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DruLS

Hello from Manchester

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Hi everyone, 

I'm Andy and I've just signed up for an account so thought I'd introduce myself and say hello. 

Never owned a Lexus before but I have been pining after one since the age of about 13 when my then neighbor had a mint condition MK4 LS400 in blue. 

I'm now 28, and while probably younger then the usual demographic of LS owners I'm now in a position to buy one. 

It seems to be getting harder to find a decent LS400 these days so I've been looking at the LS430. Not a massive fan of the styling of that model although it had been growing on me lately. 

So I've just put down a deposit on a 2005 LS430 which I'll be going to see this Saturday. It appears to be in pretty good condition based on the photos so if it all checks out I'll certainly be driving home in it. It's silver with the grey interior and pretty much every option bar the radar cruise control. 65,000 miles with a full service history. It looks like it's due a cam belt service which I understand isn't a cheap job, but hopefully I can use that as a bargaining tool during the sale. It comes with the air suspension which I was hoping to avoid for reliabilities sake, but I guess you can't win them all. 

I'll be having it converted to run on LPG soon after I buy it. I do a lot of miles commuting to and from work and have calculated I'd recoup the conversion cost fairly quickly. Coincidentally, if anybody knows of a decent LPG conversion company around Manchester / North West then I'd appreciate some suggestions. I certainly want it doing properly. 

 

 

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Hello and welcome to the LOC.

As you say finding a good LS400 these days is getting harder by the day I’ve had mine 13 years now with one previous Japanese owner.

The one you are looking at looks good but obviously go over everything and make sure it all works. You can check the MOT history on the government website for free to check for any fails or advisories.

The air suspension does fail so check the car sits level (be wary if the engine is warm when you arrive as they may have does this to raise the suspension if one of the struts is leaking.

You should also consider asking the dealer if they are prepared to allow a Lexus dealer to give it a once over before purchase.

I’m sure other members will also chip in with more advice.

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Hi Andy ..

Welcome to the forum and that looks like a nice car .. you will find all the members very knowledgeable and helpful as I have should you have a problem of any kind 

Who is selling the car ? .. i'm in Didsbury and wouldn't mind having a nosy at it if you don't mind

Cheers Gilbert

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59 minutes ago, steve2006 said:

The one you are looking at looks good but obviously go over everything and make sure it all works. You can check the MOT history on the government website for free to check for any fails or advisories.

The air suspension does fail so check the car sits level (be wary if the engine is warm when you arrive as they may have does this to raise the suspension if one of the struts is leaking.

I've had a look through the MOT history and it all looks good. The only fails/advisories it's had relate to tyres and brakes which all appear to have been sorted soon after. Its most recent service included new pads and discs all round so that's one less thing to worry about.

Thanks for the tip regarding the suspension, I'll make sure the engine is cold when I arrive. That's the only thing that worries me about this particular model, I imagine replacement air struts are very expensive. 

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1 hour ago, Gilbert Fudpucker said:

Hi Andy ..

Welcome to the forum and that looks like a nice car .. you will find all the members very knowledgeable and helpful as I have should you have a problem of any kind 

Who is selling the car ? .. i'm in Didsbury and wouldn't mind having a nosy at it if you don't mind

Cheers Gilbert

Car's not local unfortunately so I'll be taking a long boring train ride to get it. Let's hope I don't have to get one back too!

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Just sent you a message Andy.

Lovely car, I sincerely hope it's as good as it looks and you drive it home on Saturday mate.

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Hi everyone, so just to give you all an update I can confirm I'm now the proud owner of an LS430!

I did a through check over the entire car, spending a good 45 minutes before I even test drove it. I found a number of issues that will need rectifying, but nothing too major. Considering the condition the original asking price was too much, but I was able to negotiate a very decent price for it so I was happy to take it away and use the money saved to fix it up. 

The first job I'll be getting done is to have a full cam belt service as it's due for one now. 

The car was described as having a full service history. Unfortunately this turned out to be a lie. It was serviced at a Lexus main dealer for many years. Its most recent services were done at an indy, but there is a gap in the middle with no history. According to the MOT history it was driven very little during this time. The oil looks fairly clean as do all the other fluids. Took the air box apart and the filter looks pretty new. The engine runs very nicely. Starts on the button, runs smooth and all the power seems to be there. The gearbox is very smooth just as it should be.

I'll still be giving it a full service and changing out all the fluids and filters for peace of mind. 

The steering wheel adjustment also isn't working properly. It moves in and out but not up and down (unless I give it a little persuasion). This appears to be a common issue. Good news is I can hear the motor when I click the button, so hopefully no costly motor replacement to fix. 

It's also going to need wheel balancing and/or an alignment. There's some wheel wobble once you hit about 70. 

Other than that the car is in pretty good condition. The air suspension works just as it should. All the interior electrics work great. The stereo works properly and sounds pretty decent. The interior is in really good condition for its age. The body could probably do with a good polish, but is all good other than that. No major scratches or dings to report. The drive home was brilliant. Surprising good MPG on a run for such a large engine, and quite possibly the most comfortable and relaxing car I've driven. I sometimes borrow my Dad's Jaguar XF 3.0d. I love that car, but I honesty think this 15 year old Toyota rides better!

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Congratulations on your new purchase. The 430 is a brilliant car. Get your radiator replaced when you can, or fit a separate trans cooler to avoid water contamination.  Don't panic over it though, it's not that common.

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Glad to hear it all went well Andy, we just need lots of pictures now mate :thumbsup:

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Nicw one Andy .. i'm sure you'll enjoy every moment you even just sit in it .. post some more photo's please

Cheers

Gilbert

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I'm enjoying every minute behind the wheel of this thing. I'm finding any excuse to go for a drive and always opting to take a longer route! I hope that feeling doesn't go away with time.

I will get some more photos soon and post them, I guess I should make a separate thread for that where I can detail the fixes I'll be doing to it. I have oil, filters and spark plugs on their way so I'm hoping to get that done this weekend. Then I need to get the cam belt service done pretty quickly. Any recommendations on where to take it? I have an indy place I usually take my cars to and they've been very good to me in the past, but maybe I should look into getting it done at a dealers or a Lexus specialist?

The transmission cooler is something I was looking into. I need this thing to be as reliable as possible and a blown gearbox isn't going to be fun day for me. Can anybody recommend a decent one? I found this one which seems to come with all the bits I'd need, but not sure if there are any more reputable brands I could choose from. 

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1 hour ago, DruLS said:

I have an indy place I usually take my cars to and they've been very good to me in the past, but maybe I should look into getting it done at a dealers or a Lexus specialist?

Not sure why you'd think that Andy. As long as you know and trust the mechanic/garage then go with them. Cam belts are bread and butter work to any mechanic worth his salt and probably done in their hundreds up and down the country every day. It may be a Lexus LS430 but it's still 'a car' and there's nothing 'Lexus-specific' about a job like that.

That transmission cooler that you linked to is being sold by Paul Frost, who is well known on here and also the sister owners club group on Facebook. I've never had personal dealings with him but he has an excellent reputation and is apparently very helpful. I know he breaks Lexus and sells both these and new parts too, but I'm not sure if he actually works on the cars as such - if he does, he may even do your cambelt for you. Just look at the bottom of that eBay listing for his contact details and have a word because he wouldn't be too far away for you.

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7 hours ago, Herbie said:

Not sure why you'd think that Andy. As long as you know and trust the mechanic/garage then go with them. Cam belts are bread and butter work to any mechanic worth his salt and probably done in their hundreds up and down the country every day. It may be a Lexus LS430 but it's still 'a car' and there's nothing 'Lexus-specific' about a job like that.

That transmission cooler that you linked to is being sold by Paul Frost, who is well known on here and also the sister owners club group on Facebook. I've never had personal dealings with him but he has an excellent reputation and is apparently very helpful. I know he breaks Lexus and sells both these and new parts too, but I'm not sure if he actually works on the cars as such - if he does, he may even do your cambelt for you. Just look at the bottom of that eBay listing for his contact details and have a word because he wouldn't be too far away for you.

I agree, I would go for that cooler from Paul Frost. I did it myself some years ago, a very, very easy job. On my current one I opted for a new radiator but both jobs are just as straightforward and take about the same time.

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So the car is booked for a cambelt service next week. Initially I was going to avoid sending it to Lexus because I’d heard horror stories about high costs, but I came across a forum post where somebody said Lexus of Bolton were pretty competitive on pricing. With them not being too far I gave them a call to enquire. They’ve quoted £520 for a new cambelt and water pump and they’ll even lend me a car while the work is being done. Can’t argue with that! 

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3 hours ago, DruLS said:

They’ve quoted £520 for a new cambelt and water pump and they’ll even lend me a car while the work is being done. Can’t argue with that! 

Be aware that unless you ask for it to be done (and pay extra) they won't change the idlers/tensioners or anything else. You ask for a cambelt change and you get a cambelt change, nothing else.

Just as a comparison, when I had my RX300 I had cambelt changed, idlers/tensioners, water pump and 10 litres of new Toyota Super Long Life Pink Coolant, including labour and VAT for £460 at my local indy place.

Of course, we're talking different cars/engines but I agree, your £520 isn't bad at all for a main dealer.

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22 minutes ago, Herbie said:

Be aware that unless you ask for it to be done (and pay extra) they won't change the idlers/tensioners or anything else. You ask for a cambelt change and you get a cambelt change, nothing else.

Just as a comparison, when I had my RX300 I had cambelt changed, idlers/tensioners, water pump and 10 litres of new Toyota Super Long Life Pink Coolant, including labour and VAT for £460 at my local indy place.

Of course, we're talking different cars/engines but I agree, your £520 isn't bad at all for a main dealer.

That’s a good point I didn’t thing about that. I’ll ask them how much extra it’ll be. I know an Indy place will probably do it cheaper, but at least I know it’ll be a proper job at Lexus and the convenience of being given a loaner car means I don’t have to take time off work. 

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On 4/15/2019 at 3:42 PM, Herbie said:

Be aware that unless you ask for it to be done (and pay extra) they won't change the idlers/tensioners or anything else. You ask for a cambelt change and you get a cambelt change, nothing else.

So I called Lexus the other day and asked if that price included a new tensioner/pulleys. I was expecting a no but to my surprise it did! Cracking deal if you ask me. 

Started a proper thread now for the car over here.

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