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Discussion Starter #1
I realize there's a similar thread but it's in a slightly different direction than this one:


Aside from normal things to check when looking at used cars, is there anything in particular to look for, for used Rav4s?


To be specific, '10+ V6 Limited Rav4's - anything I need to check out particular to these? Especially higher mileage ones?
 

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I am going to say look for a 2012. Last of the model year is typically best. I think it was the only year to have bluetooth.
As for the car itself. No vibration at highway speed. No clunk in the steering. All underside splash shields in place. No excessive rust. No side to side pull when stomping on the brakes.
 

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Take a test drive and put the RAV through the sorts of maneuvers and driving scenarios you normally use. Check maintenance records on https://ssl.toyota.com/owners/parts-service/history by registering and entering the vehicle's VIN after you have selected the most likely one you would buy. All services and recalls performed by Toyota dealers will appear as will all recall notice. Also have a trusted mechanic thoroughly check over the vehicle - any cost will be well worth the expenditure. About Bluetooth, my '11 Base has it as an option.
 

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I am going to say look for a 2012. Last of the model year is typically best.
Agreed.


I think it was the only year to have bluetooth.
Disagree. I *think* earlier years had that available too. Though it was the only year of the 3rd gen to have integrated USB from the factory. I use mine every day.

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My 2010 V-6 with the JBL audio has built-in bluetooth, however, it is only good for hands-free phone use. It will not stream audio. There is an AUX jack if you want to play audio from external devices.

To the OP's original question: By the 2009 refresh, most of the issues had been shaken down in the RAVs. Other than a common sense inspection and maybe a CarFax report, you can buy with confidence.
 

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My 2010 V-6 with the JBL audio has built-in bluetooth, however, it is only good for hands-free phone use. It will not stream audio.
Same with my 2011, BUT JuneBug mentioned some time ago that his streams music through Siri. I couldn't get it to work for me, but I'm not very sharp on this stuff. Maybe he could come back and clarify.
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My 2010 V-6 with the JBL audio has built-in bluetooth, however, it is only good for hands-free phone use. It will not stream audio. There is an AUX jack if you want to play audio from external devices.
Same with my 2011, BUT JuneBug mentioned some time ago that his streams music through Siri. I couldn't get it to work for me, but I'm not very sharp on this stuff. Maybe he could come back and clarify.
I don't have the JBL system. I have BluLogic, which lets me stream music and use the phone hands free.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Would you guys rather get a '10 with 80k miles or so or a '11 with 120k?
 

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Would you guys rather get a '10 with 80k miles or so or a '11 with 120k?
That would depend on price and condition but in general high mileage, particularly on a "newer" car doesn't bother me.

Example, I recently tried to help a family friend buy a Honda Civic. She had found an '07 with 72,000 miles at the local Honda dealer and I took her to look at a 2010 with 88,000 miles, same color, same retail price at a local Subaru dealer.
To me three years newer = done deal, but my last piece of advice to her was, "Regardless of what anyone says you have to buy the car YOU want, not the one someone else says you should get." Her husband calls me from the Honda dealer saying, "She's in love with the '07!" So it was an emotional decision, the only logical reason being, "It has lower mileage." For her that's the right decision altho I wouldn't have bought either one because I never pay anywhere near retail for a used car.
 
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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks for the input, much appreciated.


For whatever reason in my immediate area I'm finding that 2010's are a little more available than 2011s. Only difference I'm seeing per the model year change docs is that the power outlet socket system was discontinued, and the rear view mirror camera jumped from 2.4inches to 3.3inches.


Is that something we can upgrade to if we have a 2010?
 

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Thanks for the input, much appreciated.


For whatever reason in my immediate area I'm finding that 2010's are a little more available than 2011s. Only difference I'm seeing per the model year change docs is that the power outlet socket system was discontinued, and the rear view mirror camera jumped from 2.4inches to 3.3inches.


Is that something we can upgrade to if we have a 2010?
The 110 volt power outlet wasn't discontinued, but the power switch for it on the dash was eliminated.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Thanks for all the input guys --


The stars aligned, and I was able to put a deposit down for a 2011 Rav4 V6 AWD Limited, without about 85k miles. Still young! It's white with light grey interior, no nav. Pretty much exactly what I was looking for, got it for about 16,685 including tax, title, and registration -- not bad, by what I can tell. One owner car, so must have been just a good amount of highway miles, and no accidents to speak of, and what looks to be fairly regular maintenance.


However - I have not checked out the car yet - going this weekend to see it before I sign on the dotted line. Anything I should particularly look for aside from the standard used-car fare??
 

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Discussion Starter #13
My 2010 V-6 with the JBL audio has built-in bluetooth, however, it is only good for hands-free phone use. It will not stream audio. There is an AUX jack if you want to play audio from external devices.

To the OP's original question: By the 2009 refresh, most of the issues had been shaken down in the RAVs. Other than a common sense inspection and maybe a CarFax report, you can buy with confidence.


I am reading a little about possible some steering binding/popping? Should I check if the water pump is still good, etc.? Anything else specific? I guess I can't really test the AWD without getting the car on a lift and letting them roll.


I also see some open recalls (wiper motor corrosion?) and looking into a few TSBs, not sure if they've been performed or not.
 

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I am reading a little about possible some steering binding/popping? Should I check if the water pump is still good, etc.? Anything else specific? I guess I can't really test the AWD without getting the car on a lift and letting them roll.


I also see some open recalls (wiper motor corrosion?) and looking into a few TSBs, not sure if they've been performed or not.
Very easy to test the awd...find a gravel or dirt area....in drive from a dead stop floor it....if you go the awd is fine...if you spin the front tires it's not working...when testing this if you turn off traction control (button with squiggly lines in front of cup holders...push and hold for 7-10 seconds and you will see 2 lights on the dash light up) and the tires don't have great traction you can even do donuts LOL...water pumps usually have a weeper hole on them that you can feel around and if the pump is leaking you would find fresh coolant...
 

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I also see some open recalls (wiper motor corrosion?) and looking into a few TSBs, not sure if they've been performed or not.
As I mentioned on another thread, go to Toyota.com/owners, enter your VIN and your can check the service history. It should show any outstanding warranty items, and descriptions of Toyota dealer services and recall fixes already done.

The wiper corrosion recall (for those affected) is not available for a fix yet. If yours is in the group, it will show up on the web site. Worst case scenario, I bet if your wiper stops working, the dealer will fix it!

Overall, as others have said, listen for the tranny whine issue during your test drive.

Sounds likw you scored a good deal! Methinks the 2011 V6 is in the sweet spot of RAV reliability. Good luck!
 
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Discussion Starter #16
Thanks for the input all!


Very easy to test the awd...find a gravel or dirt area....in drive from a dead stop floor it....if you go the awd is fine...if you spin the front tires it's not working...when testing this if you turn off traction control (button with squiggly lines in front of cup holders...push and hold for 7-10 seconds and you will see 2 lights on the dash light up) and the tires don't have great traction you can even do donuts LOL...water pumps usually have a weeper hole on them that you can feel around and if the pump is leaking you would find fresh coolant...


I'm not sure I'd go that far on the test drive to test the awd lol, but I will take it through it's paces and see. I'll check the color of the oil and see if there's any milky-ness in the oil. thanks for the tips!

As I mentioned on another thread, go to Toyota.com/owners, enter your VIN and your can check the service history. It should show any outstanding warranty items, and descriptions of Toyota dealer services and recall fixes already done.

The wiper corrosion recall (for those affected) is not available for a fix yet. If yours is in the group, it will show up on the web site. Worst case scenario, I bet if your wiper stops working, the dealer will fix it!

Overall, as others have said, listen for the tranny whine issue during your test drive.

Sounds likw you scored a good deal! Methinks the 2011 V6 is in the sweet spot of RAV reliability. Good luck!


Thanks! I've got the site bookmarked and I'm definitely going to go through it carefully tonight to see what TSBs and recalls have been performed - if they have not been performed, can I ask the dealer to do it for me? I could check tonight, ask them to service the car, and then pick it up on Saturday.


Wiper corrosion did show up on mine, and no fix so I'm okay there. What if I do get the transmission whine? That one is covered by a TSB, is it not?
 

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...What if I do get the transmission whine? That one is covered by a TSB, is it not?
There is a TSB on it, but unless the RAV4 is still under warranty, you would pay for the fix. It is not a recall and not regarded as a safety issue by Toyota. Keep in mind, some have this issue and regard it as a minor annoyance. Others have had their transmission replaced. From the bit of surfing I've done on this forum, seems like it was mostly an issue for the earlier V6, so perhaps less chance on the 2011. One other thing, Toyota trannies all have some noise, so use your best judgement in listening for it--or have a mechanic evaluate if you notice anything--perhaps on a lift with stethoscope.

As for warranty time limit, they are usually quite generous. Although it does seem the oil hose issue on the early V6 had a time/mileage limit. Will be interesting to hear what service history you find on your prospective 2011. Hopefully you'll be pleasantly surprised.
 
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Discussion Starter #18
There is a TSB on it, but unless the RAV4 is still under warranty, you would pay for the fix. It is not a recall and not regarded as a safety issue by Toyota. Keep in mind, some have this issue and regard it as a minor annoyance. Others have had their transmission replaced. From the bit of surfing I've done on this forum, seems like it was mostly an issue for the earlier V6, so perhaps less chance on the 2011. One other thing, Toyota trannies all have some noise, so use your best judgement in listening for it--or have a mechanic evaluate if you notice anything--perhaps on a lift with stethoscope.


Got it, thanks for the clarification.




I went ahead and punched in the #s into Toyota owners -- nothing I could see as far as TSBs or Recalls that have been addressed though. Overall pretty clean. Regular maintenance and inspections, recently had an oil change and got a new battery, and according to the dealer, new front brake (pads I'm assuming) and tires as well.


I do see a couple of notes from October of 2014 - driver's side window was making noises going down and was fixed. The differential (I'm assuming rear) was leaking, axle seal was leaking and they replaced it. Found a mouse nest in the cabin filter lol, which was cleaned.


Customer requested an alignment around 33k, didn't see anything regarding it after that -- got new tires at that time though, pretty early IMO, but found the front toe was out and aligned it.


Etc etc etc. Thankfully it looks like they almost always went to Toyota to get the car serviced


If TSBs/recalls were performed, they'd pop up in this list I'm assuming?
 

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Yeah, as I understand it, the TSB in itself is used by the shop to confirm a known issue and how to fix it, and doesn't have to be a recall item. But any TSB fix, recall or not, done at the dealer would be in the service history. Assumes dealer did the entry... You're probably not seeing much as the 2011 was largely free of recalls. By the way, be sure to click on each history item as it will have more info when you open it up.

Kind of interesting the issue with the drivers side window. There is actually a recall for many RAVs driver side window switch, but it only goes through 2010...As for the rear diff, there is a TSB for the rear diff coupler, but not the diff itself. And Toyota USA just recently extended a 9-year warranty on that coupler--and does include your 2011 V6, good for you if it crops up.

Sounds like you are going to be well prepared, but over-do it, and I may be over-loading you. Man, with this forum, it's easy to get wrapped up in little noises real and imagined. Good luck!
 
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Thanks for the input, really appreciate it. I think something was just loose as far as the window.


The only things that concern me among what I saw was it seems the previous owner may have felt tire wear was excessive or the alignment was off - which it was earlier on, but may have continued. I'll check the alignment after I get it.


Also a little concerned about the mouse nest - fairly common problem in general, but just hoping they didn't chew through any wires. Hopefully no trans noises etc., but I can live with it - I have an Evo that I used to daily drive, talk about weird awd noises lol. I'm pretty good about maintenance, do minor car repairs myself so I'm hoping to be okay on that front. It's just that it's what you don't know that hits you the hardest.


I feel pretty confident about everything though - made a list of everything I want to check and continue to add to it. I'm practically buying the car sight unseen for now, though I of course have the right to refuse. Hopefully this car is the one though! I haven't seen many blizzard pearl paints in person but I hear good things about it.
 
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