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Discussion Starter #1
Hi all. I was looking for first gen 4 cylinders until I learned about the whole stripped headbolt deal. I have no need for the v6 but that is what I am looking at now. But my question is- did toyota have head bolt problems with this first generation as well? Are there any particular first gen years I should avoid with the V6?

thanks!
 

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2003 Highlander
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2003 V6 AWD 346k miles, original owner.
eltorogrande: There have been reports of the V6 having an oil sludge problem but it appears Toyota resolved this from the 2003 and later. I have not experienced any sludge issues. Other than that it is a bulletproof engine in my opinion. Very smooth. Haya....
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Yes I have heard some issues on sludge. Some are saying if you oil change at 3k there is no build up. I thought it was resolved after 2005 though?
 

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You can double check with the Toyota parts online catalog, but I believe the change to the V6 valve cover baffles came in 2005.
If it were me, I would only buy a 2005 to 2007, and try to hold out for the 2007 if it is going to be my primary vehicle. But you do need to put up with the throttle delay of the first generation throttle by wire. That is the main downside I see in the 2005-2007.
 

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2004 highlander v6
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739 Posts
wonder what the valve cover baffle change did, and why do some models need it and others dont
 

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The old baffles tend to accumulate sludge if the oil gets dirty, which allows more oil to be pulled into the intake manifold through the PCV. My mechanic had a 1MZ on the floor that did not have regular oil changes. Very bad sludge and carbon in the cylinders killed it. Moral of story: don’t believe the hype. Change oil at 3000 miles with the correct weight and grade synthetic.
 
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