Toyota Sienna Engine Pictures - Valve Cover Removed - 1MZ-FE

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Nov 5, 2002
Greater Hartford, CT
I had to set my mind at ease about "oil gelling." My 2002 Sienna has 38,000 miles, using Chevron Supreme 10W-30 in summer, and 5W-30 in mid-winter, averaging about 2000 miles between oil changes. On my 2 long trips to Florida, I used Mobil-1 10W-30. I use 93-octane fuel, and drive about 60/40 highway/local. [To look at all 5 images, click "next..."] PS-If there is a less cumbersome way to post images, please let me know, and I will revise this... [ January 17, 2004, 12:13 AM: Message edited by: Pete ]
I can't get the Yahoo photos to show. Anyway, why spend the money on 93 octane gasoline. Isn't your engine built for 87? Ken
Gee, you're fast....I was enabling "sharing," and the images should now be available. Recommended fuel is 91 octane or higher... Compression ratio is [10.5 : 1]. After I get an OBD scanner and hook it to my PC, I'll have better evidence that octane is important in my engine...knock sensors and all. But nitration...head temps...maybe TooSlick or another expert can chime in.
Wow! The pictures look great! Your engine is spotless! If Toyota says to use premium gas, use premium gas. I believe it was Ted who wrote elsewhere that premium gas helps keep the engine temps down...
The Avalon has a variation of that engine. I think they put out the same power (215hp?) and premium gives it more power, smoother revving and a lot better gas mileage. That puts us to ease with ours. We have 22,000 miles on our 02 Avalon. The dealer uses Castrol GTX 5W30 year round. Thats what they recommend.
One Word, "SWEET" [Cheers!] Did you have fresh oil in at the time? What miles on the OIL in this PIC? Mine looks like that at the 341K level but on a TACO. I thought I had 12K on it or so, turns out If memory serves me 24K+ on the oil, so mine had a dirty oil tint but otherwise looks the same. Can't tell from the pics, but did you notice any writing inside the motor? Mine had some, and I'd like to find out what type of PEN they used.
Of course the inside looks great, but would you have expected anything less with 2000 mile OIC?
SO your saying that you should use higher grade fuel because it keeps the engine cooler? I didnt know that, that was a high compression engine.
To those who are new here: This is the "sludge engine." About a day after I signed the contract to buy my Toyota, I learned of claims of sludge in these engines--very boisterous and persistent claims, that continue today go on other forums. That's why I have changed my oil at 2000-mile increments ("insurance"), besides the fact that that practice costs about $6. (I'll often let the filter stay on for 2 oil changes.) The oil in the picture is Chevron Supreme 5W-30, with about 400 miles on it. I didn't "touch up" anything before taking the photo--notice the cover gasket is still on...but cleaned the seating surface before reinstalling the cover... The only writing I saw behind the valve cover was a penned dot, used on all Toyota OEM parts on the doesn't show (I thought I was closer). I use the fuel recommeded by Toyota, and in many miles, have gotten better fuel economy with higher octane in this engine. This fact will be disputed--it is not true in 95% of engines--but is true in this engine, where high octane is recommended.
Actually the AMOUNT of fuel not the octane level of fuel you use cools the engine. More fuel-rich cools it--less fuel-lean--heats the engine up. Its an oil return port thats to small. The oil sits on a hot spot on the head in a small puddle and cooks itself. I do work with a varity of different Toyota delaerships in the Ohio area. I do Classic in Mentor Ohio and they are purchasing Mobil Drive Clean Plus-blend- and they NEVER had to tear one engine apart. Metro Toyota however is using Pennzoil and they had to rebuild about half a dozen or so. We knew someone at Montrose Toyota and he changed his oil once in 34,000 miles and Toyota paid for the repair. Wow, lucky
No. I supply Toyota Brunswick their oil also and they are currently buying conventional oil and they have not had one of their own customers cars come back either. They have had other cars from surrounding dealers get towed there though for service work.
Pete, your engine looks amazinginly clean! I battled over my Sienna and just got tired of fighting the good fight with the sludgey engine and other issues. Congrats! You're a poster boy for what can go RIGHT in this engine! [Big Grin] How long do you plan on keeping your Sienna?
Wow I am surprised. Its good to see someone stand up for a quality issue. Just call Metro Toyota. They have numerous gel issues and they are using pennzoil. What do you think they have Toyotas that were assembled on Friday? Obviously isnt the car but the product. Don Joseph Toyota and Montrose Toyota are using Castrol and they are not having any problems. Wonder what it could be?
scooter996: I really don't care what day of the week the cars are made. I was told that when it comes to oil that you were a knowledgable person. A statement like that makes me wonder. You know as well as I do the Pennzoil did not cause the sludge, no more than Valvoline, Mobil, Castrol, Quaker State, Kendall, Chevron, and a whole host of other oils do not cause sludge. First we know that Toyota has a problem with these engines which cooks oil. What we do not know are the service habits of the owners, and the service habits of the dealership. For all I know the customer has never been back to the dealer for service until it was to late. I can boldly state that if a Toyota or any other car is serviced like it should be using Pennzoil or any other oil, it will not sludge. If you do work for Mobil I know they thought you better than that. And I do know Mobil as my dad worked for Mobil for 45 years, and 22 years ago I worked for Mobil. A very good reputable company that makes some very fine products. I stand by my original statement. Have not seen a Toyota sludge on Pennzoil in 20 years. Including the 4 my wife has owned.
"I figure I better stand up for the product I sell and the company I work for." Hey Ho Johnny! Just so you know I've been doing a little myth busting on other forums. Those Pennzoil sludge tales die hard. [Frown] This is not the only amazingly clean result with Chevron oil. Someone had a Subaru with about 75,000 miles on it and upon internal inspection, it was spotless. [Smile] If the "search" feature is working, you might find it in the UOA section. [I dont know] --- Bror Jace
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