Hello to all!! I have a 1988 Toyota Corolla LE as my daily driver. It has 215k miles with the original motor and carb(till recently). I love this car to death and I will forever support the claim that these were some of the best cars ever built. I have always done most of the work on this car and enjoyed it very much as it is quite simple to work on. Alas, my luck has run out and I can't seem to figure something out that's wrong with it currently.
Ok so here is the backstory to my situation. In May, my car stopped in the middle of driving and I had to get it towed home. I left home for the Summer but I had someone start the car a couple times a week (It started up a few days after being towed home). It would start and idle well but it wasn't driven.
When I got home I ordered a reman carb as I knew it needed to be replaced anyway and figured it was the source of the problem. After installing it I realized there was something else wrong. I noticed the new fuel filter was not filling with fuel so I replace the fuel pump. After this, the car still wouldn't start and I eventually figured out the car wasn't getting spark because the distributor had failed. After replacing all those things the car is finally running.
There are a couple problems though.
First problem is during acceleration. Under 3k rpm the car accelerates very unevenly and sometimes not at all. It seems to run best in that rpm range when I only give it the smallest gas possible, anymore than that and it doesn't work. I feel like it may be too rich... When I give it gas and quickly back off the accelerator it seems to recover. After 3k rpm the car runs like normal and if i dump fuel long enough the car will switch gears and accelerate hard.
The second problem is when I cold start the car. Let me start off by saying my choke cable broke while I was gone for the Summer. Half the time I start the car it just idles low and I let it warm up that way. Other times it revs all the way up past 4k and drops over and over until the car gets a little warm and i can touch the gas to get it to stop. I fear this may damage the engine if it keeps happening.
Sorry for the long first post, but I have been part of a few forums and I know the more details the better.
For cold start assume you know you have to press accelerator a couple times to set choke and fast idle. Once it is running you should be able to tap accelerator and it should lower idle. Check all your vac lines( there are a ton of em) for proper hookup and leaks. In particular check lines going to distributor vac advance unit. Check the lines going to the EGR valve too. If the original distributor was still installed I would recommended checking the centrifugal advance as the weights can rust and bind and cause acceleration probs. There is also a vac operated aux accelerator pump on these carbs . If the diaphragm fails it can cause running issues. Even though a rebuilt carb it could have bad parts on it. IF you still have the old carb you could try a switch out to see if it helps any.
90 GP, I am familiar with the way the choke works but I'm not sure if your description helps me fix the issue I'm having. Did you read the part bout my choke cable being broken? I had previously checked the lines to the vac advance. I am almost positive I have them all connected correctly, but I could be wrong. There definitely aren't any leaking or no connected as I have checked a few times, unless I am not doing that correctly could you give me a step-by-step? I was really hoping not to have to put the old carb back on, but I am willing to do it and have thought about it... Or are you saying I should just switch out the diaphragm? And if so can you explain where it is located?
Finnish, I have heard of doing this. Would it be worth it if I can return the carb? Can you give me an estimate of how much it would cost and what the procedure is on doing the swap?
cali carb had alot more emissions control on it, so vacuum lines are gonna be different. an efi swap aint too bad if you can find a corolla in a jyard. pull the double bafel tank, fuel pump, fuel lines, efi intake, throttle body, and MOST IMPORT the ecm and MAF.
Not sure what you are referring to on a choke cable. There are linkages on the carb that set it and the fast idle . The only other cable is the accelerator cable . I don't recommend replacing the diaphram in the rebuild just mentioned it as a possible cause. I mention putting on the old carb as it sounds like it was condemned as a cause when it was found to be ignition related. You may have a dud rebuilt carb or as mentioned the wrong one for your car. I would definitely hang on to the old carb whether you reinstall it or not. . Here is a link to vac diagrams:
when a distributor/plugs/plug wires go bad, it either stops running, or the timing and running floats around, and acts differently from one minute to the next... it may run good and then run like crap, then run good, and this goes back and forth.. or it can feel like it's running on 3 cylinders (in a 4 cylinder engine).
when starving for gas, it starves under load, up hill, when stomping the gas..
when the carb is out of adjustment,, it will be too rich , too lean, not idle correctly,, idle too fast.. or rpm ramp up and down while idling..
maybe for the vacuum hoses, take a digital camera take some photos,, and post, or send them to someone with the same car so they can compare, or say the model you have of car and carb, and get the correct diagrams, photos.
I doubt smog parts would hurt the car that much because back in 1988, the ecm computer didn't control that many functions. The new ones a smog part gone bad would make the computer go crazy..
by the way, autozone.com has a carb adjusment section for repairs, just go their website, put in the car info, and it will tell you how to adjust each part of the carb. To me it sounds like the carb needs adjusting.
Since my carb is 1989 Corolla , California. I cannot say more about your model, but I can say I have bought a Napa carb rebuild kit and rebuilt mine (about 7 years ago). the car now has 380,000 miles on it. I then had to go through the adjustments. I took photos of before and after of all the parts. But, they won't help your car... at least I don't think so.
btw, the carb on mine is electronic,, maybe you mean the wire broke to the thermostat piece on the side that adjusts the carb according to temperature. not sure if yours is like mine.
1989 Toyota Corolla SR5, Carb. (retired for very high mileage, 400,000 miles).
1993 Camry LE (Daughter uses it)
2001 BMW 530i (Family Batmobile)
Last edited by retiredat44; 11-14-2012 at 01:13 PM.
The cable I am referring to is attached to the top of the accelerator and I believe it is actually referred to as the linkage. It is attached to a box that makes a clicking noise that I always associated with the choke being engaged when the accelerator pedal is depressed before a cold start.
I have been wondering whether there are adjustment screws on the carb (like old carbs) one for fuel, and one for air. The only two I am familiar with on this carb is the idle screw and fast idle(still not sure what this does).
Retiredat, thanks for the details. It is definitely not running lean. Unfortunately I didn't think it through enough the distributor definitely should have been done first.
I do believe I have an idea of why it's behaving the way it is (not referring to the cold start issue). When I was removing vacuum lines from the EBCV, I accidentally broke off one of the pieces that the hoses connects to. From left to right if looking directly at it, it's the left one I broke and I haven't figured out a way to rig something to hook up that vac line again. I spent some time reading a thread on here that was incredibly informative and from that I believe that the line I currently don't have connected controls the A/F mixture for the primary jets. This would explain why the car runs so poorly at low rpm but normal when the secondary jets kick in.
if a steel tube a rubber vacuum line connect to, got broke off or bent, it can be replace,, a good autoshop can fix it or youmight be able to buy the pieces from a junk yard.. maybe take a digital picture and post it..
I found a link with photos of those parts (different car):
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