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I just saw this. I agree analyzing the problem is the way to go. My initial recommendation was based on a bad assumption that you had a high mileage FJ. Those old sensors didn't look too good anyway. My error codes started showing up after the first time I ever ran out of gas. I'm sure there was all kinds of junk at the bottom of the gas tank that was sucked into my engine and out the exhaust. It sounds like your problem is specific to that side of the vehicle. I guess you could have an exhaust leak or a vacuum leak. Hopefully it's not the CAT. The OBD2 reader should help you determine what's wrong. There was a link in of the the other forum threads of a YouTube guy that explained trouble shooting real well. I remember he wouldn't look straight into the camera. Sorry no link but you'll know whom I'm talking about when you see him. Over several videos he explained everything on how vacuum leaks, air leaks, weak pumps, bad mass flow sensors, bad O2 sensors, and bad air/fuel sensors looked on the OBD2 plots.
 

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I found the guy on YouTube. Search for the following title on Yoube.

Secret of Engine Problem Diagnosis- Fuel Trims Pt.1

His user name is Schrodingers Box.

Hope that helps.
 

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I had the same symptoms come up after the following series of events @ 160k miles:

1. Alternator died, which lead to complete battery drain while driving
2. Replaced alternator
3. Seafoamed via vacuum line and drove hard to clear system (100 miles later) --- this is when the codes appeared
4. Replaced ORIGINAL (eek) spark plugs with NGK iridium (50 miles later)
5. Cleaned MAF sensor and AFE dry filter
6. Seafoamed crank case and changed oil with Amsoil
7. Drove 1k+ miles, resetting codes and clearing computer.

P0420 & P0430 would not go away. Torque pro showed catalyst efficiency below threshold on both banks. I purchased a pair of non-foulers, drilled the centers to 1/2", and installed this weekend. Codes are gone.
 

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Discussion Starter #24
I found the guy on YouTube. Search for the following title on Yoube.

Secret of Engine Problem Diagnosis- Fuel Trims Pt.1

His user name is Schrodingers Box.

Hope that helps.
Thanks for that! I watched the entire thing and the videos gave me a better idea on what to look for. I also stumbled upon another video that showed me what readings to look for (on the OBD2 scanner) and how to troubleshoot the cat.

This was a great resource.
 

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Discussion Starter #25
I had the same symptoms come up after the following series of events @ 160k miles:

1. Alternator died, which lead to complete battery drain while driving
2. Replaced alternator
3. Seafoamed via vacuum line and drove hard to clear system (100 miles later) --- this is when the codes appeared
4. Replaced ORIGINAL (eek) spark plugs with NGK iridium (50 miles later)
5. Cleaned MAF sensor and AFE dry filter
6. Seafoamed crank case and changed oil with Amsoil
7. Drove 1k+ miles, resetting codes and clearing computer.

P0420 & P0430 would not go away. Torque pro showed catalyst efficiency below threshold on both banks. I purchased a pair of non-foulers, drilled the centers to 1/2", and installed this weekend. Codes are gone.
WOW! Sounds ver similar to my situation. I read about the non-fouler and wouldn't be sure if I'd pass inspection for California smog. With my lowered cars, the techs gave up on trying to inspect the underneath I don't think it would be the same with the FJ haha!
 

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Discussion Starter #26
UPDATE:

Gas cap was replaced and the code went off for about 70 miles... and then it came back on.

I've caved in and already set up an appointment to get the cat replaced this Friday. I would do it my self, but I don't want to wrestle and break my back with some rusty header bolts. I'll leave it to the pros.

*insert big sigh
 

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UPDATE:

Gas cap was replaced and the code went off for about 70 miles... and then it came back on.

I've caved in and already set up an appointment to get the cat replaced this Friday. I would do it my self, but I don't want to wrestle and break my back with some rusty header bolts. I'll leave it to the pros.

*insert big sigh
I still get the feeling that you're shot-gunning this problem, don't have a good enough understanding of the OBDII monitoring system to properly interpret the code data, and are moving a little too quickly on the expensive cat replacement.

For instance, you originally said you had a "random misfire" code, and "corrected" it by cleaning the MAF. In the absence of other severe engine problems, a dirty MAF would almost never be capable of causing a random misfire.

And you thought that replacing the gap cap could possibly have an effect on a P040?? A leaking gap cap seal would trigger an OBD code relating to the evaporative emissions control system, NOT the fuel feedback system or catalytic converter efficiency.

What are you going to do if the P040 code comes back 2-3 driving cycles after replacing the cat?

There are MANY more diagnostic tests, measurements and evaluations that you should do before spending $1,000+ on replacing a "suspected" bad cat.

Lastly, did you run a CARFAX before purchasing the vehicle, or look at any other documentation that would verify the indicated mileage? If the cat is truly bad, I would suspect that the 89K mileage shown on the odometer is not correct.
 

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UPDATE:

Gas cap was replaced and the code went off for about 70 miles... and then it came back on.

I've caved in and already set up an appointment to get the cat replaced this Friday. I would do it my self, but I don't want to wrestle and break my back with some rusty header bolts. I'll leave it to the pros.

*insert big sigh
I still get the feeling that you're shot-gunning this problem, don't have a good enough understanding of the OBDII monitoring system to properly interpret the code data, and are moving a little too quickly on the expensive cat replacement.

For instance, you originally said you had a "random misfire" code, and "corrected" it by cleaning the MAF. In the absence of other severe engine problems, a dirty MAF would almost never be capable of causing a random misfire.

And you thought that replacing the gas cap could possibly have an effect on a P040 code?? A leaking gap cap seal would trigger an OBD code relating to the evaporative emissions control system, NOT the fuel feedback system or catalytic converter efficiency.

What are you going to do if the P040 code comes back 2-3 driving cycles after replacing the cat?

There are MANY more diagnostic tests, measurements and evaluations that you should do before spending $1,000+ on replacing a "suspected" bad cat.

Lastly, did you run a CARFAX before purchasing the vehicle, or look at any other documentation that would verify the indicated mileage? If the cat is truly bad, I would suspect that the 89K mileage shown on the odometer is not correct.
 

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Discussion Starter #29 (Edited)
I still get the feeling that you're shot-gunning this problem, don't have a good enough understanding of the OBDII monitoring system to properly interpret the code data, and are moving a little too quickly on the expensive cat replacement.

For instance, you originally said you had a "random misfire" code, and "corrected" it by cleaning the MAF. In the absence of other severe engine problems, a dirty MAF would almost never be capable of causing a random misfire.
I must be mistaken. I was under the guise that the MAF is what tells the ECU what the air/fuel mixture should be based on ambient conditions. If the car is running too lean or rich wouldn't the ECU read that as a misfire? It was code P0300.

And you thought that replacing the gas cap could possibly have an effect on a P040 code?? A leaking gap cap seal would trigger an OBD code relating to the evaporative emissions control system, NOT the fuel feedback system or catalytic converter efficiency.
There are only a hand full of possibilities with code P0420. Using process of elimination, both sensors have been replaced and the code still comes back on. After analyzing my actions, the only delta that has occurred in between the CEL coming on is after refueling. Which is why I decided to give the gas cap a try. It's a $10 risk I was willing to take.


What are you going to do if the P040 code comes back 2-3 driving cycles after replacing the cat?
Since both sensors have been replaced there can only be two possibilities left.
1) Bad Cat
2) Leaky exhaust
If the gasket between the manifold and the block is weak it could be introducing air into the system causing the sensor to
trigger the code

If I replace the cat, the gaskets will be replaced as well. This should eliminate all possibilities, unless I should factor in vacuum leak.


There are MANY more diagnostic tests, measurements and evaluations that you should do before spending $1,000+ on replacing a "suspected" bad cat
I'm open to other tests and happy to try them. Can you please provide examples?

Lastly, did you run a CARFAX before purchasing the vehicle, or look at any other documentation that would verify the indicated mileage? If the cat is truly bad, I would suspect that the 89K mileage shown on the odometer is not correct.[/quote]
The CARFAX came back clean and passed emissions every time. Based on my research, every thing P0420 related was either resolved with replaced sensors or cat. I did notice that there's corrosion in the pipes. Could that have caused it to go bad? I've owned cars with more mileage and none of them had cats that went bad. The only thing the owner did different was take it off roading or water crossings
 

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did you go back to post #6 in this thread from FJtest and ensure all those things...such as MAF cleaned properly, no leaks between airbox and MAF, new spark plugs, proper compression....etc? And you have replaced all 4 sensors (2 air fuel and 2 O2)?

What did you resolve with the K&N filter? Is it an oiled filter?....maybe I missed that response earlier and if so my apologies.
 

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Discussion Starter #31
did you go back to post #6 in this thread from FJtest and ensure all those things...such as MAF cleaned properly, no leaks between airbox and MAF, new spark plugs, proper compression....etc? And you have replaced all 4 sensors (2 air fuel and 2 O2)?

What did you resolve with the K&N filter? Is it an oiled filter?....maybe I missed that response earlier and if so my apologies.
Yessir!

MAF has been cleaned properly
No leaks between airbox and MAF
New spark plugs (denso iridiums)
Compression test has not been done
Only the bank 1 sensors have been replaced since the car was not throwing P0430 (bank 2/ driver side)

In regards to the air filter, it is oiled. The filter was one of the items I replaced prior to the light initially coming on and I wasn't sure if it caused any issues.
 

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FJT:I still get the feeling that you're shot-gunning this problem, don't have a good enough understanding of the OBDII monitoring system to properly interpret the code data, and are moving a little too quickly on the expensive cat replacement.

For instance, you originally said you had a "random misfire" code, and "corrected" it by cleaning the MAF. In the absence of other severe engine problems, a dirty MAF would almost never be capable of causing a random misfire.

LT: I must be mistaken. I was under the guise that the MAF is what tells the ECU what the air/fuel mixture should be based on ambient conditions. If the car is running too lean or rich wouldn't the ECU read that as a misfire? It was code P0300.

FJT: Incorrect. The MAF sensor (mass airflow sensor) ONLY provides information on the mass of air molecules passing through the throttle body, irrespective of air temperature or absolute pressure (altitude). The engine ECU takes the output from the MAF, the engine coolant temperature sensor, the intake air temperature sensor, both channels of the throttle posiion sensor, the exhaust air-fuel sensor, and multiple other sensors to determine the amount of fuel that needs to be injected to maintain the desired 14.7:1 air-fuel ratio. If ANY of these sensors are providing erroneous outputs to the ECU, the air-fuel ratio may be incorrect.

The P0300 fault code indicates that a random/multiple cylinder misfire was detected. This is usually related to an ignition system fault, not a mixture control fault. However, defective spark plugs, defective ignition coil(s), defective crankshaft position sensor, defective/damaged wiring, incorrect valve clearance, defective head gasket, could all be factors to a P0300.


And you thought that replacing the gas cap could possibly have an effect on a P040 code?? A leaking gap cap seal would trigger an OBD code relating to the evaporative emissions control system, NOT the fuel feedback system or catalytic converter efficiency.

LT: There are only a hand full of possibilities with code P0420. Using process of elimination, both sensors have been replaced and the code still comes back on. After analyzing my actions, the only delta that has occurred in between the CEL coming on is after refueling. Which is why I decided to give the gas cap a try. It's a $10 risk I was willing to take.

FJT: Incorrect, there are MANY factors and conditions that can trigger or contribute to a P0420 condition. Regardless, the fault code associated with a loose or damaged gas cap would be an evaporative emissions fault, not a misfire or catalytic converter efficiency code

What are you going to do if the P040 code comes back 2-3 driving cycles after replacing the cat?

LT: Since both sensors have been replaced there can only be two possibilities left.
1) Bad Cat
2) Leaky exhaust
If the gasket between the manifold and the block is weak it could be introducing air into the system causing the sensor to
trigger the code

If I replace the cat, the gaskets will be replaced as well. This should eliminate all possibilities, unless I should factor in vacuum leak. [/B]

FJT: OMG no, as stated above there are literally at LEAST a dozen more additional faults or conditions that can affect mixture control and trigger the codes associated with catalytic converter efficiency.

There are MANY more diagnostic tests, measurements and evaluations that you should do before spending $1,000+ on replacing a "suspected" bad cat.

LT: I’m open to other tests and happy to try them. Can you please provide examples?

Providing a complete working knowledge of how fuel-feedback systems work, and how to troubleshoot them is far beyond the scope of what can be accomplished in a few forum posts. I suggest that you search for "factory service manual" on this forum to see where you can download the complete (180 meg) 2007 FSM. Or, look at the "Technical Documents" section at the PureFJCruiser website and download the relevant sections of the manual from there. There is a tremendous amount of information in the manual on the Emission Control System, the Sequential Fuel Injection System, how everything works, how to check sensor outputs, etc. At a minimum you need a an OBDII code reader, a high-quality digital multimeter, and for some measurements you will need a lab oscilloscope or other type of diagnostic tester.

Lastly, did you run a CARFAX before purchasing the vehicle, or look at any other documentation that would verify the indicated mileage? If the cat is truly bad, I would suspect that the 89K mileage shown on the odometer is not correct.


LT: The CARFAX came back clean and passed emissions every time. Based on my research, every thing P0420 related was either resolved with replaced sensors or cat. I did notice that there's corrosion in the pipes. Could that have caused it to go bad? I've owned cars with more mileage and none of them had cats that went bad. The only thing the owner did different was take it off roading or water crossings.

FJT: Off-roading or water-crossing should not have damaged the front cats. Again, I suspect that your cats are fine, and that your "low cat converter efficiency" code is caused by some other fault that you have not yet isolated.

Since the VERY LAST thing you did before the CEL came on was to change the air filter, re-install the OEM filter and see if that has any effect. Normally it shouldn't. but as part of the troubleshooting process you always "reverse" any recent changes that were made immediately prior to a new problem appearing.
 

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If you do get the cats replaced...please take pics of the old ones on the inside. I want to see the condition of the mesh.
 

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Discussion Starter #34 (Edited)
Alrighty, so the OBD 2 scanner came in the mail. When I ran the emissions tests, it says shows that my cat failed, evap system failed, and oxygen sensor failed.

Watched more YouTube videos to try to understand the readings. Sat in the car and monitored the changes to see if any numbers stood out or deviated far from what was observed up or down.

First thing I noticed that the Oxygen sensor 2 Bank 1 voltage stayed constant at around 0.43 V in comparison the Sensor 2 Bank 2's voltage would oscillate.

In the other image, you'll that on sensor 1 wide range current, it dipped down to -.01mA.

Does this tell us anything or should I be monitoring something else as well?
 

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I’ll let others chime in as far as diagnosing the problem. However, I’ll ask an obvious question. The condition above is with the error codes cleared right. Otherwise you may be in limp mode. Meaning the cpu knows there a problem and is not really reacting normal to the input signals. I’m just clarifying so someone with more experience in this area can interpret the readings.
 

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Discussion Starter #36
Update: Car has been driven a few several hundred miles after cat was replaced... NO MORE CEL!

I had the local Toyota speciality shop look into it, and check if there were any potential causes that were obvious. No internal coolant leaks, injectors seemed to be fine they said, no issue with spark or air.

Truck passed smog too!

At this moment, we can say that this is solved. As to what caused the issue, I'm not 100% sure. We'll just have to wait and see if the same CEL comes up again.
 

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Discussion Starter #38
did you have them save the manifold/cat? Any pics from inside of it?
Hi everybody! Just a quick update, 4,000 miles in and no CEL/ Christmas tree.

I've also attached a few images of the inside of the cat. It looks fine to me, but there could've been blockage or damage on the other end.

Thank you everyone for all your help!
 

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