2nd cam not engaging? - LotusTalk - The Lotus Cars Community
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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-21-2016, 05:28 PM Thread Starter
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2nd cam not engaging?

I've had the 2005 Elise out of barn storage now about a month. Since sunny and warm is only beginning here on the Mid-Coast, I haven't spent a lot of time driving it yet. And since I took early retirement two months ago, I don't need to drive daily. The old TT is used for the beer runs.

I'm concerned that the 2nd cam does not seem to be engaging. Noticed it about two weeks age when I had trouble passing (in a passing zone) a local POS up a long hill.

It usually jumps right out, at the appropriate RPM, WOT. The sound and feel should be there. But it's not. Accelerates strong 6500 - 8000 RPM, but doesn't seem to be on the cam.

No CELs, no idle or other accelerating probs. No 2nd cam problem when I last drove it before storage (I've always made it a point to get on the cam at least once per week to keep up with problems). I've searched here and through Googling 2nd cam, VVT, VVL, etc., but am not finding much help. I do have the factory repair manuals. I disconnected the battery today (for about 2 hours'ish) in hopes of resetting the ECU, but no change.

Is there any way to test for this, the VVT and VVL solenoids, since there is no CEL light showing? Oil change was done about 3000 miles ago, so don't expect a clog, and no indication of cam problems. No apparent rodent-chewed wiring. 50,000 miles. I don't know auto electric, so couldn't do tests myself, but since factory repair is about 4 hours away, I'd have to have my local guy (or Toyota, if necessary) do any electrical tests. Or should I just buy new solenoids and replace them myself? Or is this cost prohibitive? If they are Toyota parts, does anyone know the part numbers (didn't see them on them on the LT parts cross list) or the Toyota nomenclature for identifying what I need? Might there be a fuse or relay I can check or replace?

Any help/suggestions welcomed. It's still great fun to drive, but I do want the performance the car offers.
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-21-2016, 06:09 PM
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When my car was NA there was no doubt there was a changeover when the cam kicked in. At one I was not getting engagement and my VVT solenoid was broken and had to be replaced. Ymmv

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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-21-2016, 07:38 PM
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Do you hear a timing change at the rpm switch point?
There is a solenoid for lift and for timing (vvt, vvt-i, or something like that )
My exige s also had a lift issue as well, there was an audible change during the switch point, but no extra bump in power. There was also a lag with the rpms as well.
Assuming that i had a damage solenoid i took off the solenoid and put a volt meter to it which shoed that it was working.... I reassembled everything and cleaned the cam screens. After that everything worked fine....
I can only assume i had a bad electrical connection....
Fwiw, the lift solenoid is easy to get to, the timing one is not, at least on an exige...

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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-21-2016, 08:21 PM
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I seem to remember a bad fuse causing similar, but not sure at all. Easy to ck.

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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-21-2016, 09:44 PM
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VVL problem diagnosis

To test the VVL system, put 12V across the OCV at idle (the connector just has two pins and it's a solenoid. If the engine dies, the car went onto lift and the engagement system is working.

Otherwise your ECU isn't telling lift to engage for some reason, and you need to check your cooling system temperature sensor and the oil pressure sensor on the OCV.

If your car keeps running, your lift isn't working for some reason. Take the OCV out and check that the plungers work when 12V is applied.

The ECU won't activate lift if it doesn't think the coolant temp is right (min 72C)

The fuse in the engine bay for VVL and VVT is R6.

Here is the relevant section from the Toyota Manual for the VVL:

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File Type: pdf Toyota_VVTL_manual.pdf (112.0 KB, 44 views)

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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-22-2016, 04:43 AM
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My car had the VVT solenoid replaced by the previous owner not long before I bought it. He described the exact same symptoms to me when it happened.

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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-22-2016, 07:51 AM
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A buddy had the same thing recently. Unfortunately the high speed cam was wiped.
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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-22-2016, 03:08 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iana View Post
VVL problem diagnosis

To test the VVL system, put 12V across the OCV at idle (the connector just has two pins and it's a solenoid. If the engine dies, the car went onto lift and the engagement system is working.

Otherwise your ECU isn't telling lift to engage for some reason, and you need to check your cooling system temperature sensor and the oil pressure sensor on the OCV.

If your car keeps running, your lift isn't working for some reason. Take the OCV out and check that the plungers work when 12V is applied.

The ECU won't activate lift if it doesn't think the coolant temp is right (min 72C)

The fuse in the engine bay for VVL and VVT is R6.

Here is the relevant section from the Toyota Manual for the VVL:

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File Type: pdf Toyota_VVTL_manual.pdf (112.0 KB, 44 views)

Good info !

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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-22-2016, 04:28 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the replies. I'll get into the shop manual tomorrow. Will check fuse R6, too. Anyone know if the solenoids are Toyota-available parts?
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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-23-2016, 07:19 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by <12parsecs View Post
Anyone know if the solenoids are Toyota-available parts?
they should be... im still able to get OE 2zz parts from my local toyota dealer

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post #11 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-23-2016, 07:40 PM Thread Starter
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Fuse seems OK, but will replace it tomorrow.

My manual doesn't show location or replacement info for the solenoids. Matter of fact, it does not reference "solenoids" at all. Googled a bunch of VVT-I and VVTL-I sites and got mostly Celica GT-S info (but no diagrams or replacement processes). MonkeyWrench has a diagram but it is a bit confusing - may call them tomorrow. Called the local Toyota, but too late to get parts desk or the service manager (both groups have come out to talk about the car when I've gone there for other parts, so should get some help).
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post #12 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-23-2016, 11:49 PM
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Dont have the part nos but the attached pics may help.

you probably need to replace the whole OCV unit, if that is the problem.The solenoid is part of the valve.

If you take off the Oil Control Valve (OCV) to check operation, then check the strainer / filter is clean (indicated in second pic).

But before you dismantle, have you verified that OCV is not working as above?

Also check terminals are clean on water temp sensor.
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post #13 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-24-2016, 07:36 AM
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Real simple test on both the V and L solenoids.

You can simply charge them with 12V and see if the car stalls at idle. It will if they work and if it does, those two systems are functional.

Additionally, if lift is not engaging, there's a validating oil pressure sensor on the head right next to the solenoid that has the sole intention in life of trigging a MIL if lift doesn't engage when requested....

You can check that your "lift bolts" are not broke and that you don't have any broken rockers.

....and since it was mentioned and people keep doing it, disconnecting the battery to reset the ECU is the equivalent to performing a rain dance to generate precipitation...

Hope that helps,

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Last edited by turbophil; 05-24-2016 at 08:24 AM. Reason: some spelling... but surely not all of it...
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post #14 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-17-2018, 07:26 AM
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Originally Posted by <12parsecs View Post
Fuse seems OK, but will replace it tomorrow.

My manual doesn't show location or replacement info for the solenoids. Matter of fact, it does not reference "solenoids" at all. Googled a bunch of VVT-I and VVTL-I sites and got mostly Celica GT-S info (but no diagrams or replacement processes). MonkeyWrench has a diagram but it is a bit confusing - may call them tomorrow. Called the local Toyota, but too late to get parts desk or the service manager (both groups have come out to talk about the car when I've gone there for other parts, so should get some help).
Hi buddy, have you founds was the cause to this issue?

I'm having same issue, lift works and engine runs great, revs to 8000+, however the power in 2nd cam is not there. Everything else seems fine including the camshafts...
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post #15 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-17-2018, 10:58 AM
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My car seems to run fine. How much of a difference you feel when the cam switches over? Are you supposed to feel a bump, different sound, etc.?
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post #16 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-17-2018, 11:27 AM
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Like Iana pointed out try pulling the screen from the OCV. I had a similar problem in my 2zz corolla not engaging lift. Pulled and cleaned and it solved that.
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post #17 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-17-2018, 11:53 AM
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Actually 2nd cam is there as it revs to 8k... but the transition to it is weaker, and it doesn't pull as strong. It used to switch instantly at 6100-6200 rpm. Now it takes it slowly, nothing happens at 6200... sounds changes somewhere around 6700, and at 7000 rpm it goes on ok. I have it measure on my pbox last year vs now, and it is noticeable slower e.g. 100-160.

I've been trying multiple things and now its at the workshop... ECU works and gives signal at 6100-6200 promptly. OCV also works, idle test stalls engine instantly. Cam and rockers were inspected and everything supposed to be "perfect". However the power in lift is 25% less what it used to be... Other than that it runs smooth, no issues with hesitation or anything alike :-/
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post #18 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-17-2018, 11:54 AM
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My car seems to run fine. How much of a difference you feel when the cam switches over? Are you supposed to feel a bump, different sound, etc.?
When it used to work there was quite noticeable and instant engine note change, and torque bump too...
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post #19 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-17-2018, 11:56 AM
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Like Iana pointed out try pulling the screen from the OCV. I had a similar problem in my 2zz corolla not engaging lift. Pulled and cleaned and it solved that.
Thanks, we did that, and wasn't dirty and didn't help...
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post #20 of 22 (permalink) Old 05-17-2018, 12:18 PM
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I know you said the cams were okay but what you are describing sounds like a wiped cam. Take a high resolution picture of the peaks of the intake cam lobes and post them up here.
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