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5.8

fairly significant
Typical Repair Cost:
$590
Average Mileage:
60,400 miles
Total Complaints:
37 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (18 reports)
  2. replace intermediate shaft (7 reports)
  3. replace steering shaft due to binding (7 reports)
  4. mechanic recommended replace rack and pinion (3 reports)
  5. steering box column replaced (1 reports)
  6. steering olumn sleeves were replaced (1 reports)
2006 Toyota RAV4 steering problems

steering problem

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2006 Toyota RAV4 Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #37

May 092016

RAV4 Sport 3.5L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 138,983 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

I test drove the car at Kerry Toyota in Florence, Ky. I didn't feel the clunking. I bought it. I'm driving and it's clunking and I was scared. I thought this car is unsafe to drive. Daniel S, the sales guy said Toyota makes sure the cars are safe. That's their only concern; it's a buy as is. I took it to Marshall Toyota in Dry Ridge, ky and they gave me an estimate for 512. I bought a genuine Toyota steering column on eBay and had a local mechanic install it. The part was 150 and the install was 80. I paid for it. It still does it, but not as bad. They scanned my dash lights and she said it's an evap problem with emissions. You don't live in California, so don't worry about it. Just this week, I got an oil change and I asked the service guy can they check the steering columns. He said they need to be aligned and balanced and there's a special tool. I guess this other mechanic didn't know that. I asked him how much and he said 300. I've had it with Toyota. They gouge the hell out of people on repairs. I bought the car May, 2016, and took it off the lot and so many miles later, the dash lit up with all the warning lights. I didn't think anything of it except what are those? This week, I'm talking to mechanic about misfires (5th cylinder). It dawned on me that Kerry mechanics turned them off. That's unscrupulous. The check engine light came on this week and the mechanic ran his scanner and he said the car needs an evap canister. He says there is no secondary market on it. It's a dealer part for 800. Kerry turned those lights off. I NEVER WOULD HAVE BOUGHT A CAR WITH DASH LIGHTS ON. who would??? That is so crooked. I loved Toyotas, but I won't ever buy another one after what Kerry did to me. Dirty dogs. I traded my 2004 Celica in for this. I traded in a reliable car for this. They are really kind of nasty too at Toyota. This service guy especially. I got screwed over. Turned the dash lights off because it needed that 800 part. The tire one came on also. Also vsc and the skidding tire one came on, everything but the check engine. They're a deceptive company. No more Toyota for me.

- Dee G., Williamstown, US

problem #36

May 062016

RAV4 Limited V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 149,000 miles

I have had my Rav4 Limited for years I Love my car but yesterday out of no where it started making this nasty clunk sound when I make turns or go to take off. It feels and sounds like it is under the car I'm not sure if it has something to do with a recall that I got something in the mail about.

Update from May 7, 2016: EVERYONE ON HERE WITH RAV4 COMPLAINTS HAS TO CALL 1-800-331-4331 THAT IS TO OPEN A FILE WITH TOYOTA AND THE MORE THEY GET THEY WILL INVESTIGATE AND THEN THAT IS WHEN THEY MAKE RECALLS .... THERE HAS NOT BEEN ENOUGH COMPLAINTS ABOUT CLICKING OR FRONT DRIVE SHAFTS ONLY THE REAR JUST CALL AND OPEN A FILE TAKES 5 MINS AND IT MAKES A DIFFFERENCE

- escappas, Bayviulle, NJ, USA

problem #35

Dec 092015

RAV4 2362

  • Automatic transmission
  • 37,282 miles

Am currently trying to inquire from the local dealer Toyotsu on how to get this resolved since it seems its a worldwide problem as confirmed from online searches.

- Eric K., Nairobi, Kenya

problem #34

Feb 182016

RAV4 2.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 58,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Just purchased this vehicle. I didn't notice the noise until after I got it home. It makes a clunking sound when turning. I did a search to try to figure out the problem and found several others having the same issue. I have not taken it to a mechanic yet, but I am adding my complaint in hopes that it will encourage Toyota to do a recall. Otherwise I am pleased with the vehicle for the 1 week I have owned it.

- hilltn, Lexington, TN, USA

problem #33

Jul 122013

RAV4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,000 miles

Lucky me I just got off the phone with Toyota and they thanked me for the call which provided them with more data. Does wonders for me and the rest of us . NOT! My Rav clunks the worst when your sitting at a stop light or sign and then you have to turn right or left. Also when you are braking to come to a stop there is a loud clunk underneath the dash board somewhere near the center. I told them I'm going to drive the thing until it breaks. I'm not spending the money others have spent here to repair the problem only to find out it didn't. My wife has a 95 Corolla with 325,000 miles on it and no issues. We bought this RAV new in 2006 because we had such good luck. Now she wants a Venza. NO WAY!!! I will never purchase another Toyota. If they can't stand behind what I feel is a safety issue then why would I want another one? I guess it is going to take a accident from somebody with this problem to get their attention and I hope they get their backside sued off. Its ridiculous. The RAV is a great vehicle otherwise but there are principles here. Look at all the posts regarding this complaint yet there is no customer support programs. Yet. I wouldn't look fr one anytime soon. I'll go to a manufacturer that cares about their products. That is if there is one. When this thing breaks it will be sitting on the side of the road. I'm just going to walk away from it.

- Robert S., Castle Rock, CO, USA

problem #32

Nov 232015

(reported on)

RAV4 2.4L 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 150,000 miles

Steering rack, I changed the steering rack one year ago. Now I have the same problem. I hearing rattling noise while I am driving in bumpy roads. I have done suspension work six months ago. I changed the tie rode, ball joint, savoy bar. Recently I check with my mechanic he showed me steering rack is shaking, vehicle needs a new rack and pinion, cost of $900. I showed this vehicle to another mechanic, he told me he can fix this problem, cost of $300. What is the real problem?

Update from Jul 26, 2016: Toyota given extended warrenty/rembursement to fix this problem,I went to Dealer(Autonation Toyota Glf freeway, Houston,TX), They don,t even check/diaganose the problem, I called the dealer he told me " you are not going to hear any sound/(quelling noise) when you drive faster/in freeway, I hope vehicle is goin to be ok to drive"

- Dennis T., Pearland, TX, US

problem #31

May 212014

RAV4 Limited

  • Automatic transmission
  • 68,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Again, the Toyota dealership in Williamsburg was kind enough to show me the TSB for the intermediate shaft and immediately told me it was out of warranty so they would not repair it under warranty. There's a TSB out for a know defect but because I'm a few thousand miles over their arbitrary limit it is suddenly my issue. Never did notice the clunk until they told me about it. I will not give them more money via replacement parts that shouldn't have to be replaced, I will live with it unless they fix it. In the meantime I don't think I'll buy a Toyota, ever.

- Saul P., Williamsburg, VA, USA

problem #30

Apr 012010

RAV4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 199,000 miles

I have had to take my 2006 Rav4 in to Cormier's Auto after the vehicles warranty was over. As I take left or right turns at low speeds there is a loud clunking noise. It has been this way for nearly 4 yrs. Cormier's has packed more grease in there which quieted it down for a short time but now its back. I can't wait to be rid of this vehicle... between the clunky steering noise and the excessive oil consumption - its my last Toyota (I have had 3 in the past).

- Sharon H., Frankford, ON, Canada

problem #29

Jun 262009

RAV4 Limited 3.2L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 125,517 miles

When driving over bumps, cracks,etc the steering wheel makes an awful clunking noise. It seems like the steering wheel could fall off. Toyota mechanics have reassured me that will not happen. Just found this site and see it is a very common complaint with 2006 RAVs. It has been 5 years and the noise is as bad as ever. I would love to know how to fix this problem. Definitely seems to be worthy of a recall by Toyota!!!

- Bev K., Hudson Bay, SK, canada

problem #28

Oct 012013

RAV4 Sport 3.5L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 91,000 miles

Just before my extended warranty ran out I asked the mechanics to take a listen to the steering. Mostly when I went of speed bumps at an angle did the steering make a "popping" or creaking sound. I showed him an internet forum where a number of people complained about similar issues. He thankfully replaced the whole rack and pinion steering. Since then it's been just fine.

- nedarb, Issaquah, WA, USA

problem #27

Feb 042013

RAV4 Limited 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 40,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Way back in 2010, under extended warranty, the dealer did replace the steering assembly. Obviously out of warranty now!

The dealer just fixed the rear suspension arm RECALL and it seemed to quiet down the noises. BUT....It's back just after less than 6 months. I bought new tires at the dealer and they installed them (same dealer I bought my car NEW at!). Once the tires were on the tire pressure sensor light started coming on. (The VSC and other lights have been coming on for no reason since day one, Stop turn off engine and restart takes care of it). I take her back to the dealer and they replace (at no cost) the tire pressure sensor on left right front wheel.

A week later I'm getting so much clanking and clunking noise when I turn the car either left or right.

It/s going back to the dealer tonight for them to look at it tomorrow again! At least the service adviser said there was a problem in many 2006 RAV4's with same reports of clunking. So it's most likely a steering issue, rack and pinion or assembly.

That's where I found this website and was relieved to see it's not just my RAV 4. Toyota darn well better issue a recall and fix this issue as I'm going to Ralph Nader and 7 on your side if I have to.

I will update on what the dealer adviser says tomorrow. If it's a minor cost I can deal with it as I now have 81,000 gentle and well cared for miles on her. This problem started way back in 2009 and 2010 with less than 40k miles on my car. K Reed San Jose ca

- kreedca, San Jose, CA, USA

problem #26

Apr 122008

RAV4 AWD 2.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 35,000 miles

HAD THIS REPLACED AS A COURTEOUSLY FROM BIG 2 TOYOTA IN CHANDLER, AZ BACK IN 2008. I CALLED TOYOTA MOTOR CORP IN 2012 WITH THE SAME LOOSE STEERING SHAFT PROBLEM AGAIN, THEY TOLD ME IT WAS MY PROBLEM AND NOT TOYOTA'S, THERE NEEDS TO BE A SAFETY RECALL ON THIS SHAFT.

- cpt, Sun Lakes, AZ, USA

problem #25

Jan 212010

RAV4 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 44,502 miles

In 2010 I complained to the Toyota dealership In Laurel, MD about a noise in the steering assembly (at 44,502 miles) The mechanic stated that the steering is working properly without abnormal noise. No problem found. The noise became more noticeable over the next two years. On 03/22/12 the mechanic informed me that he noticed a noise when turning the steering wheel. Cause: Lower intermittent (sic) steering shaft has excessive play due to worn out splines. Correction: Replace lower steering shaft ($359.--). I declined to have this repair completed since I'm waiting for a recall pertaining to this problem. I was not warned about any safety issues in this regard. I will not buy another Toyota product.

- Pete S., Severn, MD, USA

problem #24

Oct 012011

RAV4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,000 miles

IN READING ALL THE COMPLAINTS WITH THE COMPLAINTS ABOUT THE CLUNKING NOISE WITH THE STEERING AND THE SO CALLED FACT THAT TOYOTA STATES IT'S NO BIG DEAL MAKES ME ANGRY. I BOUGHT THE VEHICLE NEW AND HAVE BEEN SATISFIED UP UNTIL THIS NOISE STARTED. AT 1ST IT SEEMED RELATED TO THE COLD WEATHER BUT THAN IT STARTED GETTING MORE NOTICEABLE IN ANY WEATHER. I DID TAKE IT TO A FRIEND WHO IS A MECHANIC AND HE FELT TOYOTA SHOULD FIX THE PROBLEM THAT IT COULD BE VERY COSTLY AND HE WASN'T COMPLETELY SURE WHAT TO REPLACE TO CORRECT THE PROBLEM. LET'S HOPE IT IS NOTHING TO WORRY ABOUT AS I DO HAVE MY GRANDCHILDREN IN MY VEHICLE FREQUENTLY.

I LOVE THIS RAV4 BUT IT WORRIES ME THAT SOMEDAY THE STEERING WILL BE MORE THAN JUST A NOISE AND CAUSE A REAL STEERING CONCERN, NOT JUST A BIG ANNOYANCE. HOW CAN TOYOTA BE PROUD OF THEIR NAME IF SO MANY HAVE THE SAME COMPLAINT? MY HUSBAND AND I WERE THINKING OF TRADING OUR CHEVY SILVERADO FOR A VENZA BUT NOW WE ARE HAVING SECOND THOUGHTS. THERE ARE SEVERAL OTHER MAKES THAT ARE JUST AS NICE LOOKING AND LESS PROBLEMS.

- Nancy L., Camillus, NY, USA

problem #23

Mar 012013

RAV4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 45,000 miles

2006 Rav4 only has 45,000. This kind of crap shouldn't happen until after 75,000 or more. Very EXPENSIVE to fix if not covered under warranty. Mine was up last year!

- ambbecky12, Pawtucket, RI, USA

problem #22

Oct 182012

RAV4 Sport 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 65,000 miles

Took it to garage, they told me I need to replace the shaft, told there was a bulletin out about it. So I call toyota, they tell me they have not heard of this problem.

- Shawn H., Whitman, WV, USA

problem #21

Jan 012010

RAV4 Sport 2.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 50,000 miles

Front end sometimes makes loud creaking and clunking noises. Toyota checked, heard the noises but couldn't determine the cause. My mechanic - same. SO, I'm stuck with a vehicle that sometimes sounds like the front end is going to fall apart.

Whatever happened to Toyota quality??

- Michael R., Maple Ridge, BC, Canada

problem #20

Apr 142010

RAV4 Sport 2.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 60,325 miles

Steering clunking noise got more noticeable after 55,000 miles. Toyota said they had few complaints about this issue - really?? Seems to be a pretty common complaint when I check online.

Too many issues with this vehicle overall, done with Toyota for now after we had 5 in the past 12 years.

- Michael R., Maple Ridge, BC, Canada

problem #19

Dec 312006

RAV4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 3,000 miles

I bought this car brand new, paid almost $40,000 for the vehicle, a couple months later there was a clunking sound in the steering. Brought to Toyota Service several times for servicing, point out the problem but was never fixed nor grabbed any attention. In November 2009 brought to Toyota for servicing, the associate just decide to twist the steering and recorded the issue then and told it was going to cost me an enormous amount of money to fix. I argued with them so they decide to goodwill it and gave me a year warranty. Unfortunately, the sound came back in August 2011 and I brought it to their attention in late September, they told me it needs replacing of the steering shaft and i need to come up with $600.00. I am still screaming at them, as this seems to be a defect on these cars. Not sure how to approach this, still thinking about what to do and seeing that 18 people have this same problem, Toyota should make an effort to correct it.

- Merlin R., Miramar, FL, USA

problem #18

Mar 012011

RAV4 Limited V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 100,000 miles

I'm a single mother of 2 with a tight budget. I bought the 06 Rav4 in February 2011 with 96k miles on it. It fit my budget and offered every feature I needed since I have two boys & very active in the outdoors. It sounded/looked excellant, test drove excellant,...thought miles were no issue as my history with Toyota was that they made very reliable vehicles. Husband once traded Toyota truck in with 400k miles and still ran like a champ!! I did not purchase extended warranty due to a tight budget & never had use for one in the past with Toyotas being such great vehicles - seemed like a waste of money. Toyota gives a standard 6mo/6k mile warranty anyways. Wouldn't you know, 1 month later, my Rav4 steering started making popping/klunking noises (could feel in steering wheel) at low speed turning both left/right. Also noticed the tranny acting funny - sometimes seems confused between 1st & 2nd gear (but that will be detailed in another complaint).

A month goes by & I decided to do some research regarding this popping sound. I found nearly 400,000 hits on google regarding Rav's having this problem. Not good! At the end of April I contacted dealership (Toyota of Yakima, WA). They said no recall was out for this steering issue. I commented on how popular this problem is, that the steering problem seems to be an epidemic. Service Dept said they do not know of steering epidemics in Rav4s. I managed to reproduce sound in dealership parking lot while mechanic was in the car with me. Service Mngr told me its purely a design flaw. Its safe to continue driving it, it will not worsen. Or I can replace the intermediate shaft. I seriously did not believe that the issue is safe & would not worsen. So I asked them to replace the shaft. Because of the 6mo warranty, they replaced the intermediate shaft for free. I doubted that would fix the problem from all the research I read on what fixed the issue for others (knuckle/ujoints/bearings,etc), but waited to say anything unless I heard the sound again. Drove it out of dealership - no sound. But when I got home, it made popping sound in driveway & on way to work next morning. Called dealership - they said to wait for grease to work itself in. Why wasn't I told this when I left dealership? I doubted this answer as I'm led to beleive replacing a part should be an immediate cure, right? I asked if they replaced anything with the shaft (bearing, ujoints, links, stabilizers, bushings, struts, etc). Service Mngr instantly had an attitude with me, telling me no - only the shaft, that their mechanics are highly qualified, get specialized schooling and know what their doing. I realize I'm not a mechanic by any means, I told him I'll drive it another week to see if the advice of "working the grease in" works. 1 week later it's not better, but same as before if not worse. I left a voicemail for my salesman to complain again how unhappy I am, he doesnt return it but 2 days later.

I am very upset about having these problems after only owning it for 3 months!! I remark possibly buying a lemon & returning it for something else. However because I commute 45 min to work daily.......I'm now beyond the 6k mile warranty (6700 miles post purchase, to be exact). Anything they do to my car now will more then likely be charged to me. The vehicle is going back to the service dept tomorrow morning (Fri 5/27/11) to see what could further be done for the steering and transmission. Then they will determine whether to charge me, pay for it themselves, or allow me to trade in (keep in mind salesman told me they could possibly add the mechanical costs against the vehicle value if I trade it in). I'm thoroughly disgusted with Toyota of Yakima, its sales & service....not to mention Toyotas Rav4. After this issue I'm never going to buy Toyota again nor recommend to anyone I know. What a disapointment and I see that I'm NOT alone. If the steering & tranny issue are not recalled....they should be. How many people need to be injured/killed for a recall to be activated? If its all blamed on poor design, its NO excuse either. What has Toyota become? Single mothers, or anyone for that matter......can NOT afford to spend thousands of dollars and always fear if the only vehicle they own will get them where they need to go. I am absolutely scared, worried, ashamed & extremely angry that I'm in this situation.

- sn98937, Naches, WA, USA

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