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#4576800 - 11/17/17 08:01 AM 2013 Camry hood strut failure while the hood is up
windeye Offline


Registered: 02/26/09
Posts: 196
Loc: NY, USA
Car has been in service fro 4+ years, and registered about 90K miles. During the recent routine oil change, the gas charged hood lift support failed and the hood came crashing down. When the hood was opened, it stayed up, no sign of problem. The failure happened well into oil change, when I was under the car, and there was nothing in the engine bay. So I was lucky, extremely. No bodily damage nor property damage. I then assessed the situation, due to the way the struts are placed, when the struts failed, the hood would have a free fall from greater then 45-deg, which would generate a significant amount of force.

I am thinking, this has to happen in the past to a lot of people. I sure am not the 1st one experiencing this. But this is a huge safety hazard. I am looking for a fail safe solution even when I replace the failed struts with new ones. Any thoughts?
_________________________
2000 Mazda MPV LX, 192,500 miles
2007 Mazda 3 Touring, 105,000 miles
2013 Toyota Camry XLE, 85,000 miles

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#4576808 - 11/17/17 08:13 AM Re: 2013 Camry hood strut failure while the hood is up [Re: windeye]
Char Baby Offline


Registered: 05/25/05
Posts: 9751
Loc: ROCHESTER, NY
Definitely replace the hood struts with the best you can find. Otherwise:

Use a pair of vise-grips clamped to one of the struts. However, this may mar the chrome finish of the strut shaft and cause possible early failure of the strut. My BIL did this for years on his Camry and never ever replaced the hood struts. He just kept a pair in the car.

Also, an old broom handle cut to length of your Camry's hood opening. Keep it too in the car/trunk/somewhere.

OR...keep the hood closed but, unlatched during the OCI or any other repairs while under the car and lift the hood as needed.


Edited by Char Baby (11/17/17 08:26 AM)
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#4576814 - 11/17/17 08:16 AM Re: 2013 Camry hood strut failure while the hood is up [Re: windeye]
bullwinkle Online   confused


Registered: 10/09/04
Posts: 7480
Loc: Cincinnati, OH, USA
The Ram in my sig is showing signs that this could happen, especially in winter-the struts are just strong enough to barely hold up the hood. I look a little stupid when I stuff a broom in to hold it up if I need to work under the hood, but I figure it beats a concussion or serious head injury!
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#4576817 - 11/17/17 08:20 AM Re: 2013 Camry hood strut failure while the hood is up [Re: windeye]
Chris Meutsch Offline


Registered: 02/27/06
Posts: 2631
Loc: Cincinnati
I just replaced the struts on my Pilot's rear tailgate yesterday. It would have crushed anyone that got caught in the way. Works better than new now.
Fix the struts (do both) and if still worried, use a broom handle.
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#4576826 - 11/17/17 08:25 AM Re: 2013 Camry hood strut failure while the hood is up [Re: Chris Meutsch]
windeye Offline


Registered: 02/26/09
Posts: 196
Loc: NY, USA
new struts are on the way, and will be in this weekend. Problem I have is that there can be no signs of failure that is what bothers me. If it fails before I lift the hood, I would know what's going on. I'd like to find a way to add a prop rod just for a failsafe measure... any ideas?
_________________________
2000 Mazda MPV LX, 192,500 miles
2007 Mazda 3 Touring, 105,000 miles
2013 Toyota Camry XLE, 85,000 miles

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#4576828 - 11/17/17 08:28 AM Re: 2013 Camry hood strut failure while the hood is up [Re: windeye]
Char Baby Offline


Registered: 05/25/05
Posts: 9751
Loc: ROCHESTER, NY
You could probably create a prop rod that is better than any that you could buy/find. OR, go to a bone yard and try use something from another vehicle.


Edited by Char Baby (11/17/17 08:28 AM)
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#4576830 - 11/17/17 08:29 AM Re: 2013 Camry hood strut failure while the hood is up [Re: windeye]
THafeez Offline


Registered: 08/15/16
Posts: 651
Loc: New Jersey
Same thing happened to me on my Solara. Only one strut. I was getting a jump from someone and we barely cleared it before the hood came crashing down. I use a pair of vise grips now without issue.
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2004 Toyota Solara SE 2.4 2AZFE
175,000 miles
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#4576837 - 11/17/17 08:35 AM Re: 2013 Camry hood strut failure while the hood is up [Re: windeye]
E150GT Online   content


Registered: 03/11/12
Posts: 1039
Loc: San Antonio, TX
I consider hood struts a safety hazard. The only close call with a hood Iíve had in on a car with struts. The rest have all been props and ever an issue.
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1984 Mercedes-Benz 300SD - 100k
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#4576838 - 11/17/17 08:36 AM Re: 2013 Camry hood strut failure while the hood is up [Re: windeye]
CincyDavid Offline


Registered: 03/03/16
Posts: 663
Loc: Cincinnati, OH USA
I make a point of replacing hood struts, even on [censored] old cars...I had several BMW 528e sedans over the years, and ALL of them needed new struts. They were something like $25 a pair, but it's one of those things that makes me feel like the car is less of a beater if they work right, as well as a safety issue. It's the same thought process as putting new tires on an old car...makes it feel like a well-loved classic, not an old turd.

If all else fails, a broomstick or piece of 2x4 works too, just not as elegant.
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#4576851 - 11/17/17 08:47 AM Re: 2013 Camry hood strut failure while the hood is up [Re: windeye]
Rick in PA Offline


Registered: 01/04/03
Posts: 3197
Loc: Southeastern, PA
I got about 15 years of good service out of the OEM rear hatch gas springs on my PT Cruiser. When they failed, it was gradual. In cold weather the hatch needed to be encouraged up and then would drift down a bit, but not slam shut.

I purchased a pair of StrongArm replacement support struts thru Amazon. The price wasn't too bad. They were made in the USA. They seem to work well.
_________________________
A wise man told me:
"Heat is your friend." and "Any oil is better than no oil."

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#4576852 - 11/17/17 08:48 AM Re: 2013 Camry hood strut failure while the hood is up [Re: windeye]
Sayjac Offline


Registered: 10/13/08
Posts: 12098
Loc: The Old North State
Glad you're ok and correct, you are lucky your head not under the hood.

Next door neighbor (older gentleman) has an old Chrysler LHS that had worn out struts. He was using a stick of some sort to hold hood up when it slipped, hit his head hard. At first thought he was ok then later started acting strangely. Rushed to hospital with head injury. Don't think it got as bad as a subdural hematoma, but he wasn't right for quite some time.

Replace the struts asap, and use some type of a prop stick or other method as back up.

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#4576875 - 11/17/17 09:08 AM Re: 2013 Camry hood strut failure while the hood is up [Re: Sayjac]
windeye Offline


Registered: 02/26/09
Posts: 196
Loc: NY, USA
Oh man, that's bad for your neighbor. I guess professional car technicians would see this more often... wonder how they stay safe... maybe they use a vise clamping on the strut shaft as well. That's a good idea for a failed strut; not so for a good one.


Edited by windeye (11/17/17 09:15 AM)
_________________________
2000 Mazda MPV LX, 192,500 miles
2007 Mazda 3 Touring, 105,000 miles
2013 Toyota Camry XLE, 85,000 miles

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#4576881 - 11/17/17 09:14 AM Re: 2013 Camry hood strut failure while the hood is up [Re: windeye]
khittner Offline


Registered: 07/13/12
Posts: 253
Loc: Michigan
I replaced the hood struts on my '02 Camry about a year ago because they really weren't lifting the hood with the vigor of the ones on my '10 Sonata. The difference in the hood's lifting ease was quite significant; before, I had to "help" the struts get the Camry's hood up; after, I could hit the release latch, lift just a couple of inches, and could then get out of the way while the lifting struts did their thing. Pretty dramatic difference. Put on new hood struts, and don't worry about it until/unless they get tired again.

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#4576895 - 11/17/17 09:30 AM Re: 2013 Camry hood strut failure while the hood is up [Re: windeye]
BJD78 Offline


Registered: 08/05/17
Posts: 425
Loc: Nebraska
Used to drive a 94 Camry and though the engine and trans were like kryptonite, the hood struts and window motors were pathetic failures. Owned the car for about 7 years and probably never went 2 years without having to replace a hood strut or a window motor. I never trusted those hood struts and always used a 2x4 or something similar as a back up when ever i worked under the hood.
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2010 Forester:122K
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OCI 5K to 7K using the cheapest dino oil I can buy,usually NAPA or TSC Travelers oil.

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#4576914 - 11/17/17 09:45 AM Re: 2013 Camry hood strut failure while the hood is up [Re: windeye]
AdamZ Offline


Registered: 04/06/17
Posts: 44
Loc: Ontario, Canada
I had it fall on me when working on my parents 05 Maxima. Vice grips after that... My 04 Golf the factory one is still fine.

My 94 Pathfinder has the original hatch struts and they still work great. The 95 ones on the other hand, require the vice grip treatment.
_________________________
94 Nissan Pathfinder 443k km M1 0w40
95 Nissan Pathfinder 180k km PYB 5w30
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