3rd Nov 2006, 13:09

Wow. Remind me NEVER to buy a Toyota. And what baffles my mind is that they get away with charging more for cars then domestic brands do, then have some kind of major defect like this and won't fix the problem!

24th Nov 2006, 21:50

I purchased a 1995 Toyota 4-Runner in August with 108,000 miles on it. It ran great for 1,000 miles, then over heated. I thought a radiator hose broke, but my mechanic said the head gasket failed and the estimated repair is $2,700 to $3,500. I have decided to junk the vehicle. Thank you all for your comments, it has helped me understand the problem. I have owned numerous Toyota vehicles and this is my first major problem.

22nd Dec 2006, 09:42

Our engine is gone also! Six months ago we bought a used 95 4runner with only 77,000 miles on it. We thought we would drive this truck for many years. Suddenly the engine started running bad. We had it towed to the Toyota dealer. They told us we needed a new short block. The repair would cost $5,000.00. No way we can afford that. We still have years of payments to make on the purchase of it. All we can do is sell it for parts. I will never buy a Toyota again!


9th Jan 2007, 18:29


I am terrible sorry to you all, I feel your pains. I read nearly all of them and it is staggering how many there are and yet I hear the same thing said about Toyota all the time, "They run forever!" "Legendary reliability" YADA YADA YADA... Sounds like a bunch of CRAP! People are such sheep. It sounds like if anyone talks to an actual Toyota customer they may be surprised.

If I hadn't stumbled upon this thread I would have bought a '95 4runner tomorrow!!! You all saved me!!! It would have been the first car I ever financed too so it would have really sucked. This vehicle sounds like the last thing I need in my life right now. Good luck with your next purchases!

25th Jan 2007, 17:36

Another one for the ever growing list... I have a 1995 4Runner Limited which I bought new in 12/05. I have pampered the car for its 148,000 miles and yesterday I noticed the idle was rough. Within 15 miles, the check engine light came on and this morning, there was white smoke billowing from the exhaust. Dealer says, "it's either a head gasket or a cracked block." There was no mention of any recalls nor a history of problems. Fortunately, the car never got hot so I may escape with "only" the expense of a couple of head gaskets and labor. I also own a 2006 Sequoia Limited, which I love, so this is bitter sweet.

31st Jan 2007, 11:48

Yes, I too share in the misery of the blown head gasket. I have a 1995 4-Runner limited that I bought over a year ago. It only had 125,000 miles on it then, and now it has 137,000 and a blown head gasket. I never had any warning! I drove it home from watching football at a friend's house and it just started to overheat. I drove it to my mechanic (who does not do head gasket jobs) and he tested the compression in the cylinders, looked at the white smoke bellowing out of the exhaust, and showed me the white "gunk" that is all around my oil filling cap and told me "uh oh".

He changed the thermostat (which was bad) and it stopped the overheating... so I drove it a couple more days without a problem (less the white smoke). I never saw any antifreeze on the dipstick, or an excess of oil dipstick levels (as was told I would), but it most certainly went through engine coolant.

Now, it is being worked on by a friend of my mechanic's who told me I should have my timing chain (belt) replaced, since he has to go through it to do everything else. He hasn't told me how much it will cost yet, but I'm sure it will be around $2,000.00.

I guess I'm getting it fixed and trading it in. Please let me know what is going on with any recall info that you hear of. My e-mail is sking4@stny.rr.com. Thanks for any help you can give.

1st Feb 2007, 22:52

Hi all, add me to the list of 95 4runners with blown head gaskets. Currently have 206000 kms and was driving home from work, motor started to miss and lost some power. Stopped at the store on the way home, had problems re-starting afterwards. Got it started after third try, got the car home just in time for the giant clouds of white smoke and coolant to start blowing out from the exhaust. The ironic thing is that I'm a certified auto technician and have been working at a dealership for the past 5 yrs. I also found the dreaded white deposits on #6 spark plug, I have always maintained my vehicle and have always known bout this problem with these motors. I've called a buddy who works as a service writer at the nearby Toyota dealership and was told the same thing, not covered under your VIN, take it up with Toyota Canada, blah, blah, blah. I will be fixing problem myself of course, but just another waste of time and money (at least I save on labor). Will be getting rid of the truck shortly after repairs are finished and getting into a 03 Honda Pilot, was considering 03 4runner, but not anymore.

21st Feb 2007, 23:07

Add another 1995 4-runner to the list with problems with the head gaskets. I cannot believe that such an outstanding company would not step up and at least assist with such costly repairs, especially when it is apparent what is happening is not just an isolated case of neglect. I really like the vehicle, but cannot afford to go thru such a repair over and over. It really makes the vehicle a throw away if you cannot do it yourself or find a good mechanic that will do it on the side. HONDA HERE I COME.

8th Mar 2007, 23:28

I am right there with you all. I recently purchased a '95 4 Runner, that was well taken care of. I got it from a friend at a very reasonable price. It had 210,000 miles on it. It looked and ran good. It needed tires and a alignment. It also had a oil leak. I made a appointment to have the tires installed next week. I took the vehicle down to my mechanic today to have him check out the oil leak. He just called me with the news...yep, it is the head gasket. I am glad I read up on this problem prior to investing any more money into this vehicle. So sad, I really did like Toyota.

17th Mar 2007, 12:19

I'm another person profoundly grateful for this site and these reports. I just wish I'd found them before my third, and last ever, Toyota. As a journalist in the outdoor fishing industry, I hope to spread the word a few tens of thousands of times.

2nd Apr 2007, 11:42

Heres another notch to the list. I have or now had a 1995 4runner. I bought it back around 80,000miles and now about 120,000. pretty much ever since I had it, there has been a small oil leak. by the time I would change the oil on the schedule (3000 or 3 months) I might loose anywhere from a half to 3/4 of my oil. So I would usually top it off in between changes.

Well, last weekend (Friday) I go to leave from work and when I start it, the car started funny... had to turn the key twice which was unusual. and it seem to putter for a minute or so then acted fine. drove home and nothing out of the ordinary.

Later that night got in it to go to the store and I had to turn the key about 10 times before it would start. every time I got it to start, but it would putter, then die. so after I got it going it would putter until I got up to about 15-20 mph, then it seemed fine.

Didn't drive it Saturday. Did an oil change. We had some hard rain on Thursday and Friday, thinking maybe some water got in the gas tank and an oil change wouldn't hurt. after the change, started it up and seemed fine, so OK.

Then on Sunday, got in it and it started just fine, backed out of the driveway and two houses down the road I notice the white smoke of death. So I drove back home.

Parked it. upon first inspection, couldn't find anything wrong. proceeded to check/change spark plugs. Did the passenger side and they all were pretty bad and replaced them. Then got over to the drivers side and removed one plug. I saw something shiny. got the flash light and the shininess was green! so now I know there is coolant where it shouldn't be.

I am going to miss my truck...