yaqub

04 Avensis now using approx 3 litres of oil a week+

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Hi all,

I have a 2004 Toyota Avensis HATCHBACK - 1.8 VVT-i T3-X 5dr and it has been in my family since showroom.

Generally can't fault the car one bit. Nice smooth comfortable cruiser on the motorway, has a ton of decent features for a 15 year old car. I found the build quality to be great and repairs minimal and inexpensive.

Over the last couple years things have started to change as the mileage has increased. Currently it is on about 90k, with about 35k done in the last 2 years. During this time I've noticed a gradual increase in Oil consumption. Initially it started off using all the Oil in about 2-3 months, then slowly moved to 6 weeks and this year has jumped to every four weeks and now every 2 weeks. The car only ever indicated low Oil when it was pretty much empty, and since last year I've made sure to check the dipstick every week. 

The car has been to my local mechanic, he's been my go to guy and has never let me down on repairs. I've always told him about the Oil consumption, He's checked for Oil leaks and did not find anything, I took it to him again today because I couldn't believe how much it was burning and again no signs of any leak. He recommended I replace the car 😥. It has been well looked after and passes MOTs first time. Decent fuel consumption, no lights on dash, all electrics work fine, and no exhaust smoke either. Headlights are dim but I've come to understand from this forum that it is normal for my model.

I'm constantly using it for long drives across the UK and it mostly seems fine other than the Oil consumption. I've come across a thread that mentions one avensis engine using a lot of Oil but not sure if that engine is the one in my car.  

To summarise above and a couple other points, below are 3 problems I'm facing

  1. Heavy Oil consumption, every 2 weeks I'm having to fill it up again
  2. Car goes in to 3rd-4th gear without using the clutch and carries on driving as normal
  3. Chain rattle on left hand side of the car under heavy acceleration.

That's pretty much everything about the car. What do you think and what would you recommend I do? If I keep driving it, will there be bigger problems relating to the Oil consumption?

Many thanks

Yaqub

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4 hours ago, Shavestick said:

Oh, wow. I did try using the search facility but never came across anything so detailed. 

As long as Oil is in the car, is there anything I need to be worried about? 

Not sure what to do in regards to repairing/replacing

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Hi Yaqub. I would have been surprised if you had bought the car more recently and not researched the car, and the notorious Oil burning issue of the 1.8 1ZZ vvti engine. The Toyota forum was busy with this problem, though this is less now, due to age of cars and updates and fixes. I suspect the reason you were aware, is because the engine was not using Oil so early in it's life, like the worse examples. You got are only having the problem now.

There are a few options, but it depends on how much it costs and what you are willing to pay.

Get a second hand engine from a 2006 on car with reasonable mileage. 2006 to 2008 when the facelift had the good 1ZZ 1.8 engine which were modified to cure the high Oil consumption problem. the internals were upgraded. You need to verify the engine is from a late car, plus it is lowish mileage.

Have the internals upgraded - new pistons and rings, extra Oil channels added. More expensive due to the higher labour.

Cheapest but may not work is the have engine flushed, and use good quality Oil or change to a slightly thicker grade. Change Oil more often. 

As I said seven years ago when, I dodge a bullet when I had my first Avensis, because it  was the older 1.8 7AFE leanburn engine. I had that car from 2003 until February 2016 and the engine had no problems when I sold it at close to 150k miles. The later engine 1.8 vvti came along from 1999 and was update late 2005. Then they were fine until 2009 when production switched to 1.8 valvematic engine. My current 1.8 Tourer has 85k and no issues. I hardly have to top up the Oil between changes. I just change the engine Oil and filter a few days ago. I change the Oil annually.

It's up to you, if you really like the car and car source a late engine (2006 - 2008), otherwise try the Oil flush and change to a suitable grade, in the hope that the Oil consumption reduces.   

  

 

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My 04 1.8 Avensis was burning Oil at 500 miles per 0.5 litres after only 50k miles.

When I read up on this on the forum and elsewhere it was thought that the Oil clogging the rings could be relieved to some extent by the followuing measures.

1 Top up the Oil level 10mm above the full mark to have an extra 0.5 L in circulation -this lower the Oil temperature a little.and helps.

2 Be sure to use only the recommended 5/30 sae Oil rather than thicker Oil in the mistaken belief it will burn less.

3 Use premium grade petrol as this contains higher level of detergents which help keep the rings clean.

I tried these measures and it reduced my Oil consumption from 0.5l per 1000 miles down to perhaps the same usage in 4000 miles. That was over 6 months and when I reverted to ordinary unleaded the Oil consumption slowly reverted back over a few months. Worth a try before fitting another engine.

The higher Oil level never showed any problems i.e. smoke on steep uphill, downhill or hard cornering. Probably more frequent Oil changes and maybe fully synthetic Oil is also worth considering. Good luck with it.

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Thank you both for responding in such detail, appreciate it!

I'm burning through the Oil so fast, I never need to change it.😅 The car only covered 25k after 10 years, no wonder the problem didn't show up. 

I once overfilled the Oil on the car by about 2 litres. The car was on a flat surface, engine off for about 30 minutes and poured 3L in, only to find I had overfilled. Mechanic advised I keep driving and eventually it will burn away. There were no apparent problems that arose from overfilling on that one occasion but I'm still confused as to why it would happen. 

I have also run the engine dry once by mistake, engine got loud and felt rough. I didn't think Oil would be the problem as I wasn't aware of the engine defect and had the car fully serviced 3 weeks prior. It's only when I had to emergency brake I noticed the Oil light flash on the dash. Quickly, pulled into the petrol station and filled it up with Oil. Not sure if this caused any problems but no obvious signs of damage.  

For the last couple weeks, I've been using premium grade fuel and have filled up with a Castrol fully synthetic 5w-30 Oil. I feel that certain premium fuels work better than others and the Oil I use works better than the one my mechanic puts in; but maybe that's just all in the head. Will have to wait and see how much better it performs.

I've decided to keep the car as it is until it becomes too costly to repair. There seems to be a gearbox issue alongside the defective engine. I don't know what car I'll be getting but I'll cross that bridge when I get there.

Last couple questions, if the car has sufficient Oil and is covering about 2000+/- miles per month, can there be any engine defect related breakdowns I'm unaware of? Or am I ok to drive it as normal? I drive the car all over the UK with no problems but not sure if it is a good idea in the long run.

Thanks again

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On 8/7/2019 at 12:19 AM, yaqub said:

Thank you both for responding in such detail, appreciate it!

I'm burning through the oil so fast, I never need to change it.😅 The car only covered 25k after 10 years, no wonder the problem didn't show up. 

I once overfilled the oil on the car by about 2 litres. The car was on a flat surface, engine off for about 30 minutes and poured 3L in, only to find I had overfilled. Mechanic advised I keep driving and eventually it will burn away. There were no apparent problems that arose from overfilling on that one occasion but I'm still confused as to why it would happen. 

I have also run the engine dry once by mistake, engine got loud and felt rough. I didn't think oil would be the problem as I wasn't aware of the engine defect and had the car fully serviced 3 weeks prior. It's only when I had to emergency brake I noticed the oil light flash on the dash. Quickly, pulled into the petrol station and filled it up with oil. Not sure if this caused any problems but no obvious signs of damage.  

For the last couple weeks, I've been using premium grade fuel and have filled up with a Castrol fully synthetic 5w-30 oil. I feel that certain premium fuels work better than others and the oil I use works better than the one my mechanic puts in; but maybe that's just all in the head. Will have to wait and see how much better it performs.

I've decided to keep the car as it is until it becomes too costly to repair. There seems to be a gearbox issue alongside the defective engine. I don't know what car I'll be getting but I'll cross that bridge when I get there.

Last couple questions, if the car has sufficient oil and is covering about 2000+/- miles per month, can there be any engine defect related breakdowns I'm unaware of? Or am I ok to drive it as normal? I drive the car all over the UK with no problems but not sure if it is a good idea in the long run.

Thanks again

Right now Halford are selling Castrol oils like Magnatec for half price for 4 litres. They have the grades you use, unfortunately for me not my grade. So long as the engine has not suffered any damage when low on Oil, it should be okay. Any problems are likely to be age related, like perished rubber components. 

 

If I were you, I would look for a late Mk2 T25 face-lift. The engine was cured of the high Oil consumption from late 2005! You could get a 1.8 TR spec quite cheaply. 

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Maybe try different specs, that may not be recommend by Toyota? 

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