1999 Toyota Camry 4 cyl Front Wheel Drive Automatic 119000 miles
I drove up to Kentucky from Florida (600 miles one way) to pick up my mother's 1999 toyota camry, 2.2L 4cyl, auto. It has 119,000 miles. Upon driving it home to Florida the car was running perfect, and about 300 miles into my trip I stopped and got gas, and check the oil levels. The reason I checked the oil levels is because I looked up on the windshield and noticed that the car was due for an oil change at 109,000 miles. IT WAS 10,000 MILES OVERDUE! So I immediately checked the oil level. Well the dipstick was bone dry. I put a quart of 10W30 in it, and the dipstick was still dry. I am certainly not any kind of mechanic and don't claim to be. So I was afraid to add any additional oil in it. I just decided to drive it home. Upon driving it again, the engine began ticking. Pretty fast, noticable tick, and the ticking sped up at higher rpm's. The higher the rpm's the faster the ticking. Now the engine ticks at idle and driving speeds. It sounds like it is coming from the top of the motor. I have no idea, maybe a lifter, or the cams or something. I took it to a toyota dealer (mistake) and they told me it was because the valve stem seals were bad, and also my plugs and plug wires needed replacement. I do not know how that would cause the car to tick. Toyota said " that the valve stem seals removed valve cover and plugs and found two plugs soaked in oil and plugs have no electrode left.&Quot; needless to say I replaced the plugs and plug wires. My question is, what is causing the ticking in the motor?
Firstly by not having enough oil in the engine the heat caused the valve seals to dry and crack. Then when you finally did put some kind of oil in it, the valve seals werent able to keep the oil from going into the combustion chamber thats how you got oil on your plugs. Those two seals that coordinate with the two oily plugs must be the ones that are really bad now. Now the ticking is because the rocker arms are tapping on top of the valves because there is no oil to cushion it. Fill it up untill you see it at the correct level on the dip stick. Remember 4 quarts for a 4 cylinder, its ok to have a little bit over. Don't be scared. I am surprised that the car isn't ruined with all that driving and no oil
April, 25, 2008 AT 3:06 PM
Well, I forgot to mention that as soon as I got back to florida last sunday I got the oil changed and the ticking is still there. So even with the proper amount of oil, it still ticks. After I took it to the toyota dealer, I dropped it off to a local mechanic's shop. He took off the valve cover and said it was coming from the top of the motor, and that he would have to pull the head out to see what the problem truly is and fix whatever is broken in there. He said he could not really give me an exact price or even an approximate price without knowing for sure, but he said it would be maybe $1,000, maybe less, maybe much more. He told me he would know for sure once the head is pulled out. He said he could not get to that job until next week, monday or tuesday. The car is just sitting there now because the mechanic told me that it is not safe to drive like that. Do you agree with that? Should I just keep it parked? I mean, I used to have a ford festiva that I drove for a super long time every day delivering pizza's with the motor ticking like that and nothing bad ever happened to it. The transmission eventually failed, but the motor still started and ran. Should I pay to get it fixed to avoid further costs and possibly having to replace the motor? Or should I just keep driving it the way it is? I just have a feeling that this car will still go another 50K even ticking like that. But then again, if the valve stem seals are bad, the plugs will continue to go bad. And so on and so on. I just don't want to pony up that kind of dough if it's not necessary. What do you think?
April, 25, 2008 AT 7:55 PM
Yeah don't go for that, Im sure you need those seals but there is only four that shouldnt cost that much. As for pulling off the head, my opinion. &Quot; give me my car back I'll take my chances " you know? IF YOU WANT TO DO THE SEALS THEN FINE, BUT ALL THAT OTHER STUFF NO. AND FURTHER MORE. YOU DON'T HAVE TO KEEP MY CAR. I CAN BRING IT TO YOU ON MONDAY OR TUESDAY.
May, 7, 2008 AT 3:07 PM
" firstly by not having enough oil in the engine the heat caused the valve seals to dry and crack. Then when you finally did put some kind of oil in it, the valve seals werent able to keep the oil from going into the combustion chamber thats how you got oil on your plugs. Those two seals that coordinate with the two oily plugs must be the ones that are really bad now. Now the ticking is because the rocker arms are tapping on top of the valves because there is no oil to cushion it. Fill it up untill you see it at the correct level on the dip stick" legitimate007, you were right. To a T! The valve stem seals are being replaced and the car should be ready in a few days. Thanks!
May, 9, 2008 AT 9:30 PM
Awesome, please leave some feedback if at all possible
May, 10, 2008 AT 10:04 AM
Hey, i'm having the same problem in my 1999 GrandAM. Any idea's?. Should I drive it or no?