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'93 Ls400 - Died


Paul Sherman
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:cries:

Hi all, I need some help.

'93 Lexus LS 400, 198K miles on it.

We went out Sunday morning to go to breakfast and when I

started my Lexus, it ran real rough. Hoping it was a cold weather

fluke (9 degrees out), we limped it to breakfast and back home.

I noticed that the tach would work fine when the engine wasn't

under acceleration, but as soon as I touched the gas the tach would

drive to zero RPM (engine was accelerating, poorly).

We also noticed a 'burning plastic' smell and some smoke coming

from under the hood on the driver's side. There wasn't enough of it

to confirm where it was coming from.

Hoping for an obvious ignition problem, I took a quick look Sunday,

but couldn't find anything. Had to go to Philly on business early Monday,

and just got back late last night.

This morning, I tried to fire it up to take into a mechanic, now it

won't start at all. It's being towed in as we speak.

Any ideas?

Side note: The mechanic the LS is going to seems comfortable with

working on it and was recommended by my regular mechanic.

(He felt this was more than he could handle - big points for honesty).

I'll let y'all know how he does.

Paul

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I'm not really sure but good luck man! Sounds like a misfire though, so it could be anything from a bad spark plug or wire, to a distributor, to a rotor, to a coolant tempature sensor.

Did it ever act up before? Like barely misfire, get poor gas mileage, etc?

One weird thing though, ls400's are pretty simple beasts. Most mechanics are fine working on it. Oh well, I'm sure your ls will be back on the road in no time! :)

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Hmmm, now that you mention it....

It did occaisionally misfire when going up a hill.

The mileage - I'm unsure, it MAY have been getting worse.

It's hard to tell, as my daily commute is a lot of stop and go,

so the mileage has never been great. It did seem to have

dropped off a bit lately, but with our stretch of cold weather,

it took longer to warm up.

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An update:

Due to cold weather breakdowns and a water main break under their lot, it

took the mechanic a few days to get to the Lexus, but they did. here's

what they found:

One of the coils failed. Also, apparently the previous owner hadn't

given the car a tune up when he changed the timing belt, so it is

due. The biggest scare is the reduced compression from all the

raw gas flushing the oil out of the cylinders (no ignition, the fuel

has to go somewhere...). Luckily (knock on wood), there appears

to be no damage to the cylinders/rings, re-oiling will bring the

compression back up to snuff.

So, a FULL tune up and oil change (gas in the oil) appear to

do the trick. I'll know for sure today, as that's when they're

supposed to be done.

Also, if this guy works out, we may have another recommendation

for an indy mechanic in the St. Louis area.

Paul

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  • 2 weeks later...

OK, final update while I'm thinking of it.

Full tune-up and an oil change, driver's bank re-oil and the

Lexus is back up and running. All by an indy mechanic in

south St. Louis county. The name is Affton Auto Electric,

the owner's name is Mike.

It was a bit expensive ($1200 total), but well worth it.

My garage is full of street rod, the weather was COLD

and icy, and frankly, I didn't have the time to do the work

myself. It was nice to climb back in the car and go after

8 days in my '69 Chevy truck (reliable, but very cold

blooded - no fun in that weather).

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