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Old 01-28-2021, 11:43 PM #1
cas5259 cas5259 is offline
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1998 Revival

Hello, this is my first Toyota and also first truck. Iíve spent the last 10 years in the Audi world, where preventative maintenance is the only way to go, and currently have a mildly modified TTS for a daily driver.

Just picked up a Ď98 SR5 auto to use as a utility vehicle for camping, casual off roading, and dog duty. I will also be taking it out to CO for almost a month in Feb to ski bum around while taking advantage of working remotely. Hereís how it looked when I got it.




Iím pretty sure it was the cheapest driveable 3rd gen for sale within a few hundred miles. It needed a lot of mechanical work, but the exterior and frame are in great shape. Valve cover leak was causing smoke to come out of the hood and the trans had to be manually shifted into 1st, among a bunch of other things. Like I said, it was cheap and had 271k miles. Despite all this, it made the 2 hour trek home no problem - definitely couldnít do that with an Audi.

Then the much needed maintenance started. Started off with timing belt and valve covers, pcv, spark plugs, along with a ton of cleaning. It was a nice change of pace to only need 10, 12, and 14mm sockets for most things. The FSM is a great resource.



Evidence of a coolant leak at some point and active dipstick leak.


Heads looked ok for the mileage.


Crank and cam seals done.


New timing belt installed and covers back on. I almost never have to use my in-lb torque wrench, but it came in clutch throughout this project.


Coming back together much cleaner. Sent out the injectors for cleaning as well. Mr. Injector said one was on its way out so I installed an OEM refurb one.


Broke off the brittle wire harness plastic and replaced it with euro style tesa tape leftover from an Audi job. This allowed much more flexibility to maneuver the driver side valve cover back into place too.


Removed the running boards at some point while waiting for parts.


The tank strap was rusted through and the tank had pinhole rust from whoever supported the tank on the shield with an old mechanics coverall, but hey, someone left a free Walmart 8mm wrench! Small miracles.



New tank and strap. Also replaced fuel filter.


Spare tire date coded 1997. Nice.


Out with the old muffler and tailpipe. Donít have pics of the new one. Used walker parts though.


Replaced oil cooler hoses and seals, figured why not while I was in there. The oring was so brittle it broke apart and the hoses were swollen from the valve cover leak.


Next up was the shift solenoids and front sway bushings. This went so smoothly I guess I didnít bother taking pictures.



Hereís how it sat about 3 weeks into all this. Shifting great, no more smoke, but still putting down some oil from the bell housing.

Last edited by cas5259; 01-29-2021 at 09:41 AM.
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Old 01-29-2021, 12:08 AM #2
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1998 Revival

It was looking better at this point but still needed more work. Installed new AC Delco rear springs to fix the sag. Rear is now 1/2Ē higher than the front. Much better!



Still leaking a little oil. Maybe 10 drops overnight. Used dye to trace it down to what I thought was the oil pan.


Out comes the diff to reseal the oil pan. It was a pain to remove alone but eventually it came out. Used leftover Toyota fipg from the valve cover job to seal it back up. Also replaced the passenger side CV that had a torn boot with a new Cardone one. Will rebuild the old OEM one for a spare at some point.


Removed the oil pickup to inspect and clean, looked fine though.


Cleaned everything up and put it back together. Also installed new steering rack bushings. This was cake with the diff out of the way. New OEM lower ball joints too. Still leaking oil from the same spot, but noticeably less now. Guessing itís the RMS.

Onto the axle seals. One side was a mess and other was just weeping through the wheel stud holes. I held out on new tires until this was done because I didnít want to get gear oil all over the new tires. Replaced the bearings, shoes, drums and hardware as well.

A $75 eBay puller tool made axle disassembly pretty simple. I was able to reuse the retainers and abs rings. Huge money saver there, even after buying the tool, and I have absolutely no idea why the FSM says to grind those off. There are tons of SSTís out there that are more complex than that puller.



Backing plates were toast though. One was rusted pretty good, and the other was so covered in crap, I was happy to not have to bother cleaning it up.


Got new OEM ones, which hurt, but whatever Iíll never have to do it again.



I followed a few peopleís guides and flipped the retainer that the axle seal rides on and measured to make sure the revised seal rode in the correct spot. 3mm of polished axle was dead center for me.

Got it all back together, bled all the brakes, and had chatter from the new drums which caused this wear pattern after driving 1/2 mile.


Local shop found the new Wagner drums were freakin 70-80thou out of round! Amazon refunded the drums completely after telling them it cost $50 to get them turned. All good now and no more axle leak!

Found a local deal on TRD wheels with the tires I was already going to buy! Jumped on that one and hereís how it looks today. Iíve done a few other minor things like resolder the clock, hvac leds,and extend the rear diff breather, but this mostly covers it.


Hereís the tracking sheet of everything done to date. Should be good for awhile now. Some stuff would have been fine to address at a later date or leave alone, but the idea of being at the mercy of a random shop at some point in the upcoming cross country trip was too unsettling.


Thanks to all for the info shared on this forum and especially @ for those helpful videos! They really came in handy a few times while working on an unfamiliar platform. Knowing what I know now, I wouldíve just pulled the engine right off the bat to make things a lot easier and more ergonomic.

Iíve put about 1k enjoyable, trouble free miles on it since all the work was done. Might tackle the RMS in the spring once Iíve spent more time driving it than wrenching, provided I donít get cancer first from the 2 dozen cans of brake cleaner used throughout the project.

Last edited by cas5259; 01-29-2021 at 09:44 AM.
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Old 01-29-2021, 08:46 PM #3
RollingSherman RollingSherman is offline
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Thanks for the detailed pictures and I am glad that its getting some love now.
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Old 01-31-2021, 11:18 PM #4
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Hello and welcome ;)
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Old 01-31-2021, 11:33 PM #5
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Nice work. A guy who knows Audi preventative maintenance can revive a Toyota with his eyes closed.
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Old 02-01-2021, 11:52 AM #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by T4R2014 View Post
Nice work. A guy who knows Audi preventative maintenance can revive a Toyota with his eyes closed.

It was definitely a bit easier with the extra room and no weird fasteners. Only had to drill out 2 body bolts, which was better than expected. The worst parts of it were removing the diff alone, and getting the axles setup in the press. I have a HF 20T, which is about a foot too short to make it easy to slide the axles in and out. All of this could have been easy with a helper, though.
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Old 02-02-2021, 02:09 PM #7
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Nice work!
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Old 02-02-2021, 02:23 PM #8
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Nice work and thanks for sharing! Great detail work
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Old 02-03-2021, 12:44 PM #9
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Thanks. Got a few other things planned, nothing major. Maybe shocks/struts in the spring and speakers.
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Old 02-04-2021, 10:46 PM #10
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This is super cool! Glad to see some good working going into a nice looking 3rd gen!
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Old 02-05-2021, 12:07 PM #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cas5259 View Post
Thanks. Got a few other things planned, nothing major. Maybe shocks/struts in the spring and speakers.
Do you need some coil springs? I have some brand new Genuine Toyota parts that I am trying to sell since I had to part with my 4Runner.

48131-35400
SPRING, COIL, FR

48131-35350
SPRING, COIL, FR

48231-35210
SPRING, COIL, RR
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Old 02-05-2021, 06:19 PM #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RollingSherman View Post
Do you need some coil springs? I have some brand new Genuine Toyota parts that I am trying to sell since I had to part with my 4Runner.

48131-35400
SPRING, COIL, FR

48131-35350
SPRING, COIL, FR

48231-35210
SPRING, COIL, RR

Nope. Thanks for the offer, though. Already replaced the rears and am just going to reuse the fronts when the time comes to replace the struts.
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Old 02-05-2021, 07:52 PM #13
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No problem!
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Old 02-15-2021, 09:17 PM #14
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Having owned a VW product in the past, I see why you like the Toyota. The lack of weird triple square fasteners is nice. Looks like you got a good one, even if mechanically it needed a bit of love.
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Old 02-15-2021, 09:23 PM #15
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1998 Revival

Did some work over the weekend refreshing the front brakes. Replaced the inner/outer tie rods, brake hoses, rotors, pads, hardware, and installed speed bleeders.

Inspect your brake hoses! These had 270k on them. I did the rear one at the same time as the rear refresh.


All done. Speed bleeders are pretty sweet, highly recommend them. I couldnít get my power bleeder to seal on the master reservoir, and I found these to be just as easy.


Tie rods were pretty simple.

Last edited by cas5259; 02-15-2021 at 09:26 PM.
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