Blogs Car Info Our Show Deals Mechanics Files Vehicle Donation

Toyota venza 2012 XLE steering issues wile braking

Hello, I just bought a new to me Toyota Venza 2012 XLE. It came with winter tires. The car is originally from Canada. I am in Oregon with lots of rain. The car will veer to the right or left when braking. The dealer put brakes on all four wheels and turned the drums. That did not alleviate the issue at all. I took the mechanic for a drive in the car and he said it was the road cap. I also had to drive, then suddenly put on the brakes to try and mimic what was occurring while I was driving during my morning commute and he said I should not drive that way. I left with the feelings he was looking at me like an idiot. However, I won’t drive the car on the freeway. It is not safe. The bearings, hoses, calipers, area all said to be good.

The service representative said it might be the tires. I have 10" tires? Any advice, insights, etc.? I am having another mechanic look at it today to verify all is OK with the vehicle. He has been my trusted mechanic for 10 years. I just bought the car 10 days ago and it came with a 90 day 3K mile warranty.

Winter tires won’t cause a vehicle to veer while braking.

You don’t say if the front-end alignment has been checked.

If it hasn’t, that’s where I’d start.


1 Like

Winter is over so replace tires now. 10 inch tires ? On the side of tire it should read something like
235 45 18 or close to those numbers.

Years ago, I put a set of dedicated snow tires on my 83 Mustang GT. If I recall the snow tires had very poor traction in any kind of rain.

I suggest you google the brand and model of your winter tires to determine if wet performance is an issue.


the alignment has been checked as well

I run winter tires on my Nissan pickup all-year-round.

And not once has it veered while braking. Rain or shine.


Yeah, that has me mystified as well…

Hello, I did not get a chance to check the actual size of the tire. The information (10") was mentioned by the service rep…
The service rep did say the size of tire was what came on the car originally, so the size was fine.

My husband took the car to 2 different people today; 1) our regular mechanic 2) a reputable tire store in our area. Both places said the calipers needed to be replaced. Our mechanic said the rotors as well needed to be replaced. He said the brake pads that were put on the car were very cheap pads and the turning of the drum was done poorly. Neither felt the suspension or axle were an issue. They both said the tires were not the issue. The tire store said they would not know if the rotors needed to be replaced until they got in and did the work. The tire store did a visual exam of the car. The mechanic drove the car and experienced what my husband and I experience while driving.

Is there anything else I should check

What is a road cap?

I think they mean road crown.

I’d say that you should wait to see if the brake work fixes the problem. It probably will.

You do plan to put on your all-season (or summer) tires soon, I hope. You don’t want to run winter tires in the summer, as they’ll wear out quickly due to the softer compound. They’re often noisier as well.

car is from Canada. U live in Oregon. Did u buy venza from dealer in Oregon? U say dealer did brake job. And ur mechanic says dealer used cheap pads? And mechanic says rotors should be replaced and dealer did not think so?

1 Like

If I had that problem on my Corolla, and the normal diagnostic stuff didn’t work and the car felt unsafe to drive at freeway speed, I’d probably just bite the bullet and replace the pad/rotors/shoes/drums all around. If the calipers or wheel cylinders looked iffy, I’d replace those too. Then bleed all the old brake fluid out and replace with fresh stuff. While doing all that I’d also inspect and replace any suspension parts that tested bad or looked worn, followed by a 4 wheel alignment. I’d use all oem parts.

Some right/left drifting towards the downhill direction during braking on roads with a steep crown is normal, but not the amount you seem to be reporting.

I’m presuming your ABS and BRAKE dash lights are working normally, right? Unlit during driving?


Yes, as far as I know all the lights are working on the vehicle. I have
only had it 10 days. It is back in the shop. They are replacing the rotors.
If that does not fix it, then they are replacing the calipers. At that
time, I believe, all the parts you mentioned will be replaced. They did say
it could possible be the anti lock braking system. The front end has been
inspected by 3 different people and all said the parts looked good.

The car has a 90 day, 3K mile warranty so the dealer is doing the work. The
mechanic test rove the care and did tell the service rep he felt
"vibrating" when he put the brakes on. He rechecked the rotors and said
there was some unevenness to them. They are replacing them Monday. They are
giving me a loaner car as well. They seem to be responsive to my concerns
and willing to find an answer I don’t think the mechanic felt what I feel
while I drive. He drove the car this morning on dry ground. The veering is
definitely worse in wet roads.

Thank you for your time and thoughts. I appreciate everyone’s contribution

The dealer might make you a decent price on all season tires because while the brakes sound like a problem I still think the tires make the problem worse.

so dealer did put cheap pads on. can you ask dealer what grade of pads they put on?
tires are 245/55/19. sounds like $1000 for a new set. 19-20" rims sure look nice.

The dealer said they put Toyota factory pads on the car. We did ask. What I don’t know is if there are different grades of factory pads. The $1000 you mentioned, what brand of tires? I have not begun to research tires yet.

But ride lousy.
When I bought a 2011 Venza last year, it came with 20" wheels. Using Craigslist, I found a Venza owner with 19" wheels to trade with me, even up.
His car was red, mine white. My 6-spoke, 20" wheels looked jazzier on his red car. His 10-spoke, 19" wheels look classier on my white one. Win-win.
But if I could, I’d have 17" wheels and a wider sidewall.

1 Like

I agree 100%. Very low profile tires are only for style, and you are driving a car with a rougher ride and much more prone to damage from potholes. I would never buy a cay with such tires, if I had any choice at all.

I live in Oregon and the car was brought in from Canada. That is why it could not be certified because someone would have to go to Canada and get the DMV print out (so they say). The dealer has replaced the brake pads and rotors. The car still swerves. They had 2 of their mechanics drive the car and said it did not swerve. My husband and I drove the car today and have started to video tape the car while I am driving to show how the car veers to the right or left on braking. Alignment has been done. 3 mechanics have looked at the suspension and front axle and said they were OK. 2 mechanics said it needed calipers and the dealer said they have tested the calipers and they are fine. I am wondering if it is the ABS. The condition is worse the wetter the streets are. One person I know said the warning lights in the Toyota should go off of it was the ABS. I am very nervous to drive the car. The dealer wont buy it back from me. They would take it in as a trade but I would loose money.