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tlb
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I've been reading about the sludge problems with the lexus/toyota models. I have a Lexus RX300 with 144,000 miles. It's been serviced regularly and had oil changed like clockwork. But had been noticing it starting to burn about a quart of oil every 3000 miles. then there is some mild engine sputtering and the check engine light comes on. I have the Lexus dealer look at it--they say there is a faulty o-ring that is leaking oil onto the spark plugs and that is what caused the sputtering. Well, after they "fixed" the problem (and $1000 later) I get the car back and now it's burning 2 quarts of oil every 200 miles!!!!--they tell me that there will be engine failure for some unknown reason and that changing the spark plugs made the engine burn the oil more efficiently. sounds like a weird excuse to me. They also tell me that the 1999-2002 models had the problem with oil gelling but that's not what's happening with my car---hhhmmmm---wondering if anyone has had anything similar or advice?? I'm thinking about taking it to an independent mechanic to see if there really is engine oil gelling (sludge) and the dealer just isn't being straight with me???

Thanks,

tlb

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first, what year is your RX? The warranty is 8 years, 120days.... Have an independent pull the front valve cover and see if you have sludge. The other tell tale would be to pull the oil pan and see if the Oil pump pickup screen is clogged. I hope you are in the warranty period....the 2003 was not covered, but should have been. I suspect the lawsuit was initiated in 2002 and Toyota covered just those years and before. My neighbor has a 2003 highlander and it was not covered and he had the dreaded sludge. He is going to pursue it though with toyota. Another thought is to go to another dealership and ask them to check for sludge. Your dealer may indeed be cheating you...

One last note did you get the engine codes when the check engine light came on? If so please post as my neighbor has his codes when he had his Problem... this is what it looked like after he had scraped a coffee can worth of sludge out of it...His engine was toast, ended up rebuilding it. by the way welcome to this site...Lots of money saving tips here always...

post-12820-1236875128_thumb.jpg

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I've been reading about the sludge problems with the lexus/toyota models. I have a Lexus RX300 with 144,000 miles. It's been serviced regularly and had oil changed like clockwork. But had been noticing it starting to burn about a quart of oil every 3000 miles. then there is some mild engine sputtering and the check engine light comes on. I have the Lexus dealer look at it--they say there is a faulty o-ring that is leaking oil onto the spark plugs and that is what caused the sputtering. Well, after they "fixed" the problem (and $1000 later) I get the car back and now it's burning 2 quarts of oil every 200 miles!!!!--they tell me that there will be engine failure for some unknown reason and that changing the spark plugs made the engine burn the oil more efficiently. sounds like a weird excuse to me. They also tell me that the 1999-2002 models had the problem with oil gelling but that's not what's happening with my car---hhhmmmm---wondering if anyone has had anything similar or advice?? I'm thinking about taking it to an independent mechanic to see if there really is engine oil gelling (sludge) and the dealer just isn't being straight with me???

Thanks,

tlb

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first, what year is your RX? The warranty is 8 years, 120days.... Have an independent pull the front valve cover and see if you have sludge. The other tell tale would be to pull the oil pan and see if the Oil pump pickup screen is clogged. I hope you are in the warranty period....the 2003 was not covered, but should have been. I suspect the lawsuit was initiated in 2002 and Toyota covered just those years and before. My neighbor has a 2003 highlander and it was not covered and he had the dreaded sludge. He is going to pursue it though with toyota. Another thought is to go to another dealership and ask them to check for sludge. Your dealer may indeed be cheating you...

One last note did you get the engine codes when the check engine light came on? If so please post as my neighbor has his codes when he had his Problem... this is what it looked like after he had scraped a coffee can worth of sludge out of it...His engine was toast, ended up rebuilding it. by the way welcome to this site...Lots of money saving tips here always...

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first, what year is your RX? The warranty is 8 years, 120days.... Have an independent pull the front valve cover and see if you have sludge. The other tell tale would be to pull the oil pan and see if the Oil pump pickup screen is clogged. I hope you are in the warranty period....the 2003 was not covered, but should have been. I suspect the lawsuit was initiated in 2002 and Toyota covered just those years and before. My neighbor has a 2003 highlander and it was not covered and he had the dreaded sludge. He is going to pursue it though with toyota. Another thought is to go to another dealership and ask them to check for sludge. Your dealer may indeed be cheating you...

One last note did you get the engine codes when the check engine light came on? If so please post as my neighbor has his codes when he had his Problem... this is what it looked like after he had scraped a coffee can worth of sludge out of it...His engine was toast, ended up rebuilding it. by the way welcome to this site...Lots of money saving tips here always...

My vehicle is a RX300 2001 so it is in the "sludge" years:( I did not purchase it until 2002 so I think it still is in the 8 year 120 day window. I did not get the exact codes but they mentioned something about the codes saying that the engine had misfired. The more I read about these issues, I'm wondering if it will really be worth it?---most folks seem to still be paying a big chunk of the engine replacement costs themselves--up to 50% and going throught a whole lot of hassle. GRRRRRRRRRR!!!!

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the missfires could have been the cam position was bad....The VVTI engine has variable cam timing, and with sludge these can fail to operate, generating a code....I have read that most reputable dealerships will take care of the problem at their cost, not yours... I would pursue this and possible try another dealership. Maybe even ask a Toyota dealership if they can handle it. If you have records of your oil changes than you should not be taking the cost of this....Push hard, but politely and get someone that will treat you as a customer that deserves service....The lawsuit which was settled in court said any damage caused by sludge would be covered by Toyota....

Read this:

http://www.consumeraffairs.com/news04/2007...settlement.html

You can even go to a third party arbitrator if necessary....

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The consumeraffairs.com article is interesting where it says "In 2002 Toyota .... extended its vehicle warranty to eight years along with unlimited mileage to owners of 1997-2002 Toyota and Lexus vehicles equipped with 3.0-liter V-6 or 2.2-liter four-cylinder engines". The "unlimited mileage" item is new to me, and I suspect to be wrong. Can anyone corroborate it?

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The consumeraffairs.com article is interesting where it says "In 2002 Toyota .... extended its vehicle warranty to eight years along with unlimited mileage to owners of 1997-2002 Toyota and Lexus vehicles equipped with 3.0-liter V-6 or 2.2-liter four-cylinder engines". The "unlimited mileage" item is new to me, and I suspect to be wrong. Can anyone corroborate it?

... unlimited mileage (for sludge) during the 8 years+

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I see now. Sorry about MY confusion on the issue. I was reading that article's wording as saying that the 1997-2002 Toyota and Lexus vehicles had unlimited mileage even if the 8 year coverage period had expired. Apparently, not the case. Thanks for keeping me honest.

Just for reference, I came across a site that mentions the 3rd party arbitrator assigned by the court and details of the actual settlement. I thought I'd throw that in here for reference, in case it proves helpful anywhere.

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