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"Lot Rot" on 2012 CPO RX350? - Help Needed!

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Old 02-28-15, 06:38 PM   #1
raylor
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Default "Lot Rot" on 2012 CPO RX350? - Help Needed!

Been reading the forum for a while to research the RX350 and this is my first post. I would greatly appreciate your expert opinions!

Went in for my second test drive on a CPO 2012 RX350 with about 30,000 miles with the intent to buy today. No issues noted the first test drive but today I noticed pretty severe shaking of the steering wheel when applying the brakes. This happened after about 20 minutes of combined highway, stop and go, and parking lot driving. The shaking of the steering wheel and overall shimmying - felt by passengers in the front and back seat that were with me - was worse the faster I was going when I applied the brake. The shaking occurred only when braking.

I obviously told the salesman and he had one of their mechanics come for another ride with us. He felt that it was "lot rot". The vehicle has been in the lot for almost 3 months of wet winter weather with minimal driving. He believes that a rotor resurfacing will definitely fix the problem. I got a good deal since it was the end of the month and signed a conditional contract to buy the vehicle only if the vehicle meets my expectations after servicing on Monday. This is in writing. We agreed to tear up the contract if the vehicle is still shaking or is not up to my standards.

Does the "lot rot" explanation make sense? Could it be another problem that jumps to mind? Is there anything else I should look for? Should I get a mechanic to take a look? Does CPO provide protection if this does not happen on extensive driving on Monday but happens in the future? I intend to drive the vehicle for at least an hour on Monday under all kinds of conditions.

The VIN is xxx and the CarFax checked out clean (1 owner on Personal Lease) as did the service records (serviced at the dealership) that the dealer showed me.

Thanks for your advice!
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Last edited by Cruiter; 02-28-15 at 08:25 PM..
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Old 02-28-15, 07:23 PM   #2
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Turning the rotors indeed sounds likely to fix the problem, but I don't buy the explanation of "lot rot" as the suggested cause. A three year old vehicle with 30 K miles isn't the kind of vehicle that develops "lot rot". I have always heard that term applied to tired older vehicles that have been sitting around for more than just a few months. I'm sure they can find the solution but throwing the term "lot rot" out there was just done to impress you IMHO. I would be willing to bet the problem existed when they took the vehicle in.

For what it's worth, my 2004 RX required the same repair at about 20K miles and I really don't know why. I am never very hard on the brakes and don't tow anything. They were warped nonetheless, but I never had another problem so I wouldn't be concerned about the repair.
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Old 02-28-15, 08:26 PM   #3
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i agree with the above person. Have the tech resurface the rotors then drive it again before you buy it
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Old 02-28-15, 08:45 PM   #4
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turning brake rotors or resurfacing is not my cup of tea, if CPO purchase I would demand for new brake rotors. just me.
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Old 02-28-15, 10:15 PM   #5
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If this car is CPO, you would think they would have looked at the brakes before putting it up for sale.
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Old 02-28-15, 10:49 PM   #6
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I agree, I am sure brakes are on the checklist for certifying the car. That does seem strange. I didn't even think about that.

I'm not sure demanding new rotors is really necessary. It is quite common to turn them on a lathe to fix this type of problem and if they had done their proper diligence during the CPO process, they would have already done this and you wouldn't be any the wiser. A CPO car isn't a new car so I'm not sure if it is fair to expect all new hardware.
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Old 03-01-15, 05:31 AM   #7
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Turning Rotors is something that was much more common years ago. Replacement is generally the solution nowadays. My understanding is that rotors are not as thick anymore when brand new to save weight.

In my experience, turned rotors never last as long as a new rotor.
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Old 03-01-15, 07:34 AM   #8
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That certainly makes sense. There is no denying that turning results in thinner rotors which are more likely to develop the problem again. My only personal experience was with the 04 RX and my dealer turned them. I just assumed that was the norm after watching my dad doing brake repairs that way many times (admittedly a few years ago...). All things being equal, new would certainly be preferred.
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Old 03-01-15, 09:14 AM   #9
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The lot rot claim is garbage, but as others have said what you are feeling is the brakes. Turning the rotors and possibly replacing the pads will fix it. Turning the rotors is the cheaper alternative to replacing them, but yes replacing them is best and depending on how thin they are already you can't shave more off. Up to you if you want to argue with the dealer and get them to put in new ones to make the sale. Everything is negotiable no matter what they say at first.
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Old 03-01-15, 11:39 AM   #10
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Thanks for the responses. This brake issue was really bothering me, but you have helped put my mind at ease that they should be able to fix it. Although I have to say it doesn't give me a ton of confidence in the CPO process.

I am going to ask the sales manager and my sales associate to replace the rotors to complete the sale. Does anyone have an idea on the relative cost between turning the rotors and replacing them? It sounds like turning them would increase the likelihood of recurrence.
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Old 03-01-15, 01:20 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vince22 View Post
turning brake rotors or resurfacing is not my cup of tea, if CPO purchase I would demand for new brake rotors. just me.
I retired after 30 years with a brake manufacturer - and would hold out for new pads and rotors (instead of resurfacing the existing ones - provided that is the ultimate diagnosis), else you're likely to be looking at new brakes sooner than you'd like.
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Old 03-01-15, 01:28 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by raylor View Post
Thanks for the responses. This brake issue was really bothering me, but you have helped put my mind at ease that they should be able to fix it. Although I have to say it doesn't give me a ton of confidence in the CPO process.

I am going to ask the sales manager and my sales associate to replace the rotors to complete the sale. Does anyone have an idea on the relative cost between turning the rotors and replacing them? It sounds like turning them would increase the likelihood of recurrence.
I see you are in MA. I will be buying a CPO once this horrific winter is over so if you do not mind could you list or IM me the dealer name? To me this is definitely something that should have been found in the CPO process so I may to try to avoid them if I can find what I want at another dealer.

Thx
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Old 03-01-15, 01:38 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NateJG View Post
I retired after 30 years with a brake manufacturer - and would hold out for new pads and rotors (instead of resurfacing the existing ones - provided that is the ultimate diagnosis), else you're likely to be looking at new brakes sooner than you'd like.
when you say "hold out", do you mean demand new pads and rotors or cancel the contract to buy?

the sales manager put in writing that the shaking/shimmying/rotors will be to my satisfaction or the contract is null and void. i didn't specify "brakes" to my satisfaction, as i wasn't sure that was the problem on the second test drive.
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Old 03-01-15, 02:40 PM   #14
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I wouldn't sleep well suggesting that you kill the deal - especially since I'm diagnosing using second hand symptoms - and that you have assurance tat you will be satisfied.

A point of info is that they will want to get that car off their rack ASAP; and (assuming still that it is the rotors causing shimmy) it takes longer time (read: labor cost to them at $40/hr) to resurface rotors than it does to add nice new clean ones to the car - and that since your satisfaction is their promise - that you might suggest to them that you would be more satisfied knowing that the vehicle starts its new adoption process with factory specified rotors that won't heat/wear as fast as worn (shaved) rotors - and that by throwing in a new set of pads, they would show their commitment to ensuring that your confidence in Lexus is bolstered by their commitment to your sense of security.

Then pause and wait for them to blink.

Otherwise, they're in the service business - and unless you doubt their ability or sincerity, they'll likely do an acceptable job per CPO guidelines - and you'll be just fine.

You asked for opinions - mine was free - and may be about the same value.

Good luck. You'll be fine in any event.

Sorry, I wish I hadn't chimed in.
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Old 03-01-15, 02:40 PM
 
 
 
 
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