Cost of replacing a 99 camry computer


#1

My 99 Camry recently needed its oxygen sensor replaced. Evidently, replacing the oxygen sensor on this model requires the computer to also be replaced as per a TSB. Unfortunately, I am way out of warranty and the repair given to me by a dealership was $1400+. Is this an accurate quote and can non dealership mechanic’s replace the computer?


#2

Get another opinion from an independent mechanic. This sounds fishy to me.


#3

Does Your Car Have “California Emissions”? Any Codes?

From what I can tell cars equipped for that and also setting code PO1133 (Air Fuel Ratio Sensor Slow Response) can sometimes be repaired with an “improved” A/F (Air Fuel Ratio Sensor). Should that not work, then it’s brain surgery (computer).


#4

Does the car drive OK?? That’s all it has to do, right? Is the CEL on? Emissions test problems? What?


#5

Yes, as CSA states, there is a Toyota Technical Service Bulletin titled: M.I.L. “ON” P1133, dated April 20, 2001. Your mechanic should read this TSB. It says that IF the oxygen sensor (A/F sensor) has a part number showing its manufacture as being after August 31, 1999, and there is a trouble code P1133, to replace the ECM (engine computer) with one modified from the current ECM.
That date of manufacture is, of course, AFTER your car was manufactured, and, thus, would have been a replacement after the car was sold. I doubt that the A/F sensor in your car has ever been changed; so, replacing the A/F sensor (with one made after August 31, 1999) will probably fix your car.
It’s so easy for a dealer’s service adviser to “misread” a TSB, methinks.


#6

The check engine light is on but the car drives fine. This needs to be fixed because the car will fail emissions inspection if it is not repaired. My mechanic said that computers need to be programmed by dealerships so be may not be able to do it. Anyone know of this is true? Or is it possible to get a pre programmed computer?


#7

That’s a good one from hellokit . They would have been making 2000 models by then. There is usually a date of manufacture sticker somewhere on the car, like in a doorway. The VIN should be there too.


#8

Thanks for that hellokit! Here is more to the story: my mechanic went ahead and replaced the A/F sensor, but the check engine light came back on. This led him to that bulletin, which led me to the dealership that let me know the ECM needs to be replaced.

So it seems that I need a new ECM now - I was quoted a price of $1432, does this sound right?


#9

Too Bad The Story Didn’t Start Here. We’ve Reinvented The Wheel.

$1432 sounds about right on a three year-old car.

On a ten year old car, I’d have the auto recyclers find me a brain of the correct part number for my vehicle, from an old Toyota that had a former brain transplant.
The yards near me would guarantee the part or my money back.


#10

Thank you so much for all of your help. I’ll see what I can find thus far or if this might be the end of my Camry’s life.


#11

The TSB Has A List Of ECMs And Their Replacement Part Numbers.
There’s a few for automatics and a few for manuals. I’m guessing that there are many out there, having been replaced while under factory warranty.

Installing it shouldn’t be rocket science, a buddy could help, and for less than a hundred bucks or so, you could be back to normal. You can do this. I bought an $800 BCM (body control module) for $30.


#12

Well, that is quite promising. I’ll look around to see what I can find - hopefully I will be able to make this repair quick and painless. Thanks again for all your help