24th Nov 2009, 12:56

I had my 95 4Runner head gasket replaced at 90,000 miles back in 2003. I paid $2300 at a mechanic shop.

I replaced it a second time just last month at 202,000 miles. I paid $900 to a Toyota mechanic who wanted to make extra cash off the clock.

Runs pretty good again. Not sure if I would take it up to the snow anymore. Driving uphill causes the engine to work hard, which leads to overheating, which leads to these problems.

Call me complacent, I will say that $900 is better that new/used car payments.

11th Dec 2009, 19:27

Add me to the list! 150,000 no warning at all. 95 4runner. Gettin heads redone now cuz vehicle is mint. Thanks Toyota.

13th Dec 2009, 15:17

Hello All,

I just joined the 1995 4 Runner sucker club to the tune of $1200. I had thought it was a good deal, even knowing it had the blown head gasket as the car is in fantastic condition otherwise. Of course the VIN is out of range for the recall. Little did I know that this is a major problem, and hence, a dilemma for owners everywhere.

Being a loyal Toyota owner for years, I have owned a 1991 4runner, which was sold without a problem ever developing, and now own 2 Tacomas and a Landcruiser (bought off ebay), all 95 to 97. They have all been very reliable and great to drive.

I just found this site and wonder what to do with the 4runner now. Repair or rebuild the apparently faulty 3.0 engine, or consider a 3.4 Toyota or even a Chevy conversion??

20th Dec 2009, 11:25

Update on my last post: After getting a few estimates for repair ranging from $1200. to $3200. I searched Craig's List and found a dream mechanic who repaired the gaskets, checked everything else and gave the car a clean "bill of health" plus guaranteed his work, all for $800. All the "real" mechanics wanted to replace half the parts on the car in order to be able to guarantee their work, parts that were not at all needing to be replaced.

I used to perform my own car repairs, and having work done is new to me. I quickly discovered what most people already know, the repair industry is an organized fraud and ripoff, and most are in cahoots with each other to perpetuate the fleecing of the public, there oughta be a law, but for now do shop around and take with a grain of salt what most mechanics tell you, their pockets are lined with lies.

29th Dec 2009, 19:12

94 4runner. 160k miles.

Head gasket is about blown. Water in oil and idling is getting rough with some loss of power. It's my only car and I just moved to this town and don't know anyone, so I'm pretty much screwed as far as getting to work while the repair is done. And it'll probably cost about a month of salary too. 160 hours of my time to fix this damn problem.

Unfortunately the gasket was replaced back when the recall was issued. Other things that have gone wrong are a CV boot cracked (replaced the axle here even though it wasn't necessary), AC stopped working after the compressor failed, rear window goes down but not up with the switch in the car, and it's been leaking from the valve cover gasket. The car was driven hard all its life, so I expected this many failures, BUT not the head gasket.

2nd Jan 2010, 15:28

I just found this site today and really wish that I had found it before I bought the 95 4runner. All the same problems that everyone keeps finding... blown head gasket. 95 Toyota 4runner SR5.

Haven't been able to find the recall info, so if any one knows, please zip me the info


4th Jan 2010, 17:59

My 1993 Toyota 4 Runner just blew both gaskets with no warning whatsoever. They were replaced in 1999 during the recall. I called Toyota today and they will not help me with this second occurrence. What a dilemma! To fix the truck or not when its blue book is probably $3500, and fixing it costs $2100!!!

I too am very upset with Toyota that this problem has clearly never been fixed! I will never buy another Toyota that is for sure!

5th Jan 2010, 19:52

In the past 2 years I have gone through 2 4runners. The first was a 1995, and I was very uneducated about it, and drove it while the head gasket went bad and totally seized up the engine. Sold it for 700 dollars... a loss over 1500 dollars!

Now I have a 94, which already had the v06 campaign done in '99, and once again in August 2008.

Last month in December, the exhaust started pouring white smoke out of it and under the oil cap has become milky. I caught the problem before ruining another engine, but I am still SOL. You can add me to the list for 2 4runners with continuous head gasket problems. Toyota really needs to own up to their quirky 3VZE.

21st Jan 2010, 22:17

95 4runner, same-same! Blown head gaskets. After all this time, has someone come up with a reasonable fix? How about engine swap? Any ideas, cost to much to trash?? Please contact wwalker34@cox.net with any ideas or recommendations, thank you in advance.

25th Jan 2010, 12:33

Another 95 4Runner down with head gaskets. Made it all the way through this thread, hoping for an update on Toyota owning up to this. Filed my complaint on nhtsa.gov.

Count me in if there's a class action.


9th Mar 2010, 08:53

I have a 2004 used Toyota 4 Runner. When I took it to the Toyota dealer yesterday, the guy helping seemed surprised to see a newer model with the blown head gasket issue. I left it overnight for a full inspection, and will find out the gory detail today... What a nightmare..

10th Mar 2010, 19:36

I just traded a 2002 Mercedes for a 95 4runner, thinking it would be a cheaper car. A day later the 4runner blows a head gasket, I owned the benz and took on payments for the Toyota. I feel like I just got royally screwed over; at least the dealer is fixing it for free right now.

5th Apr 2010, 20:03

I too have the same problem. I bought a 95 4runner sr5 from a guy who said he replaced the head gasket and other cooling parts. I told my wife it would be a reliable truck.

My wife is very upset with me. I feel like a loser when it comes to buying used vehicles. I thought this 95 sr5 4runner was the vehicle for me. Beautiful condition runs great, but now has been overheating to the red mark for a couple of days now. I am afraid to drive it.

I will probably have to sell it when the new title comes in for pennies on the dollar. This is really depressing. I want Toyota to pay for this but in reality, that ain't going to happen... Sucks to be me. mrestaban@yahoo.com

18th Apr 2010, 12:42

I join the masses of 95 4 Runner owners who have head gasket issues. My 16 year old son and I just completed a great father son project of replacing the valve cover gaskets. Three days later, the white exhaust coming out of the tail pipe tells us the party is over! My excellent mechanic says its the head gasket and that Toyotas have a problem with a stud on the engine block not letting you torque it down to proper specifications. He has me spooked about even trying to fix this. Looking for a new engine as I type. Bummed out father and son.