hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 22
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
67,751 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.

2007 Toyota RAV4 electrical problems

electrical problem

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2007 Toyota RAV4 Owner Comments (Page 3 of 4)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #21

Nov 202010

RAV4 6-cyl

  • miles


The driver door's window/lock control panel spontaneously caught fire while I was operating the vehicle. I was not using the controls at the time. I could hear the sound of burning and feel heat behind the panel, however no actual flames came outside of the panel. Copious amounts of smoke began to billow from the openings in the control panel. I stopped the car and turned off the ignition. After several seconds the sound of burning ceased. The smoke continued to billow from the openings in the control panel for a couple of minutes. I called the Toyota dealer where I purchased the car and was told by the service department to come in. I restarted the car and drove about one mile to the dealership. While I was driving small amounts of smoke continued to come out through the openings in the control panel. At the dealership they placed some kind of "lock" on the driver's side control for the front passenger window. I have since seen the actual control mechanism. A portion of the electrical component is charred, and where this char is there is a hole burned through the plastic enclosure.

- Torrance, CA, USA

problem #20

Jun 202012


  • 59,000 miles
The contact owns a 2007 Toyota rav-4. the contact stated that while attempting to start the vehicle, smoke started to emit out of the driver side door panel. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who was not able to diagnose the problem. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and current mileage was 59,000.

- Manassas , VA, USA

problem #19

May 192012


  • 10,000 miles
The contact owns a 2007 Toyota rav 4. while parked, the front driver's side door ignited into flames. The fire department reported to the scene and a report was filed. The fire began in the front driver's side power master switch. There was an investigation open under NHTSA action number: PE12002 (electrical system) that may be related to the failure. The vehicle was destroyed. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 100,000.

- Fort Pierce, FL, USA

problem #18

Jan 202012

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 125,000 miles


When I turned the car on a smell emanated and smoke came from the window switch area of the front driver door. The passenger side window would no longer work. The smell lingered but the smoke stopped.

- Milford, NH, USA

problem #17

May 092012


  • 90,440 miles
Master window switch burned and emitted smoke with high concentration of irritating fumes throughout the SUV while enroute in Maryland.

- Pasadena, MD, USA

problem #16

Apr 072012

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 70,943 miles
It was a sunny day, and I drove my 2007 Rav4 at the speed of 40 miles per hour. Suddenly, I heard a noise ziiiii from the master window switch at the driver side. I saw an electrical fire at the master window switch at the driver side. The smoke came out from the master window switch. I pulled over my car, turned off the engine and left the car. When the flame went out, I saw a burned hole about quarter size in the switch. Note: There is no water leaked / coffee spilled inside the switch. I went to Toyota dealer. The mechanics stated that the fuse did not blow out. Dealer denied to replacing the switch without charging.

- Brooklyn, NY, USA

problem #15

Jan 102011

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 47,500 miles


Neutral start switch hidden within the confines of the engine management system can fail to work and thus not send a signal to start the engine. According to the head mechanic, the defect is uncertain why it happens other than the standard response that it is normal aspect of wear. I don't agree, since the component is under no stress like for example a spark plug. Thank you for looking in the matter.

- Battle Creek, MI, USA

problem #14

Feb 152011

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 77,950 miles
My wife started vehicle in garage to warm it up when she smelled smoke. She then noticed smoke and flames coming from the drivers side window/power lock switch area. She poured her cup of coffee on the flames to extinguish them. Vehicle was taken to an independent mechanic who had to replace the drivers side master window switch which had burnt up.

- West Jefferson, OH, USA

problem #13

Feb 162012

RAV4 4-cyl

  • miles
A car pulled out of driveway and I touched the brake pedal and my engine increased acceleration when it should have slowed acceleration and I pushed my car into neutral and I pulled cruise control lever towards me and the engine slowed down-my car had been set to cruise at 52 mph. After the incident I shut the cruise control off as I was heading into town. I then pulled into big scoop(canton, il business) parking lot going less than 5 mph-a lady walked in front of my car and I touched the brake and again I experienced unwanted acceleration and again I was quick in shoving car into neutral preventing a serious injury. I went home and called fort Toyota in pekin, il and I took car in Feb, 17, 2012 at noon. They had their top mechanic check it out-he said he could find nothing wrong. They called Toyota's headquarters and they told them it was a floormat issue. They told me that and I told them it had nothing to do with the floormats but rather after touching the brake pedal is when I received unwanted acceleration in both incidents. They asked me several questions about that and they gave me Toyota's headquarters number and gave me a rental car to use. When I called their headquarters they said it was a floormat issue and that was their final statement on the matter. I told them it was a brake issue but they stuck to floormats as the cause and that is why I'm reporting this matter to you as I feel for the safety of all drivers; this issue needs to be resolved by any automaker with unwanted acceleration problems. A first step is to admit that they have the problem then good(safe) things will result. Thank you for hearing me out. It is appreciated very much, [xxx]. information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Canton, IL, USA

problem #12

Feb 112009


  • 18,462 miles
I purchased a new 2007 Rav4 from Toyota of braintree in 2007. 1. in 2009 I could hear wind in the driver's window; I took the vehicle to be checked, Toyota service department said I was hearing things. 2.the driver's door caught fire (I had the keys with me) I had to spend $606.01 to fix it, Toyota said there was water intrusion (I thought, it probably was, because of the air leak previously reported in 2009) 3. the steering wheel felt strange when I drove, I took it back for service, the diagnosis was steering shaft internal failure which needed to be replaced; I fought to get that fixed out of warranty. 5. on November 25, 2011 I was driving, the window fell in on me and on November 26, 2011, I had to have the driver's side window regulator replaced for $338.30 7. now, oil is leaking into the muffler. (I purchase oil frequently) this vehicle is only 4.5 years old and should not have any of these major problems, when I purchased this Rav4, it was going to be my last vehicle purchase because Toyota advertises longevity of their products. I also know people who drive 1990 and 1995 Toyota products who have never had any of these problems. I was also treated very poorly during some of my repair visits. After the door caught on fire, I had a meeting with the owner of Toyota of braintree, [xxx] but his resolution was giving me $13,000 for my vehicle (which I own) and me purchasing a brand new vehicle, which meant I would have a monthly payment. I did contact Toyota headquarters in California and filed a complaint and never received any resolution. Since then I received a letter from the national center for dispute settlement stating they can't help me. Thank you for any assistance, sincerely, Toyota Rav4 owner. Information redacted pursuant to the Freedom Of Information Act (FOIA), 5 U.S.C. 552(B)(6).

- Brookline, MA, USA

problem #11

Nov 082011


  • miles


The contact owns a 2007 Toyota rav-4. the contact stated that the front driver's door caught on fire. The vehicle had been inspected by the dealer and the contact removed all of the switchs and fuses from the door. The vehicle had not been repaired. The failure mileage was unknown and the current mileage was 80,000. The VIN was not available.

- Browns Point, WA, USA

problem #10

Jan 192012

RAV4 6-cyl

  • 48,037 miles
I was driving home from work last January 19 at 5pm I saw my window that it looks like so hot outside and when I tried to open it, I saw a flame coming out from the left power switch. I was so scared because it looks like it was getting big so I stop my car, turn off my engine, get out of the car and call 911. When police and fire department arrived, the fire or flames gone. It was so strange and scary. Good thing I never got hurt and I turned off the engine right away. I file this complaint because I just want you to be aware so that you guys can do any solution for this matter and I don't want anybody to experience what happen to me. Police report # 12-024482.

- Pearl City, HI, USA

problem #9

Aug 292011

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 84,000 miles
Master window power switch caught a fire in August 2011. It had been giving me problems since July 2009. Toyota would not fix it because to many miles. How does a power window stop working on a 2007 Rav4 when it only two years old. Faulty master power switch. It had a burn hole the size of a dime. I'm glad I took a picture of it. The first time I saw smoke was June 2011. I was so afraid to drive the fire trap I traded it in for a new car. The Rav4 was paid off now I have a car loan at 19.9%.

- Crofton, MD, USA

problem #8

Jul 022011

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 88,000 miles
After driving for approximately 15 minutes, I saw a small amount of smoke coming from the drivers door panel and it smelled like an electrical fire. Afterwards, the drivers side power window switch and the passenger side power window switch was not functional. The passenger window would only let down (very slowly) but wouldn't go back up. I took the vehicle to a Toyota service center and they showed me that the main power window switch on the drivers side had a hole burned into it the size of a dime. The service manager said he had never seen anything like this before. Prior to this the passenger window switch was replaced twice between September 2010 and November 2010. However, the replacements still never took care of the problem of the passenger window switch intermittently working. In fact, a couple months ago I was just at the dealership complaining that I was still have the problem with the window switch on the passenger side intermittently working. I never guessed that my car could catch on fire! now I'm a little worried about driving my vehicle! updated 11/17/11 updated 06/06/12

- Portage, IN, USA

problem #7

Apr 032011

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 68,850 miles
Electrical fire starting inside master window control switch. I was cleaning my car with the ignition on battery power (in order to listen to the radio). After approximately 30 minutes I noticed a burnt plastic smell, considerable smoke pouring out of the driver's door and a small tongue of flame from the same place. The source of the fire was (later found to be) the white electrical connector, for the front passenger window master control, where the physical window switch meets the circuit board. I was not touching any window or other controls at the time or within 15 minutes before the fire. The fire stopped rapidly after I took the keys out of the ignition, disconnected the battery cables, popped off the master switch assembly with a screwdriver and then smothered the controls with a wet towel. All the vehicle's windows were inoperable after that. I brought the vehicle to my local Toyota dealership. They performed an inspection and reported that they were ┐mystified┐ as to the cause. The service manager's words were: ┐I've never seen anything like that in my 25 years working on cars.┐ the property damage was confined to the master switch assembly and cost $422 to replace. Toyota refused to pay for this.

- Gainesville, FL, USA

problem #6

Oct 312010


  • 22,300 miles
Last night, my Rav4 battery died due presumably to the rear door light getting accidentally turned on. Upon jump starting the car, everything seemed fine. I drove it home without incident. Then, this morning, the battery was not quite up high enough to start the car, so I jump started it again. It started, but a few hundred feet away, I lost power steering and power brake assist. It required every ounce of force I could muster to turn the vehicle around and get it back to my house. Thankfully, this happened on city streets near my house and not on the highway last night or the chp would have been scraping me off a bridge post. The Rav4 cannot realistically be steered by an average person without the power steering assist because of the gearing ratio, making this a very serious design defect. If a vehicle cannot safely operate, the vehicle should not operate. The problem is that, because the battery plays an integral role in power smoothing, and because the power steering and power brake pumps are electrically operated, a low battery can result in failure of the power steering and brake pumps while the engine is still functional. This can easily result in an uncontrollable vehicle barreling down the highway at 80 mph. I believe that fixing this problem requires a fundamental redesign of the electrically operated pumps to add additional capacitors so that the battery is not playing such a crucial role in smoothing out the pulsating DC from the alternator along with the addition of sensor hardware to detect a low battery condition and activate an indicator light until the vehicle is safe to drive. Ideally, the steering gearbox should also be redesigned with a lower gear ratio so that it does not become undriveable. Without these fixes, the 2007 Rav4 is fundamentally unsafe. This design flaw probably also affects most other late models of Toyota.

- Sunnyvale, CA, USA

problem #5

Sep 032010


  • 55,000 miles
1. while driving a 2007 Toyota Rav4 at low speed, the steering wheel lock engaged, instrument cluster lights flashed and the radio silenced for about 5 seconds. The car was able to be safely stopped. Normal steering resumed radio came back on and cluster lights stopped flashing. The car was driven approximately 2-3 miles and parked for apprx. 1 hour. 2. the car would not start, again no radio, but lights were illuminated to full brightness. No warning/fault light was illuminated. The car was "jump-started". when pulling out of the parking stall, the steering wheel lock engaged again. A tow truck was called. The car engine remained running normally. 3. while loading the car, the tow truck driver had the steering wheel lock engage and disengage repeatedly 4 - 5 times. The Toyota of walnut creek (California) technician states that the problem is a discharged battery, causing the electric power steering assist to not operate and stated that the steering wheel lock cannot engage while the car is in motion. The problem was that the steering wheel lock did engage, not a lack of steering assist. The technician stated he "cannot duplicate" the problem.

- Orinda, CA, USA

problem #4

Jun 032010


  • 56,000 miles
Oem battery died. Vehicle was jump started. During subsequent operation power steering stopped working intermittently causing difficulty steering vehicle.

- Suffolk, VA, USA

problem #3

Oct 102007

RAV4 4-cyl

  • 100 miles
Complaint:second complaint I purchased my Toyota rav 4 2007 in October of 2007. A few months after I had the car I started noticing that the car, for no reason would hesitate, leaving me at times in the middle of crossings an intersections with no power. After others began making comments that there was something wrong I brought it into leith Toyota. The first time was April 24th 2008. I explained to the service advisor I was having intermittent problems with the car. I told him I would start across an intersection (4 lanes) and all of a sudden the car hesitated, there was no power. I would press the gas pedal to the floor and approximately 10-15 seconds later the car would lunge forward. I told them it concerned and scared me. I was told that they could not find any problems. April 28th 2008 I returned again to the dealership advising them there was a problem, I was afraid to drive the car and wanted it fixed. I again was told there was not any problem with the car. This time I refused to leave until the problem was fixed. They finally brought the car back in and told me the models have a problem with the ECM system. I was told they reflashed the ECM system with an update sent by corporate and things should be fine. Yesterday I returned to the dealership. I told them the car was ok for a number of months but again this week I was almost in an accident because the car had started to hesitate again, and I am left in the intersection without power and on-coming traffic. They took the car out and of course the problem is intermittent so they were unable to find anything abnormal. They told me they would check to see if there were any additional computer updates for the problem. The car also looses power on highway at 60 mph, shuts down after a while. They advised me there were no additional updates. I told them the problem is putting me in danger of having an accident. They told me Toyota does not feel this is a problem. Updated IVOQ 07/15/10.

- Raleigh, NC, USA

problem #2

Feb 102008


  • 16,000 miles
I purchased my 2007 Rav4 used in early 2008. It has the factory installed premium jbl 6-disc stereo. Since the day that I have owned it, I have had problems with radio reception. The radio's display was also malfunctioning, so the dealer replaced that, but I still have poor reception. The reception is fine if I am within about 5 miles of a radio tower, but just outside of city limits, I either get static or the signal is lost completely. When I had the display replaced, I told the dealership (bill penney Toyota, huntsville, Alabama) about the poor reception, but they didn't do anything about it.

- Toney, AL, USA

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