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modenaf1

Help! Engine Problems On A 1996 Es300

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Hey everyone, sorry but I am a complete newbie to Lexus. I am currently looking at picking up a 1996 ES300 for dirt cheap. It has 200,000 miles on it and is in pretty good condition, though it does have some engine issues that concern me.

The owner claims the car has not had a timing belt done since he can remember, and he has had the car for 7 years and that it probably needs it done soon. I looked it up and I guess the 1MZ-FE in the '96 is NOT an interference engine. The car has what looks to be fairly decent oil in it that has been changed within the last 2000 miles or so and the level is fine. Here is the thing though, the engine makes a clacking noise at around 2000 RPM. The noise goes completely away below or above this 300-400 rpm window. At first I thought it was rod knock, but then it would do it all the time right? Could this have to do with the timing belt perhaps? At around this time or at higher RPMs, the check engine light goes from consistent on, to flashing, I guess meaning a misfire. I will have to get my code reader out tomorrow to see the exact codes.

What do you guys think about this? If the timing belt was broken wouldn't the car not run at all? Maybe its possible it hasn't broken but it has jumped time causing the car to run rough?

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Hey everyone, sorry but I am a complete newbie to Lexus. I am currently looking at picking up a 1996 ES300 for dirt cheap. It has 200,000 miles on it and is in pretty good condition, though it does have some engine issues that concern me.

The owner claims the car has not had a timing belt done since he can remember, and he has had the car for 7 years and that it probably needs it done soon. I looked it up and I guess the 1MZ-FE in the '96 is NOT an interference engine. The car has what looks to be fairly decent oil in it that has been changed within the last 2000 miles or so and the level is fine. Here is the thing though, the engine makes a clacking noise at around 2000 RPM. The noise goes completely away below or above this 300-400 rpm window. At first I thought it was rod knock, but then it would do it all the time right? Could this have to do with the timing belt perhaps? At around this time or at higher RPMs, the check engine light goes from consistent on, to flashing, I guess meaning a misfire. I will have to get my code reader out tomorrow to see the exact codes.

What do you guys think about this? If the timing belt was broken wouldn't the car not run at all? Maybe its possible it hasn't broken but it has jumped time causing the car to run rough?

If the timing belt breaks, then the car will stop running. If it jumped, it would be running real rough if at all. Get a listening device (stethescope, short piece of garden hose) and try to localize the sound while someone revs it up to the clacking range. That should give you a clue. Rod knock is possible, so is a bad lifter. Let us know what the codes are, and if there are other symptoms (smoke,hesitation, oil loss, poor mpg).

Depending on the price, some engine work wouldn't be such a bad thing, particularly if the car is "clean."

Being only into es300's for a few months myself, I'd like to hear from others about what the "fatal" problems (vrs manageble ones) might be for this car.

LL

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