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short-throw dipstick
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Hey guys, as promised, I'm going to do a teardown inspection on my blown 5S-FE out of my '00 CA-spec Camry. This is going to be a cursory inspection where I take the engine apart, no measurements on anything as I suspect the bottom end is mangled.

Hah, let me give the backstory, just one last time. So I originally bought this J-VIN, CA-spec Camry with 179K for $300 because it had rod knock. Bought a replacement engine from a wrecker for $900; they claimed that it was CA-spec, but it was federal. I converted it (swapped over fuel injectors, throttle boy, IAC, and harness), did all the external seals and neglected to do the valve stem seals before dropping it in. I didn't have a shop then, and my prissy neighbors were complaining about me working on a car in front of my house; so I put off the valve stem seals, thinking I'd do them at a later date and keep an eye on the oil level.

Car ran fine after the swap, but because the busted engine had such low output due to Cylinder Down, I didn't notice that the transmission was slipping in reverse. Made an educated guess about the valve body, swapped that for a known good unit, no change...so a teardown of that busted transmission is coming as well!

So a rather personal emergency came up which potentially involved carting a friend back with his stuff from Rochester. I decided I needed a bit of a vacation as well, so loaded up and took off from San Jose, CA to drive to Rochester and see what I could see along the way. I had a lot of conversations with various people (sucks when you're the one who handles everybody's shit and you're MIA. Leave me be, jerks, I'm trying to vacate) and I forgot to check the oil until I reached Rochester and hit a steep uphill road, at which point the oil pressure light came on. Oh shi-...I thought. Drove a couple miles to a Walmart, picked up the cheapest conventional SuperTech, and dumped in 3.1 quarts (which means 0.7 was in the crankcase...).

Shit hit the fan - as it always does - and I was frustrated enough on the way back that I once again didn't keep an eye on the oil level. Filled up at a get-you-some-murder unmanned gas station about 10 miles outside Elko, NV and got back on I-80. Hit another uphill grade, and the car started bucking after heading up about a half mile. No oil pressure light...like an idiot, I put my foot through the firewall. Engine revved up, there was a loud bang, smoke started pouring from under the hood and I coasted to a stop in the emergency lane. Turned off the engine, by which point it dumped out about 1/3 quart of oil onto the asphalt through this:




...yup, it threw a rod. I had AAA tow it the few miles to Elko, then rented a U-Haul box truck and a dolly and towed it the rest of the way home myself (I never let go of my cars unless they're in great running condition). Fast forward a year (maybe more?) and I found the perfect donor vehicle: engine and transmission in good running shape, the guy's sister was on her phone and caused a three-car pileup. My strategy for [eventually] winning at life is, only ever let something work on you once; so I did a complete sealing job on the engine, including Viton valve stem seals (if any of you checked out my powertrain swap DIY). The car is running great again, and it's time to inspect the busted powertrain.

This will be ongoing as I free up tools like engine stands (I only have three, gimme a break) and the like, so feel free to populate the thread with comments, questions, suggestions, requests, and jokes.
 
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short-throw dipstick
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Discussion Starter #2
Let's have an auspicious (or not) start: I sent in a sample of the residual oil to Blackstone Labs for analysis. Here's the report:




...there was only about half a quart of oil left in the pan; I had a Fumoto valve on there, so just filled up the sample container from there. It's worth mentioning that regardless of the high TBN (still lot of usable life left in this oil), the oil was dark as the ace of spades. Looked nasty, had a lot of visible metal flakes in it.

Yup, as per their analysis, high levels of lead and tin from the bearings, and lots of aluminum from the piston, probably due to slap wear since the rod isn't secured to the crank anymore. Iron from cylinder liner (or cylinder itself because iron block; if no liners, dun remember). When I get to the bottom end we'll check out the bearings for localized discoloration from overheating; there'll obviously be gouging and galling. Judging by the welt on the oil pan, #2 cylinder blew.
 
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short-throw dipstick
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Discussion Starter #3
I stripped down the head to get to this point:




...removed exhaust manifold, intake manifold, water outlet, grounds, camshaft position sensor and mount, valve cover, and still need to pull the alternator off. Note how sludgy the head is...I don't remember if it was that sludgy when I put this engine in, but I guarantee that the PCV system was new OE. Initial fill was with SuperTech full synthetic 5W-30, which was refilled with SuperTech conventional 5W-30.
 

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short-throw dipstick
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Discussion Starter #4
So check it out, there's metal flakes circulating through the system and collecting in the head:




...especially seems to accumulate in corners/pockets where oil isn't so...tidal:




I took off the last bearing cap to get out the distributor hole plug, it's got some flakes and chunks of sludge in it:




See this well?




...it has a counterpart on the other side of the head, they act as drip oilers. the oil hits the valve cover baffle plate and the chamber walls, falls down, and some of it fills the wells on either side, which overflow and keep the "aqueducts" under the cam towers lubed at the edges. Since the oil flow isn't very turbulent in these, they tend to accumulate big chunks of sludge, as you can see. Here's it's counterpart on the other side:




Used some Vise-grips and a dead-blow mallet to remove the spark plug tubes. Looks like sludge was accumulating at the corners between the tubes and cam towers as well:




...note that I loosened all the head bolts as well. They have to be loosened in small steps (let's say, 1/4 turn at a time until they're all free, then use power tools), in a particular sequence to prevent uneven release of the clamp load:




...all the head bolts require a 12-point 12mm socket. Best way is to use a breaker bar or cheater pipe and go slowly. Regular 12-point sockets have 120-degree corners just like the 6-points; that's why we call it "double-hex." Other Toyota engines use double-hex socket-head cap bolts requiring a double-hex bit socket. Note that this is different from the 12-point, "triple-square" (90-degree corners) bit sockets you need on VAG products; if you use those bits, you will strip the headbolts on such Toyota engines (GR series uses these, as does the Tercel? engine IIRC). The proper bit sockets are readily available from only a couple sources: CTA Tools, which are cheap but have numerous reports of stripping out; and Snap-On, which are expensive, but work.

Broke the HG's grip by levering ar the appropriate corners with a flathead, and lifted the head off. Here're the valve faces:




...1-4 from left to right. Note that #2 looks cleaner but has some serious deposits on the intake valves (and less deposits on the exhaust valves). If you check the oil analysis, you'll see that they didn't find any antifreeze in the oil; the head gasket was not blown, and the cylinder is NOT clean due to "steam cleaning" from antifreeze ingress. This head is in excellent shape; no scoring on the cam journals or anything. I'll be sending it out to confirm and refresh: the machine shop will be cleaning, checking for cracks, resurfacing, and doing a full valve job, including installing my spare set of Viton valve stem seals. Then, I'll toss the lifter buckets and camshafts back in, and do a valve clearance adjustment. If any of you are interested in an '00/'01 head after that, feel free to hit me up, it'll be for sale.

Head gasket looks good:




A little brighter image of the pistons:




...I pushed down on piston #2 (the cleanest looking one), and it dropped down almost a centimeter: yup, thrown rod. Here's a closer look at #1 and #2:




...wow, that's a lot of deposits on #1. I wonder how that happened, if it was like that when I got the engine (never looked down the plug holes, or if it happened over the course of my use, or if it happened due to wonky fuel control or something after the rod threw. These things don't have the most sophisticated engine control and diagnostic software, but the S engines are old-school simple and don't need much in the way of diagnostics. I ran it to move it short distances (screw metermaids) over the course of the past year and a half; it always had battery power, most of the time, it wouldn't throw any codes. Rarely, it threw a P0300 and had weird freezeframe data.

Oh, I sent out the injectors for ultrasonic cleaning in solvent and before-and-after flow testing, so I'll upload that report tomorrow. Just like to see data, no way the injectors could have caused this by running suddenly lean; in fact, they were flowing very close to spec at 184K. Denso makes some good stuff, eh?
 

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short-throw dipstick
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Discussion Starter #5
OK as promised, here's the injector cleaning/flow-testing report from Dr. Injector:




...no real problems, they were running a bit lean and gained a few cc's after the cleaning. No way running just a little lean would cause the engine failure, there's no detonation damage to the cylinders and the ECU would be more than capable of compensating. They had 184K on them at the time of the cleaning. Note the suggested rearrangement in the Comments - Recommendations section; middle cylinders tend to run hotter than outside cylinders, so they benefit, however slightly, from richer injectors (more fuel keeps cylinder cooler). Dr. Injector in Sacramento's service was good, it was a bit slow but the guy is busy and was up-front about it. Plus if you saw my swap write-up, it was a long project anyway so I was happy to wait, no harm, no foul. Currently waiting on my '99 V6 manual's injectors from him, and shipping out my Flex-Fuel Vulcan injectors from my Taurus tomorrow so he can ship all 12 back together.

I gotta troubleshoot one thing: my LTFT on the busted engine and the current, refreshed one sits at 10.9 or 12.5 at idle (richening the mixture due to perceived lean condition). That drops when you throttle, goes to zero real quick. No vacuum leaks, and assuming the injectors are gravy, I'm going to check the MAP sensor or suspect the ECU. Anybody else have this going on?

Be a few days before I update this, I need an engine stand available before I start ripping the block apart. Got my Taurus Vulcan on one doing lifters and pushrods, got a Suzuki H27 on another waiting for mounts before I can drop it in (lol, trying to find Suzuki OE parts in the US), and got a '70 Beetle 1.6 on the third that I'm rebuilding. Might ninja it in on the Beetle one because I have to send that one out to be vapor blasted so it looks pretty.
 

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イリジウム
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The injectors look fine. It'd seem to suggest false air entry. But given some member's problem with EGR insufficient code, you're right to suspect the ECU as well as the MAP. Maybe do some measurements near idle vacuum level.
 

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イリジウム
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Also, I was wondering if the oil consumption is a result of a bad or failed valve stem seal. If the cylinder head is still around maybe check on the valve stem to valve guide clearance (do the valve stems rock in the guide?), as well as any deposit running down the valve guides. Particularly with the ash deposit on cyl #2 intakes.

I'm trying to find articles that calculated a drop every 20-40 feet is like using 1 quart over 200-400 miles or something of that sort. So it's entirely possible in your 550 mile trip the engine sucked out most of the oil in the crankcase.

Most likely the oil went past the valve stem seals or the piston rings, since there are no signs of external leaks or anything past the head gasket? Even with the new PCV system you can check the intake hose and see if there is any oil going through there. Kinda doubt that (PCV), as if quarts of oil went through there you'd be able to see it in the intake hoses and ducts.

BTW, the original thread:
https://www.toyotanation.com/forum/103-camry-3rd-4th-gen-1992-1996-1997-2001-1st-gen-solara-1999-2003/1494458-5s-fe-investigating-some-pretty-bad-rod-knock-10.html#post12832658
 

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short-throw dipstick
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Discussion Starter #8
Also, I was wondering if the oil consumption is a result of a bad or failed valve stem seal. If the cylinder head is still around maybe check on the valve stem to valve guide clearance (do the valve stems rock in the guide?), as well as any deposit running down the valve guides. Particularly with the ash deposit on cyl #2 intakes.

I'm trying to find articles that calculated a drop every 20-40 feet is like using 1 quart over 200-400 miles or something of that sort. So it's entirely possible in your 550 mile trip the engine sucked out most of the oil in the crankcase.

Most likely the oil went past the valve stem seals or the piston rings, since there are no signs of external leaks or anything past the head gasket? Even with the new PCV system you can check the intake hose and see if there is any oil going through there. Kinda doubt that (PCV), as if quarts of oil went through there you'd be able to see it in the intake hoses and ducts.

BTW, the original thread:
https://www.toyotanation.com/forum/103-camry-3rd-4th-gen-1992-1996-1997-2001-1st-gen-solara-1999-2003/1494458-5s-fe-investigating-some-pretty-bad-rod-knock-10.html#post12832658
Piston rings were good when I did the erstwhile swap, I checked compression dry and wet. Definitely valve stem seals...I'll post pics when I pull off one valve before I send the head to the machine shop (Sunday).

The car wasn't running over the 550-mile trip - that was me towing it back home lol. Looks like it burned through about 1 qt/1000 miles of nearly pure highway driving.

EDIT: the original thread you linked to (TY) is the engine I bought the car with; just to clarify, the teardown inspection is on the engine that replaced that.
 
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'00 4 Cyl. Auto Camry LE
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It's interesting that Cylinders #2 and #4 's appearance corresponds to the injector report for both being (lean), where #1 and #3 are "carboned up" pretty well.

The appearance of Cyl. #1 looks similar to the condition of all (4) cyls. on the Camry here when first received back in '14 - it had ran for 120,000+ miles on the same set of plugs: gap looked at least .010 over where it should have been on all plugs when removed :)facepalm). Motor was running extremely rich - cruised around (and lugged) like a old Lincoln Continental, lol.

It's been many moons since my last engine teardown: and not in the trade / or wrench motors like you do ISB, although IIRC those deposits on the valves for Cyl. #2 sure look like oil Ash buildup, at least to me anyway.

Your engine / trans. threads are always cool (!) - Subscribed with interest.
 

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short-throw dipstick
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Discussion Starter #10
It's interesting that Cylinders #2 and #4 's appearance corresponds to the injector report for both being (lean), where #1 and #3 are "carboned up" pretty well.

The appearance of Cyl. #1 looks similar to the condition of all (4) cyls. on the Camry here when first received back in '14 - it had ran for 120,000+ miles on the same set of plugs: gap looked at least .010 over where it should have been on all plugs when removed :)facepalm). Motor was running extremely rich - cruised around (and lugged) like a old Lincoln Continental, lol.

It's been many moons since my last engine teardown: and not in the trade / or wrench motors like you do ISB, although IIRC those deposits on the valves for Cyl. #2 sure look like oil Ash buildup, at least to me anyway.

Your engine / trans. threads are always cool (!) - Subscribed with interest.
Thing is, I replaced the plugs on the initial swap with brand-new NGK 3452's. They looked a bit dark when I pulled them out, but not too bad.

Hm, maybe cyl #2 had excessive blowby due to barely any piston movement. Back when I was an emissions control engineer we used to sell these blowby meters for engine development (well, ring and cylinder development), they worked by measuring vortex shedding (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vortex_shedding). I remember similar buildup when pistons barely moved but fuel and oil collected. Incidentally this is related to how the Karman-vortex MAFs on older Toyotas work.
 

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'00 4 Cyl. Auto Camry LE
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Could be, or leaking valve stem seals on that cylinder, like you guys were discussing above.

I still wrench small engines here on occasion, had a Briggs 10hp OHV engine w/ bad valve stem seals, valves looked liked that / Cyl. 2, after head removal.
 

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short-throw dipstick
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Discussion Starter #12
Could be, or leaking valve stem seals on that cylinder, like you guys were discussing above.

I still wrench small engines here on occasion, had a Briggs 10hp OHV engine w/ bad valve stem seals, valves looked liked that / Cyl. 2, after head removal.
Hm, not to derail myself but I might have that problem now that I think about it...have a Toro mower that was getting thrown away, Briggs 6.5HP motor that blows blue smoke on startup. Then again, I have been meaning to pick up a nice pro-grade Honda OHC mower on CL...
 

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short-throw dipstick
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Discussion Starter #13
Been a while. Still haven't gotten to teardown, too much to do. In the meanwhile, here's the analysis of the third oil change on the "new" engine (initial 184K, second 192K, third 200K):



...as you can see, the oil still has life left in it after 8.2K or so (look at TBN). Next change will be at 10K (210K on engine).

My iron and other metal content went down significantly since the last oil change; only change is that I used a Denso 150-2013 (Vulcan, significantly larger) filter instead of the stock Denso 150-2000. Might be cleaning up the old wear particles...the Densos are purported to have a lower filtration efficiency than high-quality aftermarket filters.

Silicon got a bit higher; my air filter looks fine and all hoses look good. Air filter will be changed at 30K (also 210K). I do have a hypothesis: I've noticed oil dripping from the intake-to-head joint. I believe the crappy Mahle/Victor Reinz intake gasket I used isn't doing its job and allowing oil to seep. The scorpion intake does allow oil to pool a bit, and by no means do Toyota engines of this era have sophisticated PCV designs. At 210K, I'll redo the intake gasket with a nice OE.

I'll do the teardown within the next couple months. In the meanwhile, just waiting until 210K for the legion of small things.
 
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