What did you do to your Avalon lately? - Toyota Nation Forum : Toyota Car and Truck Forums
Avalon 1st Generation (1995-1999) Specific discussion of the first generation Toyota Avalon

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post #1 of 549 Old 04-08-2012, 09:07 AM Thread Starter
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What did you do to your Avalon lately?

First project a week ago, I washed, clay barred, and attempted to remove all of the wax from the various rubber trims and seals, plus what was caked into every recessed surface on the car. After that I buffed with a clearcoat compound, followed by a machine applied polish, followed by a machine applied swirl remover, and finally hand waxed...whew! The car looks great compared to the condition it was in when purchased.
I followed the exterior with a quickie interior scrubbing, a thorough cleaning needs to happen but it will have to wait until more important projects are done. When I go at it later, I will be removing the front and rear seats so I can fully clean them along with the carpets.

Next project yesterday, was replacing the drivers side CV axle, not too bad of a job. While the car was in the garage, I replaced the brake pads and rotors on both the front and rear. Checked the calipers, they look good for now, if an issue arises, I will replace them. While apart I cleaned and lubed the slider pins.
With the car still in the garage yesterday, I was going to replace all of the cooling system hoses, but found I was missing a couple of heater hoses, so I drained the system and replaced the hoses I had and could easily access and filled with new coolant.
My manual arrived in the mail too late in the day to do much more, but now I know what I have to do to replace the remainder of the hoses, part of that is to acquire a intake gasket set so I can replace the hose that is under the upper intake manifold.
I also replaced the PCV valve and grommet.

Next up will be finishing off the cooling system, replace all four struts, and change out all under hood fluids.



Last edited by 9T6AvalonXLS; 04-17-2012 at 09:28 PM. Reason: Change title to "What did you do to your Avalon lately?"
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post #2 of 549 Old 04-11-2012, 12:53 AM
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Post pics.
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post #3 of 549 Old 04-11-2012, 12:10 PM
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Ditto, if you can, post some pics....



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post #4 of 549 Old 04-11-2012, 03:18 PM
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We should turn this thread into a "What Did You Do To Your Avalon Today?" for everyone to post, similar to what the Camry and Corolla forums have.
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post #5 of 549 Old 04-11-2012, 03:30 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pmesfun View Post
We should turn this thread into a "What Did You Do To Your Avalon Today?" for everyone to post, similar to what the Camry and Corolla forums have.
Not a bad idea. Done.
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post #6 of 549 Old 04-11-2012, 06:10 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pmesfun View Post
Post pics.
Quote:
Originally Posted by TrailDust View Post
Ditto, if you can, post some pics....
I will start doing that, I am terrible remembering to take pictures.
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post #7 of 549 Old 04-11-2012, 06:30 PM Thread Starter
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This was the last couple of nights project. I picked up these 1999 Avalon Platinum Edition Enkei wheels from a forum member, just happened to be located in IA also.
I had to rework the edges pretty substantially on three of the wheels, bead blasted them, epoxy primed, then base coat/clear coated them. I used a late model Ford Metallic Silver. I am so-so on the outcome, I should have spent more time but after all the car is 16 years old. I still need to complete the center caps, should have them done by the end of the weekend.

Before:




After:

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post #8 of 549 Old 04-11-2012, 06:46 PM Thread Starter
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This is one project I did that I almost forgot about. The retractable antenna had a kink approx. 8-10" from fully retracted, it was stuck in this position.
I ordered a replacement mast from ebay, received it and went to work. The replacement had approx. 8" too much nylon cord (for lack of a better term) cut it to match the original as close as possible and installed it. I did this repair before I had my service manual, probably would have been easier after the manual.
I took pictures through the disassembly but failed to take pictures on the reassembly.
I ended up taking the assembly completely apart, it was caked with old dirty grease. The antenna housing is made for water to drain through it and exit the bottom of the car through a plastic tube. In doing this, it gets a lot of dirt in it. I removed everything, cleaned it thoroughly, and repacked with new white grease.
I hand wound the new lead into the housing, at times taking three to four hands to hold things together.
Once reinstalled and connected, cycle your radio on and off, the antenna has a load sensor to determine when it is fully extended and retracted.

Access to the antenna:






Antenna disassembly:




Last edited by 9T6AvalonXLS; 04-11-2012 at 06:48 PM.
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post #9 of 549 Old 04-12-2012, 10:01 AM
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I cleaned and detailed the interior yesterday, looks brand new except for the steering wheel and shifter.
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post #10 of 549 Old 04-12-2012, 02:14 PM
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Don't mind the purple tint, I should be getting all the windows redone soon.
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post #11 of 549 Old 04-14-2012, 08:45 PM Thread Starter
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Today's project was replacing all four struts, and all associated hardware. Used a loaner strut spring compressor from O'reilly auto Parts, makes the spring r&r more of a challenge vs. a wall or bench mount compressor. The ride should be much improved, I could very easily compress the (what appeared to be original) front struts with no effort.
I vacuum pumped the old power steering fluid from the reservoir and refilled with new. I will likely do at least one probably two more drain and fills.
I drained the transmission, removed the filter. I am leaving it drip for the night, by time I removed the old gasket from the pan I didn't feel like getting back under the car. Tomorrow I will replace the filter, reinstall the pan, and fill with fluid.
I had Tire Rack drop ship a set of General Altimax HP's in 215/60/15 to a local tire shop. They are a Tire Rack authorized installer, have used them for years, great service. They mounted them to my Avalon Enkei wheels. Scheduled a alignment with them for later next week to make sure everything is tracking like it should.
On tap for tomorrow, finish the trans filter and fluid change and replace all four brake flex lines and flush the brake system. I sprayed all bleeders and flex line connections with a penetrate spray in hopes an easy dis-assembly and bleeding. Keeping my fingers crossed.

Old filter:
[IMG][/IMG]
[IMG][/IMG]

New filter, pan gasket:
[IMG][/IMG]

Trans with no filter:
[IMG][/IMG]

Trans with new filter:
[IMG][/IMG]

Last edited by 9T6AvalonXLS; 04-17-2012 at 09:33 PM.
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post #12 of 549 Old 04-15-2012, 08:46 AM
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Last week I finally got around to polishing my headlights. I used the Meguiar's PlastX headlight kit and it took only around 30 minutes including removing the headlights(Masking would've taken more time). Hopefully it lasts a while.


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post #13 of 549 Old 04-15-2012, 09:24 AM Thread Starter
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[QUOTE=Chunkywolf;3830115]Last week I finally got around to polishing my headlights. I used the Meguiar's PlastX headlight kit and it took only around 30 minutes including removing the headlights(Masking would've taken more time). Hopefully it lasts a while.[/QUOTE ]


Quite a difference, should improve night time visibility a lot.
Looks like your license plate cover needs it next.

Last edited by 9T6AvalonXLS; 04-15-2012 at 09:26 AM.
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post #14 of 549 Old 04-15-2012, 10:02 PM Thread Starter
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Today's Avalon DIY's:
Completed the transmission filter, pan gasket, and fluid change. Changed the engine oil and filter, replaced the brake flex lines at all four corners, flushed the brake fluid, scrubbed the rear seats and carpet since the seat was out for the strut install, installed my new tires and new to me wheels.
Took the car for a test drive, it rides considerably stiffer than before, not excessive but definitely stiffer. The car now sits at least an inch higher front and rear than before the strut replacement, has me wanting a set of lowering springs.
I should be pretty much done with the majority of the mechanical work, I still have the remainder of the cooling system hoses to replace once I acquire them, the alignment will be this Thursday. I need to finish the center caps for the wheels, considering a light window tint, and I need to remove the front seats to thoroughly clean them and the front carpet.

[IMG][/IMG]

Last edited by 9T6AvalonXLS; 04-17-2012 at 09:36 PM.
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post #15 of 549 Old 04-15-2012, 11:25 PM
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9T6AvalonXLS - What brand of struts did you put in? I know KYBs ride a bit harsh when new. But they break in nicely after a month or three. A lot of them do that, from what I hear.

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