Check out our top sponsors:

  • Bitcoin Affiliate Program. Earn 5% to 70% commissions
  • Post Your Business Here
  • Complete list of sponsors

Search this Forum:

Auto Finance Made Easy! Get Approved Today.

Used Cars for sale - Used Trucks for sale [4001427369] Buy Used Cars

Check engine light and traction off light on

- Lexus-ES 300Page 1Page 2Page 3Page 4

This forum post has messages dated from 01/16/09 through 03/21/13, please be sure to read all the messages. If you feel it is old or outdated, please follow up with a question or comment and someone may be able to update it, or reply with newer information if you have it.

07/11/10 11:20

My wife and I are on a road trip to Yellowstone. About 200 miles out, the trac light and engine light came on. I got to the hotel, checked this thread, went out this morning and cleaned the battery terminal (positive side) which took a minute or so, re-connected and Presto! Problem solved!

Now I don't kiss guys, but Chris, if you were here right now I'd kiss ya!

07/14/10 09:37

to diagnose these problems, go to autozone and purchase actron obd 2 pocket scanner. cost 49 to 59 dollars, easy to use, has instruction book with code numbers. can erase codes with flick of button. also for 25 bucks u can get a repair manual for your specific vehicle
07/20/10 10:34

1999 Lexus; second owner. Previous owner kept the car immaculate. Both lights came on within days of each other. Skeptically, certain that my problem would be no easy one to solve, I followed #10 above. It took five minutes and upon finishing, both lights went off. Wow! So easy.
09/01/10 20:53
Derek Miller




09/04/10 01:41
Andrew pennicot

pls help my ckeck engine light came on same time as my traction off light>>i Replace the gas cap still same thing what could be the problem..??>>2000 lexus, ES 300(truck)>>ASAP>>thx
09/06/10 15:40
james ko

I just reslove the same problem for my 1999 lexus 300 by doing the same procedue as explaind at REPLY #10.

Resetting computer system by disconnectiong battery!

Thanks you so much REPLY #10 and others.

09/06/10 16:10
James Ko

My problems come back again after 5 min test driving.
09/13/10 20:47

Yeah.. disconnecting the battery only "masks" the problem. If there is indeed a problem, within a few drive cycles the lights will come back.
09/16/10 20:37
David Bolin

Amazing same issue...engine light and trac light on. I had two different machanics look at it and they both said the computer was returning a "lean" code. One of the guys worked on the car for two days trying to figure out what was wrong and found that everything was up to spec. I had a new battery put in and they went off but came on a few days later. Car runs great with 140, 000+ miles on it so I just not going to worry about it!!!!!!! But I will try the gas cap trick...
09/19/10 22:04
Jean-claude Royer

Got same issue two days ago on my Lexus ES300. Both lights came on, not blinking but steady on. I will reset computer by disconnecting the battery and clean the gas cap (never know). If I find something will post it.
09/24/10 11:58

My 1999 ES300 started running rough at a stop light. When I began to accelerate, both the check engine and trac lights came on. The car would not shift into over drive.

I went to NAPA and they diagnosed it for free, the result was a code of P0301, #1 cylinder misfire. The problem appeared to me to be either the spark plug or the ignition coil for that cylinder. Since it came on so suddenly, I assumed it was the coil and replaced it ($98). I disconnected the battery for a minute to reset the fault codes and have had no problems since.

Cylinders are numbered this way; against the firewall, passenger side is #1, center back (firewall) is #3, Driver side against the firewall is #5.

Passenger side, front, near the oil dipstick is #2, center front is #4, and the driver side front near the transmission dipstick is #6.

I hope this helps, some of these coils are hard to get to.

10/15/10 14:04
John A.

I also have a '99 ES300 with check engine and track off lights on. But here's the deal. I tried the same fix as #10 above when my Lexus "only" had 157K on it. The fixed worked for about 200 miles. Since then my lights have stayed on continuously...but I now have 247K on it, get about 26mpg in the city and 29mpg on the highway and it runs like a top. So ignore the lights and enjoy your Lexus for another 100K.

10/18/10 03:34

thank you caesar #5 your diagnoses was the accurate disconnecting the battery cable it only causes the problem to temporarily go replacing the oil control valves the problem is solved.177, ooo miles and runs perfect.
10/20/10 09:21

I have the same situation with the Trac off light and the engine light, however my sons car also hesitates at about 30-40 mph. At times it rides fine, anyone have similar problems that had success solving the issure? Thanks
10/20/10 14:19
Mr. Ho

Thanks to Matt at Reply#35. The ignition coil was the exact problem. My 1999 ES300's symptom was 'Check Engine' light blinking, 'Trac' light on, and engine ran very rough.

If your engine is not rough, then ignition coil is likely NOT your problem. You may want to try Chris's Reply#10.

Changing the ignition coil is not complicated. It requires only disconnecting the battery, disconnecting the electric connector to the ignition coil, and the removal of 1 screw that attach the ignition coil to the engine block. (Assuming you have already removed the Lexus cosmetic gigantic plastic cover on top of the engine block. I threw away that cover afterward.) There are 6 ignition coils, my Actron Automobile Diagnostic Scanner ($99) helped me to locate which coil is bad. The error code was P0301. The coil is $83 for non-Toyota part. It is $130 for Toyota genuine part.

I changed the coil in about 1 hour.

Special thanks to Matt!! Matt, you rock!


10/26/10 00:50

I have the same problem Code p0301 misfire on cylinder 1 detected. I replaced the coil saturday and the problem instantly went away, but after about 200 miles the check engine light(flashing) and trac light came back on. can anyone help??? I'm stuck 2 hours away from home!!!
10/27/10 11:42

I have a 2000 es300, check engine light with codes po325, po171 & trac off light were set. The transmission will not go into overdrive when the codes set.

I changed the knock sensors and harness to fix code po325. Now I still have po171 and trac light coming on with transmission shifting problems after the code sets.

The car runs great while the check engine light is off and still runs good once light is set other than transmission issues.

I have changed the Mass Air Flow sensor, but first I cleaned it. I have done a smoke test for vacuum leaks with none found. I do not think the o2 sensor is bad because there is no code relative to it. Usually when a mass air flow is bad it sets a po171 & po174 for both banks. It seems to be only bank 1.

I really could use a little help with this if anyone has a suggestion.

11/08/10 11:53

I have a 2000 es300, check engine light and trac off light are on. The transmission will not go into overdrive.

I changed the knock sensors. I still have and engine light trac light coming on with transmission shifting problems.

The car runs great while but still will not shift into passing gear.

I have changed the Mass Air Flow sensor, I have done a smoke test for vacuum leaks with none found.

I really could use a some help with this if anyone has a suggestion. I have had it to two mechanics.


11/08/10 15:15
Grace Atwood

I too have this problem. The lights came on this Saturday and the engine was idling very rough--even kinds of smells burning. My husband stopped the car and checked oil and other fluids and they were fine.

Halfway home, everything seemed normal but the lights were still on. Yesterday, lights were on, and drove a few miles to the grocery store and everything was fine.

This morning, driving to work, the lights were off. Stopped at a stop light, then engine started running rough again, the lights came on and the Check Engine light began flashing until I accelerated.

Now I have to drive the car home. I have a mechanic coming to my house tonight to check it out, but I'd like to save as much money as possible by giving him a head start of potential problems.

Has anyone had this problem, with the car running very rough?

11/14/10 18:52

I have a 1999 ES 300 with 190K miles. It has been a fantastic car. Few months back, however, the check engine light came on as well as the trac off light. The CEL (check engine light) blinks while the TRAC OFF stays solid.

The car is still driveable, but is very sluggish and of course will not shift into the higher gear, so going over 50mph you are at very high rpm. Sometimes, if from a stop, you have almost no pickup at all and it will take a good solid 20 seconds to get to 25 miles per hour. It is dangerous in busy streets. Lately, it seems as though it has a semi-hard time starting and sometimes the battery is dead (and the battery was just replaced with a repaired battery, although this could simply be a bad battery and not correlated to the actual issue I am posting about).

I took the car to a mechanic shop that said that the front 3 spark plugs are fuel fouled and cylinder 2 ignition coil needs to be replaced. They of course wanted to replace all six ignition coils ($100+ each) and all six spark plugs. I told them that i'll simply replace the front 3 spark plugs and the number 2 ignition coil myself.

So I did just that. I replaced the front three spark plugs, which were recently replaced less than 1000 miles ago when this issue first came about. I also replaced the front passenger side ignition coil, which is #2. I drove the car around for about 10 minutes and it worked fairly well. The trac off light was off and the check engline light would be off for about 2 minutes and then come on for about 30 seconds and then off again for 2 minutes. I didn't have any pickup issues and it would idle smoothly. I thought that I fixed the problem.

However, since the check engine light was still coming off and on I decided to go to Autozone to get it tested. This was the next day and I turn on the car and i instantly know that it is back into its "bad state" with the check engine light constantly blinking and the trac off light lit. Very sluggish and will not go into the higher gears and very shakey and low rpm idle. What in the world changed from one day to the next while the car was in the garage?

I went to autozone which gave me the error codes:

P300 - random cylinder misfire detected

P302 - cylinder 2 misfire detected

P303 - cylinder 3 misfire detected

P304 - cylinder 4 misfire detected

Keep in mind that I didn't drive the car more than 40 miles after replacing the front 3 spark plugs and #2 ignition coil. However, look at the code P302, it says cylinder 2 misfire detected. How could that be if I replaced the spark plug and ignition coil for #2?

I think that this is something more than spark plugs and ignition coils, although I don't have the expertise to know. Autozone recommended I put in some ignition cleaner into the gas tank for $5 which I have done but don't expect it to fix the issue. Reading here on the forum someone stated to clean the gas cap and unplug the battery which will reset the cel, but again, something is telling me that this won't permanently fix the issue.

Can someone out there that knows these cars well help me cross the road into a solution? The car has been absolutely fantastic and I want it to last about 20k more miles (i just want to get over 200k miles!)

11/19/10 07:08

2000 Lexus ES 300--175K miles-Code Problem P1354--( Ck. Eng Light/ Track Off Light stays ON }.

--I have read all the comments in this forum but nobody was clear as to how to fix this problem permantally or to identify what Engine Part to replace.

This car has been a Great Investment and I desire to keep it as a classic model.

Please reply to my e-mail address ( with your information/situation.

Thank You!

11/21/10 19:59

we have a 1993 lexus es 300 the check engine light comes on when the engine gets warm & the engine revs to about 2000 rpm's

when you turn the engine off the & restart the engine the check engine light is off.. intel the rpm's get to 2000. can any one help.. thomas.

11/28/10 20:45

My 2000 Lexus ES 300 had the trac light and check engine light on. The car started burning alot of gas and running very rough on the lower gears. So I finally had a local shop perform a diagnostic check on the car. They told me coils #1 and #3 were bad. So I purchased coils and replace the bad ones. After replacing the coils the car won't start. The engine cranks over but the car never starts. I've noticed that the check engine and O/D lights are on. The lights will stay on even if I take the keys out of the ignition. Any thoughts.
12/03/10 05:35

i have the exact same issues as forumsviewer. To be frank, my 1999 es 300 has 250k so I"m not anxious to throw alot of money into consider that I've been driving with these conditions for the past 6 months. I've had so many bad experiences with mechanics that I'm hesitant to get burned again. Other then very bad gas mileage with the car not shifting into overdrive I'm not sure if I'm doing any futher damage and the engine light and trac light on are the least of my concerns. It seeams to be such a widespread problem and it's not effecting the peformance of the car. Any feedback would be helpful. If I'm wrong I want to know.
12/07/10 18:04

Had the same problem 2 times. First time was 2 mos after got car 5 years ago. I did the battery disconnect/reconnect; only worked for a few days at a time. Finally took it to Lexus dealer; sold me a new gas cap which resolved issue until a couple months ago Found this forum; I cleaned gas cap and battery posts like Replies 3, 10 & 12. Similar to #3, however, when I re-connected the battery, it was dead. AutoZone put in a new one, and everything has been good since then (1 month, 1000 miles ago). I have to wonder if there's a connection between a weak battery and this problem. Keeping fingers crossed for now.
Reply options
Share your opinions, advice, questions or comments on this post.
Be Heard: Forum reply options:

We encourage everyone to share their opinions, comments, thoughts and information, please consider sharing...

We would like to thanks all those who have participated in our community. All the great information available on our sites is because a member of our community took the time to share it. Thank you!

  • Reply to this Forum post (opens small window)
  • Social Networking

    Share this with your friends on facebook, twitter and Google+

    Social sharing because it feels good

    Please share this page on your favorite social networks:

    Please like our facebook page for Cars for Sale:

    Page 1Page 2Page 3Page 4

    Lexus Forum Topics

    Lexus ES 250 ForumLexus ES 300 ForumLexus GS 300 ForumLexus GS 400 ForumLexus GS 430 ForumLexus IS 300 ForumLexus LS 400 ForumLexus LS 430 ForumLexus LX 450 ForumLexus LX 470 ForumLexus Other ForumLexus RX 300 ForumLexus SC 300 ForumLexus SC 400 ForumLexus SC 430 Forum
    Top Searches: • p1354 lexus es300 • 2000 lexus es300 code p1354 • lexus es300 problems • 2000 lexus es300 p1354 • 1999 lexus es300 code p1354 • lexus es300 p1354 • 1999 lexus es300 changed battery car still will not start • 2000 lexus es300 p0325 • o2 sensor replaced on lexus is 300 and light will not reset • disconnecting lexus battery to remove code lights • lexus es300 check engine light trac off light what causes code p1354 • lexus engine light codes • 2000 lexus es300 easy to replace hard knock sensor • lexus 200 es300 check battery light • ignition coil in lexus forums • lexus es300 p1354 code • 2000 lexus es300 error code p0302 cylinder 2 • p o171 on a 2000 lexus es 300 • how to set codes after battery change on lexus es300 • lexus es300 code p1354 • lexus es300 shifting problem • how to read lexus es300 error codes • where is the 6 cylinder on a es300 • car hesitates then work fine after battery disconnect • lexus es 300 rpm gear change • actron p1354 • 1999 lexus gs400 p1354 • 1999 lexus es300 high rpm • 1999 lexus es300 p0325 • 1993 lexus es300 check engine light • check engine code 430 on lexus es300 • 2000 lexus es300 po171 •

    Important information.

    This page is part of a social network. People may choose to participate here for personal, commercial or other reasons. Please keep in mind that posts or other information here may be: 1) advertisements and not personal opinions, and 2) that any products or services mentioned here may not work exactly as the promoter describes or promises.

    Please verify all claims and use an escrow service for any signficiant purchases.

    Used Cars for Sale. Sell your car. Buy a used car. Buy a new car. Buy a car. Sell a car. Autos for sale. Want Ads. Car Parts. Automotive Accessories.
    All ads on Classifieds1000 are the responsiblity of the posters; keep in mind, anyone can post anything!

    Copyright (c) 2005-2014 GLR Sales LLC.


    Privacy PolicyDMCA PolicyWrite for us • -- WelcomeSitemap
    Lexus ES 300 'Check engine light and traction off light on'