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pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
62,563 miles
Total Complaints:
25 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replace water pump (21 reports)
  2. car now needs a new engine! (3 reports)
  3. not sure (1 reports)
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2009 Toyota Corolla cooling system problems

cooling system problem

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2009 Toyota Corolla Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #25

Feb 072015

Corolla LE

  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,000 miles


click to see larger images

water pump failure water pump failure water pump failure

The charging system light came on while we were driving my car to go pick up my husband’s. Once we reached the lot where his car was, he tried turning the car off and restarting it to see what happened. It clicked a few times, then started. We got in our cars to drive home before I had any issues, but as I backed out of the spot I noticed the power steering was gone. He tried turning off and restarting the car again, but this time it wouldn’t start. We heard a soft dripping noise from the engine and then antifreeze started pouring out all over the ground. Before leaving the car in the lot for the night, the entire antifreeze tank had emptied out onto the ground. After my insurance towed it the next day we found out the water pump had become detached and the serpentine belt had begun to fall off (it completely fell off when the tow truck dropped it in my garage). Since the serpentine belt fell off it stopped charging the alternator and battery which caused the battery to die. The antifreeze came out from the broken water pump itself. My brother in law diagnosed the problem and fixed it with after-market parts.

- , Manassas, VA, USA

problem #24

Mar 012015

Corolla S 1.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,000 miles

Just a little background: I purchased my 2009 Corolla S in March 2010 as a certified used with 7000 miles. Everything was fine until i had to have my water pump replaced at 69,000 miles. I lost power steering and almost crashed. The water pump failed, they said it was partially seizing. They also replaced the serpentine belt as they said it had coolant on it and would slip. 1 month later at 70122 miles they had to tighten the serpentine belt because now the belt was screeching upon start for 1-2 minutes. 82,210 miles I had to have the serpentine belt replaced again, It was glazed over from it slipping so badly. 95380 miles the belt was screeching again, they re-tightened. 99827 miles I had to have the water pump REPLACED AGAIN!!! More screeching and an ominous whirring noise made me drive her to Toyota. Oh, and the serpentine belt was replaced again because this time the pump not only failed, it completely seized and it cut grooves into the belt! So now at 120,355.... my water pump is failing again. The screeching is back, the whirring noise, now when I start her she makes this horrendous grinding noise. But Toyota insists its not out of the norm for a water pump to fail. 3 failed water pumps in 50,000 miles, but they don't see a problem with that.

- , Southbury, CT, USA

problem #23

Sep 292014

Corolla LE Vvt1

  • Automatic transmission
  • 111,900 miles

My 09 Toyota corolla's water pump is busted and I thought all along that corolla are supposed to be the best????? My husbands GMC Sierra is an 02 and never have to change his water pump. I would like Toyota to fix it for free.

- , Brownsburg, IN, USA

problem #22

Dec 112014

Corolla LE 1.8L V4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 45,000 miles


This really annoying issue, with only 45,000 miles on the car the water pump shouldn't just worn out by itself!

- , Lansing, Michigan, USA

problem #21

Nov 172014

Corolla XLE 1.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 74,295 miles

click to see larger images

water pump failure

Took my wife's 2009 Corolla XLE (1.8 engine / 74,295 miles) in for routine oil change and to check for noisy (loud grinding, whirring) engine sound on cold mornings. I mentioned to the Service Asst. Mgr. P that the sound seems to lessen with a warmer engine. Without looking at the vehicle, the young Service Asst. Mgr (P) stated that it was common with this vehicle and others also. He said this without even looking at my vehicle! I asked if it would do any damage to the engine if my wife continues to drive it and he said, "no and this was common with many vehicles" I drove home and the next couple of days, I noticed that the sound was getting louder.

So, I researched it online and found a Youtube video (Amir) that had the same problem. In his video, the sound his Corolla made was "exactly" like my wife's car. Some Corollas will have a rattle or knocking sound on cold starts which usually only last a brief second or two. This is not the same sound when it is the water pump. Then, I chatted with a Toyota Tech (online) and he said I could check the pump myself by releasing tension on belt and see if the pump pulley was loose, binding or leaking. He said it should turn fairly free and smooth. I did this and found the pulley to be stuck and hard to rotate. I dropped the car off that night so the Toyota Dealership could listen to the cold start up noise themselves. I also had two recalls that I was never made aware of. So, I wrote that I wanted these recalls fixed also and to check the noise.

Mgr. P calls back and says they got the recalls fixed and their Tech said the noise was the Cam Shaft Timing Gear Assembly! Mgr P stated it would cost $494.29 plus tax to have it repaired. After watching the video and examining the pump myself, I replied "No thanks, just replace the water pump". After mentioning all the problems with water pumps and recalls to him, he replies "You really need to stop reading stuff on the internet about this". I thought to myself, if it wasn't for researching the internet, I would have never found out about the defective water pumps or about the recalls from Toyota! When Mgr. P calls to tell me my wife’s car was ready, I ask about the old water pump condition. He replied “Well it is a little tight, but normal for 74,000 miles” When I got home, I looked at the pump and could barely turn it by hand and when it did turn, it wobbled.

So, I return to the dealership and told the Service Manager the whole story. Then showed him the water pump and told him the sound the car made was gone. I also had my car checked by another mechanic and he said there was absolutely nothing wrong with the Cam Shaft Timing Gear assembly. The Service manager apologized for Mgr. P’s unprofessional behavior. I hope others may learn from this incident. I also hope Mgr. P will learn how to be a better Service Manager. This will be my last Toyota I purchase!

- , Lawrence, KS, USA

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problem #20

Sep 302014


  • Automatic transmission
  • 59,265 miles

The leaking water pump was found while the car was in for another problem (bad alternator) and had it taken care of at the same time. It was still under warranty...however both these problems seem to be surprising in a car with under 60k miles....and both parts seem to be common problems in this yr/model.

- , Fort Collins, CO, USA

problem #19

Sep 012014

Corolla LE 1.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 151,000 miles


It had made noise 2 weeks prior to breaking.

Sounded like an alternator bearing.

MY BAD....It was the water pump.


Get it fixed before it makes a fool of you.

- , Topeka, KS, USA

problem #18

Sep 162014

Corolla LX 1.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 26,719 miles


- , Brampton, Ontario, canada

problem #17

Jul 262014

Corolla 1.6L

  • Manual transmission
  • 39,800 miles

Lights showed up on the dash board to check VSC system, and struggling to drive out of motor way traffic (for about 3 - 5 minutes), when just reaching hard shoulder, engine cut. Car was rescued to Toyota depot in Basingstoke and they asked for £57 pounds for diagnosis with result of water pump failure. Asked for £168 to do further diagnostics with results that compression test failed and thus engine can only be brought down for diagnostics at cost of £648 or a new engine be bought between £4000 to £5000.

Googled and wrote to Toyota with reply that I will be referred to customer relation department, and they will contact within 72 hours. Contacted depot from which car was bought, and they could do full diagnostics for £57 and repair of engine and contact Toyota and explain the situation to them to assist as the car was not under warranty. Given the cost of only rescuing the car to them without the least idea of what the outcome would be (especially given that the Basingstoke depot said they do not have the least idea of what might be wrong with the engine unless they bring it down - after payment of £648!)

Meanwhile no contact from Toyota customer relation from 1st August to 7th August, and when I called, they say they can't say anything as the car was not with them. That the depot with the car should establish whether water pump failure was wear and tear or product fault. And depot says fault was internal and they cannot say. This is a less than 4 years old car with less than 40000miles on the clock serviced yearly and MOT by Toyota.

- , Basingstoke, Hampshire, UK

problem #16

Jun 282014

Corolla LE 1.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 46,912 miles

Water pump leak was discovered during oil change and tire rotation at Evans tires. Coolant level was low, coolant sprayed under hood, water pump cover was missing (fell off during trip?), engine check light was NOT illuminated. Maintenance light was on but that comes on at oil change intervals.

Considering the previous entries, I got off pretty light and consider this episode a near miss. I purchased the car, private party, with 7,000 miles on it and was expecting about 100k without repairs, a car I could grow old with...but, alas another disappointment.

I've recently received an interim notice from Toyota regarding a air bag non-deployment issue. I suppose this is a pre-recall notice while they work on a solution.

Frank Toyota has been mailing me offers for up to $10K for my car. I'm strongly considering getting rid this car and going with GM....whoops they have lots of recall issues too. Kia? Hyundai?

- , Chula Vista, CA, USA

problem #15

May 302014

Corolla LE 1.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 41,800 miles


Just bought a 2009 Corolla LE from a private seller, took it in for a Safety Inspection and they said Water Pump is failing and told me it was a problem and Toyota knows about it and won't do a thing. 6 months past 5 years and only 41,800 miles... really sad.

I called Toyota Customer Experience and they said Toyota had to do a service on it and provide to them that it was leaking so they can "investigate". So, $600 Toyota fix so they can "investigate" or $70 me fix and no "investigation.

Way to step up Toyota!!!

- , Spring Valley, OH, USA

problem #14

Jul 152013

Corolla LE 1.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 38,000 miles

A month after my warranty ran out and just days after my car was serviced at the Toyota dealership, I noticed a high pitched squeaking sound. Initially, I thought it might have been a belt but everything looked fine. My dad and a mechanic friend both thought it sounded like a failing alternator but there were no other symptoms. My brother replaced the alternator but the sound remained. Turns out the water pump is under the alternator, and my water pump had a bad bearing. My brother was able to replace the water pump fairly inexpensively and return the unneeded alternator but it was a pain.

- , Williamsport, PA, USA

problem #13

Mar 282014


  • Automatic transmission
  • 74,256 miles

Like many of the others here, I discovered my car had a problem when I had it in for a routine oil change. The tech warned me that if I don't get this fixed soon, it could do major damage to my engine. My water pump is not leaking yet, but apparently it is making a warning rattle.

- , Manhattan, KS, USA

problem #12

Aug 012012

Corolla CE

  • Automatic transmission
  • 67,471 miles

Dealer reported leaking shaft on water pump and suggested replacement, which was done. However I had to take the car back after it was replaced since the fan belt was riding on the outside rim of the pulley, after the replacement, either I believe it was incorrectly installed, or it somehow jumped out of the pulley. Hmmmm.

- , Kanata, ON, canada

problem #11

Oct 212013

Corolla LX 1.6L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,000 miles

My warranty (5 years or 60000 miles) is expired 10 days ago. I didn't pay attention to Toyota water pump failure news announced on November 12, 2012. If I did I could save this 600.00 expense. Call Toyota to mention this issues and they can't help on this issue even through it is a manufacturer defect on Toyota models. I think I was ripped off by Toyota. If you have the same problem as I had please complain to State and Federal levels so that they can pay attention to this issue. Thanks. Jack

- , San Jose, CA, USA

problem #10

May 152012

Corolla LS 1.8L

  • Manual transmission
  • 52,000 miles

I have had several issues with my Corolla and thankfully they were covered under my warranty or via recall, but the worse problem I've had thus far was my water pump seizing on my way home. I dropped it off to the repair shop and I am praying to GOD that the engine was not effected by this. I called the dealership and the power-train warranty folks and it is not covered. Now I have to come out of pocket and I have to take the next couple of days off until I get this problem fixed.

Toyota, Toyota, Toyota y'all knew there was a problem with these pumps going bad after a few years. You should seriously do a recall, reimburse us who already had to come out of pocket for this issue, and add it to the warranty. #Won'tBeBuyingAnotherToyota

- , Rochester, NY, USA

problem #9

May 312013

Corolla LS 1.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,408 miles

Check engine light and battery light came on at the same time. Attempted to drive the car into the dealership (about 15 miles) when the engine seized up. Car was within warranty mileage, but regular maintenance should have apparently caught the issue even though I had taken my car to Pep Boys for oil change service three weeks earlier, so the new engine was not covered under warranty. Also was told by various service/warranty members varying information on whether I should have heard something ahead of time that would have warned me there was a problem. I apparently should have seen coolant puddles on my driveway, which weren't there until this past weekend when I got the car back with the new engine which now leaks coolant and oil. Last Toyota I will buy.

- , Cincinnati, OH, USA

problem #8

Sep 162012

Corolla LE 1.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 82,000 miles

Water pump went while wife was driving vehicle out of state. Due to continued use on the highway, the excessive temperature warped the plastic on the radiator causing that to need replacement as well. Toyota quality has dropped off the shelf. Too many problems with this vehicle.

- , Laurel, MD, USA

problem #7

Mar 282013

Corolla LE 1.8L I4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 48,838 miles

I bought my 09 Corolla as a "certified used vehicle" a year ago. It currently has less and 50000 miles and started hearing an abrasive metal grinding on metal noise coming from the engine. I looked under the hood and a pinkish colored chemical which turned out to be coolant was sprayed on the hood and all of the pulley's with a bad water pump being the result. Toyota is supposed to be known for their quality but i am pretty uneasy with my experience so far. I have an appointment with the dealer today to find out if it is covered under warranty. Based on what i have found on toyota's website it should be covered under the powertrain warranty so i will have to wait and see.

- , Phoenix, AZ, USA

problem #6

Nov 152012

Corolla ES 1.8L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 25,000 miles

Mother's car. Gently used 3 and a hlf year old Corolla had loud whirring / grinding noise and we took it to dealer. They replaced the water pump. This was in November 2012 at 25,000 miles. Now in late December my mother noticed similar (not exact but similar) whirring noise. Dealer NOW is telling us it's the alternator. So a gently used Corolla is now going to need a second 500-800 dollar repair. Also have a 2007 Camry Hybrid that had water pump fail at about 60K and a 2007 Matrix that has also had mechanical / engine problems. Bottom line, last Toyota I buy.

- , Suffolk, VA, USA

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