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Discussion Starter #1
I have a 2002 Avalon with a P0325 code. From reading posts on this website, it could either be the knock sensor wire harness, the knock sensor itself or the ECU. What is the best and most cost effective strategy for a non-mechanic to communicate to a technician how to solve the problem to fix the underlying problem? How much more labor intensive and parts $ is it to replace the actual sensor at the same time as the harness? Car runs perfectly except for this error code.

Do independent technicians/auto repair repair shops install factory parts purchased by customers? Would there be savings buying a genuine knock sensor or wire harness online and then have the repair shop install it since I've read that there is a big mark up by auto repair shops on parts?
 

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Since your not a DIY best to let the shop do the diagnoses/repair and hold them responsible for any comeback.
An established/competent shop will charge for labor/parts.
Maybe try a mobile mechanic if want a reduced price.
 

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I have a 2002 Avalon with a P0325 code. From reading posts on this website, it could either be the knock sensor wire harness, the knock sensor itself or the ECU. What is the best and most cost effective strategy for a non-mechanic to communicate to a technician how to solve the problem to fix the underlying problem? How much more labor intensive and parts $ is it to replace the actual sensor at the same time as the harness? Car runs perfectly except for this error code.

A non mechanic trying to tell a mechanic how to do his job based on what the non mechanic read on the internet going to go over like a turn in a punch bowl.

Since the intake manifold has to be removed to change the sub harness the extra labor to R & R the actual sensors is minimal.

Do independent technicians/auto repair repair shops install factory parts purchased by customers? Would there be savings buying a genuine knock sensor or wire harness online and then have the repair shop install it since I've read that there is a big mark up by auto repair shops on parts?
Shops make money on parts. Often, the price Joe Blow can buy something off the internet is less than what the shop pays. Most shops frown on customer parts but, some will install them and increase labor cost to make up for lost parts profits.
The correct repair is to replace both sensors and the harness after verifying there is not another issue like wiring harness damage from the sub harness to the ECM.
 

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Discussion Starter #4 (Edited)
Is this a job best left to an independent repair shop that specializes in Toyota vehicles or are most independent garages capable of accomplishing this repair? Is the best way to obtain a quote by visiting the shop in person and obtaining a written quote?
 

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"Is the best way to obtain a quote by visiting the shop in person and obtaining a written quote?"


Repairpal.com will give idea/estimate of what's involved.
Repair could run to $1000, so if engine runs ok, worth it only if needed to pass emissions.

If you clear code does it come back right away?
 

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Discussion Starter #6
"Is the best way to obtain a quote by visiting the shop in person and obtaining a written quote?"


Repairpal.com will give idea/estimate of what's involved.
Repair could run to $1000, so if engine runs ok, worth it only if needed to pass emissions.

If you clear code does it come back right away?

Yes, the code comes back right away after clearing it.
 

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Ok, if you need it fixed you'll have to "bite the bullet" on the cost, no way around that.
Let shop do the diagnoses/repair that way you have some recourse if problem isn't fixed.
 

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Somebody who knows what they are doing will get this done in 2.5-3.5 hours. The inexperienced will take most of a day to do it, as the intake has to come out. This is what most people working on the 1MZ call major repair; it's not really that bad. pretty straightforward, just a lot of steps.



Use the Denso - not Matsushita - knock sensors. The eBay "Denso" (Chenso) sensors for $25/pair are fake. Real Densos from a Toyota dealer will run you $150-$180 each, and that's if, as mentioned, your mechanic lets you bring your own parts. Harness runs about $23-30.


While it's open, the water bypass hose, fuel injector seals, and rear spark plugs should be done as they are now easily accessible. Not to mention the intake and plenum gaskets, plus coolant should be replaced.


Any way you look at it, this is going to be expensive unless you do the work yourself. There are guides around here and in the gen3/4 Camry forums that will help you out if you choose to DIY. I agree with the sentiment that you should let a shop do the diagnosis. I've never seen it be the ECU (usually sensor, sometimes harness), but make sure a competent shop follows the official troubleshooting procedure to pinpoint the problem so that you don't waste money.
 

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If you are gonna have someone do the knock sensor, I suggest you do a tuneup too while add it because that is the best time to do the rear spark plugs and if you want, rear valve cover gasket. Otherwise all you can do is shop around and get quotes then look at reviews and find out which shop is trustworthy and worth the price.
 

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I had a somewhat similar problem, and now it is resolved!

I had a P0325 on a 2001 Avalon which is Knock sensor 1 which is on Bank 1 respectively. Allot of work for someone that does it their selves like me! I believe the problem initially was when the Engine ran Hot and messed up the integrity of the Knock sensor harness connectors and or wiring to the Knock sensors. I replaced both knock sensors with OEM Denso sensors, a Genuine Toyota wiring harness, a genuine Toyota Bypass hose and some new Intake and Plenum Gaskets.
Please note I was able to get all of the Parts I used off of Amazon for $118.39 plus tax.
If you go try to buy all four parts locally, you'll spend probably close to $500, minimum if your lucky!
I have Amazon Prime membership and received these items in two days with no shipping costs.

The following parts fit a 2001 Toyota Avalon!
[ame]https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00KTHJHK8/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o05_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1[/ame]
[ame]https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B071XNX6TT/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o05_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1[/ame]
[ame]https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00KBYFD2U/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o05_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1[/ame]
[ame]https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B009NQ8JLE/ref=oh_aui_detailpage_o05_s00?ie=UTF8&psc=1[/ame]
 

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If you are unable to diagnose the issue yourself, the car needs to be taken to a competent mechanic or the dealer. The knock sensors both need to be checked for proper resistance and the harness needs to be checked for breaks or corrosion. Very rarely is there an issue with the ECU. Often times, the sensors fail or melt if the engine got too hot. Its not uncommon for rodents to chew the harness and cause a code to set.
 

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If you are unable to diagnose the issue yourself, the car needs to be taken to a competent mechanic or the dealer. The knock sensors both need to be checked for proper resistance and the harness needs to be checked for breaks or corrosion. Very rarely is there an issue with the ECU. Often times, the sensors fail or melt if the engine got too hot. Its not uncommon for rodents to chew the harness and cause a code to set.
Small correction, knock sensors have no resistance test - active component, basically a microphone tuned to a specific frequency or a few frequencies, generates a voltage.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Small correction, knock sensors have no resistance test - active component, basically a microphone tuned to a specific frequency or a few frequencies, generates a voltage.

The knock sensors can be tested when half of the engine is apart to determine if one or both have failed? I'm assuming it's not that much more labor $$ to check and replace the knock sensor(s), after the wire harness has been replaced, correct?
 

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The knock sensors can be tested when half of the engine is apart to determine if one or both have failed? I'm assuming it's not that much more labor $$ to check and replace the knock sensor(s), after the wire harness has been replaced, correct?
Whoops, scratch my last "correction." I just looked it up in the manual, while there isn't a resistance value (again, active component), you test to see if it's shorted between the terminal and the shell. There should be no continuity, if there is continuity, then you replace. Easy to check, I'm guessing a shop would charge an extra half hour labor to inspect and/or replace.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I received a quote of $1250 from a reputable auto repair shop in a major metropolitan area to replace both knock sensors and the wiring harness. Is this a worthwhile expense on a 17 year old car with 70k miles? The car needs this repair to pass the emissions test. I could not repair it and sell the car and disclose the issue to the new buyer. Is this a repair you will "get your money back on?"
 

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When dealing with a major labor cost repair, never do part of it, especially if you want the most permanent solution. In Arizona you won;t see your car dissolve into rust flakes, but you could see it disintegrate into a sun baked dust pan. if neither is the case, 70 miles is gold and your insurance is relatively cheap as well as property taxes, if applicable. Except for my Nirage my 3 Toyotas all are older than yours with significantly higher miles.

Consider it a 17 year life extension. My wife and her brother drove his Lexus 3 liter (2001 with 316,000 miles) 2500 miles last week. I offered to pay for a rental and hoped they would not be stranded. I would get everything right at the same time. Get the high reputation shop to do the work and see if you can significantly reduce the cost with you purchasing the parts, but understand, if THEY buy the parts the whole job is their warranty obligation, while if YOU buy the parts they can legitimately argue that you are the warrantor of those parts, as it should be.

I was the reputable shop 20 years ago and people understood the quality of the whole job was only as good as the cheapest part you buy. My brother had a heater core replaced in his 95 Thunderbird, by the best radiator shop in town. They supplied the part and it failed in just over a year, the warranty period. The owner, a personal friend, ex Marine and a big guy passed unexpectedly and my brother never tried to have the job done again. What you had lasted 17 years. It's reasonable to expect it will last another 17 years. Personally I think Toyota built vehicles of that era are the best ever made and that they will probably be the longest living, most reliable cars ever built. If it was mine I would consider it a 17X12 monthly payment or 204 months increment. Doesn't seem like much when you look at it that way. Keep it another 17 years and the engine will be worth something with only 140k miles and still not use a drop of oil. if you bought a new car today, I doubt it would be anywhere near the same in 17 years. Cars today with all the high tech will become more disposable and a new car MIGHT not last as long as your jewel.
 

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$1250 is in the ball park, maybe a bit high unless they are including the valve cover gaskets and spark plugs.

On our 03, we just had the valve cover gaskets, spark plugs, spark tube o-rings (tiny price), knock sensor harness and a crossover rubber cooling system hose replaced for $1300, and that was with OEM parts from our local Toyota dealer.

The knock sensors from the dealer are pricey. They are hardened and expensive microphones tuned to a specific frequency. We opted not to have the knock sensors replaced because our shop told us that they have never seen one go bad.

The shop does a lot of Toyota work, but is a general shop. They do work like I used to do when I could, and they warranty it completely if they buy the parts.

I figure I paid around $500 for "insurance" -- meaning that I deliberately paid extra to cover the price differential for genuine dealer parts versus aftermarket parts + the shop markup; and for the warranty coverage.

They follow book hours and their rate is $125/hr.
 
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