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socratez

2010 1.8 petrol: Check parking brake + VSC + Engine warning lights

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I own an Avensis 1.8L TR Valvematic and have a few MILs illuminated (VSC, Parking Brake, Engine, Attention), on and off for the last 2 weeks. I say 'on and off' because I have reset them a couple of times.

For the experts in the forum:

I bought an ELM327 and I am reading the following DTCs with the free 'Car Scanner' software:

- stored P1047. [Google says: Type: Powertrain - MFC controlled DTC. Descr: Camshaft position (CMP) actuator, exhaust circuit malfunction. Location: Right/Rear/Bank 1. Cause: Wiring, Camshaft Position (CMP) actuator]

- stored U011B [Google says: Type: Network - Network Communications - ISO/SAE Controller. Descr: Lost communication with Rocker ARM Controller Module "A".]

- P0210 ??

- C07C1 ??

Took the vehicle to a local mechanic who, in addition to the first two DTCs above (P1047 + U011B) and with a professional grade OBD2, read the following:

- C1201 Engine control system Malfunction (EPB and ABS sections of OBD2)

- C13A7 Actuator malfunction (EPB section of OBD2)

- (... few others that he considered side-effects...)

All these MILs came up the morning after a good jet wash (exterior, no engine). I also noticed a burnt rear left license plate light, which I have changed myself. I don't know if it is related or when it happened. I passed MOT in March and have been servicing the car religiously every year.

I own the car first hand, bought 03/2010, clocked only 55k miles and have had almost zero issues so far (EPB failed and replaced during warranty in 2013).

It still drives well despite the warnings, i.e., no power loss (except for the first time when I got the warning lights, speed limited to 20-30 mph), no other unusual noises, etc.

I would appreciate your comments.

 

@Johngh

@Nave

I have seen the older thread of yours here:

I am CC'ing you to ask your views on the repair you described. Did you ever face any issues since August 2016 that you may think are related to the problem(s) you described? I am trying to get some reassurance from you two and, if needed, drive up to Powerhouse Derby for a similar repair. Thanks for documenting your course of action so well.

 

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P1047 and U011B point to a faulty Valvematic controller. Not unusual on this engine at 60-100k miles. Usually there is some power loss. Costly repair.

The other code relates to the EPB actuator - bane of the T27.   Needs replacement.

Not sure what more to say. You can clear codes and see if they stay off, but......

 

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Thanks, @mrfixer

You say "usually there is some power loss". I am not experiencing this currently, except for the first time the warning lights came up when the engine throttled to 20-30 mph. If the Valvematic controller was the problem wouldn't the power loss be noticeable at all times? Somehow, I get the feeling the warnings were triggered by that jet wash, pointing to an electrical/electronics failure. (Does this sound plausible? Sorry, not knowledgable enough about car mechanics, hence the newbie questions.)

What also surprises me are the EPB faults (Cxxxx) that have come up together with the P1047/U011B. Would the service garage not have captured the EPB ones earlier. I just cannot believe they were there and no one noticed. I would repeat here that I am not feeling any issues with the EPB, it sounds and operates OK, as far as I can tell.

If the fault is with the Valvematic controller, would anyone recommend 2nd hand parts or a braker in London? I am conscious of the high cost you mentioned.

Thank you again for all your comments.

 

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I am not an expert by a long stretch, but  have experienced a few EPB issues, and they always seem to be related to something else. some pro level diagnostics though good, don't always get everything specific to a particular brand or model, especially if they are not updated. I use Techstream, and that is the best being Toyota's own diagnostic software. I used my Launch diagnostic tool which I wrongly thought it could reset my EPB after a brake pad change, but it wiped the clutch and g-force zero point setting (I known your car is auto) -

.  
If you read my reply in the post above, you will note that Techstream was my saviour. I think your diagnostics results are fairly accurate, and just needs to test the various components, to confirm the actual fault. Electrical and electronic faults can be a pain to find in modern cars.
You mention the fault happened after jet wash. The problem with high pressure water, is the water can get through any openings without you knowing it happening. Check all the rear lights and earthing, plus all earths around the car. Look for any damaged wiring. Check all the connections and plugs. I would pull the Battery for a few minutes, to see if it will clear the ECUs. You will have to drive the car to relearn the engine profiles. Basically try any cheap fixes before moving to big fixes. I hope it's not the cam/vvti controllers!   

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There is no simple answer. You are looking at two potentially very expensive repairs. I would be inclined to go to a Toyota dealer and ask for diagnostics.

The Valvematic controller failure seems fairly common. If you jet washed that area of the engine then that could be the cause - but you say you didn't.  Breakers are unlikely to want to sell the Valvematic seperately from the engine. And a secondhand unit could have limited life left. I think a new unit is the way to go. The demand is high and you can buy them direct from dealers in Japan at a discount - but long shipping time.

EPB fault could be due to water ingress - but seems to be a common failure. Another stupid piece of technology ("hey, let's replace this £15 cable and lever with a £1000 system of motors and microprocessor")

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12 minutes ago, mrfixer said:

EPB fault could be due to water ingress - but seems to be a common failure.

what is common? If you make enough of something then even a very low failure rate (e.g.. 0.1%) will mean that may thousands or tens of thousands will fail.

Another stupid piece of technology ("hey, let's replace this £15 cable and lever with a £1000 system of motors and microprocessor")

It's the way that they are all going though apart from on very small cars (where presumably they can't support the additional cost?). It allows for better interior packaging & supports things like hill hold etc.

 

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2 hours ago, Heidfirst said:

 

Sorry, have to disagree.  

I retired last year after 30+ years in the automotive industry, most of it spent designing automotive electronic/mechatronic systems. Done work for most of the big players (Lucas, Bosch, AP, GM, JLR etc). Last few years working overseas, mainly as a consultant to Chinese.

Some systems are a great boon to the driver (ABS, ESC) whereas others are a pain in the backside (EPB). I have some idea of the failure rate of these systems.

The first EPBs were developed by Kuester of Germany. Other companies like Aisin followed their lead. All the cable-pull systems are very similar and IMHO are a pretty lousy design.

Basically there will be a pair of conventional rear calipers with parking brake applied via cables.. The cables then disappear into the actuator box.  Actuation is achieved via a brushed DC motor which pulls on the cables via a turnbuckle-and-screw arrangement through a set of plastic reduction gears (and usually some kind of overload clutch). A PCB inside the actuator box contains the microprocessor and motor drive circuits. There are several variants of software and hardware depending on model/year.

These units fail for several reasons:

1. Sooner or later the brushed motor wears out.

2. Seizure of the cables or calipers causes the drive mechanism to be overloaded (sometimes you can hear the overload clutch squealing). Damage to mechanism and/or burnt out motor.

3. Failure of the drive circuit (particularly the switching relay which basically wears out).

4. Water damage to the PCB.

The best thing you can do is check that calipers and cables are all moving freely. As a minimum a yearly check that the rear calipers are sliding freely and the pads are not sticking in the carriers, and cables moving freely with rubber boots intact.

If you do have an actuator failure then maybe see if you can achieve a repair. I know of one company who can repair Kuester units (Blue Chip Autotronics), maybe worth asking if they can do anything with the Aisin units (which are v. v. similar).

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10 hours ago, Konrad C said:

some pro level diagnostics though good, don't always get everything specific to a particular brand or model, especially if they are not updated. I use Techstream, and that is the best being Toyota's own diagnostic software. I used my Launch diagnostic tool which I wrongly thought it could reset my EPB after a brake pad change, but it wiped the clutch and g-force zero point setting (I known your car is auto) -

Thanks @Konrad C. The local garage I went to yesterday used Launch. I was observing the tablet: it found my exact engine model, I assume this means its database was 'updated'. I take your advice that a Techstream would give more trusted readings. I guess taking the car to Toyota for diagnostics should be my next step, as @mrfixer suggested. The last time I spoke with Currie Motors in south London they quoted "£150 per warning light"! Any advice how to approach this would be appreciated. I just cannot flush £600 for the codes, there has to be some logical order for the investigation. I guess I should start with the engine light (for the P1047)?

10 hours ago, Konrad C said:

You mention the fault happened after jet wash. The problem with high pressure water, is the water can get through any openings without you knowing it happening. Check all the rear lights and earthing, plus all earths around the car. Look for any damaged wiring. Check all the connections and plugs.

On a simple eye check, if that's what you meant, all lights are working OK. Including the license plate one I replaced. I've done a basic check on the fusebox with a multimeter and all seem OK. My knowledge ends here, I would like to do earth checks myself around the car, but don't know how. Any tips or links welcome.

10 hours ago, Konrad C said:

 I would pull the battery for a few minutes, to see if it will clear the ECUs. You will have to drive the car to relearn the engine profiles.

I believe I achieved the equivalent of disconnecting the Battery by pulling the DCC fuse, isn't it? I realised afterwards that most readings were zeroed (average consumption, time on the road, unreliable estimate for remaining fuel mileage, etc.) But the radio did not lose the stored stations, I guess I only reset part of the circuitry that would not erase the codes? I have driven quite a bit since I pulled that fuse and the car seems to have caught up again (as I can tell by the average consumption figure). 

The mechanic erased the codes with the Launch yesterday. After two warm ups, 7 miles later, they came on again today. I read the same 2 codes with my cheapo ELM327 today: P1047 + U011B.

7 hours ago, mrfixer said:

I think a new unit is the way to go. The demand is high and you can buy them direct from dealers in Japan at a discount - but long shipping time.

Any idea what the shipping time might be, @mrfixer? Are we talking months or weeks here?

I wonder if the Powerhouse up in Derby could deal with this, once I get a full diagnosis from Toyota? I've read so much positive about them in this forum.

10 hours ago, Konrad C said:

I hope it's not the cam/vvti controllers!  

Hope so, too! It does make one wonder and question the Toyota brandname. I always thought they are reliable and wouldn't say they have faulted me in the past 9 years. But to have to almost scrap a car (why fork £3k for repairs?) at 55,000 miles sounds ridiculous. 

Thank you all again for your info, this forum is really helpful.

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3 hours ago, mrfixer said:

Sorry, have to disagree.  

with what? My assertion that it is the way that the industry is moving apart from on small cars or that it helps designers with interior packaging & supports features like hill hold?

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I did some googling and here is something I found in a Turkish Toyota forum:

https://www.toyotaclubtr.com/index.php?topic=82295.0

The mechanic there changed the Oil Valve Controller and looks like the problem went away. Are we talking about the same thing here?

 

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On 5/26/2019 at 12:30 PM, Konrad C said:

I would pull the battery for a few minutes, to see if it will clear the ECUs.

Hi @Konrad C,

I did as you suggested, disconnected the Battery for several minutes. DTCs gone on reconnection. What is the significance of this? Pointing to a smaller electrical problem, or otherwise?

Haven't driven the car around yet to recalibrate profiles, etc.

Forgot to say: I've noticed that when I press the rear window defogger button when car is not moving, revs drop from ~630 down to ~520-550. I'm only experiencing this drop with the defogger, not with other electrical components in operation (such as radio, A/C, etc). Is this drop normal?

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The car normally revs up to compensate for the power drain, if this is happening after you disconnected the Battery, it's not that much surprising.

After you reconnect the Battery, car should idle for 10 minutes or so, then take it for a drive, it should be fine after that.

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19 hours ago, socratez said:

Hi @Konrad C,

I did as you suggested, disconnected the battery for several minutes. DTCs gone on reconnection. What is the significance of this? Pointing to a smaller electrical problem, or otherwise?

Haven't driven the car around yet to recalibrate profiles, etc.

Forgot to say: I've noticed that when I press the rear window defogger button when car is not moving, revs drop from ~630 down to ~520-550. I'm only experiencing this drop with the defogger, not with other electrical components in operation (such as radio, A/C, etc). Is this drop normal?

The DTC's are off because the fault code has been cleared or erased. The DTC's could return if the fault is still present, if the parameters are not met. This may happen when driving! 
The Valvematic engine has two controllers as shown in the following picture -AVENSIS |  CYLINDER HEAD

The part numbers begin with 11101J - http://www.japan-parts.eu/toyota/eu/2010/avensis/zrt271r-aefepw/2_273560_038_410W/tool-engine-fuel/1104_cylinder-head#11101J

I am not sure how they fail, but to help prevent any possible problems, I stick to using 0W-20 grade fully synthetic Oil and do regular Oil changes.

Let's hope it is not expensive to fix. 

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Just an update on my problems, in case this is helpful to anyone else in the future. I am trying a number of 'cheap fixes' first as some of you suggested:

- It's been almost a month now that I have been observing the symptoms. There is a pattern: Engine warning lights (plus VSC+PBK) go off after a couple of days. Then on again after a week or so, or after a number of miles driven (city mainly) with consistent DTCs P1047 + U011B.

- Cleaned MAF sensor, just in case, it didn't make any difference. Did not look bad at all when removed.

- I have invested on a Techstream adaptor clone and will do the diagnostics again when it arrives.

- Off to change Oil to the Toyota recommended 0w20 this weekend. 

- @Konrad C: wonder if your suggestion is worth doing, easy for DIYers:

On 5/29/2019 at 10:19 AM, Konrad C said:

- It does look more like a replacement of the variable lift controller for me as @mrfixer initially suggested, but still hoping to get some further diagnostics done, plus test for power failure to the sensor.

- There is a LOAD of info I have obtained from numerous Russian sites, highlights below. Some fellows there are very enthusiastic and have taken the variable lift controller off the engine. Either replaced it themselves with new part or some claim to have been able to fix it. Problem is apparently related to high temperatures and age. One guy blames the led-free factory soldering of the electronic components, which makes them crack under varying temperatures; they've been able to open the kit and re-soldered it with success. Pretty amazing. Which reminds me, my problems started after a 450 mile trip at ~33 C (in the UK!) in congested motorways. Over 6 hours of driving. Not sure whether this is the cause of my issues, but seems consistent to what the Russians are reporting.

Same engine and variable lift ECU in the RAV4 and few other models:

https://instadigg.com/p/1958847326555990504_6180271962

There's this guy in Tomsk who tests them:

 

Removing the valvematic ECU:

 

 

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From what I've heard, the fault arises either due to failure of the soldered joints on the controller PCB or failure of a sensor within the unit. If you can remove the controller then a competent electronics technician could reflow the joints.

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This is the issue Ive got with mine.66 reg plate. Sorry if I cant be of any help.

CHECK PARKING BRAKE SYSTEM came on the dashboard, along with engine warning light, master warning, break pads light.

Car is 28k miles, 1.6 d4d, I am using it in weekends as a taxi since April 2019, done cca 4000 miles as a taxi.

Took it to Toyota, they said that the fault doesn't have to do with the breaks, is just to make the owner bringing the car in.

Diagnosis: MAP filter had to be cleaned 

It happened 3 times in 2 weeks. Warning came back after couple of miles each time after taking it to Toyota.

3rd time they are saying that the manifold is clogged with carbon, cannot be cleaned, replacement is very expensive and basically they advised me to part exchange the car.

They are blaming on the fact that I use it as a taxi. I don't use start/stop, always changing gears at  at least 2000rpm, at least 150 miles motorway weekly.

Are they right saying that the warranty doesn't cover the job?

Any thoughts on what my options are?

Many thanks in advance.

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socratez, you were talking about cheap fixes, and checking earth connections and disconnecting the Battery. Just throwing my penny into the post pot. When you disconnect the Battery take the Battery out, as I found an earth connection under the Battery which can be cleaned and greased. Also clean the connector to the valvematic controller and then grease it with dielectrics. 

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13 hours ago, IonutMaxim said:

CHECK PARKING BRAKE SYSTEM came on the dashboard, along with engine warning light, master warning, break pads light.

Hi Maxim, did you save the fault codes? Which Toyota did you bring your car to?

For the record, I'm now using 0w20 Oil but warnings are still coming on for a couple of days  then off again for a couple of weeks. I've driven the car on the motorway at 80mph for 1-2 hours, no perceived loss of power.

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52 minutes ago, m456an said:

I found an earth connection under the battery which can be cleaned and greased

Many thanks @m456an, will try this tip next.

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Hi Socratez, I used Johnsons Toyota Liverpool, they've done the full service as well on the car.

The fsuk code found is P00BD - fault caused by carbon build in manifold/egr cooler etc

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