Front Electromagnetic Coupling Failure Question - Toyota RAV4 Forums
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#1 (permalink) Old 12-06-2012, 03:08 PM
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Front Electromagnetic Coupling Failure Question

Hello All,

Tuesday morning I came out and noticed a small oil'ish looking mark on my driveway under where the engine sits a bit off to the passenger side front tire. I checked the oil and coolant levels and both checked out fine. I figured perhaps my wife's car had leaked something there the day before but decided I would put down a plastic sheet when I got home at the end of the day to see if it was in fact coming from my 2010 Rav4 V6. Both Wed morning and again this morning I checked and the sheet was bone dry. Good I thought....

Today I took my Rav4 to the dealership for an oil change and tire rotation. I mentioned the possible leak to them and asked to have the tech poke around while it was up on the lift to put my mind at ease. About an hour later the rep comes out and tells me the leak was in fact from my Rav4 and that the in his words "Front Axle Coupling Assembly" needed to be replaced. That cost for the part is $1,250 plus labor. Luckily it's still under warranty and the issue will be covered. What I expect he is actually referring to is the front differentials electromagnetic coupling assembly.

Here's the part: Toyota COUPLING SUB-ASSY, E Part Number 41303-42021

I've looked all around the forum and found a few repair manual items that relate to the issue but both are specifically for the rear diff and coupling:

Rear Diff Carrier Assembly Disassembling: http://share.qclt.com/%E4%B8%B0%E7%9...bly/033001.pdf

Diff Oil Seal Components: http://share.qclt.com/%E4%B8%B0%E7%9...l/03300410.pdf


Between the time I saw the oil mark on the driveway I drove the Rav4 about 200 miles, mostly highway. So here's the question I would love to get timely feedback on (I'll be picking it back up later today):

What potential damage may this have done? Damaged Diff? Transfer Case? Tranny?

Other than replacing the coupling assembly, what else should I ensure the dealership did as part of the repair? Flush tranny? etc?


Any and all feedback you fellow owners can give me would be greatly appreciated!!

Mike

Last edited by Mike76; 12-06-2012 at 05:08 PM.
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#2 (permalink) Old 12-06-2012, 07:19 PM
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sucks this happened to your fairly new rav4.. i would bring these issues up with the dealer and have them thoroughly check/test these components in question.

i only recall of one other member havinga leak with i believe was the rear coupler... it too was leaking and covered by warranty. Maybe that member can chime in and address some of your concerns.
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#3 (permalink) Old 12-06-2012, 07:28 PM
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found the link to the thread..

rear differential

again, rear differential and not sure if it will apply to your case.
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#4 (permalink) Old 12-06-2012, 11:04 PM
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Wonder if it is really a $1250 part that is leaking (cracked case?) or a $2 gasket/seal leaking? That pic sure looks like the part has a flat mounting surface that is held to another flat mounting surface with 4 bolts and the $2 gasket (that holds the lube in) is in between. Dealerships really like to gouge the mother ship when it comes to cost of warranty repairs. Come to think of it, who don't the dealerships like to gouge.

'09 RAV4 V6 Ltd - Yep, it's gotta HEMI
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#5 (permalink) Old 12-07-2012, 12:45 AM
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Sorry to say that Mike, but you have your facts wrong. The coupler is located in rear diff. There is no electromagnetic coupler in front diff. Maybe you're talking about transaxle leak or perhaps transfer case leak?

Last edited by friendly_jacek; 12-07-2012 at 02:32 PM.
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#6 (permalink) Old 12-07-2012, 01:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by djb383 View Post
Wonder if it is really a $1250 part that is leaking (cracked case?) or a $2 gasket/seal leaking? That pic sure looks like the part has a flat mounting surface that is held to another flat mounting surface with 4 bolts and the $2 gasket (that holds the lube in) is in between. Dealerships really like to gouge the mother ship when it comes to cost of warranty repairs. Come to think of it, who don't the dealerships like to gouge.
They'll probably replace just the gasket and charge you for a brand new part.
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#7 (permalink) Old 12-09-2012, 05:57 PM
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Originally Posted by friendly_jacek View Post
Sorry to say that Mike, but you have your facts wrong. The coupler is located in rear diff. There is no electromagnetic coupler in front diff. Maybe you're talking about transaxle leak or perhaps transfer case leak?
Thanks to everyone that has chimed in their $0.02. I appreciate the input.

friendly_jacek, no need to be sorry for correcting my mistake! If I was working with my Pop on his Custom '55 Chevy and I was wrong I might be cross, but not when referring to my 2 year old Japanese designed Trucklet with 4WD. I know the limits of my knowledge which is exactly why this forum rocks!

So for all that have been following this string here's the update:

I picked up my 2010 Rav4 V6 from the "Stealership" on Thursday afternoon and was told that the leak was all fixed up. When I pressed as to what else my have been damaged due to driving after the leak appeared I was told "don't worry, you'll be just fine".... Yeah, right........

So after reading the replies you have all offered (Thank You!), I decided to review the invoice I got from the dealer and crawl under my Rav4 to check things out. Boy am I glad I did.

As a quick refresher, I noticed oil under the engine bay just off center and slightly behind the front passenger axle. Years of dealing with stealerships and home contractors has taught me to take pictures so here is what I found Tuesday morning. The brown marks you see are from my front tires.

Pic 1 of oil spot on driveway by front axle:

Pic 2 of oil spot on driveway by front axle:

I told the dealership exactly where I saw the oil when I dropped it off for an oil change and tire rotation. When they looked into my concern I was told by the rep that it was my Rav4 that was leaking and that it was in fact the front passenger side axle where it connected to the "electromagnetic coupling assembly". Again, thank you friendly_jacek for setting me straight on this. I was told they would replace this part under warranty and I would be good to go.

After I went back later in the day to pick up my Rav4 I compared the invoice they gave me with what I saw under my Rav4.

Here's a pic of the invoice that clearly shows that they replaced the Rear Electromagnetic Assembly with a Form In Place Gasket (F.I.P.G) and not anything in the front end related to axles or transmissions/transfer-case.:

So I start thinking, what the heck! I clearly told them the leak was in the front end and they then told me the leak was related to a front axle. Now I see this invoice showing work on the rear... Here's what I found when I crawled under my Rav4 after I got it home.

Shiny new coupling assembly bolted to the rear diff pick 1:

Here's a 2nd pic of the new coupling assembly where you can see the red F.I.P.G. leaking out between the assembly and the diff:

When I took a look at the front end I noticed that not a single bolt appeared to have been removed from any of the suspension or the plastic shroud. Here's a pic of what I found under the passenger side front end when I got it back:

So suffice it to say I immediately called the dealership back and talked to the rep that had been helping me. I explained the whole situation about how I had told them about a leak in the front end, was told they found a leak in the front end, then saw the only work done had been to the back end. The rep replied, "well, I might have been incorrect when I initially told you they found the leak in the front axle". This just goes to show that the service reps are Salesmen, not mechanics. Either way I demanded they re-book me a time asap to take a 2nd look at it.

I'm beyond annoyed that I now have to take it back a second time. I have avoided driving it because it's obvious that something spilled it's guts in the front end and I am very afraid of damaging the tranny or associated parts by driving it further. I'm going to demand that the Tech/Mechanic bring me back while its up on the lift and show me what they find/think the issue is.

So... Other then then typical dealership ineptitude, what do you guys think. Given where the oil marks are on the driveway, what do you think may have "given up the ghost"? I would love to go into the dealership on Tuesday morning as prepared and knowledgeable as possible.

Thanks again for all the help!

Mike

Last edited by Mike76; 12-10-2012 at 09:38 AM.
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#8 (permalink) Old 12-09-2012, 06:16 PM
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Dumb question: Are you sure you saw oil dripping and not water from AC?
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#9 (permalink) Old 12-09-2012, 11:20 PM
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Originally Posted by friendly_jacek View Post
Dumb question: Are you sure you saw oil dripping and not water from AC?
Yeah, that was my first thought too.

Two things make me pretty much 100% sure it wasn't from the AC. First is the fact that I noticed it Tuesday morning after it hadn't been run for over 12 hours. Typically any AC runoff evaporates by then. Second, the spot is still out there on my drive even after a few days of rain. It's got the tell-tale rainbow of something oil based.

If you take a look at the first two pics in my post above you can see how the spot sort of bloomed out like oil tends to do. I took those two pic's Tuesday morning right after I noticed it.
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#10 (permalink) Old 12-09-2012, 11:58 PM
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Man that totally sucks. But why did the change the rear coupler???? Somethin must have been wrong with it and that info was lost in the layers of people involved in the claim. Typically the dealer refuses or pushes to do these type of repairs unless there is clear evidence there is an issue. You should speak ot at least demand to speak directly with the tech for your next visit. I always ask/demand to speak with them and always enter the shop and have the tech walk me through the proposed repair. This sometimes avoids these types of issues. But either case maybe you had issue with the rear coupler. Referring to the previous thread i linked, the poster had a leak but the tech claimed it was noisy as well; the poster never even noticed. Good luck
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