Thanks for the reply but I don't think it is actually a freeze plug the way we would generally refer to a "freeze plug" This is actually a plate with two nuts holding it in place. From the factory it had a liquid gasket installed that obviously did not have enough material to hold it over time. A plug could be knocked out of pop out in cold weather. This plate is to be removed in the event of adding a block heater in very cold climates like Alaska.
I decided to take a crack at this repair today even though I did not get any real information on the board or pictures that would help. It went pretty smooth and the hardest part was the different combinations of sockets and drives to fit in this tight area.
This first photo shows the plate before replacing the seal.
I lowered my coolant in the radiator by draining from the petcock on the bottom of the radiator. My hopes was this would draw some out of the block and keep the loss at a bare minimum. ?? The next shows the plate removed. A fair amount of coolant came out of the hole when I removed the plate. I would guess 1-2 quarts. After drying this area I used some brake cleaner to get as much of the old black gasket material as possible.
This shows the plate removed. Funny it kind of had an o-ring formed where the liquid gasket squeezed to the center at the factory.
Finally the gasket material I choose to use to put on the plate and put er back in place. Permatex Ultra Grey RTV Silicone. I'm letting it dry there over night before I start the engine and check for leaks. It says it dries in one hour and cures in 24.
Honestly the biggest challenge and decision has been on the coolant replacement itself. Finally I just decided to put in what I had on hand. The Toyota Long Life Coolant is a long debated subject on here and other boards. I can't image that the coolant manufactures could advertise and stand behind their products if they truly don't mix with the TLLC and work well. So after much thought, debate, agony and finally just making a decision I poured in about a half gallon of distilled water and some antifreeze I mixed up in my garage. It says on the jug it mixes with all "colors" and is for aluminum engines. "This formulas has a concentrated blend of premium long-lasting inhibitors to offer protection for up to 5 years or 150K miles" Woohoo!
It does contain Ethylene glycol, diethylend glycol and two other sodium things but I can't find anything about "phosphate-free and silicate-free formula". If I had it to do over I would have just bought some Peak Long Life (which says it has that stuff) or waited and ran to the Toyota dealer to get the high dollar stuff. What a pain in the butt! My guess is that my "red" color may be a little off but that will be about all that makes any difference. I will need a flush soon enough and can go back to "red" after the flush "unless I have introduced silicates into my system"
. It is late, I'm tired and I did not really want to wait. Will I regret it? I don't know but I do know the Permatex cost $7 so my total repair cost today was $7 as opposed to a dealer cost of $150 and that is a good dealer near me that treats me pretty good.
Hopefully this will help someone else on TN with this same engine. I think a lot of these leak but many times form a "coral like growth" instead of dripping. Really it is not that bad of a repair to save some money. I personnaly like to see photos to help me know what to expect. Sorry I forgot to capture the picture of the gasket material on the plate. That was tricky and I wanted to get it in place quickly.
BTW, I did notice that Zerex now has introduced a coolant for "Asian" cars and say it is equivelant to the TLLC.
I just don't think it matters too much.