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I had the same smell in my '12 Camry. I mentioned it at my last service and the dealer "Sanitized the A/C". I'm not sure exactly what they did. The smell has been gone for about 3 weeks.
 

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But here's the real issue ! Why doesn't my Honda Civic, Chevy Avalanche, Jeep Grand Cherokee and some 30 cars before them, not have this problem. Why only Toyota?
 

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But here's the real issue ! Why doesn't my Honda Civic, Chevy Avalanche, Jeep Grand Cherokee and some 30 cars before them, not have this problem. Why only Toyota?
That is the same I have been saying.

My 2007 Toyota Tundra didn't have this problem and I owned it from Sept 2007 to April 2012 with 78,000 miles not one smell came from the vents with A/C running in recycle mode all the time.

Toyota says it has a bumper to bumper warranty for 3 years or 36,000 miles and wouldn't fix it under warranty.

Brought this up with the service department when I took my 2012 Camry in for it's 5,000 mile and 10,000 mile and 15,000 mile service. They will not fix it unless I pay. What a joke. Should be covered under warranty.

Mine smells so bad I fell like up chucking out the window in the morning.
 

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But here's the real issue ! Why doesn't my Honda Civic, Chevy Avalanche, Jeep Grand Cherokee and some 30 cars before them, not have this problem. Why only Toyota?
I've wondered about that too. Mine showed up after 5 months of ownership. Took it to the dealer in Raleigh and they said I'm the first to complain about the issue, and they didn't even acknowledge there was an issue.
 

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Can anyone link some pictures of what this drain is we need to check? I plan on checking mine and also doing the foam flush.

2010 V6 with 43k miles. Stinks every in the morning and coming home from work.
 

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BeerSteakTxas
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Can anyone link some pictures of what this drain is we need to check? I plan on checking mine and also doing the foam flush.

2010 V6 with 43k miles. Stinks every in the morning and coming home from work.
stick your head under the car right behind front passenger wheel and look onto the area where fire wall turns into bottom of the cabin. on the passenger side of the center tunnel look for the 2" rubber hose sticking out of the bottom. there is only one rubber hose in that area, you can't miss it.
and get Fram fresh breeze filter.
 

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stick your head under the car right behind front passenger wheel and look onto the area where fire wall turns into bottom of the cabin. on the passenger side of the center tunnel look for the 2" rubber hose sticking out of the bottom. there is only one rubber hose in that area, you can't miss it.
and get Fram fresh breeze filter.
Thanks, I'm on it. :)
 

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This subject has been discussed over and over and over! Toyota ! When are you going to fix it. I have owned 36 cars over the past 40 years. Two have been Toyotas. This problem was not evident in all the other cars. Only in Toyotas. Why ? Yes, you can mitigate the effects by the suggestions outlined in this forum but WHY should you have to? Love my Camry but come on Toyota...Seriously?
 

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I have had my 2013 camry le for 2 months now. The stench started about a week after having it.The air coming from the vents litteraly smells like poop in the morning for about a minute and then never stinks the rest of the day. Somtimes it will do it after sitting for 2 days or over night you just never know.A musty mold smell would be better then what I get.I do live in houston so we have high humidity and i always run recirculate.im not convinced running outside air for a bit is going to help.And im not going to deal with the wear on the motors and buttons from switching from recirculate to outside air all the time.I traded a 20 year old ford ranger in for this car and it NEVER had any smells. I have a 2000 gmc truck and its a/c doesnt ever stink. The reason i bought a toyota was for their better reputation i prefer a GM vehicle. i cant believe toyota would let somthing like this make them look bad.

I started to think somthing died in their but it would stink all the time if that happened.


I've been wrestling with Toyota Corporate, as well as Claremont Toyota and Crown Toyota, for weeks now. Here's my update:

First, if you're reading this thread, maybe it's because you just discovered that your Camry stinks and you're hoping there's a solution. Well, as far as I can tell, there isn't -- not unless you're one of the lucky ones who can turn the AC on fresh rather than recycle and have the problem go away. Dealerships won't try to fix the problem, because Toyota won't reimburse them for the work. Toyota Corporate is a joke. I actually had their corporate liaison tell me that some Camry air conditioners smell like "dead animals or feces" -- her words! -- but that Toyota considers that these air conditioners are still "functioning normally". So if you've got the problem, you can make life easier on yourself by accepting right off the bat that Toyota won't fix it.

Second, I've tried reaching out to the dealership that sold me the vehicle, Crown Toyota. We'll see where that gets me. They've generally been really nice -- nicer than corporate -- so if you've got the problem, I recommend trying the dealership and not just the official Toyota folks.

Finally, Toyota Corporate told me that if I'm still dissatisfied, I have to file for arbitration. There's actually a free service for this and the paperwork is in your owners manual. I haven't done that yet but maybe I will have to. Has anyone tried this? Any luck?

- Alex
 

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I thought I would add my experience although it's remarkably consistent with most all of these posts. I got a 2013 Camry LE in January 2013 and the A/C odor started a little in June then got worse in July and August. We took it to the dealer in Sept. with about 4500 miles on the odometer.

They acknowledged the odor and said they immediately opened up a "case with Toyota" which I take to mean that they already escalated the complaint.

The dealer sprayed something called Fridgey Freeze and then gave instructions NOT TO PRESS the recirculation button or use the MAX setting (dial all the way to left). I got to thinking that it was rather strange that on a brand-new vehicle there was a function that you weren't allowed to use. :-(

Anyway, the odor was better for a week then slowly came back although the weather has been cooling. Yesterday took it back to the dealer and they said there was nothing they could do. So out of curiosity I asked what it would take to swap this for a new Camry. In other words, how much would I have to pay to get a different car? $500? $1000?

I'm glad I was sitting down when they came back with SIX THOUSAND DOLLARS! Yes, they wanted me to pay them $6000 for driving the car less than 5000 miles over 9 months.

I just now filed with Toyota through their website email. I'll update this if I hear anything.

We were planning to keep this vehicle for a long time so we even purchased the extended warranty/service contract for 6 years. Like others who have posted, I'm annoyed that obviously after several years of complaints and a 2009 TSB they still haven't tried to fix it. I'm also annoyed that I researched the Camry thoroughly before purchasing (Consumer Reports and many other magazines and car websites) and didn't see any mention of A/C problems.
 

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I thought I would add my experience although it's remarkably consistent with most all of these posts. I got a 2013 Camry LE in January 2013 and the A/C odor started a little in June then got worse in July and August. We took it to the dealer in Sept. with about 4500 miles on the odometer.

They acknowledged the odor and said they immediately opened up a "case with Toyota" which I take to mean that they already escalated the complaint.

The dealer sprayed something called Fridgey Freeze and then gave instructions NOT TO PRESS the recirculation button or use the MAX setting (dial all the way to left). I got to thinking that it was rather strange that on a brand-new vehicle there was a function that you weren't allowed to use. :-(

Anyway, the odor was better for a week then slowly came back although the weather has been cooling. Yesterday took it back to the dealer and they said there was nothing they could do. So out of curiosity I asked what it would take to swap this for a new Camry. In other words, how much would I have to pay to get a different car? $500? $1000?

I'm glad I was sitting down when they came back with SIX THOUSAND DOLLARS! Yes, they wanted me to pay them $6000 for driving the car less than 5000 miles over 9 months.


I just now filed with Toyota through their website email. I'll update this if I hear anything.

We were planning to keep this vehicle for a long time so we even purchased the extended warranty/service contract for 6 years. Like others who have posted, I'm annoyed that obviously after several years of complaints and a 2009 TSB they still haven't tried to fix it. I'm also annoyed that I researched the Camry thoroughly before purchasing (Consumer Reports and many other magazines and car websites) and didn't see any mention of A/C problems.
This your first new car? You need to understand that depreciation is highest on a new purchase. You lost at least $1k the millisecond you drove the car off the lot. Your 9 month old car is used, not even close to being new so you can't expect anywhere near new car value for it. On top of all that, what you inquired about is considered a trade in which is how the owner gets the LEAST amount of money for their car. So yeah, $6k sounds about right. Now if you sold the car yourself to another person, you could probably make the difference $5k.
 

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Um, yes, I understand the concept of depreciation. However, this was more about trying to exchange a defective product for a new one. I'm willing to pay for the use of the car. I'm not trying to trade it in because I didn't like the color or how loud the radio goes. No, it's because I'm convinced (as are others in this thread) that Toyota is willingly installing defective A/C units even though they've apparently known about the problem since '09 or earlier.

Like others, I've owned many cars, new and used, for over 30 years and this is the very first car that has had this problem. And I used to live in the Deep South where high heat and humidity were almost year-round. Now I'm in a moderately hot, humid climate but not as bad.

I plan on getting a new Fram cabin filter and Lysol or something like that to spray into the intakes. I've read about two techniques - spray from the outside with the A/C on fresh air or spray on the inside with the recirc setting on.
 

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^.
"exchange" not gonna work: your car has been titled and used for a few month-your car is used and no one would buy it for a price of the new car.
you can try to file "lemon" claim , if you would win you'll get a new car or money back.
only last to gen's having "cat pee" issues, never heard about same issue on older models.
lysol wont work as good as special foam cleaners designed for cleaning evaporators.
you also can use home AC cleaners, but they dont foam as good as automotive cleaners.
 

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Um, yes, I understand the concept of depreciation. However, this was more about trying to exchange a defective product for a new one. I'm willing to pay for the use of the car. I'm not trying to trade it in because I didn't like the color or how loud the radio goes. No, it's because I'm convinced (as are others in this thread) that Toyota is willingly installing defective A/C units even though they've apparently known about the problem since '09 or earlier.

Like others, I've owned many cars, new and used, for over 30 years and this is the very first car that has had this problem. And I used to live in the Deep South where high heat and humidity were almost year-round. Now I'm in a moderately hot, humid climate but not as bad.

I plan on getting a new Fram cabin filter and Lysol or something like that to spray into the intakes. I've read about two techniques - spray from the outside with the A/C on fresh air or spray on the inside with the recirc setting on.
Without Toyota owning up to the problem (which they obviously are not), the only exchange that's going to occur is you trading in your Camry for another one that will probably have the same problem.
 

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It isn't just the Camry, it's all Toyota vehicles. My wife and I bought a 2013 Avalon in March. It started to slowly get the mildew smell discussed here in April. We brought it in, they replaced the evaporator. By the end of May the smell was back.

Toyota does acknowledge the problem. We have contacted corporate and they say it has been an ongoing problem with some of their vehicles since 2004. They have also decided it is not worth fixing. All they offer is semiannual service while under warranty which they acknowledge won't fix the problem, but at least it won't stink for a few days. To paraphrase, their response was "so sue us."
 

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But here's the real issue ! Why doesn't my Honda Civic, Chevy Avalanche, Jeep Grand Cherokee and some 30 cars before them, not have this problem. Why only Toyota?
My Honda Civic and my girlfriend's Honda Prelude both exhibit some of this smell issue. It stinks for a few minutes after the AC is first started, when the car has been sitting/driven a long time without using the AC. It also smells after you turn the AC off and just have the vents on. The Camry kinda smells, but not nearly as bad. Just thought this was normal, who knew.
 

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A/C Musty smell

I have a 2012 Camry SE. A few months back it started smelling like a cat had sprayed underneath it. Then one day the airbag light came on and wouldn't go off. I took it to the dealership and they admitted the A/C was not draining and was full of moisture, mold and mildew which had shorted out some sensors (thus the airbag light staying on and the source of the foul smell.) When they put it on the machine, it was reading out 24 different codes. Toyota had it for a month while they tore the A/C system down and replaced the coils, condensers, compressor and duct work. They also had to have it professionally steam cleaned from front to back. I am grateful that Fletcher Toyota in Joplin was honest about the problem. They even admitted a Camry had come in a month before with the very same problem. Toyota regional guy was very involved in this and Toyota is fully aware there is a problem but I'm sure to fix this, cost them a lot of $$$. So far so good, but it continues to worry me about the drainage problem coming back at some point (after the warranty is out.)
 

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It isn't just the Camry, it's all Toyota vehicles. My wife and I bought a 2013 Avalon in March. It started to slowly get the mildew smell discussed here in April. We brought it in, they replaced the evaporator. By the end of May the smell was back.

Toyota does acknowledge the problem. We have contacted corporate and they say it has been an ongoing problem with some of their vehicles since 2004. They have also decided it is not worth fixing. All they offer is semiannual service while under warranty which they acknowledge won't fix the problem, but at least it won't stink for a few days. To paraphrase, their response was "so sue us."
Really? wow. it does seem toyota perpetually has this problem. Our 2 month old 2013 RAV has the smell for a few seconds on start up, our 2012 RAV got the smell real bad in only 3 months, and almost every other toyota we've owned going back to a 99 sienna which had it worse than all of them...it smelled like pickle juice. Weird that it seems to be a repeated problem with Toyotas. I wonder if the "cheaper" optima or sonata has a smelly AC system.
 

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I've had my Kool It for a loong time now. Just haven't got around to doing this.... :facepalm:
 
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