14th Jun 2006, 16:25

1994 4Runner - 169,000 miles Head Gasket problem.

As I read the comments here, my well maintained 94' 4runner started idling a little rough the other day. Felt like a plug was going bad in one of the cylinders. It would usually clear in 20 seconds. The other day, it happened for 10 minutes.

Went out to start the vehicle yesterday and it wouldn't start. Thought it was the battery. Replaced it to no avail. Towed it to the dealer where he said he thought it was the starter. It wasn't.

They called and said the motor is frozen. They want $1200 to inspect (not fix) the motor, but suspect it is the head gasket problem known to be a problem on 4runners. Uggh.

I was convinced my Toyota would go to 300K miles, but I guess Toyota had problems with the V6 motor that I happen to have.

Bummed in Tenneessee.

28th Jun 2006, 16:33

Hmm I don't know why you all are complaining.

Every car is going to have problems. My 1988 4runner is just starting to now... I can't find the oil leak, but that's not going to stop me from liking toyota.

You just have to understand that not everything is perfect and get over it.

Why don't you all learn how to fix these kind of problems and do it your self?


2nd Jul 2006, 10:48

I bought my 95 4 runner because of Toyota's track record for Dependability and customer service. Boy did I find out the hard way that this is not true when it comes to this make and model year. Blown head gasket at 135,000 miles. I spent $2000 to fix it and now will sell the vehicle because I know this problem will eventually happen again. This is crazy that Toyota will not own up to the problem. Never again will I own a Toyota.

8th Jul 2006, 12:03

'95 4runner is beginning to run hot and from the sounds of it, a blown gasket isn't too far off. I'm pretty bummed considering I bought it just a couple months ago. Will try for the recall, but I'm not holding my breath. If someone savvy can get a class action together, I think that he/she will have a strong backing and formidable evidence. Good luck to everyone.


12th Jul 2006, 08:49

I have a 1993 4 Runner with a second blown head gasket. It only has 117,000 miles on it. The recall was done on it about 68,000 miles ago. So this is the SECOND Head Gasket that went on this engine V6 3.0l. I drive this truck around town like and old lady, never over 45 mph. I have been fighting with Toyota about this Second Head Gasket going bad. They basically said "Tough Luck" and too bad. I WILL NEVER BUY ANOTHER TOYOTA VEHICLE. Good Luck to all of you out there with this same type of problem. What you have to do is Call Toyota's Main office in Torrance California, 800-331-4331 and report the head gasket issues. Insist on talking to the Service Manager there, his name is Shelton. If you don't talk to Shelton you WILL NOT get anywhere. Tell him about the many documented cases of Head Gasket problems you have read about. Until they have enough documented cases they will do nothing about this. Squeaky Wheel gets the oil. amonterotti@netzero.net.

28th Jul 2006, 17:40

Add another one to the list.

My 95 4runner is having the same problem at 133k miles. Replaced pump, thermostats, radiator, didn't fix the problem.

Thought it was the AC with fan not kicking in, but after that was replaced, still the same problem.

After a run on the highway, car will start spewing out coolant from the res tank. What do you guys do to fix this? Replace head gaskets? Or put a new used engine in?

6th Aug 2006, 15:27

Add another 95 4runner to the list for a blown head gasket. I bought my car used a year ago, and it has 135,000 miles on it. I was driving home from fishing and it blew out. I got on here to see if any body else has he this problem with this make/model. Looks like it's a pretty big issue.

6th Aug 2006, 22:08

Please tell me this isn't another case of the head gasket BS.

I just recently bought a 95 Toyota 4runner and because of the dependability and lore of the long life of toyota vehicles (everyone in the house owns a Toyota, we're currently setting at my 95' 4runner, my dads 91' pickup, and my moms 05' Tacoma)

Everything was running smooth and strong when I got it not 400 miles ago (it's at 168K miles as we speak). Just yesterday it started idling really low and rough, and finally this morning the engine light came on. The more I drive it, the rougher it gets (I've stopped now, it goes into the dealer tomorrow).

When I got it home from work today, the engine was noticeably running A LOT worse than when I fired it up and took off for home at work. I shut it off to get a look at it, and everything was fine, till I fired it up again and it blasted out a bunch of white smoke from the tailpipe.

If it's the same problem as all I've read on this webpage (and I'm almost 100% sure it is now), you can count me in on a lawsuit, this is THE FIRST VEHICLE I HAVE EVER FINANCED!, I bought it about a week ago from a dealership, I haven't even put 500 miles on it myself, so as you can imagine, I'm very, very disappointed in this vehicle, and to think Toyota used to look like platinum in my eyes.....

As it stands, I simply cannot afford the repair bill this is most likely going to require. I don't know what I'm going to do, how I'm going to get around paying the 300 a month payment, how I'm going to get to work, and how I'm going to keep this huge problem from ruining my credit against my will. Someone please help me :(

12th Aug 2006, 21:54

I am waiting to hear if my extended warranty I bought will cover my headgasket in my 95 4 runner.

I too have been lured in by the toyota brand name being so reliable. I will purchase another, not a 4 runner, but a Tacoma. I had too many domestic Lemons to go back that route.

19th Oct 2006, 13:09

I have a 93 4Runner and it's head gasket has already been replaced twice and I think it has just blown again as car is idling rough and drinking coolant. From experience, if you are losing coolant and can't find any leaks you probably have a blown head gasket. I wonder if Toyota ever figured out why or if all their new trucks blow head gaskets too. It's a pretty nasty black mark on Toyota's reputation. Looks like they're taking after Ford -- car explodes after 100,000 miles -- go buy a new one.

30th Oct 2006, 14:25

I have a 1990 4Runner, v6 that has a blown head gasket. Like many of the 95's on this posting, everything was fine until all of a sudden it would start with lots of white smoke coming out the back. Not more than a few days later, BAM! - blown head gasket. I'm joining a class at the local community college and I'm going to see if I can fix it. I see it's no luck chasing after toyota for help. I don't have the 1,800 to pay to have it fixed.

NOTE: a mechanic told me that after the head gasket has blown, not to let the truck sit with the coolant in the engine. It can rust before you have the chance to fix it. Drain the coolant, pull the plugs and spray lots of wd40 into the plug holes. Then make sure you turn the crankshaft over a few times to keep the engine moving and not rusting!