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Noob With A '91 Ls


Blake_batonrouge
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Hey guys,

This is the first time I have ever posted on one of these things. I just picked up a 91 LS with 304,000 miles on it for $25. The engine is making a tapping noise, and also I am having some transmission issues (it doesn't always find the gear and the O/D light blinks). I have looked around and loved the site!!!! Any suggestions would be a great help.

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Awesome buy dude, you should be able to get another 100k out of her if you treat her like a lady ;) hahaha

Get your tranny flushed, better yet pull the pan and clean things up. The trannys are bulletproof. as for the tapping, the 1UZFE if notorious for a light tapping noise, but if it's more than that, maybe get your valves adjusted? Possible treatment of seafoam, and clean the throttlebody, blow off the EGR filter.

Here's a couple of my old posts

SEAFOAM

http://us.lexusownersclub.com/forums/index...&hl=seafoam

THROTTLE BODY CLEANING

http://us.lexusownersclub.com/forums/index...l=throttle+body

http://www.lexls.com/tutorials/

EGR

http://www.lexls.com/tutorials/emission/egrfilter.html

Good luck man. Post up some pics i want to see this beast.

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Okay....After seeing jcrome04's link to the seafoaming....I realized that I did it wrong. I sucked the seafoam in through a hose right under the lexus symbol and the the word lexus. What did I ruin?

Also another question.......My car will shift fine when cold but once the trans warms up, the car will shift to 4th gear and just stay there also setting off the O/D light to blinking. There is also generic fluid in the transmission. Should I be risking a flush and fill with 300k on the transmission? I am trying not to have to drop a new tranny in the car.

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Should I be risking a flush and fill with 300k on the transmission? I am trying not to have to drop a new tranny in the car.

Welcome to the board.

General consensus around here seems to be that the pressure flush and fill is not good for the transmission, better to do multiple drain and refills (exchanges 2 quarts per time). Total volume is around 8 quarts so you get a good clean out after a few goes. The correct toyota type 4 fluid is not cheap though!

Also check out the Lexls website on how to read the onboard diagnostics (OBDI) fault codes, thats what your transmission is trying to communicate to you when it blinks. If you put the shorting wire into the diagnostics connector the code will blink out and you can post the info here and we will give you details of whats gone wrong.

Yup, you got a bargain if you are patient enough to sort out the little bugs it will have.

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Blake,

I believe that your transmission issue is a sticking solenoid #2. This is reasonably common on higher mileage LS400s. I think if you order the part online ($150-$200), you can install yourself or have a shop do it. Then a flush with Toyota T-IV and the transmission will probably go for as long as you need it to.

I imagine your ticking is the common valvetrain noise and/or fuel injectors and is pretty innocuous.

Enjoy your car!

Jeff

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Ok, first thing to do, to avoid any possible wild goose chasing..... open your trunk.... look along the hinges.... find a tiny black wire around the hinge area.... make sure it's not broken or the insulation isn't shaved & exposing the wire itself. That little black wire is the #1 cause of wierd things with the transmission and lighting "brake lights, reverse lights, etc..". After that, and if the wire is in good shape, then it's time to get that generic fluid out of the tranny, pronto. Swing by your local Toyota dealership with a $50 and buy a case of toyota tranny fluid. Trust me, you want the case. Also, buy yourself a couple transmission pan crush washers, the counter guy will know exactly what you need. Don't go to the Lexus dealer, you'll pay 30% more the exact same thing. HINT: Buy the tranny fluid first, without telling him you have a Lexus. Some Toyota dealers have gotten wise to this, and will put a $5 surcharge on your bill for Lexus parts/service. The one here in Durham, NC, does this.

Now, go home, put the car on ramps, crawl under it, and find the transmission pan. It is located in the center of the car, right under the center counsol. You'll see a drain bolt. Open it up, and let it drain. It should drain 2 quarts...but with generic in there, there's no telling. When it's done draining, put the plug back on with new crush washer. Get a long necked funnel, and fill the car up with exactly 2 quarts "case comes with 10 individual quarts". When done, take a gentle spin around the block, to get the fluids mixing and cycling. Then do this again. You want your transmission fluid to be cherry red, like the stuff in the bottle.

That is the easiest way.

I've never dropped the pan on mine, so I can't give you any advice on how to do it. But run a search on here for it, and you should find some threads with pictures of it. I agree with Jeff about the soleniod #2 sticking. But you might be able to free it up with some genuine toyota fluid, might.

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So i should not worry about the filter? I am not sure of the maintence on the vehicle prior to my purchase. Also as far as the transmission issue, today I made it into work without it going into limp mode with the O/D light coming on. When I get home I am going to try and change out the fluid, should i do the entire case or can I do 2 quarts a day for the next 6 days?

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*******CHECK THE BLACK WIRE IN THE TRUNK FIRST**********

Do this before you do anything else. You have to get the old fluid out of the tranny and replaced with genuine toyota fluid, one way or the other. You can drop the pan and clean the filter now, or later. I think later, after you've run clean toyota fluid through the tranny and given it a chance to flush out any particles into the filter. Then, drop the pan-clean the pan-clean the filter-and replace the fluid with the amount you lost during the removal of the pan. I believe you'll probably lose about 2 to 3 quarts when you drop the pan. Draining it takes out 2 quarts, so figure another 1/2 to 1 quart dripping down from the tranny while you have the pan off.

To answer you question though about the entire case, or 2 quarts a day... I would think either way would be ok. The day between drain n' fill might allow the new fluid more time to clean up whatever is in there. But, you do want the car to sit for a little bit to cool off before you get under it. The exhaust pipes, especially the cat-converters around the tranny pan, get HOT.

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NC speaks the truth, a lot of early cars had this problem. However you did state that the OD light blinks on, which is indicative of the #2 solenoid or similar problems. Heck, check both out, its doesn't cost you anything, yet!! Filter is a nice job to get ticked off, especially if you have to open the pan up to get to some faulty parts!

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Okay, on my lunch break, I went out and checked my trunk *first time I have opened it since i got the car* are wires hanging on the right side of the trunk. Looks like an antenna connection and a giant phone jack connection. On the left is a few wires wrapped in black tape on the left hand side in a plastic bracket. Where are the wires I need to check?

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So i should not worry about the filter?
I wouldn't drop the pan just to change the filter, but if you do plan on checking the solenoids, then, it might not be a bad idea to change it. I replaced my transmission filter when my car had something like 250k miles, and the filter still looked like new.

Hinge wiring tutorial:

http://www.lexls.com/tutorials/lighting/bulbout.html

-Blake

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So i should not worry about the filter?
I wouldn't drop the pan just to change the filter, but if you do plan on checking the solenoids, then, it might not be a bad idea to change it. I replaced my transmission filter when my car had something like 250k miles, and the filter still looked like new.

Hinge wiring tutorial:

http://www.lexls.com/tutorials/lighting/bulbout.html

-Blake

I just bought a '91 ls400 2 months, excpet I paid 2500 for mine with 190k miles. I might be wrong but I think that tapping noise is the valves. They probably need to be adjusted. It was more like a ticking rather than a tapping.

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I just bought a '91 ls400 2 months, excpet I paid 2500 for mine with 190k miles. I might be wrong but I think that tapping noise is the valves. They probably need to be adjusted. It was more like a ticking rather than a tapping.

Exactly, it does sound more like a ticking noise. How hard are the valves to adjust? I am pretty good at it since I have a 72 Air-cooled beetle. Also I noticed something this morning. The car shifts fine as long as the "D" light is not lit up. It normally comes on at the same time the O/D light starts blinking. I got the fluid yesterday afternoon and I plan to start the drain/fill process today.

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I was faced with the same issue...what I would do is replace both solenoids (#1 and #2 are same part number), since you are in there anyway and based on mileage, go ahead and replace the screen. Then you can do the flush / refill routine and you will be amazed at the smoothness of your transmission. I am fairly confident that there was no damage caused to the transmission by having a non-responsive solenoid.

Try one of the online dealers (Carson, Sewell) for the solenoids...you will save big money.

Jeff

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Attached below are the workshop instructions for my '92, its a job I would do myself if I had all the tools, a comfortable clean dry warm place to work and a free day.

Very satisfying knowing its all done the way you like, and you save some money too.

I have a sticky solenoid also, but mine has only been playing up for just over a year and a half now.......

The transmission is very clever and when it detects a malfunction it changes the valve actuation method and trys its best to mask the fault.

.

valvebody.pdf

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I want to try this myself, but I am afraid I will mess this up. Do the 1 and 2 solenoids look diffrent from each other? Also do they go in diffrently from each other? The pic from the diy makes them look the same.

Sorry, the manual is over the top, you do not need to remove the valvebody. Jeff is right, you only need to do a few of the steps listed. Also his advice to change both #1 & # 2 at the same time makes some good sense. They are the same part number and you cannot mix them up.

I attached the full valvebody section because you get the bolt torques and a good overview of the system (plus someone in the future may reference this thread and find it useful).

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$25.00 - WOW, what a deal! I hope the car turns out OK. I bet it will.

As to those trunk wires, here is a photo of mine... these are the ones that NC was suggesting you check- on the left side hinge. My car appears ot have already been dealt with, despite a messy re-taping.

100_7693.jpg

Good luck!

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