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Timing Belt 2003 Es 300


Davenport
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My 2003 ES300 has done 110,000 careful kms. It was garaged in a climate controlled underground garage for the first 6 years of it's life.

The book recommends changing the timing belt at 6 yrs or 144,000 km. (which my mechanic has just pointed out !)

I've got it booked in for a new belt next week, but until then I'm afraid to drive it.

Am I being paranoid or rightly careful ?

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You should go ahead and replace per Lexus recommendation. While this is not an interference engine it still makes good sense to follow the maintenance schedule. Mine was replaced at exactly 90,000 miles, beats getting stranded...

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You should go ahead and replace per Lexus recommendation. While this is not an interference engine it still makes good sense to follow the maintenance schedule. Mine was replaced at exactly 90,000 miles, beats getting stranded...

Cheers Mike. I've just talked to Lexus and they told me it has a non-interference engine. That's what I really wanted to hear !

I'll get it done soon, but it's not urgent and at least there's no danger of doing all the valves in if it does go.

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I believe that if you lift the hood on your 2003, you will see the VVT-i logo on your engine cover. This designation implies that in fact you do have an interference engine. In any case, you can rest assured that changing the belt at the recommended interval will be OK. I would suggest that you also change the water pump and tensioner at the same time.

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I believe that if you lift the hood on your 2003, you will see the VVT-i logo on your engine cover. This designation implies that in fact you do have an interference engine. In any case, you can rest assured that changing the belt at the recommended interval will be OK. I would suggest that you also change the water pump and tensioner at the same time.

After reading this I did some internet research. Great deal of confusion regarding the 1MZ-FE engine. Some sources list it as non-interference in all configurations, others list it as non-interference until VVT-i which is listed as interference. A few sources list all 1MZ-FE engines as interference. I wish I could find something official from Toyota on the subject. I seem to recall, in the dim recesses of my memory, a TSB that had just such a list while I was writing for Alldata. I think it was prior to the VVT-i engines though.

In any event, I will retract my earlier statement. With all the confusion, I would rather be safe than sorry and replace it now. Might as well put a waterpump on it at the same time...

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