pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
93,762 miles
Total Complaints:
54 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (25 reports)
  2. replace engine (14 reports)
  3. never ever buy a toyota corolla (11 reports)
  4. dealer honoring warranty (2 reports)
  5. use thicker oil (2 reports)
2002 Toyota Corolla engine problems

engine problem

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2002 Toyota Corolla:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

2002 Toyota Corolla Owner Comments (Page 3 of 3)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #14

May 202008

Corolla CE

  • Automatic transmission
  • 51,000 miles


I had a 2002 Toyota Corolla that I purchased brand new in 2001. In may of this year, the engine light came on. Long story short, Toyota of Wesley Chapel told me there was a known sludge problem. Since they had all my service records, they agree to replace the engine as if I had an extended warranty. I paid a $500 deductible, spark plugs and the rental of a vehicle. 63 miles after getting my vehicle back, the transmission went. Toyota said someone had to be sabatoging my vehicle because this had never happened before. Long story short, I traded the vehicle in,which I lost money on due to a bad transmission. I was later told by my service adviser that when they road tested the used transmission they replaced it with, it failed as well. Today August 29,2008, I spoke with the service manager, Jason and he pretty much called me a liar as there was no such sludge problem on my year/make of vehicle and said I must have looked it up on the internet. The service adviser who and service manager who originally told me about the problem are no longer with the company. Toyota has now lost a customer.

- , Wesley Chapel, FL, USA

problem #13

Feb 012008

Corolla S

  • Manual transmission
  • 80,000 miles

Toyota has settled a lawsuit w/ other models having the same problem (oil low after about 1500 miles, sludge buildup). Dealership mechanic very testy when I mentioned sludge issue saying that my year and model not having the same problems as vehicles in law suit. How do all the magazines and writers still rave about Toyota and the models that fall into the lawsuit? How does Consumer Reports give all the models an outstanding rating with no engine mechanical problems? From the problems I've read about my model and year I know I'm not the only one, nor is this an isolated few cars. I'll nurse my car until it dies, then never, will I ever buy another Toyota. It's not just the problem that's wrong with the car, it's the arrogance and flat out lying by Toyota that there is an issue with their cars. I will tell everyone that I know who's looking for a car not to buy Toyota and why, maybe I can at least stop one purchase. Now to find another car, who do you consult when all the ratings are misleading to say the least. P.S. Scion is a division of Toyota.

- , Milford, PA, USA

problem #12

Sep 252003

Corolla S 1.8L I4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 45,000 miles

I took my car to a Toyota dealer because it was using oil. They told me they would have to make me drive it so they could check the level of consumption (apparently it is supposed to use oil). I brought it back a week later with 1 qt less oil. They tried to tell me this is normal. I decided to call Toyota. They told me to take the dealers advice. I called the dealer (Tansky Toyota, Columbus, Ohio), and told them I wanted my car fixed. By this point, the rod bearings were failing. They started telling me it was obviously my fault, and the warranty would not cover it. I threatened to hire an attorney, and then they told me that tey would tear down the engine, and diagnose the problem, but if they determined it was my fault, they would charge me $1500 diagnostic fee. I decided just to fix it myself. $350.00 plus 3 weeks without a car later, and it was fixed.

- , Hilliard, OH, USA

problem #11

Mar 092006

Corolla LX 4 Cilider

  • Automatic transmission
  • 65,000 miles


I bought my Toyota 2002 Corolla in 2001 I thought I was buying a car that will last a long time. "wrong" This is the biggest pic of junk that I have ever bought. Just after 65,000 miles I Noticed I was burning maybe a extra quart of oil between oil changes. Appox. 70,000 it was two quarts of oil. Now at near 80,000 I have to put a quart in every 200 miles. The dealer told me that it was my falt because I did not get My spark plugs replaced every 30 thousand miles??????? "Labadie Toyota in bay city Michigan" However there after research I did find this Toyota continues: "To make sure that customers have absolute confidence in their vehicles, this program will cover repair costs and incidental expenses for which a customer has paid or could incur as a result of damage due to oil gelling for a period of eight years from the date of first sale or lease without a mileage limitation. In addition to the costs of repairs, reasonable incidental expenses, such as car rental, and other out-of-pocket expenses will be covered. THIS HAS YET BEEN CONFIRMED so i do not know if they are true to there word. 1-888-802-9436 is a number you can call if you have this problem "this is a number to Toyota for this problem

- , Bay City, MI, USA

problem #10

Dec 072007

Corolla CE 1.8L

  • Manual transmission
  • 90,099 miles

I leased then bought back my Corolla thinking I was getting a good quality car.


I have never felt so cheated in my life.

Thirty thousand dollars later I realized I bought a lemon.

I would never have thought a Toyota could be a lemon!

- , Montreal, Quebec, Canada

problem #9

Jul 052006

Corolla 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 85,000 miles

The Toyota we bought started using excessive amounts of oil between regular oil changes. I couldn't find a leak. Not long after this, I started to hear a 'knock' in the engine that went away after it warmed up. From past experience I knew what the problem was, cracked piston. It's really bad now, to the point that I don't know how long the engine will hold together.

What causes this is the gearing in the transaxle. At around 40-45 mph, the engine is under it's power band and is 'lugging' due to the choice of final (overdrive) gearing in the car. The overdrive should not kick in at such low speeds.

Toyota should own up and replace these engines with ones that include forged pistons. That would be a simple fix for them without changing the gears in the transaxle. They should also fix the overdrive so that it doesn't kick in until proper hiway speeds are met.

I will never own another Toyota ever again.

- , Independence, MO, USA

problem #8

Apr 182007

(reported on)

Corolla 1.8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 77,416 miles


The engine has started to knock. They say it might need $1000 or more to fix not sure. Also at last service the engine was down a liter of oil. This has them worried. So we are checking the oil at every fill up for the next 1000 km then we will determine a plan of action. I am worried it might be more than we think and very expensive in the end. They say ok to drive for now. The knock goes away a bit when the engine warms up.

- , Cornwall, Ontario, Canada

problem #7

Nov 232006

Corolla S 1.8L

  • Manual transmission
  • 86,000 miles

I had purchased a used 2002 Toyota Corolla S with about 70000 miles. After about a week I noticed the rear bumper turning black. I brought it to the dealer and they told me i needed to replace the motor. I did. Now 1 YEAR LATER......my motor blew again. WHY???????? NO OIL!!!!!!!!!! Unfortunately, I do my own oil changes and have no receipts as I get my parts for free. So now I have to pay for another motor to be put in. I AM PISSED!!!!!!!!!!!!!

- , Monroe Twp., NJ, USA

problem #6

Oct 072007

(reported on)

Corolla 1.8L V4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 73,000 miles

This 2002 Corolla CE was purchased 2004 from a dealer still under warranty. It had mileage somewhat lower than average and no issues. We have had nothing other than tire problems and have done regular lube and oil changes. In August after a recent oil change, we noted after a trip that the oil was slightly down. It was taken about 150 miles and had lost 1 quart of oil. With no previous problems, we thought that the oil cap had not been secured properly. While waiting for an appointment to recheck the car, we put in a quart of oil and after another 150 mile trip it was again down a quart. This past week we took it to our long known and trusted mechanic who said it is not leaking but burning oil. We were told that this has been a problem that they are seeing in 2002 Corollas and that another car repair person had told him the same and they have gone from loving them to avoiding recommending them. I still owe on this car and have the choice of shellng out at least $3,000 or getting another car, when I hoped to get at least another 2 years before thinking about that. I would like Toyota to acknowledge the issue and make good on repairs on a car that should go a lot more miles. As it stands right now, I'm soured on a car I once thought was terrfic (and research until now backed up).

- , West Hatfield, MA, USA

problem #5

Aug 012007

(reported on)


  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles

I wanted a Toyota Corolla because I thought they were dependable. After only 2 years of having this car I've had to put in 2-3 liters of oil in a week and now my 4th cylinder has given out on me and it is worth nothing. I will never set foot in Toyota ever again and I am very sad to say that I gave such an awful company $12000.

- , Sparta, NJ, USA

problem #4

Jul 112007

(reported on)

Corolla CE

  • Automatic transmission
  • 64,000 miles


I too have had problems with my car using excessive oil very early on but didn't keep track of it quite as well as some of the others who have posted. I have kept up with maintenance (though have only been able to produce 7 oil change receipts so far). I reported the oil consumption problem when i had my oil changed a few different times and then to Rivergate Toyota in Madison TN when i had my 60,000 mile check up. They couldn't find a problem and didn't try until i said it was still under extended warranty, couldn't they do something? They put dye in the oil to track the leak when i got my oil changed next. Flash 3,000 miles later, I brought the car back in they reported not being able to find a leak and couldn't determine what was wrong but they found a leak in my transmission which i fixed. The car proceeded to burn up all of the oil in a 700 mile car ride over memorial day weekend. This time however, the engine light came on. Bringing it back to the dealer, they found engine sludge and that is a specific exclusion evidently on the extended warranty. So, they said regardless of whether or not their ignoring of the oil consumption problem was a cause of the engine sludge, they do not fix engine sludge. So, i have a 5 1/2 year old car, with 64,000 miles on it and a $3,000 - $6,000 fix required. This is really bad for Toyota. They need to acknowledge the engine sludge problems that their corolla's have, not just the cars that had the recall for engine sludge.

- , Nashville, TN, USA

problem #3

Jul 212006

(reported on)

Corolla LE

  • 38,540 miles

Oil changes done every 3K miles... engine knocks around this time (almost a cue). Dipstick shows "zero" oil! Dealer continues to tell me it is normal for car to require oil at 2K miles! I have changed PCV valve and checked vacuum--all checks good. No noticeable blue smoke out of exhaust to indicate burning oil. Where is the oil going, and more specifically, why is Toyota continuing to deny a problem with the 1.8L engines from this year group?

- , Hampton, VA, USA

problem #2

Aug 242005

(reported on)

Corolla T Spirit

  • 26,800 miles

I purchsed the Corolla, new, in March 2002 and have had it serviced annually in April. My wife was driving the car in February this year and noticed the oli light come on, whilst going round corners. I checked the oil level and to my horror, noticed that there was virtually no oil left in the engine. The car had done approx 6500 miles since the last service, in April 2004. I had to fill the engine with 3.5 litres of oil !! I complained to the local dealership and was told to fill it up and that this wasn't outside the oil usage limits. I had it serviced by a different dealership, a month later. In June, approx 2000 miles later, I happened to check the oil level again and once again, it was way down- I had to fill it again with 2 litres of oil. I checked for leaks and couldn't see any anywhere. Took the car into local dealership, who did checks and advised this wasn't unusual, but bring it back in 1000 miles. Due in tomorrow, but again the oil level is down. The car manual actually states that maximum oil consumption is 800 miles per litre, which I find astonishing. This oil loss is totally unacceptable.

- , Middlewich, Cheshire, UK

problem #1

Aug 092002

(reported on)

Corolla S

  • 15,000 miles

Car was taken to dealership because of engine knocking. Dealer found no oil in engine. Dealer found no leaks. Oil light did NOT come on, nor did check engine light. We put 5 quarts of oil in the car at the last oil change which was 3500 miles ago. We had no reason to check the oil on a new car with only 15,000 miles on it. Dealer will not honor warranty, says it was our fault for not putting oil in car and it will cost $4 - 5 thousand to fix it. We want to find out if anyone else has experienced excessive oil usage in this model car.

- , Vista, CA, USA

Not what you are looking for?