Hello Paul, thank you for the educational car repair tips. I own a Toyota Harrier 2005 model. I noticed recently that every time I start the car after parking it overnight I hear a strange noise like a quiet motor under the steering area. This noise goes on for about 10 seconds and goes silent. My mechanics cannot figure it out. What is your take? Imelda Matovu.
Hello Imelda, I have come across two cases of Toyota Harrier exhibiting the same symptomatic noise. My hunch is that it is the AC vent flap motor that is restricted, loose or failing. This motor is located next to the left leg kick panel along the side panel. This motor ordinarily runs a cycle to adjust AC vent flaps every time you start your car.
Normally, the cycle lasts a few seconds and the vent flap motor should stop. However, in cases where the motor sticks or has mechanical damage it will make a loud noise as it runs.
In other cases where the flap motor linkage arms are broken it will continue running longer than usual until it times out. Either way, a good technician needs to get to this flap motor and inspect it to consider repair or replacement.