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10 Repair Diagnosis You Don't Want - Toyota Parts Center Blog

When your mechanic has your Toyota in their shop, it can be nerve wracking. What’s the price going to be? How long will it be there? Are you going to need a new car? No fun. What you’re really hoping is to hear that the problem with your Toyota was something simple but if you hear any of these 10 things, it’s going to be a bad day.


Replace rotors

10. “We Have to Replace the Rotors Too”

You waited too long to have the pads replaced and now the rotors can’t be machined, they need to be replaced. Not a total crisis but that brake job just got a lot more expensive. Save yourself the hassle and replace the pads as soon as they need to be serviced and your rotors will last much longer.


New clutch

9. “You Need a New Clutch”

You just thought the hydraulics needed to be bled or it was time for a fluid top off. Nope, your entire clutch disc is toast and they’ll have to drop the transmission to change it! Get out your wallet and take up a hobby that you can do at home because it’s going to be a while until you can drive again. Clutches are a serviceable part, so at some point everyone with a manual transmission will have to replace the clutch disc.


Overheated engine

8. “The Engine Overheated”

An overheated engine can mean replacement of internals if the problem went on too long. At the very least there’s a problem with your cooling system and you’re looking at a new water pump, radiator, etc. As soon as you notice your vehicle’s temperature shooting up, pull over and turn the car off.


Torque converter

7. “The Torque Converter Needs a Rebuild”

The torque converter is located between your engine and transmission and a rebuild or replacement is going to mean a lot of time and money. While this part isn’t meant to wear, it can due to low transmission fluid levels or overheating fluid. Check your fluid for levels and signs of burning.


Blown head gasket

6. “A Head Gasket is Blown”

It’s common but it’s a mess — head gaskets can be a mess to deal with if they go bad. A bad head gasket will allow coolant to mix in with your oil and you’ve got quite a situation to deal with once this happens. Overheating is usually what causes it, so keep an eye out for that.


Timing belt

5. “Your Timing Belt is Broken”

Located behind the front cover of your engine, the timing belt isn’t going to destroy anything when it breaks but it will leave you stranded. The timing belt is supposed to be replaced as part of your Toyota’s service schedule — check your owner’s manual for recommended replacement.


Filling fluids


4. “Someone Put the Wrong Fluid in the Wrong System”

There’s coolant in the oil but the head gasket isn’t blown or there’s transmission fluid in the brake reservoir — major oops! This mistake can be costly. At the very least, the system in question will need to be flushed completely and refilled. Be careful to read fluid labels to make sure you’re putting the right stuff in the right place.


Water in engine

3. “Water Got Into Your Engine and It’s Hydrolocked”

Should’ve swerved to miss that puddle instead of powering through because now there’s water in the cylinders. While water doesn’t easily reach the engine internals, with deep enough water and a point of entry, it can make it in and ruin your motor. It’s best to avoid driving through water that can cover your wheels.


Seized engine

2. “There’s No Oil in Your Engine and It Seized”

Uh oh, you forgot to check it didn’t you? Now your engine is done for — maybe you could make a coffee table out of it? Check your oil between oil changes and keep an eye on your oil pressure while driving. If you’re losing oil or the pressure is low, something is wrong.


Car fall

1. “Your Car Fell Off Our Lift”

You’ve probably seen a picture or video of this happening to some poor vehicle owner who just popped in for a routine oil change. Lift goes up, car goes down!

Most of these issues can be prevented through regular maintenance and using the right parts during service. That’s why it’s very important to stick with genuine Toyota parts and keep an eye on the condition of your car before small problems get out of hand.

Written by Elizabeth Puckett