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2017 XLE AWD
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Discussion Starter #1
Yep. This is exactly what happened.
Partly my fault: I kinda missed the weather approaching the icing threshold, and didn't replace water with winter fluid promptly enough. By sad coincidence, my wife was the first to drive that morning, and when she tried to activate both front and rear washers - she said she heard the buzzing sound first, but no water coming out of nozzles. After a few attempts, she stopped hearing the sound.

The temperature went up during the day, and the water in the washer tank melted. My wife tried to spray out all of it and replace it with winter fluid, which she was able to do - pumps came back working, but... not for long. After she srpayed out all the water and poored the winter fluid, neither the front nor the rear pumps came back online anymore...

Upon inspection one blown fuse was found (rear, 15A). The front washer pump fuse (20A) was intact.

Replacing fuses did not do anything. So I went on and removed both motors, and tested them direct with 12V source. Dead. I cracked one of them open, to discover burned sliding collector contacts. I tried to brush the burned traces off with a sandpaper. The motor started rotating, but was producing sparkles inside, apparently because of improper/uneven contact. So both motors were pronounced officially dead, and replaced with two new OEM pumps.

Situation takeaways:

1) Do not miss the icing conditions - these washer pumps will die.
2) Do not count too much on your Gen 3 - it's a much less robust vehicle. I've had washer fluid frozen quite a few times with my Gen2 during its 13 years of impeccable service, and have never replaced a washer pump...
3) I would love to look into the eyes of that idiot at Toyota who designed the shape, location and "ease of access" of in-cabin fuse box....
 

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I think it is safe to say that most people in North America who live or drive in areas where temperatures are below freezing anytime of the year use washer fluid with antifreeze properties all year round. Is it not the same in Russia?

Pre-mixed detergent washer fluid with antifreeze properties in gallon or larger plastic containers is very widely available here ... in grocery stores, department stores, filling stations, auto parts stores all year round - not just in winter. The typical pre-mixed washer fluid sold where I live has antifreeze properties down to -20 or -25 degrees Fahrenheit. Further north and in high mountain areas, pre-mixed washer fluid has antifreeze properties down to lower temperatures ... -40 or -50 degrees Fahrenheit.

Is mixing your own washer fluid more common in Russia? What is the necessary vodka to water ratio? :D Mixing water with concentrate or alcohol to create washer fluid was common in North America up into the 1970's but is rare here now.

I'm old enough to remember when many cars did not have windshield washers. I remember people installing windshield washer kits in the 1950's and 1960's that had rubber squeeze balls that attached to the floor to the left of the clutch pedal and operated with the left foot. The washer fluid container was commonly a plastic bag that hung from hooks in the engine compartment. I remember that most of these washer fluid bags were barely large to hold enough fluid for a long drive and that they were fragile and required frequent replacement.

The washer fluid pumps on the Sienna certainly are certainly not easy to reach. The only time I have messed with them was when I installed a Hella headlight washer kit: Installing Hella headlamp washers on 2014 Sienna Limited
 

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2017 XLE AWD
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15 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
The washer fluid is easily available, it's just that I prefer not to use it in summer. Less chemistry to inhale :) Because they all stink, one stinks more, another stinks less, but there's always a smell. It's just that winter came unexpected (as it is always the case LOL :)

As I said - my fault, but honestly I wasn't expecting such drastical consequences - a couple of unsuccessful attempts to spin pumps didn't seem too terrible, yet they died (both of them) ha... I wish they had some overcurrent protection, like an electrical drill motor - if the material "bites" on your drill bit, and the drill stops, it does not die immediately.

Oh, and Vodka should ALWAYS be put into a totally different tank, if you see what I am saying :))))
 
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