Problem with charcoal canister...how it got bad!

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Thread: Problem with charcoal canister...how it got bad!

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    Default Problem with charcoal canister...how it got bad!

    I own a 2003 Toyota Tacoma, 2x4, xtra cab, 4 cylinder engine. I has aprox. 70 000Kms on the odometer. It runs great. I inherited it from my father who passed away 2 years ago. A couple of days ago the engine malfunction light came on and stayed on. Toyota dealer trouble shooted it to a bad charcoal filter and possibly bad after market locking gas cap I put on several months ago. I replaced the gas cap with the original Toyota cap and light is still on.

    Two years ago my dad had it filled at a Co-op gas station. The attendant filled it with diesel and afterwards told my dad of the mistake. He told my dad to run it and it would be fine. Also gave my dad several free gas tanks of fuel. The truck ran without any problems.

    My question is the following! Could the diesel fuel have damaged the charcoal cannister and only now the engine light came on ?
    Toyota dealer tells me the fix is CA$650.00 plus the CA$119.00 they already charged me to find the problem.

    Too bad I'm not heading to the good old USA anytime soon or I'd have the work done there for way less money. Anyway, can someone give me their best opinion as to what to do please. Also, do you think the diesel had anything to do with damaging the charcoal cannister ?
    Thank you.
    R. M.
    Last edited by renoir911; 04-15-2009 at 05:17 PM. Reason: I copied and pasted it from another forum where it was wrongly placed. It copied with other stuff that I had not writen.

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    Default Re: Problem with charcoal canister...how it got bad!

    Did they tell you what code(s) are setting the check engine light?
    We have had many vehicles with diesel in them get towed or driven in and usually just drain the tank , fill with fuel and drive them for a short time. Never had any real issues.
    A code would help us diag better.
    I personally do not think diesel had anything to do with this. The aftermarket gas cap = yes, we have seen issues with some of them, but like you said...the light should have gone out by now (theoretically).

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    Default Re: Problem with charcoal canister...how it got bad!

    Thank you for your reply.
    Here are the codes as they appear on the Toyota Service dept. invoice.

    P0441
    P0442
    P0446EVAP

    Service dept. invoice states "Will require new charcoal canister and gas cap".

    Looking forward to your response.
    Kind regard.

    R. May

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    Default Re: Problem with charcoal canister...how it got bad!

    With those codes and me not seeing the evap test results, i'd have to say they are on the right track. The aftermarket gascap has to go #1, and the canister is the next logical component as long as the rest of the system passed the active tests. The diesel may have contaminated the canister, but its probably just a coincidence.

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    Default Re: Problem with charcoal canister...how it got bad!

    Again, many thanks for your quick response.
    I got rid of the gas cap last week and put on 300Km's. I also disconnected the battery for a while and reconnected it. The engine trouble light has gone off after doing that. I put on about 30Km's since and still no engine light. Truck runs fine. I called the Toyota Service dept. and they told me the light will come back on! They ordered the charcoal canister after making me sign a waver that if I do not go any further with this I will still have to pay for the charcoal canister (on my credit card). They are doing this because they have had several clients not show up after parts were ordered so they are stuck with the parts. In my case, I have been one of their best clients and they've always treated me well. But the tought remains, is the canister really the cause or was it just the aftermarket gas cap that was the cause ! Someone else had told me to disconnect the engine computer, or the negative post on the battery for a few minutes and reconnect it. If the light went away and did not come back, it was the gas cap! Question is, how long would it take for the light to return if the charcoal canister is also at fault ?
    This will probably be my last question on this thread and I truly appreciate your responses Sir. This website is fortunate to have good folks like you so quick to help people like myself.
    May you have a great day.

    R. May

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    Default Re: Problem with charcoal canister...how it got bad!

    After the evap monitor has ran a the test it and if it see's a problem it will come back on. The evap system is a 2 trip system which means it will have to see a problem 2 times before it will turn a light on. About a week and if it don't come back on then the cansister should be fine.

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    Default Re: Problem with charcoal canister...how it got bad!

    Conditions for the EVAP MONITOR to run:
    To complete the Internal Pressure Readiness monitor, you must perform a Cold Soak procedure prior to
    conducting the driving pattern procedure.
    Cold Soak Preconditions
    The monitor will not run unless:
     MIL is OFF
     Fuel level is approximately 1/2 to 3/4
     Altitude is 7,870 feet (2,400 m) or less
    Cold Soak Procedure
    (a) Start the engine and allow coolant temperature to reach 176F (80C) or higher
    (b) Let vehicle cold cold soak for 8 hours or until the difference between IAT and ECT is less than 13F
    (7C)
    Before starting the engine, the difference between ECT and IAT must be less than 13F (7C)
    Examples:
    Scenario 1
    ECT = 75F (24C)
    IAT = 60F (16C)
    Difference between ECT and IAT is 15F (8C)
    " The monitor will not run because difference between ECT and IAT is greater than 13F (7C)
    Scenario 2
    ECT = 70F (21C)
    IAT = 68F (20C)
    Difference between ECT and IAT is 2F (1C)
    " The monitor will run because difference between ECT and IAT is less than 13F (7C)
    * NOTE for 2002 and later MY vehicles:
    The readiness test can be completed in cold ambient conditions (less than 40F/4.4C) and/or at high
    altitudes (more than 7,870 feet/2,400 m) if the drive pattern is repeated a second time after cycling
    the ignition off.
    Drive Pattern
    (a) Connect the OBD II scan tool to the DLC3 to check monitor status and preconditions.
    (b) Release pressure in fuel tank by removing and then reinstalling the fuel tank cap.
    (c) Start the engine and allow to idle until ECT is 167F (75C) or higher.
    (d) Run the engine at 3,000 rpm for about 10 seconds.
    (e) Allow engine to idle with the A/C ON (to create a slight load) for 15 50 minutes.
    NOTICE: If vehicle is not equipped with A/C
     Securely set the parking brake.
     Block the drive wheels with wheel chocks.
     Allow vehicle to idle in drive for 15 50 minutes.

    The way you described it, it was the gas cap.

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    Default Re: Problem with charcoal canister...how it got bad!

    Quote Originally Posted by renoir911 View Post
    Again, many thanks for your quick response.
    I got rid of the gas cap last week and put on 300Km's. I also disconnected the battery for a while and reconnected it. The engine trouble light has gone off after doing that. I put on about 30Km's since and still no engine light. Truck runs fine. I called the Toyota Service dept. and they told me the light will come back on! They ordered the charcoal canister after making me sign a waver that if I do not go any further with this I will still have to pay for the charcoal canister (on my credit card). They are doing this because they have had several clients not show up after parts were ordered so they are stuck with the parts. In my case, I have been one of their best clients and they've always treated me well. But the tought remains, is the canister really the cause or was it just the aftermarket gas cap that was the cause ! Someone else had told me to disconnect the engine computer, or the negative post on the battery for a few minutes and reconnect it. If the light went away and did not come back, it was the gas cap! Question is, how long would it take for the light to return if the charcoal canister is also at fault ?
    This will probably be my last question on this thread and I truly appreciate your responses Sir. This website is fortunate to have good folks like you so quick to help people like myself.
    May you have a great day.

    R. May
    Are you saying the even though the dealer is not yet positive of what the problem is they are making you buy a charcoal canister anyway????

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    Default Re: Problem with charcoal canister...how it got bad!

    Yes.
    When the Toyota Service dept. diagnosed the problem as a faulty aftermarket gas cap AND faulty charcoal cannister, they told me it needed to be fixed. From there they walked me to the Parts dept., told them what needed to be ordered and then told me in order to go ahead I had to sign a form that basically makes me pay for the part(s) ordered should I fail to show up OR decide against going ahead with the repairs. So I guess the day they've set for repair work is the day I automatically pay for the part whether repair is done or not. They then took my credit card info! I did not know anything about this type of problem and how it would affect engine performance so I agreed to the repairs at end of month. However, now that I discovered this forum, I found professional opinions that make me believe I should have first tried changing the gas cap and reset the light. I have since done that and light has not come back on after many small trips. I went back to the dealer and explained what I now knew and asked them to be absolutely certain the canister is faulty before replacing it. They really do not know what to do now that I provided them with more info then they had initially on this problem. They asked me how I knew so much about this problem and I directed them to this forum so they could read my postings and responses. I believe they understand my side, that I do not want to pay for repairs I do not need, but they also have their own problems with other people ordering parts and repair work and getting stuck with no shows! The guys at Service and Parts are excellent folks, but one thing I mentioned to them is that they were too quick at ordering the new cannister without having tried other options first, ie: new gas cap and drive for a while, or perform other tests as mentioned to me in this forum. Right now, my truck is in for the the"Toyota Solution" undercoating fix which Toyota is doing for free. I am away and left the truck there so not sure what they will actually do about the cannister. I trust them to do the right thing as they have always been fair to me. I've been a Toyota owner since 1978 and have spent plenty of money purchasing new Toyotas. Love the vehicles and will stay with Toyota products.

    Hope this answers your questions as to how this Toyota dealer (Lethbridge Toyota) has to do business these days.

    By the way, I pay immediately and in full for any and all repair work and have an excellent credit rating.

    Have a great day.
    Last edited by renoir911; 04-22-2009 at 07:11 AM. Reason: mistakes and added info.

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    Default Re: Problem with charcoal canister...how it got bad!

    Quote Originally Posted by renoir911 View Post
    Yes.
    When the Toyota Service dept. diagnosed the problem as a faulty aftermarket gas cap AND faulty charcoal cannister, they told me it needed to be fixed. From there they walked me to the Parts dept., told them what needed to be ordered and then told me in order to go ahead I had to sign a form that basically makes me pay for the part(s) ordered should I fail to show up OR decide against going ahead with the repairs. So I guess the day they've set for repair work is the day I automatically pay for the part whether repair is done or not. They then took my credit card info! I did not know anything about this type of problem and how it would affect engine performance so I agreed to the repairs at end of month. However, now that I discovered this forum, I found professional opinions that make me believe I should have first tried changing the gas cap and reset the light. I have since done that and light has not come back on after many small trips. I went back to the dealer and explained what I now knew and asked them to be absolutely certain the canister is faulty before replacing it. They really do not know what to do now that I provided them with more info then they had initially on this problem. They asked me how I knew so much about this problem and I directed them to this forum so they could read my postings and responses. I believe they understand my side, that I do not want to pay for repairs I do not need, but they also have their own problems with other people ordering parts and repair work and getting stuck with no shows! The guys at Service and Parts are excellent folks, but one thing I mentioned to them is that they were too quick at ordering the new cannister without having tried other options first, ie: new gas cap and drive for a while, or perform other tests as mentioned to me in this forum. Right now, my truck is in for the the"Toyota Solution" undercoating fix which Toyota is doing for free. I am away and left the truck there so not sure what they will actually do about the cannister. I trust them to do the right thing as they have always been fair to me. I've been a Toyota owner since 1978 and have spent plenty of money purchasing new Toyotas. Love the vehicles and will stay with Toyota products.

    Hope this answers your questions as to how this Toyota dealer (Lethbridge Toyota) has to do business these days.

    By the way, I pay immediately and in full for any and all repair work and have an excellent credit rating.

    Have a great day.
    I like the products too. I even build cars for them, Corolla and Matrix to be exact. And I own a tundra and a sienna. But if my dealer told me I had to buy a charcoal canister, and it was probably around $400, before they even did any work, I would not hesitate to tell them to shove their parts, and their business practices for that matter. If there is another Toyota dealer in Lethbridge I would be phoning them about this practice. Isnt one of the guys who responded to you hear a toyota mechanic? You could ask him as well. If all that does not work you should call TCI (Toyota Canada Inc). I have never heard of paying for a part that you might not even use.

    Anyone else here want to anti up some advice on this???

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    Default Re: Problem with charcoal canister...how it got bad!

    Quick update.
    Well, the dealership replaced the canister because "the light would have come back on anyway" was what I was told today. There is no other Toyota dealer here, closest one is 3 hours away. I did ask for the origina canister to be returned to me but without knowing what to look for, I have no idea if it was faulty or not. We trust our dealers to do the right thing for us and this dealer has not given me reason (yet) to not trust them. I had problems with Nissan before and will never own a Nissan product again. Anyway, my problem is fixed no matter what and I have to trust the service department did the right thing. I will be interesting to see what others have to say about this practice of charging for a part no matter what! Thank you for your comments and advice.

    R.M.
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    Default Re: Problem with charcoal canister...how it got bad!

    9 out of 10 times the dealer I work at doesn't make you pay for a special order part. If the customer choose's to have the the repair fix we order the part and customer pays when the repair is fixed. Now the 1% of the time the dealer (may) ask for money up front before we order is something like a motor / transmission a high dollar part. Now with a walk in parts customer I think the parts dept is kicking around the idea for charging up front on special ordered parts ( cause they are getting stuck with special order parts that the customer won't come back and pick up. Our parts dept. does call and let the customer know there part is in. When I say special order I'm talking about stuff the dealer doesn't keep in stock day by day. It does seem like you was pushed into buying the cansister. On the old cansiter unless you can see with a naked eye then you want see the fault. Lots of cause's on the cansister problems is: leaks in the joints, v.s.v. on the cansister goes bad, or the cansister is flooded with gas over a period of time and charcoal can't do it's job also the build in pump on the newer models goes bad. You can test with a handheld vacum pump to check for leaks.

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    Default Re: Problem with charcoal canister...how it got bad!

    Quote Originally Posted by ROKTOY829 View Post
    9 out of 10 times the dealer I work at doesn't make you pay for a special order part. If the customer choose's to have the the repair fix we order the part and customer pays when the repair is fixed. Now the 1% of the time the dealer (may) ask for money up front before we order is something like a motor / transmission a high dollar part. Now with a walk in parts customer I think the parts dept is kicking around the idea for charging up front on special ordered parts ( cause they are getting stuck with special order parts that the customer won't come back and pick up. Our parts dept. does call and let the customer know there part is in. When I say special order I'm talking about stuff the dealer doesn't keep in stock day by day. It does seem like you was pushed into buying the cansister. On the old cansiter unless you can see with a naked eye then you want see the fault. Lots of cause's on the cansister problems is: leaks in the joints, v.s.v. on the cansister goes bad, or the cansister is flooded with gas over a period of time and charcoal can't do it's job also the build in pump on the newer models goes bad. You can test with a handheld vacum pump to check for leaks.
    I have to agree with this.
    What they did was wrong in my opinion.

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    Default Re: Problem with charcoal canister...how it got bad!

    It's your money but if it were me I would be going back to the dealer and getting my money back for the canister. You have 2 certified mechanics-one at least works for Toyota- telling you what they did was wrong. If you want to trust someone, maybe you should trust the advice of the 2 mechanics who dont have their hands in your pockets and have nothing to gain from giving you free advice. I too say the dealer was wrong but I am not a mechanic. I trust my dealer too but that does not mean that they will always do the right thing. Sometimes you have to question them. Take the canister back and make them put it back on the car and give you back your money. If they say no, tell them you are going to call TCI, and explain to them how you were treated, and you have the old canister, and you are going to have them test it. If I were a betting man I think you would see your service department realize their mistake.
    Last edited by cheapskate; 04-23-2009 at 03:47 AM.

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    Default Re: Problem with charcoal canister...how it got bad!

    I'm going to have that charcoal cannister tested by a third party. If there is nothing wrong with it, I will follow your advice to have Toyota put it back on my vehicle.
    Many thanks for the invaluable advice from all of you.
    R. May

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