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Toyota Tacoma 2004 and Earlier Frame Problem



  • dennisnydennisny Posts: 12
    When my mechanic told me I had perforation, I called Toyota and Toyota set up an appointment with a dealer of my choice. That happened to my 1999 Tacoma, in September of 2011. Toyota bought my truck back, and just a few weeks ago I received the letter stating that the warranty extension was in place until March 2012 (I no longer have the letter). If you know that you have rust perforation, you may want to try calling Toyota before going to a dealer. It worked for me. Remember this is not a recall. Good Luck.
  • jlindbergjlindberg Posts: 1
    edited March 2012
    Hi folks. Hoping you may be able to provide some helpful info. I own a 2001 Toyota Tacoma with 200,000 miles on it (purchased in Minnesota). I recently moved to Germany for the US Army and, when faced with German vehicle inspection, found that the frame of my truck is rusted to the point that you can poke holes in it. I know that there was a recall notice on this and I've read some of the experiences other folks have had. I hadn't been aware of the recall (I move a lot because of my job and never found out about it). Well, I called Toyota this week and complained about the frame issue. I was told that my vehicle is not covered because I live in Germany now (on a US Army base), even though the car was purchased in the US and resided there for eleven years. I was also told that my truck wasn't covered because I never elected for "rust protection" spray. Does this sound right, or am I getting screwed? If it weren't for the frame issue, the truck is in great shape and could drive another 100,000 miles. I'm not sure what the next step is.

    Thanks for any guidance,
  • I agree, talk to Toyota Corporate directly before you try dealing with the dealership. The dealership is just the middle-man for the frame test and loaner car if you are eligible.
  • drinkthisdrinkthis Posts: 3
    edited March 2012
    The dealers have been asked by Toyota corporate to cooperate with the process but can be misinformed and do not control this process.

    To get info have your vin handy and call the
    Toyota Customer Care 1-888-270-9371
    Mon - Fri 5 am to 6 pm and Sat. 7 am to 4 pm PT.

    To open a case call the
    Toyota Customer experience 1-800-331-4331
    They will assign a case number and an agent from their Truck Team will call back with instructions.

    I've noticed that Toyota has been reissuing frame inspection deadlines varying by state. Toyota customer care has confirmed that the latest deadline for all the affected states is 12/31/12 (even though there were previous deadline letters for 3/31/10 and 12/31/11 for various states). This deadline issue affects vehicles registered only in the following states: CT, DE, IL, IN, KY, MA, MD, ME, Ml, MN, NH, NJ, NY, OH, PA, RI, VA, VT, WI, WV and WashDC.

    Also i was told that if you buy a used vehicle to call one of the numbers above to register yourself in the database as the new owner. Also if you are the 2nd owner the warranty transfers without issue but if you are the 3rd owner or above that it requires a phone call. I think this has to do with making sure the title is clean.
  • aj42187aj42187 Posts: 1
    they opted to replace frame for the cost of $12,000?? Did they ask you how much your looking for a buy out?
  • don_ncdon_nc Posts: 9
    Thinking of getting a 03/04 Tacoma in North Carolina (Raleigh to Charlotte more specifically) and curious how severe the rust issue is in this region. Is it only in Northern states that get frequent road salting during winter months ?

  • rustcityrustcity Posts: 4
    I was told I’m out of luck because they put a deadline on the recall 12/31/11. I was never notified!
  • rustcityrustcity Posts: 4
    I was told they had a deadline on the call back 12/31/11 and I was [non-permissible content removed] out of luck....and there is nothing that they can do. I have a 2003 Tacoma and was never notified. Consider yourself lucky. What state do you live in? I’m in RI
  • rustcityrustcity Posts: 4
    I have a 2003 and took it in for inspection and exhausted hanging.....Found rust everywhere. spare tire gone, hole in gas tank, hole in the bed, gas tank support arm almost completely gone on one side and frame rust every where. I was told of the same deadline and then told it didn’t matter because mine was not recalled because I DID have the under-coating spray! So I’m also [non-permissible content removed] out of luck! I call but can’t talk to a person.....what number are you calling?
  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJPosts: 3,516
    Easy on the language, please...

    kcram - Pickups/Wagons/Vans+Minivans Host
  • danabradburydanabradbury Posts: 1
    edited May 2012
    Drinkthis, is there anyway to confirm the extension till 12/31/12? Toyota Customer Experience is telling me the extension just expired 2 days ago, 04/30/2012. I am in Indiana.

  • greg128greg128 Posts: 418
    I did a search on which is the site where vehicle complaints are compiled to the NHTSA. I searched "Frame Rust". In the first 10 pages of search results I found the breakdown of complaints by manufacturer:

    GM - 2
    Isuzu - 5
    Honda - 9
    Kia - 1
    Subaru - 1
    Ford - 9
    Nissan - 10
    Toyota - 63

    Fully over 60% of the complaints were for Toyota products. Over 3 million Tacomas and Tundras were sold in the last 12 Years. Toyota has been dealing with this problem by buying back and destroying / or re-framing these trucks to the tune of approx $13,000 per vehicle.
    3 million times $13,000 equals $39 billion. Current Toyota yearly profit is approx $5 billion, so that their liability for these defective frames is equal to about 8 years of profit. I predict their policy of taking responsibility for these rusty trucks will end within a year or two. If I owned their stock I would sell it soon.
  • terceltomterceltom Allentown, PSPosts: 1,024
    Your calculations are all wrong. The buybacks and reframing only applied to Tacomas and Tundras sold in 20 cold weather states, not all 3 million trucks sold in ALL 50 states in the past twelve years.
  • dsacericdsaceric Posts: 1
    We recently brought our '02 Tacoma in to a dealership to have a gas line replaced and the dealer told us our truck may qualify for a frame replacement. He has worked for the last week with Toyota and we were told last night that they will be replacing the frame for us. We live in central North Carolina. There is hope.
  • rcummelinrcummelin Posts: 184
    Read this thread literally a couple of hours before closing the deal on a used 1997 Tacoma LX 4x4. When I got to the dealer I had them put the truck up on a rack so I could check the frame. Luckily, all seems fine & we bought it.

    There was only one spot about 2" diameter where rust had bubbled up, so I chipped that away with the hammer (it was a claw hammer) and found that it wasn't deep or serious. Banged away at every frame surface I was able to get to. Made a heck of a noise.

    Luckily, this truck has spent most of its life in VERY dry Western Colorado.
  • eallmaneallman Posts: 16
    I met a guy over the weekend who worked as a mechanic for Toyota. He claimed to have worked in a garage that did frame-swaps and/or restorations. Some of his stories about the "dirty" policies of Toyota were a bit alarming. One in particular, of a manager who bought a used Taco with rust off a guy right when the warranty notice went out to the dealerships. The owner later got the warranty letter and sued to get his truck back. Court records were able to document when the manager had gotten the letter and was made aware of the 150% KBB buyout plan. Seems the manager profited over $10,000 USD on the sale. The manager was not fired but rather "verbally reprimanded" for the deal.

    Good people get screwed. Bad people get rewarded.
  • rcummelinrcummelin Posts: 184
    "Good people get screwed. Bad people get rewarded."

    Wow, that statement is so totally TRUE, especially when it comes to car deals. I'm fully convinced that there are NO truly honest car dealers out there. Some are better than others, but all of them have only ONE goal: To separate you from your money. The manufacturers are just as tainted too.

    This dealer we bought the Tacoma from is just a local, independent pickup and trailer dealer, yet the owner had a massive room in the back of the dealership that was full of vintage Mopar muscle cars and dragsters. That stuff doesn't come cheap, so it seems that at least his business is VERY lucrative.
  • terceltomterceltom Allentown, PSPosts: 1,024
    edited May 2012
    "Good people get screwed. Bad people get rewarded."

    I certainly don't agree with that overall statement. You get out of car shopping what you put into it. If you do your research and price your vehicle before even going to a dealer you go in as an educated buyer and won't get screwed. I bought three of my new Toyotas basically over the internet and my son has bought used cars this way also. I priced my cars first, down to every little detail of every option I want and then allow an amount for dealers profit before ever going in to the dealer. The dealers that sold me my cars couldn't possibly screw me because I knew what I wanted and knew exactly what I wanted to pay and how much I wanted to allow him to make on my purchase. You gotta remember, this is the dealers job to sell and make money off of you, but you have to do your own homework first to prevent being "screwed" and taken advantage of. Going to a reputable, well known dealer in the first place will go a long way in preventing being taken advantage of also.
  • framerot1framerot1 Posts: 7
    Toyota is trying to screw me out of the recall on my 01 Tacoma. I see other Tacoma owners that have had the recall ( Re-Frame) done in 2012. If you had your Tacoma's frame replaced in 2012 please email me. [email protected] I would like to hear dates of when frame was inspected and replaced.
    My truck has been inspected and failed but Toyota is trying to say the recall ended on 12/11. That is not true. Thanks for any info. pete
  • framerot1framerot1 Posts: 7
    edited May 2012
    Saw your post and would like to know when you had your truck looked at for the first time by toyota re: frame rot. They never sent me mail till late 2011. Frame was inspected by Toyota in April 2012 and failed. Now they are trying to say that the recall ended on 12/11. I see others that have had their frames replaced in 2012. pete
  • framerot1framerot1 Posts: 7
    DON'T BUY A TOYOTA! YOU WILL REGRET IT! All Shiney on the outside.....Rusted to the core! Toyota will not stand behind their product. Chevrolet makes a better vehicle and will stand behind its product.
  • framerot1framerot1 Posts: 7
    Your problem will be "all conditions of warranty" They will find away out. fine print. good luick.
  • dyankedyanke Posts: 9
    edited June 2012
    I am in the process of the frame replacement right now, 2001 dbl cab with around 225K, and just went in to have it checked last week. I did not get the spraying and just took my truck in a week and a half ago and am getting the full replacement and free loaner to boot. The spraying appears to be a stop gap measurement. The process has completely painless, albeit withdrawals waiting to get my Taco back, and they are anxious to help.

    The deadline for replacement most definitely has not expired, at least for the 01-04's.

    Rather than throw away thousands of dollars because of a obviously misinformed dealer, possibly contact Mark, the service manager at my dealership (815) 748-7300. Since they provide a loaner at their cost, it might be worth the drive to Illinois for an $11,000 + free replacement.
  • framerot1framerot1 Posts: 7
    edited June 2012
    Massachusetts 2001 Tacoma 4X4 SR5........ I first heard of frame problems in late 2011 and called Toyota Cust Care (TCC) I was instructed by them using my address in MA and my VIN to schedule an appt. at dealership for frame inspection.
    April 13th 2012 the truck was inspected at LIA TOYOTA in Wilbraham,MA. The trucks frame failed. The mechanic painted the frame (white) and stuck a label in area painted. Scott the service manager said they would order frame and would call when the truck was to have frame replaced. I was asked to buy new U-bolts for my trucks existing liftkit as they would probably cut the existing off. I spent $50.00 on new U-bolts. They also told me that they could do other repairs for reduced cost as the truck is disassembled. I purchased new front shocks for $250.00 plus shipping. My truck has numerous custom attachments bumper guards, brush guards, Traction bars, Etc that they asked/suggested I remove to assist in frame work and for my own peace of mind. I Did at a total time of over 6 hours.
    Two weeks later I called for update and was told I would need to bring truck back to LIA TOYOTA to have a Truck Program Rep (Justin) reinspect. I scheduled appoint/Time to return. I waited over two hours in LIA TOYOTA's waiting room for Rep to arrive. After it was re-inspected I was told to standby and wait to hear back. Never called me back. Still have not.
    I contacted TCC and was given case manager Kevin Spillane. I was told he would look into matter and get back to me within 24hrs. He did not return call. A week later I contacted TCC and was told that Toyota was sorry that they had not got back to me. I was told that Toyota had ended its frame program in MA and I was out of luck.
    Toyota lied to me. Toyota had me spend money ($300.00) Toyota had me remove parts and prepare truck for re-framing.
    If the program had ended in Massachusetts why did TCC send me to the dealer. They used my name/address/VIN so they knew what state I was in.
    Why did the Service Manager Scott tell me they were ordering me a frame and had me spend my time and money for nothing?
    If I called TCC and was told from the Get-Go that I had missed a deadline, I would have been upset but I would not have wasted my time and money for nothing.
    Tacoma frames are still being replaced in other Cold Climate States and I think Toyota should except that they screwed up and replace this frame without hesitation or litagation. They have wasted to much of my time and money to follow up with legal action, but it looks like thats where this is headed.
    I'm not alone with this problem. There are hundreds of Tacoma owners that don't even know their frames are unsafe., and others like myself that were not notified as a second/third party owner
    My truck looks like new inside and out....but you can't drive it. sad
  • terceltomterceltom Allentown, PSPosts: 1,024
    Something must be askew with your case; your the first one that I ever heard of that any kind of problem with the frame issue with their Tacoma.
  • dyankedyanke Posts: 9
    I agree, there is more to this story.
  • duck20duck20 Posts: 2
    I just purchased my 2002 Tacoma one month ago as a second truck because I missed my old 2002 Tacoma best truck ever had . My new one has 124,000 miles very clean but has a lot of rust on frame rails behind front bumper area rust just flakes off curious where the tacomas rust from that have the recal it usually in one spot or sporadic places ?
    & is their any markings on the frame that have dates or serial # that let you know you got one of the bad ones.
    Also if mine is a replacement list truck do they do it for 2nd owners or only original owners?

    Thank you.
  • dyankedyanke Posts: 9
    Yes, second owners are covered. You have to take your VIN and call your local dealer. The rust generally occurs, but is not limited to, in the areas near where the leaf springs attach.
  • acorn_80acorn_80 Posts: 1
    I have been going round and round with TCC, they are telling me hat the program ended March 2011. My 2001 will not pass inspection, I had it inspected in 2009 and got the "Everything is OK from the dealership", received a mailig in 2010 and thought that I had already satified this recall in 2009. They are now telling me that by not going back in 2010, that I have forfieted my 15 year warranty. Not a happy camper right now.
  • gtalongtalon Posts: 1
    edited June 2012
    I also have a 2001 Tacoma dbl. cab with a rusty frame and went to my local dealer and was told that they would not help....So i called Mark at and he took my vin # and said he wound look in to the matter. He called back and said that that vin# did come back as a 2001 model but it said that the truck was built in 2000 and may fall into the "Buy back program"....It seem that my local dealer will not help....and I hope I will not have to drive all the ways to Illinois from Maine to get the problem taken care of... I am waiting to hear back from Mark, and Toyota Customer Care Center :confuse:
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