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Zzzz
Camry
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2,255 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
where's the coolant drain plug on the block?
The haynes manual says it's on the rear of the block, but the only thing I could find on the rear that resembles a drain plug has something obstructing it, and seems like the coolant would just run down the back side of the block before even hitting a pan.

Also, the toyota manual seems to say nothing about it being on the back, and shows it being on the same side as the radiator... maybe I'm missing something here.

lastly, if what I think it is on the back is it, then how do I get to it with the hose in the way?
 

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Zzzz
Camry
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2,255 Posts
Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Just to clarify. I'm not sure if the thing in front of the plug is actually a hose or if it's a motor mount. It's on the backside, a little bit up when you're laying under it, looking straight up.

Also, if this is it, what kind of tool do you guys use? I can't fit my socket in there, and I was using a tiny socket. It seems very difficult to actually loosen it with a regular wrench too.
 

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Triple A Whore
Z06, Camry, Tucson
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7,656 Posts
I thought you drained the coolant from the little petcock on the lower passenger side of the radiator?
 

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I'm a Mac
DD - 94 Mitsu 3000GT
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4,062 Posts
^yup.

do that, then throw a gardenhose in, fill it up, and then run it a little, then empty it out, do that one more time, then fill it up with coolant/water mix
 

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Registered
Avalon
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262 Posts
Don't worry about the residual coolant in block. I do it the same as those above accept I usually use a commercial cleaner that you can get at any autoparts store. The secret here is to get out the majority of the coolant as it becomes corrosive.
 

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Zzzz
Camry
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2,255 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
fj40supraman said:
Don't worry about the residual coolant in block. I do it the same as those above accept I usually use a commercial cleaner that you can get at any autoparts store. The secret here is to get out the majority of the coolant as it becomes corrosive.
Well, the reason I wanted to do the complete flush including a drain and refill was because I've been having overheating trouble and I don't believe the previous owner changed coolant very frequently.

I have flush in now. When I'm done, I wanted to drain it out of the block and the rad, then garden house it a bit, then put the coolant in.
 

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I'm a Mac
DD - 94 Mitsu 3000GT
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4,062 Posts
if you are overheating and you have FULL coolant... your waterpump and thermostat should be changed.

it doesnt matter how old it is, it shouldnt be overheating with full coolant any day.
 

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Zzzz
Camry
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2,255 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Zoni_Camry said:
if you are overheating and you have FULL coolant... your waterpump and thermostat should be changed.

it doesnt matter how old it is, it shouldnt be overheating with full coolant any day.
The coolant was low and the thermostat was bad. But I figured I'd give it a full flush as well, just to ensure that nothing down the line will be problematic. If you think that it's sufficient just to drain it out of the radiator, dump some more water in, run it for a bit, then drain that and just rinse and repeat the process, then I'll stick with that.

The water pump was recently replaced (by the previous owner), so I know that's not an issue.
 

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Registered
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134 Posts
Yes the coolant drain plug for the 5S-FE block is a pain in the butt to get to. I managed with just basic hand tools and jacks. It will run all over everything (even went into my eyes) so be careful and wear glasses of some sort. I can probably get a more specific photo from my Haynes manual if you'd like.
 

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Zzzz
Camry
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2,255 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
gcs118 said:
Yes the coolant drain plug for the 5S-FE block is a pain in the butt to get to. I managed with just basic hand tools and jacks. It will run all over everything (even went into my eyes) so be careful and wear glasses of some sort. I can probably get a more specific photo from my Haynes manual if you'd like.
I have the haynes, I was just hoping it wasn't where I think/thought it was.

I went to sears and bought a small (and thin) wratchet, hopefully I'll be able to get that in there without much of an issue. The difficult thing about it is not only getting in there, but being able to get in there with something that's long enough to get the torque needed to loosen it.
 

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Registered
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95 Posts
Block drain

On the '97(and hopefully on the '93) 5S-FE the block drain PLUG is indeed on the back of the block, towards the top on the passenger side.
you can reach it from under the car with a long extension and a 14mm socket snaked in past the exhust pipe. loosen it from under the car, then remove it by reaching in from the top. that way you'll avoid getting the coolant all over you.
Hope this helps
JerryR
 

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Registered
Avalon
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262 Posts
Had the same problem with my Corolla overheating. First thing to to is flush/refill and change out thermostat, as it is cheap, and won't hurt. Next if it still overheats, I'd check to make sure the fan switch is working, its a temperature switch that turns the fans on (and off) when maximum temp is reached. You should be able to hear or see if fans run. Its a little more money, but like the thermostat can be checked (for continuity) in a water boil. If that don't work, remove the bottom hose of the radiator, stick your hose in the top and see if flow out bottom equals flow into the top. If not it's the culprit, and you can probably get a new one for $100. Just make sure you take out the radiator in the right order, sometimes you have to remove the fans first. I learned this the hard way, by ruining a few bad ones when I removed them. You said you already ruled out water pump, so that is the plan I would take. Let me know what was causing it, I'm kinda curious?
 

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Zzzz
Camry
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2,255 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
well, the fans are kicking on, so unless the fan switches aren't kicking on in the right order, they should be ok, along with the fans.

My only suspect, if this doesn't cure it is possibly the pump belt.
A couple months ago I was getting a squealing at start-up, it's possible that that's what it could've been.

Either way, a new thermostat and a coolant flush can't be a bad idea with this car, we'll see how things go though.
 

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Grenaded piston
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6,602 Posts
CrawlingEye said:
My only suspect, if this doesn't cure it is possibly the pump belt.

A couple months ago I was getting a squealing at start-up, it's possible that that's what it could've been.
The water pump is driven by the timing belt.

So I doubt its the timing belt, otherwise your engine wouldn't even run.
 

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Zzzz
Camry
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2,255 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
88 LE said:
The water pump is driven by the timing belt.

So I doubt its the timing belt, otherwise your engine wouldn't even run.
ok, thanks, 88. I'll complete the flush today, so we'll see how it goes after that. :)
 

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Registered
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79 Posts
LE 2001 V6

My plan of action is as follows.

1. Remove radiator drain plug, drain coolant.
2. Remove the front engine plug drain and lift rear of car so that
more coolant drains out that was trapped in the rear of the
engine block so not to remove the rear engine plug
3. Remove the lower radiator hose where it connects to the
water inlet pipe so that I can
4. Replace the inlet pipe o ring and thermostat
5. Replace both radiator and engine plugs,
6. Fill sytem with "Toyota Coolant" along with distilled water.
First I'll measure all the coolant that comes from draining so I
can I can pre mix the coolant with distilled water.

I would rather not flush with a garden hose because of the minerals in the water that would remain in the heater core and part of the engine block just because of the corrosive minerals in public water.

To solve this I could fill system only with distilled water, turn heater to high (themostat removed) and drain. Repeat this once again. Now I'll know that the only water which remains in the heater core and engine block is distilled water. Also, if I measure the amount that came out during my first drain then I'll know How much to replace.
 

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Sleeper-still sleeping
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474 Posts
my friend's got a similar problem with his Civic (overheating at times), and we're doing a rad coolant flush this weekend. I hope that'll fix the problem, but if not I guess we'll have to go for a thermostat change.

BTW, does anyone know how much it would cost to replace the thermostat?
 

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Zzzz
Camry
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2,255 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 · (Edited)
It was $13 for a beck arnley "low temp" thermostat for my Camry.

An update to everyone:
I ended up having to buy a new drain plug for the block because apparently the previous owner thought it was a good idea to stuff a 13mm (thread) plug in there, when a 12mm (thread) plug is what is supposed to fit. I ended up going to a local machine shop for the 12mm plug, as most shops don't carry metric plugs.

At first, while draining, the block didn't drain, so I ended up having to jab it with a screwdriver a couple times to loosen up some of the gunk to let the coolant drain. After I did that a couple times, the coolant was all drained out, so I just put the new plug in, filled the reservoir and added the new coolant.
(This was prior to putting prestone flush in).

It was easy once I got the plug, that plug was a bitch to 1) get to 2) get off and 3) find a replacement for

Edit: I was very fortunate that the 13mm plug was only partially in and didn't mess up the threading on the actual block.
 
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