Last post on Nov 07, 2013 at 7:33 AM
You are in the Toyota Highlander
What is this discussion about?
Toyota Highlander, SUV
#5067 of 5330 Re: 2008 Toyota Highlander - Water Pump [slade1]
Mar 26, 2011 (9:02 am)
I had a similar experience with the serpentine belt tensioner on my Highlander. At 60,000 miles the belt failed, leaving me stranded -- no power steering, generator or cooling. The black rubber marks on the tensioner pulley led me and the dealer to the conclusion that the tensioner had a bad bearing, causing the belt to fail.
Unfortunately, the cost for replacing the tensioner, water pump (might just as well while doing the tensioner) and belt was over $900. Looking at the bill, I guess they charged me for replacing the belt three times using the flat-rate book -- tensioner includes belt replacement, water pump replacement includes belt replacement and then, of course actually replacing the belt.
I find my local dealer totally untrustworthy. The salesmen who claim to be maintenance advisers have been telling me for over 25,000 miles that my brakes are totally worn out (I looked at them myself and they are not). I tightened the nut on the temperature control myself rather than waiting for the wires to break so the dealer could charge over $700 for a whole new unit. I would think that after years of that nut coming loose on thousands of Highlanders, the so-called maintenance advisors would have made checking it part of the service.
So I would have to score Toyota about average for reliability and blame the dealer for making it seem worse than it actually is. If I had relied on the dealer for all of my maintenance I would be out over $1000 more. He got me on the tensioner because the car wouldn't move and I needed it right away, but I have learned something from his actions when I needed him. I feel sorry for Toyota buyers who don't know much about cars and rely on the dealers. I remember seeing some women (I am not being sexist, I just didn't see any men) crying on the way to the cashier -- they came in for an oil change and went away over $1,000 poorer. They believed the service advisor.
#5068 of 5330 Re: Wheel alignment [05highlander05]
by kyfdx@Edmunds HOST
Mar 26, 2011 (9:35 am)
Immediately after you install the new tires...
#5069 of 5330 Re: timing belt replacement = oil leak. [mjhaif]
Mar 26, 2011 (3:31 pm)
I would be interested in learning what you find to be the cause of the leak. Did the mechanic cause the problem when the timing belt/water pump was changed?
#5070 of 5330 Re: 2008 Toyota Highlander - Water Pump [tsotsi]
Mar 28, 2011 (5:11 am)
So I would have to score Toyota about average for reliability and blame the dealer for making it seem worse than it actually is. If I had relied on the dealer for all of my maintenance I would be out over $1000 more.
Toyota service advisors in general from my experience are some of the worst rip-offs I've seen. True story here, my wife's best friend took her 4-Runner in for an oil & filter change and rotate tires, vehicle was about 3 yrs old and about 38K miles, so it was just off warranty. The service advisor advises to have the tranny fluid changed, says it looks brown.
Well I just happened to have my wife's Highlander in for an oil change as well, so she asked me about it. I told the advisor to bring the vehicle out with the techie who he said recommended it and I want to check the tranny fluid myself. Umm, he's working on another vehicle at the moment. OK I'll wait. Umm, he went to lunch. OK I'll wait. Umm, he left for the day with a personal issue.
We told him to just do the oil & filter and tire rotation. We got home and I checked the tranny fluid and showed her it was still bright pink. My friend was literally stunned that these people do that. I told her this is a very common trick, especially with a female and it can get as bad as when you challenge them and they bring the vehicle out to check the tranny fluid, I've heard of them even pulling the engine oil dipstick out to show that it is brown.
This is why I do not let any dealer touch my vehicles except for a warranty claim. Any maintenance I can't or don't want to do, I have a local independent shop that I trust do the work.
#5071 of 5330 Re: 2008 Toyota Highlander - Water Pump [mikefm58]
Mar 29, 2011 (6:55 pm)
My 2010 HL has been serviced by the dealer since I bought it. First 2 were free, and the 15K was 59 bucks. My service station couldn't beat that price. Been very satisfied. The owners manual indicates that a tranny fluid inspection is required at 30K miles. I was not aware that the fluid she go brown before you replace. I do not allow the engine oil to go black before it is replaced. I do it every 5K as recommended by owner's manual. The tranny fluid service is under 100 bucks. I'll spend the 100 rather than the 2-3K to replace tranny, regardless of color.
#5072 of 5330 Re: 2008 Toyota Highlander - Water Pump [mikefm58]
Mar 29, 2011 (7:47 pm)
I let my dealer do all my work. Thank goodness I own a Toyota and have had NO repairs necessary to my '03 Highlander Limited.
He does a good job, keeps all the records for me (I'm terrible at keeping records) and can tell at a glance the last time my cabin air filter was changed, the engine air filter was changed, IF I need to have my coolant replaced, in addition to the tranny fluid issue.
#5073 of 5330 Re: 2008 Toyota Highlander - Water Pump [toledo73]
Mar 30, 2011 (5:43 am)
I have an 04 HL and apparently my owner's manual in regards to the tranny fluid is different than yours. Mine says something like replace at 6yrs/72K miles if towing, otherwise, check and replace if brownish in color or smells burnt.
Good for you though that you know and trust your dealer. I'm in Florida, home of the $699 dealer fee so that should speak for itself.
#5074 of 5330 Re: 2008 Toyota Highlander - Water Pump [shagnat]
Mar 30, 2011 (5:46 am)
My 04 HL has been rock solid like yours, just tires, oil changes, and a battery so far, still running on the original brake pads at 65K miles. That has really impressed me. I'm driving my wife nuts telling her to listen for the chirp chirp of the break pad wear indicator, LOL. And I'm anal on keeping records.
Mar 30, 2011 (5:51 am)
My steering wheel feels loose. So
Its either I need an alignment or it's something else. How often should I change the fluid?
#5076 of 5330 Re: 2008 Toyota Highlander - Water Pump [mikefm58]
Mar 30, 2011 (7:36 am)
Hmmm, never checked the section if you are towing. Haven't towed a thing in years. But, a good heads up. Funny about the 699 ddeal! Take care, man.