2003 Toyota Echo/clicking noise

We have a 2003 Toyota Echo that we bought used in August 2007. Very recently (the last day or so), it’s been making a clicking noise. It only happens when the car is on and in park, and you press the brake to shift out of park. The clicking noise will occur when you press the brake to shift, and then again when you lift your foot from the brake.

It’s been very cold here in Chicago, so maybe it’s due to that…weather wise it’s supposed to warm up a little this weekend, so maybe that will help. But assuming it’s not just the cold, any thoughts on what it might be?

I believe that car has a safety feature that prevents you from shifting out of park unless your brake pedal is depressed. The brake switch activates a relay that “unlocks” your shifter linkage. You’re probably hearing that relay, and yes, it’s probably because of the recent arctic conditions.

Thanks for your thoughts. It was in the high 50s over the weekend and the click is still audible, but a little softer. Basically, we’ve agreed that if it starts to become at all hard to shift out of park, the car’s going in to the mechanic.

Also, any thoughts on what sounds like a “sticky” fan? We noticed the past few days that when the fan for the heat is on the second lowest position, we hear a whirring type sound. When we shift the position to a higher strength of fan, it goes away. Very strange…we had a lot of rain as part of our big warm up here and it makes me wonder if it’s just due to moisture overall or what.