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Toyota Tacoma: Problems & Solutions



  • kimm3kimm3 Posts: 2
    it means: air-fuel sensor heater circuit response malfunction...
    i have no idea what it means in regular english though...
  • kimm3kimm3 Posts: 2
    what does this mean? well, i know the definitions, but how do i fix it?
  • jtillerjtiller Posts: 1
    In response to your vibration problem, I own the same truck. Mine has the TRD, but not sure if that makes a difference (we do have different diffs, though). I noticed a similar problem, but in third gear. It is a cyclical, pulsating vibration of approximately 1hz (1 cycle each second). Although I don't work in the auto industry, I am an engineer, and am convinced it's a harmonics problem somewhere between the tranny and the transfer case.

    Long story short (I'll try), I took it in 7 or 8 times (5 were thoroughly documented repair/inspection attempts; others were for ride-alongs, etc.). They first told me at 5k some bs reason, like I had mud caked on my tires or something. Then, they inspected the drive shaft, transfer case, diff, etc., before replacing the tranny fluid. Told me to drive it home and come back for a new tranny if it persisted. It did, but they did not (replace it). I'm missing work, having to fill out paperwork each time for rental cars, etc., and each time I don't even make it home before I've duplicated it again. So, I play dumb and ask what they know about the Lemon Law. They give me some line about it not being in my best interest, and then I whip out the copy I printed off the web an hour earlier, and read it to them. They seemed to have taken me more seriously at that point, but that didn't solve the problem yet. They have their "team leader" tech ride along with me, and this time he removes the rear drive shaft before having me put it in 4H (making it front wheel drive) and drive around. To my premature relief, the VIBRATION IS GONE! Next is the drive shaft replacement, then the rear diff. Still a vibration. They stall me, ask me to wait a week for this reason or that, and don't want to say the words "transmission" or "transfer case," I think because they don't want to eat the cost if it doesn't fix it.

    I call or am called by several people, to no evail. They call me their buddy when we speak, but never really offer any real solution, other than me trading it in for "a great deal" on an 05 in which I'd have to cover the $5200 difference b/t what mine's worth and the rock-bottom price on a new one. They wouldn't even throw in a car wash for all my trouble, and they laugh at the idea of giving me a new truck or throwing in an accessory once it's potentially fixed.

    So, I researched as much as I could about the Lemon Law in my state, and then I sent an email to a law firm specializing in these cases. They call me back 4 minutes later and tell me I have a great case. Within a week, they have all my info and have agreed to represent me (that was this week) with no retainer, and waive all fees if we end up losing. Statute decrees that all lawyer fees are paid by Toyo if we win. Most likely scenario is a cash settlement, but a replacement is a possibility. The out of pocket I'll have to pay is about $300 total for an ASE mechanic to verify the problem exists, and some kind of court cost. That's it, regardless of the outcome of the case. 90% of cases settle almost immediately. Law firm states 99% success rate if it actually goes to court. The down side is the process may take a while, and I'm supposed to keep mileage to a minimum during the process. There's a lot more to it, but I'll stop here. I'd highly recommend searching for a firm called Krohn and Moss if you want to learn more about your rights and what you're realistically entitled to.

    So, in summary, I could no longer live with the problem, especially on a brand new truck, and decided my only real option left was to pursue legal action. The worst part about all this? I LOVE the truck otherwise. Sure, the gas mileage or effective hp could be a little better, but I've really grown attached to it. I just want the quality and flaw resolution I had in mind when I spent 23k on a new Toyota.
  • rmb4rmb4 Posts: 1
    I have a 1998 tacoma with the 3.4L V6. The fuse box is busted and I need a new one. I am trying to find one off another wreck that is still good, but the problem is I dont know which ones will work. Does it have to be one off a 3.4l or can it come off a 4cyl. I know there are at least two types, but dont know which will work for me. If you can help please let me know. Thanks
  • 0rbit1230rbit123 Posts: 5
    I have a 1999 Toyota Tacoma pre-runner x-cab V6 with 91000 miles auto. Within the last month I have had my engine cut out twice at a stop light (like stalling with a manual trans). And within the last week, upon startup, I have the engine stall out. The engine would cycle and then drop RPM's to zero and be out ... If I hold down the gas I can get it to stay ... and when it is warm it doesn't seem to have a problem -- any ideas on what to look at for the fix?
  • toyotakentoyotaken Posts: 897
    The first thing I would check is the fuel filter. It's relatively inexpensive and is often the cause of what you're describing.

    Hope this helps.

  • 0rbit1230rbit123 Posts: 5

    Is the fuel filter easy to access or do you need an auto shop to get to it? I have not picked up a tacoma service manual yet, so unsure on exact location.

    Thank you.
  • sgttoddsgttodd Posts: 4
    The fuel filter is located appr. underneath the drivers side seat in the undercarriage. It's relatively easy to change and to make sure it doesn't leak after changing put some white plumbers tape on the threads but make sure you use the tape that is meant for fuels. If you dont use it no biggy, but you might have more problems getting the connections leakproof if you dont. Another possible quick solution to your problem is to clean out the throttle body. That coupled with cleaning the MAF cured my rough idle, hesiotation problrm right up.
  • toyotakentoyotaken Posts: 897
    ditto the last posting. *ROFL* honestly, that was a perfect complement to my suggestion.

  • 0rbit1230rbit123 Posts: 5
    I would like to thank you both - I cleaned out my MAF and it seems to running a lot smoother. Just curious, to clean out the fuel filter - do I need to drain/empty my fuel tank or some how bleed the lines to ensure no fuel will come spraying out when I try and detach. If yes, what is a good process to do this. If you can't tell, I am just getting into working on my own vehicle and don't have a good grasp on the basics yet.

    Thanks again.
  • sgttoddsgttodd Posts: 4
    Glad to see that your truck is running better.
    You have to buy a new one fuel filter (about $20), you can't clean the old one out and reuse it. You don't have to drain your fuel tank when you change your fuel filter. Your best bet is to put down something like an oil drip pan and have rags ready so when the connections are loosened the gasoline will drip into the pan, and once the fuel filter is disconnected that will be full of fuel as well. Overall you can expect about a couple cups of gas to come out of the lines and filter.
    Easiest way to change the filter is to loosen the two nut couplings on each side of the filter. Then take out the screw in the butterfly connection (the metal object that goes around the actual filter to hold it in place. Then disconnect the fuel line brackets that hold the line in place on each side of the filter. This way you can munipulate the fuel lines to disconnect then from the fittings that connect it to the fuel filter. Then fully disconnect the fuel line from the filter and wrestle with them to get them out of the filter. They were a little tough for me so I would probably disconnect the fuel line from more than just one bracket on either side to give the fuel line more play, this should ease getting the lines in and out of the fuel filter. Make sure when putting in the new filter to pay attention to which way you put it in, it says on the actual filter which side is the intake side, the side that goes to the rear of the vehicle. Ther other hard time I had was getting the bolt back in the butterfly connection because it so short and the connection is under pressure. I advise that you use a vise grips to clamp the connection together to leave your hands free to deal with the getting the bolt in. Other than it's a piece of cake.
    Again I advise cleaning out your throttle body, it's easy and made the most difference for me when my truck was acting up.

    Good Luck and let me know how it goes.
  • riverrat1riverrat1 Posts: 12
    If I may add, on past cars/trucks, a pretty easy job, but I haven't changed one yet that I didn't have gas run down my arms. Gotta love that...
  • dougfirdougfir Posts: 1
    I have a 97 Tacomma 4x4 xtracab 2.7L 4-cyl with ~120kmiles. When the engine gets hot I have serious starting problems. No problem when cold. Basically, when starting after engine is hot, the engine just spins and does not ignite untill it has cooled off. It can take 30 minutes to get it going sometimes. Once its going, it runs great and has no problems at all. Its not the battery or starter. I replaced the plugs, plug wires, cap, rotor, battery terminals, and fuel filter. The check engine light has never come on and the computer was tested. I was told it could be a faulty "ignitor coil" under the distributor cap not sending a spark to the plugs. One time, when it was hot and wouldnt start, I pulled a wire off a plug and held it against the engine block while a friend tried starting the engine and there was indeed a spark. So it sounds like the ignitor coild is not the problem. I have asked about 10 mechanics and they say "it could be 20 different things, just leave it with us" (which sounds expensive) Also they cant test it unless is hot and malfunction, which is really intermittant. Any suggestions? Please help!
  • My 1996 Tacoma 4x4 had a slight rubbing sound coming from the left tire. It eventually got worse and now sound louder. It sounds as if something metal is rubbing but there is nothing visually that stands out when I look behind the tire. The problem is considerbly worse when I cut my wheel to the left. The harder I cut the worse the sound gets. Do any of you Toya experts know what this might be and how to address the problem? Any help would be appreciated!

  • seattle7seattle7 Posts: 4
    How do you clean out the throttle body. My 00 Tacoma pre-runner V6 is having serious problems with idling and hesitation. I cleaned out the MAF and still nothing, same problems just getting worse. I will changed the fuel filter and spark plugs on Mon., but wanted to also go ahead and clean out the throttle body while I'm at it. Hopefully this will fix my problems. Man, I thought when I bought my truck, I was getting a great quality truck, but this has not proven so.
  • seattle7seattle7 Posts: 4
    My 00' Tacoma pre-runner V6 / auto - is in serious trouble. At 83K miles it started idling rough and shake badly at 50MPH, now its getting worse, The engine is not shifting out of O/D and is really weak. Please anyone, give me some advise as to the next step.
  • seattle7seattle7 Posts: 4
    I am so mad. Cleaned the MAF, what next?
  • toytrucktoytruck Posts: 67
    >My 00 Tacoma pre-runner V6 is having serious problems with idling and hesitation.<>

    You said you changed the plugs. Make sure all of them are working. Pull one plug wire at a time.
  • gdwtch1969gdwtch1969 Posts: 15
    I have 2004 Tacoma V6 with 8000 miles on it.I am loosing coolant out of reservoir everyday.I have no leaks externally.Any idea what this might be?Also when the truck is at idle water is coming out of tailpipe.Is this normal for Tacoma's? Also heat is not blowing heat out of all vents.All heating an a/c controls are working just fine , just not blowing the air out like it used to.And yes my vents are open.Any help would be greatly appreciated.
  • toytrucktoytruck Posts: 67
    Stil under warranty--take to the dealer.
  • msibillemsibille Posts: 275
    If the MIL light is blinking, it's indicating a prblm code (DTC) is stored in the computer memory. If you know someone with an OBDII code reader (I have one, but am FAR from Seattle) get them to plug it in, read the code(s) and find the likely source of prblm. (I say likely, because the code will indicate the component(s) that are the likely source of the sensed error the computer is reading.) The code can be looked up in the reader's manual or at

    If you don't know someone with a reader, many autoparts shops have them and will (if you can wait til there's nobody waiting for help at the counter) plug it in to your vehicle and read you the codes.

    Alternatively, the OBDII readers can be had for about $100.
    The downside is that the systems are again in transition (initial systems went to OBDI, then OBDII in 1996 and newer, now moving to OBDII CAN), so a simple OBDII may not work with 2005 and newer vehicles (as I just found out with my 2005 Taco).

    Good luck
  • msibillemsibille Posts: 275
    Losing coolant is not normal. Nor having no heat.

    However, the water from the exhaust may be. We burn hydrocarbon fuels. Ideally, the carbon combines with oxygen to make CO2, the hydrogen with oxygen to make H2O (water). In a system at full operating temperature under moderate conditions, these exit as gases (carbon dioxide and water vapor- steam). However, when the exhaust system is cold, some of the water vapor will condense in the exhaust and may make it's way out the exhaust pipe before the system warms enough for it to evaporate again.

    In warm weather, with the system good and warmed up, you should not have liquid water coming from the exhaust.

    Lost coolant could be from a number of external leaks that may not be large enough to show on the garage floor. Telltale traces of a crusty residue may show up. It is not uncommon to find this at the ends of hoses that weep a little, or around the thermostat housing or water pump, or even at gaskets on the block, intake manifold, etc. Another possibility is leakage in the heater core (heat exchanger in the air handler of your heater). Maybe a small leak in the radiator (look for traces on the fins). And of course, you could have a leaking gasket or warped/cracked head or the like that would allow coolant to enter the engine, either the combustion chamber or the crankcase.

    Check you oil level. Do you see it RISING day to day instead of remaining stable or falling? If so, it's likely you have coolant leaking into the crankcase. This needs to be dealt with IMMEDIATELY. With the engine cold, remove the radiator cap. Start the engine, allow it to get to operating temperature. Do you see bubbles (like exhaust) coming out the radiator? (The point is to see if the water jacket is leaking into the combustion chambers. If so, on the power stroke, the higher pressure of the gasses in the cylinder will blow into the water jacket, eventually making their way to the radiator.)

    In any event, I would bring it to a dealer if still under warranty.
  • tracontracon Posts: 4
    A friend tells me it's possible to convert the standard rear on my 2005 2WD tacoma to a limited slip through either a transmission shop or the dealer for about $300 bucks. Is this possible? (4 cylinder, 5-spd)
    Any input would be appreciated!
  • vwoatechvwoatech Posts: 1
    The Honda Rigeline is not a Truck it is a SUT, trucks have a bed separated from the cab ,I will agree its a nice SUT but is pretty much a Honda Pilot. I hope you got white its a good color for that SUT.
  • keefykeefy Posts: 1
    I have a 1996 2WD base model Tacoma with a similar problem: If you turn off the engine when the temperature is above 80°F and the engine is at operating temperature, the engine will not start until it sits for 20-30 minutes. Otherwise, it works fine.
  • seattle7seattle7 Posts: 4
    Thanks, I do have several friends with OBD's. The codes were 301 303 304, all misfires in different pistons. I changed all the spark plugs, fuel filter and the maf sensor. I runs better but still have some problems when I hit the accellerator hard on the freeway. I am going to try and clean out the egr. Does anyone know how to do this. I think its an air problem, not a fuel problem. I ran the car with no air filter for a while. Forgot to put it in after checking it once and I think its dirty somewhere. Any suggestions anyone? Thanks for all your help everyone.
  • l5504l5504 Posts: 8
    Hey. I have a simaler problem. Under normal acelleraton it runs fine. But when I mash on it "Hesitation". This happens in Park, Neutral or Drive. The higher the RPMs the less it hesitates. It, as best as I can tell, kicks into passing gear just fine. The computer throws no codes. I'm thinking it might be the fuel pump. Check out mt other postings for more imfo. Good luck. l5504 (2000 Tacoma)
  • labman2labman2 Posts: 1
    I recently bought a 2005 Toyota Tacoma TRD V6 6 speed. I am also having problems with the transfer case. It started with making a grinding noise going into 4 high and would not go into 4 low at all. 4 low light would blink and buzzer would sound, but it would not engage. After four trips to the dealer--the actuator and the transfer case have been replaced. It still will not go into 4 low. Just wondering what you have found out with this similar problem. Have other owners of the 2005 Tacoma ran the truck in 4 low????Any problems???
  • drathardrathar Posts: 7
    I have a 2005 Tacoma TRD V6 6 speed. I have used 4 low several times. It is kinda touchy getting into 4 low, but I have not experienced any problems. I have noticed that it has to be engaged in 4 high before going to 4 low. Sounds like the dealer has some more work to do.
  • alrobalrob Posts: 2
    Hi. very glad to have found this group. Is there anything new regarding the tacoma front end recall? I read it was to start on july 15th but have not read anything since.
This discussion has been closed.