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4 Runner brake failure

I experienced the sudden onset of brake failure when driving home from work . The ABS light came on and stayed on and a loud continuous beeping alarm started sounding, and my brakes became non functional. I was fortunately able to bring my car to a halt without injury to self/ car or others. My 2010 4runner has approx. 83000 miles on it, and a local Toyota Dealership has told me that the ABS sensor needs replacement, along with the rear discs, calipers and brakes, seemingly from a simultaneous failure that the service advisor does not report having seen before. This will cost me approx. 4000 dollars per the Toyota dealership. I wrote a mail to Toyota company and there are no recalls per them, and they will not cover any of this. This is a huge unexpected expense for only a 4-year old car. There is apparently a “part” that costs 2300 dollars. I could take it to another auto-repair shop but I will have to pay for towing and am afraid about using non-toyota parts. Any advice ? Does that amount seem reasonable? Thanks very much in advance for your help.

No, $4000 does not sound reasonable. Get a second opinion from a trusted independent mechanic. If you don’t know of one, check the Mechanics Files section of this website. And do not go to a national brake/muffler chain store.

And why would the rotors need replacement with only 83000 miles of wear on them? Maybe some other components need replacing, but I doubt the rotors (discs) do.

I agree with @jesmed1 . The ABS sensor on your vehicle lists for 170 bucks. None of the other brake parts (calipers/discs/pads) cost $2300. What part do they claim you need for 2300 bucks, and what caused the failure of all of these parts (the sensor, the pads, the rotors, the calipers, AND the mystery $2300 part) at the same time? If they can’t answer that, they’re BSing you and trying to rip you off.

For what it’s worth, the most expensive ABS system part on your truck, from the dealer, lists for less than half of the part they claim costs $2300.

You described a hydraulic brake booster failure but did not list it with the other parts. The hydraulic brake booster is expensive, $2,400.

Brake pads and rotors are wear items that may not be related to the brake failure.

Not sure where you’re looking, but you can get a factory brake booster from a dealership here for $1112.40.

I also don’t know why both rear calipers, pads, AND rotors would wear out in only 4 years.

#13 in the diagram is the pump and accumulator. #1 is the complete assembly, P/N 4705035130, retail price is $2,366.05.

DONOT WRITE THE COMPANY…CALL THEM
By all means, contact customer service / relations at Toyota regional office ASAP. Get a friendly voice with a name on the other end who can advocate for you. They have trained customer advocates who can work with you. The dealer is obligated to do nothing more out of warranty. I have done this three times with Honda and Toyota and have gotten completely satisfactory results with help all three times. Your car may be over miles wise but may not time wise on some parts which is working in your favor. Toyota is RICH through your higher cost of the car. You are expecting good reliability and they can easily afford to help you through a dealer fix or anyone else you choose if you are completely accurate, record everything, congenial and most of all, persistent. Don’t let go and stay at it. Let me repeat, DONOT EXPECT DEALER HELP. You can get better results working through Toyota as a"loyal" customer.

The other question to ask is why the entire hydraulic brake booster (if that is in fact the $2400 part you mentioned) needs replacing. Is it because the brake fluid was contaminated? Then someone needs to test the brake fluid for contamination. Because contaminated fluid will ruin all the brake calipers as well.

Contamination can occur if someone adds the wrong type of fluid to the brake reservoir. Are you the original owner and have you had brake fluid added at any time since you’ve owned the car?

^
Ding, ding, ding…I think we have a winner!

Unfortunately the booster and abs pump are a complete unit. $2400 is the price and they do occasionally fail as was stated above call Toyota customer satisfaction. If you have done all your maintenance with the dealer it helps the rear brakes are more than likely just worn and not related to the booster.

Nhtsa complaint listed below. There were a few others that sounded very similar. The problem is they are listed under incorrect headings.

Complaint - Service Brakes
I WAS MAKING A LEFT TURN AT LOW SPEED AT A TRAFFIC LIGHT. SUDDENLY THE ABS, BRAKE AND TRACTION CONTROL WARNING LIGHTS LIT UP ON THE DASHBOARD. AT THE SAME TIME, A CONTINUOUS, HIGH PITCHED ALARM SOUND WENT OFF. I CAME TO A FULL STOP AT ANOTHER TRAFFIC STOP. AT THAT POINT MY FOOT WAS ON THE BRAKE AND THE BRAKE DEPRESSED TO THE FLOORBOARD. I PLACED THE CAR IN PARK AND PUMPED ON THE BRAKES AND THEY DID PUMP BACK UP. I PARKED THE VEHICLE CLOSE BY AND HAD THE CAR TOWED TO THE NEARBY TOYOTA DEALERSHIP. THEY DIAGNOSED THE PROBLEM AS A FAILED MASTER CYLINDER AND QUOTED ME A PRICE OF $3000 INCLUDING PARTS AND LABOR FOR REPAIRS. BOTH THE DEALERSHIP AND TOYOTA STATED THAT THERE WERE NO TSB’S OR RECALLS CURRENTLY ON THE VEHICLE.

Hello: Thank you all very much for your input. It is very helpful. I called the dealer for details regarding cost/parts and this is the breakdown per his e-mail:

47050-35160 BRAKE ASSYMBLY ACCTUATOR (ABS HYDRAULIC MASTER ASSEMBLY)

PARTS, FLUID, AND BLEED $2776.45 +TAX

47730-34030-84 REAR CALIPER
47730-34030-84 REAR CALIPER
04466-60140 PAD-KIT, DISC BRAKE
04946-60140 SHIM KIT
04947-22050 FITTING KIT
47715-43010 FITTING KIT
CORE CHARGE - 1 CALIPER NON RETURNABLE.
TOTAL $754.56 +TAX

42431-60311 REAR ROTORS x2
TOTAL $306.96 +TAX

Does this seem reasonable?
I will call Toyota today as well. Again, thank you very much for your help.

The prices actually sound fair although I admit they’re high.

With a non-returnable core on one caliper there must be a real issue with the faulty one as non-returnable core means that it’s junk metal and not rebuildable.

Ask Toyota if they will see fit to assist you with a Good Will warranty. These are at the car maker’s discretion and there’s at least a chance they may see fit to go halfsies or something like that.
The worst they can do is say no.

ABS can get expensive. I remember well over 20 odd years ago when an ABS master cylinder failed on a SAAB that it was 2000 dollars; and that was in the early 90s.

ABS failures can indeed prove to be an expensive repair. But ABS makes the car safer. It’s a compromise I guess. Usually when folks here post about a faulty ABS sensor, they mean one of the wheel speed sensors. That’s not a super-expensive fix. In your case it must be a different sensor, part of the main ABS unit. And apparently there’s no way to just replace the sensor, the whole kit and caboodle has to be replaced.

You might could save some money by having this done at an inde shop, provided you have recommendations for a good one in the area that work on Toyotas.

Agree with the others than brake fluid contamination is the possible culprit. It is odd for the rear brakes to fail before the front brakes. Have the front brake pads/rotors ever been replaced on this car? If so, perhaps when that was done somehow the brake fluid got contaminated.

I doubt it’s a contamination issue only because I have seen these units fail for years. I usually see 2 or 3 a year. The cost is the rough part of the repair.

I’m just wondering why the calipers would need replacing too. I can understand the ABS unit failing. But both calipers? That’s what makes me suspicious of contamination.