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Car Problems

RepairPal has identified the most common car problems based on complaints from 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

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.

One or both head lights may not work due to premature head light bulb burnout and/or bulb harness failure. Care should be taken to inspect the head light harness connector for damage when replacing bulbs. Damaged connectors should be replaced.

One or more power windows may fail. Our technicians tell us this is commonly due to a failed window regulator which will require replacement.

Reverse gear failures and noise in the manual transmission models are common.

The digital display portion of the instrument cluster may fail. Our technicians tell us the entire instrument cluster will need to be replaced to correct this concern.

Engine oil leaks are common from the valve cover gaskets and camshaft chain tensioner gasket.

Erratic turn signal operation can be a result of a failing turn signal flasher relay which will require replacement.

An engine overheating condition may develop due to a failed radiator cooling fan controller. The failed controller should be replaced to correct this issue.

The automatic transmission may fail prematurely. Transmission overhaul or replacement may be necessary to correct this concern.

The crankshaft pulley bolt may become loose or break causing loss of power steering operation and other related engine accessories. Some of these vehicles may be involved in a recall for this issue. Our technicians tell us that an updated bolt may be available. Replacing as necessary and properly torquing the crankshaft bolt will commonly correct this issue.

Problems with the audio system have been reported. There are software upgrades available that will address certain issues. Problems unrelated to software issues will require standard repair procedures.

It's quite common for the the fuel pump to fail, causing a no start condition. The engine will crank over but it will not start.

To verify this the fuel pressure and electrical power to the fuel pump should be checked. If the pump is getting power and there's no pressure, replace the pump. If it isn't getting power, check the fuel pump relay circuit.

On the 2.7L V6 and 2.4L 4 Cylinder, a defective exhaust gas recirculation (EGR) switching valve may cause an intermittent rough or unstable idle engine.

    Parking lights not turning off intermittently or all the time. The common problem is with the cabin fuse box.  Complete replacement of the assembly is necessary to fix the problem.

The fuel injectors can fail and cause drivability problems. Often there is no Check Engine light and the failures can be caused by corrosion of the connector, clogging beyond the point of cleaning, and/or internal failures.

The crankshaft position sensor, ignition module, and/or powertrain control module (PCM) may fail resulting in illumination of the Check Engine Light with ignition system related fault codes stored in the PCM. Patience is necessary when dealing with this specific situation as normal diagnostic procedures are not effective. In many cases, the best option is to replace parts, one at a time until the fault is corrected.

Abnormal noise may be noted when shifting or reverse gear is selected in vehicles with a manual transmission. If this problem is encountered, proper operation of shift cables and clutch should be verified before any other repairs are attempted.

Toyota released a software update to fix a problem that caused the Check Engine Light to come on. Before the update, the computer would report a problem with the catalytic converter when there wasn't one.

Vehicles equipped with a 7-speed automatic transmission may develop a rough shifting condition, most commonly going up from first to second gear and going down from third to second or second to first gear. Our technicians tell us this is due to an internal component failure. Mercedes has released updated parts; the transmission will need to be removed and disassembled to complete the necessary repairs.

The Mercedes Benz R350 may have engine oil seeping or leaking from the back of the cylinder heads. This is commonly misdiagnosed as leaking valve covers.

On the back of the cylinder heads there are three, in total, plastic expansion plugs that plug access ports to the camshafts. These plugs are well known for seeping oil, and leaking if left unattended. The oil will run down the back of the engine and eventually make it to the ground. 

Replacement of these three plastic plugs is extremely simple, and should be done as regular maintenance. The recommended interval for replacement is every 60,000 miles.

The camshaft adjuster solenoid (which is related to the variable valve timing system) may fail or timing chain/balance shaft components may wear, resulting in illumination of the Check Engine Light and various drivability issues. Mercedes-Benz has released a service bulletin outlining specific repair instructions depending on fault codes stored.

Vehicles equipped with a 7-speed automatic transmission may develop a rough shifting condition, most commonly going up from first to second gear and going down from third to second or second to first gear. Our technicians tell us this is due to an internal component failure. Mercedes has released updated parts; the transmission will need to be removed and disassembled to complete the necessary repairs.

Going over large bumps in convertible models may cause the roll bar to deploy, rendering the roof inoperative. Special tools are generally required to return the roll bar to its stowed position.

Irregular and premature tire wear can be caused by the front thrust link bushings cracking and causing excessive movement in the suspension. The thrust link bushings are fluid-filled (to help reduce vibration), so if they crack, they will leak oil.

The crankshaft position sensor may fail. Symptoms of this are: The engine will crank—but not start—especially when the engine is warm. The car may start again if it is left to cool off, but it may run roughly or have poor performance. Communicating these specific symptoms to your technician can save diagnostic time.

The relay which turns the airmatic suspension pump on may fail causing the pump to run continuously. This can result in failure of the pump motor or a dead battery as the pump motor will continue to run after the car is turned off. Also, Worn airmatic pump mount bushings can causes noises in the front axle while driving on bumpy roads or a buzzing noise while the pump is running.

When starting the engine after sitting for several hours, a knocking sound may be heard for several seconds. This is a common issue with the 2006-2010 Mercedes Benz ML350. There are three common problems that can cause this sound to occur:

-Oil pressure building too slowly, allowing for movement between the crankshaft and crankshaft bearings

-Stretch or wear of timing chain and components

-Balance shaft (counter rotating shaft) gear wear

The remediation for these problems can be crankshaft bearing replacement with correct size, replacement of timing components, or balance shaft replacement.

It is not uncommon for the power steering rack to develop a fluid leak requiring replacement of the rack assembly. Loss of power steering fluid may also cause an abnormal noise and damage to the power steering pump.