Lexus RX 400h: Problems & Solutions
Talk about RX 400h problems and share solutions here.
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However, on about 3 or 4 occasions, I have not been able to start my car immediately because the ignition switch does not "turn on" (get a Ready signal). I have tried all possible lateral moves of the key plus pushing in and out of the key in different combinations. The key seemed blocked.
Finally, after 4 - 8 times of attempting to turn the key in the above manner, the key did turn appropriately and the power system came on. I also have noticed that my Ready signal is 30 seconds or so slower to come on sometimes than someone else's 400h.
Has anyone had this experience? Does it sound like a loose ignition switch and therefore, should I go in for service ASAP? I don't want to be stranded somewhere.
"Driving conditions where the steering wheel must be turned frequently may cause an overload to the electric power steering system. The system will reduce assistance for some time to prevent the power steering from overheating. In this case, you may feel some resistance when turning the steering wheel though it is not a malfunction."
And some of you didn't believe the RX330 AWD system timed out after 45 seconds to prevent the ABS pumpmotor from overheating.
Under certain slippery road conditions, full traction of the vehicle and power against drive wheels cannot be maintained, even though the traction control system is in operation.."
Anyone care to guess what this statement might mean??
Some of the things this can cause are poor fuel economy, engine running too often and excess noise at idle.
The info came from a post on another board. It didn't say that it could cause the lurch some here have complained about, but it seems possible that engine idle being messed up might lead to that behavior as well.
This or something like it would explain why our experiences with this car vary so widely.
Also, some people have mentioned they are getting 27+ mpg within the first month of owning the vehicle. I can't seem to breach the 24 mark. Should I get it checked by the dealership just yet? I do try all the tricks to keep the ICE off the back.
Thanks for your suggestions in advance.
We may be taking delivery soon of a new 400h and then taking off immediately for a family vacation that might quickly add 1500-2000 miles to the RX. For the most part we would not be near any Lexus dealers during the trip although a greater probability of being near some toyota dealers. Are there any reports that anyone is aware of significant or debilitating problems arising in the 400h in the first 2000 miles or so? I read of someone's A/C going out but any others to be aware of that could affect the drivability of the vehicle? Thank you.
But it doesn't weigh 2 tons, accomodate 4 adults + luggage comfortably nor can it handle winter roadbed conditions as well even though it is also AWD.
28 MPG hwy is pretty impressive for a vehicle equivalent to my RX300.
But I'd still like to know what's going on with the city fuel economy. Not saying the city MPH is shabby by any means, just not what I would expect in light of the hwy MPG.
Just changed oil (4,300 miles) to Mobil-1 gold cap and early in-city number showed an increase in mpg, so I'd expect better numbers in future trips. We're up for a 2,800mile trip next week, on interstates hwy.
I've just put my $500 deposit down to reserve an RX400h with my local Lexus dealer last weekend. Since then, I've heard a lot of negative utterances from 400h owners who are getting unsatisfactory mileage, some as low as the low 20s.
Now I have to decide what to do. Take back my $500 and start all over again?? The Prius, which I rented was nice, but had ZERO acceleration and no luxery or size. I did not consider it safe on a 65 mph hwy.
I've also heard of some owners getting in the upper 20s - like 28+.
What's really going on here? Any thoughts?
1. Driving style. With a hybrid, you can drive very conservatively and get much better mileage.
2. Short trips are very bad on MPG for hybrids. If your use is mostly in town on short trips of less than 10 miles or so, your MPG may suffer.
If you are considering the RX400 for just MPG, know what you are getting into. If you drive it like a 330, you will most likely not achieve more than mid 20's MPG. But you will have the latest technology and more power than the 330.
Don't buy it expecting really good MPG; it is still a 4000+ lb boxy vehicle with a V6 engine. Most drivers appear to be able to achieve 27-28 MPG, which is better than the 330 by 15 % or so. But one has to drive for MPG, not "spirited driving".
No one seems to know why, no explanation forthcoming from Toyota or Lexus, but unlike the Prius, the best city, stop and go traffic, mileage appears to be 24 MPG or less.
Note that neither of these are "bad" numbers, just not what Lexus and Toyota led the buying public to expect.
My best guess is that the ICE must be kept running, or run more often, just to keep the catalytic converter up to optimum operating temperature. With the Lexus there is also the possible issue of the need to keep the engine water jacket temperature elevated to a level that will best accomodate the optimum operation of the climate control system's reheat/remix air conditioning cycle.
The Prius, being a Toyota, cares not so very much about discomforting the passengers slightly so it has a c-best setting to allow the climate control to operate in economy mode, bypassing the reheat/remix cycle altogether.
I was recently informed by Lexus that the C-best option will not be made available for the RX400h, but maybe the HL will have it.
Additionally the Prius has an extra catalyst stage which traps the unburned hydrocarbons until the catalyst is up to temperature and then opens a flapvalve in the exhaust path so those can be burned.
My guess is that upscaling the Prius' catalyst technique from an I4 of ~1 liter to a V6 of 3.3 liters didn't work out.
So since the engine must typically run continuously for highway duty and sometimes (often??)"uselessly" in the city insofar as motive force is concerned the city fuel economy suffers.
I did not have the fuel door open for anywhere near 30 minutes, but the Lexus timing might have been changed to something shorter (10 minutes?). Since that time I haven't had any refueling problems at Costco, because I do not open the fuel door until I am ready to refuel and the engine is shut off.
The more in city driving I do lowers my average mpg. My calculated mileage through 6000 mile is just under 27 mpg.
All of the above is between 5 and 6 mpg better than in my 2003 RX300 and this car weighs more and the power increase is quite noticible.
We stayed with a friend in Vancouver, WA who lives 5 minutes from work. He bought the RX330 which is the right car for him. I would buy my 400h again as would he buy the RX330. Determine what your driving pattern will be and buy accordingly.
ANYBODY ELSE HAD THIS PROBLEM??
Love the car, 27 mpg (calculated) commuting and trips (to Tahoe - 6000 ft climb). Our 2002 Highlander was getting 18/21 so am pleased with the mileage.
On the other hand, look at consumer reports' real world mpg ratings for the Rx330. Making those same in-town 1-3 mile trips, I could expect somewhere around 12mpg. On the highway, I could expect somewhere around 26mpg for an average of 18mpg.
The bottom line is that you can expect significantly more power with the 400h with about 30-40% better gas mileage. Depending on the cost of gas, that will add up to somewhere around $6K and $12K in gas savings & significantly less air pollution over the life of the car.
Why don't you pull the “parent” fuse and insist the children not remove the belt until you are fully stopped? Even a small bump from behind can injure a small child and change their lives forever.
Service tech said that I shouldn't take any long trips until it is checked out, and as long as it wasn't blinking, it was OK to drive.
With the holidays coming up this week, I'm not able to get the car to the dealer for service until a week from now.
I hope it is something as simple as an oxygen sensor, and not something more serious.
Several TSBs, and/or revisions to the original one first issued in early 2003, are available describing the three commonly occuring circumstances under which it is deemed most likely to occur.
To date there have not been enough "votes" to state that the 06 models do or do not have the same problem.
So in the meantime I would vote for the RXh.
Go to airsept.com and read up on their EED, electronic evaporator dryer.
Turn the A/C off unless you need it for cooling.
And now delay that "transition" decision just a bit in favor of fuel economy and you have a goodly level of personal frustration with cruise control.
What is it? Fuses or Relay.
Note: Also found the Snail skeleton on the battery terminal.