2004 Toyota Camry Problems You Need To Know Before Buying

Last Updated on February 11, 2023 by Leepu Da Maxim

The 2004 Toyota Camry is a great sedan that offers a comfortable and pleasant driving experience. Most drivers who have driven this car, really love it for its features; but it also has some problems that are common in most of them. These problems include brake malfunction, transmission problems, and engine issues.

Key Takeaways

  • Automatic Transmission problems are very common for the 2004 Toyota Camry and the problems include slipping, harsh shifting, etc.
  • Most drivers who have driven the 2004 Toyota Camry have experienced problems with the engine like excessive oil consumption, check engine light illumination, etc.
  • The 2004 Toyota Camry also has problems with the suspension like excessive bouncing or sagging
  • Many 2004 Toyota Camry owners also faced problems with the power windows, power locks, air conditioning system, etc.

Top Seven Most Common 2004 Toyota Camry Problems

Most Common 2004 Toyota Camry Problems

1. Brake Malfunction

Brake problems are the most common in 2004 Toyota Camry models. Some of the signs of faulty brakes are brake light warnings, stiff or soft brake pedals, car shakes, and intermittent brake failure. Brake malfunction in Toyota Camry can be caused by lots of factors including a faulty actuator, weak master cylinder, or electric system. If you notice any hiccups in how your car brakes, visit a mechanic or dealership right away since these problems can cause fatal accidents. Always ensure your car is serviced as regularly as recommended since old brake fluid can also cause brakes to malfunction. Before you start any trip on your 2004 Toyota Camry, check to see if the brakes are functioning properly and there are no brake light warnings.

To avoid brake malfunctions, we recommend keeping up with regular servicing as recommended by the manufacturer. Replace brake pads regularly to keep the calipers safe from damage and change the fluid every 30,000 miles to keep your brake system functioning at optimum condition.

2. Automatic Transmission Fluid Leaks

Fluid leaks are not very common but some cases have been reported in the 2004 Toyota Camry. Fluid leaks result in numerous transmission issues including delayed gear engagement and slipping. You need to change your transmission fluid every 30,000 to 60,000 miles and check for leaks regularly. If your transmission fluid is too old, the car will start producing weird noises that are disturbing to the ear. You might also experience shudders or have a hard time changing gears which is risky. If you notice that the transmission fluid is leaking, consult your mechanic right away to get it fixed.

3. Rapid And Excessive Oil Consumption 

The first thing you will notice after a few weeks of driving a 2004 Toyota Camry is how fast you need to refill the engine oil. This model burns engine oil quite fast making it need a refill or oil change after low mileages. Oil consumption problems in the 2004 Toyota Camry are caused by various reasons including exhaust system issues or oil leaks. Always ensure you check oil levels regularly, check the condition of the engine in case any rebuilding is required, and replace oil pistons to solve this issue.

4. Faulty Transmission

Transmission problems are common among most vehicle models and not just the 2004 Toyota Camry. Some of the signs of a faulty transmission included delayed gear engagement, gear shifts, deceleration, erratic acceleration, and transmission slips. If your car has signs of faulty transmission, it is advisable to take it to a Toyota dealership for checks. Most times when a vehicle has transmission issues, the mechanic will need to change the drive system or replace some items such as the transmission mount.

5. Cracked Panels That Cause Wind Noise Problems

A number of the 2004 Toyota Camry drivers reported wind noise problems that were a result of cracked window panels. If your car has cracked panels, you can take it to Toyota for a replacement. The noise is usually caused by the difference in pressure between the interior and exterior as the car is moving. Toyota has recalled some 2004 Toyota Camry due to this problem and if you’re experiencing the same, you can wait for a recall or take the car to a Toyota dealership.

6. Faulty Air Conditioning System

There’s nothing as uncomfortable as driving in a car whose temperature you can’t control; AC systems not only make your car comfortable but also add value to your car. Some people have noted a problem with their AC system even when it’s turned off. Some cars get too cold while others get too hot meaning turning the AC of doesn’t help. This problem is mostly an indicator of radiator problems and can be solved by replacing the thermostat housing or changing the air conditioning system. If you notice a faulty AC, contact your mechanic to have it fixed. 

The signs to look out for to know if it’s time to replace your AC compressor include: the AC not working, clicking sounds from the engine, and the cold air not coming from the AC. We recommend turning on the AC from time to time to keep the seals from drying up. Get your car checked if the air coming out of the AC is not as cold as it should be.

7. Broken Engine And Transmission Mounts

Engine and transmission mounts secure the transmission and engine to the vehicle’s frame and also absorb engine vibrations and road shock to keep the driver from feeling any engine movement. If any of these mounts breaks, you will feel significant engine movement. Whenever you notice your engine moving or behaving oddly especially when driving uphill or accelerating, schedule an appointment with your mechanic to have your mounts checked. When you suspect that your transmission mounts are broken, do not drive for long because the vehicle might strain and have severe transmission and axle shaft damage.

Cost Of Repairing Common Toyota Camry Problems

Toyota Camry is a reliable vehicle that is affordable to maintain: on average, owners spend approximately $500 annually on maintenance depending on their service provider. When buying this vehicle, you can be sure you won’t spend much at the garage. Now that you know of the common problems in a Toyota Camry, you might be curious to find out how much it costs to repair them. The average repair cost of the 2004 Toyota Camry is $300 but that will depend on the specific issue. Below is a table showing a breakdown of repair costs for this vehicle model. From this table, you will have all the information you need to give you an upper hand when bargaining with your mechanic.

Type of service on 2004 Toyota CamryCost of partsCost of labor
AC replacement $506$532
Brake caliper replacement$62$171
Engine or transmission mount replacement $136$142
Car starter repair$107$95
Car door mirror replacement$155$95 

 Frequently Asked Questions On Toyota Camry

Q. How Many Miles Can A Toyota Camry Last?

With regular care and maintenance, a Toyota Camry can last up to 300,000 miles without experiencing any major issues. Always remember that how long a card lasts depends on a lot of factors such as your driving habits, maintenance practice, and location.

Q.  Is The 2004 Toyota Camry A Reliable Car?

Yes, Toyota Camry has a positive and high rating for reliability and is quite dependable. According to the repair pal, the Toyota Camry has a reliability rating of 4 out of 5. One thing most drivers love about this car has to be its excellent ownership costs.

Final Word

The 2004 Toyota Camry is a good and reliable vehicle model that is affordable to buy and maintain. It is dependable and has high-reliability ratings for its rear chances of a breakdown. We recommend this vehicle for anyone who wants a dependable car that is affordable to maintain.