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The rear drive actually engages every time you start off. One diagnostic that's easy to run is disconnecting the connector from the 4WD ECU behind the glove box. Then driving down the road everything in the rear will still be turning but not under power. With the car on jack stands only the front wheels will turn. You may be able to make a judgement based on the changes in sound.
I just purchased my 2009 V6 4WD with 92k miles. I am in the same situation. Am in South Florida running from Hurricane Dorian and driving back to Phoenix. (Missed us thankfully.)
The local dealer said that my rear diff was gone and at $3800+ could be fixed.
I had them change the transfer belt $275+.
My question:
I would like to attempt to disconnect my 4WD ECU. If it stops the sound, is it safe to leave it disconnected for the 2000 miles I need to get home and get it properly diagnosed? Will it hurt anything? I will be doing highway. Please help as I will be moving on North soon.
Thank you in advance,
 

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Since the 4WD ECU stops sending a signal to the rear coupler at low speeds (20-30 mph) anyway disconnecting it couldn't hurt IMO.
Never heard of a transfer belt. What does the invoice list?
 

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Since the 4WD ECU stops sending a signal to the rear coupler at low speeds (20-30 mph) anyway disconnecting it couldn't hurt IMO.
Never heard of a transfer belt. What does the invoice list?
Sorry, it was the drive belt that they replaced. Part 99367-K1550.
Then stated completed fan belt replacement = $219.95
My suspicion is this. I took the vehicle to 2 Toyota mechanics before taking it to the dealer.
They both cleared me for travel with the exception of the previous owner removing the run flats and replacing with standard tires...I have no spare, jack, etc...I do have AAA
The sound is identical to what all are saying however, I am a blonde woman....many mechanics think that equates to dumb...
I went to the tools I have on hand. No metrics and I believe the removal of the 4WD ECU coupler requires a 10 mm to get to it? Is that correct? I travel in 2 days and don’t want to be stranded.
Thank you
 

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Sorry, it was the drive belt that they replaced. Part 99367-K1550.
Then stated completed fan belt replacement = $219.95
My suspicion is this. I took the vehicle to 2 Toyota mechanics before taking it to the dealer.
They both cleared me for travel with the exception of the previous owner removing the run flats and replacing with standard tires...I have no spare, jack, etc...I do have AAA
The sound is identical to what all are saying however, I am a blonde woman....many mechanics think that equates to dumb...
I went to the tools I have on hand. No metrics and I believe the removal of the 4WD ECU coupler requires a 10 mm to get to it? Is that correct? I travel in 2 days and don’t want to be stranded.
Thank you
Checked the car fax...drive belt replace at 51k... rear strut insert cartridge and Tranny fluid replaced at 90k.
 

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The serpentine belt likely didn't need replacement. They can last 200K.
No tools needed for the disconnect. Just drop the glove box for access. Explained somewhere on the forum but I don't have time to find it now.
 

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Well, I ordered a Febest ST215 kit and dropped what I thought was the apparatus that i thought needs work. It doesn't appear to be electromagnetic at all, though. Is this, right here, what you all are repairing with the ST215 kit for coupler bearing noise?

145199


I notice that this deal has a wide flange on It (seen on the left end above) that I'm afraid to try and remove, to press the guts out. Now - given that this same noise problem was addressed once before under warranty some 60-80k miles ago before, might what I have be a replacement that has something on it not seen on the original? Or, is my repair actually the mechanism behind this one that's actually inside the differential housing with a wire connector leading to it?

Thanks,
Ted
 
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