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My Toyota smokes when started

Dear Neto,

I have a 2000 Toyota L Touring. The car has a bad misfire and sometimes backfires at both the intake and the exhaust. It also blows some smoke at the intake, especially when started.

I have had the plugs, the coil packs and the injectors checked, they are in good condition.

However, my mechanic realised that whenever he pulls out the injector harness connector on cylinders two and three, there was not much change in the engine vibrations even though the computer signals are present. What could be the problem?

Dickens.

Dear Dickens,

I would try to swap the injectors and see how they react in the healthy cylinders. Try the same with the coil packs and see what happens. If there’s a normal reaction then I believe the electronic control unit and the wiring harness is okay.

Let your mechanic make sure that the engine is not out of timing and check the crankshaft and camshaft position sensors. Since they are close to each other, I suspect that the head gasket portion  between them is broken thus mixing the intake and exhaust products of the two cylinders.

This could be the reason why you have backfiring and smoke coming out of the intake.

You might need to get the cylinder head removed, and the head gasket and valve seats checked.