just over 10,000 miles on my car and I'm following Toyota's maintenance schedule of changing the oil every 5,000 miles. I get the car serviced at my local Toyota dealership and bring my own oil, synthetic Mobil 1 5W-30. Always used this oil in all of my cars (Toyotas, of course)! However, prior to owning my Avalon, I always changed the oil every 3,000 miles. This is the first Toyota I own with the maintenance required light that comes on every 4,500-5,000 miles to remind the owner that an oil change is needed. Ideally, I would like to change the oil every 3,000, but the manufacturer suggests every 5,000. Thank you again for your prompt reply and happy holidays!
  • robsisrobsis Posts: 162
    edited December 2010

    With the current oil and engine technology there is absolutely no reason to change your oil every 3K. The new 4.0L 6 cylinder on the Toyota FJC uses 0w20 synthetic and calls for a 10k oil change. I've seen oil analysis done at that mileage (we own one) with the oil spec'ing out quite robustly.I've seen rumors that Toyota was to go with the 0w20 on the 2011 Avy but it did not happen.

    5K is more than fine for our Avys, expecially with the use of that 5w30 synthetic. I, too, use the M1 5w30 in our Avy and have seen tests done on it, too. The oil is actually still strong even at 5k. IMHO, don't waste your money on the 3K oil change when 5K is more than adequate and truly protects your engine beautifully.
  • finfin atlantaPosts: 594
    On oil changes: Local Toyota dealer does all mine and says 5k is fine for the Avalon driven normally. You could probably go even longer, as these posts suggest, and do no real harm. Some newer makes, such as Nissan, can go 7.5k and the oil is fine when changed. Not like ages ago...2k max.... wow, did we ever do that?..... yep..
  • I change the oil/filter in my vehicle about every 4000 miles. We don't do a lot of miles so that works out to about every (3) months. I use 5W30 Quaker State, and I am a firm believer that frequent oil changes are the cheapest preventative maint. you can do for your vehicle.

    Based on everything I have read about synthetics, you probably could go to 10000 miles, but my personal preference would probably be 8000 miles max. I have just never made the change from conventional oil.

    As a side note, my father-in-law was a garage owner, and he started me on Quaker State in the first new vehicle I ever owned. I have never had a oil related engine problem in 50+ years.
  • jmmckjmmck Posts: 9
    TSS apparently stands for Toyota Sport Series but cannot find out a lot about it. Has ground effects, spoiler, 18" wheels and hi performance tires. It is a package Gulf States adds. Kinda overkill for a big sedan I know, but it looks good in black and was a really good deal.
  • Bought my Avalon Touring 2008 in early december of 2010.
    Certified and with full maintanance book. Done by Toyota service stations.
    The sticker in my window when I bought the car read " that current milage plus 5000" for the next oil change.
    Reading through the service book this car seems to be a problem free maintanance car. Majority is on the oil and air filter changes, plus the sparks when that occur... : )

    Figured out the flickering of head lights and panel lights.
    There's a resistor sensor behind the dash where you can illuminate the dash light, this resistor is also linked to the head lights.
    When the resistor gets to warm it will start flicker as it tries to get colder.
    This is something I will take up with technicians next week. Because they don't know why lights are "flickering" ..... at least they have something to start working with.
    Maybe we all can make this as a "non-cost-recall"

  • After driving my 2008 Avalon Touring in the snow, I'm convinced it is the worst foul weather car I've ever driven. 35 degrees with heavy snow squalls and roads snow covered-my Avalon is a sled. It spins. It slides. This car is flat out dangerous on slippery roads. I couldn't make my driveway-100 yard slight uphill grade with 4" of wet snow. My cousin's Jetta TDI walked right in. I passed on a Hyundai Genisis because I wanted FWD for the snow, Yeah right! Just had to vent. What are they thinking with a design like this?
  • kbetts1kbetts1 Posts: 36
    We've owned our '08 Touring for several winters and never had any of those problems with snow driving. In fact, my wife attends her yoga class where the steep driveway stranded several ladies at the bottom of it after the last ice storm and she went right up it.

    Most of the time, snow behavior is about the tires, not the car. Check the tire wear and the tire inflation. Some cars like the Avalon with brake force assist can provide too much braking. Also check the condition of the brakes because they are how the traction control manages slippery conditions.

    Hope you figure out your problem because we have the same car and have zero issues in snow.
  • robsisrobsis Posts: 162
    I agree with problems here with the Avy in the snow; however, we have excellent winter tires. Some 'all-seasons' are just absolutely are not decent in snow at all...I'd check those tires and find some with traction.
  • finfin atlantaPosts: 594
    We seldom see any snow here in GA but this year has been quite an exception as you may have seen on the news. Check your tire inflation and tread depth and post the results.... also what brand of tires do you have? My snow experience with the '07 Avy is limited, nothing like many who post here, but driving seems no worse than our other family cars, Nissan and Honda, all FWD. The real problem here in GA is ice as snow melts and then re-freezes... nothing works, could that have happened? As a car Avys do fine in the slush, as well as any other FWD car, from my experience.....
  • The problem isn't the tires. It is the TRAC system! If the system detects wheel spin in a front tire, it removes power from the spinning wheel. If both wheels are spinning, the Avalon will stop moving-period! Sometimes wheel spin is the only way to keep moving on a really slick service. I pulled a sensor and disabled the TRAC and VSC systems and the Michelin all-seasons pulled fine. I've used this driveway for about 15 years. First with a 1995 Lincoln Continental FWD with traction control and a 2002 Caddy STS FWD with traction control. Finally bought the 08 Touring in June of 09, and took the car to south Texas for the winter. All three cars have/had Michelin all-season tires. The American TRAC systems would buzz and move power from wheel to wheel, but you could keep moving. The Avalon system is way too sensitive. I need to find a way to install a kill switch.
  • jeffm5jeffm5 Posts: 123
    stoneybroke, I have a 2005 Avy LTD, which was the 1st year of the current generation. I agree with you on your last post. I too wish there was a TRAC system off switch. Sometimes you need to keep those wheels spinning to maintain momentum going up a slick hill or starting on a slick incline to get into traffic.
  • Hi,
    This is a pain, but you can turn off your traction control on the Avalon. I use it in situations when the power to both wheels is killed.

    Transition to the service mode (TRAC and VSC OFF mode).

    The TRAC and VSC systems can be turned off by following the procedures below:

    When using the parking brake and brake pedal:
    1) Check that the IG is off and the shift lever position is at P.
    2) Start the engine after turning the IG to the ON position.
    3) Operate the following steps 4 to 8 within 30 seconds after engine start.
    4) Turn the parking brake switch on.
    5) Depress and release the brake pedal twice.
    6) Turn the parking brake switch on and off twice while depressing the brake pedal.
    7) Depress and release the brake pedal twice while the parking brake switch is on.
    Steps 6 and 7 should be performed within 15 seconds each.
    8) Check that the VSC warning light and slip indicator are turned on. If they are not turned on, start over from step 1.
    9) The brake control system will return to the normal mode by turning the IG to the ON position from off.
  • jeffm5jeffm5 Posts: 123
    Thanks advocate5. Wow, that is involved. Too bad there is not a simple ON/OFF switch. This is one of the few flaws in an otherwise outstanding car,
  • tjc78tjc78 South JerseyPosts: 7,648
    I passed on a Hyundai Genisis because I wanted FWD for the snow,

    My 06 Avalon was great in the snow. I had the Bridgestone EL400 tires from the factory (they wore fast, but were decent performers). If you are having trouble with the Avalon in the snow be thrilled you didn't buy the Genesis. The stock Dunlop tires on my 09 Genesis render the car useless in the bad weather. Actually, my Genny is still in the driveway covered in snow. Thank goodness my GFs Elantra is great in bad weather.

    2017 Buick Enclave / 2017 Hyundai Elantra

  • The procedure that advocate5 has given us works. However, it does have some obvious drawbacks. There has got to be a way to wire in a kill switch for the Trac system. Tic78's Genesis is sitting in the driveway, so is my useless Avalon. My wife absolutely refuses to drive the Avalon in the snow, or even hint of snow. We are driving a 06 Highlander AWD and my old 02 Sierra 4wd pickup.
  • The 2008 Avalon Limited comes with a TRAC switch so it shouldn't be too hard to figure out.
  • nceencee Posts: 419
    when I'm turning and under acceleration. I went to the dealer and he said it was normal, and that what I was hearing was the traction control??? Sounds like the freaken front end is about to come off!

    This happened when I purchased the car, at about 3600 miles and they replaced a CV shaft or something like that.

    I was tempted to take a 2011 out when he said that, just to see, but I felt I'd get nowhere if it didn't do it i.e., older car, they've made changes since 2008 blah, blah, blah

    So has anyone else had this happen and what was the out come?

  • Ditto for my 2008 Avy. Seems to only occur before the vehicle warms up and it has to be REALLY cold before I hear it. Toyota said "normal" to me too. It isn't, but not worth a fight. No other tranny or drive problems.
  • twowallstwowalls Posts: 1
    We are having the same problems with our Avalon high beams shattering. Are you still having problems with Toyota taking care of the cost to fix this problems? Would like to hear back from you. Thanks!
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    If you mean the actual bulb itself then simply disable the DRLs.
  • My 2008 Avalon Ltd has high mileage (140K+) The dealer quoted $ 2,600 to replace the headlight assemblies in response to the shattered HB / DRL bulbs. No other offers made. I ordered two of the Toshiba HIR 9011 bulbs off of the net for around $ 34 each. One 15 amp fuse apparently blew (There is one fuse for the L highbeam / drl bulb and one fuse for the R highbeam / drl bulb). I have replaced the bad fuse and installed both new bulbs. And all is okay for now.
  • wwestwwest Posts: 10,706
    The problem is that halogen incandescent bulbs do not like being operating at sub-standard, DRL voltages (less than 6 volts). Over time they will deposit enough "soot" on the interior of the glass encalsulation to trap light and heat, and the bulb begins to MELT.
  • After a bit of pushing and gent threatening, Toyota agreed to replace both Avy headlight assemblies at their cost.
  • diekemadiekema Posts: 11
    just had mine replaced AGAIN (third time) on my 08 Touring. Dealer said only covered by warranty--mine is out. replaced bulbs--around $45 each with a 1 yr.
  • mlinggamlingga Posts: 60
    An update on my headlight travails that I posted about around a year ago. After having both HID bulbs burn out on my '08 Limited, I finally had them replaced, using two no-name bulbs bought off the internet. About a month ago, lo and behold, one of them just dies. I procrastinate for a while, getting by with the one HID plus frequent use of the high beams. So, imagine my delight when BOTH high beams die, on the same day. So now I have one HID, doubtlessly about to die, and the fog lamps, as my only lighting.

    I did not find that the entire headlight assembly was burned out. Had my body shop buddy replace all four bulbs, this time sticking with Phillips HIDs and Toshiba HIR 9011 high beams. I hope, but a sure wouldn't count, on these lasting longer. Otherwise this will be a yearly event.

    These headlight assemblies are the biggest pieces of junk I've ever dealt with. My '07 Suburban with >100K miles is still running on the original set of generic halogens. And I can change them myself in 20 minutes. And they're like $20/bulb. And they are pretty bright. And I paid extra for the HIDs. Dummy.
  • I see alot of you are having problems with the high beams shattering. We had the same issue recently. The dealer wants $ 2400.00 to replace the casings. We bought the extended warranty which hardly covers anything. Have any of you had any luck getting Toyota to replace these as they are obviously a manufacturer defect?
    Thx! Sandy
  • Just wondering what you found out from Toyota of America about the shattered headlights? We just had ours go out and they want $2400.00 to get new assemblies for the lights.
    Thx Sandy
  • advocate5advocate5 Posts: 8
    I had the same problem with my 08 headlight assemblies several years ago. The dealer wanted $2400 but was willing to pay 2/3 of that.
    The issue had to do with the HID Headlight Control Unit also called ballast.
    This was definitely a defect in the assembly unit because it was redesigned for the 09's.
    I initially paid the $800 to get new units and then went on a campaign to get fully refunded by Toyota. After several letters and promises to escalate another Toyota defect to the papers and TV, they agreed to reimburse me fully.
    The new units have had absolutely no problems. Vehicle has ~60K right now.
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