Toyota Nation Forum banner

1 - 9 of 9 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone, I have an 89 manual Camry wagon with 140k km on the clock, I was topping up oil a couple of times between oil changes (every 5000km's) but not with too much oil.

A mechanic acquaintance suggested that the spark plug tubes may need resealing and was probably the cause of the lost oil.
I took the car to his shop, but I think they got the first-year apprentice on his first week to do the work, so many mistakes! anyway, after the repair the engine started to burn a liter of oil a week, and blow a lot of smoke after going downhill which it hadn't done b4.

I took the car back, looked at it and booked the car back in. they claimed to have resealed the tubes (also broke the windscreen with the bonnet), the car burnt slightly less oil but still a lot more than originally. I have since tested the compression, 140psi on each cylinder cold, all exactly the same. Pulled the tubes out, they all look clean, not bent or damaged theads etc. It was suggested that the PCV valve may be blocked, but it's integrated in the rocker cover, im currently soaking it in white spirits.

Engine runs great, open road and city. I'm struggling to understand what can happen overnight during a simple repair to cause such a dramatic change in oil consumption.
Any comments and suggestions would be appreciated.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,419 Posts
My wild guess is that they used an additive to clean out carbon deposits (like Seafoam, etc), that has caused blow-by of oil past the piston rings.

You might consider tying a slightly higher viscosity, but not sure what you are using now. I am not saying that will fix it, but maybe slow it down. Maybe also try a High Mileage oil.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,415 Posts
Adding oil twice between changes on a car with less than 100k miles but it is 30 years old?
If the spark plug tubes were leaking that much they would be full and running out the top.
I'm confused about the shop work and what could have caused the dramatic increase in oil consumption.

All that being said, I totally agree with this, your best "chance" to cure oil consumption is the PCV, 3000 miles a year will definitely plug that valve up, but the coincidence of it changing a lot after a simple reseal ofthe plug cups seem like a stretch to me.

I used to clean PCVs on old 1960s Chrysler slant sixes and the oil consumption went from a quart in 400 miles with a lot of smoke on startup, to 1500 miles a quart with no smoke on startup.

Put a balloon over the dip stick tube to test crankcase blowby, which has nothing to do with plug tubes, which I can not mentally connect to the oil consumption, unless it's leaking all over the top of the engine.

If I broke your windshield, I would either replace it myself or pay to have it replaced. The rule here is not responsible for things beyond my control. If I can't work on your car without breaking the windshield, I need to find a new occupation.
 

·
3s-gte in a Camry?!?
'89 Camry Alltrac
Joined
·
8,330 Posts
Which engine do you have in your Camry? The US delivered 3s-fe (EFI) did not have a PCV valve, just an open vent to the intake manifold. It can still clog though with time (head orifice, hose or orifice at the throttle body). As others have said, leaking spark plug tubes just damages your spark plugs - there should be no way for the oil to get down to the combustion chamber from there.

140psi compression is a bit on the low side, but not totally worrying. A healthy 3s-fe should do 6k.-10km oil change intervals with less than 1 quart loss (I literally never added oil to my original 3s-fe MT Camry in its 267k mile life).

If you get a big puff of oil smoke on cold start, you probably have leaking valve stem seals. That shouldn't lead to major oil consumption until it gets really bad.

If it was leaking a quart/liter of oil or more per oil change interval, you would definitely see it all over the engine bay. The distributor is the most likely leak location - it will show up on the top of the trans and over the back of the engine near where the right side (long) axle comes out.

-Charlie
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for yr answers,
i'll definitely try the ballon trick (or something similar ;) ) for testing for crank case blowby. good idea. I just put everything back together, seems to be running great. I suspect cylinder no. 2 may have a leaking valve stem seal as that spark plug seems to have a wet thread when i remove it. I'll check on oil consumption over the next week or so.The leads aren't wet with oil at all so the tubes seem to be sealed now. I soaked the rocker cover in white spirits, seems to have a free flow of air there too.

Adding oil twice between changes on a car with less than 100k miles but it is 30 years old?
If the spark plug tubes were leaking that much they would be full and running out the top.
I'm confused about the shop work and what could have caused the dramatic increase in oil consumption.

All that being said, I totally agree with this, your best "chance" to cure oil consumption is the PCV, 3000 miles a year will definitely plug that valve up, but the coincidence of it changing a lot after a simple reseal ofthe plug cups seem like a stretch to me.

I used to clean PCVs on old 1960s Chrysler slant sixes and the oil consumption went from a quart in 400 miles with a lot of smoke on startup, to 1500 miles a quart with no smoke on startup.

Put a balloon over the dip stick tube to test crankcase blowby, which has nothing to do with plug tubes, which I can not mentally connect to the oil consumption, unless it's leaking all over the top of the engine.

If I broke your windshield, I would either replace it myself or pay to have it replaced. The rule here is not responsible for things beyond my control. If I can't work on your car without breaking the windshield, I need to find a new occupation.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
My engine, (Australia) is the 3sf actually, has a carby. There doesn't seem to be any major leaks, everything is dry, the distributor has been rebuilt, to replace the oil seals abt a year ago. As i said from one day to the next kinda normal oil consumption to like a liter a week. If the valve stem seals (one or more are gone .... could be, that rubber is 30 years old now) i'm happy to take the head off are recondition it, new seals and reseat valves etc. i like the car and it's a better car than the new echo i bought. which i'll sell when i fix this one.

Which engine do you have in your Camry? The US delivered 3s-fe (EFI) did not have a PCV valve, just an open vent to the intake manifold. It can still clog though with time (head orifice, hose or orifice at the throttle body). As others have said, leaking spark plug tubes just damages your spark plugs - there should be no way for the oil to get down to the combustion chamber from there.

140psi compression is a bit on the low side, but not totally worrying. A healthy 3s-fe should do 6k.-10km oil change intervals with less than 1 quart loss (I literally never added oil to my original 3s-fe MT Camry in its 267k mile life).

If you get a big puff of oil smoke on cold start, you probably have leaking valve stem seals. That shouldn't lead to major oil consumption until it gets really bad.

If it was leaking a quart/liter of oil or more per oil change interval, you would definitely see it all over the engine bay. The distributor is the most likely leak location - it will show up on the top of the trans and over the back of the engine near where the right side (long) axle comes out.

-Charlie
 

·
Registered
1990 Camry
Joined
·
39 Posts
I haven't opened up my 3SFE(North American), but if I were to ever replace any internal seal I would avoid Fel-Pro brand products. Maybe they still do great on GM/Ford/Holden's, but I've found on a recent rebuild of a Nissan L series engine nearly all the brand new Fel-Pro seals I installed had to be replaced with OEM seals(rear main and valve stem seal).

I won't claim to know why, but the OEM seals don't leak anything now since installed.

That's if you find yourself replacing valve stem seals, of course. I'm not saying that's your issue. Hopefully it's something simple.

Cheers
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
I had a bad oil ring... didn't puff at all on startup, but if you went up a big hill and then downshifted going down other side, decent amount of blue smoke, think James Bond. Would smoke a bit going down road, too. Compression was a little short of stock but not too noticeable, eventually lost all compression of course, about a year or so later.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2 Posts
My 1991 has a bad head gasket now. Before I found a bad oil pump seal. it looked like a thin rubber band and fit under the drive pully. The back of my 2.0 is wet with oil, but it is not the valve cover gasket. Also replaced an o-ring under the distributor. The oil ruined the case on the coil, replaced that too. The oil leak completely destroyed four timing belts in ten years!
 
1 - 9 of 9 Posts
Top