With its impressive safety ratings, stellar fuel economy, and great ownership costs, it’s no wonder the Lexus RX 350 is considered one of the top luxury SUVs. Although it does not escape presenting some problems, learn here the main common faults of the Lexus RX 350.
The model also has an expected depreciation rate of 38% after five years, which is better than most SUVs.
How good is the Lexus RX 350?
The Lexus RX 350 received above-average scores in all major reliability ratings. The model has been given a rating of 4.0 out of 5.0, ranking it third out of 17 luxury SUVs.
The automaker’s latest line of RX vehicles also received a reliability score of 85 out of 100 from another pollster, ranking the model second out of ten consumer-rated SUVs.
The annual cost of repair and maintenance for the RX 350 is approximately $550 , which is less than the $800 average for luxury SUVs. RX 350 owners take their vehicles in for unscheduled repairs and maintenance 0.4 times a year with an 8% chance of having a major problem. This is 3% less than its competitors.
The common faults of the Lexus RX 350
Despite having impressive reliability scores, the Lexus RX 350 can have issues caused by damaged or worn parts, which could affect its drivability. Here are the common Lexus RX 350 failures reported across its model years:
1- Defective rain sensors
One of the many advantages of driving a Lexus RX 350 is having a rain-sensing windshield. Allows the vehicle to sense the amount of rain on the windshield, which controls the speed of the wipers.
But while this feature is designed to give drivers a better user experience, it has also been a source of problems for some owners.
Faulty rain sensors have been a commonly reported problem for the 2017 Lexus RX 350 redesign. Some owners have complained that their sensor’s effectiveness is reduced at night. The wipers would also sometimes work incorrectly even though the dial is at maximum sensitivity.
2- Oil leaks
Many owners of the 2007-2015 RX 350 models have complained that their engine leaks oil when they drive.
Drivers of affected model years have also reported hearing clicking noises from their engines due to a ruptured intelligent variable valve timing (VVT-i) oil line. This faulty part can also trigger the low engine oil level message and oil pressure warning lights . If not fixed, it can lead to complete engine failure due to lack of oil.
Replacing an oil line typically costs between $20 and $85, plus labor costs.
3- Wandering address
Some 2015 RX 350 owners have complained about an errant steering wheel. Uneven tires or tire pressure, loose steering gear or linkage, suspension problems, excessive toe-in and binding of the steering gear can all cause this problem .
4- Airbag warning light illuminated
An illuminated Supplemental Restraint System (SRS) warning light has been a common problem found on many 2007-2010 and 2013-2014 RX 350s.
Owners of affected model years have reported retrieving error codes B0111 and B0116, which may suggest a depleted airbag backup battery, faulty sensors, damaged airbag clock springs, or a wet airbag module.
If you suspect your vehicle has a similar problem, it’s best to have it checked out by a licensed mechanic for a proper diagnosis.
5- Malfunction of the infotainment system
Owners of some 2007, 2010, and 2014 RX 350s have complained of malfunctioning radio, Bluetooth functions, and the navigation screen . Fortunately, these problems don’t always require part replacement to fix. Checking for the latest software updates usually resolves these issues.
6- Problems with the air conditioning
Owners of some 2007-2013 RX 350s have complained of seeing an AC error message on their screens and that their AC units are not blowing cool air. There have also been reports of air conditioning units running intermittently due to a faulty A/C amplifier .
7- Transmission failure
Transmission failure has been a common complaint among 2013 RX 350 owners. Some have reported that their SUV showed signs of hesitation before losing power a few days later. This can be due to low or contaminated transmission fluid, bad bearings, or faulty control modules.
8- Problems with the camshaft oil control valves
Faults related to the variable valve timing (VVT) system have caused many 2007-2008 and 2012 RX 350s to have their AWD, traction control and check engine lights illuminated.
A faulty camshaft timing oil control valve has also caused affected vehicles to store OBD codes P0014 and P0012. A new oil control valve can cost anywhere from $40 to $120, plus labor costs.
9- Rattle of the doors
Many owners of the 2010 RX 350 redesign have complained that their front doors rattle while driving on the freeway. Some have reported that their doors came loose, creating a safety hazard for the driver and passengers . Loose nuts and bolts, misaligned doors, worn window regulators, and loose windows can all cause this problem.
10- Engine failures
There have been reports of some 2009 Lexus RX 350s having misfiring engines. Owners of the affected models reported that their SUVs broke down without any warning despite maintaining their vehicle’s maintenance schedule. Factors that can cause engine failure include overheating, oil leaks, knocking, and inadequate lubrication.
11- Delay in change
Shift lag has been a recurring complaint and one of the common Lexus RX 350 failures among 2008 model year owners. Shift lag is typically caused by valves sticking to the valve body , throttle solenoids, faulty shifters and damaged batteries.
Keep in mind that, like other vehicles, the Lexus RX 350 is bound to develop problems as the mileage accumulates. So you must be aware of the most common problems of the model so that yours continues to work for a long time.
It’s also a good idea to be aware of your RX 350’s repair and maintenance schedules to make sure all of its parts are working as they should.