really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
70,788 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.

2006 Toyota RAV4 engine problems

engine problem

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2006 Toyota RAV4 Owner Comments (Page 3 of 4)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #23

Sep 182012

RAV4 6-cyl

  • 38,000 miles


When backing the car out and turning the steering, there is a clunking noise that occurs. It mostly occurs from a cold start. The car started making a popping sound. It was coming from underneath that car and made the exhaust sound really loud. Shortly after, the car seems to be driving very clunky and does not drive as well as usual. The car vibrates and drives very slowly. It sounded like it dropped a cylinder. The engine sounds very clunky. This has happened many times. Ignition coils were replaced several times.

- Gaithersburg, MD, USA

problem #22

Dec 042013

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 90,000 miles
Have to keep adding a quart of oil every other week or so.im checking it all the time! bought it new from dealer! my mechanic said either valves or pistons. Common problem with this model. I'm very upset. Change my oil every 3 thousand miles. I take very good care of my car. Went on line and others are having the same issues. Its costly to fix and Toyota should honor andfix this defect! my first Toyota and probably my last. I'll kept adding oil and see what happens.

- Scituate , MA, USA

problem #21

Dec 222010

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 44,169 miles
12/22/2010 @ 44,169 miles the steering knocked when taking tight turns. The intermediate steering shaft was replaced. 9/16/2011 @ 50,131 miles the alternator bearings gave way and the water pump was seeping fluid. The alternator and water pump were replaced. 12/16/13 @ 63,336 miles the engine failed. The check engine light, vehicle stability light and 4WD lights came on and the dealer service department indicated that the head gasket had failed, the engine was leaking coolant and the SUV needed a new engine.

- Glen Allen, VA, USA

problem #20

Oct 032013


  • miles


Just recently purchased a used 2006 Toyota Rav4...because I've owned two previous to this one and simply appreciate them... however....I've only owned this one since may of 2013 from a reputable dealership and to much surprise I am already experiencing technical difficulties. At about 1.5K miles after an oil change, my oil light comes on...checked the oil and it was low to the point where I had to add an additional quart on the 1st occasion and 2 quarts on the 2nd occasion...may I add that there is no leak. Who is going to hold Toyota accountable? I need help and answers.

- Springfield, OH, USA

problem #19

Jul 312013


  • 81,542 miles
I have always brought in my Toyota for regular maintenance to the dealer every 5,000 miles. In July of this year, the oil warning light began to light every time I hit the brakes. My dealer performed an oil consumption check. By November I was advised to have the engine reconstructed and repair the rings and pistons, because the engine was leaking excessive oil. I also had to replace the brakes. The repairs cost over $3500 and took over a week to complete. I recently learned that this model Toyota has a record of stuck oil rings causing excessive oil consumption which leads to engine failure. I feel that this should be a recall item. Engine failure due to loss of oil can cause the driver to lose control of the vehicle. This is a serious safety issue. I would like to be reimbursed for this manufacturer's defect that Toyota is fully aware of.

- Wilmington, DE, USA

problem #18

Aug 222013


  • 135,000 miles
I own a 2006 Rav4. Bought it new and have had every oil change and recommended engine service done since that time done at the dealership. A few months ago, I took it in to have my fluids checked before a road trip, and was told that the dipstick showed that I had absolutely no oil! it was almost impossible as I had just had an oil change about 3 weeks prior. I immediately took the car to the dealer and they added some oil and said they would "monitor the oil consumption." I thought maybe a careless mechanic failed to properly fill the reservoir. However, since then, I have had to go back every 1000 miles so they could check the dipstick and add oil, but each time was told that they will continue the monitoring. However, about 2 weeks ago, they called me and told me they had some information for me. I was told that to fix the problem I really need a new engine, as the oil is being used internally by the engine due to a piston assembly design problem per the tsb. I asked if Toyota was going to fix the problem for me at its cost, and they told me that there is no recall because it is not a safety issue. This is an unacceptable answer as this is not a "normal wear and tear" issue, it's a design defect issue. As such, Toyota should step up and fix the problems that are obviously being experienced by ( judging from the various blogs I've been viewing) lots of Toyota owners who have the same problem. The only option the dealer gave me was that I can have the piston repair work done and have the small block replaced for $3172. Like I said, I felt Toyota should pay for this, not me, as Toyota, not I, caused the problem.

- Port Angeles, WA, USA

problem #17

May 152013


  • 57,000 miles


Engine oil light comes on when going around turn, but goes off. I checked the oil and the dipstick was completely dry. I had to add 3 quarts of oil. The same thing happened the on 11/16/2013 and I had to add 3 quarts. I have seen numerous complaints on this issue on the internet.

- Coraopolis, PA, USA

problem #16

Apr 012013

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 165,000 miles
The vehicle is consuming oil at an alarmingly high rate. The oil level indicator does not come on. It flashes on hard braking. However by this point the oil level is dangerously low. In my vehicle it has been less than 1 qt.

- Andover, MA, USA

problem #15

Nov 172010

RAV4 4WD 4-cyl

  • 75,000 miles
Since this date the car has been burning excessive oil. Burning about a quart every 800 miles. I seen numerous postings of the same problem. Please advise.

- Franklin Square, NY, USA

problem #14

Jun 112013

RAV4 4-cyl

  • miles
When I took my vehicle to get an oil change, the technician told me there was nothing showing on the dip stick. Although a low-oil light never appeared to let me know that the oil was low, the oil was very low. I started checking my oil level often and noticed that I needed to add oil between oil changes. I can also smell burning oil when I accelerate either to get on a highway ramp or to go up a hill. A dealership subsequently told me that the rings on the engine block were worn and that I needed a new engine that would cost approximately $8,500. Now I drive around with a case of oil in my back seat. From what I've read on the internet, this is not an isolated case.

- Basking Ridge, NJ, USA

problem #13

Aug 272013

RAV4 6-cyl

  • 85,000 miles


This is my story: My wife, yorkie, and I went to pick up my son at preschool early this afternoon in weston, fl when all of the sudden we hear a brief whine noise followed by the check engine and oil lights on the panel; the engine shut itself off. I was able to pull to the side of the road but the car was difficult to drive. I cranked the engine on again and was able to drive for another 100 yards. The same whine noise followed by the same lights and engine shut off. Afterwards, the engine would turn on and it immediately would shut off; not a chance to engage to drive and move an inch. I looked at the engine compartment and there was nothing unusual; the oil level was fine (the car has never had a leak and has been properly maintained), no funny smells, etc. By this time we were sweating and getting concerned. I thought it could be that the A/C could be part of the problem since it adds load to the engine serpentine belt; I turned off the A/C by depressing the A/C button on car's dash and the engine stayed on. I was able to drive the car and pick up my son thankfully. I was ready to send my wife on a cab to get him. My questions to you guys are the following: Why would Toyota design the engine to shut itself off in a situation when something in the A/C fails? if my wife would have been in the highway with my son and had the engine shut off, she would have completely freaked out and god forbid in an accident. All I can think of is that Toyota implemented a mechanism to kill the engine if the load in the serpentine belt is excessive. Yes, good to prevent engine damage, but I value my family's and my life more. The engine should not shut off... that is why you have warning lights and other safety mechanisms.

- Pembroke Pines, FL, USA

problem #12

Jul 032013

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 115,000 miles
The engine for my 2006 Toyota is burning oil rapidly. I have about 115,000 miles and was hoping that this car would at least last me another 5 years. The dealership is telling me that my engine needs an engine overhaul which will cost about $3,000. I make sure to take care of my car and bring it for an oil change when it's due.

- Allenwood, NJ, USA

problem #11

Feb 022012

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 85,000 miles
The vehicle loses 1-2 quarts of oil over 30-60 day period or 1500-2000 miles. No signs of leaks, dripping or other sources of loss are visible. In checking Toyota Rav4 owner forums, it seems this condition is prevalent among many and spans several model years. The condition has been occurring for several years now, but we thought it was just us and seemed to be a slower loss. Now the loss is much faster. I am concerned that if people wait to check oil until next oil change, they may damage their engines.

- San Ramon, CA, USA

problem #10

Nov 132012

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 73,050 miles
Oil pressure warning lit up at approximately 73,050 miles. Diagnosis is that the oil consumption is faster than normal. Servicer topped off oil and returned to servicer after driving $1200 miles. I was told everything is fine. Then it happened again at approximately 81,950 miles. Servicer again tops off with oil and returned after driving another $1200 miles. This time the servicer stated that they need to tear the car apart the before pinpointing the exact problem. Approximate cost to do this is maybe $3,000. Extended warranty expired at $75,000 miles.

- Philadelphia, PA, USA

problem #9

Oct 132012


  • 91,738 miles
My truck has had 4 incidents of dangerously low oil levels. Toyota has service bulletins out regarding oil consumption and my model of the 2006 Toyota Rav4 regarding faulty pistons and rings. I have brought my truck to Toyota 4 times for this issue and Toyota refuses to fix the problem under my warranty stating that I am out of warranty even though my first complaint was 10/13/13 and my warranty expired Jan 2013 T-sb-0094-11 is the Toyota service bulletin.

- New Windsor , NY, USA

problem #8

Feb 202013

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 97,000 miles
The engine oil light would blink intermittently especially when applying brakes. Upon inspection of oil dipstick, there is no sign of any oil on the dipstick. Brought to a mechanic and had the oil changed (with synthetic mobil 1 as recommended by Toyota). Mechanic noticed very little oil drained. After refilling with new oil, test drove the car and confirmed the dipstick showing oil at maximum level. Around 2000 miles later, inspection of oil dipstick revealed almost no oil again. There were no leaks which mechanic confirmed as the underside was clean as a whistle. Mechanic believes piston problems which will be very expensive to replace.

- Saint Johns, FL, USA

problem #7

May 062013

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 133,000 miles
Driving car and the oil light failed to indicate oil was very low. Heard a knocking noise so I checked the oil and discovered the oil was low although oil had just been added a few days earlier. I was not sure if the vechicle was fit to drive, so for safety reasons I had the car towed to my mechanic. The mechanic checked out the car and said the engine was damaged due to the lack of oil and constant burning of oil due to a defect in the Toyota rav 4 engine/oil system which causes the oil to combuse and burn off preventing the oil indicator light to alert the driver to add oil. This defect causes engines to seize. At this time I called Toyota of North America (1800 331-4331) directly to report this issue. I was told that as of today no recall or reimbursement is being issued but if everyone with this problem call Toyota of North America directly to report their problem then an investigation will be issued. So please call today so we may all be reimbursed from Toyota for this issue that they are well aware of and are choosing to do nothing for the consumers. They will then give you a case # that they tell you to keep just in case a recall is activated.

- Manalapan, NJ, USA

problem #6

Feb 262013

RAV4 6-cyl

  • 37,658 miles
Car at about 37,000 miles. Only drive to store and drop kids off to school. Car parked for 10 minutes while at store shopping. Came back, started the engine. The engine light, vsc and 4WD lights all lighted up. When to local Toyota dealer, dealer said can't service it at this time need to make appointment. Dealer stated based on the lights, this might be the ignition coil.. it's known to have problem. Estimated cost to fix about $1500. But we need to computerized the codes..

- Springfield, PA, USA

problem #5

Dec 222012

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 92,789 miles
The check engine oil light began flickering under hard braking. Light never was on under normal idle or travel. Upon checking oil on dipstick - no oil registered on dipstick. I immediately proceeded to the change oil and the oil pan only contained approximately 1.2 quarts or 75% less than the 4.5 quarts specified. Upon web research it appears Rav4 has problems with excessive oil consumption. Registered a complaint with Toyota usa as I know have concerns damage was done to engine as warning light should have come on sooner.

- Sandy Hook, CT, USA

problem #4

Jul 062012

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 69,300 miles
2006 Toyota Rav4, consumer stated within 3 1/2 months after oil, total oil leakage occurred. The pistons, rings and gasket had to be replaced. On Feb 2, 2012 the consumer had an oil changed. On June 1, 2012 the oil warning light illuminated and the dipstick was completely dry. The consumer believed the oil leak was over a period of time and not just suddenly within 3 1/2 months. The technicians who performed the oil changed every 3-4 months should have noticed the shortage of oil, especially on Feb 2, 2012. Also, the steering wheel shaft assembly was replaced.

- Tampa, FL, USA

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