Jump to content


Just Buying A 1990 Ls400


Nataphen
 Share

Recommended Posts

This is my first post here, and I just wanted to introduce myself and ask a couple of questions.

My name is Nathan, I live in Tyler, TX, and I'm going to pick up my LS400 on Monday from a former boss/good friend of mine. I'd like to say hello to everyone, and I'm sure that I'll learn a lot here. I was looking for a good sized car (not an SUV fan) that's reliable and wasn't going to kill my budget. I'm about to get married this Spring, hence the need to watch the budget, and my fiance has two children, hence the need for a family car! :)

I have always believed in subscribing to forums to learn about the cars that I've owned, or even that I was just considering to buy, and I thank anyone here in advance for any information that I learn here. Being informed helps solve SO many problems, before they even start at times.

I instantly loved the car, very smooth ride, great build quality, and all servicing records. It's got the be in the best shape of any 17 year old car that I've seen. The only questions that I have thus far are:

#1. Are there any preventive maintenance tips or "must have" mods to help this car last as long as possible?

#2. Is there any relatively simple way to narrow the gap between the early 249hp motor and the later 290hp motor?

Again, glad to be here and thanks in advance for any help!

Nate

Link to comment
Share on other sites

in this 4r, i dont know of any special but simly regular preventive maintenance makes the car last

no idea about your question 2, as i think putting a turbo charger on it would not be a "relatively simple way". an electric turbo definitely wont work

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Anyone?

VVT (variable valve timing) was added in the 98 1UZFE to get the 190 HP rating, a sizeable engineering task, not quite a bolt on, and it got a 5 speed auto trans. For Preventive maintenance, I would keep the oil changed to the factory interval using the lower of the 2 figures (extreme means normal US stop and go short haul trips) and flush the trans with T4 TRans fluid ONLY, probably every 60k miles and upon receiving the car as well as an oil change from Lexus, they will be able to tell you exactly what it needs as they have the service records as well as the experience to tell if suspension bushings are going bad. They can get expensive but read up on them and youll come out ahead of any factory service you may want to get. Of course the LCD in the A/C and rear view mirror will probably start to bleed if not already, but are not that big a deal. Keep your tires, tank and oil filled and you'll have a lot of years ahead of you. Welcome aboard!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thanks a lot guys. I'm not trying to make the car fast, 250hp will be just fine for what I need the car for. I was just wondering if there was something that was changed in the later models that would be an easy swap for a little more power. I love the car, and the original owner said that it hasn't given him any problems. He bought it brand new in '90. I'm sure that it will last a long time and be a great car for us.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Netaphan,

On my 1991 I've replaced..

AC system, expensive.. $850 for just the compressor. So with freon/o-rings evaporator rec/drier an ac rebuild costs about $1500..LOL... If this has never been changed that would be something to "save up" for...you gotta pay to pimp

- PS pump. They will leak on older LS's and leak on the alternator ruining the alternator.. You'lll know if it is leaking bad enough to drip on the garage floor.. If not, it probably has been changed. I would guess it's been changed

- 1990 you're going to have suspension bushings probably worn out.. Specifically lower ball joints on the front and rear carrier arm bushings.. Grab the rear carrier arms if they twist they are worn out, but neither of these are mission critical, they just help stabilize the car as it floats

- No other really weak areas.. Like the others say, for sure use Toyota type 4 transmission fluid.. If you use any other fluid you will get torque converter shutter.. when driving on interstate, if you punch it a little as the torque converter shifts down, it will shutter, kind of skip or shutter for 2 seconds... If the tranny has mercon/dextron it will do this, has to have toyota tranny fluid..

My AC went out at about 130K, not too bad for the original system, it's just that that compressor is 3x the price of other cars..LOL..

But if you do your own suspension work the LS is a great car and brakes are really easy and it is a logical car to work on.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Oh yeah.. The LCD temp/time display.. I had to replace that also, but again cosmetic and doesn't affect the funcitoning of the car.. Sent the unit in to the guy on this board in Claifornia, he does a good job for about $225 or so I think .

And I had to replace the driver side power window motor and the courtesy light switches in the doors as they corroded, but I've had the car for 8 years and driven 60K and it still drives better than a new car and with a new AC and suspension, the car is really like a new car, it's unbelievable..

Just keep those leather seats cleaned and oiled.. Use Lexol.. Those seats love lexol...

I also had to replace the seat cushions on the bottom of the front seats, mine got really hard and the cushions' just wore out.. I went to the junkyard and took apart some grey leather seats from a Lincoln Continental, perfect fit and perfect color match, and the bottoms are much softer and I love them now.. I'm sure the lexus seats were soft when new, but the bolster cushions were just gone.. I could have paid a shop to put in new bolsters, but the junyyard seats where way cheaper and I love all the cushy cushion of the lincoln..

Link to comment
Share on other sites


Lots of good tips. I'm going to take this Saturday and check everything out that you guys have told me about. The suspension feels pretty solid, but I'm going to jack it up and go over it really well. If there is anything else that anyone can think of, just let me know. Thanks for all the info. :cheers:

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well, the AC doesn't show any sign of problems, the PS pump is not leaking at all, and none of the LCDs are bleeding or getting hard to read. That's all that I've gotten to check so far. Seems to be in great shape.

Just a quick n00b question, does the ECT control really make any difference either way? I guess that I would prefer the "power" setting that has better acceleration, but has anyone actually tested it in acceleration both ways AND for fuel economy both ways? Does it really matter which one that it's on or is it more of a gimmick?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Well, the AC doesn't show any sign of problems, the PS pump is not leaking at all, and none of the LCDs are bleeding or getting hard to read. That's all that I've gotten to check so far. Seems to be in great shape.

Just a quick n00b question, does the ECT control really make any difference either way? I guess that I would prefer the "power" setting that has better acceleration, but has anyone actually tested it in acceleration both ways AND for fuel economy both ways? Does it really matter which one that it's on or is it more of a gimmick?

Owner's manual states you should leave it in "normal" mode for better fuel economy. I have left my car in "power" mode for a couple of days before, the only time I noticed faster acceleration is going onto the highway. It is a noticeble difference there, but not worth it in my opinion if it affects fuel economy. I did not notice much difference in acceleration during regular city driving.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Good advice, but please do not put the Lexol on any of the vinyl... such as the door panels, instrument panel, etc. I was told to use it on my entire interior... within a week, my dash hardened and I had numerous interior "ticks and pops", on what had been a 100% quiet car a week before. The dash and door vinyl was as hard as a rock. There was no other explanation other than the Lexol.

Just keep those leather seats cleaned and oiled.. Use Lexol.. Those seats love lexol...
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share



×
×
  • Create New...

Forums


News


Membership