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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I had the check engine light come on in my 2000 Toyota Avalon XLS (85000 miles) and I took the car to autozone and my local mechanice both of whom diagnosed the error code as P0420 - Catalyst System Efficiency Below Threshold ( Bank # 1). My mechanic said this problem was common on avalons and attributed the reason to the catalytic converter failure. He said it would cost me $ 630 /- for parts + $ 100 /- for labour to replace. Which In my opinion is too high. Has anyone faced a similar issue before ? There is no effect on the performance or MPG of the car. What could've gone wrong and how much will it cost me to fix ? Can I buy one from junkyard ? Also will it have any effect on the car in the long run ( besides failing the DMV Inspection) if I continue to drive without addressing this issue.
 

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Same situation

I realize that your post is a couple months back, but just thought I'd check in to see what you decided to do with your Cat problem. I just bought a 2000 xls avalon with 94,000 and I currently am running into the same situation with the code 420. I had the work priced out at 2 different non dealership shops and they both said that the work would cost $2000. to fix the catalytic converter problem and my worries would be over. The autozone guy recomended me to take it to the dealership and let thier computer check it out because it's much more advanced and geared specificaly to my car. I figured since I'm looking at spending 2000 to fix the problem, I better be sure that is really the problem. The toyota dealership charged me $97. to do the computer diag. but it turned out to be worth it! Yes, I do need to replace the catalytic converter....but not both of them. He said that the rear cat rarely goes bad through the life of an Avalon, but I need to replace the front Cat for sure. That knocked the price down for me, but he also said that the previous owner routinly must have overfilled the gas tank and therefore the charcoal filter also needed to be replaced. Turns out it's still going to cost me almost 2k, but I feel better about having confidence that the people doing the work have correctly diagnosed the problems. I'll let you know how things work out after I get this work done.
How did your situation work out?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
We're in the same boat !!!

He guess what ?? My post was just posted yesterday..less than 24 hrs ago and I am experiencing this issue since almost 2 weeks now...the autozone guys even reset the light for me but alas ! it came back again after about 120 miles....so do u feel , fuel could be an issue in the damage which is caused to the converter ?? My mechanic said that the Avalon's Cats are too sensitive by design and hence this is a common issue faced with our cars. I would like to know your experience in detail including more information on the CATS in the avalon and their part numbers...guess what I called a couple of toyota dealers today to reconfirm their estimates just for the parts and got a variety of different quotes ranging from $ 879 to $ 610 to $ 230 for the various cats and components confusing me thoroughly. Let me know if you want to talk more about this and we can even share our numbers and have more detailed discussions on phone to share our experiences. I am sure there is a lot for me to learn from sure experience!!! Do let me know how things go from here...
 

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I have a 2000 XLS too. I'm in the same situation. I'm not going to fix it anytime soon though.

The engine light came on three times last summer, but then stayed off for about 6 months. I came on again last month.

It is worth it to have a OBD scan tool to check the code and erase the code. Keep track of the occurances. Of course, driving around w/ the engine light always on is not a good solution.
 

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I just wanted to give a quick update on what I've done so far in hopes that it can help someone else out with thier situation. I had my charcoal canister replaced because they said it was leaking as well as the vacuum valve. I told the dealership not to replace the cat converter yet. My codes have been reset and I'm just going to wait and see if the engine light comes back on again with the familiar 420 code. I'm pretty sure that it will, but I thought that I might as well just give it a shot not having to replace the cat. Here are the part numbers as well as price that they gave me:
77740-06170 A0 CANISTER ASSY, CHARC $266.38
90910-12199 AO VALVE, VACUUM SWITCH $58.31
LABOR: $287.95
Total to replace canister and ccv including tax was $646.96

The total quote for the Cat Converter replacement (the cat up front) is $1128.55 including tax.
17410-0A220 PIPE ASSY, EXHA $610.83
90080-43036 GASKET, EXHAUST (2 needed) $24.70
17451-0A010 GASKET, EXHAUST $27.29

I'll post again to tell you if the light comes back on and what happens. I hope this helps out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
The light is gone on its own !!!

Well sprocketeer...thanks for all that info including the part #s...it would be of great help...The latest development from myside is that 2 days ago the check engine light has automatically turned itself off ( after i changed the gas station and drove for 110 miles since it had come on) and I took the car to my Mechanic again...he connected the scanner in which the code P0420 was still appearing despite the light being off....so he cleared the code and asked me to drive and see if it comes back again... Since the light has gone on its won..does that mean that I don't have a CAT problem anymore...have you heard about the CEL disappearing in such a case previously ??
Is there any emissions test or something which I can get done to know the health of the CAT ???

I have filled up Exxon Premium fuel to be on the safer side....my mechanic has also asked me to use fuel injector cleaner mixed with gas ...I'll also keep you updated with the progress !!

~A
 

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Problem with PO420

I have a 2000 Avalon and I keep getting the PO420 code. I have replaced my B1/S1, B1/S2, main cat and airmass flow sensor all in the last 8 months. The engine light keeps coming on and the code PO420. Toyota Dealership has checked it out twice and can not come up with the problem. Can anyone please help me out. I have had this car for 7 years and have never had any problems until now. I cant just keep replacing parts and not get rid of the code. Thanks in advanced for any help. The car is running great, the gas mileage is great just as good as it was 7 years ago and I have had no problems with the car until now.
 

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Get converter replaced in any muffler shop. I would say 250 would be right price including parts and labor.
Canister replacement cannot be more than 30 min job.
I only use dealerships for diagnosis and I pay usually 20-30 directly to the best mechanic there.
 

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I have a 1999 avalon with about 100200 miles and have had after market cat replaced already two times but now my light is back on also have replaced charcoal cannister and vac valve but light still comes on i cant believe i have 2 bad cats already and now a third. Can someone plz help me b-4 i go nuts or trade my car off i really love the car but this is rewally getting to me and my wallet.:headbang:
 

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I have a 1999 avalon with about 100200 miles and have had after market cat replaced already two times but now my light is back on also have replaced charcoal cannister and vac valve but light still comes on i cant believe i have 2 bad cats already and now a third. Can someone plz help me b-4 i go nuts or trade my car off i really love the car but this is rewally getting to me and my wallet.:headbang:
Have you tried changing the O2 sensor after the catalyst?
 

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re : Catalytic Converters

My garage destroyed the magnaflow headerback, Im trying to fin out if the catco catalytic conv. could bolt on.
Not without the frammerammer adapters that have been on backorder since Moses wore short pants. So I've been told................
 

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Factory diagnostic says to 1) repair any other codes than P0420, 2) check resistance of all O2 and A/f sensors. If all that is good replace all 3 cats: front, center, rear. With OE parts and labor it is over 2grand. Saving the planet ain't cheap.
 
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