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TOYTOA CAMRY 96 code P0302

my car started acting strange yesterday.

engine revs in idle, power is limited in drive

noticed on this site about checking for engine light,

noticed light on today, and brought over to autozone where they checked the code for free, thanks to someones info on this site

code is P0302 , says #2 is missfiring, will be having towed to repair shop tomorrow, any suggestions?

b4 I do

Possible causes.

Bad spark plug

Bad spark plug wire

Bad ignition coil

Vacuum leak

Low compression

Bad fuel injector

i am not very car savvy , but is there a way i can check for the vaccum leak myself?

Michaelc: When is the last time you had the plug wires/plugs and cap/rotor/coil packs (if so equipped) replaced? If it’s been more than a few years, this is an easy DIY job. Check out the repair info on the Autozone web site for instructions on replacing plugs and wires. You should also replace the air filter, PCV valve if it hasn’t been done within the last year. This may very well be your issue.


Just to add what Alex may have been too polite to note, You need to do the stuff he listed (if they have not been done) even if the car is running fine. You need to have all those kinds of things done before you start hunting for other problems and the chances are good that once you get the maintenance done, you will find that you don’t have any of the problems.

As for at the shop, I suggest that you may want to move on to a different shop if you are thinking of a dealer and you defiantly should not use a quick oil change place. Once you are there, don’t try and explain what they should do. You want to explain why you have come, it is their job to figure out what needs to be done. For example if you want the coil checked, they might go ahead and do that, even though they heard a vacuum leak when you drove in.

Based upon your admitted lack of “savy” I say leave your car alone,let the shop find and fix your concern.I don’t want you to “install” another problem that makes it harder for the shop to get you going again.

Lots of good suggestions. I agree that if you ar having it towed, let THEM tell you what is wrong with it. Don’t suggest anything. But,be educated before you get there. I don’t know if you have a 1MZ or a 5SF (6 or 4 clinder) so there are two different lists to go by. They pretty much mirror eachother though. Spark plugs, coils, wires, compression, injector. That is about the list in general from most fequent to least. I warn you about using aftermarket parts. If you do not use Toyota parts, make sure that you are getting good quaility parts, not cheap walmart stuff. A P0302 code is one cylinder, so it should be pretty easy to figure out. IF it was random it could from fuel issues to bad igniton, and if was two cylinders side by side it could be a gasket or head failure.
Here is the strategy. When the computer sends a signal to fire a coil, it pretty muh knows when and where it should see the result. Through the crank sensor, it looks for a momentary increase in engine RPM. When it sends a signal to fire, the coil sends a signal back (through the IGF wire) that it has indeed fired. If it does not send this signal in response, you will get a different code altogether. After the IGF signal is recieved, it looks for the crank sensor signal. If it does not see the momentary increase in RPM, usually after two malfunctions, it will set the code. IF it is a hard fault, as in the cylinder is pretty much dead altogether, the light will flash, becuase there is potential for engine damage resulting. I hope this arms you with enough info to be a littlemore confident.
By the way, those engines (if it is a 4 cylinder) are famous for the spark plug tubes to leak and fill with oil, causing the spark to go where you don’t want it to. So don’t be surprised if thy suggest a valve cover gasket and tube reseal along with plugs and wires. Good luck…