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Lexus RX 330
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#1781 of 1867 Lexus RX 330 CEL and VSC lights came on, Code P0766
Sep 21, 2010 (6:21 am)
We bought a 2004 Lexus RX 330 in June 2010 after trying to do as much research as possible and deciding that it would be a good car. I loved it and it seemed to be a good vehicle, until yesterday when the Check Engine and VSC lights came on. I took it to Autozone and was given the code of P0766 Shift Solenoid D Performance or Stuck Off. We took it on the interstate and I don't think it's shifting into overdrive (3000 rpm at 70 mph). We also found out that we need a new battery (it hasn't died yet but it's the original battery so about 7 years old) and maybe need to have the alternator looked at--I'm not sure if these two issues are related and I can't find anything about P0766 and the Lexus RX330. We were on vacation last week and left that car at home so it did sit for about 8 days. Again, I don't know if that would cause the shift solenoid issue. Any ideas??
#1782 of 1867 Re: Lexus RX 330 CEL and VSC lights came on, Code P0766 [mcmillian712]
Sep 21, 2010 (8:17 am)
Being a 2004 model and still on original battery is unusual. My sister's and wife's 2004 RX 330's batteries were both replaced last year.
I don't know a weak battery has anything to do with a stuck shift solenoid. But with all the electronic these days, replacing the battery could reset some programs.
#1783 of 1867 Re: Lexus RX 330 CEL and VSC lights came on, Code P0766 [mcmillian712]
Sep 21, 2010 (10:47 am)
3000 RPM 70 MPH sounds like OD to me. Can you hear/watch the tach for each of the 5 shifts? Are any sloppy, slipping, etc.?
Original battery still?! Great, you got your $ worth. If you're having any electrical trouble with an RX, start there with a fresh, new battery that has a the highest RESERVE AMP rating you can find so it will last a while (I don't know about 7 years though).
I don't think it's likely the battery is the cause of a CEL trouble code for a shift solenoid, but I'd still start with a good battery anyway. If you're out of powertrain warrantee I'd suggest taking it to a trusted TRANSMISSION mechanic and ask if they will do a free diagnostic. Tell them if there is nothing internally wrong you will have them service the transmission with new fluid, filter, and gasket (preferred to the dealer's "flush"). I found a trustworthy and helpful place in Reseda, CA. Let me know if that helps you, and I'll email you directly.
I'd only drive it straight to the diagnostic and not use the car otherwise until the cause of the code is repaired. You don't want to risk damaging the transmission with a stuck or damaged valve, wear debris in the fluid, or anything else for that matter.
P.S. Oh, also changing the battery usually results in erasing the CEL codes and may make it harder to diagnose. If the car starts OK, maybe hold off on a new battery just for now. See what the transmission mechanic has in mind.
Good luck. Please post your findings.
Sep 30, 2010 (8:49 am)
I live in VA so the shop in CA won't be much help to me, but thanks anyway.
The car is an hour and a half away right now at my cousin's repair shop. They didn't really think it was going to be a big deal until they hooked it up to the computer and found out that the shift solenoid is inside of the transmission (I'm not totally sure that it is, but hey what do I know), so they wouldn't even touch it and said the transmission would have to be dropped to replace it. They did, however, replace the battery so that will probably reset some stuff. I will have to drive it home about 75 miles so most likely the lights will come back on. I'm taking it to a shop on Monday and based on what I've given them (VIN, code problems) they are fairly confident they can fix it. Of course, I'm prepared for them to run the diagnostics and then go "Ummm, nevermind." If they cannot fix it, then I will take it to the local Toyota dealer (the car dealer I bought this from 3 months ago wants me to do that before they'll even remotely consider helping me out) and hopefully they can do something with it. I hope it doesn't come to that because their hourly rate is waaaay higher. The shop I'm taking it to Monday says if it is indeed the solenoid then it's a 4 hour job and the transmission will not have to be dropped. Evidently, the car dealer called the local Toyota dealer service center and the mechanic there said something similar. However, neither of them have seen the car yet, they're just going off of specs. So, we'll see. Hopefully I'm not out a couple thousand bucks in the next few weeks.
Thanks for the responses, I'll post the result.
#1785 of 1867 Re: Rx 330 with 93,000 miles [jbumstead]
Sep 30, 2010 (8:59 am)
I just bought a 2004 RX 330 (had 97K on it) and my reasons for it are very similar to yours. I've had it a little over 3 months and it's sitting in a shop right now with a shift solenoid problem. It basically won't shift into overdrive, but otherwise drives/shifts perfectly. I've been told a few things--1) the shift solenoids are inside the transmission and therefore the transmission will need to be dropped for the repair and I'm looking at about $2,000 and 2) the shift solenoids are not so far in that the transmission will need to be dropped and it should be about a 4 hour job. The first possibility is from the shop where the car is now and they're essentially like a jiffy lube and the second possibility is from an actual automotive shop nearby that has not actually seen the car yet, they're just going off the VIN, the P0766 code and the specs that they ordered. So I'm not really sure what's up, all I know is that I don't have my car right now and probably won't have it for at least another week and am looking at potentially a $2,000 (maybe more) repair. I love the way the car looks but I'm pretty heartbroken over this. This is my second Lexus and I'm disappointed in the brand. My suggestion is to do tons of research (which I did) and make absolutely sure that you are prepared to spend a couple thousand dollars in case something goes wrong. I plan on keeping mine once it's fixed, but wow, I hope this is the only major issue we have with it.
#1786 of 1867 2004 Lexus RX 330 Shift Solenoid Problem - UPDATE
Oct 14, 2010 (4:53 am)
I finally got the car back yesterday...after putting a new transmission in it. I took it to a transmission shop nearby and they said the fluid was black and suggested a rebuild ($3500). The dealer I bought the car from was able to find a transmission with 29K miles for $1100 and then agreed to split the bill with me 50/50. I ended up paying $1000 and may be getting a little money back, but that's not a guaranteed. I was somewhat shocked the solution to my problem of not going into overdrive was to replace the transmission. I'm guessing the person who had it before me did not take care of it, which is always a possibility when you buy a used car. I'm happy to have it back, but man I hope this is the only major issue we have with it.
#1787 of 1867 Re: 2004 Lexus RX 330 Shift Solenoid Problem - UPDATE [mcmillian712]
Oct 14, 2010 (8:59 am)
Suggestion: Check the transmission fluid condition very regularly, and have it serviced with the correct fluid by a trusted transmission shop (not a quick lube place). Avoid the dealer's transmission "flush". Don't expect that dealer service includes any transmission service.
The black fluid is the result of an internal problem that spread to all other components of the system. It's likely been brewing for a while.
Just my $.02, but free to you.
#1788 of 1867 Re: Poor Service [quattroporte12]
Oct 20, 2010 (7:28 am)
Quattroporte12, sorry that I'm two years late replying to your message. I somehow missed it. When I rented a Murano, it was at Enterprise Leasing. The location that I went to in Tampa, Florida just happened to be across the street from a Nissan dealership. So it appeared pretty easy to get one at that time. There was also a Mercedes Benz dealership nearby, and one time I rented a Mercedes Benz C300 Sport sedan.
#1789 of 1867 Re: Headlight condensation problems [tdtibbetts]
Oct 25, 2010 (1:48 pm)
Hi There, Did you find a source for the molding? Mine blew off as well and I haven't been able to find a replacement part. Thanks!
#1790 of 1867 2008 RX 350 Warning Light
Oct 26, 2010 (7:44 am)
New to this forum. My wifecalled me and has a warning light she only described as a "circle that is open at the top" with an exclamation point next to it? Without the manual for me to find out what this is, can anyone fill me in? I'd appreciate it, as she works 65 miles away from me and I can't get to her car. Thanks