1985 FJ60 - Daily Driver Overheated for the first time, what am in for?

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Lewisville, Texas
I have owned my FJ60 for almost 2 years now and have kept up with it well.

The engine has been desmogged, and am running a webber 32/36 carb.

I have kept up with maintenance, and replaced various odds and ends as they have said hello.


Has been my only car, haven't been hard on it until now. I recently took a job about 35 miles from where I live, and for the past few weeks the car has seen consistent highway use in the 65 MPH range.

2 Days ago I had a pretty bad overheating experience on the way home from work, needle went into the red zone (never been here before in the life of owning this vehicle) and I immediately pulled to the shoulder to let her cool down.

Since the overheat, I have not been able to get the car to start, before the overheat she fired on command no problems.

I plan to do a compression test, but am wondering the best way to go about checking compression without the ability to run the engine.


From what I gather, a blown head gasket can inhibit the car from running altogether, but I don't want to take the head off without a compression test to see what i'm working with.

I took the head cover off, no peanut butter milkshake, just some pretty thick black deposit in some areas.


Would love some pointers in the right direction, i'm in the budget of doing everything myself, but want to shed some light on my situation before I start going gung-ho with parts orders.


Never had an overheating problem until now, but at the current moment the future doesn't seem too bright.

With some research I found threads on the Oil Galley Plug on the head, don't know too much about it, but will post a photo to get feedback from you guys.

Until then, enjoy this photo of my head cover.

Cheers, and thanks for the help.

Cameron

IMG_2300.JPG


IMG_8965.JPG
 
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BTW, I removed all belts and spark plugs, and turned the crank by hand, it moves freely.

A good sign, the engine is not seized, but not going to get my hopes up on the simplicity of steps foreword.

Cameron
 

micruz60

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Did you have a big cloud of steam out the tailpipe?

Check the oil level on dipstick, and antifreeze/coolant in radiator overflow. Either one milky, or oil in coolant?

Radiator cap correct for pressure testing?

Did you hear any squealing , indications of water pump fail?

And last, how many miles on the engine? The oil gunk in the valve cover is somewhat concerning, as sludge may build over time, can be cleaned out with a seafoam or distilled water steam treatment.
 

dannyvp

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I am in the process of replacing my head gasket. Not a problem at all to be honest. Much easier than I thought it would be.
Of course I don't have it running yet either……...
 
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Did you actually confirm it overheated/was hot or did the gauge just randomly spike?

Can you define “I have not been able to get the car (sic) to start”? Does the starter turn the engine over?
 
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Did you have a big cloud of steam out the tailpipe?

Check the oil level on dipstick, and antifreeze/coolant in radiator overflow. Either one milky, or oil in coolant?

Radiator cap correct for pressure testing?

Did you hear any squealing , indications of water pump fail?

And last, how many miles on the engine? The oil gunk in the valve cover is somewhat concerning, as sludge may build over time, can be cleaned out with a seafoam or distilled water steam treatment.

No steam out the tailpipe, just the expected cloud out of the hood when I pulled off of the road. Coolant was not milky.

I do have the correct radiator cap, but have yet to pressure test the cooling system. No squealing, not sure of water pump fail, just loss of power the higher the temps got. As the temp climbed I did notice a lack of power as I started to pull off the road.


Finally, Im currently at 238,355 on the OD. I went ahead and cleaned out the head cover after taking pictures, as it was a thick sludge of oil it seemed.
 
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I am in the process of replacing my head gasket. Not a problem at all to be honest. Much easier than I thought it would be.
Of course I don't have it running yet either……...
Looks like im in the market for a replacement as well. Not too worried about the job, just know it can be a bit of a bear in the time department.

Any resources you have collected to help with the process would be greatly appreciated.
 
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Did you actually confirm it overheated/was hot or did the gauge just randomly spike?

Can you define “I have not been able to get the car (sic) to start”? Does the starter turn the engine over?
Oh it definitely overheated, you know its bad when the block is steamy on a 53 degree rainy day. not fun.

Engine turns over and cranks, but It is far removed from wanting to fire.
 
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Update after my original post!

I managed to get a compression test done with a kit from autozone, took out all plugs, and just used the starter to crank the engine, no firing obviously.

and here is the news....


1 - 143
2 - 100
3 - 100
4 - 40
5 - 110
6 - 147

Im aware that they all need to be in the 150 range. Among the bad news, at least I know whats going on.

Blown head gasket for sure. Though its reassuring that the engine cranks, before moving foreword I wanted to see if anyone has any insight based on my compression readings. I have seen people that have had it worse, some with mostly 0 and 10 across the board...

My question is, though most are in the 100 range, I do have cylinder 4 at 40, which i'm wondering how much concern that brings.


Im obviously going to be doing a head gasket job, but wanted to see if it is necessary to do a valve/ ring job as well.

I wont be able to tell obviously until I get the head removed, but wanted to be proactive in what I order for when I do the job.

Ill be removing the head in the next few days to see what is going on, and will be posting photos along the way.


Any advice is greatly appreciated. Cheers.
 
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Also, does anyone have recommendations on a source for an OEM Toyota head gasket? I have found many variations online, but am curious if anyone can point me to a site or forum post that can connect me to good quality at a good price. And any recs on valves, springs, rings, ect.
 

OSS

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#4 could just have a tight exhaust valve that's causing it to leak and lose compression. It's possible that just adjusting that valve will seal it up and get the compression back. But more commonly... #4 exhaust valve is warped and can't seal any longer. Very common.

All your other compression numbers are not low enough to prevent the engine from running. Also you checked it when the engine was cold. It's supposed to be hot during the test.
But even with one dead cylinder (#4) the engine should definitely start and run pretty good. In fact, you could have had a dead #4 for months/year and not known the difference. I'd know- cuz when I bought my cruiser 32 years ago, it had a burnt exhaust valve (with very low compression on #4 like yours) but during my test drive the engine ran great and I drove it like that for months until I finally figured out what was going on.

You could try adjusting #4 valve first. Then check compression again. But removing the head on these old 2Fs is only a matter of time. Eventually they've got to be rebuilt. It's probably past due.
 
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cruisermatt

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I still don't know where you got that it was overheating from. Getting really hot does not mean overheating. Boiling coolant is overheating. A steamy engine on a rainy day is not abnormal. Water splashes up, gets boiled off.
Check your valves first. It's probably fine.
Smaller tires will help a lot for commuting like that.
 

micruz60

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What they said^^

Another suggestion- pull the distributor cap and dry out the innards with a hair dryer / heat gun, reassemble and then try to start it up.
Valve adjustments do help every 10-15,000 miles
 
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I still don't know where you got that it was overheating from. Getting really hot does not mean overheating. Boiling coolant is overheating. A steamy engine on a rainy day is not abnormal. Water splashes up, gets boiled off.
Check your valves first. It's probably fine.
Smaller tires will help a lot for commuting like that.
I should have clarified,

By steamy I meant clouds billowing from under the hood, and a replica of the ye old faithful geyser coming from the radiator when I popped the rad cap off. It definitely was an overheat. I noticed on the way to work that temps were higher than usual so I took it slow on the way there. Let it cool down while I worked my shift, but by the time I headed home the temps were in the red in a matter of 8 minutes of driving. I did notice the rad was much cooler than engine temp, not sure if I had some sort of blockage that caused the overheat.

The car was running rough as soon as the temps started to rise.

Smaller tires are on the regimen for sure, Im still rocking the same tires from the previous owner but will scale down when the time comes.
 
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What they said^^

Another suggestion- pull the distributor cap and dry out the innards with a hair dryer / heat gun, reassemble and then try to start it up.
Valve adjustments do help every 10-15,000 miles
I did take a look at the distributor as soon as I couldn't get it to fire, when I took the cap off I found that there was oil residue inside the dizzy, and promptly removed it and cleaned every surface. Dizzy O ring replacements are in order.
 

cruisermatt

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Ok, so that is a lot more descriptive of your issue. It helps to be as clear as possible upfront so we can have an easier time helping you.
I would still check the valves first as that's a quick easy step but it sounds like the head gasket is blown.
 
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#4 could just have a tight exhaust valve that's causing it to leak and lose compression. It's possible that just adjusting that valve will seal it up and get the compression back. But more commonly... #4 exhaust valve is warped and can't seal any longer. Very common.

All your other compression numbers are not low enough to prevent the engine from running. Also you checked it when the engine was cold. It's supposed to be hot during the test.
But even with one dead cylinder (#4) the engine should definitely start and run pretty good. In fact, you could have had a dead #4 for months/year and not known the difference. I'd know- cuz when I bought my cruiser 32 years ago, it had a burnt exhaust valve (with very low compression on #4 like yours) but during my test drive the engine ran great and I drove it like that for months until I finally figured out what was going on.

You could try adjusting #4 valve first. Then check compression again. But removing the head on these old 2Fs is only a matter of time. Eventually they've got to be rebuilt. It's probably past due.
Thank you for the insight! Ill check my valves tonight and keep the thread updated. I thought I was in a hole with such a low reading on cylinder 4, but will see what I can do before I get the head off to check the gasket condition.
 
Joined
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Ok, so that is a lot more descriptive of your issue. It helps to be as clear as possible upfront so we can have an easier time helping you.
I would still check the valves first as that's a quick easy step but it sounds like the head gasket is blown.
Sorry to leave details out, Ill check valves tonight and update the thread. If I may ask, a blown head gasket can for sure get in the way of the engine starting even with semi decent compression correct?
 
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