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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
:pissed: :confused: So I drove the IS in the snow for the first time on Tuesday on my way to work, it was only 4-5 inches and a maybe 3-4 miles. I noticed a god-awful grinding noise when I started to drove home that night from work. I work at about 700 feet elevation and the snow accumulation was above 500 feet so it's not like I was mashing down the freeway in 5 inches of snow. Anyway, when I got hame and checked under the car my driver side skidplate, directly under the drivers seat, was torn and hanging down grinding the pavement obviously torn away by the snow.

My issues are:
Why and how the hell did the skidplate tear away like that so easliy and has this happened to anybody else?
How can a piece of plastic cost $280 to replace (per my local stealership), they didn't have one in stock so they just cut the torn piece and reattached what was left (cost $60) and told me I should replace it ASAP.
Do I really need to replace the skidplate? Is it covering anything critical or will affect the drivability, noise of the car?

Any feedback will be appreciated greatly!!
 

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Yea, mine is all messed up also. I didnt know it was that $$$$$ for a new one. I think it affects the aerodynamics of the car and also road noise. I wish they made a metal one or something.
 

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This was covered early on under a "campaign" by Lexus in 2001's. There was no official recall or TSB. I believe the panel was the one on the passenger side, covering the 02 sensor harness for the Lexus warranty repair.

See Car and Driver review/ second paragraph
Long-Term Test: Lexus IS300 - - Car and Driver - March 2002

I had a letter for this, but it may have only applied to Canada.

Digger08
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Should the dealership have replaced this under the warranty??

The Car & Driver acticle stated that Lexus replaced theirs under the warranty and it was eventually recalled on the '01 IS. There's no way the panel should have pulled off like this. I think I'm going to give my stealership a call.

Thanks Digger08.
 

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He has an '04. It's not a "malfunction".... Just standard wear and tear will do that to the panel given the wrong conditions. You obviously dragged it on something which caught it the wrong way and pulled it down. Pay up...it's the cost of incidentals operating a car.

It's like getting a nail in your tire and assuming Lexus will pay for it under warranty. Although Lexus may be kind enough to cover it as a one time courtesy if you get lucky.


And yes, you should probably replace it. Fuel line and brake lines are down there, albiet they are metal lines.
 
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^^ Agreeing with TeCK, you should replace it, but think of how many cars you've had without those plates underneath. Were they much noisier or break down much more? Less "driveability"? I think they are great and they do protect vital parts, and I would replace mine, but you don't have to do it TODAY.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
^^ Agreeing with TeCK, you should replace it, but think of how many cars you've had without those plates underneath. Were they much noisier or break down much more? Less "driveability"? I think they are great and they do protect vital parts, and I would replace mine, but you don't have to do it TODAY.
Point taken, I didn't buy a Lexus to cheap things out.

Hopefully I can find a used one around and avoid the $280 hit to my pocketbook.

Thanks for the feedback.
 

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^^ Or that, I think it would be easy to do. Get some sheet metal, cut to size, drill holes and voilà.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
If only I were savvy enough to fabricate one form metal. I think pick-and-pull is going to be my best bet.
 

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also check online at dealer stores such as l-tunedparts for OEM stuff. it's usually way less than what you would pay by walking into your local dealership.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
also check online at dealer stores such as l-tunedparts for OEM stuff. it's usually way less than what you would pay by walking into your local dealership.
Good idea, I'd rather replace it with a new part than one from the junkyard.

Can anyone help me figure out the part number associated with the underbody panel underneth the driver side?
 

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C-One I believe makes an aluminum one...lemme browse the interwebnets....
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Good find but that looks like it's the panel for under the engine comartment on the front of the car. The one I need is thinner and goes from directly under the driver back to the rear wheel. I could be mistaken but I know the piece they cut off was much thinner.

Please correct me if I'm wrong. And thank for the effort. +Rep!
 

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I have no idea lol, I would have to see which panel youre talking about, I only get under mine to change oil and even at that I havnt paid attention to the other crap haha
 

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Its not a "SKID PLATE" - dont think that it is or acts like one. it's simply a plastic cover that is held on my plastic clips and screws. I would replace it if you do a lot of snow driving.
 

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^^^ Lexus did and you prob should too since it is a premium feature. Underbody aerodynamics plays a large in drag as well as lift. Stock is best for the underbody...I wouldn't go metal. Those panels are designed to deflect since they do encounter obstacles from time to time as you found out. Metal doesn't do that without damage..potentially damaging something else (like cutting a fuel/brake line, tire) while getting ripped apart.

I would suggest a used one.

The one you tore off is a narrow and long one. It runs along the frame rail and covers the fuel/brake lines. It's actually secured pretty well and it's leading edge is overlapped by the larger under engine cover. I'm actually surprised you were able to rip it off as I it's leading edge is well overlapped and secured. Was the back half of it dragging or the front edge?
 
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