Still Pinging My friends out of ideas!

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Nov 18, 2007
Here are the particulars:
Only starts to ping once good and warmed up, it's not super pronounced but you can notice it.

Here's what I have done so far:
- New NGK Toyota approved plugs gapped to .032
- New Toyota Plug wires
- New Denso Cap and Rotor
- 2 Full cycles of Redline Fuel system cleaner
- Checked timing (it's correct when jumpering the diagnostics points indicated) 3 degrees BTDC. When jumper is removed timing should sway in between 2 to 15 BTDC. At idle it tends to stay toward 3 to 8 degrees.
- New PCV Valve (Toyota)
- Tried running premium fuel (Did Not make a difference at all)
- Tested EGR valve and passes fine
- Just had an emissions test and it passed with flying colors

I don't know if it would be worth it to take it to the Toy Doctor here in Littleton CO and pay the $90 just to check it out, I'm afraid they may just give me a bunch of expensive fixes! I guess I may not have a choice but was hoping you all may have some other ideas?

Can an air filter make a difference?
This air filter is I would say in marginal shape.

Thanks again in advance! I'm still trying everything I can. I know that pinging is hard on the engine and need to figure this darn thing out!
Couple of thoughts:
  1. Are you sure it is detonation? I had a broken cat that I swore was detonation. Turns out that when it heated up and only under certain engine loads, the broken element inside the cat would rattle and sounded just like detonation pinging. I finally tracked it down with a mechanic's stethescope. Not saying that this is your issue but it could be something else.
  2. Can you manually retard the timing? You can with a 3FE not sure if you've got a 3FE or 1FZ. But if you can retard the timing say 5 degrees with premium gas and you still ping, well, maybe it's not detonation.
  3. Are you running lean? An emissions repair shop or a wideband O2 could tell you.
  4. Have a shop run a bore scope into the cylinders and see if there are deposits on the pistons that might be contributing.
If you're absolutely sure it's pinging once it's warmed and if it gets worse in the summer heat, then I have a feeling it's the carbon buildup in the combustion chamber. Mine did the same thing and got worse with the summer heat and A/C running.

Carbon buildup in the attached picture is less than two years old and it still took a putty knife to scrape it off. So, no amount of additives is going to remove this I'm afraid. :frown:

After the head gasket job, this engine made no more pinging noise, no matter how hot it was or much it was loaded down.

Good luck.

edit: the bore scope idea is a great one. You need to see how much buildup there is.
Unless the timing is not shifting(which OBDII can monitor), or a knock sensor is not working(again, OBDII should be monitoring this), check engine light burned out, computer not working right. Pinging should not happen unless, As Ali has indicated you have too much carbon build up and this needs to be removed. You can kill 2 birds with one stone it that is the case(head gasket replacement). I am sure you did not really want to hear that.
A bore scope would help confirm this.
Good luck, Robbie
I would check the TPS readings first. I had a problem with the TPS being misadjusted and it gave me some strange symptoms at just light throttle under load when hot.
I would check the TPS readings first. I had a problem with the TPS being misadjusted and it gave me some strange symptoms at just light throttle under load when hot.

I'm sorry is the TPS (Throttle Position Sensor)? And how would i read that?
Could a bad air filter or clogged air filter limit the air to the engine then in turn cause the computer to adjust fuel air ratio and timing?? Maybe she's not getting enough air?? I guess logically it makes some sense to me but I am just kind of guessing.

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