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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi Everyone, after much research, we just purchased a 2011 RAV4 Limited V6 from an independent used car dealer who bought it at auction. It's traveled 72,000 km. and most of the maintenance (I obtained the written records from Toyota) has followed Toyota's suggested maintenance schedule except for the big 62,000 km. service which will be performed next week.

Before buying it, I ran a Canadian CarProof (similar to the US CarFax) and there were no reported accidents, outstanding recalls, registration oddities etc. I even called the original owner (phone number found in glove box) and confirmed there was no paintwork ever performed under his watch. He said it was a good car with no issues for him. He simply upgrades every few years due to the mileage he puts on his vehicles.

I've spent about 12 hours on this forum reading about the 4.3's and I will continue reading until I feel I have covered all of the bases and know this vehicle inside out. However, several immediate questions pop to mind.

I have heard our tranny "whining" (not overly loudly) which is well documented on this site. I believe my vehicle is still covered under the manufacturers' Powertrain Warranty (the vehicle's in-service date was October 5, 2011) which runs 60 months or 100,000 kilometers. My questions are:

a) Is the whining simply an annoyance issue or is there something significantly wrong with the transmission that will lead to a future catastrophic transmission failure (and expensive repair for me if after the warranty period).

b) Do you recommend I ask to have this transmission diagnosed and replaced (I've read the TSB)?

2) What other issues should I be aware of and address sooner than later with this 2011 V6? (i.e. like the earlier rubber oil hose issue that I believe was rectified by the 2011 model year).

3) Also, it needs new tires and being in Canada, I run a winter and summer set mounted on separate rims. Our driving is roughly 65/35% city/highway with the exception of the occasional maintained gravel road .. no serious off roading.

a) I've decided to buy Nokian Hakka R2 SUV as winter tires mounted on 16" RAV4 steel rims. Expensive but they seem to be head and shoulders above the winter tire pack.

b) For the 3 season tires mounted on the OEM 17" alloy rims, I am undecided as there is no clear cut winner in the summer-touring three season category.

I like what I`ve read about the Continental CrossContact LX20 but they do not come in an "H" speed rating which our vehicles call for. Is the 102T rating OK to go with? ... I occasionally pull a cargo trailer with a 300 lbs. tongue weight.

TireRack rates the Pirelli Scorpion Verde All Season Plus at the top of their Crossover-SUV Touring All Season category but individual owners' comments seem more critical of this tires wet road handling capabilities. Wet traction performance is important to me given our transitional seasons.

I don`t mind spending the money for really good tires as I feel they return their value in safety, handling and tread life.

Sorry for the lengthy post. All your recommendations and suggestions are welcome. | BugJr |
 

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Congratulations on getting your '11 RAV V6, and apparently one in great shape as well! About the gearbox whine, my '11 V6 so far doesn't have that problem and from the TSB and from what has been posted on this forum the whine is much more an annoyance than one which will result in. failure. Apparently Toyota will not replace it as a preventative measure but only if it exhibits the whine problem. Other forum members will no doubt post their responses.


I don't know about the tire situation - we've used the OEM-type Bridgestones (Duelers) as replacements since for us they have been very long wearing. In the U.S. Consumer Reports magazine has tested SUV tires and has recommendations for handling, wear, and noise. But they don't test every available brand. Forum members with experience will weigh in.
 

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a) Is the whining simply an annoyance issue
Yes.

2) What other issues should I be aware of and address sooner than later with this 2011 V6? (i.e. like the earlier rubber oil hose issue that I believe was rectified by the 2011 model year).
The oil line issue in the RAV4 was for those made before 2011. Our admin has a good picture of it here.

Sorry, can't help with tires.
 

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...I've spent about 12 hours on this forum reading about the 4.3's and I will continue reading until I feel I have covered all of the bases and know this vehicle inside out.... |
Excellent. I like the longer posts when they well-informed and I appreciate you getting there by reading before posting.

The tranny whine, FOR ME--would be a no-brainer to get it replaced if you have the warranty still in place. If no warranty, would probably live with it. To me an "annoyance" like that is still a flaw and why not fix it while on Toyo's dime?

I don't have a V6, but I keep an ear out for any drive train noise as I still have warranty on my 09 I4, which has a TSB for rear diff coupler. Also, I had a Jeep CJ with a whine years ago, and it eventually drove me to hate the vehicle, as I drove a lot of highway miles. So I probably have PWS--Post Whine Syndrome--can't bear to think about having it around me.

So it might depend on your personality (i.e.hate minor flaws) and your driving habits. If driving a lot of long highway, get it changed. If mostly town car or low mileage driver, don't sweat it. Continue to do your research, some of the posts mention the replacement tranny referencing "H" in the part number as the one to get.

For tires, I put on some Continental Ecoplus Procontact and they are very good, a huge improvement over OEM. They are a 102T rated, like the Michelin Defender which I'll probably spring for next. Either one a very good 3-season tire. I've stretched my Conti's to 4 season and will see if time to anti up to dedicated winters after getting through two winters just fine.

My research (and tire shop) says you can set the RAV up more like a car with the T or go for a more robust tire with the H with a stiffer sidewall for a more truck-like need. The H is more resistant to punctures, according to some research I've done also. If any towing, or occasional forest road / unpaved driving go H. If sissy city driving like me, need a little more smooth in the ride, go T.
Anyway, welcome to the forum! And my long-winded post right back at ya, lol.
 

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Congrats on your purchase after doing all the research. Like others have said, the whine is an annoyance, but if you can get it replaced within the Powertrain timeframe, might as well.

I've had the Yokohama Prada Spec-X on mine and they've been pretty good all year round. They've done well in the rain and snow seasons.
 

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BugJr FYI - when I was shopping for non-winter tires, the local Costco tire manager told me: "he stopped putting Pirelli's on SUV & light trucks, 2 years ago / won't sell them, too many returns & complaints". They may be fantastic on touring cars, but just don't stand up on heavier vehicles.
_____________________________________

I recently put new tires on our 2008 RAV4 Limited v6, immediately after buying the used vehicle.
- sure does add to the driving pleasure & safety, nice tread design that wraps around the side walls
- the original summer tires were worn down flush, to the wear bars
- so new Firestone Destination Le2 tires installed, in size 225/65R17...100,000 Km warranty

The garage dragged their power washer outside for me, so I could hose off and clean up the aluminum rims...of years of grime & brake dust.
- very pleased with Firestone brand / price & reviews seem to be also good
- all 4 tires, only took a very small lead weight to balance
^^ that impressed me the most, evident Manufacturing quality
- set was $717 Cdn installed & balanced, incl. Ontario 13% HSTax

 

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We got a new-in-the-box transaxle installed in our '12 V6 under warranty at 38,000 km. Our only complaint was noise. I believe that noise = friction and friction = wear. It was like a new car after the fix.
Eric
 

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Congrats on your 2011 V6 Limited.

I have a 2009 V6 Sport (125,000 km) and it's been problem free. The engine runs smoothly and purrs as softly as the day it was driven off the lot. And no oil hose tomfoolery, no water pump headaches, and no annoying tranny whines, which is impossible anyway cuz my partner is a woman.:rolleyes:

I run with Yokohama Prada Spec-X tires and they are great.

I also do the Krown oil spray every winter and garage park the RAV, even in the summer.

If the cosmetic aspect of a vehicle is important, my RAV4 is one of the few here that has been given the Opti Coat Pro coating (ie, a 2nd, harder, shinier clear coat protection applied by an experienced applicator - only one here in Southern Ontario I understand.) It's amazing stuff. I wash it and wow.... looks waxed and detailed. And if you add a detail spray (Auto Glym and Zaino are great) it's so shiny it's almost not street legal. :thumbs_up:
 

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. I replaced the Toyos that my Rav4 had with General Altimax RT43 's last November. I find them to be more sure - footed and they do very well in the rain. I don't have the funds to do summer/winter sets of tires so after some research I settled on these. Last winter, my area had record snowfall and I did very well by these. While they're no Nokians, they got me though some unplowed streets & parking lots with no problems. If you got caught in an early snowstorm before you switched sets of tires, these would get you by.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
I run fresh winter tires in the winter. Old winter tires in the summer. I have two sets of rims.
Mr, PD, I did the same on my older Camry wagons. However, since our summers are shot and I have the extra set of rims for winmters, we'll no doubt end up buying both sets ... one now for winter and the summer/three season set next Spring.

We got a new-in-the-box transaxle installed in our '12 V6 under warranty at 38,000 km. Our only complaint was noise. I believe that noise = friction and friction = wear. It was like a new car after the fix.
Eric
Thanks for sharing Mr. Fab, I just had the RAV in for a major service at and they diagnosed the transaxle whining as part of the road test (I did walk in with a copy of the TSB when I pulled in this morning). They've already ordered the parts and it'll go back in next week for the transplant. They also found the left rear axle seal leaking ... and said they'd replace and cover that under warranty too.

Congrats on your 2011 V6 Limited.

I have a 2009 V6 Sport (125,000 km) and it's been problem free. The engine runs smoothly and purrs as softly as the day it was driven off the lot. I run with Yokohama Prada Spec-X tires and they are great.

I also do the Krown oil spray every winter and garage park the RAV, even in the summer. If the cosmetic aspect of a vehicle is important, my RAV4 is one of the few here that has been given the Opti Coat Pro coating (ie, a 2nd, harder, shinier clear coat protection applied by an experienced applicator - only one here in Southern Ontario I understand.) It's amazing stuff. I wash it and wow.... looks waxed and detailed. And if you add a detail spray (Auto Glym and Zaino are great) it's so shiny it's almost not street legal. :thumbs_up:
Thanks. I still find this RAV such a change from our most recent 1996 2.2.liter Camry wagon. Incredible pickup and smoothness on this V6. Appreciate you sharing your experience with the Yoko's too. I'm huge on oil spraying ... I'll also check out the Opti Coat treatment. Gotta watch the budget right now and fix the mechanical bits before crossing over to the cosmetic.

. I replaced the Toyos that my Rav4 had with General Altimax RT43 's last November. I find them to be more sure - footed and they do very well in the rain.
Thanks ... I'm reading good things about the General's.

I appreciate eveyone's responses and input. I'll let you know how my transaxle transplant goes after newt week.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
... snipped ... About the gearbox whine, my '11 V6 so far doesn't have that problem and from the TSB and from what has been posted on this forum the whine is much more an annoyance than one which will result in. failure. Apparently Toyota will not replace it as a preventative measure but only if it exhibits the whine problem.

I don't know about the tire situation - we've used the OEM-type Bridgestones (Duelers) as replacements since for us they have been very long wearing.
Thanks for your welcome note. My dealership is replacing the transaxle just because of the noise (and TSB of course). I was actually surprised how "smoothly" the discussion went. Also, thanks for sharing your input on the Bridgestones ... reading good things about them too.


Bug...tires.....my 2010 V6 has been very happy with it's Michelin Defenders. I'm a snowbird, so don't drive in snow.
Thanks, I usually buy Michelins ... just seeing if there are other/better alternatives out there.

Excellent. I like the longer posts when they well-informed and I appreciate you getting there by reading before posting.

The tranny whine, FOR ME--would be a no-brainer to get it replaced if you have the warranty still in place.

So it might depend on your personality (i.e.hate minor flaws) and your driving habits. If driving a lot of long highway, get it changed. If mostly town car or low mileage driver, don't sweat it. Continue to do your research, some of the posts mention the replacement tranny referencing "H" in the part number as the one to get.

For tires, I put on some Continental Ecoplus Procontact and they are very good, a huge improvement over OEM. They are a 102T rated, like the Michelin Defender which I'll probably spring for next.

My research (and tire shop) says you can set the RAV up more like a car with the T or go for a more robust tire with the H with a stiffer sidewall for a more truck-like need.
Thanks for your input and for the tire tips. I'm looking for the "H" rated tires simply because we tow occasionally and a stiffer sidewall is not a bad thing for that. Also we do longer trips and noticed on last weekends short 2 hour trip, the whine was in the background but noticeable.

... snipped Like others have said, the whine is an annoyance, but if you can get it replaced within the Powertrain timeframe, might as well.

I've had the Yokohama Prada Spec-X on mine and they've been pretty good all year round. They've done well in the rain and snow seasons.
Thanks for your input KTL.

This forum is terrific ... I really do appreciate you sharing your opinions and experiences. Thanks a bunch! ~ Len ~
 

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Congrats on your 2011 V6 Limited.

I run with Yokohama Prada Spec-X tires and they are great.

I also do the Krown oil spray every winter and garage park the RAV, even in the summer.

If the cosmetic aspect of a vehicle is important, my RAV4 is one of the few here that has been given the Opti Coat Pro coating (ie, a 2nd, harder, shinier clear coat protection applied by an experienced applicator - only one here in Southern Ontario I understand.) It's amazing stuff. I wash it and wow.... looks waxed and detailed. And if you add a detail spray (Auto Glym and Zaino are great) it's so shiny it's almost not street legal. :thumbs_up:
+1 on the parade Spec-X, I loved those on my 2007

+1 on the krown

for the coating, I like Cquartz Finest better :p best 10 hours I ever worked on a car!
 
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