Car Problem Reports

Lexus ES300 Sludge Buildup on Engine Due to Infrequent Oil Changes

Lexus ES300 Problem
24 Reports
Me Too

Model Years Affected: 1992, 1993, 1994, 1995, 1996, 1997, 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003

Engine Affected: 3.0L V6

Average Mileage: 139,165 mi (74,556 mi - 279,000 mi)


Sludge can build up in the engine because Lexus did not recommend frequent enough oil changes. Lexus will sometimes offer a discount on cleaning the engine if necessary. Owners who changed their oil every 3,000 miles did not experience these problems. This sludge build up can lead to excessive oil consumption.

  • Visitor, , 3.0L V6, 90,000 mi

    My Lexus problem resulted from a buildup of sludge in the engine. I had followed all the oilchange guidelines but still had a sludge buildup. Lexus agreed to install a new engine in my car even though it was older. They were very agreeable and I have always been treated with courtesy and respect as a Lexus owner. My car now runs like a new Lexus!

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  • Arunnin, , 3.0L V6, 156,935 mi

    Took to Dealship (Toyota) when I noticed large oil spot on garage floor looked underhood oil around motor. Problem came on suddenly no slow steady leak or anything like that. They said it needed seals, etc and it was due to normal wear and tear the cost $2500.00. They fixed and I drove 239 miles when the oil light came on and engine started making real loud racket and died as I pulled to shoulder. Had it towed back to dealership, they said the motor was total loss and offered to replace it with used motor for an additional $4000.00. While the dealership and I worked out a resolution that did not require a kidney. I was in shop several times and saw the actual "sludge" build up, sludge is an understatement it is more like wet concrete or cement at best a very thick paste, "sludge" sounds like a thick liquid, this stuff is not liquid It was 3 inches thick and 1.75" round in several areas and it did not move by itself.

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  • Visitor, , 3.0L V6, 279,000 mi

    Sludge build up even though oil was changed every 3-5k miles. Switched to high mileage oil

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  • Vicki Ward, , 3.0L V6, 74,556 mi

    just bought 2003 Lexus es500 (75k miles) last week and noticed white smoke coming out of tail pipe at startup. I took car to Lexus Dealership today and found out that it has sludged engine and would cost me 12k to replace engine. I have put a call into Lexus customer relations in hope of getting this repair fixed.

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  • J milo, , 3.0L V6, 133,000 mi

    Car runs perfect while cold for about 3 miles. After it warms up it misfires and downshifts.. Idle become irrectic and rough..

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  • Visitor, , 3.0L V6, 132,000 mi

    Major sludge with 3,000 mile synthetic oil changes. Have only owned the car for 1 1/2 years. :(

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  • Visitor, , 3.0L V6, 96,000 mi

    uses a quart per 500 miles

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  •  Rookie

    brought lexus from dealership who turn got from a car rental company. w e took value cover off notice dry sludge on values car wont start what should i do?

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