The Toyota Camry is one of the most dependable, long-lasting cars on the road. Take care of it, and it will give you years of reliable service, just like the one featured in the video below on how to restore an older Toyota Camry from The Car Care Nut.
In the video, The Car Care Nut provides a tour of a very well-maintained 2001 Toyota Camry. He not only shows us the engine bay and interior but what to look for underneath the car. He also talks about the issues this particular Camry has with its suspension and oil leaks. We'll cover these issues in this post as well as why OE Toyota parts are your best bet to make your Toyota vehicle last like this Camry.
Why Aftermarket Struts Are Not As Good As OE Toyota Struts
The video starts with a look at a pair of aftermarket struts. Both struts are bad and have rusted out after just a couple of years. One of the struts is completely blown with no hydraulic pressure. But the problems don't end there. In addition to installing aftermarket struts on the Camry, the other mechanic reused the original strut mounts. As The Car Care Nut explains, this is a problem because the 1997 to 2004 Toyota Avalon and 1997 to 2001 Toyota Camry had issues with the strut mounts. The solution is to replace the mounts when you replace the struts and always use genuine OE Toyota parts.
Toyota 5S-FE Engine Oil Leaks
Another area where the 1997 to 2001 Toyota Camry can have issues is with the 5S-FE engine. This engine is one of the most reliable, trouble-free engines Toyota made. However, it can develop oil leaks over time:
- The first problem involves torquing the bolts that hold the valve cover on. Unlike many engines, where the valve cover bolts go around the outside of the valve cover, the valve cover on the 5S-FE engine is held in place by bolts near the spark plugs. The problem with these bolts is they are hard to keep torqued down. As The Car Care Nut shows in the video, you have to torque and re-torque the bolts multiple times until they stay at the correct torque specification. Also, if you have valve cover gasket leaks, it's a good idea to check the valve cover bolts and make sure they are torqued correctly before replacing the valve cover gasket.
- Another problem involves a rubber plug that is almost hidden behind the ignition coil. A common mistake people make with this engine is not replacing this plug when they replace the valve cover gasket. As a result, the Camry will continue to leak oil, and the oil leak will appear to be an issue with the valve cover.
- The timing belt replacement is another area where the 5S-FE engine is prone to oil leaks. Not only do you need to replace the timing cover gaskets but the oil pump gasket, o-ring gasket, and oil-pump pickup tube gasket.
The Car Care Nut recommends replacing all of these gaskets at the same time if you're doing a timing belt replacement. It may take a bit longer, but it will be well worth it to prevent oil leaks.
Olathe Toyota Parts Center Has The Camry Parts You Need
If you're looking to maintain your Camry, or any other Toyota car or truck, we have the parts you need with up-front wholesale pricing. We're passionate about Toyota vehicles which is why we only sell genuine OEM Toyota parts but offer helpful resources like a free Toyota VIN decoder, diagnostic info for common Toyota trouble codes, and a wide variety of resources just for Toyota and Scion owners.