Thank you for using just answer and sprry to hear of your issues on the car.
Yes this is a common issue on the car. The piston rings are the cause for this.
Here is what you need to know here:
-First a "rebuild" is not an option, you cannot rehone this engine block to rebuild the engine.
-No there is not a compatable "different" engine that wil work
-Installing a used engine is not a good idea as this engine will likely have the same issue
-If you plan on keeping the car for a while and it is worth repairing then what I advise you do is replace the short block with a NEW one from toyota, this way you get a fresh bottom end with the updated design and you will not have a repair issue, just have a short block installed and have the valve guide seals and timing chain replaced and you will be good to go for the next 200,000 miles.
Thanks for the quick reply. So, the cost to 'rebuild' is about 2000. The estimate I received to replace with a used engine is about 1500. How painful would it be ($) to replace the short block?
And if this is a common issue, which required an updated design, why hasn't Toyota accepted responsibility for it? I know I bought the car used, and as such took a chance - but with 180K on it now, is it really worth it? I travel about 80 miles a day to commute to work.
As I stated you cannot "rebuild" it, you may have a mecahanic that is wiling to do so but what I am telling you is that it will not work, you cannot rehone this block for new rings, you will literally be wasting $2,000 if you have this done.
I already commented on a used engine above. If you just need the car running well again and do not plan on keeping it very long then this may be the best solution.
A short block plus labor is going to put you around $3,000 but is the best solution long term. No toyota has no responsibility beyind powertrain warranty (60,000 miles) on this issue.
I understand completely that a rebuild is not an option for me. A used engine is a short term fix, but honestly it is not possible to invest 3000 in this car. That's nearly what I paid for it. I guess I'm looking for another set of wheels.
Thank you very much for your time and honesty.