Bought a 2005 Toyota Corolla

The Critic

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I had my carpet guy come and extract the carpet, seats and door panels with his truck mount. There is a little bit of wicking, but at least it is clean.
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After:

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Also installed a fresh set of Genuine Toyota floor mats:
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Completed:
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But the car is running again. The drive belt tensioner finally came in. So I reinstalled the valve cover, belt tensioner, belt, motor mount, did a brake flush and road tested it earlier today. All is well. Just need to replace the trunk seal, replace the leaking exhaust donut gasket and have @nthach replace the radio.

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Nice.....I'm a clean freak, so always do that to interior when buying a used car. Did ya paint the wheels? The rust showing through wheel caps would tweak my OCD.....lol
 
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I did many of the same things you show in this thread when my sister picked up a 2006 Corolla CE that had spent much of its life in the Texas sun and was now in ChicagoLand...it has been over 3 years but only 20K miles and it is still running like a top...the body isn't in near as nice condition as yours but runs great and no CEL or anything (although that has gone off from time to time...usually fixed by some distance driving and a bottle of Techron)...

Nice job on yours...

Bill
 
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I had an 2003 Corolla that was used for transporting lab samples to hospitals. I was only about 4 years old when I bought it with 205,000 miles. It was white and I put a rear spoiler, factory used mag wheels, and had the hood and bumper cover repainted due to road chips. The car was like new when I sold it with 215,000 miles on the clock. I really liked that car and after I sold it I wished I would have kept it because it was such a low priced dependable car that looked like new. My resurrection was very similar to the OP's. Nice work!
 
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I had an 2003 Corolla that was used for transporting lab samples to hospitals. I was only about 4 years old when I bought it with 205,000 miles. It was white and I put a rear spoiler, factory used mag wheels, and had the hood and bumper cover repainted due to road chips. The car was like new when I sold it with 215,000 miles on the clock. I really liked that car and after I sold it I wished I would have kept it because it was such a low priced dependable car that looked like new. My resurrection was very similar to the OP's. Nice work!
That's pretty amazing your parents let you do that when you were just 4 years old.
 

The Critic

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We are in the home stretch, but the car may have some unresolved mechanical issues.

When I picked up the car, it had P0441/0455 faults. I replaced the purge valve and gas cap with OE parts.

I want to verify there are no leaks in the EVAP system. So, I smoke-tested the EVAP system from both the service port and the fuel filler.

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Although I was unable to find any smoke AND the car’s EVAP monitor shows complete, my smoke machine says I still have a 0.25mm leak:

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Any ideas?

Next, long-term fuel trims are high at idle but are near perfect under high engine load. At idle, they are between +12 to +15%. I had the injectors cleaned and flow-tested, I checked the injector seals for leakage using brake clean (none found), and also pinched off the purge and booster vacuum lines. Nothing helped. So, I smoke-tested the intake:

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Unfortunately, no leaks were found. Again, any ideas?

Then, I decided to tackle the worn exhaust donut gasket. This is the gasket that seals the exhaust manifold to the catalytic converter.

Here is a picture of the old gasket:
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Unfortunately, I also found significant damage on the catalytic converter flange:
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Not sure how this happened. I have replaced many of these gaskets and this is the first time that I have seen one with damage. The sealing surface felt like a cheese grater. I tried reassembling the connection with new spring bolts and multiple gaskets, but this resulted in a noticeable exhaust leak at idle.

So, I made a trip to the local muffler shop:
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The tech wanted to try grinding down the peaks on the flange before attempting a flange replacement. I gave him approval to do so. He told me to reinstall the catalytic converter with a small amount of Permatex Ultra Copper on the gasket. Not exactly my style, but I did as I was told. After allowing the RTV to cure overnight, I started the car and was surprised to find the problem resolved. I even smoke tested the exhaust and verified no leaks at this time. We’ll see how long this lasts.

Lastly, I performed a headlight restoration. I DA-sanded with 320, 500, 800, 1000 and 3000, followed with 2 coats of 3M headlight clear coat.

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New radio turned out great! Any details on the installation?
The deck is a Sony XAV-AX150 - a simple, almost rudimentary digital media radio. No optical drive or aux/HDMI input/output. There is a basic AM/FM tuner. It does CarPlay and Android Auto - and frankly for the price($250 at the time, it’s now $300 at Crutchfield), it’s a step above Chinese Android and 3rd tier brands(Boss/Jensen/Planet Audio) for sound quality. The UX is simple and intuitive, it doesn’t have the polish of Pioneer, easier to navigate than JVC/Kenwood or Alpine.

Backup camera is a Boyo license plate mounted one. I wired it up per this video so it’s constantly powered - so it will switch on with the car in R - and on demand via the Rear Camera menu. There are LED lights that are on constantly - we discussed installing a relay to switch them off out of R.

 
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Also, for anyone trying to retrofit a backup camera to a Toyota or Lexus product that doesn’t have it - there is a red/black wire at one of the connectors that plugs into the front junction box/“integration relay” fuse panel. That’s your reverse signal - it will have battery voltage or light up a test light when backprobed with the shifter in R.

You can use a T-tap(preferably a Posilock brand one) or ideally a military splice to tap into the lights. If you’re using a PAC Audio RadioPro 4 or iDatalink Maestro and the interface module is getting CAN bus via the OBD-II or the CAN bus wires at the radio connectors there’s no need to tap into the reverse lights - the module will generate the 12V signal for the reverse signal.
 
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And CarPlay does work well across the board. Android Auto can be cranky on some phones - it’s a separate app, unlike CarPlay that’s built into iOS. If you have a Samsung Galaxy and notice Google Maps in Android Auto isn’t “syncing” or moving with you - check to make sure USB debugging is off. It’s OK to enable Developer Mode - just make sure USB debugging is off(you really should have if off unless you know what you’re doing).
 
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I may have missed it and I'd bet you already did it but make sure to replace that Cabin Air Filter...this was my sister's CAF after less than 1 year (albeit she has been driving in a heavy construction zone to get to work)...OEM too...I think it got clogged from the construction dust and sucked right into the blower motor...

Sis told me her car needs a new blower motor because it was making noise...I looked at the CAF and found this and after replacement...no more blower motor noise ;)

Bill
 

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One more thing I forgot - many Sony decks with steering wheel control inputs will work out of the box for Japanese and Korean cars made before 2013-2018(which is when many of them switched over to CAN/MOST/LIN for that). If there isn’t a 3.5mm pigtail in the box, you need to buy a 3.5mm TRRS pigtail and solder it up per this:


Else, you need an SWC module. I’ve used Axxess/Metra, PAC RadioPro4 and iDatalink Maestro to success.
 

The Critic

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Nice.....I'm a clean freak, so always do that to interior when buying a used car. Did ya paint the wheels? The rust showing through wheel caps would tweak my OCD.....lol
You are probably 7th or 8th person who has suggested that. :ROFLMAO:
 

pbm

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I have a 2008 Corolla CE with 131k that I bought in 2009 with 16k as a commuter. I bought it because it was the last year of that generation which I knew to be good one. It has been a great car but I feel the MPGs aren't what they used to be (this could also be because it doesn't get the highway miles that it used to). I'm wondering if my injectors could need 'reconditioning' after reading this thread? I've used Regane or Techron before every OC but maybe I should have them looked at....
 

pbm

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I have a 2008 Corolla CE with 131k that I bought in 2009 with 16k as a commuter. I bought it because it was the last year of that generation which I knew to be good one. It has been a great car but I feel the MPGs aren't what they used to be (this could also be because it doesn't get the highway miles that it used to). I'm wondering if my injectors could need 'reconditioning' after reading this thread? I've used Regane or Techron before every OC but maybe I should have them looked at....
 
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I would, they're prone to developing issues at this age/miles. You can always send them to Trav for reconditioning.
 
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