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Check Engine Light, Ignition Coil


osetleo
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First of all I would like to thank everyone taking time to share their experiences on this site. It is very helpful when there is a problem. I will add my 2 cents to the issue of troubleshooting "Check Engine" light.

On Monday my wife's RX300 (99) with 67K had a blinking "Check Engine" light. The engine was not stable and the car behaved like carrying a ton or two of load. I rented the Scanner (apperantly they don't scan it for your at AutoZone in the Bay area) and is showed the following trouble codes:PO300, PO302, PO303, PO303, P1411. I recorded these codes, erased the car computer memory and drove the car until the "Check Engine" light start blinking again. (By the way, it was not blinking immediately as I erazed all trouble codes). I immediately stopped and checked codes again: PO303. I repeated it couple of times, I guess I was not happy with the result-with my luck it was the toughest cylinder to reach.

At that point I decided that it is most likely an Ignition Coil. I put not more than 10% on the spark plug (with 67K on the care). The iridium plugs (I agree with Lenore-use only those) stay for a long-long time. I bought one Ignition Coil at Lexus (it was cheaper by $10) than in any of 6 Toyota dealership in our area.

During the installation of the coil I removed only the top Lexus cover, cruise control bracket and a venting tube on the left side (from the top of the back valve cover). I also initially practiced on the front cylinders to remove the connector and check the plug. I used 2 small screwdrives to remove the 3rd cylinder connector and 10mm small head on the ignition coil bolt.

I am pretty tall guy (6-5) and have big hands-played for 10 years basketball when I was young-but I was able to get my left hand in that small opening. If I would have to change the spark plug on the back, I would use the swivel socket to wrench adapter with one or two small extensions-that will make the job easier than using straight extensions.

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First of all I would like to thank everyone taking time to share their experiences on this site. It is very helpful when there is a problem. I will add my 2 cents to the issue of troubleshooting "Check Engine" light.

On Monday my wife's RX300 (99) with 67K had a blinking "Check Engine" light. The engine was not stable and the car behaved like carrying a ton or two of load. I rented the Scanner (apperantly they don't scan it for your at AutoZone in the Bay area) and is showed the following trouble codes:PO300, PO302, PO303, PO303, P1411. I recorded these codes, erased the car computer memory and drove the car until the "Check Engine" light start blinking again. (By the way, it was not blinking immediately as I erazed all trouble codes). I immediately stopped and checked codes again: PO303. I repeated it couple of times, I guess I was not happy with the result-with my luck it was the toughest cylinder to reach.

At that point I decided that it is most likely an Ignition Coil. I put not more than 10% on the spark plug (with 67K on the care). The iridium plugs (I agree with Lenore-use only those) stay for a long-long time. I bought one Ignition Coil at Lexus (it was cheaper by $10) than in any of 6 Toyota dealership in our area.

During the installation of the coil I removed only the top Lexus cover, cruise control bracket and a venting tube on the left side (from the top of the back valve cover). I also initially practiced on the front cylinders to remove the connector and check the plug. I used 2 small screwdrives to remove the 3rd cylinder connector and 10mm small head on the ignition coil bolt.

I am pretty tall guy (6-5) and have big hands-played for 10 years basketball when I was young-but I was able to get my left hand in that small opening. If I would have to change the spark plug on the back, I would use the swivel socket to wrench adapter with one or two small extensions-that will make the job easier than using straight extensions.

So is it fixed?

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Yes it is fixed, my wife is driving it today after the retorical question:" Are you sure it is safe for me to drive? Are you absolutely sure?"

First of all I would like to thank everyone taking time to share their experiences on this site. It is very helpful when there is a problem. I will add my 2 cents to the issue of troubleshooting "Check Engine" light.

On Monday my wife's RX300 (99) with 67K had a blinking "Check Engine" light. The engine was not stable and the car behaved like carrying a ton or two of load. I rented the Scanner (apperantly they don't scan it for your at AutoZone in the Bay area) and is showed the following trouble codes:PO300, PO302, PO303, PO303, P1411. I recorded these codes, erased the car computer memory and drove the car until the "Check Engine" light start blinking again. (By the way, it was not blinking immediately as I erazed all trouble codes). I immediately stopped and checked codes again: PO303. I repeated it couple of times, I guess I was not happy with the result-with my luck it was the toughest cylinder to reach.

At that point I decided that it is most likely an Ignition Coil. I put not more than 10% on the spark plug (with 67K on the care). The iridium plugs (I agree with Lenore-use only those) stay for a long-long time. I bought one Ignition Coil at Lexus (it was cheaper by $10) than in any of 6 Toyota dealership in our area.

During the installation of the coil I removed only the top Lexus cover, cruise control bracket and a venting tube on the left side (from the top of the back valve cover). I also initially practiced on the front cylinders to remove the connector and check the plug. I used 2 small screwdrives to remove the 3rd cylinder connector and 10mm small head on the ignition coil bolt.

I am pretty tall guy (6-5) and have big hands-played for 10 years basketball when I was young-but I was able to get my left hand in that small opening. If I would have to change the spark plug on the back, I would use the swivel socket to wrench adapter with one or two small extensions-that will make the job easier than using straight extensions.

So is it fixed?

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I had the same problem about a month ago (for me, it was the 5th cylinder). The local repair shop wanted to charge me about $350 for part + labor in addition to the initial $80 for diagnosing the problem. Luckily, a mechanic friend of mine had the original part and he came by to install it for me. So far so good.

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Ahhhhhhhhhh! You *BLEEP*s cursed me!!!!! OK not really but thats the first thing I thought this evening when I got into my RX, started it up and I felt the distinctive, lope-a-dope of a vehicle trying its best to run on five cylinders. Luckily (or unluckily) I've been though this before and I was prepared. Code reader, spare coil, tools. I had it changed out in 10 minutes. Of course I definitely was lucky that it was number 4, dead center in front. If it had been an odd number I'd have been screwed to tune of an hour and a half minimum. Anyhow, just had to rant, oh the irony!!!!!!!

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Boy, wish I could repair my car like you guys do! I'm a slave to the dealership. Just had my #3 replaced on Thursday, along with six spark plugs (which they said all had been damaged when the coil went out). Labor was over $200 for this! Today, the check engine light is on again (remaining solid - not blinking) and it's my 02 sensor (which was replaced 2 years ago).

This 2000 RX is turning into our own little money pit - have a new engine and transmission (replaced in 07) and here 08 starts off with a bang!

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Boy, wish I could repair my car like you guys do! I'm a slave to the dealership. Just had my #3 replaced on Thursday, along with six spark plugs (which they said all had been damaged when the coil went out). Labor was over $200 for this! Today, the check engine light is on again (remaining solid - not blinking) and it's my 02 sensor (which was replaced 2 years ago).

This 2000 RX is turning into our own little money pit - have a new engine and transmission (replaced in 07) and here 08 starts off with a bang!

Does anyone know how one bad coil (#3 in this case) can ruin all 6 sparkplugs?

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Boy, wish I could repair my car like you guys do! I'm a slave to the dealership. Just had my #3 replaced on Thursday, along with six spark plugs (which they said all had been damaged when the coil went out). Labor was over $200 for this! Today, the check engine light is on again (remaining solid - not blinking) and it's my 02 sensor (which was replaced 2 years ago).

This 2000 RX is turning into our own little money pit - have a new engine and transmission (replaced in 07) and here 08 starts off with a bang!

Does anyone know how one bad coil (#3 in this case) can ruin all 6 sparkplugs?

To my knowledge ( and I'm not a professional mechanic) this would be very difficult to do in these vehicles. I've had three coils go out on me now and I've never replaced a spark plug because of it. In each of the times I've replaced a coil never once did I change the plug. I suppose if you drove it extensively with a coil out (5 cylinders) there's the possibility of doing some damage but 5-10 miles or so I'd say probably not.

Also, changing one of these coils, (provided its #2,4 or 6) is easier and takes less time than an oil change. Seriously all it entails is unbolting the old coil, un-clipping the coil leads, pulling out the coil, replacing it with a new one and re-clipping and re-bolting it in place. The 2,4,6 plugs/coils are right there in front. Now the back three, man-o-man thats a different story-

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Boy, wish I could repair my car like you guys do! I'm a slave to the dealership. Just had my #3 replaced on Thursday, along with six spark plugs (which they said all had been damaged when the coil went out). Labor was over $200 for this! Today, the check engine light is on again (remaining solid - not blinking) and it's my 02 sensor (which was replaced 2 years ago).

This 2000 RX is turning into our own little money pit - have a new engine and transmission (replaced in 07) and here 08 starts off with a bang!

Does anyone know how one bad coil (#3 in this case) can ruin all 6 sparkplugs?

To my knowledge ( and I'm not a professional mechanic) this would be very difficult to do in these vehicles. I've had three coils go out on me now and I've never replaced a spark plug because of it. In each of the times I've replaced a coil never once did I change the plug. I suppose if you drove it extensively with a coil out (5 cylinders) there's the possibility of doing some damage but 5-10 miles or so I'd say probably not.

Also, changing one of these coils, (provided its #2,4 or 6) is easier and takes less time than an oil change. Seriously all it entails is unbolting the old coil, un-clipping the coil leads, pulling out the coil, replacing it with a new one and re-clipping and re-bolting it in place. The 2,4,6 plugs/coils are right there in front. Now the back three, man-o-man thats a different story-

That's what I thought. So, we have yet one more case of a Lexus dealership lying to a customer. Really makes me sad.

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  • 2 months later...

Hi everyone,

OK I just went through the same problem.. My Check engine light came on. Ran the OBDII tester and it told me the cylinders were misfiring. I had to drive about 70 miles to get home in the middle of the night. I was just hoping I would not damage my car? I could not leave it where I was. So today I was reading about it and figureed I would pick up a couple of Ignition coils and replace them in the front to see if that took care of it.

This is where I have my current problem. I Bought the coil and it looks exactly like the old ones. Even has the Toyota logos and stuff. I pulled one out and went to put in the new one and it would not fit? The old one came out super easy. I thought maybe because it was new it just was a snug fit? But I tried and tried to twist and push it it and it would not go. It seems like it is only about 1mm fatter than the old one. Everything else is identical and the parts store said this was the correct part.

Also, when IO pull all of the old ones out they all look as new as the day the car got off the assembly line. Would their be something visible to show it is faulty? Or not?

So, anyone have thoughts on this? Why would it not fit? Or is it just a snug "new" fit and needs to be worked in with more elbow grease? Or?

Thanks

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Boy, wish I could repair my car like you guys do! I'm a slave to the dealership. Just had my #3 replaced on Thursday, along with six spark plugs (which they said all had been damaged when the coil went out). Labor was over $200 for this! Today, the check engine light is on again (remaining solid - not blinking) and it's my 02 sensor (which was replaced 2 years ago).

This 2000 RX is turning into our own little money pit - have a new engine and transmission (replaced in 07) and here 08 starts off with a bang!

RXE- Did they give you the snake oil with that? I'm not sure where it would go, but they charged you for it, you should have gotten it. I would have expected that from a shop in the alley, but not from Lexus. That's a new low in flimflamery. You know where not to go back to. :o

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Iv'e got a 2000 Rx and I'm 99% certain its exactly the same engine so with that I'll tell you that the coil part # that I just used was 90080-19016. If you've got those coils then they're the right ones. They look identical to the previous versions, just the number is different. I've replaced all 6 of mine in the last 2 or so years, just doing the final 3 all at once about a month ago. The last three I needed to do were 1 & 3 in the back and 2 in the front. It is possible to replace all of these coils without removing the TB or any other components. Not easy mind you , but possible.

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Boy, wish I could repair my car like you guys do! I'm a slave to the dealership. Just had my #3 replaced on Thursday, along with six spark plugs (which they said all had been damaged when the coil went out). Labor was over $200 for this! Today, the check engine light is on again (remaining solid - not blinking) and it's my 02 sensor (which was replaced 2 years ago).

This 2000 RX is turning into our own little money pit - have a new engine and transmission (replaced in 07) and here 08 starts off with a bang!

The coil going bad could have caused extreme missfires which put a load on the O2...But I doubt that it would destroy the plugs other than maybe some high corrosion on the spring that the coil uses to contact the plug electrode. That could have caused the original problem of the coil pack dying because of high resistance or arcing.....

I highly suggest the use of thermoelectric grease between the coil and the plug to decrease corrosion and arcing due to moisture.

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I just did the plugs on my RX330 at 138,000 miles. I sure hope my coils don't go out. How do you know which cylinder is bad? Does the code tell you?

Generally yes, on the RX300 it usually says 0304 (cyl4) 0303 (cyl3) etc... I'm guessing in an RX 330 you may have evolved past bad coils though. At least I haven't heard of coil problems in the 330/350's

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