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Toyota Service
Toyota Service, Toyota Expert
Category: Toyota
Satisfied Customers: 4597
Experience:  30+ Yrs of auto experience, Award Winning Svc. Manager; Just Answer Customer's Choice Award Winner
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I have a 2006 Sienna XLE. 1. There is a gurgling sound

Customer Question

I have a 2006 Sienna XLE. 1. There is a gurgling sound coming from behind the steering wheel and dash. I mention this because it may be contributing to the main issue which is that when I increase the temp in the cabin it blows heat from driver side and ac from passenger side. Yesterday I noticed that when I select heat the passenger side fluctuated between blowing hot and cold and it sounded like a servo was actuating every few seconds..Thoughts as to what could be causing this?
Submitted: 2 months ago.
Category: Toyota
Expert:  Toyota Service replied 2 months ago.

Hello. Welcome to Just Answer. Please allow me to assist you. More often than not, a gurgling sound in the dash indicates the presence of an air pocket traveling thru the pipes that transfer coolant to the heater core in the dashboard Heater box. Normally, this can be from a low coolant condition. This can happen if someone has serviced the cooling system recently, and did not remove all of the air pockets in the cooling system (very common if the mechanic is not familiar with the procedure). Secondly, and a bit more common is the high possibility that the wwater pump impeller shaft seal is seeping coolant. Over time, this small seepage can allow 10-12 ounces of coolant to leak out. The lost coolant is replaced by air, which turns into bubbles as the water pump pumps the coolant. This causes the gurgle and loss of heat at times. The recommendation I have for you on this issue is as follows:

1) get the coolant level checked. If it is low, there is either a leak or someone did not refill the coolant properly (if it was recently serviced)

2) Have the water pump impeller shaft seal inspected for evidence of a coolant leak. If any coolant is noticed, replace the water pump.

Water pump impeller shaft leakage is extremely common on these engines. I would recommend you get this checked as soon as you can, because if the coolant level is low, and gets lower, the engine could eventually overheat if not corrected.

Expert:  Toyota Service replied 2 months ago.

If you have any questions, please feel free to reply. Thanks!

Customer: replied 2 months ago.
Thanks for the response but that was NOT my question. It was a something that is happening that may help you answer my question about the heating cooling issue "...the main issue which is that when I increase the temp in the cabin it blows heat from driver side and ac from passenger side. Yesterday I noticedthat when I select heat the passenger side fluctuated between blowing hot and cold and it sounded like a servo was actuating every few seconds..Thoughts as to what could be causing this?"
Customer: replied 2 months ago.
My question is, what is causing my passenger-side heating to be throwing cold air intermittently when the driver side is on hot?
Expert:  Toyota Service replied 2 months ago.

Sorry; deepest apologies. The only thing (assuming you do not have a coolant flow issue)that will cause your issue is the air temperature servo on the passenger side of the heater box. The air temp servo is a small electronically controlled device that responds to commands form the heater/ac control panel. It moves a baffle inside the heater box to admit, or restrict heated air thru the vent tubing. These servos are known to fail over time, and thsi would not be an uncommon failure on a 10 year old vehicle. Replacement is rather easy, it is held on by a few screws. I would recommend you visit a Toyota dealer parts dept and purchase the Passenger Side Air Temperature Control Servo Motor and replace it.

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