93 Camry Rough Idle and No Power In Drive - Toyota Nation Forum : Toyota Car and Truck Forums


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3rd & 4th Generation (19921996 & 19972001) Toyota Camry Discussion for years: 1992-1996 & 1997-2001 Topics of discussion range from fuel economy, safety, modifications, performance all involving America's favorite family car, the Toyota Camry.

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Old 02-09-2013, 06:28 PM   #1 (permalink)
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93 Camry Rough Idle and No Power In Drive

Hi All,

Bought my camry wagon about 3 months ago with 125k on it. It had been sitting for several years so here's what I ended up replacing to get things running right:

2 Knock Sensors
Intake Manifold Gaskets
Spark Plugs
Cap and Rotor
Plug Wires
One Injector was bad, so replaced with new
and Oil/Coolant/Air Filter /Battery all new

Was running great for about a month or so. The other night I was coming home on the freeway doing 60 when all of a sudden it started slowing down. I thought the tranny wasn't shifting but no matter how much throttle I gave it, It just kept slowing down. I managed to pull into a parking lot where it was basically only capable of going 2 mph and running super rough.

So I started trying to diagnose it with my Haynes manual. I replaced the fuel filter and fuel pump. Still not right. We messed with it again today and noticed that when we pinched the return fuel line it seemed to idle better. I read that this could be a bad fuel pressure reg. In an effort to not spend a fortune I grabbed both of them (one per rail) off a junk car. For a while it seemed to be idling better but once I put it in drive, it won't take off. It just sorta slowly creeps up to about 10-15 mph and won't go faster. However in park it seems to idle ok and rev up fine. I'm really lost now. We checked resistance on several sensors with no luck. Anyone have any ideas?
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Old 02-09-2013, 06:52 PM   #2 (permalink)
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If the engine revs fine in Park and Neutral, then maybe the problem is with the transmission?

What's the ATF's level and condition, from what little you can tell on the dipstick? How does it move in L or 2?
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Old 02-09-2013, 07:17 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JohnGD View Post
If the engine revs fine in Park and Neutral, then maybe the problem is with the transmission?

What's the ATF's level and condition, from what little you can tell on the dipstick? How does it move in L or 2?
Well, the engine is still running pretty rough. Right now it is starting and dying and takes some work to get warmed up. Idle is rough but does sound like it's firing on all the cylinders.

From what I can tell, the ATF didn't smell burnt and was full on the dipstick. It is moving the same in L and 2 from what I can tell, just creeping along.

I'm not sure if there is any vacuum lines going to the tranny or not, I didn't notice any. Was thinking it could be something along those lines but really not sure at this point.
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Old 02-09-2013, 07:51 PM   #4 (permalink)
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As I was reading your opening post, I was thinking the timing belt slipped a few teeth, until you said:

Quote:
However in park it seems to idle ok and rev up fine.
Which makes me think it's not the timing belt. Then in your second post, you said:

Quote:
Idle is rough but does sound like it's firing on all the cylinders.
Is it idling OK or not?
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1992 Camry LE, V6 (3VZ-FE), ABS brakes, dark emerald pearl, owned since new. Replaced HGs @332k, now at 359k miles
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2001 Yamaha FZ1, Ivan's jet kit, resprung, Ohlins rear shock, Race Tech cartridge emulators in forks, 49k
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Old 02-09-2013, 07:52 PM   #5 (permalink)
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If transmission is OK you might want to check for exhaust back pressure. Excessive back pressure would cause lack of power in gear but will rev normally in neutral. The catalytic converter could be restricted due to a misfire condition.
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Old 02-09-2013, 07:58 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMR View Post
As I was reading your opening post, I was thinking the timing belt slipped a few teeth, until you said:

Which makes me think it's not the timing belt. Then in your second post, you said:

Is it idling OK or not?
I'm hoping the tbelt didn't slip. The car sat for a long time. The cover says the belt was replaced in 1999 with 99k miles. Here we are in 2013 and it has 125k miles. When I asked a mechanic friend he seemed to think that the belt wouldn't deteriorate from just sitting that long, but idk.

Currently it's not idling right. It won't stay at idle unless you hold the pedal down for a minute or two for it to warm up. It seems that the idle gets a bit better as it warms up but it's still not running anywhere close to how it was when things were running right.


Haven't check the exhaust yet, I just figured it would be a strange thing to happen for a cat to clog up like that going 60 down the freeway and cause the car to lose power and slow down to an eventual stop.
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Old 02-09-2013, 08:01 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I also cleaned the IAC before issues arose. I did a full remove and clean with carb cleaner and greased the screw inside.
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Old 02-09-2013, 08:13 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Quote:
Haven't check the exhaust yet, I just figured it would be a strange thing to happen for a cat to clog up like that going 60 down the freeway and cause the car to lose power and slow down to an eventual stop.
This is what exactly happened to me. I was cruising along about 60mph and came upon a hill and the car slowed down and could barely make it up the hill. When I hit the gas the car falls on it's face. I drove home at about 30mph. Not saying that this is your problem but it is something worth checking.
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Old 02-09-2013, 08:45 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hzt30 View Post
This is what exactly happened to me. I was cruising along about 60mph and came upon a hill and the car slowed down and could barely make it up the hill. When I hit the gas the car falls on it's face. I drove home at about 30mph. Not saying that this is your problem but it is something worth checking.
Is there any way to check this without drilling holes and getting a pressure gauge in there? Sounds very similar to my issue.
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Old 02-09-2013, 09:31 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Usually a clogged cat won't cause idling problems. Just at higher RPM. ...Usually. An exhaust shop should be able to check it. They'll drill a small hole upstream of the cat and hook up a pressure gauge while revving the motor. If pressure builds quickly and takes too much time to fall back down, that indicates a clogged cat.

I'm betting the timing belt slipped. Even though the belt was changed only 30k miles ago. If they didn't replace the idler pulleys or the water pump, those can start to bind up or wobble and cause the belt to skip. Or maybe a really cheap belt was installed? Fairly easy to check it. Remove the upper belt cover, turn the crank over by hand until the ignition timing mark on the crank pulley lines up with "0", then see if the front & rear cam pulley marks are lined up with their index marks.
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1992 Camry LE, V6 (3VZ-FE), ABS brakes, dark emerald pearl, owned since new. Replaced HGs @332k, now at 359k miles
1996 Avalon XLS, ABS brakes, super white II, acquired w/ 139k, now at 298k
2001 Yamaha FZ1, Ivan's jet kit, resprung, Ohlins rear shock, Race Tech cartridge emulators in forks, 49k

Last edited by BMR; 02-09-2013 at 09:38 PM.
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Old 02-10-2013, 01:07 AM   #11 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BMR View Post
Usually a clogged cat won't cause idling problems. Just at higher RPM. ...Usually. An exhaust shop should be able to check it. They'll drill a small hole upstream of the cat and hook up a pressure gauge while revving the motor. If pressure builds quickly and takes too much time to fall back down, that indicates a clogged cat.

I'm betting the timing belt slipped. Even though the belt was changed only 30k miles ago. If they didn't replace the idler pulleys or the water pump, those can start to bind up or wobble and cause the belt to skip. Or maybe a really cheap belt was installed? Fairly easy to check it. Remove the upper belt cover, turn the crank over by hand until the ignition timing mark on the crank pulley lines up with "0", then see if the front & rear cam pulley marks are lined up with their index marks.
Awesome, i'll check the timing belt tomorrow, didn't realize it was that easy. I wouldn't doubt the cat needing to be replaced (seems to hold a lot of water in it when the car sits), but can't get the car out of my driveway currently so that will have to wait.
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Old 02-10-2013, 07:58 AM   #12 (permalink)
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a bad map sensor could cause rough idle and no power too. Make sure to check the wiring to the map sensor. I've had the wiring break before and would cause the car to idle super rough and have no power.

If you have a 3mzfe, check / clean the MAF sensor as well
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Old 02-10-2013, 12:28 PM   #13 (permalink)
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OP,
You might want to reach underneath and give the cat a slap with side of your fist or a rubber hammer. Listen for a rattle inside. If it rattles, it's gone.
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Old 02-10-2013, 12:32 PM   #14 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Perkins View Post
a bad map sensor could cause rough idle and no power too. Make sure to check the wiring to the map sensor. I've had the wiring break before and would cause the car to idle super rough and have no power.

If you have a 3mzfe, check / clean the MAF sensor as well
Sorry, should have specified its a 3vzfe v6 so no MAP sensor. I did clean the MAF sensor though.


I'll give my cat a slap and see what happens
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Old 02-10-2013, 08:10 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Got the cover off, looks like it slipped 1 tooth, here's the pic:



Is my assumption safe or does the belt lines not line up after running?
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