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2000 Toyota Avalon XLS engine trouble

Hi all,



I have a 2000 Toyota Avalon XLS with approximately 110,000 miles on it, and would like to replace the engine with a newer engine, because other than the engine that makes a light grinding noise and pauses for 1 - 2 seconds when I step on the gas pedal (as well as stalling occasionally), the car itself is fine.



Does anyone have any experience with this (with either the engine problem or engine replacement)? If the latter, how much would it cost to have this job done (which Avalon engine can I use, up to what year)? I live in Queens, NY.



Thanks!

Brian

Comments

  • edited September 2010
    If you break a shoe lace do you just buy new shoes?

    There are lots and lots and lots of things that make the car run - the engine itself is just one part of a whole interconnected system of things.

    There are lots of places that you can get a grinding noise from - many of them completely harmless like loose heat shields on the exhaust system. If you truly had a grinding noise from inside of the engine it probably would have stopped running already.

    The hesitation when starting out is also likely to be something minor - such as needing new spark plugs, or new wires, or a new air filter...or any number of things.

    What is the maintenance history on the car (other than oil changes)? Plugs, wires, filters, cooling system...? All of that regular maintenance stuff. Is it all up to date? Is you check engine light on? Sounds to me like you have a couple of really minor issues neither of which indicate the need for an engine.
  • edited September 2010
    Hi,

    Thanks for your prompt response. I guess "grinding" noise is not the most accurate description. It's more of a rattling noise, like when an empty shopping cart rolls on a concrete pavement (but much lighter/softer). Other details:

    - All the parts have been maintained/replaced according to the manual.
    - There is a check engine light on.
    - No engine oil loss.
    - No smoke coming out of the pipe.

    Thanks!
  • edited September 2010
    I suppose you could have someone check the compression if you wanted. But nothing you've said indicates an engine problem.

    "rattling" "grinding" "shopping cart" - whatever it is, there are still just many many things that will do this. (My own most recent one was a bad serpentine belt tensioner).

    Did some mechanic listen to this and say you need a new engine?
  • edited September 2010
    Call around to auto parts stores and find one that has free code readings and post here.
    It will give you the area where trouble is.
    No way would I put a new motor in it.
    Ask around and check machanic files on here for good local repair shop.
    Please do not use tire,muffler or quick lube shop.
    After we see the codes from check engine light we can give you info for when you go to repair shop.
    If repair shop says part needs replaced ask him why and can it be checked with meter,you do not want to THROW parts at it.
  • edited September 2010
    I would suggest taking the car to a mechanic given your question and pay for a diagnosis.
  • edited September 2010
    A new Avalon engine will cost as much as the retail value of thr car if it is in really nice shape.
  • edited September 2010
    Hi Cigroller,

    So I took the car to the dealership, and the code was "P0171", which is a "lean fuel condition (flow sensor)". Anyhow, I paid $1,710 for the repair job and the rattling noise and hesitating acceleration symptom is gone, and the car drives like almost new, so I'm quite content -- I would still like to breakdown the cost with you and I would appreciate it if you can tell me if I overpaid for anything:

    DIAGNOSTIC $220.00 ($110.00/Hour for two hours: Diagnose system, trace code, clear code, replaced mass air flow sensor that had a lean fuel condition, and road test)
    - METER SUB-ASSY $213.31

    CHANGE DRIVE BELT (No Labor Charge)
    - DRIVE BELT, VANE PUMP $12.38
    - BELT, V-RIBBED $23.85

    REPLACE TIMING BELT
    - LABOR $561.46
    - PUMP ASSY, WATER $155.26
    - BELT, TIMING $73.29
    - SEAL, TYPE T OIL $11.93
    - SEAL, TYPE T OIL $24.10
    - ANTIFREEZE GALLON $28.96

    Fuel system service(Pressure clean fuel injectors, combustion chamber, intake valves; clean and reset throttle body. Added concentrated fuel system cleaner to fuel tank)
    - Labor $179.95
    - Emission Service $69.99
  • edited September 2010
    Hi hd72mm,

    So I took the car to the dealership, and the code was "P0171", which is a "lean fuel condition (flow sensor)". Anyhow, I paid $1,710 for the repair job and the rattling noise and hesitating acceleration symptom is gone, and the car drives like almost new, so I'm quite content -- I would still like to breakdown the cost with you and I would appreciate it if you can tell me if I overpaid for anything:

    DIAGNOSTIC $220.00 ($110.00/Hour for two hours: Diagnose system, trace code, clear code, replaced mass air flow sensor that had a lean fuel condition, and road test)
    - METER SUB-ASSY $213.31

    CHANGE DRIVE BELT (No Labor Charge)
    - DRIVE BELT, VANE PUMP $12.38
    - BELT, V-RIBBED $23.85

    REPLACE TIMING BELT
    - LABOR $561.46
    - PUMP ASSY, WATER $155.26
    - BELT, TIMING $73.29
    - SEAL, TYPE T OIL $11.93
    - SEAL, TYPE T OIL $24.10
    - ANTIFREEZE GALLON $28.96

    Fuel system service(Pressure clean fuel injectors, combustion chamber, intake valves; clean and reset throttle body. Added concentrated fuel system cleaner to fuel tank)
    - Labor $179.95
    - Emission Service $69.99

    Thanks.
  • edited September 2010
    You can just do a general reply to your own post to reply to the entire board rather than to individual posters.

    The only thing that looks somewhat off kilter to me is the fuel system service. This was likely completely unnecessary. Those kinds of things are often used as "upsell" items that do a lot for shop profits, but probably not so much for customer's cars.

    I wonder a little bit about 2hrs of diagnosis on the P0171 code. However, it is just as often the case that a shop will do no diagnosis and just toss parts on. This is frustrating and a waste of money b/c it doesn't solve the problem and people keep going back and going back (and spending more $$ each time). So maybe the 2 hour charge was because a proper diagnosis was done. (There are multiple reasons that you might get that code and then a whole bunch of things that need to be checked to pinpoint the cause). If that check engine light comes back on and the same code appears I'd be asking for the $220 to be credited to the new work.

    Other than that, if you can find a trustworthy local and independent shop (rather than going to a dealer) you can normally get the same quality service for less $$.
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