18th Dec 2003, 19:25

I have a '98 Camry XLE and have the same issues -- a front-end rattling noise emanating from the suspension.

I looked around on the Internet, and came across a Toyota technical service bulletin (TSB) listed on AllData that seems to address this problem on both the '97-'98 Camry and Avalons:

SU001-00 JAN 00 Suspension - Front Support Change Reduces Noise.

My plan of action is to print these pages out and then give a local Toyota dealership service department a call, and state that I have THE front-end suspension noise problem specified by Toyota TSB SU001-00. I want to have it fixed as outlined by TSB SU001-00.

Unfortunately, my warranty is expired. Best of luck, and hope this helps.

25th Dec 2003, 22:17

Ditto on the rattle sound on my wifes 97 4 cylinder Camry LE, passenger side, 53,000 miles. The shaking has slowly worsened over the last 10,000 miles. It drives me crazy. The previous comment was very helpful. I'm writing Toyota.

28th Dec 2003, 14:18

Bought my 1999 Avalon XL 5 months ago. It only had 23 000 KMS (apr 14 000 miles). I already had to replace the 2 fronts brake ABS sensors (500$). Had to replace some cannister of some sort as the check engine light came on (300$) and of course. Of course all of these repair costs came out of my pocket as the car was more than three years old. My car is driving me crazy whenever its below freezing point.. Yes, I have the same rattling problem on the passenger side of the car. Toyota??? Way overrated, way overpriced. I should have stuck with the Mercury Sable I have been driving for 9 nearly trouble free years.

29th Dec 2003, 21:16

Regarding rear end noise, I did find one suspension alignment nut loose on the left side, and tightened it to solve a major rattle. There's still noise in the back that I think is trunk pan resonance. Toyota glued some felt to dampen the noise. Lift the mat and tap the trunk floor, especially the right side. The plastic tray on the left can rattle as well as the spare tire cover. I've put on the heavier carpeted rubber Avalon mat that seems to help dampen the rear noise.

My 95 Camry wagon (218,000 KM) is quiet and solid in comparison.


30th Dec 2003, 19:21

I to have an 98 avalon and have experienced the rattle coming from the passenger side. The car is under warranty and I took it to the Toyota dealership. Well, they said the noise is coming from the strut mount, but that it was not covered under warranty. They did find something wrong with my Rack and Pinion steering though and thankfully that was under warranty since the bill would have been around $1400.00. This car only has 56K miles on it and has been well taken care of. Seems strange with all that I have read on the internet regarding suspension issues that Toyota has not addressed. Thanks for all the information you all have provided.

31st Dec 2003, 12:44

I too have the rattle in my '98 Camry. It is most noticeable when I leave for work in the early morning.

Thank you to the person who provided the service bulletin information. Is this rattle dangerous in any way? Can it potentially cause harm to the vehicle or cause an accident?

Has anyone heard?

If anyone has had this problem diagnosed, please post it here and report it to Toyota. Thank you. The Internet is great for this kind of thing!

1st Jan 2004, 09:50

I own a 97 XLS Toyota Avalon, and I had the rattle sound problem in the front suspension system. The problem is gone. The origin is in the shock links, the two bone like link bars about 10 inches long that connects the shock strut lower end to the stab bar. Their ball joints gets worn and tends to move on rough roads, causing the rattle. They cost about $50 each (they are two, one on each side) and it took me around half an hour to replace them. I also went to ALLDATA.com; it helped me to find solutions regarding other suspension problems.

Good Luck.

2nd Jan 2004, 11:07

I bought a 97' Toyota Avalon XL, {used} and here is the run down.

1. Bought and replaced rack and pinion.

2. Received phone call from dealer, telling me it was not the rack and pinion that needed replacing, but a "knuckle' which connected the rack to the steering wheel.

3. Payed for it anyway

4. Got the car back in the same condition I brought it in.

5. Heard a lot of, "I'm so sorry'

6. Payed for that also.

7. To make matters worse, it's back there again as I type, to get the struts done.

6th Jan 2004, 09:07

I purchased a 97 Avalon XLS and immediately noticed the rattling noise from the front end when winter came. As suggested, the rattling was entirely a result of the worn strut mounts. Cost about $200 Cdn ($160 US) to have each side done. You can obtain a copy of the technical bulletin addressing this issue at your Toyota dealership. The replacement part numbers have been changed several times.

However, there now seems to be a very harsh squeaking noise from the front end when driving over humps that cause the suspension to travel dramatically. Has anyone had this noise?

Also, I am beginning to notice a rattling sound from the rear of the car, which I am hoping is not a result of the rear mounts failing. One comment suggested that a loose "suspension alignment nut" may be the cause? Anyone else find this?

Finally, I read a lot about the rack failing on these cars. Mine has begun to make a faint squealing noise at -25C temperatures. Can anyone tell me what the symptoms of their steering were before rack replacement?

7th Jan 2004, 20:26

I have a 99's Camry 4cyl. Same rattling noise as everyone here is complaining. The noise come from the front while driving in rough road. I have the feeling that the car is coming apart any time now.

Toyota must know about this problem very well. The question is why they don't issue a recall to fix the poor design!!! Are you listening to us Toyota??? Please don't ignore the customers. No manufacturers can do this forever and stay in business.

12th Jan 2004, 11:48

Thanks for all those gave useful information.

I wrote to Toyota, explaining the problem and also pointed to this link telling that it is happening on several cars.

They came back and said, my car is out of warranty and I am on my own. They will not help on this matter. It is very clear that they used some inferior parts on some batches, and we all happened to be unlucky to get them. I would still encourage everyone to write to Toyota and let them feel about their quality.

They give "life time warranty" for the changed part, (struts and mounts) but not for the original one they put while manufacturing. Is there any place where we can complain about it legally? If anyone is aware of it, please post it. Also if any one knows whether it in anyway a safety problem, let us know.

I am afraid to spend money on this, since this is a big ticket item, and still not assure that problems go away.