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CarJunky AutoAdvice

2000 Toyota RAV4 - 405532 miles - heavy vibration

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Question From RAV4 on 2000 Toyota RAV4 - 405532 miles - heavy vibration

2000 Toyota RAV4 - 405532 miles - heavy vibration. Recently changed out the timing belt, water pump, tensioner pulley, guide pulley. The guide pulley's bolt broke off where it bolted to the oil pump housing. Replaced the housing by finding one at the junk yard. Had to drop the oil pan, etc. Put everything back together. Since that time there is a heavy vibration. Cold start when idle is a little high - no vibration. Once warm and driviing when slowing down to stop at a red light, for example, as the rpms drop the vibration begins. Once completely stopped - in gear - the vibration is so heavy it vibrates the dash, seats, steering wheel... if it is put in Neutral, the vibration eases up. It does this in Reverse and Drive - not so much in Park, if at all. Recently replaced the front engine mount. Have not ever replaced the passenger side (dampner) mount. The driver's side and the rear mounts were replaced 5 or so years ago as was the front engine mount. What's your thoughts? Thanks.

Response From Sidom

This one isn't like a Mits that uses a balance shaft that will cause this exact problem if not lined up correctly.....

I'm not sure how it runs but the on a problem like this the 1st thing you are going to want to do is pull the cover off & verify that the timing marks are in fact lined up correctly...

Does it seem like it has less power now when driving?? That would be a sign the cam is a tooth or 2 off...

Response From RAV4

No loss of power, its running great. No mis-firing or missing thru out driving speed, no stumbling at take off. Is it possible that there is some sort of lvacumm leak? Or some sensor on the transmission loose? I just don't believe the timing is off or anything else along those lines. Its just not showing any signs of it.

Response From Sidom

I doubt it's a vacuum line, a leak that bad would more than likely cause the engine to die @ idle. If a sensor or wire was damaged or disconnected, more that likely would turn on the SES light...

Another thing you could check 1st which would be easier than checking the timing would be to check out the engine mounts, it possible they are just bad or got damage during the work..

Get a floor jack & block of wood & jack the engine up just enough to get the weight off when its in gear & vibrating, if the vibration goes away, you have some bad mounts....

Response From Discretesignals

Is that 405K on the original engine. If so, that is impressive.

Response From RAV4 Top Rated Answer

Yes, it is 405,550k miles. And I agree that it is impressive. It is the original engine with maintenance replacement parts. I'd say 85% of maintenance parts came from Toyota - 15% after market. It has been a great vehicle. I really like the body style of it also, its unique. The newer models, to me, look like mini highlanders. They also have the highlander engines in them. My 2000 model has the 2.0 camry engine from that same time period which is what I owned before this RAV4. I wish I would have held on to my 1992 camry, it was also a good car.
We jacked the car up as was suggested to check the mounts. There was very minimum vibration, if any, with the weight off the mounts. However, my mechanic husband still wants to verify the timing. I'm leaning toward it being the mounts. I guess we will know within a few days once he gets the chance to pull the cover and check the timing.

Response From Sidom

You know, I didn't even notice the mileage at 1st, that is pretty impressive but Toyotas do hold up pretty good if they are maintained & surprising well when abused.

If the vibration is gone when you jacked the engine then it looks like you've found your culprit. At that mileage I would be tempted to change out all the mounts.
It never hurts to double check your work but if it's running good other than at idle, the timing should be fine. You get a 4 cyl a tooth off one way or the other and it's' very noticeable to the driver, no matter what their level of experience. Now a 6 cyl you can one of the cams a tooth off & it's not as noticeable but will usually turn on the check engine light....

Response From Discretesignals

Your probably right that it is the engine mount(s) causing your vibration. The right hand isolator mount has to be taken off to get to the timing belt, so with the engine being supported and the isolator removed may have put some stress on the other mounts. Engine mounts do wear out or the rubber becomes dried up and breaks. With 405K and the age, mounts would be suspect.