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Old 07-16-2019, 10:50 PM   #29
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Back to the question of "oil starvation," I lost an engine in my 2014 at 65K miles as a result of oil starvation. When the dealer tore down the engine, the oil pump gear had shattered. No oil pump gear, no oil flowing. No oil flowing, bearings spin. Mine went from accelerating away from an intersection to dead in a matter of seconds. The main difference between your story and mine is that I didn't get any warning at all, no ticking or other sound.

I'm at least the second person on the forum this happened to, and I suspect some of the other failures blamed on oil starvation were caused by the same part. I know there were some people whose dealers said the engine was lost to a spun bearing. A spun bearing is a symptom, not a cause. Something else caused that bearing not to be oiled properly, and unless they can prove it was something you did, the warranty should cover it if the warranty is still in effect.

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Old 07-16-2019, 11:25 PM   #30
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Originally Posted by Ohh_Ouch View Post
I have a '15 FRS with 42,000 miles. Bought it used at 28,000 oil change at 34,500. I heard a slight ticking sound on my way to work, a coworker who is more knowledgeable looked at it with me, oil level was good, no gunk, a little dark as expected but I was wanting to get it in for an oil change anyway. He said it sounded like a timing issue and to take it slow. Drove home the next morning after work and called the dealership for service. On my way to the dealership the knocking grew louder and about 3 blocks away a horrible grinding noise started and immediately the oil light came on followed by the engine light, then the entire hud lit up like a Christmas tree and the car died. From the time the metal grinding sound started to the time the lights went crazy to the car dying was about 3-5 seconds. Now the dealership is saying the main bearing is destroyed and it was oil starvation, the head mechanic looked me in the face and said that, then proceeded to tell me that the oil levels were fine. "It suffered oil starvation at some point." Was the answer I got. "Metal shavings in the oil." Really? I could have told you that from the sound it made 3 blocks ago.

I talked with a service rep who told me to wait it out and someone from Toyota would be in to look at it. Got the news today that they looked at, said there was metal in the oil and it was due to oil starvation. You dont say.

I feel like I'm talking to a brick wall and have no idea what to do. And right now I'm looking at over $8,000 for a used engine swap with 47,000 miles if I want to get my car on the road again. Any advice would be appreciated.

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If you do end of having to pay out of pocket. Used low mileage engine are all over for under 3k$ a shop should do the swap for 2k$ at most. Or do swap yourself over a long weekend with a buddy.
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Old 07-17-2019, 07:39 AM   #31
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out of curiosity, did you have any work done that couldve resulted in a dealer tech applying sealant in the motor? theyre notorious for using too much, and causing excess sealant to get into oil passages.
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Old 07-17-2019, 05:55 PM   #32
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Call Toyota Corporate for assistance. Ask if they can good will a repair or help with repair costs. It sounds like the dealership is pointing to your car being out of warranty. Hopefully the last oil change was serviced at the dealership and at the dealership you bought it from so it would show some sort of "dealership loyalty" which could make them more lenient.

I needed new cams on my FR-S and I asked Toyota Corporate for assistance and they agreed to front the part cost and also from my dealership I got a discount on the labor for being a loyal customer.
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Old 07-19-2019, 02:14 PM   #33
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That's true. It could be passed the 5 years. I assumed it is in warranty time period still.
The first thing the dealership checked was to make sure it was still under warranty. It still fell withing the 5 year 60,000 mile powertrain.

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Old 07-19-2019, 02:16 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by extrashaky View Post
Back to the question of "oil starvation," I lost an engine in my 2014 at 65K miles as a result of oil starvation. When the dealer tore down the engine, the oil pump gear had shattered. No oil pump gear, no oil flowing. No oil flowing, bearings spin. Mine went from accelerating away from an intersection to dead in a matter of seconds. The main difference between your story and mine is that I didn't get any warning at all, no ticking or other sound.



I'm at least the second person on the forum this happened to, and I suspect some of the other failures blamed on oil starvation were caused by the same part. I know there were some people whose dealers said the engine was lost to a spun bearing. A spun bearing is a symptom, not a cause. Something else caused that bearing not to be oiled properly, and unless they can prove it was something you did, the warranty should cover it if the warranty is still in effect.



Did you call Toyota Customer Care and make a report? I just got off the phone with them and they said the only way anything will change is if more owners report this problem.

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Old 07-19-2019, 02:21 PM   #35
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Just got off the phone with Toyota Customer Care, it's like talking to a brick wall. I was told that once a claim is denied by the warranty department there is no further action that can be taken. I asked about speaking to anyone higher or getting a number to call the warranty department and was told there was no way to contact them.

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Old 07-19-2019, 02:45 PM   #36
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Did you call Toyota Customer Care and make a report? I just got off the phone with them and they said the only way anything will change is if more owners report this problem.
Mine is a Subaru. It was covered under warranty with no questions asked, so there was no reason for me to involve anyone at a higher level.

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Just got off the phone with Toyota Customer Care, it's like talking to a brick wall. I was told that once a claim is denied by the warranty department there is no further action that can be taken. I asked about speaking to anyone higher or getting a number to call the warranty department and was told there was no way to contact them.
You'll end up having to sue them for it. I'd go talk to a lawyer about the best way to proceed. Maybe an attorney can convince them it's not worth their while to fight you.
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Old 07-19-2019, 02:57 PM   #37
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The first thing the dealership checked was to make sure it was still under warranty. It still fell withing the 5 year 60,000 mile powertrain.

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That is important to know.

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Mine is a Subaru. It was covered under warranty with no questions asked, so there was no reason for me to involve anyone at a higher level.



You'll end up having to sue them for it. I'd go talk to a lawyer about the best way to proceed. Maybe an attorney can convince them it's not worth their while to fight you.

Not sure about OP's state but in many places a consultation is free so there is zero risk in speaking to a lawyer.
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Old 07-19-2019, 04:53 PM   #38
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Originally Posted by Ohh_Ouch View Post
I have a '15 FRS with 42,000 miles. Bought it used at 28,000 oil change at 34,500. I heard a slight ticking sound on my way to work, a coworker who is more knowledgeable looked at it with me, oil level was good, no gunk, a little dark as expected but I was wanting to get it in for an oil change anyway. He said it sounded like a timing issue and to take it slow. Drove home the next morning after work and called the dealership for service. On my way to the dealership the knocking grew louder and about 3 blocks away a horrible grinding noise started and immediately the oil light came on followed by the engine light, then the entire hud lit up like a Christmas tree and the car died. From the time the metal grinding sound started to the time the lights went crazy to the car dying was about 3-5 seconds. Now the dealership is saying the main bearing is destroyed and it was oil starvation, the head mechanic looked me in the face and said that, then proceeded to tell me that the oil levels were fine. "It suffered oil starvation at some point." Was the answer I got. "Metal shavings in the oil." Really? I could have told you that from the sound it made 3 blocks ago.

I talked with a service rep who told me to wait it out and someone from Toyota would be in to look at it. Got the news today that they looked at, said there was metal in the oil and it was due to oil starvation. You dont say.

I feel like I'm talking to a brick wall and have no idea what to do. And right now I'm looking at over $8,000 for a used engine swap with 47,000 miles if I want to get my car on the road again. Any advice would be appreciated.

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Do you know yet what part failed that dumped metal shavings into the engine? That is the first order of business. Everything else is irrelevant until you figure out the cause. Depending on what failed, you, the mechanic, service writer, Toyota, and your lawyer can start fighting about what caused the unknown part to fail (e.g. low oil, faulty part, improper repair such as over-doing sealant on a timing cover job).
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Old 07-19-2019, 08:00 PM   #39
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Do you know yet what part failed that dumped metal shavings into the engine? That is the first order of business. Everything else is irrelevant until you figure out the cause. Depending on what failed, you, the mechanic, service writer, Toyota, and your lawyer can start fighting about what caused the unknown part to fail (e.g. low oil, faulty part, improper repair such as over-doing sealant on a timing cover job).
What part failed really doesn't matter if it's under warranty and he didn't do anything to cause the failure. When mine went in, they didn't say, "We'll tear it down to see what caused it, THEN decide whether to honor the warranty." They said, "It's under warranty, you're covered, here's your loaner car."

Furthermore, it sounds like the dealership has decided not to honor the warranty before actually finding the cause. How do they know it was something he did if they haven't done any work on it? They don't. Some shavings in the oil are not a substitute for disassembly and inspection.

Magnuson-Moss says they can't do that. If they're going to deny the warranty, they have to be able to show that he caused the problem, which is very unlikely if they haven't taken anything apart to find out what happened.
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Old 07-20-2019, 02:50 AM   #40
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What part failed really doesn't matter if it's under warranty and he didn't do anything to cause the failure. When mine went in, they didn't say, "We'll tear it down to see what caused it, THEN decide whether to honor the warranty." They said, "It's under warranty, you're covered, here's your loaner car."

Furthermore, it sounds like the dealership has decided not to honor the warranty before actually finding the cause. How do they know it was something he did if they haven't done any work on it? They don't. Some shavings in the oil are not a substitute for disassembly and inspection.

Magnuson-Moss says they can't do that. If they're going to deny the warranty, they have to be able to show that he caused the problem, which is very unlikely if they haven't taken anything apart to find out what happened.
You said it yourself: they have to tear it down to determine the cause. The dealer wants a signature on an estimate that says the teardown will be covered by the responsible party. If the results of the inspection show an issue that will be covered under warranty, Toyota will honor the cost of the inspection and subsequent repair. However, if the cause is determined to be negligence on the part of the current or previous owner, or secondary to a failed aftermarket parts, the dealer doesn't want to be on the hook for several hundred dollars in labor.

The issue is that the current owner (OP) likely doesn't want to sign their name to an estimate like this because of some unfounded belief that having a warranty suddenly means that all of the labor associated with diagnosis of any failure, ultimately covered or not, is the responsibility of the manufacturer and its dealer network. Or OP knows there are gaps in the history of the car that might be revealed to be causative and thus result in denial of warranty coverage for this failure.

You make a very big assumption that "OP didn't do anything to cause the failure." The dealer cannot afford to eat huge labor costs simply because the "think" that nothing nefarious has happened. That's why the diagnosis is required before making a final judgment. Toyota will honor the warranty if they find something that provides incontrovertible evidence that a manufacturing defect or authorized repair failure occurred.
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Old 07-20-2019, 01:21 PM   #41
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The dealer wants a signature on an estimate that says the teardown will be covered by the responsible party. If the results of the inspection show an issue that will be covered under warranty, Toyota will honor the cost of the inspection and subsequent repair.
That's not what OP said happened. He said they told him the work wasn't covered because there was metal in the oil. Unless he's misleading us, metal in the oil isn't sufficient evidence to conclude that he caused the problem and deny the warranty claim.

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... the dealer doesn't want to be on the hook for several hundred dollars in labor.
The dealer is not on the hook for the labor costs. In a warranty claim, the manufacturer pays the dealer for the work.

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You make a very big assumption that "OP didn't do anything to cause the failure."
No, I don't make that assumption. The Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act of 1975 does. It puts the burden of proof on the manufacturer to show that the user caused the issue, similar to a presumption of innocence. The assumption is that the failure was caused by a defect in materials or workmanship until the manufacturer can show otherwise.

What he needs to do is get a lawyer who has a little experience with warranty claims to advise him and tell him the best course of action to get the repair done. My guess is that a letter from an attorney expressing an intent to resolve the matter in court would suddenly make them more amenable to doing the work under warranty to "preserve customer goodwill" or something like that.
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Old 07-20-2019, 03:04 PM   #42
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That's not what OP said happened. He said they told him the work wasn't covered because there was metal in the oil. Unless he's misleading us, metal in the oil isn't sufficient evidence to conclude that he caused the problem and deny the warranty claim.



The dealer is not on the hook for the labor costs. In a warranty claim, the manufacturer pays the dealer for the work.



No, I don't make that assumption. The Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act of 1975 does. It puts the burden of proof on the manufacturer to show that the user caused the issue, similar to a presumption of innocence. The assumption is that the failure was caused by a defect in materials or workmanship until the manufacturer can show otherwise.

What he needs to do is get a lawyer who has a little experience with warranty claims to advise him and tell him the best course of action to get the repair done. My guess is that a letter from an attorney expressing an intent to resolve the matter in court would suddenly make them more amenable to doing the work under warranty to "preserve customer goodwill" or something like that.
I'm not a lawyer; I agree, OP would likely benefit from professional counsel.

That said, Toyota offers a "limited" warranty on all of their products. One of the limitations is that failures due to neglect or mistreatment or normal wear and tear among other conditions are expressly not covered. Based on my own two personal experiences with warranty claims, one of which was with Toyota and the other with Honda, for both I was asked to sign an estimate indicating my agreement to pay for diagnostic services if indeed the problem was not found to be covered by the limited warranty. In both instances, in-depth diagnostic services were required as the problems were hidden from plain sight. In both of my cases, the issue was ultimately deemed covered under limited warranty and I owed no money to the dealership or to the manufacturer.

And yes, I know that the guarantor of the warranty is Toyota; but Toyota isn't going to eat the cost of a dealer's diagnostic efforts if the diagnosis leads to a conclusion that the limited warranty does not apply. That doesn't make sense. I did a quick search for case law on this particular issue but I came up empty. It has always seemed reasonable to me, though, that I be held responsible for problems that arise because of my own negligence, whether known or unknown. If the OP is confident this is a failure due to parts or workmanship, signing the estimate should be a no-brainer.

If the case law standard is indeed to have the manufacturer eat all diagnostic costs associated with all repairs, under warranty or not, then that's not a good policy IMO. The costs of new vehicles is already insanely high; forcing companies to cover diagnostic fees for every problem within the first 3-5 years of ownership seems like costs they'll pass on to the buyers. I, for one, don't want to pay for other people's negligence.
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