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Everything posted by K9crew

  1. Call the phone number included in my previous post. It's been 18 months since I had the head unit display replaced by Mikado and so far all is good. However, something else may be up with the head unit ... if I turn it off in CD play mode and then turn it back on it often defaults to FM mode. It never used to do this but now it seems to do it 50 to 75% of the time. This is moderately annoying but I can live with it as long as the head unit continues to work. :)
  2. BTT BTW ... I changed plugs, fuel filter, air filter, pcv valve, oil and oil filter in the past few months. :)
  3. My '99 LS has been trouble free for 20k miles (bought at 58K now at 79K) but in the past few weeks I've noticed a slight stumble in N or P but not in D. When I'm waiting at a light I usually put the transmission in N (sometimes P if I know it'll be a while) to reduce heat in the tranny. I've been experiencing an intermittent stumble in the engine when doing this. Does this sound like a vacuum leak? What's the best approach to finding a vacuum leak? What else could be the cause? Thanks :)
  4. Does your remote have an LED on it? My '99 remote has an LED so I know if the keys are working. The unlock key (button) on my factory master remote is very temperamental to the point that I have to push it quite hard to get the LED to illuminate. If the LED isn't illuminating then the remote isn't transmitting. For this reason I bought another couple of used keys from eBay. I then cut off the metal key where it meets the plastic body, added the remotes to my vehicles "memory" and then use them with the valet keys. It's crude but it works. The keypads on the "new" remotes work very well compared to my original master key. :)
  5. A couple of days ago my turn signal arrow in the dash display started to flash on/off at about twice the usual rate when indicating to turn left. I soon realized that the front driver's side turn signal light wasn't working. Like many here I removed the screw that secures the TS housing to the main headlight but I couldn't remove the housing. I pulled gently then harder, tried twisting and eventually gave up since I didn't want to break anything. My next stop was this bulletin board where I found this excellent thread. Thanks to cayo I was able to remove the housing. Incidentally, I found that the bulb was ok so I disconnected the bulb holder from the push-on connector and sprayed the connector with Triflow. After reassembly the bulb works fine and my turn signal works fine. Anyway, here are a couple of photos that might help others. The red arrows show the plastic "nipple" and the plastic retainer that need to be separated during removal. Turn signal housing removed Turn signal housing :)
  6. Yes ... it makes sense since the water "holding" ability of air is directly related to its temperature. As air cools its ability to "hold" water decreases. That's why most a/c systems have to heat the air (slightly) after the air has been cooled but before its delivered to a room/car etc. Otherwise water would condense on numerous surfaces and we wouldn't like that very much. :)
  7. jzz30 ... me too!! Drop by if you have time ... you must know Jesmond, Alex and Ryan ... I work with them in POST. Talking of the Mark Levinson system in the new cars, my brother isn't too impressed with the ML in his 430 but I've never had a chance to listen to it so I don't know if it's good or bad. Perhaps I'll have a chance to check it out when I visit the UK in February. :)
  8. jzz30, Yep ... the presentation was in the amphitheatre in Kuykendal in early November if my memory serves me. What department are you in? I work in POST for Lloyd Hihara. :) I hadn't realized that Bose claimed to be high end since you can buy a complete Bose system for the cost of a pair of audiophile quality speakers. Heck, you can buy three Bose systems with the amount of money my brother spent on his Quad amp. I've heard Dr. Bose speak on two occasions and I certainly don't think that he's anything to joke about. He has proven himself to be an innovator, successful entrepreneur and outstanding teacher. Why try to put him down or imply that anyone that buys Bose products is an idiot? There are many Lexus owners with Bose sound systems in their vehicles that are quite happy with what they have.
  9. Dr. Bose came to our university last semester and gave a presentation to our engineering department on the new suspension system that took 22 years to complete. It was very impressive and we all gasped and laughed at the end of the presentation when Dr. Bose showed the LS400 (moving at about 25mph) "jumping" over a 2" x 8" on the ground .... it was like watching a horse jump a fence. Supposedly the German auto makers have expressed a real interest in this technology. Dr. Bose is a real car guy with many funny stories about the terrible cars that he's owned and worked on. :)
  10. Hey, the Lexus dealer called to tell me that the strut bar cushions have arrived and 99lsguy very kindly helped me out with some relevant information from the factory repair manual so I'm all set for this weekend. I'll try to take some photos and provide a HOW TO of sorts. I sure hope this doesn't turn out to be a "goat roping"!! I'm quietly optimistic that my car will be knock-free after this little project. :)
  11. Blake, I'll be changing those strut rod cushions/bushings this coming weekend assuming that the parts arrive in time. They cost me $38.76 each from the Lexus dealer. I haven't checked the manual but I'll probably have to get the allignment checked after since I think there's a caster adjustment nut there. :)
  12. $HIT!! I just checked KBB again and my car lost another $900 in SIX WEEKS!! YOU HAVE GOT TO BE KIDDING!! Private party price for excellent condition was $21,780 on 11/29/04 and now on 01/09/05 it's $20,880!!
  13. 99, Yeah, I was surprised by the depreciation this year too!! As you know, our cars could be twins. The original owner paid $60k for my car in '99 and I bought it in November of '03 with 58k miles on it for $23,500. A recent check on KBB showed the private party sale price to be about $21,700 in Hawaii so I've lost almost $2000 in one year. My wife's '95 SC400 depreciated by only $100 in the same period ... go figure. Of course, my depreciation of $2000 in a year is nothing compared to the original owner's depreciation of close to $40,000 in five years!!! Now THAT'S an expensive car to own. I used to buy new cars every 18 months or so but this LS experience has taught me to NEVER buy a new car/truck again unless I can get a special deal such as X-plan or A-plan as I did on my '02 F-350. I bought it for $36k and sold it two years later for $34k. I didn't get killed on the deal because a new truck in Hawaii should have cost close to $44k but I got a great deal through a fleet sales manager in CA. :)
  14. The part number on my receipt is 48674-40051 and I ordered two of them since it's the same part for the left and right side. I plan on replacing the cushions (that's what the dealership calls them) on 01/17/05 or the weekend before and I'll take photos of the old and new cushions. My LS is a '99 model so the part number may be different for your vehicle. :)
  15. Well, I replaced all four rotors and front and rear brake pads on 01/01/05. I remembered to clamp off the brake lines and loosen the bleeder screw when pushing the pistons back into the caliper so as to prevent debris from working its way back towards the master cylinder. The rear pads were almost completely worn down ... maybe 10% left (they were the original pads). The front pads had about 40% left. I partially flushed the brake fluid with Valvoline Syntec brake fluid and bled all four lines. I didn't bleed the ABS though and plan to do it this weekend. I checked the suspension out fairly thoroughly along with the hubs and decided that I only need to change the "cushions" on the two suspension arms that connect the lower control arm to the unibody (run from lower control arm forward). The end that connects to the LCA has two studs and the other end has a large bushing/cushion connection. I ordered new cushions for $38.76 each from my local Lexus dealer. Once I replace those I should no longer have the thumping sound when I hit a pothole or speed bump ... we'll see. The brakes are WAY better now. I have Centric cross-drilled/slotted rotors with AXXIS pads (formerly Repco Metal Master). They're a bit slick when cold but once warm they're excellent. Also, I reassembled the shims on all pads as per the manual and I have no brake noise, no squealing, no rattling, just quiet and effective braking. :)
  16. 99, Good to be back!! Thanks for the offer of info in the manual and see you in September if I'm still here. jzz30, Thanks for the offer and I'll let you know if I need professional help!!
  17. Thanks guys. At this point I'm not sure what needs to be done but I should have a better idea this weekend. It could be the bushings on either end of the bar (runs fore and aft) that connects the front suspension to the chassis ... I've read about those bushings going bad which can result in a clunking front end. I'll certainly let you know what I find. :)
  18. OK .. as typical LS400 owners, when can we expect to have to rebuild the front steering/suspension components i.e. ball joints, bushings, shocks, springs etc? I have 73k on my LS now and the front end is very loose. Potholes, speed bumps, bad asphalt etc are no fun. The right front knocks quite badly pulling into my driveway even going slowly. I'm guessing that I need new bushings or possibly ball joints in the front along with bushings for the bar that ties the front suspension to the chassis. I'm replacing all four rotors this weekend with cross drilled/slotted that I've had for a while because my front rotors are badly warped. I plan on taking a good look at the front suspension and putting together a parts list that I can take to the local dealer. I'm sure that it's going to cost an arm and a leg for all the parts that I'll need. :)
  19. This is something that I may have to do but I'll know for sure this weekend once I measure the end play and runout of the hubs and spindles (0.002in max). I read in the repair manual that a vibration in the steering wheel can be due to worn wheel bearings. I have 72k on my car now so I guess it's possible that the bearings are worn. All you need to measure bearing pre-load is a torque wrench ... preferably the beam type as opposed to the ratcheting type since they're easier to read when measuring drag force. :)
  20. jzz30, thanks for the clarification but it doesn't make much sense. If all of the sockets fit and they're plugged in with functioning bulbs what could be different about the later model lights that cause the malfunction light on the dash to illuminate ... hmmmm. Thanks for the help though. :)
  21. UCF3, That's an interesting idea ... I'll check on that once I figure out how to verify a loose fan clutch. bean_8044, The vibration starts soft and increases to a maximum then subsides just like the oil flow in the cooling fan hoses. I don't think a bad motor or trans mount would feel like that ... Thanks for the ideas but I'm still hoping that someone has installed an electric fan. My LS400 has an electric fan so there has to be a reason why Lexus didn't go with a hydraulic fan on that car. :)
  22. I'm convinced that the significant vibration (felt in the seats, pedals, floor etc) that I'm getting in my car at idle is due to the hydraulic cooling fan since it coincides with an increase in oil flow through the hydraulic hoses that go to and from the fan. I've been thinking about replacing the whole system with an electric fan from Perma-Cool and was wondering if anyone has done this.
  23. jzz30, Thanks for the info confirming that rear lights from a '97 and up will fit my '95 but I don't quite follow your comment about the wiring harness. Are you saying that the '95 wiring harness needs to be modified so that the bulb holders will fit the '97 and up light? Does this modification cause the in-dash bulb to come on? I'd appreciate some more help on this. :)
  24. I made a post months ago that the transmission drain plug on my '99 LS400 had been stripped (probably by Park Place Lexus in Plano, TX). At that time I "repaired" the threads on the plug with a 10mm x 1.5 die and ran a tap through the drain hole and managed to torque the plug to 15 lb-ft. This past Sunday I decided to change the oil and as per 99's suggestion, drain the transmission pan (I do that every oil change now). Well, the plug was damaged beyond repair when I removed it so it's my guess that the threads had been too badly damaged in TX and couldn't hold up to 15 lb-ft. Since I had no drainplug, I decided to push my car a few feet down the driveway to clear the garage door and let it sit there until I could get a new plug from Lexus. I was finally able to get a new plug on Tuesday which I installed without problem that evening. In the morning I added 2.5 QTS since the pan holds 2 QTS and there wasn't much ATF on my driveway. However, as it turns out, I had to add 6 QTS in the end to bring the ATF up to the correct level. I couldn't believe that an additional 4 QTS of ATF had dripped out of the transmission onto my driveway!! Anway, the point of all of this is that if you have the time and you want to drain more than just 2 QTS then park your car on a slight incline (engine higher than trunk), remove the drain plug and leave it for a while. :)
  25. Does anyone know if '96 or newer SC400 tail lights will fit in a '95 SC400? I did a search but couldn't find any information regarding this possible upgrade. Thanks :)
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