2022 Toyota Highlander Problems and Top Complaints – Is Your Car A Lemon?

Vibrating mirrors, faulty brakes, and various seat issues are among the top complaints received by the NHTSA from vehicle owners

Updated on Author: Brian Jones

The 2022 Toyota Highlander is a family SUV that is meant for everyday drives. The auto manufacturer wants people to “see where your limits take you” That’s a great idea, but owners are dealing with vibrating mirrors that impact their safety, faulty brakes, and seat issues that affect their children.

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Most Common Problems with the 2022 Toyota Highlander

Vibrating mirrors and faulty brakes are the most common problems that 2022 Toyota Highlander owners are complaining to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) about. Drivers find that the brakes don’t always function as they should, and crashes have been reported as a result of this.

Shattering sunroofs or moonroofs are another issue, and so are problematic seats, cracked windshields, and shattering windows. Additionally, there are complaints about airbags, the electrical system, the engine, forward collision avoidance, the fuel/propulsion system, lane departure, the powertrain, the structure of the SUV, tires, and vehicle speed control.

2022 Toyota Highlander Complaint Summary

Complaint CategoryNumber of Complaints
Service Brakes
21
21
Unknown Or Other
15
15
Structure:body
11
11
Visibility/wiper
7
7
Air Bags
6
6
Engine
6
6
Forward Collision Avoidance: Automatic Emergency Braking
5
5
Vehicle Speed Control
5
5
Electrical System
4
4
Fuel/propulsion System
4
4

Vibrating Mirrors

This problem relates to the side mirror on the driver’s side. The passenger-side mirror appears to be fine.

An owner of a 2022 Highlander from Ohio says that it makes her dizzy when trying to change lanes. This is because it causes blurred visibility. “Toyota has this same issue on their RAV4 model and there is actually a fix. They need to make the car safe and not have mirrors that shake while driving.”

That’s no surprise because the vibrating mirror problem appears to be something that has been recurring for several years.

A Georgia owner of a 2022 Highlander states that after reporting the problem to a local dealership, “I was told that both the dealership and Toyota were aware of the problem with the mirror but could do nothing to correct the issue.”

And yet, “I was told this issue goes back about two years starting with the 2020 year model. There are numerous posts on Toyota’s forum talking about this issue. This is not a one-off issue but is tied to ALL Toyota Highlanders. I’m reporting this issue because I believe it is a safety issue that needs to be corrected.”

An owner from New York reports, “When cruising on a highway at around 70 MPH my driver side mirror started shaking. The visibility through that mirror is getting worse. The left side mirror is fine, no issue with vibration.”

But it isn’t only at 70 that this happens. Other complaints state:

  • “Vibrating driver side mirrors at speeds (of between) 50-70 MPH on concrete or asphalt.”
  • “Driver side mirror vibrates above 20 mph which makes it harder to focus on the image, (which) can lead to accidents.”

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Faulty Brakes

Problems with the Highlander’s brakes are reported in several categories including Service Brakes, Electrical System, Forward Collision Avoidance, and Vehicle Speed Control. Owners describe different scenarios, but ultimately, there’s a major problem with the brakes of the 2022 Toyota Highlander.

Examples of Complaints

Here’s an example from an owner in Arizona who reports that multiple users of an online Toyota forum are experiencing the same problem.

“When coming to a stop, intermittently the brakes feel like they disengage for a moment before kicking back in and lunging me forward. The first time it happened I thought my foot had slipped off the brake pedal. When it happened again, I knew something was wrong and started noting when it happens, and the driving conditions. I have taken it into the dealer 4 times now, have opened a ticket with Toyota, and have been told since they can’t reproduce the problem there isn’t much they can do to fix it. The service manager did advise that a scan of my car revealed my ABS/skid kicked in at one of the times I noted, but that was it. This malfunction is typically at low speeds and when I apply the brake on a curve.”

An owner from Montana states that “While driving at a constant speed of approximately 45 mph the vehicle suddenly skidded sideways and launched to the right, causing us to nearly hit a guardrail. I dropped speed to 30 mph and this continued to occur at random for the next 10 miles until destination was reached.” While there was snow on the road, other vehicles passed at 50 mph plus without any issues. Then it happened again, this time at 15 mph causing the Highlander “to almost run into a parked car. This has occurred at random over the past two days. All instances occurred while driving at a constant speed, no brakes were being applied and while driving in a straight line.” Again, the dealership wasn’t able to help.

Brakes Blamed for Accidents

An owner from Maryland describes how faulty brakes resulted in a crash. While her partner was reversing out of a driveway, the vehicle independently surged backward up a hill as her partner applied the brake pedal.” The driver was able to change to Drive, which “sent the vehicle forward.” But it was only when the Highlander hit a tree that acceleration stopped. Fortunately, the driver wasn’t injured.

Faulty brakes also caused an owner from Texas to crash. “When parked for 15 to 20 minutes with the engine running, then moving forward, the brakes do not work. According to San Marcos Toyota, this is normal. (The) speed of (the) vehicle is less than 5 miles per hour, not brakes, and this caused a very minor rear-end collision. According to service, the brake booster shuts off.”

Brake Failure Linked to the Electrical System

Several complaints are listed under the Electrical System category. This is an excerpt from one of them.

An owner from Alabama was alarmed when “the entire dashboard warning system came on all the ADAS and messages saying braking failure to loss of control. This vehicle is not even three months old and is a platinum AWD vehicle fully loaded version.” The Toyota dealership wasn’t able to explain the reason. “This is dangerous and this vehicle going at 65 MPH and unable to stop is a real danger to the occupants and others.”

Problems with the Windshields, Windows, and Moonroofs

Shattered glass is a problem for many 2022 Highlander owners. For some, it’s windows or windshields, and for others, it’s the sunroof or moonroof.

An owner from Arizona describes how the driver’s side window shattered spontaneously while driving down a highway at 65 mph. “It sounded like a pressure explosion.” His wife was driving the vehicle and glass flew from the front to the rear of the vehicle. “Luckily my wife was wearing sunglasses. My daughters were in the rear with my youngest daughter’s eyes being protected by a book she was reading. Glass struck me on the passenger side on the left side of my face.”

An owner from North Carolina experienced a cracked windshield. On the driver-side windshield, there is an inside crack/defect that keeps spreading causing glare while driving… It appears to be in between the glass windshield.”

Sunroof/moonroof issues are all similar.

Driving on the interstate in California, an owner heard “ticking” from above “followed by a loud bang. Moonroof busted out and (the) glass shattered.”

“We were driving and heard a loud boom,” an owner from Oregon states. “After the initial shock we saw that the moonroof had shattered.”

Another complaint states that “the sunroof glass exploded unexpectedly. There was no impact on the sunroof that could have caused it to shatter.”

Problems with the Seats

Complaints show that seat problems are primarily a child safety issue.

An owner from California states that “The left rear seat on my 2022 Highlander doesn’t stay locked in the first 3 detents. You think it is locked but when you lean back in the seat it slides through the next couple of detents.” Strangely, a Toyota mechanic couldn’t find anything wrong with the seat. “I see this as a problem when using child safety seats. Parents could think the seat is safely locked in position until they get rear-ended and the seat slips through the next couple positions.”

The motivation for buying a Toyota Highlander was, for an Illinois owner, the fact that it was advertised as “a family vehicle that safely fits 7 passengers with the captain chairs. We purchased a brand new 2022 Toyota Highlander for our family of 5. However, you cannot safely install a booster car seat in the third flow as advertised in ANY position. In every position of the third row the booster car seat covers the buckle, not allowing you to secure the seat belt/booster seat.”

The dealership suggested they buy a seat belt extender. But, the complaint says, the manual “states on page 59 not to use a seat belt extender as this could cause serious injury or death.”

An owner from Minnesota has a different seat problem that relates to the chest clip, buckle, and harness. “When the child is buckled in and the straps are all tight, they can be pulled loose without using the release button at the bottom. This is incredibly unsafe and would make this car seat useless if we were to be in a car accident.”

Your Lemon Law Rights

If you experience safety issues or any other problems that keep recurring, you may have bought a lemon. You can try and negotiate a settlement of some kind with the manufacturer. But it isn’t always easy. This is why many consumers prefer to turn to an experienced lemon law firm like Lemberg Law.

We have negotiated all types of settlements for clients from buybacks and trade-ins to replacement vehicles. So, if you think your car is a lemon, call our Helpline or fill in our contact form. We will evaluate your case free of charge.

Remember, the law says Toyota must pay the legal bills for lemon law cases.

Brian Jones

About the Author:

Brian Jones spent more than 30 years working as an ASE Certified Master Tech and Parts Specialist at multiple dealerships. Brian has become an authority in the industry, traveling across the country to consult for car dealerships and contributing his expertise as a writer for several major automotive publications. In his spare time, Brian enjoys working on pickup trucks, muscle cars, Jeeps and anything related to motorsports.

See more posts from Brian Jones
2 COMMENTS
  • Don I

    My wife was in a 2022 toyota highlander on a major express highway in the middle lane , that was being driven by a Uber driver. The car for no reason just stalled, and came to stop in heavy traffic . All electrical system shut down. Has anyone out there experienced that problem ? . Thank God no one was hurt, but could of ended badly.

  • Rhonda

    I have a 2022 Highlander and was driving interstate when my lower front bumper falls off. I did not hit any nor did anything fly into my lane. Are there any other Toyota Highlander owners have this same issue? Seems like a manufacturer issue but how can you prove that it is? Everything is plastic that holds it in place.

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