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Everything posted by pachanga

  1. As far as the battery being disconnected - I did ask about that. However - Chris (the locksmith) said there was not a need to do to do that. Once in the car and under the steering wheel and working with the jumper wires .. He used the car's battery power to operate the trunk release. I need to look at the fuse he pulled to see exactly which one it was ... however - this was not his first rodeo and he knew exactly what he needed to do. I did not want to ask too many questions - the guy really was not one who was interested in a conversation on his trade secrets.
  2. SOLVED! FIXED! I was able to get the keys out of the trunk in 20 minutes. Let's say ..some Black Magic was involved. High Tech Voodoo was involved. I was smokin'!! I was strutting around like a rooster with 20 hens looking at me... Ok.. so I sort of didn't do that. Truth is I called one locksmith who said that he didn't have the knowledge of the Lexus vehicles to get the car open without complications and he recommended a locksmith whom is the knowledge expert on Lexus and Toyota vehicles and all the ways to unlock the doors and the trunk. I called the guy ..explained the issue and he says...he can get it open.. no problem. He says he can be at the car in 30 minutes. This guy looks over the car ... pulls this gizmo thing out - slips it into the door - pops the door lock - opens the door - alarm goes off and he crawls under the dash with a jumper wire with alligator clips - waits until the alarm quits - pulls a fuse - he starts using the jumper wire and the next thing I know the trunk pops open... I was like ... Damn! 20 minutes and 4 minutes of that was waiting for the alarm to quit. The best part ... he charged me $70. Best 70 bucks I ever spent ... well ... except for that time in Tijuana with the twins. I was very impressed. He did say that a Lexus 430 SUV takes him a little more time... about 10 minutes more.
  3. I appreciate the answers and input. 1) I do not have an extra key. Basically this car I bought from a roadside dealership in one of the many small car lots on the side of roads that sell cars bought from auctions. It came with one off-brand key - no remote/fob. I am the author of my own mistakes in that I did not have extra keys made immediately. 2) Talked to the local Lexus dealership (Columbia, SC) No help... I said 1994 and the service guy who was probably younger than the car - was polite but said - sorry - I cannot make a key or offer any service for a 1994 LS400. I understand that logic...I went to the Ford Dealership with a problem with a 1998 Expedition and the Ford service manager - said - we do not work on any vehicle older than 2005. 3) I have "worked" on several LS400s in Pull-A-Part yards over the last two years.. I can drill out the existing trunk lock and open the trunk that way - but the 1994 tail light lens can easy be broken doing so... scratched at the least around the keyhole. I do have a complete parts 1994 LS400 I bought... the engine is bad - and I have extra body parts galore. 4) Breaking the window is an option and crawling into the car and operating the trunk release button - I believe the trunk will open. As far as the alarm.... if i get the trunk open - I will be ok with the alarm. I know i have sat in the car - key out of the ignition, doors locked and opened the trunk with the trunk release button. Reason I know - my wife goes in a store to shop...I stay in the car - lock the doors and when she comes back --- I just pop the trunk lid so she can put her packages in the trunk. Also I don't think the alarm has ever gone off in this car. My wife's 1998 LS400.... another story - that sucker will alarm if you look at the car wrong...I don't think it likes me. I opened the trunk on the 1998 with the key instead of the FOB and the alarm would go off. I may be lucky --in that the alarm system is only blinking the Alarm LED and it really doesn't work. 5) as far as letting it sit and waiting for the battery to die..... it is a brand new battery... expensive one... I bet it would be good after 6 months. So.. I am about to head over to my work (where I went stupid and locked the keys in the trunk) and see what I can do. If I am extremely lucky I will be able to get in with minimum damage... I have a secret plan that involves taking a 8 foot piece of 1/4 round stainless steel bar stock (I work at a company that has 300 CNC machines) and bar stock is everywhere from flat to round. Worst case - I break the window - or I have to drill the key lock on the trunk and open the trunk manually. This is something I have done on several occasions at junkyards on LS400s where the trunk is locked and the key is no where to be found.
  4. Well.. after reading many previous posts.... it appears the easiest way to get into the car - is to break one of the door windows, reach in and unlock the doors with the door unlock/lock switch...then use the trunk remote button to unlock the truck. Just so happens I have a complete parts car and can use a window out of it to replace the broken window. Now.. a question - which window is the best or easiest to replace? I would think the rear door windows.
  5. 1994 Lexus LS400 - Car doors are locked - I opened the trunk - and like a big dummy - I dropped my keys into the trunk and then closed the trunk lid. So - the keys are in the trunk - the car doors are locked. I called Pop a lock - the guy said he can open the door - BUT... he thinks the alarm will go off disabling the car - and at the same time disabling the inside trunk release and thus I am he said... very possibly up the creek in a wire boat without a paddle. So question - will the electric trunk release be disabled when he opens the door without a key? Is there a way to avoid the alarm system when he opens the door? is there a time limit before the alarm goes off?
  6. 1994 Lexus LS400 - 151K miles This past week - and here in the middle of SC - the weather has been hot - 100 degrees all weekend and this week so far. Which is the reason I chose to have the timing belt changed by a local shop verses me doing it. I do not have a shop with AC to do the work in comfort. So - and honestly I thought the repair bill was actually reasonable.. I was pleased with the work and the cost. So here is the list of work done and the cost. Timing belt changed. Belt plus misc parts - cam followers New set of Spark Plugs New Spark Plug Wires - New Water Pump - New idler and tensioner pulleys New serpentine belt gaskets Misc shop supplies.. labor Cost = $1162.00 What say ye? Should have I performed the work myself and sweated like a stuck pig on a split? Or.. ??
  7. I spotted this photo on a website ... that looks like a LS400 V8 engine ...
  8. I only found The Toyota Type IV at my local Lexus dealer/service dept. . $80 out the door for a case. Yes.. expensive. I did find a "compatible" non-synthetic transmission fluid at Pep Boys but... I decided to go with the genuine stuff from Lexus.
  9. I have always used a camera for recording my work when I work on anything.. be it a motorcycle engine or a washing machine - Back in the day - I wore out VCRs (as I had used a VHS-C camera) by constantly rewinding and then playing a segment when I had to see how I worked on something.. When digital cameras came out ...I was able to take detailed photos then but the videos were not all that great. Now I have a Contour helmet camera which I really purchased for my off-road motorcycling adventures, but I quickly adapted it for work on mechanical and electrical issues. For my editing of the video, I purchased a hardware/software package from a company called Honestech - (Best Buy or on-line) for $79. It s easy to use when you want just segments of an particular sequence of video. Even though it is really made to convert VCR tapes to digital format (DVD or save as a mpeg file) if you already have the digital file - such as a GoPro or Contour video file - it is pretty simple to use. Amazing what these POV cameras can do for you. I wear the Contour on my head via elastic strap much like the LED flashlights you can purchase with a strap that you wear on your forehead. I wear the camera on the side of my head with a LED light on the forehead. Yes... I look like Doc Brown from "Back to the Future" but I have so far (fingers crossed) been able to put 99% of the stuff I took apart back together with the end result being positive.
  10. I have taken many photos as I take things apart... and to really top it off - I have a Contour helmet camera (like a GoPro) I have been wearing that records all disassembly work. that camera has been invaluable to help me see how something came apart - as in order of washers, nuts, wires, etc.
  11. Let's say... there are quite a few squirrels around here... and I bet a couple have been laid back snacking on nuts and having a few good laughs this week.
  12. with the parts car - where this "buzzer" is located - I did get a key with a "remote unlock" key button. It has a little button marked "lock/unlock" on the edge of the key's plastic body. When I purchased my car - the key I received was just a plain key without any buttons.. So that is where the "beep" noise comes from when unlocking or locking the car remotely.... and if you are wanting a good laugh.. picture this.. I took my wife's keys, went to her car and was pressing the buttons and with my ear pressed to the fender of her car - trying to listen to see if that is where her "beep" sound is coming from..... and my wife comes out and goes "WTH are you doing?"
  13. My 1994 LS400 is what I call is a 20 footer... get closer and the exterior flaws can be seen..... Notice the photo of the fender - the cracks in the bondo are circled. Once I get the new fender is in place - and the re-paint done.. I think it will be pretty darn sharp looking.
  14. I removed the fender and inner fender liner. I found this (look at photos) item under the fender... it is labeled "buzzer" ... what is it? ok.. it's says it is a buzzer... I assume it is a buzzer... but when does it buzz?
  15. dcfish... My wife's 1998 LS400 is pretty much off limits to me. I like to open up things and see how they work. I even look at her car and I can feel the lasers.... So.. one day I found my 1994 LS400 sitting on one those lots where the faded sign proclaiming "Honest Abe's Cars" along with the "No Credit Check" and "EZ Payments" also faded. It was sitting in the back of the gravel lot looking pretty sad. It was a spur of the moment thing.. I stopped.. saw it was not all that pretty exterior wise - but the interior was in excellent shape, the odometer said 135K, the engine cranked easily and was very smooth and quiet and it idled. Transmission shifted excellent, everything electrical and mechanically worked - so I took a chance. .. I bought a LS400 without any pedigree whatsoever. I could have bought a bucket of problems... but the poor thing actually performed pretty decently as I drove it home but it had 4 different tires on it - all were worn so bad - none of them would hold air. I suppose what I liked was that overall it was all original.. nothing aftermarket had been added not had anything been changed as far as the motor or body. Radio worked.. power antenna worked... the AC and heat controls worked. I bought a carfax on it afterwards... no mention of an accident -- but the left front fender had bondo in it.. along with the inner fender liner was missing. Obvious a fender bender occurred in it's past somewhere. However the hood was straight.. all seams were straight and even. The paint is dead. First thing I did was to change oil, filters, service the transmission, clean the body and interior. Leather interior - no tears or wear spots. I then searched craigslist for a set of factory wheels in good shape as the chrome wheels on the car were nasty, chrome peeling off, and corroded as if they had been sitting in salt water for a few years. However, no rust or corrosion on the car body or underneath anywhere. But... I have found out via researching the VIN that the chrome wheels were installed at the dealer when the car was sold along with the gold badges. I purchased a nice set of LS400 wheels from a wrecked 1993 LS400. Purchased a set of Yokohama Avid ENvigor tires to mount on the wheels and wow.. a firm ride, but will turn on a dime and give you 5 cents in change. Now.. 7 months and 7000 miles later .. I have had zero issues with the car mechanically and electrically. When I bought it .. my wife did think I was nuts then... now she thinks I am really nuts when I bought the parts car - the LS400. I wanted a good left front fender... and came home with a car with a broke engine.. but a perfect fender. . My goal is to replace the bondo'ed fender with the donor fender, and have the car re-painted with the original color ... I was not going to pay for a premium paint job, but after today - with looking at the badges and the grill from the donor car which are in excellent shape verses the faded badges on my car...I think I will go for the best paint and finish I can get ..within reason. No need to pay more for the paint than I paid for the car. But I am thinking I can bring this car up to a real nice level of originality and excellent exterior shape.
  16. I would suspect that your car has the optional air suspension (instead of the standard coil and shock suspension) and it has failed.
  17. With the issues that are happening with the engine - I really think that there should be codes stored that would at least give an idea of what is or was going on. The check engine light... has it illuminated ever? If it has - a competent mechanic with a Toyota or Lexus ODB II reader can obtain those codes. For my wife's 1998 LS400 - I purchased one ($$$$) and it has paid for itself many times in helping me diagnose issues. I suggest to not just start "trying" quick fixes - rather take the approach that it does have an issue with fuel delivery and start troubleshooting via the codes. Since you say you are definitely not an automobile mechanic - I would suggest to take the car to a shop and ask for a diagnostic review - some shops charge a small fee to offer a diagnosis which they should deduct from the repair bill if you have them do the work. The codes should be there to be read and help understand what is going on.
  18. I have a 1994 LS400 with 145K miles - it is my daily driver and in very good shape for its age except for a left front fender that was crumpled and fixed with bondo at some point in its life. After checking around for a good fender at a local pullapart yard (and I did find several) but - I found a 1994 LS400 with a broke engine for a very, very low price via craigslist.. low enough I bought the car and hauled it home immediately. My wife thinks I am nuts.. and I may be...but now I have parts galore and I can practice on removing parts from the donor car and see how the car is put together. One of the first things ..besides the fender installation and have my car painted... is to take the donor car's exhaust and perform that resonator delete thing and install the modified exhaust on my car. I attached a couple photos of the parts car... all the sheet metal is in excellent shape. Another plan is to pull the transmission and have it rebuilt even though it was said to be perfectly good before the engine died. Then I will have a spare transmission ready to go if my current one decides to quit.
  19. I have not listened to the sounds - however - a common "whine" sound that increases (in frequency) or a change in the pitch of the sound (lack of a better word) with an increase in RPMs for many kind of cars with a power steering pump low on fluid ...
  20. Mt .02 cents worth as to changing the transmission fluid. I purchased a 1994 LS400 this past June with a questionable history - no records, etc. for a very good low price. It had a 135K miles on it and basically needed a lot of TLC. Best part was the interior was in excellent shape. In the month after the purchase - I changed the engine oil and filter and I followed a procedure here on LOC forum to change the transmission fluid and filter. I dropped the pan, changed the filter and reinstalled the pan. I then located the return line from the transmission cooler going back to the transmission. I purchased from the local Lexus dealer parts depart. a case of the Type 4 transmission fluid for a cost of $80. I ran the hose that was attached to the transmission line to a five gallon bucket .. my wife would crank the car - I then monitored how much transmission fluid came out - when three quarts were pumped out - Turned engine off, and then put 3 quarts of new transmission fluid in. We did this cycle until the fluid coming out turned from a brownish color to the nice pinkish red color of the new fluid. that was approximately 10 quarts. Just to make sure - I let another quart come out and then re-attached the transmission line to the return line to the transmission. At that point, I only had to add one quart more transmission fluid for the mid-mark on the transmission dipstick to be reached. Checked all connections, pan bolts and called it it "done". Now - I like to think I could tell a difference in the drivability of the car.. well... not really. It shifted fine before I changed the fluid - however I feel better knowing that there is fresh transmission fluid in the transmission. And 5000 miles alter - no issues, no problems, engine and transmission are operating smoothly and very nicely. It went so well - we changed the transmission fluid in my wife's 1998 LS400 (178K miles) the same way. No problems have risen with changing the transmission filter and fluid in the 2000 miles she has driven it. Cost was approximately $120 bucks for each car - fluid, filter, gasket. And I also got samples (a quart at a time) as the fluid came out of the line to put in glass jars to set aside for a week to let any metals, brass, steel, dirt, etc settle to the bottom to see if there were large amount of metal or other sunstances in the fluid. The 1994 had some dark particles - maybe steel but .. not much at all .. and the 1998 LS400 was very clean... just a darker color there.
  21. well... all arguments aside... I was just really happy that the guy who did the repair work - was able to match and blend the new paint into the rest of the car, make sure all seams aligned perfectly and repair the car to the point where you cannot tell the fender and bumper were replaced. Now yes... inner fender liner is new and the headlight is new - but the guy who replaced the sheet metal, and painted it - well he gets my admiration. Even the pinstripes are perfect. And ... in the last week - I asked the guy to see if he could make the left headlight look good too and he did it gratis.... now - unless you really get close - it looks awesome. Both headlights sparkle. My wife is happy. Which makes me relaxed.
  22. yea... that topic of ''so...can we get a new headlight for the other side?" has already come up a couple of times. I have cleaned the original headlight, buffed the lens, etc... but leave it to my wife to notice that it still is not as clear as the new one. I suppose my comment of .."well maybe you could have an accident on the left side" was not exactly the right thing to say... but... I suppose somewhere somehow ...I will end up buying a new one for the left side.
  23. A SUV pulled out in front of my wife as she was driving her 1998 LS400 on a busy road. I have always told her to look for a way out in such a case - don't just panic or slam on the brakes but to look for an escape route. She actually did very well to minimize the impact but was not completely able to avoid contact. In the end - the SUV turned in front of her and across in front of her into the medium where she tagged the front wheel of the truck with her right corner of the passenger fender and headlight. The airbags did not deploy and the damage was manageable. Here is a photo of the damage and a photo of the car after repair. The total cost was $4300 - and the other driver was at fault so we did not have spend a dime. The car was repaired by a Lexus certified body shop and I can honestly say... you cannot tell that the car was damaged - other than the new headlight (which was $720) when you compare the original left side headlight to it. All parts were new Lexus parts - no aftermarket parts were used.
  24. I have a 1994 LS400 .. the Pioneer radio quit finally.. display was blacked out... finally would not turn on... I purchased a replacement Pioneer radio from a 1993 LS400 that was in a junk yard for $25. Took me 30 minutes to switch out the bad radio for the good one... You might think about checking junk yards in your area. Pull-A-Part is a good source as most cars are not "wrecks" but whole cars. Just need to sign up for the email update that Pull-A-Part will send you when they get a car in that you are after. That way you get to the car hopefully before all the good stuff is sold.