Last post on Oct 31, 2012 at 8:23 AM
You are in the Toyota Camry
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Toyota Camry, Sedan
#20 of 150 Re: 2004 Toyota Camry 4Cyl Ck Eng Lt, P0420 [toptech]
Mar 04, 2009 (9:19 pm)
I have a 2001 4cyl Camry 125kmiles and had the ck engine lt on and live in the northeast area. I went to autozone to ck the code and of course the P0420 popped up. Both sensors were replaced( 1 by the dealer at 90k miles and the 2nd by myself w/aftermarket sensor at 110k miles) I wasn't sure if it was the catalytic converter or not(maybe in denial cause it cost a lot to replace) but to make sure, I disconnected the battery overnite to reset the computer. The next morning, I connected it and the ck eng lite was gone and it hasn't come on ever since. The question is that is my catalytic converter bad or what? Did I do more damage by just resetting the computer or was it just an error? I assume if the cat was bad, the code would pop up. If I'm doing an injustice by resetting the computer tell me so, if not i guess nothing was wrong. I just hope i am not doing any damage.
#21 of 150 Re: 2004 Toyota Camry 4Cyl Ck Eng Lt, P0420 [tmoney4]
Mar 05, 2009 (5:19 pm)
Belive it or not it will be back on. If u had the code cleared it may stay out for several weeks or even a month Trust me it will be back. U will do no more damage to ur car if u clear it everytime it comes back on. But in most states it it has a code current ot in memory it will fail for an emissions sticker. I bet u have a cat that is borderline bad and under the rite circumstances ie load emgine temp fuel trims. The comp will pick up on it and trip the light again. Same thing happens when people replace an 02 sensor thinking they fix this problem and clear the code sometimes the light will stay out for a month til the computer sees the circomstances where the converter is not working the way it should it will put the light back on. Just ck back here when the light comes back on. The 420 code is an emissions code and it wont get u stuck or cause any problems but put the light on and maybe polute a bit more then it should in california standards.
#22 of 150 Re: 2004 Toyota Camry 4Cyl Ck Eng Lt, P0420 [toptech]
Mar 05, 2009 (9:08 pm)
Thanks for the info...i will definitly keep an i on it. Its funny u said that about the sensor. I replaced the downstream sensor9by the converter) and thought that was the problem and scared to take to the dealer cuz i no they r going to charge me an arm and a leg! lol If it goes on of course i will ck the code...if it is the converter approx how much is it from the dealer, i am in NY and dnt hav CA standards. I am a little handy...can i do it myself or is it too hard?Thanks again for the info
Mar 06, 2009 (8:19 pm)
It is Are u stitting down. The rear converter is aprox 1200. The front is aprox 400? Both are monitored by that rear 02 sensor. sometimes changing just front will do the trick. It sucks to change either as far as the cost. The labor is quite simple to change either. Metal gasket where the manifold bolts the head and ring gaskets at either end of frt pipe/converter assembly. Sometime the studs that are in the manifold can be a problem u may or may not need a torch. I know of no other fix other then factory cats as of yet. I am looking into one other alternative but am not sure of what the outcome would be.
#24 of 150 Re: [toptech]
Mar 08, 2009 (7:20 pm)
Thanks again 4 the info...I will definitly keep that in mind if I get the P04020 code and probably end up replacing either 1 or both cat. conv.
#25 of 150 Re: 2001 Toyota Camry 4Cyl Ck Eng Lt, P0420 [tmoney4]
Mar 09, 2009 (9:44 am)
I am having this exact same issue with my '01 camry 4cyl. Somehow I was lucky enough to purchase a "California" model in colorado...lucky me. I have just replaced the back cat 2 weeks ago, I figured it was going bad for a bit because it smelled extra rich and then the light came on. The guy I took it to replaced it for about $400. The light has been flirting on and off since then, I took it in last Friday and he tells me that this is a California model and that he had no idea and that this is the cat that is throwing the code. His quote is $600 for the cat plus labor. My question is, how the heck can you not notice that there is a cat on the exhaust manifold when you're under the car putting the rear cat on? At this point, I'm opting for a second opinion, but is it conceivable that someone could just not notice this? It sure doesn't look like a normal exhaust manifold to me.
My question is this; is this the cat that I should have worried about in the first place and the second one is just redundant since it's a California model? I live in colorado and I don't even have an emissions test to worry about, what I am concerned about is performance and possible ramifications down the road if I don't pony up to fix this in the next couple weeks? Will this cat going bad affect power because I have noticed as well these past couple of weeks that it is more sluggish tackling hills and I get a whiff of exhaust through the vents when it kicks up a gear.
Any help would be greatly appreciated. Also, I noticed one post asking how difficult this is to replace, if necessary, and I ask the same question since two sets of mechanics out here have missed the fact that this thing was even installed in the first place? Why throw good money after bad people?
thank you for your help, I greatly appreciate it after all I have been through with this car I really would like to do it the honor of driving it until it drops
#26 of 150 Re: 2001 Toyota Camry 4Cyl Ck Eng Lt, P0420 [grizz17]
Mar 09, 2009 (4:41 pm)
First question to u would be, Did that mechanic put on a factory cat from the dealer? I think I can even answer my own question And that is gona be a big no. It is roughly 1200 dollars for that rear cat from toyota. and if u use a aftermarket cat inplace of the factory, the light will be back on very shortly. On the california emission camrys Toyotas fix is to replace both cats. Sometimes putting on one new one will get u by for a period of time if the other is borderline. But i cant stress it enough that if u use aftermarket cats u will not get rid of this code and if it does it will be for such a short period of time if u got it for a 100 it would still not be worth it. The cat should not be making is smell rich U may have other problems causing ur car to run rich or lean that would cause damage to ur converter possible melting and u would notice power loss. To ck for a restricted converter u would need to ck the backpressure through the frt air fuel ratio sensor. And to see if ur fuel mixture is correct u would need to monitor ur fuel trim data with a scan tool. My best suggestion is to take it to someone that has had experience with this code on this model car. U may even want to concider taking it to a dealer.Even in colorado I would say u have a 50 50 chance of having a vehicle that has california emissions they are very common. The mechanic should have know it has 2 cats and should of know u dont use aftermarket on these california emisson cars. .If u did not have power related problems and a smell I would say drive it because generally the 420 code will not cause problems just polute a lil more then it should but in ur case where u notice it to be low on power I would have it looked at.Any other questions post here or e mail me I will give the best advice I can
#27 of 150 Re: 2001 Toyota Camry 4Cyl Ck Eng Lt, P0420 [grizz17]
Mar 09, 2009 (4:56 pm)
Hi Folks, Long time since I made my original post. I went through many cat converters before I got it right. Bottomline - be careful about aftermarket oxygen sensors. The dealers replaced the CATs but never even looked at the O2 sensors. When my mechanic changed it, it would not work well with the computer system in the Toyota, causing it to run rich, thus burning out 3 more CATs. (All replaced by my mechanic at no charge.) I finally took it to a dealer who knew how to fix the problem (3rd try). That was over a year ago and (knock wood) no problems since. I have had my Camry for about six years and the engine light was on for most of the first 4 years. Watch out for those O2 sensors. Good luck to all!!
#28 of 150 Re: of 5 2001 4Cyl Check Engine Light - Catalytic Converter by chet01588 [sunporch]
Mar 11, 2009 (11:48 am)
sunporch or anyone. Any South Chicago suburbs master toyota mechanics you can pass on?
#29 of 150 Re: 2001 Toyota Camry 4Cyl Ck Eng Lt, P0420 [toptech]
Mar 25, 2009 (9:29 pm)
I also have a 2001 camry 4 cyl with catalytic converter issues. The car has 91000
miles. The exhaust pipe in front of the catalytic converter broke off, requiring the
replacement of the rear catalytic converter. My mechanic did the replacement with
what I would think is an aftermarket replacement, since the total bill was about $600.
( I am only learning now of the the problems with non-Toyota replacement converters.)
The converter was replaced 6-8 weeks ago. A few weeks ago, the engine light came on. My mechanic said that the code came up that now the front converter needs to
be replaced. Based on what I've been reading, this may not be a final fix since the
back converter is aftermarket. I have asked the service people at my Toyota dealer
if they can determine if the replacement rear converter will work adequately if I go
ahead and replace the front converter with a Toyota converter. They told me that there really is no way to determine that. I am looking at at least $660. for the dealer
to replace the front converter. If the rear converter does not work adequately, then I am looking at an additional $1,325 to replace the rear converter with a Toyota
converter. If both air sensors are bad, there is the chance that the repair bill could
be even $400 higher. I'm trying to determine if it is time to cut my losses. The worst case scenario is that these repairs could add up to about $2,400. Potentially
another $2,400 into an 8 year old car??? The choices seem to be prepare for the
possibility of $2,400 in repairs, or take my chances and just drive it the way it is.
Any experience with how long I might be able to continue driving it if I do nothing?
Or risk the $660. to replace the front converter? Thank you for your thoughts.