jsmith20

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About jsmith20

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    Club Member

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  • First Name
    Joel

Profile Information

  • Gender
    Male
  • Lexus Model
    LS400
  • Lexus Year
    1999
  • Location
    Michigan (MI)
  1. To add to this thread, I bought a 1999 LS400 with 78k miles, out of FL, in 2010 (I live in west Michigan). In the first 12 months, I had the timing belt replaced and was asked if I had EVER changed the oil, as it was that full of sludge. I have used Mobil 1 full synthetic since the day I owned, assuming either previous owner screwed it up, or the change in oils did something (unlikely). Overall it has run well for the past 7yrs, until the last week. Low oil pressure light started coming on intermittently. When it comes on, the lifters knock. When I restart the car it goes away for a period of time. Had the oil pressure checked and it measured 70psi. Last night I dropped the oil pan and found a nasty mess...1/4" of sludge in lower pan and solid crust in upper pan. Planning to flush engine tonight, refilling and crossing my fingers...but I fully expect to be buying my next vehicle sooner than I was planning.
  2. I took one of the coils off before and noticed that the wiring harness was really brittle...is this common? It was the first thing I checked this morning...the two coils I disconnected a couple months ago, to make sure they were still plugged in. I had it on my short list to replace the timing belt, but may have a shop do it instead. What is an average cost for the TB, WP, and pulleys,etc...? I got a quote today for $960. Thanks
  3. Several threads on this, but looking for some more insight... 1999 LS 400, 90k miles, no known TB service Moved my car a couple times this weekend and thought the exhaust smelled like stale gas...hadn't noticed this before (now wondering if its related) On my way to work, the VSC and Check Engine lights came on. Didn't notice any difference until I stopped...car was idling rough Pulled the code at lunch (started and ran smooth)...p1350 Left the store and the car started running rough again. Should I take it to a shop and let them take care of it, or just replace the timing belt and hope that fixes it :-) Thanks for the help
  4. '99 LS400. I had a '96 that didn't do this, and with the rest of the build quality of these cars, I can't believe this is normal. I'm wondering if there is a missing air dam or something as it seems like as air is flowing over/under the hood it will cause it to bounce slightly...only near the hinges, near the windshield washer jets. I checked the rubber stops on the front apron, but those seem to be tight. As well as that hinges seem tight. All the finders and hood have the OEM barcodes, so I don't think it has been worked on, but I don't know. Thoughts on how to remove this "bouncing"
  5. Anyone else have this issue? passenger bank, closest to the firewall. '99 LS400 with 85k. Bought is at 83k and noticed it after the first long trip. Took off the coil, cleaned the seal and all surfaces, replaced and torqued (screws were tight before I removed). Oil leak is back. Do I need to replace the coil or can I just add some RTV/gasket silicone? Thanks
  6. Thank you for the feedback :-) I topped off the wiper fluid reservoir...I'll check the float sensor, I'm hoping it's that simple. I had a couple other alarms that tripped at the same time (check engine and check VCS?) but they both cleared after disconnecting the battery.
  7. YES !! both my 99's do this. Perfect. New ATF may help a little, but sounds like this is just part of the program. Thanks for the feedback :-)
  8. I recently purchased a '99 LS400 with 83k on it (replaced my totaled '96). I have noticed that it has a hard time shifting from 1st to 2nd the first time...and sometimes back to 1st. Generally I'll shift into N for a second and then back to D and it shifts normally the rest of the trip. It has been pretty cold here in Michigan and have been using that as an excuse. However, the weather has been warm enough lately that I don't think it should be cold enough to delay the shift. I have looked at the fluid, it is in the normal range for volume, but is a little darker than I would expect. Thoughts? My plan is to replace the AT Fluid with the hope that will fix it, but would like your thoughts if I should try something more, at the same time. Also - my battery was low the other day and as a result my "Low Windshield Fluid" alarm came on...I know, seems strange, but thats when it happened. I topped off the reservoir (was already 90% full), still on. Removed the battery cable for 30m+, still on...thoughts on how to reset this alarm?
  9. Thanks for pointing it out, do you know how to change the title? The edit button only allows me to edit the body of the post. Anyway, back the to the issue at hand :-) I have now contacted the last owner, the dealership the car was traded in to, the auction house, and again the dealer I bought the car from...I don't think there are many more places to look I got some firm numbers from the dealer and here they are 2 master keys - 185x2 = $370 ECU - Lexus will cover the first replacement Labor - I have to pay to replace the ECU and program, not sure how much that will be, but I'm guessing $200 isn't too high. So through the local Lexus dealer I'm looking at $570+ So here is my real question...does anyone know the details of flashing the ECU? I've read I can download freeware, buy a cable for my laptop and flash the ECU myself...is it that easy, or is it that easy to mess up the ECU? If it is that easy, do I need 2 master keys like Lexus is saying I do, when I reflash/replace my ECU or can I just buy 1? Thanks again for the help
  10. I was able to remove the plug that is for the truck release and jumped the circuit...worked like a champ. I took me a good 30m to do it, but to do it again would be less than 10m...I get more and more cynical everytime I interact with the dealership...$95/10m work, I'm in the wrong business, however they didn't get mine, so I guess they priced themselves out of the market. Now the booty. I was REALLY hoping to find OEM floor mats, two master keys, another valet key...but I found a couple mismatched mats and thats about it. So now I need to solve the master key problem so I can unlock the trunk lock and have a remote that works with the car. (FWiW - I tried programming my '96 key fob to my '99...but it didn't work. the dealership said I couldn't do it period, but will this work once I get a master key programmed to the car?) Joel
  11. Great post, thanks! I needed to jump/the circuit for the trunk release and this helped me.
  12. Thanks Steve :-) I did know about the lost key...didn't expect how big an issue it would be to get into my truck though or that I need an new or flashed ECU to program another key. The valet key doesn't have a transponder in it that will let me program the '96 fob I have?
  13. I didn't realize there is a pass-through there...is it pretty obvious? Do I need to remove anything, or just "flip open" a door/panel? Thanks, It sounded too easy...I don't see a passthru on this car, am I missing something? From the dealer here are my options. A - jump the switch for the truck release - $95 I'm praying there is a master key in the truck B - IF not, I will need to buy a master key (through the dealer it's ~$200) C - THEN I supposedly need a new computer (which they said they may cover, not sure why, but that sounds expensive to just throw in) D - Then it needs to be programmed...again $95 through the dealer so in total (assuming a free computer) I'm looking at $400 - YIKES What are your thoughts out there? If I only have a valet key, can I get a master key cut somewhere? I'm pretty sure I can program the key myself...but do I really need to replace the computer if I get a new master key? Thanks - Joel
  14. I didn't realize there is a pass-through there...is it pretty obvious? Do I need to remove anything, or just "flip open" a door/panel? Thanks,
  15. What are my options... Have a locksmith manually open the trunk? Take it to Lexus? Can the remote switch lock by unlocked with just a master key blank? Get a new master key with remote, train it an unlock that way? Resort to my .38 special? I'm HOPING that there is a set of keys in the truck along with the floor mats...that would be GREAT!, but I won't know until I get it open, so I really don't want to spend much money on keys until I get the truck open. Any thoughts would be great. Oh yeah, when I joined this club I didn't think I would be one of the members that listed multiple LS's in their signature bar...but I just brougth home my 2nd last night...a 1999 Mystic Blue LS400-SF with 81000 miles :-) Thanks, Joel