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High Miles on a Toyota 4Runner



  • jere39jere39 Posts: 20
    My 97 SR5 has 185k miles, and is still a rattle-free pleasure to drive. I have the 5-speed manual, and will probably drive this as long as I can. About a year ago I wore out the tape player, and decided to replace the radio with something with a cd player. That worked out fine, but six months in the auto antenna stopped working the whole way in either direction. The motor still attempts to extend at on, and retract at off, but it fails to make it the whole way, then the motor just runs on and on attempting to complete the move. I assume the motor runs a nylon gear track up and down, and either some of the gears are stripped, or it the track is kinked or something. Anyway, I have been unable to find my way through the double fender wall to attempt to repair, and I sure don't want to pay a dealer to work on this. Anyone ever replace, or repair the auto antenna on a similar year vehicle?
  • duke15duke15 Posts: 161
    I've never done it myself, but I had a similiar problem with my 2002 4Runner. My wife ran it through a car wash with the antenna up and it broke some chord that attached the atenna to the antenna motor. On mine, you could hear the motor, but the antenna no longer moved and stayed stuck in about the half-way up position. The dealer fixed it and said it was a pretty common problem. He also said they had to take the fender off to get to it.
  • jere39jere39 Posts: 20
    Sounds like a rainy weekend in the garage job. I'd be happy to have it be a manual extend/retract, I just don't like the grinding motor.

    Thanks again,
  • We have a 4Runner with 382K - it has been well maintained. I wish ours had only 90K miles. We bought it from the original owner and everything works on it.
    Good luck with the next 300K miles.
    Jim Webb
  • I have a 94 4runner 3.0 with 153,000 miles on it and everytime when it is cooled down and started theres a loud exhaust sounding noise coming from the motor. I hit the gas and it gets louder and keeps going for about a minute or 2 unil it gets warmed up then the noise goes away and it runs quiet again... Ive never heard this noise before and not sure what it is.. i would appreciate any feedback. thanks!
  • duke15duke15 Posts: 161
    Thanks. I'm up to 103K on mine right now, and hope to keep it as my primary vehicle for at least a few more years. I still love it after 7 years and 100K+ miles. I did start experiencing a problem the past couple of days with some random hesitation while accelerating from cruising speeds to go a little faster. I'm bringing it to the shop on Wed and hopefully it won't be too bad.
  • My husband and I are nervous about purchasing this vehicle because of the high mileage. Body is in great shape with no rust and there are a lot of scratches which aren't a big deal, but another dealership that is interested in our business said that $15,000 is a lot of money for a car with high mileage and only a 60 day warranty. What do you think?
  • duke15duke15 Posts: 161
    Quick update in case anyne ever has a similiar problem: The hesitation I was having when driving got considerably worse within a week of starting. When I went to the dealer, they couldn't find anything mechanically wrong but said that I needed the carbon cleaned out of the engine (never done before) and that one of my plugs was bad. I thought they had changed the plugs at 88K miles when I had the 90K mile maintenance done, but they told me (this trip) that it is not part of the package. So I had them clean the carbon build up and replace the plug and my truck is running great again!
  • duke15duke15 Posts: 161
    We'd need more information about that specific 4Runner. Check out and for value estimates for your area.

    I have a 2002, and that was the last year of the old engine & body style, so I can't speak towards yours very well. I can tell you that my dad has a 2004 V8 4X4 sport edition, with 65K+ miles on it, and it runs great - never had a problem. The 4Runner tends to hold its resale value better than any other brand, and used ones seem expensive until you realize how long they last.

    At 104K miles, the only problem I've had was because I didn't replace the plugs when I should have (my fault, didn't realize they weren't part of the 90K mile maintenance). Once they replaced the plugs, it went back to being an awesome truck. Although in all fairness, I should admit that I am on my 2nd set of tires, and my 2nd set of front breaks, and I've had to get the oil changed every 5K miles. :) I've never had a more reliable possession, let alone truck. I've had to replace more parts on my bicycle!

  • xopherxopher Posts: 2
    am driving a 03 4runner with 150K miles. Other than some issues with the sunroof track and sulphur smell when new, it's been great. One question tho, the ride does seem to be a bit soft. Any suggestions on tightening up the suspension, new shocks / struts? other suggestions? am planning on going well over 200K with this one, a joy to drive.
  • My 4runner has the same problem, let me know if you find out the problem.
    Thank you
  • I recently bought a 2002 SR5, loaded, from the dealership where I work. Did my homework on it before I pulled the trigger. It had apprx. 78k on it. It now has over 84k and I have had zero issues with it. I did switch to fully synthetic oil, put in a Toyota air filter and put new rubber on it. Yokohama Geolander A/T S's. Really nice tire for the money (check ot Consumer Reports), imo. From the previous posts and other research, I am fully expecting to get at least 250-280k out of this truck with nothing but regular maintaince. The 90k mile service, including timing chain, was done before I bought it, so that is out of the way. If you get that done at a dealership, expect to pay between $1,200 and $1,400, but it is well worth it. If you want to save a considerable amount of $, go independent and have them preform the recommended services from your owners manual. I would absolutely recommend this model year to anyone looking for a quality, dependable and reliable on/off road vehicle. :)
  • Duke,

    340,000 miles and counting. Never left me stranded. End of story! I'd get in it today and drive across the country without hesitation. Also, I'd give it to my 2 college aged boys to drive anywhere too. That's how much I trust it.

  • I have a base 2000, 4 cylinder, AT with 236,000 miles and no problems. I bought it with 103K miles and have done no major work to it. I change the oil about every 4K,and the level doesn't move noticeably on the dipstick and is still a brown/gold color. It's not real powerful, but gas mileage is consistently in the low 20's. I will definitely get another 4 Runner. My son has a 1984 4WD 4Runner with 206K miles, and it is also running fine.
  • Actually 79,700 mi is not alot of miles at all for a Toyota 4 Runner. Thats actually a perfect amount of miles to buy it with. I'm looking at buying one that is a 2004 Toyota 4 Runner that has 146,000 miles. That's alot of miles! But the price for your 4 Runner is perfect for a 05 with 80k miles! I would buy it, if I could find it! Take it to your local mechanic, or a firestone to have a vehicle inspection completed before you buy it. It's only 19.99 from firestone. Good Luck!
  • I'm looking at buying an '02 4Runner with 135K, great condition, but a little worried about the high mileage. Is $14,000 a good price for this car? I am going to test drive it tomorrow and was wondering if anyone has good advice on what questions to ask the dealer.
  • $14K is WAY to much money for a 2002 4Runner with that many miles. look around on autotrader,com and your local Craigslist to see what 4Runner's are selling for - but no matter how nice a shape that one is in it is overpriced by $6-7K.
  • the most common problems with these are the head gaskets blowing. that was one of the major problems. i know 5-6 years ago they replaced the i believe either the sway bar or torsion under a recall. the head gaskets were the main problem
  • to replace the antenna you screw off the silver nut that screws around the hole where the antenna sits turn the radio on and when the antenna motor stops pull the entire antenna out. it uses a gear strip with teeth to retract back down. once you have the new antenna mast, fish it down the hole and turn the radio off and it should retract back down. i have done this on my 95 runner and i learned the hard way after looking at this website. the part you can find on ebay or buy it from the dealer which is more expensive. i believe on ebay when you get the part depending on who you get it from, it should come with instructions on how to remove and install the antenna
  • chuck1chuck1 Posts: 1,405
    You didn't mention what type of suspension you have. If you have the interlinked X-REAS - to replace the system is $3,000.00 as it's dealer option only.

    You can take off the X-REAS and use the "not for X-REAS option" on any website. If you check tirerack, they have some options.

    Other sites are Do a search. There are Bilsteins, KYB, Monroe, OME, etc. For my '05, I have purchase slightly used shocks and springs from someone with an FJ Cruiser, and plan to take offf the X-Reas and install that system when the time comes. You can find used FJ Cruiser suspension very cheaply on those forums. Those guys take it right off and install new systems and lifts, hence they sell the old parts cheap! I paid $80.00 for EVERYTHING!

    It depends if you use offroad or onroad and what type of ride you want.
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