Help-need advice-what to do 91 pickup

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Apr 13, 2009
Bar Harbor, Maine
I have a 91 pickup/22RE engine. Bought it new 18 years ago when I first started driving. I love this truck. Head gasket blew and timing chain is definately becoming a problem.

I'll admit it - I don't have a heck of a lot of chops when it comes to wrenching, but am interested in getting better. Thinking I have three choices:

a. sell the truck (about 1000 USD??) and invest in something else

b. have a shop that I trust drop a refurbished 22RE in there for 3000 or so

c. get some help ... work toward replacing head and/or headgasket and timing chain and/or timing chain tensioner.

Any thoughts?
I vote #3. Tell us where you live, so someone can volunteer to give you a hand. If you're in New England, please consider my garage available.
Welcome to Mud Darron!! :flipoff2: Glad to have you! :D

Here's the bottom line.... If you have a 2nd vehicle... do it yourself! It's not a hard job at all, it just takes time... You'll just need the helpful advice you find here, and a decent set of tools... :D

Yes, a location would be good. :cheers:
Thanks for the quick response!!

I'm in north Georgia. And, especially after your thoughts, am leaning toward option #3. I've got a friend that can check my cylinder compression and will start there. Will also start with lots of go photo documentation so I can backtrack if necessary. Might have to reach out to y'all with some (many) follow up questions-
Thanks again!
Is your truck a 4wd? And feel free to ask any questions you have. Also, check out the FAQ thread here, there's lots of good info in there! :cheers:

As long as you're photo documenting the engine, you might as well take some pics of the truck for us.... :D
If you decide on #2, don't have a 'ready-made' rebuilt dropped in(ask me how I know), but have a real mechanic/engine rebuilding place rebuild your engine. Find one with a good reputation and a decent warranty like 1 year+unlimited miles. Good luck whichever you decide.
i agree with pluton dont buy a ( ready rebuilt) 22re.i did this once early on in my toyota days and it cost a fortune and the motor blew a head gasket anyway and there idea of a warranty was to mail me a full gasket set........Option #3 you can do this get a full gasket set,new oil and water pumps,and a timing chain set and read up on the job before you start and by the end youre wrenching chops will be better
Welcome Darron!

Couple things:
  1. The original owner?!?! That's more awesome than a fresh brownie.
  2. Option C. Rebuild it yourself. It's not that hard, and you will really feel better about it knowing that you did it, and that you could do it again if you had to.
  3. Where are the pictures?

You could do the timing chain/tensioner replacement (including a new water pump, main crank seal, etc...) in a long weekend. Really. Even if you haven't done it before. Throw in the head gasket, and you're talking a bit more time, but not all that bad. And awful lot of the head gasket replacement is removing the timing chain stuff, so it's definitely a "while you're in there" kind of thing.

Buy a quailty timing chain set (I think LC Engineering sells them for $175), a Toyota water pump, a few Toyota seals, and start unbolting things. Little help from the manual and you'll have your engine taken apart in no time!

Did I mention we want to see pictures?

Agreed, do it yourslef. You can knock out the chain and the head gasket in one weekend. It will be a really frustrating, greesy, agrivating, knuckle busting experience that you will remeber forever and will really help create a bond between you and your rig. Remember when your at Toyota getting parts to get Toyota brand gasket maker, tell them it is for the timing chain cover and they will get you the right stuff, cover both sides of the timing cover gasket in that stuff so you wont have to take it all apart and do it over again.(Been there done that) If the guys at your local dealership are cool they will give you a print out of a step by step process(with pictures!) of how to do the timing chain that will also tell you how to do the head gasket.(removing the head is a step in the process as recomended by toyota) Good luck and dont hesitate to ask for help(just remeber to bring pictures with your questions)
we have spoken

replace the chain and guides your self.

you gotta rip the oil pan off to get all the crittters out.
if you got a lift on it, it will be easy, other wise you gotta unbolt only the diff in 3 spots to get it down a little bit.

its really easy to do. just do home work on it, and ask a lot. cause its also just as easy to mess up.
Another option you may want to look into is tossing in a Tacoma 3rz 4cyl.
Thanks - option C/3 it is!

First off - love this site. Thanks for all the responses.
Second-sorry, for no photos yet.
Third - came close to buting an 86 4runner
Fourth- didn't buy the 4runner and will try it on my own...and will document my successes and failures along the way.

Thanks all-

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