Owners manual/quality

how can I get an owners manual for a 2001 celica Gt and did I make a mistake buying a used one with 141000 mi. on it? Already found out it is leaking oil but can’t find where. Pd. $7500. I’m told you can’t go wrong with Toyota.

With 141,000 miles on it, it could be a great car or it could be a problem. It all depends on how the prior owner(s) maintained it.

A Google search should turn up a source for the owner’s manual.

The lack of a owner’s manual bothers me more than the oil leak. I would be looking for a local INDEPENDENT (not a dealer or a chain) to take a look and give you a report. BTW Not taking it to the mechanic BEFORE you paid was your only error so far. The good news is most Toyota owners seem to take good car of their cars.

Check with your friends, neighbors, relatives co-workers etc for that mechanic.

Good Luck.

You bought a 10 year old car, even Toyota’s show their age. Did you have a mechanic inspect the car prior to your purchase?

An oil leak isn’t usually that hard to trace. 1st get the car on a lift and check the seals around the oil filter and oil drain plug. Then look higher at around the valve covers. If the oil is dripping under the car find the wet spots on the frame and move forward and upward and track the wet oil residue.

Obvious source for manual would be at dealership.

There are websites for companies that sell owners’ manuals. Google is your friend.

How much oil is it leaking? Turbo has given you good advice, but it’s also possible that even after all that you’ll leak some oil. On tired high-mileage engines blowby can pressurize the crankcase and force oil past tired old seals. A PCV valve is a good idea to check if you have one too (my '91 Camry did not have one). A stuck PCV can also cause excessive crankcase pressures to build up.

Remember that cars do not dies because of oil leaking…they die because the level is not monitored and drops too low for the pickup tube to draw the oil, starving the engine of its lifeblood. Kudos for monitoring yours. Keep up the good work.

“I’m told you can’t go wrong with Toyota.” By Whom ? Where Have You Been ?


By just about everyone who knows anything about cars, especially from 2001, when the American makers were still making crap, and they admit they were making crap. Next question? :wink:

As for the oil leak, it’s a Celica GT with almost 150k on it. The GT is important. In the used car market, it should stand for “Got Thrashed.” People usually don’t buy the faster version of a car unless they intend to drive it fast, which means it probably got beat on.

Either have a mechanic do this, or do it yourself: There’s an ultraviolet dye that you can put in your oil. Do that, drive it around for a couple hundred miles, and then shine a blacklight all over the engine at night. There will be a glowing trail where the oil is leaking from.

"By just about everyone who knows anything about cars, especially from 2001, when the American makers were still making crap, and they admit they were making crap. Next question? :wink: "

I have a 1998 Buick Regal with 13,000 miles and it’s been great. I also have a 2003 Olds Silhouette and it’s been great, too.

Well, you were told wrong so don’t listen to whoever told you this again. Toyotas break just like everything else.
The only difference is the misguided perception that having a Toyota or Honda badge on the rear end of the car means all is well, forever.

For every single complaint about a domestic vehicle there is an opposing complaint about an Asian badged vehicle. A job working around them in the real world will provide a different insight as compared to surveys, polls, and internet BS circulation.

In this case the OP bought a 10 year old vehicle with 140k+ miles on it that may or may not have been beaten into the pavement; and overpaid for it at that.
If the OP had been referring to a 10 year old Chevy Impala with 140k+ miles on it and asked the same question the response would be…?

Depends. Was it the SS or the regular Impala. If it was the SS I’d say the same thing - - You got the fast version of the car. That means it was probably beat on.

As for reliability, are you saying that all of the statistics including CR ratings are a lie?

I’m not one of those who runs around saying Hondas/Toyotas never break, and I don’t think either is being built to the quality standards they once were, but 10 and even moreso 20 years ago they were lightyears ahead of the rest as far as reliability goes. Yes, they still broke, but they didn’t do it nearly as often.

There is not a car on the road, ten years old, 140K miles, that is worth more than five grand, Benz’s included.

People often PAY more than that, but, like you, they will only do it once…I’m talking about daily drivers, not collector cars locked away in garages…

JT, Every American Car I’ve Had (Several GM And Chrysler) Before And After 2001 Have Been Great (And Still Are), Much better Than The Impression One Gets From Comments Generally Deposited Here.


Shadowfax, Do You Know Where CR’s Reliability Ratings Come From (Not The New Car Evaluations) ? I Have Subscribed To CR Continuously For At Least 4 Decades. I Use It To Select Coffee Makers, Vacuum Cleaners, Dishwasher Detergent, Etcetera, But Not Cars.

I find their product recommendations to be very good, but far, far from reality when comes to car reliability, over and over again. But where are they getting the info they pass along ? I know. Do you ? Hint: It’s not actually testing or scientific evaluation.

The products I buy from their information are actually scientifically, exhaustively lab tested. I will say though that the new car evaluations (no reliability info) is actually helpful.

Oh well, I get great deals on slightly used American cars thanks to the Asian Car Myth and misperceptions pertaining to Detroit Iron.



After 8yrs/150,000 miles the chance of serious problems go way up. Not saying all have them but the likely hood is way up there. Sometimes car owners(esp Asian brands) call these things maintenance.

You made a mistake in not looking at typical prices paid before purchase.

There are websites like edmunds.com that show average prices paid and KBB.com show asking not selling prices.

You overpaid. Have you tried returning to the seller (if dealer) since they did well in the sale to say the least. An oil leak can be major or minor.

Smenuchak, Are You Still Here ?

Help us out. You say, " Already found out it is leaking oil but can’t find where."

Please explain the evidence of the leak. Are there a couple drips under the car or a little / large puddle ?

Can you see what part of the car or engine the drips fall from (although possibly / probably not the source) ?

Is there no evidence of a “leak” , but the oil level keeps falling ?

Have you changed the oil and actually monitored the oil loss / consumption ? Does it use a quart in 500 miles, a half quart in 2,000 miles ? Please describe.

Any additional information will help.

You could have buyer’s remorse and this could be a fairly minor issue. A nine or ten year old car with 141,000 miles on it for $7,500 will no doubt have some idiosyncrasies. At any rate, let’s see if together, we can figure it out.

Talk to us, please.


The next time you buy a car, take it to a mechanic for a pre-purchase inspection.

If the car has no manual, there’s a good chance it’s way behind on scheduled maintenance.

Do you really believe every single ten-year-old Toyota is worth buying?

CSA, won’t we ever learn?

BTW, I wasn’t happy with the 3 Ford products I’ve owned. The last one was a 1998, but I do understand why those who haven’t had success long ago still avoid brands despite their more recent stellar performance. I’ve owned a few other GM cars, and so did my Mom and Dad. They have always been reliable performers since the first one (1955 Chevy 210 sedan).

It’s impossible to scientifically test for reliability unless you’re testing a 5-10 year old car, at which point the information isn’t all that useful since people are shopping for the new car.

The best CR and anyone else can do is to project reliability based on past performance and current engineering.

Past performance isn’t that great. They have twice now, once in the 90’s and once just recently, run ad campaigns that basically said “Uh, sorry for building such crappy cars before. . .Buy another one and we won’t do it again.” You don’t release statements like that if you’re building the best cars out there.

Indications are that current GMs are much better than previous ones. But no one can say that for sure until we find out whether or not they tend to fall apart over the next decade.

At any rate, the OP was discussing a 10 year old car, not a current car, and so today’s reliability numbers are most likely not going to be relevant.