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1st Generation (1995-1999) Specific discussion of the first generation Toyota Avalon

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Old 04-25-2005, 05:07 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Steering shaft universal joint

How many people have had to change the "intermediate shaft" in the steering? It consists of a pinch joint that attaches to the steering rack and a universal joint and another short shaft that attaches to the rag joint in the column under the dash. Altogether only about 8 or 10 inches long but expensive. My wife's 98 Avalon only has about 58 K miles on it and we are in the process of changing this item. Steering became quite stiff and removal showed that the one part of the universal joint is almost seized.
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Old 04-25-2005, 08:19 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Not very common, your the first I've heard of and I read about Avalons all the time
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Old 04-30-2005, 02:32 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Not Common that I've heard of...

I can tell you that i just replaced my steering rack because of a leak and had that whole assembly out. Mine has 160k miles on it and it showed no issues...

~Jon
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Old 04-30-2005, 05:56 PM   #4 (permalink)
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It appears that the part is not readily available in North America. Backordered in Canada and the USA.

I am going to resurrect the current one for now. I am soaking it in Varsol and it is loosening up. I will then soak it in oil and hope that it lasts for a while when I put it back in.
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Old 05-04-2005, 05:01 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by oldsub86
It appears that the part is not readily available in North America. Backordered in Canada and the USA.

I am going to resurrect the current one for now. I am soaking it in Varsol and it is loosening up. I will then soak it in oil and hope that it lasts for a while when I put it back in.

I'd soak it in some deasel fuel before in varsol. It is more like oil and very thin and it will take off rust nicely as well. Just my 2 cents.
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Old 12-03-2009, 07:23 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Intermediate shaft 4runner

Quote:
Originally Posted by oldsub86 View Post
How many people have had to change the "intermediate shaft" in the steering? It consists of a pinch joint that attaches to the steering rack and a universal joint and another short shaft that attaches to the rag joint in the column under the dash. Altogether only about 8 or 10 inches long but expensive. My wife's 98 Avalon only has about 58 K miles on it and we are in the process of changing this item. Steering became quite stiff and removal showed that the one part of the universal joint is almost seized.

Hi, been a while eh?

I wanted to know if that problem was resolved in the end?

My particular niggle is a little shake I get in the steering wheel of my 2001 4runner as a I go over certain types of bumps, for example crossing a railroad track (recessed, at 1 mph).

My mechanic just changed the inner tie rod that was bad on one side of the rack, and he thinks that, given that the whole steering system is ok, it might be the intermediate shaft inside the steering column

I would love to know if anyone else has experienced this
and how it was resolved

my mech has gone so far as to offer free labor


greetings from southern Chile
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Old 12-03-2009, 12:06 PM   #7 (permalink)
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We never really resolved the matter. I removed and re-lubed that joint twice and thought we would ultimately have to replace it. Unfortunately, the car was written off in an accident so we never got the chance to do so.

Beware of the ABS braking system. We believe that it failed and that is why the car was wrecked.

If you ever have the feeling that the brakes did not work when you step on them, have it checked out. Our car did it once before the wreck. My wife says she stepped on the brake and it did not feel like it was working. She let off on the brake and stepped on it again and it worked fine. That was in April of 2008. In August 2008, she pulled into a parking lot and stepped on the brake and it did not stop. It hit a bollard and did a lot of damage. She did not have the time or the presence of mind to let off and step on the brake again that time.

We have spoken with mechanics who say this is not uncommon with ABS. Not just on Toyotas but on most vehicles. They are all a similar design. If a valve in the ABS controller sticks, then the computer does not brake because it does not sense a wheel locked up, but unfortunately, it prevents you from braking normally.

Randy
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Old 12-04-2009, 09:16 AM   #8 (permalink)
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well, good thing that there were no injuries there!
sounds very scary.

thanks for the heads up.

I think being slightly maniacal about proper maintainence and strange noises (and having an understanding and experienced mechanic for the tough stuff) really helps avoiding those things.

on a chevy luv pickup I have, I took it in because of a grinding noise on the front driveshafts when turning in 4wd...
luckily, upon inspection he discovered a previous very bad brake job, extremely thin rotor, and missing bolts in a caliper!
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