1994 Toyota Camry



January, 7, 2009 AT 11:30 PM

Electrical problem
1994 Toyota Camry 4 cyl Front Wheel Drive Automatic 140000 miles

Hi guys, 4 cylinder Toyota Camry 1994

I replaced the head gasket and put it all back together correctly but it will not start.

As a side note, a fuse was blown, the blue 100 A one that says it was for the wiring harness. (this may be attributed to the fact that I forgot to disconnect the batter until halfway to the head gasket)

I am suspecting that the problem may be with the distributor or related components.

I have a manual that discusses an ohmmeter, but I don't have one of those. It discussed checking for spark but I am not exactly sure how to do that (the spark plug wires are contained within deep rubber tubes). I also need clear instruction on how to check for spark etc… There are two different wires connected to the distributor other than the sparkplug wires. I am not sure what each of them are exactly. My question is similar to another question posted on this site, but I did not see what the solution was on that post:

Thanks for the help


24 Answers


Dave H

January, 8, 2009 AT 8:48 AM

Hello. And thanks for the donation. Much appreciated

Firstly we need to see if you are getting a spark !.

Remove a spark plug

plug it back into it's wire

hold plug and lead at rubber insulater with insulated pair of pliers (do NOT hold with hands you will get a shock)

hold bottom of plug about 1mm away from a good ground point on engine (any clean bolt head etc. Needs to be a clean ground use a bit of sandpaper if needed)

have someone crank engine over for you. You should see spark jumping across spark plug gap?

Let me know?



January, 8, 2009 AT 10:37 PM

Hi Dave, thanks for the reply,

I got spark on the one that I tested, #1 plug wire.

With all the plugs back in, and the engine is turned over, it does not start but it sound a little like sporadic sputtering.

What should I do next.


Dave H

January, 9, 2009 AT 6:15 AM

Ok so we are getting spark .. just check you are getting fuel ..can you smell fuel on plugs after cranking .. I think you are .. when you say it is spluttering, I think you have the timing slightly out will need to check this before we go any further ? make sure your both timing marks are all set correctly ...these HAVE to be spot on ? let me know



January, 9, 2009 AT 2:04 PM

The reference marks that I have are lining up.

Here is the Upper Cam and the lower Zero mark on the Crankshaft Pulley lining up:

Do I have to remove the whole bottom assemble to see if the crankshaft Sprocket is lined up? I thought that the zero mark "0" on the lower timing belt cover indicated that the crankshaft was at Bottom Dead Center.

I have tried moving the alignment of the upper camshaft a few teeth before and a few teeth after to see if it would start but it would not.

When I did the spark test and there was an open spark plug hole, it looked like gas vapor was sprayed out of it - if it was then it was getting gas. I am not sure if this information is relevant to the starting problem, but I also noticed on the spark plug that I tested that it was being covered with black - I had sanded them before reinstalling them after the head gasket job, but during this time of trying to start the engine black stuff coated the plug.


Dave H

January, 9, 2009 AT 2:53 PM

You are getting fuel and spark .. you are quite correct your marks are lined up ... but once they are lined up .. before you totally tighten #1 idler pulley to spec .. crank needs to be set @ 45 degree BTDC mark on #1 timing belt cover .. explained below .. so the timing is slightly out on crank ... changeing it @ cam will be pot luck at getting it right .. but i applaud you for your setting skills ..let me know if you need any of the other diagrams !!

Install No. 2 idler pulley (if removed). Install and tighten bolt to specification. See TORQUE SPECIFICATIONS . Ensure idler pulley is clean and rotates smoothly.
Install No. 1 idler pulley and tension spring (if removed). Pry No. 1 idler pulley away from timing belt area as far as possible. Temporarily tighten No. 1 idler pulley bolt. Ensure idler pulley is clean and rotates smoothly.
Using crankshaft pulley bolt, rotate crankshaft so timing mark on crankshaft sprocket aligns with timing mark on oil pump housing. See Fig. 4 . This will position keyway in crankshaft sprocket at 12 o'clock position.
CAUTION:If reusing timing belt, ensure reference marks on timing belt align with reference marks placed on crankshaft and camshaft sprockets. Ensure timing belt is installed in original direction of rotation.

Ensure all sprockets and idler pulleys are clean. Install timing belt on crankshaft sprocket, oil pump sprocket, No. 1 idler pulley, and then No. 2 idler pulley in sequence.
Install timing belt guide with cupped side away from crankshaft sprocket and flat side toward timing belt. Install No. 1 timing belt cover and new gasket.
Align crankshaft pulley key groove with key in crankshaft. Install crankshaft pulley. Install and tighten crankshaft pulley bolt to specification.
Rotate crankshaft clockwise so cylinder No. 1 is at TDC on compression stroke. Ensure timing mark on crankshaft pulley aligns with "0" mark on No. 1 timing belt cover. If reusing timing belt, ensure reference mark on timing belt aligns with upper edge of No. 1 timing belt cover.
Rotate camshaft, and align hole in camshaft sprocket with alignment mark on camshaft bearing cap. See Fig. 2 . Install timing belt on camshaft sprocket. If reusing timing belt, ensure reference mark on timing belt aligns with the reference mark on camshaft sprocket. Ensure tension exists on timing belt between the crankshaft and camshaft sprockets.
CAUTION:DO NOT rotate crankshaft counterclockwise, as viewed from timing belt end of engine.

Loosen No. 1 idler pulley bolt 1/2 turn. Rotate crankshaft pulley 2 full revolutions clockwise from TDC to TDC.
Ensure timing mark on crankshaft pulley aligns with "0" mark on No. 1 timing belt cover, and hole in camshaft sprocket aligns with alignment mark on camshaft bearing cap. See Fig. 2 . If timing marks are not aligned, remove timing belt and reinstall.
Rotate crankshaft clockwise 1 and 7/8 revolutions and align crankshaft pulley "0" mark with 45-degree Before Top Dead Center (BTDC) mark on No. 1 timing belt cover. See Fig. 5 .
Tighten No. 1 idler pulley bolt to specification. See TORQUE SPECIFICATIONS . Install No. 2 timing belt cover and gaskets. Install and tighten spark plugs to specification.
To install remaining components, reverse removal procedure. Install all bolts/nuts on right (timing belt side) engine mount before tightening to specification.
On Camry, when installing control rod and bracket on strut tower and right (timing belt side engine mount, tighten bolts to specification in sequence. See Fig. 6 . On MR2, tighten engine mount bolts in correct locations. See Fig. 7 . Adjust drive belts to proper tension.



January, 9, 2009 AT 5:15 PM

I followed the procedure and it sounded like it wanted to start for the first second but then it cranked as if there was no spark (sound wise).

I also found this in my manual:

My spring was silver, but I basically did that procedure before and no start.

So, what do we do next?


Dave H

January, 10, 2009 AT 8:06 AM

Can you manually line up the cam timing marks and let me know where the crank timing mark is now ?? is it @45 degree ..@ "0" or is it way out ... does the belt feel tight .. ?? also do you have access to a compression tester ?? and you mentioned the plug you pulled was black covered .. was this an oil wet black or like a coal dusty blackness ?? let me know

NOTE:For 1992-96 Camry, the timing belt tension spring procedure has been revised. See REVISED TIMING BELT TENSION SPRING PROCEDURE (1992-96 CAMRY) .

Revised Timing Belt Tension Spring Procedure (1992-96 Camry)
From Toyota technical service bulletin EG001-99; January 29, 1999: For 1992-96 Camry, the timing belt tension spring procedure was revised. When replacing the timing belt on 1992-96 Camry with 2.2L, tension spring MUST be replaced. The revised tension spring 0 (Part No. 905-7-17003) is a 13-coil design which replaces the original 10-coil design.

spring Free Length
Except 1999-00 Camry......1.811" (46.00 mm)



January, 10, 2009 AT 1:12 PM

The crank timing mark lines up at " 0" I do not have a compression tester but when I turn the crank I can feel the difference in pressure getting harder and then easier.

The black was coal dusty black, and I pulled and tested the other wires and they are getting spark. The other plug that I pulled out was black as well and smelled of gasoline.

The spring was a ten coil - do I need to get a 13 coil one?

What should we do next.


Dave H

January, 10, 2009 AT 1:34 PM

Yes we need to replace the spring for the 13 coil type .. the newer type is shorter so I don't think we are getting the correct adjustment when setting @45 degree BTDC

Reference Number(s): EG001-99, Date of Issue: January 29, 1999

Related Ref Number(s): EG001-99
Model(s): 1992-1996 Toyota Camry 5S-FE
Section: Engine
Bulletin No.: EG001-99
Date: January 29, 1999
The service replacement Timing Belt for the 5S-FE Engine has been revised. To insure that this belt fits properly, the Timing Belt and Timing Belt Tensioner Spring must be replaced as a set.
1992-1996 Camry with 5S-FE Engines
Refer to Fig. 1 .
Previous Part NumberCurrent Part NumberPart Name
90507-1803090507-17003Tension Spring
13568-0904013568-09041Timing Belt

Replace Tension Spring with revised part when replacing Timing Belt.



January, 10, 2009 AT 3:59 PM

I installed the new 13 coil spring, took it back to 45 degrees BTDC (to the left of zero) and tried to start it. It sounded like it wanted to start the first second but after that it just turned.

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