Toyota Problems

RepairPal has identified the most common problems with the Toyota as reported by actual vehicle owners. We'll tell you what the problem is and what it'll take to fix it.

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Known Problems

At higher mileages, (125,000-150,000) the automatic transmission may not shift correctly. This can be caused by the throttle position sensor being out of adjustment or a shift solenoid needing to be replaced. Typically the transmission does not need to be completely overhauled.

Intermittent failure of a purge control valve in the evaporative emission system can cause the Check Engine Light to illuminate. A failed valve should be replaced to correct this problem.

 

The valve cover gaskets have a tendency to leak oil, especially the one near the firewall.

The Throttle Position Sensor can get out of adjustment due to wear in the throttle body or due to carbon build up. This will cause the idle timing to advance more than 30 degrees which will cause very high HC and NOx emissions. Conversely, the Throttle Position Sensors can wear out and not properly advance the timing which causes a lack of power and poor fuel economy.

The head gasket may fail due to a defect in manufacturing of the cylinder block.

On this vehicle, the head bolts are known to pull the threads out of the engine block, allowing the head to slightly lift, and causing head gasket failure. Symptoms may include:

  • Overheating
  • White smoke from exhaust
  • Rough running conditions and/or inability to start or idle
  • White or cream colored oil on dipstick
  • Check engine light 
  • OBD Trouble Codes P2181, P0300

When the head gasket fails, the bolt holes for the head bolts must be repaired before the cylinder head can be remounted. 

This issue is not always preventable, but to help avoid it, never run the engine if the engine temperature is ever above the normal range. 

There are occasional reports of daytime running light problems.

If the vehicle will not crank over, the most common problem is the starter, which tend to fail at about 100,00-125,000 miles. Sometimes it is only the starter solenoid contacts, but often the complete starter (including solenoid) needs to be replaced.

The Toyota 4Runner may develop a condition with the HVAC ducting system causing noisy and faulty operation of the blend doors. The blend doors are actuated by the selector button, and change the direction of airflow to the selected location, i.e. vent, floor, defrost. 

The correction is to replace the blend doors.

The Evaporative system may have problems with the vapor canister releasing charcoal pellets that plug the vent valve. Typically a Code P0441, P0442 and P0446 will be set. The key code is the P0446 which is a vent valve electrical failure. The proper repair is to replace the entire canister with all the valves as a unit. This is located on top of the fuel tank and is expensive. Our Technicians tell us that for awhile Toyota was covering these problems, but this may have changed. It would not hurt to call the dealer if this problem occurs to see if Toyota is still helping with these repairs.

The idle air control motors tend to become carboned up at around 100,000 miles and can cause a start and stall and/or stalling at stop sign problems. Our technicians tell us that many times these motors can be cleaned, however, the sure bet is to replace the idle air control motor and clean the throttle body.

One or more oxygen sensors may fail resulting in illumination of the Check Engine Light.

One or more oxygen sensors may fail resulting in illumination of the Check Engine Light.