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Toyota 4Runner Maintenance and Repair



  • I see some questions about a certain "tapping" or ticking noise from the 3.0 v-6. I own the 93 sr5 4runner.Lately it has gotten noticibly when i pull up to macdonalds along a wall i can hear a ticking but not deep like a knock.I can't really pinpoint where it all comes from..the injectors have always ticked..but now i have come to the conclusion that i need to switch to synthetic oil..i think lubrication has alot to do with it. I also have had a 3 inch body lift and the little rubber mat that is in there around the steering shaft has been moved away and ever since then i have heard every little tick of the the engine running. it bothers me to hear any ticks, it has over 141,000 and still really puts out the power with 5/88 gears and 33's it tows and runs great except for those stupid ticks that drive me crazy.
  • Hi, I'm going to be buying my first vehicle in the next few months and right now I'm looking at 4Runners from around 1994. Basically, I'm hoping for a vehicle that will last me about 3-5 years. Can anyone tell me if there are any common/major issues with this vehicle or my expectations of it?


  • buying a 98 limited 2wd, 147,000 no leaks engine quiet. has vibration at 60 .looked at the u joints and front has thrown grease above it has fitting for lube. is it bad once thrown grease or could it be unbalanced tires. some grease on the rear u joint also. any ideas why

    no vibration at lower speeds. also drivng lights won't come on switch lights up, is there a fuse and where, will check bulbs asap. mainly need help with the drive shaft
  • Not sure about 94's but do a Google search for ALLDATA recalls for 1994 4Runner and other searches on 4Runner Headgasket problems.
  • I have a 2001 factory manual and the illustration that identifys where the block coolant drain plug is ....well... sucks. The radiator plug is obvious. Can someone point me in the general direction/side of block for the plug ?

  • If Park or Reverse won't lock the wheels get it checked !!!!!!!!!!!!!! pawl/gear problem
  • I have the 2004 repair manual for 4Runner and the diagram is probally not much differant. There are 3 drain plugs shown. You know about the first one. My diagram for the v6 shows that there is one which appears at the top of the engine, near or under the air intake. the other is located on the drivers side somewhere under or near the oil filter and either above or below the exhaust manifold. On the v8 engine, the plug location is near or under the air intake and the other plug is also on the drivers side somewhere near or under the cylinder head. I think the ones on top are meant for venting to allow the lower plug to drain efficiently. You may find it helpful to use a mirror to look for the side plug. I don't know if there were any big changes in engine design for the model year 2001 to 2004. So its possible that your plugs may be located differently.
  • When the temperature is 4 degrees F or lower my two yellow VSC lights come on on my '03 4Runner V6 Sport and my VSC is actually disabled (flooring it on my snow covered driveway quickly tells me this). If I turn the truck off and turn it right back on the lights go off and the VSC works. I have made appts. to have this checked out at the dealership, but they have to have the appts. a week in advance and the weather never cooperates (it's always too warm). It's not a huge deal, but I'd rather get it fixed while it's still under warranty and before it turns into something worse. Any ideas about what could be causing this? On those same cold days my rear wiper doesn't work correctly. It's delayed in working by about 30 seconds and makes a humming noise. You can also respond to too. Thanks
  • I have a problem that I can't seem to solve. At about 2m rpm's and about 48 mph in 3rd or 4th gear, when given the gas to go around someone, it seems like the cylinders or something makes a pounding sound in the engine.I use 89-91 octane gas. need to know how to set timing different. Was told that the timing is set by the computer. Need to override the computer and fix problem. Please help.
  • The vent cable on my '97 SR5 has become unattached in the defrost position, disallowing me to change the flow of air to the vents or to the floor.

    How big of a job is this to fix?

    Is this a Dealer only job?

    Thanks in advance for any and all help on this.
  • I just had this problem last week with the VSC lights. The dealership told me my catalytic converter needed replaced. In the mean time I did some checking myself, it turns out the gas cap solution that I had found on somebody's post may have fixed my problem. Does anybody with this problem fuel up with the engine running? Just wondering if that may have lead to the error.
    It seems like this VSC error code can have several possible causes.
  • I had this msg in general 4runner forum - thought I 'd try the audience here as well:
    My Problem:
    I had my valet key (grey) stolen from my 03 runner. I am looking for some advise as to next steps to take. I was told by dealer that I can have my master keys re-programmed to prevent valet key from starting car. However I believe that the valet key can still open the driver side door and trunk. Would I need to replace the lockset and thus have new keys mades?

    As I can't get into the dealer for a few days..I was told that the valet key only allows truck to be driven for limited this true? As I have no garage I am a bit worried, and hate to have to sleep with one eye on the vehicle at night.
    Any advise/experienced info on this would be greatly appreciated.
  • I've got the same problem on my 2004 6cyl 4Runner.
    However, my tires are the originals, not substitutes. So far they have replaced the receiving computer and one of the tire-pressure sensors. I'm on my way back to the dealer tomorrow for the fourth time on this problem, with rapidly diminishing patience. Did your repair--i.e., replacement of receiving computer and all five tire-pressure sensors--continue to work? That stupid little flashing indicator light drives me nuts. Otherwise I love this vehicle.
  • Can a toyota service dept. change things in the on board computer such as the timing?.
  • Simbah,

    Had the same problem before the best solution I did (i think ). Went to a locksmith and what they had done is they just reshaped all cylinder bolts (ignition,doors and trunks) and then they reshaped my existing keys to match. It's about a days work and it cost me $275. Forget about taking it to the dealer cause before I did the locksmith I asked around dealerships they want anywhere from $600 to $ 700.
    I was paranoid at first cause their charge was cheap so I lied and told them I lost valet and other keys except the one in the car. I originally lost valet key but kept spare. After it was all done my spare key wouldn't work, so I went back two weeks later and told them I found it and they reshaped that same key to match my car. It's been 3 months now and not a single problem.
    Hope this helps.
  • tangmantangman Posts: 127
    Some 4-Runner writeup say the 2004 has a water repellent windshield made of hydrophilic glass. I am having my windshield replaced and want to be certain that it is the water repellent version. My Toyota dealer's parts department never heard of such a thing. But, my broken windshield acts as if it has rainex on it and I never put it on.

    Does anyone know if all 2004 4-Runners have water repellent glass. How do I specific it, so my insurance company will replace it if it differs from the typical glass most glass shops use.

    You input to this would be very beneificial. Thanks in advance.


  • tomh12tomh12 Posts: 240
    I have an '04 sport V8 that I bought new in May of 04. Wonderful vehicle except for a couple of minor comfort features and an engine noise that began with the beginning of cold weather. First, I have the dealership change oil and filter every 3750 miles. I now have 39,000 miles. I have used Mobil 1, 05W30 since 7500 miles. The noise I am concerned about only happens on cold start after several hours of not running. It sounds just like a 2001 GMC 6.0L I owned...basically sounds like pistons hammering until the engine warms up, but only does it when the vehicle is in gear (under load) and NOT when sitting at idle, out of gear. This noise is very loud and anyone near the street when you are accelerating will notice it. It is definitely engine sourced, as the noise is same speed as engine, even if sitting still, in gear, with foot on brake while revving engine.
    Anyone else have this problem and how have you been able to resolve it?
    Your help is appreciated.
  • tomh12tomh12 Posts: 240
    I would like to know if anyone else with the 4.7L V8 is experiencing a cold engine "knock" or piston clatter for the first few minutes of driving. My dealership acts like they never heard of it and can not duplicate it until I leave it over night. I will do that soon, but would like to know if this is unique to my vehicle, or something others are experiencing.
    I have searched this topic and several others including and have not seen reference to this problem.
    If my 4.7L V8 is unique with this problem, I will push hard for warranty coverage extension or repair. If this is a common problem, it may well be like the GM 6.0L and just be a nuisance, with no long term consequences for engine life.

    Please, anyone with knowledge about this engine noise, give me some replys.
    Thank you,
  • I too have the 4.7 in my '04 SR5. When it is cold, 30 degrees or colder, the engine does make a slight knock at startup, just as the engine revs up for the first time. It goes away quickly, within 3-5 seconds. I have not noticed any such knock or ping when driving however, as it only occurs immediately after start-up when the engine is at a high idle. I'd be interested to hear what the dealerships take is on this. By the way, I only have 5000 miles on I would also be interested to know whether the noise got worse on yours as the mileage on the vehicle increased.
    Good luck!
  • tomh12tomh12 Posts: 240
    Thanks, Neumie2000 for the reply. I believe what you are experiencing is a slight "tick" that my engine also has immediately on start up. Like yours, on my engine that noise goes away in seconds. I am not concerned about that noise.
    My concern is a noise that is LOUD and can best be described as sounding like deisel engine clatter, but seems to be confined to one cylinder, if that is the source. It is not evident when the vehicle is in park or neutral whether revved, or at idle. If you allow the engine to run for several minutes...long enough for the heater to become will not make the noise when put in gear.
    I am open to the possibility that it could be tranny or transfer case related, as it only happens when you put the vehicle in gear, BUT it does not require movement of the vehicle and is in time with engine speed whether moving in forward or reverse, or sitting still. Once you start driving, the noise is loud while accelerating, then unnoticeable if coasting. The noise will stop completely within 1 mile of driving.
    This started with the arrival of cool nights when the temperature would get down in the 40's. I probably had about 25,000 miles by then. Even now, with 39,000 miles, when I travel in the South and temperature over night stays warm, there is no noise.
    Thanks again for your reply.
    I would still like feedback from anyone who has this problem or has an idea of what may be causing it.
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