Victims of Toyota Oil Sludge

Been a victim? Tell us YOUR STORY


david wilkie

las vegas, Nevada 89102

2007 tacoma standard 2 door cab 120,000 miles

i just discovered my sludge problem. i thought i had a starter issue?like a bad tooth on the helix till i realized that it was a lifter chatter. acted like a helix problem. so i took the valve cover off and no it was not low on oil. i seen the worst collection of sludge chunks i ever seen. and did auto machining for 4 years back in the 80s. i thought i went coal mining in a dream. No it was a nightmare coming true. i have not talked to toyota yet. i cleaned the top end spotless and also cleaned the bottom end, yes the oil pick up was clogged,cleaned it and hoped it did the trick. my oil lite comes on at idle and upon revving it goes right out. and chatter is gone than sitting at idle it come back after 30-45 now i'm pulling the front cover off and it houses the rotor or pump. hopefully it goes away. the front cover from dealer is 750.00 plus at retail. i found it on line for 588.00 shipping and handling. i have never ever gone to 7,500 miles on a oil change. the most is 4,000 miles at most. this is a serious problem they have.



Los Angeles, California 90065

2007 Lexus RX 350  125,000 miles

I'll keep it short! Toyota/Lexus motors suck. Oil sludge big time...was just told by my master mechanic who at one point worked for both Toyota and Lexus my motor is going bad and I need to replace it! Tons of sludge. Always use top quality oil and changed oil regularly. Real Shame. Now i have to replace motor at the cost of minimum $2500 for a used motor!


Alan Poepping

Fond du Lac, Wisconsin 54937

2000 Avalon LE 146,400 miles

I bought the Toyota Avalon used last year. The car was well maintained and with oil changes done every 3,000 miles. Recently I started having engine misfire issues and the dealer said it was due to engine sludge and there were a few codes that came up to verify that. They are replacing a few parts at the present, plan to clean the engine and replace the oil. The original estimate is for over $500 and that may not fix the problem. Is there any recourse as this seems to be problem for this year/make of Avalon?


Anthony Kollman

Spokane, Washington 99205

2004 Corolla LE 83,000 miles

2004 Toyota Corolla LE, bought new from the dealership and had no oil consumption problems or oil sludge problems until 3 weeks ago, when (during our most recent routine oil change)the mechanic showed us large quantities of oil sludge under the oil cap, the consistency of peanut butter. The day after the oil change with a high grade synthetic oil, the vehicle was leaving huge clouds of blue smoke behind the vehicle. It never smoked at all before 3 weeks ago, but now it had become a traffic problem.

Took the vehicle to the Toyota dealership and the mechanic pretended to have never heard of a Toyota oil sludge problem. Then I showed him the various websites I had discovered via my iPhone while in the repair waiting room. Then he gave me the phone number to Toyota corporate. They tried to tell me that I only had a 3yr./50,000 mile warranty. Then I advised them that I had bought the Platinum extended warranty, to which they said I would have to contact Toyota Financial because they are a separate company and that they could not help me since my Toyota year and model was not in the oil sludge class action lawsuit settled in 2007.

So then I called Toyota Financial, who verified that I had the Platinum extended warranty, but that warranty was only good to 75,000 miles and I was at 83,000. So they said they couldn't help me either and that the only escalation process would be through Toyota corporate as they were separate companies.

Last of all, back at the Toyota repair shop they said it would be a total engine replacement for approximately $10K. The mechanic also said that the piston rings and the valve guides were the CAUSE of the blue smoke and the oil sludge. I then advised him that he has the cause and effect reversed: the oil sludge proceeded the blue smoke out of the tailpipe, not the other way around.

So now I am having the engine replaced at a local shop, not Toyota, and I had found a 55,000 Japanese rebuild and am having it replaced for a third of what Toyota wanted.

Does anyone have any knowledge on how to escalate this matter and get Toyota to pay for the repair? Or is there a pending class action, other than the 2007 oil sludge settlement. Thanks, in advance, for any advice or direction.


Rhoda Nicholson

Washington, District Of Columbia 20032

2007 Solara SE 106,280 miles

Purchase second Toyota with a oil sludge/excessive consumption issues. Car was regularly maintained/regular oil changes. Solara has been identified with excessive oil consumption and now needs an complete engine overhaul. I contact Toyota Corp regarding this issue and they stated it's no financial assistance available at this time. The Toyota charge is $5,700.00, I was given a case # for future references just in case Toyota Corp decides to assist customers.


marta jeannette soriano

panorama city, California 91402

2008 sienna LE 66,853 miles

I started having problems with my 2008 Toyota Sienna a week ago,white smoke is coming out of the rear pipe. I took it to Hammer Toyota located in Mission Hills, California for service which is still under warranty until 2015. They did a diagnostic and it came back with oil sludge. The employees (Advisor # 210 , George B )blame me of not doing an oil change for years.I have records of the last 2 years of all oil changes that i done to my vehicle.I have the Toyota Extra Care Platinum Plan and they still don't want to cover the repairs. I think that this is unfair and it's impossible that they're a lot of people with this same problem on many Toyota vehicles. Toyota knows that there's a major problem with oil sludge and the only way out is to blame the consumer.Please contact me at 818-605-3304 and please help me because i have no money to pay for the repairs or for legal help. Thank you ,

Marta J Soriano


Manyiu Ma

Grand Rapids, Michigan 49506

2002 Sienna LE 145,000 miles

Engine light on during a trip from Texas to Michigan. Toyota dealer found a valve that needed to be replaced along with the sensor incurring $2000+ repairs. Mechanic also found sludge in the engine estimated at an additional $3000+ to have the engine cleaned.


Todd Loepfe

Oconomowoc, Wisconsin 53066

2003 RX300 AWD 120,000 miles

I bought my RX300 (loaded) used in 2010 at 85,000 miles. It was a 1 owner vehicle who took the car to the dealer for all maintenance. I drove the car to 110,000 miles (doing regular maintanence), when I noticed it started using oil.It was using 1 qt per tank of gas. It did not smoke, I did not know where the oil was going. Last week on my way to Vermont on vacation the catalytic covertor failed, I had to be towed. The car was diagnosed with cat problems and engine misfires. After replacing the Cat Conv and clearing the codes it ran great for about 1500 miles, no noticable oil usage. Then it started mis-firing badly, had to be towed again. I replaced the plugs and coil packs to only find that the #2 cylinder was dead. I limped the car home 1200 miles on 5 cylinders and was back to using 1-2 qrts each tank of gas. I now have a 5 cylinder $13,000 vehicle? Is this sludge issue the cause of all these problems? The mechanic told me the #2 cylinder failure is common on these engines.



Berdiyorov, Ohio 44139

2002 Camry XLE 75,000 miles

I had to replace my engine and it cost me $2700. When we opened it, it was mess inside. However I was changing oil every 3000 Miles.


Jack R

San Ramon, California 94583

2001 Avalon ELS 179,000 miles

Just got a quote for $1,800 to clean the sludge the best they can or spend $8,000 to replace the engine. If I caught his 5 years ago could maybe have been part of the settlement -


Frederick J. Everly

Sewell, New Jersey 08080

2009 Toyota Avalon XLE 42,000 miles

I have a 2009 Toyota Avalon XLE with approximately 42k miles. I purchased the auto from the same Toyota dealer that sold me a Celica, Corolla and Camry and this dealer is part of an Auto Mall owned by Penske that also sold me a Honda Accord and a Nissan Ultima.
About 2 weeks ago my wife got in our Toyota Avalon to attend a church meeting. She came back into the house and told me she noticed white smoke emitting from the (2) exhaust pipes. When I started the car back up I too saw the white smoke. I lifted the hood and checked the engine and I found black sludge on the bottom of the engine oil fill cap. I also found the sludge on the top of my engine. Another thing that I noticed was that there wasn't 1 drop of engine coolant in the reservoir. This appeared to be very strange to me because I check the fluids in all of my cars regularly and top them off when needed.
I took my car to the Toyota dealer as I thought this issue was covered under the Powertrain warranty. The dealer contacted me and requested that I provide them with receipts for ALL of my oil changes. I could only produce (2) receipts for oil changes (one that the dealer performed at the 7,000 mile mark) because I usually self-perform my oil changes. Although I don't have the 2nd oil change receipt with me, the work was performed by Firestone on 7/28/13. Firestone made no comment to me about the condition of the replaced oil. Toyota and the dealer have rejected my claim citing that I did not maintain the car properly because I could not produce receipts for the oil and filters that I had purchased from Pep Boys. I paid cash for the oil and filters and had no reason to suspect that I would have to maintain cash receipts for such purchases that seemed trivial to me. Now they want me to pay them to either clean/flush the engine (if possible) or replace the engine. When donkeys fly! Why would I ever reward a dealer by authorizing work that should be performed under the warranty that was issued when I purchased the car? And how did my coolant disappear in the resevoir so quickly? No one wants to address that matter and they immediately divert the issue to the fact that I don't have oil and filter receipts.
I'm at a loss as to what to do. I don't know if oil treatments, engine flushes, etc. will work. I don't want to spend good money after bad trying oil treatment products that just won't work. And I don't know what recourse I have to make Toyota make good on their warranty.
Stuck in Sewell.

Fred Everly


Joseph Ayala

Littlefield, Texas 79339

2008 highlander  52,000 miles

This is still a problem same thing with our 2008 highlander oil sludge and smoke coming out from the tailpipe and engine light on even with regular oil changes.our car had 52000 miles and 5 months over my warranty and Toyota refused to repair our car said it was our fault even with oil change records they said it was still not enough proof of engine failure,this was my first and last toyota i will ever buy



Newark, Ohio 43055

2001 Highlander V6 Limited 120,000 miles

Had our Highlander for about a year. Drove it to FL for vacation. While in FL it started knocking really loud but stopped when I put it in gear and hit the accelerator. Had NO idea what it could be. We drove to Walmart and I stopped at AutoZone in front of Walmart. Ran DX which showed a couple misfires but nothing really. Checked oil on dipstick and there was none. Bought a quart of oil, poured in and checked again. No oil on stick. Went back in store, bought another quart and poured in and checked again. No oil on stick. Went back in store, bought 5 quart container and started pouring oil in. Took total of 3 1/2 quarts to fill up. Needless to say, I was adding over a quart of oil each time I had to stop for gas on the way home to Ohio. SUV sporadically blows smoke out tailpipe when starting up. You can also see burnt brown substance on inside of engine block when you take the oil cap off. Did research online and discovered these stories and thousands more. Called Toyota today and was assigned a case #. Supposed to get a call tomorrow. Already know what my answer will be since I'm not the original owner, the vehicle's over 8 yrs and I change my own oil. I bought a Jeep Commander to replace this piece of crap Highlander. Yeah the Highlander handles great in the snow, rides real smooth, love the heated seats. None of that counts when your engine's crap though. Put it up for sale yesterday. Will probably have trouble getting rid of it since I'm honest. Won't be any other way though.


Tara Hearndon

Farmington hills, Michigan 48336

2003 Toyota Camry LE 127,541 miles

I brought the car brand new from Bob Sacks Toyota. They had the car shipped from another part of MI and it had 4,000 miles already on it. I had frequent oil changes for the life of my vehicle and I have paper work to prove it! I am very dissatisfied with this car. I have video at 127,xxx miles showing bob sacks had been changing my oil & the oil light came on before I was due for the next oil change. I was then on the freeway at 6:30am in the morning and my car started to give me trouble. I then pulled over and popped the hood to see if I saw anything out of place. I saw nothing, so I got back into the car and off to the freeway. I got about a mile down with gas being accerlated and the car just stopped in the middle of the freeway. I tried to give it gas and the more I tried to give it gas, the more it slowed down and came to a complete halt. I was fearful for my life in the middle of traffic with oncoming morning workers headed to work. I had the car checked out by two reputable companies one of them was Toyota, who stated it was the engine and that it was knocking and it was the crankshaft and the bearings. They stated it may have been the incomplete oil changes and I told them, not so & I have ALL the paperwork to prove it. I knew in order to maintain a vehicle it needs to be properly maintained and I did just that.



wausau, Wisconsin 54401

2008 scion tc  107,000 miles


I have had all of my regular 5000 mile oil changes done at a Toyota dealership, i recently had a oil consumption issue come to my attention when my oil light came on when i used the brake to come to a stop then would go off when stopped or accelerated. When i took my vehicle into the dealership they notified me that my vehicle was low on oil and that they would keep an "eye" on it and they said to come back in 800 miles to see how much oil it was consuming, when i returned after the suggested time the car also started to have top end noise which i also brought to there attention, they told me that it was from oil sludge around the pistons allowed oil to pass by the piston rings and that created oil starvation to the top end and that they recommend replacing the engine out of my pocket! I contacted Toyota corporate and told them the issue i was having they said that they would get back to me, a week later i called them back they said that they wouldn't replace the engine after warranty because i didn't get the recommended maintenance done which besides the oil changes was the inspection of other non engine related components IE.tie rod boots, ball joints etc. which in every oil change they do an inspection of those parts! i feel this is ridiculous and that they should replace my engine.

please contact me back to help me move forward with this issue.

Thanks for your time



Nancy Benz

Schenectady, New York 12308

2005 Highlander  101,000 miles

The car is in the shop now, as I had to have it towed in. I was starting out on an hour long trip to go up to Lake George when the oil light came on and the engine cut out. Just like that... no other warning. This is the second time it has happened in a matter of months. The car that I loved so much is doing me wrong. It's expensive, I've lost work time, and it is no longer reliable. I'll be trading this in to Toyota as soon as it is drivable.

I googled this problem only to find out many others have had the same issues. Toyota settled with earlier year Highlanders for the same problem, but first blamed it on the customer for poor oil maintenance.

I've been a Toyota driver for years, but this is where the line ends. They can no longer be trusted to sell a good product, or stand behind it.


Ben Hanson

Vienna, Virginia 22182

2002 Toyota Avalon XL 101,000 miles

I purchased a 2002 Avalon in 2005 which I exported to Ghana. I have been changing the oil regularly at 3,000 miles with no fail even to the extent that I do not wait for the 3,000 miles whenever I find myself in Accra because I live in one of the regional capitals, Cape Coast. In May 2013, my engine light came on and I pulled into a gas station thinking that there was no oil in the engine. The attendant checked and noticed that the oil was full. I took the car to a Toyota authorized workshop and they opened the bottom of the engine only to discover that there was a lot of sludge in the oil pan. They cleaned it and flushed the engine. The car went back on the road and the engine light came on again after a couple of days. I took the car back to the same Toyota authorized shop for them to discover a lot of goo in the oil pan. They again cleaned it and flushed the engine again. However, a week after this, the engine light came on again. Meanwhile after driving less than a mile the car began to smoke and heard loud clunking in the engine and the car came to an abrupt stop. The car was towed to the same Toyota authorized shop for them to tell me the bad news. I need a new engine since mine had conked out. I did not understand this since I have trusted Toyota cars and all the cars I have purchased in the past have been Toyotas. Currently, I have a 2004 Lexus 430LS Special Edition in the garage in the U.S. which I intended shipping to Ghana but I am afraid I am no longer going to do that. I will sell it and purchase an American-made SUV. I also intended buying about 3 Toyota SUVs for my $200m plus business in Ghana which we are on the verge of starting but it is not going to happen. I am going to purchase non Toyota SUVs. About my Avalon, I have just sourced a used engine in the U.S. which I have purchased and going to be shipped to me here in Ghana. I am holding my breath as I am afraid this replacement engine will have the same problem.


Bruce Anderson

1217 NW Torres Pine Ct, Oregon 97128

2005 RX 330  73,456 miles

I purchased this car a few weeks ago from a reputable non Lexus dealer. I saw mention of the sludge issue on a Lexus forum. I looked into the filler port and found a nice crusty carbon layer on what looks like a splash shield. Also noted some slight varnish on the dipstick. I've got the crud! No symptons yet. Dealer says I bought it as-is (true). It's a gorgeous car otherwise.
I traded a perfectly good Forester for this car.



Cincinnati, Ohio 45247

2003 Avalon Xls 103,200 miles

Hey folks
My story with this Avalon doesn't seem to be different at all. Oil sludge again this is the common problem with these cars. Well I called Toyota after I was notified about this issue, my question is is this a customer treatment? Where customers set up for this trap to buy parts? I guess Toyota is the worst car in the world no nogotianians about that. I called their national line and I only hear these represntives laughing in the back ground!!! They told me go .......your self. Now I need at least 3000 if I want to find a good engine and a good mechanic to trust... Or 5000 grands to hand out to the dealership and I have no idea what to do

Buy Chevy or ford they are more realable ... Best cars in the world


Mark manshardt

Centennial, Colorado 80015

2006 RAV4 4cyl , 4x4, 113,834 miles

I bought 2006 certified RAV4 used with 34,000 mi on it from a Toyota Dealer. I also puchased an extended warranty that was good up to 100,000 mi. I have taken diligent care of it, changing the oil every 3000 -3600 mi. I,ve done all other needed maint. I now have 113,834 mi on it and was shocked, and I mean floored, to learn that the engine is shot because of oil being consumed by the engine. First discovered this as the engine was idling very rough and the oil lt flickered faintly. I chedked the oil as a precaution and found it to be nearly 2 qts down. This was unusual as it had never used a drop of oil previously and there were no current oil leaks to to explain the problem. I was due for an oil change shortly (at 3000 mi)so I took it in and was informed of the problem. I have been loyal to Toyota as my first "new car" was a 1983 Corolla and I took care of it also and drove it to 186,000 mi before I sold it. I feel Toyota should stand behind their product and do the right thing. The mechanic told me this is a known problem described in Service Bulletins.