We recently moved back to the States after a 6 year hiatus. Bought a couple of old but good Toyotas for the wife and I.
Mine is an '04 Sequoia with a 4.7l V8 - the dependable 2UZ-FE you get in the Landcruiser down in Oz etc. Great engine.
The body and interior was spotless, so I felt pretty good about the previous owner giving the vehicle all the attention it deserved.
The motor gave no issues and was smooth as silk to drive. The only problem... Abysmal fuel consumption. 12,9mpg. I had thought it was my heavy happy foot, but I thought I'd check the usual suspects myself.
So I bought a fuel filter, PCV valve and 8 new plugs.
Replaced the PCV, and fuel filter, and left the plugs till the motor had cooled some. Well was I in for a surprise. The plugs were loose... dry to the point of squeaking as they came out, and the center electrodes were almost down to the insulation. Gaps about 0.100" - see for yourselves.
Its not as if its hard to change a plug on a V8, is it? And at $1,76 each who wouldn't do it? Well it does have a full service history, some 41 entries on the carfax... and since they are mostly all the same dealership, I now know who to stay away from...
Going to do the timing belt and water pump next weekend, just in case... but I'm sure the next tanks will go a lot further!
Hope this helps,
If there's no check engine lights, most places think nothing is wrong. get yourself a good set of NGK Lazer Iridiums. Great spark plugs. I do most of my own maintenance just to prevent issues like you are experiencing.
The previous owner sure got his money's worth out of those plugs!
My daily driver (2007 Honda Element) has almost 100,000 miles on its original set of plugs (NGKs). I pulled one at 75,000 miles and it still looked brand new, so I put it back in. I have a replacement set of new NGK plugs, I'll probably put them in at 100,000 miles just on principle.
I have ya all beat!
We went 250,000 miles in a Dodge Grand caravan without a plug or wire change.
I keep asking my "trusted mechanic" about changing them and his reply was " Do you have poor gas mileage?
Him -- does it run well?
Him - save your money.
He ran the "Best damn garage in Newmarket NH" and the whole north east.
When he told me that something needed attention I knew it should be fixed!
He retired and sold the business to one of his employees who is also very good.
My 04 Tacoma claims the plugs are good for 100K, but at 60K, they looked like yours (the smog guy told me my plugs read poor on his machine). Now the dealer wanted around $200 to change the 4 plugs. My cost on the plugs (I do get a discount at the parts house) was around $35 (yes, I bought the expensive plugs), and I was able to change the plugs in 45 minutes--and that's counting looking for the tools, figuring out how to get to all the plugs--and finding out each plug has its own coil, just like the T; checking the gap on each, putting anti-seize on the threads, and Caig-lube on the spark plug ends. I figure an experienced mechanic, with tools at hand could have done it in about 15 minutes (but probably wouldn't have done the anti-seize and Caig-lube!). Yep, a money-maker for the Dealer alright!
I was amazed that the engine ran with the wide gap mine had! It did run better afterwards though!