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How big a deal is it to remove and install a carburetor?

The Chilton makes it sound simple:

‘Tag and disconnect all fuel, vacuum, coolant and electrical lines or
hoses leading from the carburetor’
‘Disconnect the accelerator linkage’
‘Remove the 4 carburetor mounting bolts and lift off the
carburetor and its gasket’

Et vóila!

If I do this, inspect all the hoses (etc.), replace any that look bad,
clean everything - will I find a problem that I can fix? Or would I
waste my time?

Year Idle Mileage
2005 0791 146,803
2007 0812 147,770
2009 1024 148,740
2011 1166 149,798
2013 1149 150,085
2015 1145 150,656
2017 >1200 150,996

The idle rpms were measured by the emissions tester. I haven’t done anything serious to the carburetor other than fix the choke before that 2005 test. (Actually, I failed the first test, then fixed the choke.)
'87 Toyota pickup DLX 4-cylinder 5-speed manual red. The VECI says it’s supposed to idle at 700.

Chilton also tells me to drain the coolant first - does the carburetor use coolant?

Some Toyota carburetors used chokes with a coolant chamber and some used water jackets on the intake manifold that were open at the carburetor space. If you are unable to determine why draining the radiator is instructed I advise you drain it. If you can see where the coolant is involved and drain the radiator below that point there shouldn’t be a problem though.

If you mark all the hoses and wires as instructed you will likely be happy you did in the end.

Sometimes (not always) increasing idle speeds are caused by tiny cracks in vacuum hoses. If you are familiar with vacuum hoses and have never replaced them in this truck, you can do that, one hose at a time. I’m not promising anything, but if you do it carefully it might work, and if it doesn’t, it was pretty cheap and probably should have been done anyway.

You only drove this truck 4000 miles in 12 years?

Every manual I have seen either makes something look very easy or very difficult. The easy ones are like the instructions you have copied; disconnect this & that and installation is reverse of removal. When you actually go to do it, disconnecting some of the items could be a royal PITA and that line about “installation is reverse of removal” takes a lot of time to actually do :slight_smile:
The crazy difficult ones like you have to remove the engine from the car first, then change the belt. I go and look, sure belt removal is not very easy, but with a few trick moves can be done and for sure beats removing the engine.

Now as far as carb removal, I have do it, just tag/label everything properly. If I can do it then you can too!

I am not sure if it would fix your problem, but seems like you don’t drive this truck much and maybe things need some cleaning. Alternatively, you can lend it to us so we can put some real miles on it!

I no longer mark and label things. I take pics with my digital camera. I know the rest of you take pics with your cell phone. The last time I had a cell phone was 21 years ago. I have not missed it once.

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Yeah…isn’t it absurd that they’re smogging a 30+ year-old vehicle that gets driven a mile a day? OP will probably put out more smog trying to pass emissions, than passing emissions will ever prevent him from releasing.

(But, hey, anything to mess with poor people, driving old cars, I guess…)

Me too.
While my cell phone is capable of taking pics (I did it once), I far prefer my camera. With it I can print and keep the photos for posterity. Besides, it’s easier to look at printed pictures when doing reassembly than it is to look at my cell phone. I guess I’m just old fashioned. :grin:

Don’t feel too bad about being old-fashioned. Most of us are.

I take pictures of things that have lots of parts and aren’t obvious to me. And I also label hoses and wires with strips of tape with little notes on them. Carburetors from the era of emissions control before fuel injection are the worst, sometimes 6 or so vacuum hoses. Photos don’t help much because I can’t tell one vacuum line from another, so I label them.

I use parts blow-up diagrams to help put carbs back together, but they leave out some gaskets sometimes. Makes me crazy.

[quote=“meanjoe75fan, post:6, topic:99772”]
isn’t it absurd that they’re smogging a 30+ year-old vehicle that gets driven a mile a day? OP will probably put out more smog trying to pass emissions, than passing emissions will ever prevent him from releasing. [/quote]

I’d rather live in a community with clean air, to which I contribute by bicycling 5K miles annually and driving a couple of hundred. A rule that exempted low-mileage users would be more complicated and give odometer-cheaters an exploit. If I were in better personal shape I’d drive more: out to the wilderness to hike and camp. I hope to get better; owning this vehicle is a reminder of the possibility.

When I failed my first emissions test in NM (after passing them no problem in CA) I figured out that my choke wasn’t working; the test spurred me to fix it: it made me better off, not just the air-breathers of NM.

Failing this test tells me I have a problem that’s been growing over the last 12 years that I want to fix but was just too lazy to. It’ll be good for me and everybody else. If I were a better auto mechanic I would have fixed it 10 years ago and wouldn’t have burnt so much fuel in the process. At least I’ve taken a couple of nice hikes.

I’m not poor - I just want to figure it out myself. If time really mattered I’d take it to a shop.

Vehicles are exempted from emissions testing by age not mileage.


Where in NM do you live (approximately?) I lived up in the 4 corners in the late 20th century, and I never got smogged, and never knew anybody who did. There were some real stinkers, too! I’m guessing the ABQ/SF area is the only place “built up” enough to need it.

At the very least, the time and effort expended smogging old cars, driven very little, is effort applied inefficiently, which could realize greater returns applied elsewhere. AKA “opportunity costs.” The time and effort expended smogging old cars COULD have been applied cleaning trash out of wetlands, or…

And I’m glad to hear you’re not poor…but we can’t say that of everyone driving a 30-y.o. car. Put plainly, the ecological Powers That Be have alternated between indifference and contempt re: how their policies impacted the working class. (Example: Cash For Clunkers “dried up” the used car market, forcing up both used car prices, and used parts, making it just that much harder to be a “working stiff.”)

…and that’s a bad thing for everyone who cares about the environment, because such cold handling naturally breeds reciprocal contempt, which makes it all too easy for somebody hostile to ecological concerns to exploit populist contempt for personal gain…at which point, the real problems start! (Speaking hypothetically and in a general way, of course…)

Except his is over 30 years old, and NOT exempted, so I guess not. Me, I’m counting the days until my 1994 is out of inspection (2019!) I could also not drive more than 5,000 miles (with my odometer connected!) per year, but I’d prefer to play by the book, if I can.

In one of your posts you said you had to retest 02/06/2017. Did you pass?

In Bernalillo County, I have to test every 2 years; an '85 would have to test every year. At some even older age one is exempt. I like emissions tests: I like clean air. I want to get my idle down to 700. I’ve been lazy and irresponsible. I’m not complaining.

Albuquerque. NMans outside Bernalillo County don’t have to get tested. I could register it at a friend’s in Sandoval County if I wanted to cheat.

I’m not poor because I drive a 30-y.o. car (and other, similar, economies).

I misunderstood. The MVD sent me a postcard and an e-mail which told me my application had to be mailed in by February 6. When I checked my records to see that my current registration expires February 28, I queried them and found out they meant that if I mailed it in I should mail it that soon to guarantee the sticker would get back to me by March 1. Since I file on-line, and don’t need a sticker if I don’t drive it, I have more time. And if I’m late I pay a $30 penalty, which isn’t onerous, is probably cheaper than hiring a mechanic.

I made a probe that allowed me to record the ignition coil’s pulsing with my computer; it reads 1170, what it was in 2015. I would probably pass now but it’s close and I’d be embarrassed to fail - and I have a real problem I want to solve. (It failed the first time because the throttle stuck.)

About 1/3 of the country doesn’t even do emissions testing.
Those that do have varying requirements. Many exempt cars over a certain age, some use combustion analyzers on anything older than a '96 (the first year of the OBDII mandate), some only test in certain counties (NH does this). Some use analyzers with dynos (Mass used to do this… I don’t know if they still do), some just use them at idle. Protocols are all over the map.

I agree that Cash for Clunkers was one of the stupidest programs ever concocted

Not only didn’t it really achieve its goals, in my opinion, it removed some very good quality used cars from the market

I saw some of those cars at the local junkyards, and it was a REAL shame. There were many low mileage vehicles that looked to have been in excellent condition, except for the destroyed engines, of course. Before that cash for clunkers disaster, they would have made great used cars for many of us.

And there were so many strings attached to that program, anyways. What a farce :frowning2:

I knew a few guys that had bona fide domestic gas guzzling trucks, but they didn’t qualify for the program, because certain models or model years were excluded, for some stupid reason or other. His model year didn’t qualify, yet the model year before and after did. :confused:

I still mark them, if there are multiple things that look similar and it’s not obvious by length or bend where they go. But pictures are critical…maybe even multiple stages of the process so it’s clear. No cost to take extras…