Best year(s)? - Toyota Sienna Forum - siennachat.com
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post #1 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-22-2016, 12:02 AM Thread Starter
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Best year(s)?

I'm on the hunt for a first generation Sienna. Any years better than other, or are there any I'd be wise to avoid? Thanks
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post #2 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-24-2016, 10:42 PM
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Re: Best year(s)?

You might be best going with a 2003, as earlier years had potential issues that were worked out by 2003...
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post #3 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-25-2016, 04:30 PM Thread Starter
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Re: Best year(s)?

Thanks pjksr02. Can you tell me what those problems were?
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post #4 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-25-2016, 09:20 PM
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Re: Best year(s)?

If you have no idea, you have research to do.

You might start here:

http://www.consumeraffairs.com/news0...ettlement.html

That said, my 2002 is fine, but I maintain it.
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post #5 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-26-2016, 03:20 AM Thread Starter
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Re: Best year(s)?

Well, I've been researching. Since you said the other years had problems, I assumed you had a reason to say it...like, you knew what they were. And, I ask here, since this is a forum for questions, right?
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post #6 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-26-2016, 10:37 AM
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Re: Best year(s)?

I didn't say they had problems, but potential issues. That's my opinion, and it's also my opinion these issues often manifest due to maintenance choices.

The issues I mentioned have been discussed in the forum recently, by other folks who asked the same question you did. It's not enjoyable repeating the same answers over and over. Here's an example:

http://www.siennachat.com/forum/16-g...uld-avoid.html
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post #7 of 17 (permalink) Old 02-26-2016, 11:03 PM
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Re: Best year(s)?

The cars that get driven a lot and oil changed frequently enough seem to do well. I'd rather have one with 190k mi that was driven medium hard and maintained than one that has 90k mi that never got pushed.

I'd try and buy one that doesn't need the timing belt done in the time you expect to own it.

I've see almost no 2002's and 2003's for sale for some reason.
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post #8 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-14-2016, 01:51 PM
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Re: Best year(s)?

2003 has a improved flow to pull vapors out of the crankcase.
I metal PCV valve that screws into the valve cover vs the traditional press in version.
That said.....making SURE that the PCV valve is clean and keeping your oil changed (high quality synthetic recommended) regularly is a good way to avoid issues.
One that has not had lots of short trip driving and sitting is best (as with any used vehicle).
I have a 2003, but would not hesitate to buy the older years.
Condition is the most important thing.
A great condition 2001 is better than a run down 2003.
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post #9 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-16-2016, 12:25 PM
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Re: Best year(s)?

My 2001 is running great and I'm at 125000 miles, I expect to get 100k more at least, the only issue I have that was fixed on the later models is the power sliding door, mine it's no longer working and fixing it is very expensive, the ECU for the door was improved after 2002, so a 2003 model should be ok on that. I do like the radio position in my dash better than the 98-00 siennas, the interior was changed a little and the radio is a little higher. Also the engine got VVT-I on 2001, it's better on power, but also is one more thing that can go wrong.
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post #10 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-18-2016, 12:22 AM
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Re: Best year(s)?

I have 270,000 miles on my 2001 XLE (my dad was the original owner), and I am doing a cross-country drive this weekend from CO to DC without hesitation.

Besides regular maintenance I have replaced:
air/fuel sensor (once, 2015)
valve cover gaskets (once, 2014)
rear main seal (once, 2014)
all four struts/shocks (once, 2014)

To have a hardly anything go wrong in over a decade is pretty amazing, and I hope to keep this thing for another 10 years or more (I hate car payments).

If I could choose a Sienna though I would rather have a 2004 or so because the 3rd row seats fold flat into the floor, and the sliding doors have power windows. Also the prices for a 2001-2003 vs. a 2004 are pretty close in the areas I live in/travel to (CO, DC, TX).
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post #11 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-18-2016, 04:09 PM
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Re: Best year(s)?

Quote:
Originally Posted by keyboard ninja View Post
...
If I could choose a Sienna though I would rather have a 2004 or so because the 3rd row seats fold flat into the floor, and the sliding doors have power windows. Also the prices for a 2001-2003 vs. a 2004 are pretty close in the areas I live in/travel to (CO, DC, TX).
Just in the last few months have I seen second generation Sienna's for less than $3000. There's a 2005 for $2300 on Craigslist here but it's from a tour company and has over 400k mi on it, that's a lotta miles.

My 2000 Sienna's 3rd row seat has been in the living room with a big blanket over it for several months now. nice

RE second generation Sienna's with sliding doors with power windows: because I often have my dog with me the lack of opening windows in my 2000 Sienna is a bummer. Do all second generation Sienna's have power windows in the sliding doors or is it an option or something that comes with a certain level vehicle?
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post #12 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-19-2016, 09:14 AM
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Re: Best year(s)?

Quote:
Originally Posted by iRt View Post
My 2000 Sienna's 3rd row seat has been in the living room with a big blanket over it for several months now. nice

RE second generation Sienna's with sliding doors with power windows: because I often have my dog with me the lack of opening windows in my 2000 Sienna is a bummer. Do all second generation Sienna's have power windows in the sliding doors or is it an option or something that comes with a certain level vehicle?
Honestly I don't know the answer to the power window question. I hae seen LE's with power windows on the sliding doors, and my 2001 XLE isn't much different than 2004-2005 LE from what I can tell. My Sienna never came with power sliding doors, it doesn't have the overhead entertainment system, and only one of my seats are power adjustable (driver's). Being able to carry my 3rd row even when I don't need them is a big plus....because my seats currently act like a bench in my garage when I watch TV lol.
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post #13 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-20-2016, 05:40 AM
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Re: Best year(s)?

It's amazing how much the 2nd and 3rd row seats weigh in these vehicles.

I started a thread here Sliding Doors with Power Windows about which 2nd generation has power windows in their sliding doors.

5/25/16 update: another thread I started here http://www.siennachat.com/forum/show...586#post130586 got the answer, according to 2nd generation Sienna owners there all the second generation Sienna's had power windows in the sliding doors and they didn't go down all the way, only about 1/2 way.

Last edited by iRt; 05-25-2016 at 09:37 PM.
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post #14 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-21-2016, 12:02 AM
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Re: Best year(s)?

Quote:
Originally Posted by iRt View Post
It's amazing how much the 2nd and 3rd row seats weigh in these vehicles.

I started a thread here Sliding Doors with Power Windows about which 2nd generation has power windows in their sliding doors.

I completely agree that the seats weigh a ton, but my life seems to always be filled with unexpected visits from in-laws. The only problem is that those visits seem to only happen when I'm staying in a location that isn't home for more than 2 weeks at a time. I'm not saying they are using me as a temporary vacation home, but well....yeah...
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post #15 of 17 (permalink) Old 05-24-2016, 12:59 PM
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Re: Best year(s)?

Quote:
Originally Posted by iRt View Post
It's amazing how much the 2nd and 3rd row seats weigh in these vehicles.
I used to make the same trip all the time, around 250 miles, from the coast to 9000ft up in the mountains, I would fill the tank at the start and then, in the last town before my destination, put another $5 (around 3 gallons) of fuel. I was traveling once without any of the back seats, got to the little town, stopped at the gas station as always and I was surprised at how much fuel I had left. I went on my way without putting any fuel and arrived home 70 miles away just fine. Obviously the fact that I was going uphill has a lot to do with it (I didn't notice any change on my way down), but still I was amazed at how much you can save by removing the seats.
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