Now that the boneheads have overfilled my oil


#1

My 1-year-old RAV4 has 14,300 miles on it. I had the oil changed at a Toyota dealership last Friday. Yesterday, I noticed a huge plume of smoke behind me as I accelerated away from a stoplight. I drove just enough to get home, but all told I have driven 140 miles since the oil change (did not notice anything wrong previously). I had the car towed in to a different dealer who examined it and confirmed it was waaaay overfilled. They plan to drain it, clean the intake, and document the facts.
My question is, what parts are likely to be affected in the future? I am uncomfortable knowing that the catalytic converter, oxygen sensor, and other parts might break down in the future when there will be so much more potential for the dealership at fault to weasel out on me. Plus it’s not like Toyota has such a great warranty to begin with (36K miles is nothing these days, seriously, what are they thinking with that!) so I’m not protected for very long.


#2

Do you have a manual transmission, if so I would be concerned that they drained the oil from it instead of the engine. If you have an automatic, I don’t think you will have to worry as I don’t think you would have been able to leave the shop. However, if you have an automatic with a dipstick, I would check it anyway.

I don’t know why the second dealer would clean the intake. The smoke was probably oil accumulation on top of the head and leaking past the valve guides or splash oiling under the pistons getting pumped up into the combustion chamber by the rings.

Since this is well documented, if you have an early cat failure, you will have something to hold over Toyota, but remember, the cat is warranteed far longer than 36k miles.


#3

First , prove where the plum of smoke came from.
If it was just leaking onto the hot exhaust…or
If it was acually ingested , burned in the cylinders , and expelled through the exhaust sytem.

If it was just burn off from a leak than a good cleaning should be the end of it.
You’d worry about the cat only if the oil was burned THROUGH the cat.


#4

Keith made a good point…

Not only is there a problem with them over-filling…but they might have drained the wrong thing…It happens.


#5

Yes, it’s an automatic. So I doubt they drained the trans by mistake! But I will check anyway.
Search me why the 2nd dealer cleaned the intake, that’s what they said.
How would I prove where the smoke came from? Wouldn’t the smoke-on-hard-acceleration be a big clue? It did hesitate, the rpm’s went up, then it belched out the smoke. I’m NO mechanic but that would seem like the action of it going through the cat.


#6

"The smoke was probably oil accumulation on top of the head and leaking past the valve guides or splash oiling under the pistons getting pumped up into the combustion chamber by the rings.“
That’s what I’m worried about. What other parts might be affected by that kind of oil pressure? The oil dipstick was 4” above the full mark as documented by the 2nd dealer. That’s a LOT of pressure. I’m surprised the idiot light didn’t come on.


#7

“Plus it’s not like Toyota has such a great warranty to begin with (36K miles is nothing these days, seriously, what are they thinking with that!) so I’m not protected for very long.”

What are they thinking ? They don’t buy cars, they sell cars. They’re thinking profit.
What were you thinking ?

:wink:

CSA


#8

From my experience…companies that have offered LONG warranties are because their vehicle is so unreliable that they need to warranty it longer so people will buy it.

Let’s start with the 70’s classic…the Chevy Vega…That car will go down in history as one of the MOST unreliable vehicles ever made…After 3 years of production…GM started offering a 50k mile warranty which was almost unheard of for the time (most were offering 12mo/12k miles)

Then in the 80’s…Chryco came out with a 36mo/36,000 mile warranty. Again their cars at the time were EXTREMELY unreliable compared to other vehicles at the time.


#9

I’d also be keeping an eye on gaskets and seals (watching for oil leaks) that may have been damaged from the excess oil pressure.


#10

You could ask Toyota for a free extended warranty but that is a real stretch. I know folks who have done this with empty oil from dealer.


#11

“From my experience…companies that have offered LONG warranties are because their vehicle is so unreliable that they need to warranty it longer so people will buy it.”

That’s it ! So, A Poor warranty is a good thing. Got it ! Next time I shop for a car I’ll look for the worst warranty I can find. That way I’ll know I won’t have anything to worry about.

That is the missing piece in the Asian Car Myth that I needed to complete it. Do you know how many people don’t know this and are being mislead by manufacturer’s who stand behind their products ? Right on, right on, right on ! Wow !

I keep on buying these vehicles that are “so unreliable” that I don’t make any warranty claims. Go figure.

:wink:
CSA


#12

@CSA there is not poor warranty on Toyota 3yr/36k bumper to bumper and Honda, compared to GM, Ford or Chrysler. They all have the SAME exact warranty so your point is mute.

Don’t be a sheep and get tricked by the 100k warranty (GM) or Chrysler. It sounds wonderful and people assume bumper to bumper. But in actually its limited to 5yrs and powertrain. Yes better protection a bit if you drive >12k miles per year but pure trickery.

btw I don’t think US vs Imported vehicles are better worst. Both sides have their duds. I just find it ironic for those folks who feel great buying a US brand and end up with a Mexican built product. On the flip side they buy a Toyota or Honda built by US autoworkers and more US content in part than domestic.

Also finally Ford(Focus/Fiesta) and GM(Cruze) finally make great offerings in the smaller car market. Guess what the design was imported from their European engineers/product and a bit Japanese(Focus/Mazda).

Its all perception and whats best is what you like.


#13

@andrew_j: Tricked ? Who’s Tricked ?
I Wasn’t Tricked When I Bought My Wife’s Year-Old Certified Used (10,000 Miles) GM Car Last Fall. It Came With 100,000 Mile / 5 Year Powertrain Warranty And 48,000 Mile / 48 Month Bumper-To-Bumper Warranty.

Granted, the warranty runs from in-service date, but my wife and I each drive over 30,000 miles (each) per year, so we’ll max out on miles long before months.

There’s no trick. It’s one darn good warranty. It was definitely one reason I purchased this car. I got such a great price on the car that there’s no way I paid for it.

You wouldn’t accept the additional warranty on your car ? When told of the warranty coverage, you’d say, “You can’t trick me. Just give me a 36/36 bumper-to bumper warranty and keep the rest !” (?)

I guess you might because as one person has pointed out a great warranty is proof of an inferior product. Right.

"They all have the SAME exact warranty so your point is mute."
Are you kidding me ?

:wink:
CSA


#14

I keep on buying these vehicles that are “so unreliable” that I don’t make any warranty claims. Go figure.

Gee I’ve been doing that since I got rid of my GMC S-15…

Now try understanding what I actually said.


#15

From my experience…companies that have offered LONG warranties are because their vehicle is so unreliable that they need to warranty it longer so people will buy it.

And with a straight face you posted that?

That subtle high pitched whine off in the distance is the sound of the Brothers Grimm rotating at turbine speed in their graves.


#16

Yup…that Chevy Vega with the LONGEST warranty at the time…was by far the most reliable vehicle in the world…YUP…

And the Chryco K-Car…WOW…what a car…7yr/70k miles…so reliable…you can’t even find one today…YUP…So reliable…


#17

GM did 48/48 warranty as a gimmick to sell cars. Its now reverted back to 3yr/36 miles which is business as usual.

Instead of a rebate you get a warranty. A game the domestic makers mainly play. Given they sell decent offering now and Japan production is slow they got rid of these items so they can do something properly, make money and hopefully grow.


#18

Yup…it’s a gimmick…always has been a gimmick…If it wasn’t…then according to OK…Ford should have a 500k mile warranty because they make the best cars ever made…But they don’t…Hyundai and Chryco have the best warranties out there…The difference in warranty from one manufacturer means very little…When Yugo was introduced to the US it had one of the best warranties around…does that mean it’s the best made??? Anyone who thinks the answer is yes knows NOTHING about cars.


#19

Then you would love the mid/late 80s Subaru 1 year/1,000,000 miles factory warranty.
So you agree that based on that warranty mileage figure Subaru is a blight on the face of humanity that should have never been allowed to see the light of day?

For what it’s worth, I was working for a multi-line dealer who became one of the first Yugo dealers around and if you think their warranty was one of the best around you better think again.

Unless their policy has changed there’s something you should know about Subaru warranty. (Yes, I pick on them because they’ve proven themselves time and again to be a pack of weasels.)
Every car (not just Subaru ) rolls off the line with a budgeted amount for warranty work. This figure is generally low (used to be mid 3 figures) and many things that a customer thinks is repaired under warranty is not. It’s free of charge to the car owner but the mechanic gets hosed and the customer never knows about it.

Again, and unless the policy has changed, Subaru used to have a 1000 mile adjustment period. This means if your new Subaru has 8k miles on it and a windshield wiper nut comes loose, the passenger front door glass is leaking rain water, and the rear hatch is out of adjustment and also leaking that the customer should pay for it UNLESS there’s a factory defect in a part. Loose nuts, body tweaks, glass and door adjustments, etc are not covered. A dirty little secret you might say.


#20

I had 2 K cars and a Plymouth Caravelle. Slow, yes, unreliable,no , Never had anything but maintenance with any of them.
Wait, I take that back, one had a radio die and another one had a cooling fan relay go bad.
They were all great in the snow too.