Last post on Jan 29, 2013 at 4:40 PM
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Toyota Camry, Auto Repair
#338 of 727 1994 Camry Not Starting after Coil Replacement
Dec 15, 2008 (12:14 am)
So, my 1994 Toyota Camry 4-Cyl (Engine 5S-FE) was recently having intermittent issues starting and operating. The difficulties came either starting cold or hot, sometimes I would need to turn the key longer than necessary when starting cold, or would need to wait 30-45 minutes to start hot. Once, during operation at about 35mph, the engine stopped firing in mid drive.
Because of how intermittent the problems were, I believed it was an electrical issue. I noticed that the battery terminals were fairly corroded, so I pulled the battery and cleaned both the contacts and the terminals.
I pulled the sparks, found no evidence of corrosion or damage. They are only 15,000 miles old. I checked continuity in the cables to the distributor cap, and everything checked out fine.
I pulled the rotor and dust cover from the distributor, removed the positive and negative terminals and checked the primary resistance on the Internal Ignition Coil. It tested around 1.9ohms, where specs for a good one are 0.4-0.5 ohms, so I replaced the Coil. This process required removal and reinstallation of the distributor.
I reconnected all electrical relays and went to turn the car on. When I go to start the car, the lights on the clock dim, along with a few other HUD lights, but the starter does not turn over at all. Also, there is now a repetitive clicking sound at the front of the cabin, and the red LED below the wheel is blinking on and off, so I believe this may have to do with the latent security system in the car.
What would cause the problems I am experiencing here?
#339 of 727 Re: 1994 Camry Not Starting after Coil Replacement [cthomas86]
Dec 15, 2008 (6:05 am)
Sounds like a basic electrical problem. Check your battery terminal connections, and the voltage of the battery. Should be about 13+ volts, like 13.5-14.0 volts. If you don't have the correct voltage, then have an autoparts chain run a load test on your battery and alternato (usually a free test), to check that the alternator is putting out the current and voltaget needed to charge the battery, and the battery is holding the charge.
If both of those are okay, then other end of the ground cable(non-battery end), to make sure there isn't any corrosion there. You can also check the resistance of that cable to make sure you aren't dropping any voltage.
Then check the positive cable connection at the starter, to make sure there isn't any corrosion there either and it is a good tight connection. Caution to disconnect the battery while you are doing that, so that you (or your wrench) don't become the short to frame ground.
Repetitive clicking can be a relay, which doesn't have enough voltage to stay latched.
#340 of 727 Re: 1994 Camry Not Starting after Coil Replacement [kiawah]
Dec 15, 2008 (10:04 pm)
So it turns out my third-party security system had an starter lockout relay. When I pulled the battery, it reset and armed the security system, which then kept my car from starting. I pulled the manual and set it to Valet mode, was able to start the car again.
But, after idle operation for 5-10 minutes, my engine dies. No engine codes, no check engine light, it just stops firing. I connected the jumpers to test for the fuel pump being non-operational, but I was able to turn the fuel pump on. I also decided to try leaving the ignition on to see if I could heat up the Ignitor module. When I did this, 4 out of 5 times the car would not start at all. So for right now, I am guessing that it might be a bad Ignitor.
#341 of 727 Re: 1994 Camry Not Starting after Coil Replacement [cthomas86]
Dec 16, 2008 (4:58 am)
does the security system turn the ignition off?
#342 of 727 Re: 1994 Camry Not Starting after Coil Replacement [kiawah]
Dec 16, 2008 (5:54 am)
It has a starter disable relay for when it is armed.
Actually, I forgot to check the internal resistance of the pickup coil as well. Turns out that the pickup coil is off its mark as well. Maximum internal resistance from G+ to G- terminals should be 275ohms, but mine is around 305ohms, so it looks like I may need a new distributor instead.
#343 of 727 Re: 1994 Camry Not Starting after Coil Replacement [cthomas86]
Dec 17, 2008 (5:00 am)
I'm confused over your description of 'not starting'.
Are you saying that the starter does not spin up and crank over the engine? or, are you saying that the starter spins, engages the engine, turns the engine, but the engine doesn't fire up and run?
If your security system has a relay which stops the starter from getting it's power, then it won't spin and the engine won't crank.
Which no-start symptom do you have?
#344 of 727 Re: 1994 Camry Not Starting after Coil Replacement [kiawah]
Dec 17, 2008 (8:57 am)
The starter would not spin. That problem is gone because I just disarmed the security system and everything was cool.
Having determined that the pickup coil was out of spec, I replaced the distributor, re-timed the engine, and drove the car yesterday for about 120 miles. Everything was great, except I noticed that it seems to lack power. Could that be an issue with the timing? Maybe I timed it incorrectly, not sure.
I was driving it this morning down the Interstate, and the Check Engine light came on. The car did not stop driving, but something is definitely amiss, so I need to find a table of engine codes and which OBD pins I need to connect to be able to read them.
#345 of 727 Re: 1994 Camry Not Starting after Coil Replacement [cthomas86]
Dec 17, 2008 (10:01 am)
Yes, I would suspect the timing is off. That could account for both the loss of power, and the check engine light on (due to fuel not being completely burned).
You are probably also getting poor gas mileage.
#346 of 727 Re: 1994 Camry Not Starting after Coil Replacement [kiawah]
Dec 17, 2008 (2:51 pm)
I have a code manual, and if the timing is off, I would move the distributor slightly in the opposite direction of rotation( advancing timing).
If you do this while running, you can hear the engine rev up and down. Always mark the distributor at the pad where it mounts on the engine for a good reference point. Then move off this reference in 1/16 inch increments.
Checking codes for the 5S- engine, the manual shows the Data Link Connector at the brake master cylinder in the engine compartment next to the left fender. Opening the cover lid, you should see terminals in groups left and right. The group on the left is the diagnostic terminals. The upper right corner terminal and the one under neath it, is the diagnostic terminals. Also the terminal to the left of the one underneath.
Short the terminal to the left to the terminal in the upper corner. Have the key on, but engine NOT running. Remove the jumper AFTER turning key off.
The codes flash in .5 second flashes. If 2 is flashed, it takes 1 second. Then you will get a pause of 1.5 seconds and if their is a second digit it will flash. If its is 5, the light will flash 5x in 2.5 seconds. 25 is lean mixture. 3 is ignition signal.
Codes start at 1 and go to 85 on your model. After both digits flash you get a 2.5 second pause and another code may flash if it is stored. This code retrieval repeats continuously until all codes have flashed. Then after 4.5 second pause it starts all over with the 1st code again.
#347 of 727 02 Camry Heater Box Assembly Replacement
Dec 20, 2008 (6:48 am)
My 02 Camry has 59,300 miles. In past 6 wks, the heat only comes out of the top (dash) vents. No Heat from the bottom, regardless of the settings on the dial. Dealer sez the heater box assembly needs to be replaced which means the dash wud have to be removed. Estimate for parts and labor $2997!!! LOL. Has anyone had a similar problem? Any suggestions (other than live with it).