Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

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hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
56,130 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 RAV4 engine problems

engine problem

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2005 Toyota RAV4 Owner Comments

problem #5

Mar 312012


  • 118,000 miles


First tire indicator light came on. Checked pressure in all tires. Tires were at correct amount. Went to reset light which did not work. SUV was on an incline (driveway). Let car sit for an hour on flat surface. Started Rav4.the tire indicator light came on plus ABS and vsc trac lights. Consulted owners manual which stated to take to Toyota. No other brake warning lights came on. Was 1/2 mile from dealer when smoke started coming into passenger cabin. Smoke/fire was coming from the engine and under Rav4. Smoke was a bluish grey. Pulled off the major road into an abandoned business driveway. Turned rav off and ran. Passerby called 911. Fire trucks/police arrived. Rav was a total loss. Called Toyota usa to report fire. They are saying that it was not mechanical or electrical. But that the fire originated in the engine compartment. Cause of fire was undetermined and there was no evidence of any sort of defect or malfunction with any of the electrical or mechanical systems found. Rav went to dealer for all required service and never had and major problems. If it was not electrical then what caused my lights to come on. Thee vsc trac light had never come on since I owned the car. I have owned Toyota since 1973 and never had anything like this happen. The Rav4 was my 5th Toyota.

- Audubon, NJ, USA

problem #4

Feb 182012


  • 68,000 miles
I have a 2005 4 cylinder Toyota Rav4 with about 68,000 miles. It starting making a gurgling noise in the dashboard area, and eventually left 2 puddles of anti-freeze on my garage floor. I immediately took it to the Toyota dealer for repair. After checking the Rav4 out, the repair manager phoned to tell me the engine was indeed leaking coolant around the engine head because the engine bolts had stripped. I asked how the head bolts got stripped and he replied, "wear and tear and the repair would be around $3000 if the head bolt holes could be repaired; otherwise, I would need a new engine." The Rav4 has been well maintained, so this is not "wear and tear", but rather a manufacturing defect. After talking with the mechanic doing the repairs, he said they see many of these 4 cylinder engines with this problem -- mostly on the Camry, since it is basically a Camry engine. I've done some research on the internet and found this is becoming quite a common problem. Here a few websites with very unhappy Toyota owners: (;;; apparently, Toyota has not done a safety recall for this problem and does not even cover the cost of the repair, even though they do have a written procedure the mechanics use to perform the repair.

- Riverside, CA, USA

problem #3

Jan 302012


  • 79,650 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Toyota Rav4. The contact stated the that the vehicle was constantly losing anti-freeze and causing the vehicle to overheat. The contact took the vehicle to a local mechanic where the mechanic stated that the water pump malfunctioned and needed to be repaired. The contact did not call the manufacturer and the vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 79,650.

- Berkeley Heights, NJ, USA

problem #2

Jan 232010


  • 15,000 miles
I have a Toyota 2005 rav 4 - 6 cyl. I am experiencing a problem not associated with the Toyota recalls, according to Toyota. Twice while the vehicle was in drive and I have my foot on the brake, and the vehicle is stopped, after the vehicle idles down from moving, the engine revs up again. The gas pedal was not touched and the floor mat is not in the way. The engine revving up is scary enough that someone outside of my car thought I was spinning my wheels in the snow and ice, and I was not moving. I took it in to a dealer and they hooked it up to their computer and found no problem. Of course when they drove it, they could not replicate the problem. They recommended that if it happens again that I immediately have it towed back to the dealer.

- Crystal, MN, USA

problem #1

Jan 102009


  • miles
Re: 2005 Toyota Rav4 unintended acceleration it is very difficult to control acceleration from a stop while driving my Rav4 in stop and go traffic. This has been true since I purchased the car with about 40,000 miles on it. I have removed the floormat with no change. I have been told by 2 Toyota dealerships (one had the car for evaluation for a day. I was charged an evaluation fee and for a rental car) that this is normal. This is a potentially dangerous condition and clearly a safety hazard. I hold a commercial drivers license and have had many years of experience driving a wide variety of vehicles and have never encountered this problem. It is only a matter of time before the car hits something. Toyota must address this issue. Until this problem is remedied there is the real risk of something or someone being damaged or hurt (or worse).

- Columbia, SC, USA

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