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Discussion Starter #1
My 2005 CE has 259,000 miles and it's getting time to find another. That's a few months away but I'm looking for input or forums that have info on Corolla-specific things to look for/avoid when shopping used - model years, features, whatever. Thanks!
 

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I don't know what your budget is, but assuming it's somewhat modest, I'd go for a 2006 - 2008 Corolla. Very few problems and probably the best Corolla ever made (depending on what is important). One thing I look for when inspecting used cars is to see if there's oil in the tailpipe. Obviously make sure the pipe is cold before swiping your finger in there. If it comes out with Jet Black wet oil, then RUN away. Looked at a Gen 4 Camry a while back, and the tailpipe was like that. Checked the oil and it was VERY low. I didn't even bother test driving the car.

Points to look for on the Gen 9 are catalytic converter P0420, intake manifold gasket P0171, and common issues with evap P0446/P0442, dash clock display not working, leaking timing chain tensioner o-ring, odometer stops working at 299,999, noisy serpentine belt tensioner, and all 4 engine mounts, none of which are a deal breaker.
 

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I don't know what your budget is, but assuming it's somewhat modest, I'd go for a 2006 - 2008 Corolla. Very few problems and probably the best Corolla ever made (depending on what is important). One thing I look for when inspecting used cars is to see if there's oil in the tailpipe. Obviously make sure the pipe is cold before swiping your finger in there. If it comes out with Jet Black wet oil, then RUN away. Looked at a Gen 4 Camry a while back, and the tailpipe was like that. Checked the oil and it was VERY low. I didn't even bother test driving the car.

Points to look for on the Gen 9 are catalytic converter P0420, intake manifold gasket P0171, and common issues with evap P0446/P0442, dash clock display not working, leaking timing chain tensioner o-ring, odometer stops working at 299,999, noisy serpentine belt tensioner, and all 4 engine mounts, none of which are a deal breaker.
Thank you. Excellent advice and I'd been thinking the Gen 9 ranks up there. Was torn about getting another, having been through a lot of the codes you mention. There are still a few with relatively low miles so that may be an option. Budget is uncertain but am shooting for a 10K floor. Could be more than that. Used prices are way up these days but something will turn up. Just getting a head start on prep!
 

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What's wrong with your 05 ce? Is it eating oil? You must take good care of it to get that model year up so high in miles!
 

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I have an 08 and its been pretty easy maintenance. Low miles don't necessarily mean it's a good vehicle. I checked out a few low miles but with almost no maintenance done (leaky valve cover, dirty ATF, etc) and ended up buying one with a solid history and 106k. Just make sure any low mile corollas arent on their second odometer...
 

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What's wrong with your 05 ce? Is it eating oil? You must take good care of it to get that model year up so high in miles!
My 2005 is still going strong but it's been everywhere and it's that classic toss-up between replacing just about everything or moving on. If this were a southern car without all the road salt, I'd keep it.
 

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What's your view of the post Gen 9's? A model year from '12-'14 (or later if lucky) might be within reach.

Thanks!
 

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Gen 10s would be a good option too for you. They are slightly safer (standard side airbags, traction control and abs are more common if not standard I believe). Just steer clear of the early 2.4L vehicles. Stay with the 1.8s and you’ll be good.
Personally, I would say keep your ‘05 till it gets unreliable and then get a well taken care of Gen10 Corolla. Used car prices seem to be really high currently
 
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Discussion Starter #10
Gen 10s would be a good option too for you. They are slightly safer (standard side airbags, traction control and abs are more common if not standard I believe). Just steer clear of the early 2.4L vehicles. Stay with the 1.8s and you’ll be good.
Personally, I would say keep your ‘05 till it gets unreliable and then get a well taken care of Gen10 Corolla. Used car prices seem to be really high currently
Thank you for the input! If I do go Gen 10, will stay away from the S models and the 2.4L. I'm very fond of my '05 but it's age is apparent and I don't want to wait until it literally croaks. The plan is to give it to someone who won't mind fixing it for the final 60-80K miles. Prices are high but there are always finds...I hope.
 

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Used car prices seem to be really high currently
Because people are getting their tax refunds and/or stimulus checks. This causes used car prices to go up. A good time to buy (normally) is at the very end of the summer through the fall.
 
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2000 Corolla CE, 186k miles, AT
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My 2005 CE has 259,000 miles and it's getting time to find another. That's a few months away but I'm looking for input or forums that have info on Corolla-specific things to look for/avoid when shopping used - model years, features, whatever. Thanks!
You probably know this, but I've been telling others to take an OBD reader these days. Maybe you'll luck out and get full disclosure, but I've seen a few used cars where I could tell something was hidden. I wouldn't necessarily seek codes, but simply if it was 'not ready yet' - possibly being reset just prior to remove CEL. I saw one with 62k miles and was 'honestly' told of possible need for timing belt...then when I questioned if it was a chain, was told, 'no one knows,' then I questioned the quarts of oil in the trunk (which was thicker weight than spec anyway)...'oh just in case'...right, okay, buh bye.
 

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You probably know this, but I've been telling others to take an OBD reader these days. Maybe you'll luck out and get full disclosure, but I've seen a few used cars where I could tell something was hidden. I wouldn't necessarily seek codes, but simply if it was 'not ready yet' - possibly being reset just prior to remove CEL. I saw one with 62k miles and was 'honestly' told of possible need for timing belt...then when I questioned if it was a chain, was told, 'no one knows,' then I questioned the quarts of oil in the trunk (which was thicker weight than spec anyway)...'oh just in case'...ri
My friend's kid just bought her first car (Jeep) and the check engine light came on right when they got home. Catalytic converter failed.

I definitely don't trust small pop up dealerships like the one she bought from, but you're suggestion is wise. It's only $20 for a reader and can save a headache.
 

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What do you look for when connecting a reader if the codes were cleared?
A tell tale sign is if the emissions testing says "not ready". I personally use a 6 dollar bluetooth ebay reader and torqueapp ($5 app) and serves its purpose. It will also tell you how long/how many miles its been since last reset.
 

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Also, many codes will return soon after they are cleared, so it might be worth it to go on an extended test drive. Drive for 15 to 30 min, then have a friend also drive for a while right after.

This won't work for every code, but its worth the extra time to make sure the car is good.

Also note that 10th gen corollas are electric power steering and feel a bit different at the steering wheel.
 

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Discussion Starter #18
You probably know this, but I've been telling others to take an OBD reader these days. Maybe you'll luck out and get full disclosure, but I've seen a few used cars where I could tell something was hidden. I wouldn't necessarily seek codes, but simply if it was 'not ready yet' - possibly being reset just prior to remove CEL. I saw one with 62k miles and was 'honestly' told of possible need for timing belt...then when I questioned if it was a chain, was told, 'no one knows,' then I questioned the quarts of oil in the trunk (which was thicker weight than spec anyway)...'oh just in case'...right, okay, buh bye.
Great advice. Finally got one when it threw a code last summer. $30 and very convenient. Essential gear from here on out.
 
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