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Jim Grant Tech Tips Jim Grant Tech Tips
A collection of helpful articles based on reader submissions
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Below is a collection of Jim Grant's Tech Tips sorted by Vehicle Make. These Tech Tips were answers to questions submitted to Jim by users over the course of many years.
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Lincoln - Mercury
  Jim Grant's Tech Tips

95 Toyota 4Runner, Service Engine Soon Light
Q: I'm looking for information concerning my Ď95 Toyota 4Runner. After numerous times to almost constantly, the Service Engine Soon light coming on, I have adjusted the valves, tuned up the engine several times, replaced both oxygen sensors more than once. The latest information I received was Code 25, meaning burnt valve in number six. I just noticed tonight though, that moisture is dropping from the muffler after driving for 20 miles or so. I was told that it could possibly be a blown head gasket. I am a single mom and could sure use some straight answers. I have already put over a grand into it in the past ten months. Thanks for any advice you can give me.

A: Iím pretty impressed that a Toyota computer can tell you that a valve in your engine is burnt, especially when the Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC) reported is for the engine running too lean, meaning itís not getting enough fuel. If an engine is running too lean all the new oxygen sensors in the world wonít fix it! Which brings up the question: Why all the tune-ups???? Did someone tell you the Check Engine Light meant you needed a tune-up? If so, youíre big time in the wrong repair shop, get out fast!!!! Toyota computers are pretty relaxed. What I mean is the computer doesnít turn the Check Engine Light on until it is truly convinced that there is a problem. Anyone that tries to sell you service or repairs without asking the computer, "first" what the problem is, is doing you serious misjustice! This concern about a bad head gasket and possible bad valve should be addressed first. Water dripping from the exhaust of a vehicle is normal. What isnít normal is if the coolant level keeps dropping. If coolant has to be added regularly then have the coolant loss diagnosed first. A compression test will confirm if you have a bad valve or not. Either a bad valve or head gasket requires major engine work. No amount of tune-up or computer parts will correct for engine problems. The time for guess work is over, you need to find a qualified repair facility, be it independent or dealer, to diagnose your problems first. Then install only the parts needed to correctly repair your vehicle.

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