Howdy, Stranger!

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

Toyota Avalon Starting Difficulties



  • I had the starting system checked and the battery, starter, and alternator all checked just fine. I've tried looking at some of the wires connecting to them and they look fine to me, no corrosion. I have been having to start it most of the time now with a jump box and only occasionally does it ever start on its own. I changed to battery in it today and it did not start over. When I use the jump box it takes a minute or two of before it starts and I have to turn the key at least four or five times. It has not stopped while driving so far, and seems to drive just fine even when lights, AC, and radio are on. I always try to start it before jumping it and a few times it has tried to start but then quits. Pretty much at a loss right now, the only explanation I've come to is it is possessed- by what I do not know.
  • I have a 2000 Avalon XLS w/76,000 miles. It is garaged and receives regular maintenance. Yesterday, I tried to crank it and the key would not turn in the ignition, the spare key would not turn either. I played with both for a while, removing them and trying again and it finally started. This has never happened before, but I am a little concerned as I am about to take it on the road for an 800-mile trip and don't want to be stranded away from home. Has anyone else ever had this happen? The keys just did not turn--no sound, just as if I had put the wrong key in the ignition. THANKS

  • tfeltontfelton Posts: 80
    This happens to my wife's Sienna once in a while. All that has to be done is take the steering wheel and forcefully turn it left and right (even though it's been locked). Actually, it just happened to me today in her car and the situation was quickly corrected.

    I was told to do this by my Toyota Service Department.
  • finfin atlantaPosts: 591
    Post #97 above is right and it also happens on the 2003 models. Best guess is that it happens on all the '00 to '04 year model Avalons. Not a problem, if you know the secret. My wife had it happen to her also.... ;)
  • tjc78tjc78 JerseyPosts: 6,663
    My '03 did it as well. Seemed to happen when parking on an incline and the wheel wasn't perfectly straight. Nevertheless, the first time it happened it took me a second to figure it out.

    2017 Buick Enclave / 2017 Hyundai Elantra

  • Hi,
    I have had a little issue starting the vehicle lately and first time I am always unable to start and I see the front defrogger light flash non-stop and I try to start the vehicle again and it starts. Not sure it's related to the battery that makes the defrogger light flash? Anyone has the same experience? Please advise. Thanks.
  • Hello. I have a 2002 Toyota Avalon with 103,000 miles. Car is running fine and starts fine on a daily basis. But, if I have to start and restart the car several times in short period of time, it will sometimes have problems starting. It will always crank and turn over but, the engine will not idle very strong and then it will just die. This only occurs if I have to make a lot stops and need to restart the engine several times in a short period of time. It starts fine if the engine is cold. Any ideas what might be causing this? I appreciate any and all responses. Thanks for you help.
  • Mr_ShiftrightMr_Shiftright Sonoma, CaliforniaPosts: 58,488
    I'd certainly have the fuel pressure regulator looked at. Sometimes you can test this yourself by pulling off the vacuum line that regulates it---if that line has fuel in it that dribbles out, or if it dribbles out of the regulator, it's toast. What happens is that the fuel pressure in your fuel line bleeds off as the car sits, requiring the fuel pump to re-pressurize the entire fuel system every time you start.

    MODERATOR --Need help with anything? Click on my name!

    Share Your Vehicle Reviews Here

  • Recently put a new motor in my 95 toyota avalon. The car won't start on the first try. On the second try it will start but won't stay running. Have to keep starting about six or seven times in order to stay running. Once it stays running and you put it in drive and step on the gas it just seems like it won't take its gas. The tach will go up but the speedometer doesn't. When you step on the gas the car will bog out; let off the gas and it will pick it up some. It does not do this when the car is in reverse. Any suggestions.
  • jackdoe36jackdoe36 Posts: 1
    I'm writing this on behalf of my grandparents and their 1996 Avalon that has 30k miles on it. It has recently been serviced for fluids and the battery has been tested. The problem as described to me is that sometimes, not every time, Grandpa tries to start the car there is dead silence. No clicks or turning of the starter. Then after some fiddling it starts up. He tells me that when he has this problem he has to push in on the shifter (not sure if there is a button or if he is just pushing it up further in gear or something similar), and when he gets the right spot, it will crank and usually turn over. He thinks alternator/battery are both fine. Anyone have any clue what else we can look into before bringing it in to the service shop? One local mechanic already looked at it and was puzzled by the description and was unable to duplicate the problem when he was looking at it.
    Thanks very much!
  • gmaniac70gmaniac70 Posts: 1
    Please bear with me. The water pump in my 2000 Avalon XLS (3.0 liter) DOHC went and was changed. A friend of mine is a mechanic and he has a garage and he changed it. I was in attendance whie he was putting it back together. Okay so he set the timing (new timing belt was installed too). He turned the crank manually to make sure that there wasn't any obstructio9ns with the valves and pistons cause he caims this motor is an interference motor, although I have now read otherwise. After that checked out OK we started the car to make sure timing was ok before reassembling everything. Car fired right up without any hesitation. So we started putting everything back together (hosing for motor mount tower, all covers, belts etc etc). We fired it up one more time and it fired up no problem. Then we added the water and antifreeze with a burp tank. Got everything all back together and started the car, it needed to be jumped cause the battery was weak. Car started withiout hesitation once again. There was a rubbing noise(kinda loud) so he looked down and noticed that the crank timing belt sprocket was rubbing on the cover. You could actually see the sprocket a little as it had rubbed through. So brillianly he decides he is going to just snap off the part of the cover that is rubbing rather than taking it back apart and fixing it correctly. So he breaks off pieces and gets enough off so it won't rub. To access this he had to loosen tho upper motor mount and the bolts that connect it to the motor. One of these bolts also has a ground connected to it and at this point the groung was off. He told me to start it to make sure it wasn't rubbing (I didn't realize that the ground wasn't hooked up) So the car started fine but immediately shut down within a second or two. There wasn't any sputtering or anythisg. I did notice the dash lights were real dim when it started (It had to be jump to start this time too). So we tightened everything back up and tried to start it and now it will not start. Gas was low so we added gas but still didn't start. Now I am wondering if that ground not being hooked up fried something or bvlew a fuse. But we checked the sparkplugs and the cylinder in fronmt on the passenger side is getting spark. So my question is where do I go from here. He looked at the spark plugs and there was a little gunjk on them and hes trying to say the head gasket is gone. I know enough about cars to know that is not the reasson it wont start. It started fine 4 times prior. I feel like he is trying to use that as a cop out because he knows he made a boo boo when he told me to start it without th ground hooked up. I am wondering if a piece of the cover he snapped off fell back on the crank timing sprocket and made the belt jump a few teeth when we started it. Because thats how it acted it started then just cut straight off, no sputtering just straight off like the timing slipped. I would take any advice possible please and could someone tell me if this 3.0 liter DOHC is an intererence motor in which the valves and pistons could collide if the timing was off.
  • 1999ava1999ava Posts: 1
    edited July 2010
    1999 Avalon will not start - as in battery failure; however, when one plays with the ignition key for a while it will. Is there a common problem with the security system?
  • irisheyescuirisheyescu Posts: 1
    edited July 2010
    2001 Toyota Avalon XLS, 58,0000 miles. I'm new to this site and this is my first post so I'll start from the beginning... I went to start my car and all it will do is crank, startled by this I put the key to the on position and waited for the dinging (those dinging sounds for putting seat belt on) to stop and then the car started right up. I then just recently tried starting the car without waiting for the dinging to stop and it just cranks and cranks about the same amount of time for the dinging to stop and it will fire right up. So this is telling me it has something to do with the time lapse for something to open or happen, but what? I'm getting ready to make a 1800 mile trip by myself and worried about getting stranded. And I also don't have the $ to spend on a lot of diagnosis testing that I'm hearing from auto shops when I called yesterday. Please after reading so many helpful posts, I'm hoping someone will have an idea of what is happening. Thank you.
  • finfin atlantaPosts: 591
    First wild guess: weak fuel pump. The time is the delay in building up pressure in the line to supply fuel at the right pressure to the engine. Possibly a partly blocked fuel line also.

    Second wild guess: Electrical, some type of coil failure...but that's not my area, so... others will need to help here.

    This is a 10 year old car, anything is possible... but something is going wrong as you cannot start the car normally. Hope this helps.....
  • 2001 Avalon dies when you let off the gas. it will crank back up each time. Any ideas?
  • mcclearyflmcclearyfl Posts: 149
    Are you referring to cold starts? Probably the idle control valve. If this happens when the engine is warm, the idle control valve is still a possibility, but less so.
  • sumukhgsumukhg Posts: 1
    edited November 2010
    2000 Avalon 100K miles on it. Got its timing belt, water pump, oxygen sensor, thermostat replaced recently.

    two weeks ago: my car at first cranks, cranks, resets date, time and then starts. All my recorded FM stations were also lost.

    last week friday: Cranks cranks but doesnt start had to call AAA to jump start it thought it will be battery problem

    Yesterday: Mrng I tried to start but it just cranked cranked , reset-ted date and time and thats it. It didnt start the car. It was around 50 degrees outside. In the evening one of my friend told Try one two crank then try once again and it started . Tried the same today too and it worked.

    Can some one help in knowing what the main problem is..
  • yfcyfc Posts: 3
    I have very similar problem. 2001 Avalon 180,000 mi. Always runs great, do my own work. I had drivers door panel off to replace broken mirror --- disconnected negative battery terminal. All complete, but now in less than one week, 4 times when I go to start car, it just clicks, but upon immediately turning key off and on a couple of times, it starts normally (very fast turnover with a strong battery). But, electronic time, date, and radio settings all reset to default. Hmmmm, what is it? Electrical? Poor ground? ave I confused the computer?
    I'm leaving on a 1600 mi trip in 4 days, so please help guess my problem. Thank you. Curt
  • I had the same starter problem many others have, intermittent start issues where it would start but quickly die. Took it to the shop with information I found on this site and did the following three things. I don't know which one fixed the problem, but the car has been running faithfully ever since (knock on wood).

    1. Replaced battery
    2. Cleaned Idle Control Valve
    3. Replaced fuel filter
  • yfcyfc Posts: 3
    I fixed my problem by removing and THOROUGHLY cleaning both battery terminals at both ends, then reassembling using a little Vaseline. No more clicking without starting. Curt
  • I have a 2009 Avalon Limited with the push button starter. A couple of months ago I started having problems with the starter. I pushed on the brake and waited for the green light to come on, but it stayed orange. After several attempts, the light turned green and it started. This happen on and off for the next few weeks. I took it to the dealership 2 days before the 3 yr warranty expired with 11,563 miles on it. When I left the car there the tech was still trying to get the car started so they could get it into a service bay. The problem was the brake switch that activates the starter button. No charge since it was still under warranty, but I wonder how often this is going to occur in the future.
  • Am having same problem. Mine is a 2007 Avalon. Anyone have an answer out there?
  • My 2003 Avalon does the same thing. The dealer also said it was security related and it had to do with how I locked it. If manually locked it would mess up the security system. I just turn it off and on (sometimes 10-20 times) to get it to start.
  • 1996 Toyota Avalon has been an excellent car for 17 years with 324,000 miles on it. Love it.
    My son took it to college and is having problems with headlights turning on after the car is turned off and he walks away. He comes back and the headlights have turned on and run the battery down. The light relay was replaced but it happened again a month later. Sometimes the chimes go on when getting out of the car as it does when the key is left in the ignition.
    My son is on a college budget, needs the car but not the expense.
    Anyone know what is going on how to fix it?
    Thanks in advance.
  • yfcyfc Posts: 3
    Check for a bad door switch, probably on driver's side.
  • ron52ron52 Posts: 5

    Hi, I have a 1997 Toyota Avalon. A couple of months ago, I noticed the starter occasionally not doing anything when turning the ignition key the first time. Nothing no noise no solenoid click at all. Warning lights, radio and such all would come on but nothing from the starter. I would try a second time and the car would start right up. This got progressively more frequent and the car wouldn't start on the second try. I took it in to a mechanic who said the battery was okay so it must be the starter. He put in a new factory starter and all was fine for about a month and then the same thing happened. I was stranded after driving the car for ten minutes, turning off, and then ten minutes later trying to start and would get nothing. No click, nothing. Again warning lights and radio would work. This time after trying for an hour and even trying to jump start, I got nothing and had it towed. The next morning the mechanic said the car started right up and they couldn't repeat my problem. They replaced the starter again. All well for a few days. Then again only once, the first try it failed and then started second try. Discussed with mechanic and had battery checked again and all was well. Mechanic said I needed to have car brought to him when it would't start for him to diagnose the problem. A month goes by and not one incident until yesterday where after driving for 30 minutes I left it for about an hour and it wouldn't start. No click or noise. Just the warning lights and radio would work. I tried and tried. Nothing. I was in the process of calling for a tow and tried again (30 minutes later) and it started right up. I drove home. Several hours I tried it again and it started right up. The mechanic and I am baffled. I think it probably was not the starter. Are there any relay switches that could act intermittently? Security system failure? I have noticed very infrequently an issue with using the factory remote locking and alarm system where using the remote alarms would sound until I was able to start car and put it into gear. I am grasping at straw here.
    Any ideas would be greatly appreciated. Sorry about the lengthy question.

  • ron52ron52 Posts: 5

    I haven't had a starter issue in the10 days since I started locking and unlocking the car with the key only and not the remote alarm/lock mechanism. I am keeping my fingers crossed this is it and problem solved. Only problem is I then spent nearly $500 replacing a working starter.....

  • crkyolfrtcrkyolfrt Posts: 2,345

    @ron52 said:
    Hi, I have a 1997 Toyota Avalon. A couple of months ago, I noticed the starter occasionally not doing anything when turning the ignition key the first time. > snip

    I would replace the positive heavy battery cable from the + terminal on the battery to the starter connection 'at' the starter. I would also replace the negative cable but do the positive one first. Also though, confirm the ground strap to the engine block as good clean connections on the engine AND the chassis. Do not go just by a visual check as that often does not tell the real tale.

  • djohnson1djohnson1 Posts: 54
    reddog13 said:

    I have a 2009 Avalon Limited with the push button starter. A couple of months ago I started having problems with the starter. I pushed on the brake and waited for the green light to come on, but it stayed orange. After several attempts, the light turned green and it started. This happen on and off for the next few weeks. I took it to the dealership 2 days before the 3 yr warranty expired with 11,563 miles on it. When I left the car there the tech was still trying to get the car started so they could get it into a service bay. The problem was the brake switch that activates the starter button. No charge since it was still under warranty, but I wonder how often this is going to occur in the future.

    I had start problems with my 2006 Avalon on and off for several years. The green light wouldn't come on and pushing the button therefor wouldn't crank it. Jumper cables didn't help. Asked the dealer about it and even talked to a tech about it. Nobody knew anything except sometimes they are a little difficult and need more voltage. Much later my mechanic told me there was a TSB (technical service bulletin) on the issue. Dealer didn't even know about it! Go figure. My mechanic said the dealer should fix it. Dealer ended up replacing the starter button unit and also the brake switch. It's been perfect ever since. There is also a bypass switch for tow truck drivers that help make starting easier. You can also use it. Look it up in your owners manual if you want to look it up. I can't remember the details now. Also, it's a good idea to have a couple of extra batteries in the glove box for the remote. I got two from Amazon for about $6.00. Easy to replace. Manual tells you what kind and how to do it.
  • 1999 Toyota Avalon won't start, no lights (inside or out when turned on), even with boost. Checked boost connection carefully. Left car several days with light on.
Sign In or Register to comment.