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Dear fellow avalon owners, i'm new to the club here (again i appreciate the approval from admin's)

I recently came into ownership of in my opinion one very clean & definitely rare late 04' build Mark III Avalon Grande. with a complete and full toyota service history to back it up.

Best thing is, everything works - sunroof was cleaned & greased properly on a regular basis. etc etc

it's got over 200k on it yet it's still running 5w30 full synthetic, doesn't  burn a single drop in between services (i mean within the exception of PCV vapours obviously, but i never have to add oil

Just last year the entire intake manifold was off along with all the injectors being fully cleaned/tested or rebuilt depending (only going off what Toyota documents i have) - the manifold was fully cleaned inside out. 

I also managed to track down both spec sheets including full features list, specs, etc

In my opinion i've always had a soft spot for the Avalon amongst other toyota models, with the exception of the Avalon could have been a superior product, along with that old school luxury which personally i adore, when Toyota Australia took over the MCX10R Avalon tooling from the good ol'e US of A, we made a solid car even better. and for the time, it didn't sell, but by the Mark III, they had a certain level of Lexus solidity. But just how over-built they are after seeing one in person really astounded me. Yes it does't have TCS, but half the time Commodore & Falcon TCS systems at the time were primitive at best. The level of refinement within a Mark III is quite impressive with the yanks to thank for certain items in my opinion Ford & GM never thought of. 

Top 5 features i really admire that isn't offered by Ford or Holden at the time.

 

1. Electric sunroof with tilt & slide as standard equipment on Grande models.

2. Standard navigation DVD based system that still can be updated even now because the system is still quite user friendly once you get the hang of it.

3. Active front seat headrests that both adjust up & down but also can tilt forward towards you or further back to improve your driving position.

4. "Cool Air Bypass Switch" - Air flows from the centre vents within the following settings, not only is it a safety feature, it's quite nifty.

5. That extra comfortable Lexus-like leather they used on the Avalon's which stood up well over time.

 

 

All in all, i'm hard pressed to find a top spec Ford or Holden of the time that had navigation that either worked or was optioned for originally.

Along with the touch points feeling of a much higher quality finish

Will the Avalon catch on ?, only to those who are willing to give an otherwise brilliant car the time of day for.....

S_T_P_AVA_BR_VBR_03-04_AVALON0304_Avalon Brochure - March 2004.pdf

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Welcome to the forum Tom, sounds like you found a real gem so congratulations..a family member had a 2004 Avalon and loved it so I am sure there are others out there like-minded who will welcome you to the forum

Stay Safe

KAA

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2 hours ago, KAA said:

Welcome to the forum Tom, sounds like you found a real gem so congratulations..a family member had a 2004 Avalon and loved it so I am sure there are others out there like-minded who will welcome you to the forum

Stay Safe

KAA

Just finding out hidden things considering they were very closely related to the US model but we made them structurally so much stronger 🤣🤣🤣

 

Relevant features, info, etc - very tedious but there's less on the road than Commodore's & Falcon's, less than 10k mark 3's were built 

They're definitely a gem deep down underneath the skin, especially the 1MZ-FE which has one minor sludge issue (mine hasn't), people say they're underpowered ?

Ummmm when you look at the Lexus applications making 150kw/300nm+ out of a 3L ?, Ford needed a 4L to muster 157kw & Holden mustered 152kw out of a 3.8L

They're a stout motor compared to the later 3.3L which is an interference engine, the 1MZ-FE ISN'T an interference engine.

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41 minutes ago, TommyM said:

They're a stout motor compared to the later 3.3L which is an interference engine, the 1MZ-FE ISN'T an interference engine.

That is a real bonus feature particularly when the engine has a timing belt. Regular oil changes with a quality oil will address the oil sludge issue. 

https://www.toyotanation.com/threads/camry-2002-v6-1mz-fe-timing-belt-ever-break-at-what-mileage.808442/page-2

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55 minutes ago, campbeam said:

That is a real bonus feature particularly when the engine has a timing belt. Regular oil changes with a quality oil will address the oil sludge issue. 

https://www.toyotanation.com/threads/camry-2002-v6-1mz-fe-timing-belt-ever-break-at-what-mileage.808442/page-2

I don't have a sludge issue so i'm not worried 🤣

 

The 3.5's in later Camry's are notorious for gelling/sludge. Good quality oil by the book 5w30 full synthetic or 10w30 alternatively but 5w30 they prefer long term, regardless of km's

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My Dad had a 2000 model Avalon VX and it was a superior vehicle. Ran like a clock. He'd have it serviced regularly and it had well over 300, 000 kays on the clock before deciding to upgrade to a brand new Aurion. He only did this after he saw my 2012 Prodigy I purchased at the time and he fell in love with it, so he went and treated himself. He still has it and says it's the best car he'd ever had besides the Avalon. It's a shame it didn't quite catch on here, but in the U.S, the Avalon is a huge success. Have you seen the latest TRD version ??

OMG !! Why do the Americans get the nicest cars ?? If they sold this car here, I'd have one in a heartbeat !!

 

 

Edited by Tony Prodigy
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Nice car, shame about the presenter's rating system. So after looking at a few other Toyota Avalon YouTubes, I liked this one, 

 Oh to be young again with lots of money, enough brains and experience not to become a road casualty. 

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On 5/30/2020 at 4:03 PM, Tony Prodigy said:

My Dad had a 2000 model Avalon VX and it was a superior vehicle. Ran like a clock. He'd have it serviced regularly and it had well over 300, 000 kays on the clock before deciding to upgrade to a brand new Aurion. He only did this after he saw my 2012 Prodigy I purchased at the time and he fell in love with it, so he went and treated himself. He still has it and says it's the best car he'd ever had besides the Avalon. It's a shame it didn't quite catch on here, but in the U.S, the Avalon is a huge success. Have you seen the latest TRD version ??

OMG !! Why do the Americans get the nicest cars ?? If they sold this car here, I'd have one in a heartbeat !!

 

 

That's a very good question, it's a bit like the old Avalon, it was a pretty big seller in the states when it was new on the market, although it didn't really catch on here in Australia, as i mentioned, it's a really underappreciated car, because yes it has part relation to the Camry, but the wheelbase is longer, slightly wider, etc - by comparison i'd much rather have an Avalon with 4 airbags over a camry with 1, the 1MZ-FE was always bagged for sludging, but some have gone well in excess of 350k without a drop of sludge. which brings to my attention that people are selectively choosing to still change oil at 10,000km intervals with semi-synthetic oil, it's an age old question that 1MZ-FE's do last and are a lot less sludge prone using a full synthetic oil. Also, they have a standard service every 15,000km BUT,BUT,BUT there's an "interim" service that's in all 1MZ-FE owners manuals have oil changes stated every 7,500km (not 10k like i see people doing). But lucky for me, the previous owner was doing it every 6 months or 7,500km (whichever came first). But the majority of people never look, they only go off what's told to them, i'm aware that oils have changed since 2004, but the service intervals originally printed in the book, the dealership might say "next service in 10k km's", NO, simply NO, read the book, it says 7500km, so i plan on keeping it at 7500 km or 6 months (basically an interim service at 6 months & full service at 12 months). 

At least our Avalon got some of the old ES300 goodies which was fantastic, the Mark 3 Avalon had more of a Lexus-like rear end which really looked cleaner than Mark 1 & 2 models.

I'm just stuck on wether to keep it on 5w30 or go to a 0w30

 

If you look at the images provided to any 1MZ-FE owner, the service intervals are 7500km, simple ! 20200606_022622.thumb.jpg.87f7bd2b1d3d403f9c026a9f70745566.jpg20200606_022531.thumb.jpg.613b91fbcac38357a9509b77146218bd.jpg20200606_022444.thumb.jpg.623bb5d2a8ba9116a628d12ebba665a3.jpg

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5 hours ago, TommyM said:

I'm just stuck on wether to keep it on 5w30 or go to a 0w30

Usual answer to this oil viscosity question is to check the owners manual for your specific vehicle. It is also dependent upon the ambient temperature particularly when you first start the vehicle and daily temperature range. After the recent cold snap, I am going to change the engine oil from 10W30 to 5W30.

I am planning my annual road trip for October/November this year assuming that the border between QLD and NSW is open. With daytime temperatures of 34+C and air conditioning on full, I will be using a higher oil viscosity 10W40 or 5W40 to better handle those operating conditions.

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13 minutes ago, campbeam said:

It is also dependent upon the ambient temperature particularly when you first start the vehicle and daily temperature range. After the recent cold snap, I am going to change the engine oil from 10W30 to 5W30.

I think it would be prudent to do this during the winter cycle and then go to the 5w-40 during the hot season.

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5 hours ago, TommyM said:

That's a very good question, it's a bit like the old Avalon, it was a pretty big seller in the states when it was new on the market, although it didn't really catch on here in Australia, as i mentioned, it's a really underappreciated car, because yes it has part relation to the Camry, but the wheelbase is longer, slightly wider, etc - by comparison i'd much rather have an Avalon with 4 airbags over a camry with 1, the 1MZ-FE was always bagged for sludging, but some have gone well in excess of 350k without a drop of sludge. which brings to my attention that people are selectively choosing to still change oil at 10,000km intervals with semi-synthetic oil, it's an age old question that 1MZ-FE's do last and are a lot less sludge prone using a full synthetic oil. Also, they have a standard service every 15,000km BUT,BUT,BUT there's an "interim" service that's in all 1MZ-FE owners manuals have oil changes stated every 7,500km (not 10k like i see people doing). But lucky for me, the previous owner was doing it every 6 months or 7,500km (whichever came first). But the majority of people never look, they only go off what's told to them, i'm aware that oils have changed since 2004, but the service intervals originally printed in the book, the dealership might say "next service in 10k km's", NO, simply NO, read the book, it says 7500km, so i plan on keeping it at 7500 km or 6 months (basically an interim service at 6 months & full service at 12 months). 

At least our Avalon got some of the old ES300 goodies which was fantastic, the Mark 3 Avalon had more of a Lexus-like rear end which really looked cleaner than Mark 1 & 2 models.

I'm just stuck on wether to keep it on 5w30 or go to a 0w30

 

If you look at the images provided to any 1MZ-FE owner, the service intervals are 7500km, simple ! 

Yep, It clearly states 202,500 then the following one is 210,000. They must have known that the 1MZ-FE was prone to sludge as is the 2GR-FE using inferior non synthetic oils. For what it's worth I never skimp on oil quality. I always use so called "fully synthetic" even if they won't tell you what it's actually made from.

Oil threads can get volatile with the amount of mis-information and opinions, so as a rule of thumb, just follow what the manufacturer recommendations are, stick to this and you can't go wrong. Just don't use mineral oil lol...

Enjoy your Avalon Tommy, they are a nice old car :thumbsup:

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6 hours ago, Tony Prodigy said:

Yep, It clearly states 202,500 then the following one is 210,000. They must have known that the 1MZ-FE was prone to sludge as is the 2GR-FE using inferior non synthetic oils. For what it's worth I never skimp on oil quality. I always use so called "fully synthetic" even if they won't tell you what it's actually made from.

Oil threads can get volatile with the amount of mis-information and opinions, so as a rule of thumb, just follow what the manufacturer recommendations are, stick to this and you can't go wrong. Just don't use mineral oil lol...

Enjoy your Avalon Tommy, they are a nice old car :thumbsup:

With the revised PCV system, etc the only 1MZ's affected by sludge were 1996 - 2001 globally, revision basically rectified every 1MZ 2002 - end of production. Toyota made the oil changes to every 7500km not just for sludge, but to better protect owners long term, and the fact that Toyota went above and beyond to make maintenance simple/well planned, but every 7500km is perfect, even in a brand new car i would still change it every 7500km, but that's just me & the experience i have with varying engines. They made the 1MZ's to last with high quality oils, etc. Later 3.5's were more notorious for sludge over the 1MZ, for some reason...

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7 hours ago, Tony Prodigy said:

I think it would be prudent to do this during the winter cycle and then go to the 5w-40 during the hot season.

I wouldn't be running a 40 weight oil in a 1MZ, anything above a 30 weight then they tend to be a bit lethargic, 5w30 by the book

Offers a more broad heat range over 10w30 & 15w40

5w30 i know is the preferred oil for 1MZ's, by Toyota. Unless you're ****** out oil, then i think you need some engine re-sealing lol

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7 hours ago, campbeam said:

Usual answer to this oil viscosity question is to check the owners manual for your specific vehicle. It is also dependent upon the ambient temperature particularly when you first start the vehicle and daily temperature range. After the recent cold snap, I am going to change the engine oil from 10W30 to 5W30.

I am planning my annual road trip for October/November this year assuming that the border between QLD and NSW is open. With daytime temperatures of 34+C and air conditioning on full, I will be using a higher oil viscosity 10W40 or 5W40 to better handle those operating conditions.

Heat range, viscosity index, tbn, etc

A high quality full synthetic 5w30 offers very comparable protection to a 5w40, in terms of flashpoint, etc

Very negligible, the viscosity at 40°C & 100°C is what i go by. I know the old trick in the book is use thicker oil, but that just isn't necessary. Especially with basically newer engines (made after 2000). 

I'm considering a Valvoline Toyota specific 0w30 simply because the tbn, flashpoint, viscosity index, etc are fantastic 

Tbn is around 10.3 vs commonly 8.5 from Penrite, etc

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22 hours ago, Tony Prodigy said:

I think it would be prudent to do this during the winter cycle and then go to the 5w-40 during the hot season.

Stupid question, does anybody know the default cooling fans strategy ?, i've been trying to find info, but nothing definitive has popped up.

 

Cooling fan ON - @ what °C ?

Cooling fan OFF - @ what °C ?

 

A/C high pressure toggles high speed cooling fans at what kpa/psi, do the cooling fans vary in speed according to the A/C load, or simply have a low & high speed depending on system pressure.

Cheers !

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16 hours ago, TommyM said:

I wouldn't be running a 40 weight oil in a 1MZ, anything above a 30 weight then they tend to be a bit lethargic, 5w30 by the book

We were referring to our own 2GR-FE Aurions. Plenty of members here, past and present have used Penrite 40 weight with no adverse affects.

Here's what it states in my user manual for the 50 series Aurion. I'm sure it's the same for the 40 too.

 

20200607_072727 - Copy.jpg

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16 hours ago, TommyM said:

A high quality full synthetic 

I'm no oil expert but I think that's the operable word. Most of us either use the Nulon or Penrite brands. One, they are Australian made and two, they are excellent products.

I've been using the Nulon product since my purchase from 40K on the ODO to present (~120K) and I do it every 10K without a hint of sludge in fact. I couldn't be sure how those with sludged up engines treat their cars but mine is very clean.

If the 40w provides that litle bit extra during the punishment of the summer heat then I'm all for it too.

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1 hour ago, TommyM said:

Stupid question, does anybody know the default cooling fans strategy ?, i've been trying to find info, but nothing definitive has popped up.

 

Cooling fan ON - @ what °C ?

Cooling fan OFF - @ what °C ?

 

A/C high pressure toggles high speed cooling fans at what kpa/psi, do the cooling fans vary in speed according to the A/C load, or simply have a low & high speed depending on system pressure.

Cheers !

Not a stupid question at all. I would hazard a guess and say that you may be able to find technical info like that in a workshop manual. I couldn't be sure or ask someone from Toyota service as they have access to all that technical data.

As far as the fans varying speeds according to load, that would be a simple no. They aren't that sophisticated that they'd install a variable speed drive device. They are as analogue as they come with relays and switches. 

Just out of interest, why do you need to know such information ?

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7 hours ago, Tony Prodigy said:

Not a stupid question at all. I would hazard a guess and say that you may be able to find technical info like that in a workshop manual. I couldn't be sure or ask someone from Toyota service as they have access to all that technical data.

As far as the fans varying speeds according to load, that would be a simple no. They aren't that sophisticated that they'd install a variable speed drive device. They are as analogue as they come with relays and switches. 

Just out of interest, why do you need to know such information ?

I'm just a nosey *****, just trying to familiarise myself with what to expect based on temperatures, etc etc

Yeah analogue isn't a bad thing, you've got 2 speeds, low & high, depending on if A. The engine calls for the high speed cooling fan or B. The a/c system pressure gets above a certain threshold (mostly in summer where load is high & system pressures increase due to that extra load, i'm presuming)

I mean.... running a 40 weight oil might not be that bad, personally i'd run a 0w40 if i decided to run a 40 weight, otherwise i'd just stick with the preferred 5w30. I'm still considering giving 0w40 a try, but not sure if i should considering it runs like silk still on 5w30. 

Having not owned a Toyota before now, just simply trying to understand more i guess, probably should get a workshop manual 😄

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7 hours ago, Tony Prodigy said:

I'm no oil expert but I think that's the operable word. Most of us either use the Nulon or Penrite brands. One, they are Australian made and two, they are excellent products.

I've been using the Nulon product since my purchase from 40K on the ODO to present (~120K) and I do it every 10K without a hint of sludge in fact. I couldn't be sure how those with sludged up engines treat their cars but mine is very clean.

If the 40w provides that litle bit extra during the punishment of the summer heat then I'm all for it too.

Yeah Nulon oils are great, especially those with MolyDTC, more slippery than a high zinc content oil, but not all nulon oils contain zinc as the main anti-wear package, where as i know the 5w30 doesn't, but 5w40, diesel 5w30 & a few others contain MolyDTC

But Penrite's HPR range is near untouchable

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37 minutes ago, TommyM said:

But Penrite's HPR range is near untouchable

I have 4 x 6lt of the Penrite HPR 5w -30 in stock and will most likely transition to this after my current stock of Nulon is used. The importance of the Zinc content was brought to my attention some time back by our esteemed colleague, Ashley (campbeam) and so when SCA had these on special I purchased 4 and because they also come in a 6lt package. Perfect !

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45 minutes ago, TommyM said:

Having not owned a Toyota before now, just simply trying to understand more i guess, probably should get a workshop manual 😄

I think that would be very beneficial. I wasn't able to find a specific workshop manual for the 50 series Aurion but another member here, Mark, (mg85, thanks again) was kind enough to send me a CD rom of a 40 series manual which does help in the mechanical dept as they both share a lot mechanically.

 

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1 hour ago, Tony Prodigy said:

I think that would be very beneficial. I wasn't able to find a specific workshop manual for the 50 series Aurion but another member here, Mark, (mg85, thanks again) was kind enough to send me a CD rom of a 40 series manual which does help in the mechanical dept as they both share a lot mechanically.

 

Hey, it's up to you entirely, but the 1MZ's were built around the time of tight tolerances, pretty much most cars post 2010'ish have looser tolerances to "reduce" friction & "improve" fuel efficiency, personally i think it's an excuse to cut costs, but i'm relatively old school even though i'm 23 😁

The only 5w30 i've seen from penrite is non-hpr range (more the vantage, etc) - which in my opinion from experience are no where near as good. I know there is a HPR 0w30 & 0w40

Maybe try them ?

I considered the 10 tenths racing 5w30 due to the high zinc content, but in saying that, the flashpoint was 30°C+ lower than comparable oils that had similar protection but higher flashpoint, TBN's were similar, etc

Maybe try Valvoline SynPower 0w30 ? (Toyota/Ford spec), very high tbn of 10.1

Compared to other fourms i've been part of, i can say Toyota's fourm is definitely more knowledgeable, inviting, helpful & talkative so thanks !

Edited by TommyM
Typo

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3 hours ago, TommyM said:

Having not owned a Toyota before now, just simply trying to understand more i guess, probably should get a workshop manual

Absolutely, your workshop manual is your source of truth [as at the version date and Country e.g. USA vs Asia Pacific].

When it comes to recommended oil viscosity range, always refer to your owner's manual.

I regularly look at the Lube Guides for Penrite, Nulon etc for my specific vehicle. What I have noticed is that the preferred engine oil has changed over the years perhaps in line with he latest oil specifications, developments etc.

This is now the preferred oil for my 2006 Toyota Aurion with the 2GR-FE engine. https://www.penriteoil.com.au/products/hpr-5-5w-40-full-synthetic

It has a TBN of 10.4  https://www.penriteoil.com.au/assets/pis_pdfs/HPR 5 5W-40 (Full Synthetic).pdf

In contrast, the next recommended oil has a TBN of 10.2 https://www.penriteoil.com.au/products/full-synthetic-10w-40

When I did an oil change today, I ended up using a combination of Shell Ultra 5W-30 and 5W-40 because that is what I had previously bought on special probably a few years ago and was immediately available.

It is very easy to get engrossed in the technical details/specifications but at the end of the day, I am going to buy the best quality oil suitable for my vehicle at the best sale price.

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49 minutes ago, campbeam said:

Absolutely, your workshop manual is your source of truth [as at the version date and Country e.g. USA vs Asia Pacific].

When it comes to recommended oil viscosity range, always refer to your owner's manual.

I regularly look at the Lube Guides for Penrite, Nulon etc for my specific vehicle. What I have noticed is that the preferred engine oil has changed over the years perhaps in line with he latest oil specifications, developments etc.

This is now the preferred oil for my 2006 Toyota Aurion with the 2GR-FE engine. https://www.penriteoil.com.au/products/hpr-5-5w-40-full-synthetic

It has a TBN of 10.4  https://www.penriteoil.com.au/assets/pis_pdfs/HPR 5 5W-40 (Full Synthetic).pdf

In contrast, the next recommended oil has a TBN of 10.2 https://www.penriteoil.com.au/products/full-synthetic-10w-40

When I did an oil change today, I ended up using a combination of Shell Ultra 5W-30 and 5W-40 because that is what I had previously bought on special probably a few years ago and was immediately available.

It is very easy to get engrossed in the technical details/specifications but at the end of the day, I am going to buy the best quality oil suitable for my vehicle at the best sale price.

It is, hence why i was considering a 0w30 or 0w40, higher tbn's

Toyota adjusted the oil visco for 1MZ's later on, so i'm simply tossing up options as to what is going to suit best based on how well it's kept after 234k on 5w30, etc

Shell Helix Ultra with PurePlus (made of natural gas), i really was interested in considering it's apparently brilliant oil, great at cleaning, wear, etc

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