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If you had coolant getting into a cylinder, you would not have the black soot (carbon) around the perimeter. Having the black soot is a good sign. Clean metal would indicate it being constantly steam cleaned from vaporized coolant. Your first picture is very blurry, not sure if it has soot or is steam cleaned.

I think you may be onto something concerning the minor debris (loose carbon deposits?) that is seen in some pictures. Your engine treatment may have caused it which seems harmless.

One thing I question are the sparks plugs you installed. I have learned over the years to use only direct replacements as specified in the owner's manual. My sister's Toyota Camry had the SES (Service Engine Soon) light on before and also after a tune-up because her certified mechanic installed an "equivalent" set of spark plugs. She sold the car to my son soon thereafter. Helping my son with the problem, I installed OEM spec'd plugs which cleared the SES light. I cannot take credit for the diagnosis. My next door neighbor is a mechanic and he gave me that tip.

That was many years ago. Ever since then, I always follow the owner's manual for which spark plug to install because otherwise it can be a hit or miss.
 

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Discussion Starter #24
If you had coolant getting into a cylinder, you would not have the black soot around the perimeter. The black soot is a good thing. Clean metal would indicate it being constantly steam cleaned from vaporized coolant. Your first picture is very blurry, not sure if it has soot or is steam cleaned.

I think you may be onto something concerning the minor debris that is seen in some pictures. Your engine treatment may have caused it which seems harmless.

One thing I question are the sparks plugs you installed. I have learned over the years to use only direct replacements. My sister's Toyota Camry had the SES light on because her certified mechanic installed an "equivalent" set of spark plugs. Soon after she sold the car to my son. I installed OEM spec'd plugs soon after her tune-up which solved the problem. I cannot take credit for the diagnosis. My next door neighbor is a mechanic and he gave me that tip.
And here I thought it was a good idea to buy better plugs.
 

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Eliminate one of the easily identified variables you know to be incorrect. Install a set of the proper plugs for the LNF and go from there.
 

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And here I thought it was a good idea to buy better plugs.
Operable word being "better". Ypu have to use the correct plug for the engine and application.
 

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I’ve found that doing business with companies like PAW, and DDM works, establishing a relationship with them has opened the door to ask questions and advice. I’ve found their recommendations informative and helpful. Admittedly I have asked questions thinking I already knew the answer only to find out I was mistaken. While I could have purchased what they recommended elsewhere sometimes for a little less than their price, the service and guidance was priceless.
Ivy/Dave at DDM and Dave at PAW are excellent resources for information and a source of quality parts.
Just my 2 cents.....
 

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Hey squil....a few things that most of us have figured out here. Plugs.... Always use the OE recommended plug in the LNF motor. It doesn't like gimmicky or different plugs, unless you have a larger turbo and can prove you have spark blowout. Several have tried gimmicky plugs and gotten CELs and fixed it by putting the old plugs back in. Part two...you have a turbo and any type of stop leak is (at least I believe it is from my dealership experience) horrific in a turbo car. Its almost as bad as putting sand in your coolant for a turbo car. Not sure if you have a turbo car or not... Part 3, the rear cylinder, from what I've seen, always runs a bit hotter then the other 3. If that one plug came from #4, then that would be my thoughts. Good luck at figuring it out!
 
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Discussion Starter #30 (Edited)
Only one of four plugs have evidence of overheating. I suspect possible damage.
Operable word being "better". Ypu have to use the correct plug for the engine and application.
Hey squil....a few things that most of us have figured out here. Plugs.... Always use the OE recommended plug in the LNF motor. It doesn't like gimmicky or different plugs, unless you have a larger turbo and can prove you have spark blowout. Several have tried gimmicky plugs and gotten CELs and fixed it by putting the old plugs back in. Part two...you have a turbo and any type of stop leak is (at least I believe it is from my dealership experience) horrific in a turbo car. Its almost as bad as putting sand in your coolant for a turbo car. Not sure if you have a turbo car or not... Part 3, the rear cylinder, from what I've seen, always runs a bit hotter then the other 3. If that one plug came from #4, then that would be my thoughts. Good luck at figuring it out!
Lots of problem sourcing/solving today. My friend with a good deal more car knowledge than I came over.

Bought an endoscope. No damage on any cylinders, just light carbon build up.

The coolant smell was coming from a really hard to see small leak from the radiator return hose. Only came out as the engine began cooling, which would then start burning.

There is oil in the coolant. It's a miniscule amount. I'm not worrying about it.

We rechecked all of the gaps on the plugs. All 3 clean ones were at .35. The plug with residue on it was at .37. I regapped it to .35. We are also suspecting one of the coil packs might be going bad, so we rotated the plugs and coil packs, where I'll recheck them in a few hundred miles to see if the plug under that coil pack gets dirty. I moved a "clean" spark plug to the cylinder with the "dirty" plug.
 
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