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So yesterday I was trying to do the timing cover gasket job and when I finally got to replacing it, I found this absurdity. No, it's not just them being layed on the floor differently, the new gasket was outright made incorrectly. You're probably wondering what company would make such a stupid mistake, and in this case it's not just one, but two, possibly more! The gasket (on the right) in the picture was made by Mahle, but I just so happened to have also had the same set from Fel-Pro, who lo and behold, MADE THE SAME MISTAKE! This raises concerns for me, that if two of the supposed leaders of the industry mess this up, surely everybody is following suit.

I'm just making this post to let other 2ZZ owners know to watch out for poor aftermarket practices, this is like the 4th or 5th time I've been burned on an aftermarket part for this car, so I'm going to graviate towards OEM parts as much as possible. Other gaskets/parts of note that got messed up include: Thermostat Gasket, Valve Cover Gasket, Heater Hoses, Radiator Hoses, and Brake Cables. When in doubt, just buy OEM, it's more expensive, but you'll be saving in the long run.
 

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Both sets were ordered off Rockauto, they had to issue me a refund for them because they're unusable. It just seems as though a lot of aftermarket companes simply fail to understand our cars.
 

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My question is why the hell would you try to go cheap on a gasket that literally takes hours just to beable to get to? This kind of stuff if you dont go OEM on will bite you hard.

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Neither Mahle nor Fel-Pro are usually considered cheap gaskets, and in my experience they tend to at least meet OEM specs. The Toyota gasket also isn't all that good, so I was hoping in this case that I would be upgrading. I'm using the OEM Toyota gasket now because it's pretty much the only option.
 

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The only thing gauranteed to meet oem... is oem... thats like taking a bicycle chain and putting it as ur timming chain. "Well its a chain, right?" ... some things u can cheap out on... a gasket i wouldnt reccomend unless u like spending days with ur engine down redoing what you just replaced. My .02$ important stuff oem is the only way to go.

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Discussion Starter #7
Most stuff I go OEM for, but there are many times where the aftermarket does a good enough, if not better job. Mahle and Fel-Pro make good gaskets, often they perform better than OEM due to better materials/ molding. This issue is the first I've had with either brand, but the fact that both had it means that they're getting the gasket from the same place. I've used them for years on many different cars and never had an issue with them.

I've seen my fair share of shitty aftermarket junk, but I've also seen my fair share of OEM junk.
 

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Sure, im not talking about engine upgrades or anything im talking about gaskets, but is it worth saving 5$ to potentially have to redo a 5hour job?

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Both sets were ordered off Rockauto, they had to issue me a refund for them because they're unusable. It just seems as though a lot of aftermarket companes simply fail to understand our cars.
just buy the OEM one and move on. The gasket is a very complex shape and if you compare the OEM gasket to the pictures on rockauto, what you received is the same as what is in the pictures, just the OEM gasket is completely different. I'm not sure if that is intended for a 1zz, a different car altogether, or what but they all look like that on rockauto so.... who knows.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
just buy the OEM one and move on. The gasket is a very complex shape and if you compare the OEM gasket to the pictures on rockauto, what you received is the same as what is in the pictures, just the OEM gasket is completely different. I'm not sure if that is intended for a 1zz, a different car altogether, or what but they all look like that on rockauto so.... who knows.
That's the thing, I checked them again and both sets stated they were for the GT-S, which admittedly isn't the same as saying it's for a 2ZZ. Thing is, the gaskets I got wouldn't have been for a 1ZZ either, it's just entirely wrong. The 1ZZ and 2ZZ only really significantly differ at the heads.

I hear you guys, I usually always go for OEM. I had gotten these sets a while before I started the job because I'm doing the Timing Cover alongside the clutch. This mistake wasn't obvious until I had the old part out for comparison. This incident, along with the shitty brake cables I got has me pretty much fully convinced on going only OEM unless it's not an important part. Otherwise, I'm only using proven upgrades.
 

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Iv been working on cars for around 12 years for myself and others. I cannot count the number of times my ass has been bit by getting the wrong "correct" parts... to the point its simply impossible to get a car back on the road because they were cheap.

This lesson can never come too soon. And yes proven upgrades or use oem. Ull have little to no suprises that way

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Thanks for the info.
toyota do not make gaskets, they buy from gasket suppliers. In fact car companies go for the $ so sometimes aftermarket is actually superior.
Fwiw I have never bought an oem gasket ever. I did not use oem when I rebuilt the top half of my GTS race engine and its just fine. Sure I have made bad choices but I have also just had an oem supplier maf for my miata go bad after 9 months. The cheap amazon one is working just fine. $150 for oem lasting 9 months. $21 for amazon supplied.
i appreciate the heads up and I too have had bad stuff from rockauto just like any supplier, nothing is perfect.
 

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I've actually never had issues with Felpro gaskets. I'm wondering if the valve cover was changed between different versions of the 2zz but these companies failed to understand that.

I have a few brands I trust and only use parts from them. If they don't make parts for the car, then OEM it is. For example, Felpro for gaskets, KYB/Moog for suspension parts, Timkin or National for bearings. Then I usually buy OEM parts but not from the dealer (Denso, Aisin, Koyo, etc.)

Here's my stance on OEM parts. If it's a critical engine component or brakes (most aftermarket brakes have a horrible initial bite) OEM only. If you can afford it, OEM. OEM parts already lasted 15 years, it's worth the price hike for another 15.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I've actually never had issues with Felpro gaskets. I'm wondering if the valve cover was changed between different versions of the 2zz but these companies failed to understand that.

I have a few brands I trust and only use parts from them. If they don't make parts for the car, then OEM it is. For example, Felpro for gaskets, KYB/Moog for suspension parts, Timkin or National for bearings. Then I usually buy OEM parts but not from the dealer (Denso, Aisin, Koyo, etc.)

Here's my stance on OEM parts. If it's a critical engine component or brakes (most aftermarket brakes have a horrible initial bite) OEM only. If you can afford it, OEM. OEM parts already lasted 15 years, it's worth the price hike for another 15.

I can assure you that the timing cover gasket is the same for all 2ZZ engines. Whoever Fel-Pro and Mahle source their gaskets from must have either had a bad mold, or a defective batch. When I reviewed the gaskets I was sent I notice that the length is correct, and when you look at the defective gasket, you can kind see where it was supposed to be correct. I have no idea how they could have amassed such a blunder.

Ironically both Fel-Pro and Mahle are trusted brands in my eyes, but this experience among others makes me doubt their current quality. There's also the factor that parts for our cars seem to be difficult to make properly, so for a lot of stuff you have to go OEM because nobody can even meet the standard. My Celica has been the only car that has been this difficult to source proper parts for.
 

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Manuals say 8 hours, a good mechanic took 9.5 hours to replace the timing chain cover gasket on my 2ZZ. The oil leak was fixed.

He had to jiggle the engine up and down to clear the pulley bolts from the side of the engine bay.
 
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