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Light Overland Vehicle Tech Tech issues, tips and hints, prepping for travel
Under 3500kg vehicles, e.g. Land Cruiser, Land Rover, Subaru etc.
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  #61  
Old 7 Feb 2013
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Originally Posted by JulianVoelcker View Post
Congratulations Dave on the purchase. The Colorados/Prados are great little trucks.

As you say the chances are you have a LSD at the back - if you can jack up one rear wheel with the transfer case in Neutral, if there is an LSD you should struggle to turn the lift wheel by hand (actually I doubt you will be able to turn it).

If it turns but a little stiffly then it will be an open diff.

If you have the LSD it is essential that you use proper LSD oil in it, they don't last long with straight diff oil.

Other things to look out for...
1. The engines are very prone to overheating. Check the rad, hoses and water pump for leaks or other problems and also check the coolant - if it isn't nice clear red colour, use a chemical flush, following instructions to a "T" and then thoroughly flush before filling up with Toyota Red Coolant.

2. ON standard suspension they are prone to rusting around the rear axle and around the top of the fuel tank - if these areas are relatively ok, steam clean and treat with rust treatment, otherwise if rusty get it checked by a professional mechanic - we have come across rusty diffs leaking and suspension mounting brackets rusting - particularly the top link ones because the drain holes get blocked and so they fill up with salty road water - we always enlarge the drain holes to avoid the problem.

3. You can sometimes get starting/running problems - this is usually down to the fuel pipes on the top of the fuel tank (under the boot) rusting and leaking - the tell tale is the top of the tank being very damp. The only solution is to drop the tank and replace the fuel pick-up in the tank and then rust treat.

4. Depending on where you are going it is worth getting a front bash plate.

5. If an auto, make sure it has a good supply of fresh oil - this is often left out of services.

That covers most things, but if you have any questions, don't hesitate to post here.
Muchas Gracias indeed!
Thanks for taking the time to post this Julian.
It's very early days and I will take a look at all of your inputs - I have a lot of confidence in the vehicle which has a good service record, is waxoiled beneath and I got it from a dealer with a 3 month warranty and a brand new MOT with no advisories - that gives me a bit of time for any glitches to show up.
One thing regarding the radiator: I gather that the rad can fail and cause contamination of the auto gear box oil.
What say you about this?

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  #62  
Old 8 Feb 2013
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Originally Posted by Walkabout View Post
I have a lot of confidence in the vehicle which has a good service record, is waxoiled beneath and I got it from a dealer with a 3 month warranty and a brand new MOT with no advisories - that gives me a bit of time for any glitches to show up.
Not to rain on your parade, but waxoil is often used to cover up rust problems, most warranties tend to be worthless unless the car actually stops dead (although manufacturers dealer warranties tend to be better) and even wrecks can pass an MOT.

On the warranty front the first 80 series I bought had a gearbox problem that had been masked by a fresh oil change, it got worse and within warranty period I asked to get them to fix it and it turned out that the warranty only covered the repairs if the vehicle was dead in the road - a progressive slipping wasn't sufficient to justify a claim!

My advise is always to try several examples of the model you are looking to buy before you get your money out of the bank. That way you should have a better feel for the vehicle when you do your final test drive.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Walkabout View Post
One thing regarding the radiator: I gather that the rad can fail and cause contamination of the auto gear box oil.
What say you about this?
Yes it can happen when the rad gets weakened through rot usually from not using proper coolant. If you have any doubts about the rad swap it out ideally with a factory one - you can never be sure with cheap one's off ebay!
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  #63  
Old 8 Feb 2013
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Originally Posted by JulianVoelcker View Post
Not to rain on your parade, but waxoil is often used to cover up rust problems, most warranties tend to be worthless unless the car actually stops dead (although manufacturers dealer warranties tend to be better) and even wrecks can pass an MOT.

On the warranty front the first 80 series I bought had a gearbox problem that had been masked by a fresh oil change, it got worse and within warranty period I asked to get them to fix it and it turned out that the warranty only covered the repairs if the vehicle was dead in the road - a progressive slipping wasn't sufficient to justify a claim!

My advise is always to try several examples of the model you are looking to buy before you get your money out of the bank. That way you should have a better feel for the vehicle when you do your final test drive.



Yes it can happen when the rad gets weakened through rot usually from not using proper coolant. If you have any doubts about the rad swap it out ideally with a factory one - you can never be sure with cheap one's off ebay!
Thanks again for the points! I think they are valuable for the future for anyone else who is looking at these trucks, + myself of course.
About the waxoil, I was aware of how it can be used to cover up problems and I said something on that to the dealer; this waxoil was applied in 2010, with the vehicle imported to the UK in 2005. Looking the dealer guy hard in the eye, one has to make a decision about "truth and trust".
Ditto about warranties; I have had them in the past and claimed on one just once for a second hand vehicle (I have had more warranty claims for brand new vehicles actually). But, yes, I don't have a high level of reliance on such warranties - it is more of a nice to have, giving me 3 months to do that "look 'em right in the eye" thing if I have to go back with it; certainly if I have to use it, it would be as "back to base".

I'm intrigued about how an oil change covers up a fault in a gearbox??
I've been aware that "thickener" additives can be shoved in to silence noises.

More positively, the vehicle is running very smoothly with the temp gauge aligned all the time with the bottom of the temp symbol on the dial - that looks good to me.
Also, the coolant is definitely red but I can't say that it is "Toyota's own"; I will keep an eye on this and I may change it in any case for the stuff from a Toy dealership.

Good talking about such issues.
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  #64  
Old 8 Feb 2013
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Originally Posted by twenty4seven View Post
Well done on your purchase Dave, all you need to buy is a GPS now
Actually, it has one of those compass attachments on the dash (with another dial that shows the angle of lean and something else I haven't figured yet).
So, I can go back to basic compass and map, the nav method I was brought up with and know best
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  #65  
Old 9 Feb 2013
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Originally Posted by Walkabout View Post
Actually, it has one of those compass attachments on the dash (with another dial that shows the angle of lean and something else I haven't figured yet).
So, I can go back to basic compass and map, the nav method I was brought up with and know best


I changed my radiator Dave, the consequences of a failed radiator could cost you an auto gear box, I also used a genuine one as nearly all pattern Toyota radiators nowadays are rubbish.

If you don't chance your radiator at least consider removing it when you change your coolant (It's easy, bolts are undone through the grill) as all sorts of muck gets trapped between the rad and the air-con condenser and you just cannot clean it within the car. As Julian says keeping the cooling system in tip to condition on the model is important.
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  #66  
Old 9 Feb 2013
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Originally Posted by twenty4seven View Post


I changed my radiator Dave, the consequences of a failed radiator could cost you an auto gear box, I also used a genuine one as nearly all pattern Toyota radiators nowadays are rubbish.

If you don't chance your radiator at least consider removing it when you change your coolant (It's easy, bolts are undone through the grill) as all sorts of muck gets trapped between the rad and the air-con condenser and you just cannot clean it within the car. As Julian says keeping the cooling system in tip to condition on the model is important.
Pay particular attention to coolant temp when operating with aircon on in soft sand in high ambient , as they can overheat !!
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  #67  
Old 9 Feb 2013
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Still listening, still learning

I'm definitely getting the message about radiators.

It appears that quite a few cases of changing them are done as a precaution; what symptoms, beyond the obvious one on the temperature gauge, can occur before failure?
Certainly, there are no leaks obvious at present; rad, hoses etc seem to be fine.

On a related subject, what is a recommended workshop book for this vehicle? (I am used to Haynes manuals for motorbikes).

Reading elsewhere, there is talk of fitting an oil cooler for the auto transmission fluid; I presume such an arrangement completely bypasses and negates the use of the main radiator to cool the transmission oil - so, an actual failure of the radiator after fitting one of these would have no effect on the auto box???
(Got to say that from a cursory glance I can't see where such a cooler could fit).

I've had the cover off the spare wheel today and it is a different tyre from the 4 in contact with the road - a Dunlop Grandtrek AT2 (M & S marked).
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  #68  
Old 11 Feb 2013
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Unfortunately there aren't any tell tales on the rad failure, but the key would be to keep to Toyota coolant which contains rust/rot inhibitors and also avoid cheap replacement rads.

Manual wise, your best bet is to try to track down a Haynes manual for the Prado in Aus (ISBN 9781563928215) or see if you can download some of the factory manuals.

Yes, you could fit a separate oil cooler in front of the rad/aircon core as opposed to using the bottom of the rad - even if using the one in the rad it's worth adding an extra one if you are planning on a lot of sand/mud work or a lot of towing, all of which can lead to the gearbox over heating.
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  #69  
Old 13 Feb 2013
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Originally Posted by JulianVoelcker View Post
- if you can jack up one rear wheel with the transfer case in Neutral, if there is an LSD you should struggle to turn the lift wheel by hand (actually I doubt you will be able to turn it).

That covers most things, but if you have any questions, don't hesitate to post here.
OK, here's a rather long winded question.
I've looked at one document that shows the jacking positions as dead centre of the Prado, at the front and back - at the back it shows jacking against the centre of the differential while for the front the jacking point seems to be just to the rear of the centre line of the front wheels (these are "sketchy" line diagrams in a manual but I think I am interpreting them correctly). The main point is that all jacking is shown as being on the longitudinal centre line.

In contrast, the jack supplied with the car (which seems to be a genuine Jap version) has illustrations (more sketches) of jacking the rear axle offset to either side of the differential. For the front, the same sketch shows jacking inline with the centre line of the wheels, in total contrast to the manual, and offset from the vehicle longitudinal centreline.

The jack head itself, IMO, has quite a small point of contact with the vehicle; so, are there specific jacking points under the car into which the top of the jack fits? (I have yet to crawl right in there, you can tell).
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  #70  
Old 13 Feb 2013
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Unfortunately the jack doesn't fit on to any particular slot.

What we have done in the past for 80 series owners is to make up a small cradle that sits on top of the factory jack to cup the axle or chassis rail - this would work for you as well.
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  #71  
Old 13 Feb 2013
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Thanks again

Well that makes sense; it crossed my mind to use a bit of plywood on top of the jack to spread the load a bit, but your idea must be more substantial.
Anyway, when the snow and the cold winds have cleared off I aim to crawl around under there to see what is to be seen and compare that with these Japanese sketches.
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  #72  
Old 16 Feb 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JulianVoelcker View Post
Unfortunately there aren't any tell tales on the rad failure, but the key would be to keep to Toyota coolant which contains rust/rot inhibitors and also avoid cheap replacement rads.

Manual wise, your best bet is to try to track down a Haynes manual for the Prado in Aus (ISBN 9781563928215) or see if you can download some of the factory manuals.

Yes, you could fit a separate oil cooler in front of the rad/aircon core as opposed to using the bottom of the rad - even if using the one in the rad it's worth adding an extra one if you are planning on a lot of sand/mud work or a lot of towing, all of which can lead to the gearbox over heating.

Re extra trans cooler ,very good advice , plumb in as supplementary to one in rad , if you can find place other than in front of rad & condenser even better as you are not then passing heated air back into cooling flow .
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  #73  
Old 17 Feb 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tacr2man View Post
Re extra trans cooler ,very good advice , plumb in as supplementary to one in rad , if you can find place other than in front of rad & condenser even better as you are not then passing heated air back into cooling flow .
.
.
.
NO! NO! NO!

Not to be plumbed in "in line" with the one in the rad.
The one in the rad is the one that will fail.
You need to totally not use that one built into the bottom of the rad.
Totally disconnect the bottom rad auto box cooler, and only use the new cooler that you have bought.

vette
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  #74  
Old 17 Feb 2013
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Originally Posted by uk_vette View Post
.
.
.
NO! NO! NO!

Not to be plumbed in "in line" with the one in the rad.
The one in the rad is the one that will fail.
You need to totally not use that one built into the bottom of the rad.
Totally disconnect the bottom rad auto box cooler, and only use the new cooler that you have bought.

vette
Sounds like needs a new rad as well then , as its a good idea to help warm auto trans up from cold JMHO
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