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#1 Old 01-20-2012, 05:24 PM
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P0135 & p2237

First, I've gotta tell you I LOVE this site! You saved me a couple of months ago when the CEL & 2 codes showed Evap Fuel Sys probs. Made an appt w/dealer(est $180-480) then started researching codes on internet & found Toyotanation. After reading a posting about a similar situation & a hose being disconnected by the auto shop that changed the air filter, I was able to find it & fix it myself. Sweet!

I'm back now w/ a new, more complicated problem. Last October, I had all 3 operating belts replaced for the 1st time at 120K. Car ran fine, belts looked good, but I was being proactive(I've Kinda grown attached to the engine I have) Shortly after that, I started smelling a strong odor in the cabin of the car, as well as outside, near the passenger front tire area. To me it smells like exhaust/gasoline, but others have said it smells like something burning. When the car is idling, it is horrible. The smell has been getting steadily stronger. Then the CEL came on a few weeks back & stayed on for 2-3 days and then cleared itself.?. I thought that wasn't possible, but it did. Now the CEL is back on and the Codes are coming up P0135-O2 Sensor Heater Circuit & P2237-O2 Sensor Positive Current Control Circuit Open.

I am concerned that replacing the O2 sensor(s) will not fix the problem and they are evidently not cheap. Also, could this issue be related to the belt replacement & removal of the engine front-end?

'03 V6 Highlander

Last edited by old toyota blues; 01-20-2012 at 05:31 PM.
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#2 Old 01-20-2012, 07:06 PM
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Blues...I feel your pain. My '04 has had no problems except fricking emissions codes out the wazoo for last 18 months. OK..the real pain here is that you are dealing with Bank 1 sensor 1...a major pain to access (between engine and firewall). It's actually called an Air Fuel Ratio sensor. Normally I would suggest unplugging the sensor harness and measuring resistance across the two black wire terms at the sensor, but you can't get in there without removing half the engine so-to-speak, or removing the sensor altogether. AF/R & O2 sensors typically are not designed to last 120k miles. I replaced all of mine between 104-110k miles. Since your sensors are "over due" get a replacement for bank 1 sensor 1 to start. Go to Rockauto.com or amazon, etc. BUT, buy the DENSO brand. Buy the DENSO...again...buy the DENSO sensor. It's the OEM supplied sensor and it will work...and last. If like me, and you can't get this sensor out, take it to a shop and pay them to do it, (it cost me $85)and then ask them to inspect the wiring harness for damage, broken, loose pins/connections, etc. P2237 deals with an "OPEN" in the wiring harness or the like.
The smell is a different matter. Can you look closely with a strong light at the sides/edges of the belts, especially the timing belt and inspect for signs of melting or shredding. Believe me, if a belt is riding wrong in the pulley groove, you'll see evidence of it.
How does the engine perform while driving with this condition? Gas mileage?

2004 Highlander Limited 3.3L V6 AWD
140,000 + miles & going strong
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#3 Old 01-21-2012, 02:44 PM
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Thanks Hammer. I will most likely take your advice and replace the sensors because I'm getting the impression they are due for it, but I have a gut-feeling that there is more to the problem, or even a completely different problem causing the issue. First, there was the smell months before the CEL/codes that just started. It is definately not a belt or rubber smell of any kind, but I will check the belts again anyway. I don't smell plastic or wiring burn smell either. I'm pretty good at identifying smells. The smell is one of a very rich exhaust(more unburned gas than exhaust). When that evap fuel hose was off, the smell was very similar. I would have to say that the car is leaning very rich and my gas mileage is terrible. It seems to run ok for the most part, but the other day the engine hesitated while I was doing 65 on the highway and I have noticed periods of odd noises when it is cold.

I will give the other ideas you mentioned a look, but that may be a bit over my technical abilities. Plus, I have no shop or garage to work in. I have no problem "getting my hands dirty" and I use common sense, which is more than half the battle, but the days of old when I could work on my Chevy Bel Air or Corvette are long gone with all of the electronic & computerized components on the vehicles nowadays. I have a great, honest & trustworthy hometown mechanic here, but he is into the meat-n-potatoes of auto mecs and prefers to refer me to the dealer for more technical or hard-to-diagnose problems. God knows I hate being at their mercy! So if I'm going to keep this baby, I'd better learn alot real quick.
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#4 Old 01-21-2012, 07:14 PM
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I was in the same boat about 2 years ago when I was handed the keys to my wife's '04 with 100k miles, a leaking tire and the emissions related CELs started hitting me a week later. She did a good job getting it to the shop for routine service, but the emissions issues just plain suck, period. OK...so let's tackle bank 1 for now. I would order the AF/R sensor for bank 1 (sensor 1)and the post cat O2 sensor for bank 1 (sensor 2). Again get the DENSO. While you are waiting for these to arrive, remove and clean the MAF sensor and clean the throttle body as well. Have you ever done these? If not, it's pretty easy, and I can say with 99% certainty that cleaning the MAF (if this is the first time) will net you solid gains in fuel economy and overall engine performance. When I did mine at 105k miles, I went from getting 14.5 mpg to 19! I'm in sales, so I run the same routes most of the time and analyzing fuel mpg gets to be routine. BTW..I had purchased a Haynes Repair manual, and it is worthless on the emissions issues..it's great for most other issues.
So let me know if you need any pointers on the MAF cleaning & TB cleaning, what to use, etc. It would not hurt to re-check all vacuum hose connections either. Then when you get your sensors in, you can replace those and we'll see what happens on the CEL codes. One last bit of advice..there were some wrong part numbers for the AFR & O2 sensors listed on various auto-parts web sites. No matter where you buy them from, rockauto.com had the correct DENSO part numbers and should be a reliable point of reference. The DENSO web site should also list them correctly (obviously).

2004 Highlander Limited 3.3L V6 AWD
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#5 Old 01-22-2012, 08:46 PM
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Thanks again. Did quite a bit of searching yesterday for the Denso AF/R Sensor and the O2 Sensor. Started at RockAuto.com, but they did not have anything at all on the AF/R, only the O2. I was able to find the right parts nos. and cross-ref'd them at a few sites to be sure. I was able to get the O2 sensor for $57 & the AF/R for $95, but not at RockAuto. I will also get some anti-sieze for the sensor replacement. I talked to my son, who is an aviation mech and he agreed on our game plan and is reluctantly getting me his sensor socket from work in case I need it. He tries to help his old Mom out and his intentions are honorable, but he is crazy busy and I'd prefer not to have to rely on him doing this. Plus, I'm independent to a fault, so I'll likely be on my own. I will work on cleaning the MAF Sen & TB, which I have not done on this before, but should be OK with. I know they make an aerosol cleaner for the MAF & I'm assuming something similar to carb cleaner for the TB.?. I'll do some homework on that also. I will also ck the hoses when I can...we got a bit of snow dumped on us here. I noticed that the car is running louder than normal and the gas smell from the engine cavity is very strong. Kinda wondering how the smell is getting into the cabin of the car w/ the recirc button on.?. Thanks again for all of your time & input....it's invaluable to get advice from someone who has experience with the same issues.
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#6 Old 01-25-2012, 08:05 AM
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Your engine is the same as the Lexus RX300 so here is the procedure for the Idle Air Control valve...Read it carefully and try to take in any tips in this thread...good luck. by the way I have done this and it really smooths the idle as well as running on the car.
http://us.lexusownersclub.com/forums...c=7408&hl=iacv

Former RX300 move to Lexus RX400h
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