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Toyota Pressurized Fuel Injector and Upper Cylinder Cleaning Service (With Video)

Hardlymoving writes about do-it-yourself automobile maintenance on various makes and models.

Fuel Injector Cleaner Canister

Fuel Injector Cleaner Canister

If you don't use good quality detergent fuel in a car, the car's fuel injectors may become clogged or leaky. So consider a pressurized fuel system service when these conditions are present: rough engine idle, poor performance, increased fuel use, or bucking under load.

High-detergent fuel additives can help with these conditions, but it may take thousands of miles and repeated treatments until you notice an improvement. Using high quality "Tier 3" gasoline is a good habit to get into, but it takes time and mileage to notice a difference.

Using a pressurized container to inject fuel injection cleaning solution.

Using a pressurized container to inject fuel injection cleaning solution.

How This Pressurized Cleaning Works

A pressurized fuel injection cleaning service involves:

  • disabling or plugging the fuel pump's pressurized fuel line
  • and connecting a canister, pressurized with compressed air, of a fuel-injector cleaning mixture to the car's fuel rail.

Compressed air at approximately 50 psi will mimic the pressure levels of a typical electronic fuel pump. If you use a 32-oz container of concentrated cleaner attached to the fuel rail, with the car running, it will take approximately 10 to 20 minutes to burn out, depending on whether it's a 4-, 6- or 8-cylinder engine.

The best injector cleaner that I have used for this pressure-cleaning process is ACDelco Upper Engine & Fuel Injector Cleaner. This product can only be used in a pressure cleaning service; it CANNOT be blended with fuel in the fuel tank. The cleaner is too strong and can damage rubber and plastic components in your fuel system.

What makes this cleaner so superior is that it not only cleans the injectors, but contains chemicals that decarbonize the combustion chamber by reacting with carbon deposits there. The carbon, I believe, reacts with the cleaner and flakes or burns off while the engine is running during the cleaning process. After cleaning, after the fuel lines have been re-connected and the engine started, I've noticed black smoke, presumably burned-off carbon, coming out of the exhaust pipe for a short while and then clearing up. Afterward, the idle smooths out, and the engine runs stronger with better response, acceleration, and fuel economy.

The six-minute video will provide you with visual step-by-step help for performing a pressurized fuel injection and upper cylinder cleaning service. The steps are also described lower down in the article.

Video of Toyota Pressurized Fuel Injection and Upper Cylinder Cleaning Service

Tools and Equipment Needed For Fuel System Cleaning

1. An air compressor that goes beyond 80 psi, with a storage container of (3) gallons container or more. When compressed air is being released to the injector cleaner container, it must be able to maintain 50 psi of pressure. A three (3) gallon container has worked fine for me.

2. A fuel injector cleaner canister. The canister should be made of metal to withstand compressed air pressure, contain a pressure gauge, and provide a compressed air connection fitting and a cleaner fluid output port fitting.

3. Hoses and fittings for the fuel injector cleaner canister. I purchased a fuel pressure test kit that came with various fittings and adapters to basically tie the cleaner canister into the car's fuel rail.

4. Fuel line fittings specific to the car. The connect and disconnect points for the fuel line in the engine compartment differ among auto manufacturers as well as among models. What I do is go to auto salvage yards, cut off the male and female connectors off a comparable junked car, and retrofit the connectors to the fuel line hose fitting.

Pressure Fuel System Cleaning Service: Step-By-Step Procedure

All the steps below are shown in the video above.

Disconnect the Fuel Line Going to the Fuel Injector Rail

Most imports have a plastic fastener with push-in clips that when depressed and the connector pulled will release the connection. There will be some pressurized fuel that will spray out. To relieve the pressure and avoid fuel spillage, remove the fuel pump fuse, start the car, and wait for the car to stall out due to fuel starvation. The slight fuel spillage doesn't bother me.

Finding Fuel Rail Supply and Fuel Pump Blockage Connectors

It's great if you can find these manufacturer-specific connectors to the fuel rail and the fuel pump. What I do is go to auto salvage yards, cut off the male and female connectors off a junked car, and retrofit the connectors to the fuel line hose fitting.

On the "plug" or blockage side, I jam in a Phillips-head screwdriver that closely matches the fuel line diameter of the female fuel connector's fuel line. I then screw on a hose clamp to prevent any fuel leakage.

On the fuel rail supply side, I connect a rubber fuel line hose to the male fuel connector. Then I connect the fuel line adapter to the other end of the rubber fuel line. I use hose clamps to avoid leakage.

Disconnect the Fuel Line Leading to the Fuel Rail

Find the location of the fuel line connector, press in the connection release tabs, and pull on the connector to release the connection.

Connect the Fuel Rail Adapter and the Fuel Blockage Adapter

1. Connect the makeshift fuel blockage adapter to the male fuel line connection.

2. Connect the makeshift fuel rail adapter to the female fuel line connector which leads to the fuel rail.

Connect the Fuel Injector Canister Hose to the Canister and the Fuel Rail Adapter

Ensure the connections are good. They should click-fit so that pulling on them will not cause them to release.

Fill the Fuel Injector Canister With Injector Cleaner Blended With Gasoline

I have been successfully using ACDelco Concentrated Fuel Injector Cleaner: four (4) ounces of cleaner for one (1) quart of gasoline. Most fuel injector cleaning canisters hold one quart or 32 oz. of fluid.

1. Spin off the top of the canister filler cap. Position the canister where it will not tilt.

2. Add 4 oz. of cleaner.

3. Add gasoline to blend. Fill to the top of the container, but leave room for the filler cap.

Connect the Air Pressure Line to the Fuel Injector Canister

1. Connect the compressed air hose to the fuel injector canister fitting. The air pressure value should be in the "closed" position.

2. Pressurize the system. Release air pressure from the air compressor to the fuel injector canister. The air pressure gauge should read between 50 to 60 psi.

3. Open the air pressure valve. The air pressure gauge should drop slightly.

4. Check for leaks.

Start the Engine and Let It Run Until the Fuel Runs Out

1. Start the engine and checks for any leaks. If leaks detected anywhere, immediately shut off the car, identify the leak's source, fix the problem and re-start the engine.

2. Let the engine run until there is no more cleaner remaining in the fuel injector canister.

3. Monitor the pressure and maintain approximately 50 psi.

Finishing the Job

1. Cut off the air supply to the fuel injector canister by removing the hose.

2. Set the fuel supply valve to the "off" position.

3. Disconnect the fuel line from both the fuel injector canister and the fuel rail adapter. There may be some fuel spillage in the process.

4. Disconnect both the fuel rail adapter and the fuel blockage adapter.

5. Re-connect the fuel lines.

6. Start the car and check for any leaks.

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.

© 2018 hardlymoving