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Old 12-07-2010, 08:22 PM   #1
minerdude1
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Default 5vz-fe problems

Welll, I got my 3.4 swap done a couple of months ago and it has been running great. I completely rebuilt this motor a year ago. New Toyota OE bearings, pistons and rings, complete ebay gasket kit, new timing belt/waterpump... etc.

I began to notice I was a little low on coolant a couple of days ago. I have had a CEL on for a while, like 3-4 weeks, P0125 and P0135. both referring to the bank 1 O2 sensor. I put new plugs in today as well as a upper radiator hose cause it had a couple of coolant drips off of it. I was hoping thats where my coolant was going. I drove it home, and put a different O2 sensor in it. After installing it, I started up the truck and white smoke billows out the exhaust. I have been smelling my exhaust occasionally but no coolant smell. Its definitely burning coolant now.

I guess the cheap gaskets have bitten me in the ass...

While rebuilding the motor, I had both head surfaces on the block machined, as well as both heads. It has not overheated, or even crept over half way on the gauge. (I have a super thick aluminum radiator that cools very well)

It seems to me that the only thing that could be wrong is a bad gasket. I have heard of heat from the crossover causing problems, but I super wrapped mine with exhaust wrap, so that should not be the problem.

I want to fix this, but correctly this time. I re-used my head bolts, and would like to go with ARP's this time. I also want to go with MLS headgaskets instead of the graphite composite.

Any ideas??
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Old 12-07-2010, 08:55 PM   #2
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your head bolts might be just as much the culprit as the gasket.... they are designed to be a 1x use type thing...
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Old 12-07-2010, 09:01 PM   #3
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yeah, but can you reuse a headgasket once it bypasses coolant like that? Or could I just replace the bolts and see if that works...

Course then is it doesnt work, I would have to buy another set if I replaced the head gaskets...
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Old 12-07-2010, 10:06 PM   #4
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Those bolts are multi use. I would toss them after 2 retorques though. I'd guess the aftermarket gaskets were to blame. How did you torque them?

edit: I'm too lazy to get on TIS, it should have been close to: 25ftlbs for all 8, torque an additional 90degrees all 8, then one more additional 90degrees for all 8, 18ftlbs about on the little headbolt.
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Old 12-07-2010, 10:11 PM   #5
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I torqued them to spec via FSM. I forgot what it was, something like 13 ft/lb then 30 ft/lb, then 90 degrees. Don't quote me on that, but I made sure I did it correctly. just pisses me off. I made sure I did everything right to keep this from happening. I should have just used good gaskets. I have just never had any problems with them in the past. I always examine my gaskets before I install them and they looked very comprable to fel-pro gaskets.

Brian, should I go OEM or find some MLS gaskets? Then should I go with regular bolts or studs?
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Old 12-07-2010, 10:14 PM   #6
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If you get head gaskets for a 2004 taco they should be MLS OEM. Not 100% though, it's been a while from the last 3.4 teardown.
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Old 12-07-2010, 10:19 PM   #7
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Bolts or studs? I've never had issues with stock bolts or gaskets so I would go that route. Studs require a different torque as they are not TTY, I think ARP tells you what to torque them to though.

I had mutiple issues with aftermarket headgaskets and water pumps on 22r engines, ruined me. I only use OEM stuff whenever possible for any job I do now.
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Old 12-07-2010, 10:20 PM   #8
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Ok cool. I will stop by Stevinson tomorrow and talk to Mark. So would I be ok with Fel-pro head bolts or should I go with OEM also?
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Old 12-07-2010, 10:29 PM   #9
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So would I be ok with Fel-pro head bolts or should I go with OEM also?
I'm not going to touch that with a 10ft pole.........

I don't know, I'd stick with OEM but that is just me.
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Old 12-07-2010, 10:33 PM   #10
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haha, well I guess I should have learned my lesson huh... I will get prices on those too. Thanks, and I will try to find the MLS ones to get. Thanks!
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Old 12-07-2010, 10:36 PM   #11
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You'll crap yourself, they can't be cheap.
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Old 12-07-2010, 10:48 PM   #12
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Its ok, I basically get them for cost

I found that there is a NO 1 and a NO 2 for headgaskets for the 99-04 3.4's. I assume that one of those are MLS. I will check tomorrow. Thanks Brian.
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Old 12-08-2010, 09:08 AM   #13
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Bummer dude. What coolant are you running? That red stuff eats gaskets for breakfast. Local guy in RS who is a good mechanic blames that for many LC HG problems in the 80 series.

But, if you are running green, its the gaskets. On the 3.4 and the 3.0 I've done, I refuse to put anything but OEM in the engine. I'm a little obsessive though.
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Old 12-08-2010, 09:32 AM   #14
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Yea, Robbie is kinda funny that way. There is no proof that red eats gaskets. There is proof that toyota has had issues with the composit gaskets out of the early 90s. The gasket issues really were limited to the 22r (not as often), 3vz, and 1fz. The car model line-up didn't suffer head gaskets issues like the trucks did (they also ran red coolant). I will not run anything other then red, most green coolants run compounds that are proven harmfull to toyota water pump seals (by manufacturer research).
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Old 12-08-2010, 10:49 AM   #15
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I have been running only Prestone green in it. Mainly cause thats what I have at home for all the vehicles I work on. The only opinion i have on coolant is for DEX-Cool. I hate the stuff, mainly because of all the GM vehicles I have worked on. I have seen what it does to gaskets inside the motor.

I called Stevinson, and head gaskets run $38 each, and $.97 for each head bolt.

I am going to go order them today, and hopefully have them on Friday. Fun weekend project before finals!!!
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Old 12-08-2010, 12:01 PM   #16
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Quote:
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Yea, Robbie is kinda funny that way. There is no proof that red eats gaskets. There is proof that toyota has had issues with the composit gaskets out of the early 90s. The gasket issues really were limited to the 22r (not as often), 3vz, and 1fz. The car model line-up didn't suffer head gaskets issues like the trucks did (they also ran red coolant). I will not run anything other then red, most green coolants run compounds that are proven harmfull to toyota water pump seals (by manufacturer research).
INTERESTING!!! I've never run the red, but I'm now curious to see what I can find out. The two people I trust most on engines disagree, that can't be good.
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Old 12-08-2010, 01:22 PM   #17
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I have always run red and yet to have it cause any gasket issues.
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Old 12-08-2010, 01:48 PM   #18
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I work on a 1989 3vz 2wheel pickup that has over 500k miles on the OEM gaskets. The engine is untouched other then t-belts, water pumps, crank and cam seals, and a rear main seal. It has only ever run red coolant. If red caused head gaskets to blow?????
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Old 12-08-2010, 04:54 PM   #19
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I work on a 1989 3vz 2wheel pickup that has over 500k miles on the OEM gaskets. The engine is untouched other then t-belts, water pumps, crank and cam seals, and a rear main seal. It has only ever run red coolant. If red caused head gaskets to blow?????
wasn't saying I was right, just confused. Robbie usually has good evidence that back his opinions. Obviously your experience is different, and just as valid. Not trying to step on toes.
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Old 12-09-2010, 08:08 AM   #20
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You were supposed to call me a liar as no 3.0l should ever be able to make it 500k miles. You wern't stepping on toes at all, just offering different opinion.

As for Robbie's basis of why head gaskets blow. Just one piece to a puzzle that will never be solved as it really doesn't effect that much of the product line. Just the poeple on MUD. I now think the IH8MUD is now the reason headgaskets blow.
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Old 12-10-2010, 09:00 PM   #21
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Well when I ordered my gaskets and bolts at Stevenson, there was only one option for the head gaskets. One guy there told me that it would be a graphite composite. I went in today, and only one side had come in, but it was MLS!!!

Other problem I noticed is that my tensioner pulley is beginning to loose grease. Not supposed to do that after 2000 miles. Toyota wants $100 my cost for the bearing alone. I will be getting the Gates timing component kit from work to fix this problem.

The only main "wearable" part that I did not replace on my motor was the oil pump. I think that while I am into the motor as far as I am, I am going to replace it with a new one from Toyota. Its $170 for a new one.
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Old 12-30-2010, 09:42 AM   #22
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Well after a couple weeks of down time, and lack of money, I have finally acquired all the parts I wanted/needed to get for the truck.

I was not sure where I was burning coolant at, so since I used a cheap ebay gasket kit in my rebuild I decided to replace the head gaskets with OEM Toyota MLS gaskets, and opted for the complete intake manifold gasket kit from Fel-pro. I also picked up a new OEM oil pump since this motor had 250k on it at the time of the rebuild, and I am already in far enough that its not too big of a hassle.

In the process of taking the timing belt off during disassembly, I noticed that my tensioner pulley was leaking grease out of it, and my timing belt had small patches of rubber that had built up on it, after only 2k miles on it. I assume this is small pieces of the belt that had accumulated together and been pressed onto the belt by the pulleys. I decided that this was not a good thing for only 2k miles, and bought a Gates timing kit with new pulleys and belt to replace the cheap ones I put on it.

**NOTE: Let this be a lesson to all of you out there...

Don't use cheap shit unless you want to spend time fixing it later. Time is money, so do it right the first time!!

After further inspection, it looks like it was my lower intake manifold gasket that was leaking coolant into the #5 cylinder. I noticed that the exhaust port was wet which could indicate either a head gasket leak, or the intake manifold gasket. It was the wet port on the intake side of cylinder #5 that gave it away. So it turns out I may not have needed to replace the head gaskets, but I am glad I did anyways. I have quality MLS gaskets on it now and it only took about 3 hours to get the heads off, cleaned up, and put back together.

Here is the wet exhaust manifold #5 port




Coolant in cylinder #5


Wet intake port #5


Old intake manifold gasket and part that failed




Old Headgasket


New Headgasket


New oil pump, dipstick hole tapped and plugged




New MLS Fel-pro intake manifold gaskets




And.... Current state of the truck due to the damn snow cutting me short this morning


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