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1990 DX sitting for three years, need to restore.

Old 01-07-2014, 12:13 AM
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Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 8
Red face 1990 DX sitting for three years, need to restore.

Hello all,
I hate to post this, but have been searching for an hour and not found exactly the advice I needed. Three years ago the water pump finally went out on my '90 Camry DX. I replaced it, along with a torn timing belt, and tension pulley spring. I broke a bolt off of the timing belt cover and still have to get that out. I got the new timing belt on, and properly aligned. I still need to bolt back on the engine, however.
The problem is that now this car been sitting, for one reason or another, for three years. I have been told to drain the old fuel out of the fuel system, change the fuel filter, drop the gas tank and clean out the fuel pump. I know the fuel pump has a filter too, and will change that as well. I will change all the fluids necessary (brake, power steering, antifreeze, and oil), and check and adjust the timing.
Now my question. One thing I have never touched is the fuel rail. I am wondering if I need to take out all the fuel injectors and change out the O-rings and grommets? If anyone can add anything to what needs to be done to restore my car, please let me know. I just do not want to forget something that should be done. I need a procedure.
Old 01-07-2014, 01:23 AM
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Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Maine
Posts: 1,223

I'm not too familiar with your model camry but replacing parts properly can never hurt. Do you need to replace the o rings? Have they ever been replaced? Has the car been baking in the sun and freezing during the winter? If you are doing a real restoration then I would say that you should, but you might not need to. Again, I'm not too familiar with your car and those o rings might be perfectly fine. Replacing them is just time and money if they are perfectly fine. Changing the fluids, plugs, and filters are a safe bets and are usually necessary. How much gas is in the tank? Maybe a fuel treatment and topping off with fresh gas is all it would need. If you are trying to safe some time and money, then I would do the basics and start the car and see what is up. Just my two cents.
Old 01-07-2014, 09:23 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: PTW
Posts: 11,738

You may be working too hard at this.

If the car used ethanol blended fuel the alcohol tends to pick up moisture and fuel break down quickly over time. How much fuel in the tank? If not much might add some kind of additive that absorbs water and 5 gallons of new fuel. If a lot of fuel try siphoning out as much as you can then add additive and new fuel.

The engine can type filter seldom plugs up and would not worry about the tank sock filter yet.

Change oil.

Drain coolant and flush out old including heater core. Caution coolant is toxic to humans and pets.

The brake fluid will pickup water over time, car running or not. Check color the darker it is the more water.

PS fluid is same as trans. The darker the fluid the worse the condition. Suggest NOT taking system apart but removing fluid from reservoir and refilling with new. Once car is running change fluid again between drives until is clear again.

Might also change all trans fluid not because of sitting but to keep it fresh and fluid is cheap $$.

Skip the injector o'rings, etc, until starting car and determining if there are any leaks.

If the distributor was not moved and car ran OK before problems it should still be OK after repaired.

Check ign system cap/rotor for any build up of condensation and corrosion caused by setting so long. Plug pull spark plug holders and do same plus check for oil and check plug electrode for corrosion. A hot spark will allow the engine to start easier.

Once engine starts even if all OK it may idle poorly until the computer figures out what is what, then clear up after a few starts. Thus if all Ok and still rough running don't assume the worst until you give the engine some time.

Timing cover is there to keep water and other debris out, it is not water tight as in coming out of garden hose. Bolt torque is low. If you can't get the bolt out get some silicone seal, perhaps for aluminum windows, as sealant is designed not to corrode aluminum, and apply this to seal and hold cover to engine. Let sealant completely cure before starting engine.
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