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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
2 / 0
Average Mileage:
84,372 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2005 Toyota Corolla engine problems

engine problem

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2005 Toyota Corolla Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #21

Nov 012008


  • miles


In late 2004, I financed a brand new 2005 Toyota Corolla while residing in South Florida. In summer 2008, I relocated to Massachusetts. It was in winter 2008 that the engine warning lamp illuminated. I immediately took the vehicle to a Toyota dealership. I wasn't really given a real explanation of why the warning lamp was illuminated. I was quickly told it could be fixed. So I paid approx. $800 to supposedly have it fixed. Literally, two weeks later the engine warning lamp came back on. I took it back to the same Toyota dealership and they told me they don't know what's wrong and would have to run more diagnostic test that would cost additional money. At the time, I did not have additional money since I had just dished out nearly $800. I have taken the vehicle to independent auto shops in which they have not been able to diagnose the problem. In the state of Massachusetts, yearly inspections of an operating vehicle is required. For the past years, I have had to have the light manually turned off hoping that it would not come on in time for the car to be inspected. The car has failed on several occasions because the engine warning lamp illuminated. In addition to the engine warning lamp being illuminated, I have also and still experience harsh shifting. The harsh shifting started approx. In late 2009/2010. I also started noticing decreased lighting visibility in 2011. At night, I have to drive with my high beams to see properly. Out of frustration, I gave up on trying to find the cause for these issues. I just dealt with it. I don't frequently use the vehicle now because I live in an area that is accessible to public transportation that allows me to get to work. Most recently, I was informed by a fellow Corolla owner that in 2009-2010 Toyota recalled for engine and engine cooling and headlamps. I never received notifications of such recalls!

- Attleboro, MA, USA

problem #20

Mar 052016


  • miles
There was a recall on Toyota's engine control modules. I took my car in and had it replaced in 2012 due to a failed emissions inspection. In 2016, im having the same issue again and Toyota refuses to do anything about it.

- Alexandria, VA, USA

problem #19

Oct 162015


  • 143,433 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Toyota Corolla. While driving at 65 mph, the vehicle stalled and the check engine light illuminated on the instrument panel. The vehicle was able to restart after the initial attempt. The vehicle was towed to the dealer where it was diagnosed that the engine control module (ECM) failed and needed to be repaired. The vehicle was not repaired. The vehicle was serviced under NHTSA campaign number: 10V384000 (engine and engine cooling), but the remedy failed to repair the vehicle. The contact mentioned that the vehicle continued to stall after the recall repair. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure mileage was 143,433.

- Jonesville, SC, USA

problem #18

Sep 012015


  • 58,000 miles


The contact owns a 2005 Toyota Corolla. The contact stated that while driving approximately 40 mph, the check engine warning indicator illuminated. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic who diagnosed that the ECM module needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The contact stated that the VIN was not included in NHTSA campaign number: 10V384000 (engine and engine cooling). The approximate failure mileage was 58,000. The VIN was unavailable.

- Livermore, CA, USA

problem #17

Aug 122015


  • 95,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Toyota Corolla. While driving at 5 mph, the vehicle revved violently and suddenly returned to normal. The failure was recurring. The contact stated that the vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic for diagnostic testing. The technician stated that there was no cable to adjust the idling because the vehicle had fuel injection. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 95,000.

- Lake Steven, WA, USA

problem #16

Jul 162015


  • 113,198 miles
I had a malfunctioning timing chain and its parts, and an engine problem on my Toyota Corolla 2005 without prior warring, such as an engine check light, rattling, knocking, or stalling. Also I wasn't aware that these problems could happen because there isn't any timing chain system maintenance in the Toyota 2005 scheduled maintenance guide booklet. The independent mechanic who repaired my car thought that the tensioner on the timing chain may have had a problem that caused the cam gear to wear out, so that the timing chain slipped off the cam gear. Then, the problem caused the engine valves to be bent. Finally my car got fixed. The problem occurred in a shopping mall parking lot when I started the engine, I felt boom, boom, knocking coming from the front of the car. I drove out of the parking lot carefully, but I was concerned because it was the first time I ever had this knocking from the car. So I stopped in a different parking lot of the same mall. I looked under the hood and checked the drive belt, which was intact. There was no foul smell. I restarted the car and paid attention to anything unusual. I heard rattling and I decided to take my car to an auto mechanic shop, which is closer than going home. With my emergency light on, I drove into the street less mile when I heard sounds like metal or soda cans crushing around in the engine. Then my car slowly stopped and the engine stopped. I put the car in neutral and slid down to the side of the road, barely off the road. Eventually my car was towed to the auto shop. I have a worn out cam gear, a tensioner with a few fine cracks, bent valves and the timing chain. I called Toyota customer service on July 24, 2015. But I was told that since the car warranty of 60,000 miles had passed and I didn't take my car to a Toyota authorized auto shop they won't deal with my car problem.

- Tacoma, WA, USA

problem #15

Jun 102015


  • 90,800 miles


Dear all, in my Toyota Corolla 2005 car, check engine sign are coming and going. There is some issue with fuel pump or gas tank. I have asked the same to Toyota dealership but they have no answer for the same. They are saying for checking I have to pay 150+ usd. As this is a mechanical issue, please help me to deal with the same.

- Jersey City, NJ, USA

problem #14

Aug 282014


  • 115,000 miles
This problem has occurred frequently since the first event: For no known reason, engine rpms drop to point where vehicle barely moving. Can shut vehicle off and restart and problem goes away. Check engine light comes on but no help in diagnosis. Been to dealer several times. Replaced ECM and tried other possible "fixes". so far, has only occurred in rural areas at speeds of 35 mph or less. Fortunately not much traffic. Check engine light will go off by itself as problem "fixes itself". a potentially dangerous situation but no answers from dealer or manufacturer.

- Merrill, NY, USA

problem #13

Mar 052013

Corolla 4-cyl

  • 100,000 miles
The car pops out the 6th gear. It is also harsh when shifting gears, brakes have noise, air bags sign off.the car has shut off while driving and front suspension sounds horrible.

- Carolina, PR, USA

problem #12

Dec 012008


  • 31,427 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Toyota Corolla. The contact stated that while driving 35 mph, an abnormal sound emitted from the engine. The problem recurred numerous times. The vehicle was taken to a dealer. The mechanic diagnosed that the drive belt failed and needed to be replaced. The vehicle was repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 31,427.

- Las Vegas, NV, USA

problem #11

Oct 082014


  • 190,000 miles


The contact owns a 2005 Toyota Corolla. The contact stated while driving approximately 1 mph, the engine stalled without warning. The contact was able to restart the vehicle after several attempts. The failure recurred five times. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 190,000.

- New Hope, AL, USA

problem #10

Oct 162013

Corolla 4WD 4-cyl

  • 67,000 miles
Around 1:30 pm on 10/16/2013 as I was leaving a restaurant, I was parked, with my foot on the brakes. My car accelerated violently and I ran right into the back side panel of another car. It was a few feet up the road before I could get it stopped. My son was right behind me and can verify all details. My car was towed to bradshaw collision center in greer, SC. After they inspected my car "thoroughly", they said, "based on our inspection of your vehicle it has been determined it was not the result of any type of manufacturing or design defect. In June 2014, as I was parked in my son's yard it accelerated again but I had to slam it into neutral before I hit his car.once again, my son saw that.when my foot is on the brake, while waiting on a light to change it will lung forward. Therefore, I am resolved to have to take the back roads. As a result of this accident, I have started having vertigo, for which I have to take medication. I am a perfect driver. I am 68 and many times I have my 3 yr old granddaughter in the car with me. It scares me to drive my own car now. I have a letter from the legal claims administrator from Toyota motor sales, U.S.a Inc. Dated 12/04/2013. This letter tells me there is nothing wrong with my car.

- Greenville, SC, USA

problem #9

Aug 162014

Corolla 4-cyl

  • 129,374 miles
Before incident occur I was driving on highway near lake mead I was going up a hill high elevation I notice while driving RPM was staying on 4 or above like it wouldn't reduce transmission was piercing as I reached top of hill and going down RPM finally drop I stop to put gas drove now flat highway went about 4 miles from gas station heard a loud bag thought it was a blow out check tires all good open engine saw oil spill so I new cant drive was towed to bullhead city Arizona where my family lives which I was visiting ( I live in los angeles) found mechanic a week ago had it towed to..... 1591 ramer road bull head city tom mechanic is now explaining to me threw a rod into the engine block breaking block from the inside out? my vehicle has been well maintained I work for a dealership first long trip I went on in a long time my vehicle mileage is low I have never heard a Toyota engine rod going out with so low mileage there has to be a mechanical defect on this engine I have done my research with different Toyota dealership mechanic wear I live and they say this is not comin please help me and feel free to contact me to give you mechanic info. I just paid my car off... know I will await your response please help me asap I am carless.....

- Sylmar , CA, USA

problem #8

Jul 112014


  • 152,379 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Toyota Corolla. The contact stated the vehicle was shaking as the check engine warning light illuminated. A dealer made unknown repairs to the vehicle but the failure recurred. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The failure and current mileage was 152,379.

- Nashville, TN, USA

problem #7

Nov 302007

Corolla 4-cyl

  • 52,500 miles
I just purchased my 2005 Corolla 3 months prior to this incident and it was a fairly new car but it had the check engine light on with in the first month I had it. On the day of the incident the weather nice and pleasant & I was soberly driving home from nursing school in san jose along in the middle lane of a 3 lane street at the legal speed limit of 35 miles an hour. About 600 feet ahead there was a yellowing stoplight and two cars slowing down nearing the stoplight. I put on the brakes normally as I thought there was plenty of space to come to a stop however it felt like instead of slowing the car suprisingly sped up and instantly I was smelling gunpowder after a sharp painful jarring smack. The airbags had deployed and was a ripped up mess from my steering wheel. I hit the car in front of me and was so dazed and shocked and my wrist had shattered requiring reparative surgery and rehabilitation however it's still not ok. Due to my confusion I denied medical treatment until a few days later. This confusion still affects me badly now as I suffer from severe ptsd. The police took pictures and a report. The people in the car I hit were taken by ambulance. & recommended I be taken as well but I refused. The car had been totaled with severe body damage to the front and a bent frame that it was able to drive from the scene. I was terrified that somebody either tampered with my car and brakes or either I was clinically insane to make it illogically speed up & it wasn't until I learned of the recalls only a few days ago that I realized maybe the accident wasn't all my fault & I should report it here. Toyota corporation has done nothing to send me notifications of any recalls or problems ever.

- San Francisco, CA, USA

problem #6

Feb 022014


  • 140,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Toyota Corolla. The contact stated while driving approximately 45 mph, the engine warning indicator illuminated in conjunction to harsh shifting. The vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic for diagnostic testing. A trouble code detected a malfunction with the clutch solenoid. There was a recall related to the failure under NHTSA campaign id number 10V384000 (engine and engine cooling) however, the VIN was not included. The vehicle had not been repaired. The manufacturer was notified of the defect. The approximate failure mileage was 140,000.

- Jacksonville, FL, USA

problem #5

Jan 032014

Corolla 4-cyl

  • 88,347 miles
In January of 2013 and again in December of 2013, my "check engine" light came on. I took the car into the Toyota dealership in san luis obispo and they said that the O2 sensor was malfunctioning, causing the engine to run too lean. The first time this happened (January, 2013) the service writer gave me an estimate to replace the "plenum gasket and O2 sensor" but said there was nothing to worry about if I elected not to have this repair done. When the "check engine" light came on again in December, 2013, I became alarmed and took my 2005 Toyota Corolla to an authorized Toyota repair shop (not the san luis obispo dealership) and was told that there was high probability that the valves would burn out if I did not replace the O2 sensor (bank one, sensor one) and plenum gasket. I felt this was urgent and took it to the san luis obispo Toyota dealer for the repair, costing me over $400. Note that I found a Toyota technical service bulletin ("M.I.L "on" dtc PO171 or P2195", models '05-'06 Corolla and matrix) dated November 16, 2005 (we bought the car in March or April, 2005) which stated "under certain driving conditions, some 2005 and 2006 model year Corolla and matrix vehicles may exhibit a mil "on" condition with at least one of the following dtc's: PO171 (system too lean, bank 1"). further, it stated "the air fuel (A/F) sensor manufacturing process has been improved to correct this condition". note that I never received correspondence or a notice from Toyota about this condition. On 1-2-14 I emailed Toyota (ref: 140102-000196) to ask about this and to ask their consideration to cover some of the cost of the repair, and I received an email back from a "renee T.", Toyota customer experience stating "a tsb (technical service bulletin) is not a recall or a special service campaign" and that Toyota and basically brushed my concern aside.

- San Luis Obispo, CA, USA

problem #4

Jul 012013

Corolla 4-cyl

  • miles
Auto en ocasiones no acelera. Naguabo auto reemplazo computadora (PCM). Problema continua. SE entiende que ES un defecto de fabrica segun aviso enviado pero no SE quieren responsabilizar.

- Yabucoa , PR, USA

problem #3

Jan 102011

Corolla 4-cyl

  • 60,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Toyota Corolla. The contact stated that the vehicle stalled without warning and the check engine lamp illuminated. The contact took the vehicle to the dealer and was told that the engine control module needed to be replaced for a third time. The manufacturer was contacted and informed the contact that the vehicle was not included in NHTSA campaign id number: 10V384000 (engine and cooling). The failure mileage was 60,000 and the current mileage was 130,000.

- Akorn, OH, USA

problem #2

Nov 022011


  • 76,043 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Toyota Corolla. The contact stated that the vehicle was repaired under the recall associated with NHTSA campaign id number: 10V384000 (engine and engine cooling). After the repair, the check engine warning lamp illuminated and the vehicle unexpectedly downshifted. The vehicle was towed to the dealer, who diagnosed that the ECM was defective and needed to be replaced. The manufacturer was made aware of the failure and did not offer any assistance. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and current mileages were 76,043.

- Mannford, OK, USA

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