Toyota Nation Forum banner

1 - 16 of 16 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
35 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
A couple of nights ago (dry road, no rain) , when I depressed the brake pedal on my 2017 Camry XLE to slow down when approaching a traffic light, the brake pedal hit the floor with a noise and did not brake. I was already driving slow and there was no car in front of me luckily, but I did panic. I hit the brake again hard and the car stopped a little short of hitting the cross traffic. After that, the display panel showed a car image with skid lines, which I believe is the Stability Control Indicator. That indicator was on till I got home that night, about a quarter mile from that traffic light. The next day when I started the car, that 'car with skid lines' indicator had disappeared.
I took the car in to Service for this issue and for my 6 month/5000 mile service on Saturday. The Service Manager said if the Stability control light had come on there would be an event recorded in the log and they can see why this happened. But this morning, they are calling me to pick up the car saying that there is NO event of the Stability light coming on in 'the log' and since they weren't there when the issue happened, they don't really know what happened! (I really doubt if they checked thoroughly because the Service woman who took the repair order is telling me that this could have happened because it rained that night, but it didn't. This was actually exasperating!)
Is this an acceptable answer? I'm just concerned because Toyota had these brake issues before and to see that my brakes didn't work on a clear night, on a dry road is worrisome. What are the next steps, please, if anyone had this same issue happen to them?
(There is also another issue of the car not starting at the first attempt when pressing brake + START button, not sure if it's a related issue).
 

·
Photojournalist
2012 Camry LE
Joined
·
1,798 Posts
Screw the light. Screw the event.
If your brakes failed to the floor they need to LOOK for why.

Also, go to NHTSA and post an event with them. There may be others.

I really dislike service writers that have never worked on a car.

Sent from my STH100-1 using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
441 Posts
If you have lost brake fluid , it could be a leak in one of the brake lines or hoses or calipers.Check the brake fluid levels and look for leaks on the ground when you park the car. With no fluid lose , it could be the master cylinder selas leaking internally. I would get a second opinion. To keep brakes good, I flush to exchange all the brake fluid every 2 years.Brake fluid should be clear or light amber, If it is dark like coffee, you are due for a flush/ exchange of all the fluid in the system. If a pedal goes down really low, you need to release the pedal and see if you can pump it to get some pressure and to get the brakes to work.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
68 Posts
Don't take the push off from the dealer. A 6 month old car under warranty that fails to brake needs more attention than that. When I get that nonsense, I say, yeah, that is the wrong answer. Brakes are the most important part of that car. They need to do a complete physical test, visual inspection and computer check of the braking system. Do not take no for an answer. Go to another dealer if you have to.

I have a 2017 XLE and find it hard to believe a code wasn't stored. I have a habit of rolling my car into the driveway at night without starting it and if the brakes are wet when they finally catch, I will get a check brake system light that stays on for about 20 minutes of driving. It clears itself of active issue status, but the record of every event is still in memory when I check via techstream.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
35 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Screw the light. Screw the event.
If your brakes failed to the floor they need to LOOK for why.

Also, go to NHTSA and post an event with them. There may be others.

I really dislike service writers that have never worked on a car.

Sent from my STH100-1 using Tapatalk
Thanks, I just posted a complaint with the NHTSA and got a tracking #
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
35 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Don't take the push off from the dealer. A 6 month old car under warranty that fails to brake needs more attention than that. When I get that nonsense, I say, yeah, that is the wrong answer. Brakes are the most important part of that car. They need to do a complete physical test, visual inspection and computer check of the braking system. Do not take no for an answer. Go to another dealer if you have to.

I have a 2017 XLE and find it hard to believe a code wasn't stored. I have a habit of rolling my car into the driveway at night without starting it and if the brakes are wet when they finally catch, I will get a check brake system light that stays on for about 20 minutes of driving. It clears itself of active issue status, but the record of every event is still in memory when I check via techstream.
Thank you for this. What is techstream and where do I check it?

I'm pretty sure that several indicators showed up on the display when the brake failed, but I only remember the 'car with skid lines' indicator which was the 4th image in a series of indicators. Next time I will take a picture (hopefully, there won't be another time this fails).

I just got off the phone with the Service Manager and I asked him what you had mentioned .. if they did the "Complete physical test, visual inspection and computer check of the braking system".

He said they did what they do usually for 6 month Service
+ a Health check (does this include a brake check?)
+ a Road Test
and they found no issues, or no logs of the 'car skid indicator light'. He tells me if that skid indicator disappeared after showing for a while then whatever caused the brake to fail got fixed on its own. I asked him specifically if they did a computer check of the brakes and he said that's what the Health Check is for. Is there anything else I should ask them to check before I pick up the car?

Appreciate all your responses.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
68 Posts
Thank you for this. What is techstream and where do I check it?

I'm pretty sure that several indicators showed up on the display when the brake failed, but I only remember the 'car with skid lines' indicator which was the 4th image in a series of indicators. Next time I will take a picture (hopefully, there won't be another time this fails).

I just got off the phone with the Service Manager and I asked him what you had mentioned .. if they did the "Complete physical test, visual inspection and computer check of the braking system".

He said they did what they do usually for 6 month Service
+ a Health check (does this include a brake check?)
+ a Road Test
and they found no issues, or no logs of the 'car skid indicator light'. He tells me if that skid indicator disappeared after showing for a while then whatever caused the brake to fail got fixed on its own. I asked him specifically if they did a computer check of the brakes and he said that's what the Health Check is for. Is there anything else I should ask them to check before I pick up the car?

Appreciate all your responses.

So, when I bought the car and joined this site, I noticed that people here were talking about Techstream. It is the Toyota diagnostic software the dealer uses to check your car. It is software on a PC with a cable that plugs in under your dashboard. Health check is a feature of this software which runs through all the systems of the car and checks to make sure the various sensors are reporting everything in the range it should be. Think of the results of your blood, stool and urine tests. It highlights active errors (you had none), but also keeps a memory log of errors that have posted and have cleared.

Techstream is really for auto service folks and it costs a fortune when purchased legally. However, if you go to amazon or ebay and search for "mini vci toyota techstream" you will find cables that plug into your PC for about $15-$20 which include a bootlegged version of the software, which you can also find online. Unless you are willing to plug pirated software into your car and have some tech and auto repair savvy or interest, it is not something most would recommend
you doing and you are using pirated software which isn't exactly legal and might expose your car to some malware in the worst case. The software will allow you to read active and logged errors, program new keys and TPMS sensors should they go bad and will save some money and a trip to the dealer. It will allow you to adjust various settings on your car.

I still find it hard to believe an error code(s) is not in the log. They don't have to run the entire "Health check" which tests all the systems again, but I would ask them specifically to run just the check of the braking system again and look for logged error codes. Remind them you actually had a real world brake failure which led to a light on the dash. Error codes come and go all the time and since most are not serious and don't require followup, service guys tend to say "don't worry about it, you'll be fine dear". BUT, the loss of braking you experienced followed by an error code with the computer confirming what you felt is a real problem. Doesn't mean it will happen again, but something unexpected happened which both you and the car sensed. Even if you weren't under warranty, it would need to be checked thoroughly, but since you are and it costs you nothing, you really have no excuse. Remember, Toyota is not going to want to settle a multi million dollar wrongful death suit either, so they would give you the same advice.

That said, you could well be totally fine with regard to the error codes. As I said, if I jam on the brakes when rolling with the engine off, the brakes will display an error for the next 15 - 20 minutes of driving. You might have just annoyed one of the sensors when you slammed on them. The real issue is that the brakes did not engage the first time around - that is the real issue. The error light trigger may have just been a result of the second brake attempt when you slammed them.

Good luck and stay safe.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
35 Posts
Discussion Starter #8
That said, you could well be totally fine with regard to the error codes. As I said, if I jam on the brakes when rolling with the engine off, the brakes will display an error for the next 15 - 20 minutes of driving. You might have just annoyed one of the sensors when you slammed on them. The real issue is that the brakes did not engage the first time around - that is the real issue. The error light trigger may have just been a result of the second brake attempt when you slammed them.

Good luck and stay safe.
Thanks again for the detailed explanation. I wish I had the Techstream thingy to confirm what they saw or missed.

I get you.. the real issue is that the brakes didn't work at least one time, getting me on full-on panic mode. If there had been another car ahead of me at the light, I would have definitely rammed into its back. Will go to the Service in person tomorrow and request another computer check on the brake system, if they won't do it, have to look for another Service center. Is there a limit on how many times you can take your car under warranty for the same issue to different Service?
 

·
2013 LE
2013 Camry LE
Joined
·
244 Posts
In addition to sethr's suggestion, you should write an email to your regional Toyota office and register a complaint about your dealership's handling of this serious problem. What if you had slammed the brakes for a pedestrian and they failed? An error code won't bring back a life. Here's the website and use the Contact Us with email explaining your experience in great detail:
https://www.toyota.com/support/contact-us
Once you are on-file as having registered your problem with the brakes, should something happen to you in the future using them and they fail, you have legal recourse.


Also, if you have a laptop (Windows) and are savvy with software, there are members here who can help you get a fairly current safe version of Techstream. You would need to purchase a mini-VCI cable which is designed to fit into your OBDII diagnostic port under the dash and then the USB side into your laptop. Don't get a cheap one but invest in one that will not give inaccurate readings. $60 is about right, and if I can find the seller on eBay, I will repost it here. Techstream is not all that difficult to operate - some tests are done with the engine running, and some with just the ignition in the ON position. The advantage of having your own setup is if you were to experience a problem, you can drive home and connect it immediately to see if a code is present. Techstream does not erase codes if you don't tell it to, but if a code does not appear again after 10 starts, it could self-erase. Best of luck.
 

·
Photojournalist
2012 Camry LE
Joined
·
1,798 Posts
If you have lost brake fluid , it could be a leak in one of the brake lines or hoses or calipers.Check the brake fluid levels and look for leaks on the ground when you park the car. With no fluid lose , it could be the master cylinder selas leaking internally. I would get a second opinion. To keep brakes good, I flush to exchange all the brake fluid every 2 years.Brake fluid should be clear or light amber, If it is dark like coffee, you are due for a flush/ exchange of all the fluid in the system. If a pedal goes down really low, you need to release the pedal and see if you can pump it to get some pressure and to get the brakes to work.
EVERYTHING a dealership should have checked!!
It was negligence.

Sent from my STH100-1 using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
68 Posts
Thanks again for the detailed explanation. I wish I had the Techstream thingy to confirm what they saw or missed.

I get you.. the real issue is that the brakes didn't work at least one time, getting me on full-on panic mode. If there had been another car ahead of me at the light, I would have definitely rammed into its back. Will go to the Service in person tomorrow and request another computer check on the brake system, if they won't do it, have to look for another Service center. Is there a limit on how many times you can take your car under warranty for the same issue to different Service?
You're welcome. The other folks have posted good advice as well, particularly escalating the issue with corporate so that it gets a thorough check and goes on record.

Since I have the '17 XLE as well, I haven't run into anything like this while under power. I did note that you said the brakes were not wet. The one thing I have noted with this car is that when I get in after work on a rainy day, the brakes definitely don't grip well on the first try because they are wet. Additionally, I leave the car on the driveway some nights and roll in later without starting and the few times I have triggered the error code were also when it was raining out or if there was a lot of dew. Brakes don't catch at all and before I drive through the garage wall, I hit them harder. There is a thud sound as they grip hard and the error light comes on.

I highly doubt there are any limits, particularly on anything safety related and it will take them all of 3 minutes to run the techstream diagnostic check. Your car is new and you are well within your rights to get a thorough software check as well as physical inspection of fluids, lines, booster, caliper, pads, rotors, etc.

I ran my last car, a 90s Nissan from when Japan built cars to last an eternity, for almost 24 years from new and that car always started and always stopped. I learned to diagnose it better than the Nissan techs and independents in many cases using internet forums and the primitive diagnostic led lights under the dash which flashed one of 12 codes telling you which system was malfunctioning and then you had to test a bunch of stuff in that system. Now that was a pain. This car, with Techstream, gives you incredibly specific diagnostic information. The $15 mini vci from ebay, along with an updated techstream downloaded online works fine once you get it to work on the 64 bit laptop you probably have instead of the 32 bit for which it was designed.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
35 Posts
Discussion Starter #12
In addition to sethr's suggestion, you should write an email to your regional Toyota office and register a complaint about your dealership's handling of this serious problem. What if you had slammed the brakes for a pedestrian and they failed? An error code won't bring back a life. Here's the website and use the Contact Us with email explaining your experience in great detail:
https://www.toyota.com/support/contact-us
Once you are on-file as having registered your problem with the brakes, should something happen to you in the future using them and they fail, you have legal recourse.
-------
Techstream does not erase codes if you don't tell it to, but if a code does not appear again after 10 starts, it could self-erase. Best of luck.
You are right, the risk is it could have been fatal. I also can't imagine driving with kids in this car, until I'm sure everything is evaluated 100% correctly.
Thanks for the suggestions. Will definitely email them via the 'Contact Us' link you had posted. Should I email the Toyota Regional Office separately besides this? How can I find the email for the Regional Toyota Office? I also plan to call the Toyota Customer Service Center if I'm not happy with how it turns out at the dealership.

From what you have mentioned I'm getting an idea about how to connect the software and want it. I have a Windows laptop and would like to get the software and the mini-VCI cable you and Khakuda are referring to, if it's not expensive, so long as it won't disrupt the car's technology (i.e. don't want software that has malware or virus). Also need to learn how to read diagnostic codes and what they mean. Like I need a full tutorial as I have no idea : )
Can you or someone provide some guidance in getting the software and steps to use it for troubleshooting etc?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
35 Posts
Discussion Starter #13
Since I have the '17 XLE as well, I haven't run into anything like this while under power. I did note that you said the brakes were not wet. The one thing I have noted with this car is that when I get in after work on a rainy day, the brakes definitely don't grip well on the first try because they are wet. Additionally, I leave the car on the driveway some nights and roll in later without starting and the few times I have triggered the error code were also when it was raining out or if there was a lot of dew. Brakes don't catch at all and before I drive through the garage wall, I hit them harder. There is a thud sound as they grip hard and the error light comes on.
----
This car, with Techstream, gives you incredibly specific diagnostic information. The $15 mini vci from ebay, along with an updated techstream downloaded online works fine once you get it to work on the 64 bit laptop you probably have instead of the 32 bit for which it was designed.
This is very helpful how you explained the wet brakes and what happened in your car's case. That night my car was parked in the lot of the shopping complex for maybe an hour - weather probably low 60's, definitely not a wet day. I drove it for probably 2 - 2.5 miles on 30-35 speed and then the brake issue happened. I mean does driving on a steady speed at around 35 can cause this to happen? Not sure what caused this at all. The more I read about the software on this thread, the more I would like to learn how to use it, of course after getting it. Any links on where to buy a good software is appreciated.

I will make a note of everything you said - "physical inspection of fluids, lines, booster, caliper, pads, rotors, etc." and ask the Manager or the Service technician who worked on my car about these, if I can get a hold of him at all. I've been driving for a while but have no knowledge about car mechanics or engineering, and I appreciate everyone's comments here as I'm learning something from it.

My last car Honda Accord EXL-V6 which I drove for 12 years did not have any brake failures, until a few months ago it skid on a wet road, hit the side rails driving down a bridge @30-35 speed and got totaled. That is still a very scary memory as I remember sitting in a spinning car that hit the side rails hard. Never again want to experience the effect of poor brakes and want to be on top of any diagnosis that the service people claim to have done.

All, when I go to Service mid-day I plan to get a copy of the Repair order. What other paperwork should I ask them to provide me, for proof of testing/diagnosis?
 

·
2013 LE
2013 Camry LE
Joined
·
244 Posts
You are right, the risk is it could have been fatal. I also can't imagine driving with kids in this car, until I'm sure everything is evaluated 100% correctly.
Thanks for the suggestions. Will definitely email them via the 'Contact Us' link you had posted. Should I email the Toyota Regional Office separately besides this? How can I find the email for the Regional Toyota Office? I also plan to call the Toyota Customer Service Center if I'm not happy with how it turns out at the dealership.

From what you have mentioned I'm getting an idea about how to connect the software and want it. I have a Windows laptop and would like to get the software and the mini-VCI cable you and Khakuda are referring to, if it's not expensive, so long as it won't disrupt the car's technology (i.e. don't want software that has malware or virus). Also need to learn how to read diagnostic codes and what they mean. Like I need a full tutorial as I have no idea : )
Can you or someone provide some guidance in getting the software and steps to use it for troubleshooting etc?

I'm not sure how to reach your Toyota regional office, but the link I sent you was the result of a search for Toyota regional offices. Again once you have registered your complaint/issue, it will be on-file just in case this illusive problem happens again and something worse happens. Put as much detail into the description as possible. I don't often defend dealers, but it is possible that by the time you got your Camry to them, there were more than 10 starts which may have "bumped" any stored code into the bit-bucket. Once you get the Mini-VCI cable and Techstream, there is a feature that lets you "save" the log file on your laptop. So if you find something yourself, you can preserve it. Also, you can do an Alt+PrtScn with your laptop and create a jpeg image of the Techstream screen that showed an error code. Once you have a code, you can either Google it or post it here and somebody will know what it is. I found an ebay link to the Mini-VCI cable:
https://www.ebay.com/p/Mini-VCI-Diagnostic-Tool-Cable-Scanner-for-TOYOTA-Lexus-TIS-Techstream-V10-30-29/689743963?iid=132152894001&_trkparms=aid=555018&algo=PL.SIM&ao=2&asc=48741&meid=a2cae9082d684e4899d733cb024d8a7e&pid=100005&rk=3&rkt=6&sd=131982316388&_trksid=p2047675.c100005.m1851
I could also reach out privately to a member here who could help you get a clean and current version of Techstream.
 

·
Premium Member
2001 Corolla
Joined
·
487 Posts
@kfly if you ever decide to get yourself a tecstream software i suggest you to get a 64bit compatible cable it way easier to deal with it compared to 32bit, plus i am more than happy to help you out on how to install the drivers check your pm

(dont quote me on this) but i believe any USB-MiniVCI cable out there like the GXG-1987 can do the job as long as you have the software
 
1 - 16 of 16 Posts
Top