17th Feb 2004, 14:23

Regarding the dashboard rattle, there is a Technical Service Bulletin (TSB) for it. The TSB# is NV006-02, and should be covered by warranty. www.alldata.com has all of them listed.

As for the oil change: my 2002 Tacoma has a hole in the skid plate for the oil drain plug; just need a 2" ratchet extender to get to the bolt. The filter was extremely tight the first time I changed my oil, and the awkward placement of it made it very hard to remove. I found the only way is to lay on my back just behind the driver's side front tire and reach up to the filter with my right hand, going just behind the suspension arm. Note that it will leak a little oil onto the skid plate that will drain off the back of it (have your drip pan ready).

Aside from the rattly dash, I also had the clutch click noise early on, which has now turned into an awful squeal. Other boards say it's a busted bushing/bearing; all I know is the dealership WILL fix it (I will make sure they do).

Another strange issue was a dead fly behind the glass of my instrument panel. Didn't notice it until I was cleaning the dash the first time, but hopefully will be gone when they take the dash out to fix the rattle.

Other than that, the truck has been great! 2002 TRD Extra cab 4x4 V6 with moon roof.

11th Apr 2004, 19:47

I have a 2001 Tacoma X-cab 4x4 TRD V6. It's a great truck and has performed mostly quite well. The comments here have helped a lot of my problems with it, especially the squeaky/rattling dashboard. I'll try the "foam fix" as soon as I get home.

Specifically, I was wondering if anyone else had problems with front rotors/brakes on these trucks? My truck vibrates (sometimes terribly) anytime I brake for the past 4 months, especially above 60 mph. I've turned the front rotors, put on new pads and still had the problem. Then an East Coast Toyota dealer (we were on a cross country trip) told me it was back brakes, so I turned the drums and put on new brake shoes. Still had the problem. Now our local West Coast dealer told me the rotors were warped and under spec, the drums were out of round, and the pads and shoes needed replacing! I do all the work on it my self, but neither I nor my father-in-law (who restores cars) can find anything wrong. Should I just buy new Toyota rotors (at $120 each) and hope it works, or buy the cheap rotors online for $40 each, or... any ideas?

15th Apr 2004, 23:27

Hi Folks,

02 ext Cab Trd. Experienced the dash rattle. Took it to the dealer and got it fixed under warranty. While discussing the problem with the dealership, it was obvious that toyota was well aware of it and I got the truck back the same day. Dealership also noticed that the power steering pump was leaking and replaced it. Anyone else seen a problem with the steering pump?

29th Apr 2004, 21:36

I just purchased a 2002 Tacoma Ext cab, v6 TRD, with 2,800 miles. I immediately noticed a dash rattle, but it is sporadic, and I couldn't get it to occur while at the dealer. For everyone out there, did you have a constant rattle in the dash, or was it sporadic? Thanks!

29th Jun 2004, 22:40

I've got a 2002 2.7L ext cab Tacoma 4x4, and I too have had a rattling/squeaking dash. But it only occurs when the outside temp is below freezing. Will try the foam to see if it helps--won't find out for a while.

I have 71000 miles on mine and the tire wear is great and haven't had any other problems to speak of.

16th Aug 2004, 02:39


I own a 2.7L 2001 Tacoma 4x4. I have noticed since I bought the vehicle about a year ago that there has been a steady decline in my fuel economy. I have replaced the air filter and consistently checked the tire pressure, and have still noticed a decline. Does anyone else have this problem? If so, what is the remedy? Also, with regard to the the squeaky/rattly dashboard, is that repair covered under a normal factory, power-train warranty, or would I need a more comprehensive one? Just wondering.

27th Nov 2004, 06:48

To the guy who's noticed the gas mileage go down in his Toyota. Have you changed your cap and rotor, sparkplugs, PCV valve? And use a can of "Restore" in the oil. The restore helps keep the motor run like new. You can get the details from the can. Use one can with every oil change. You can use it with all types of oil. You can go to any auto store and get this. When you change your plugs use "AC Delco or NGK or Champion" Anything else is a waste of $$. You can also try putting your tailgate down. You can get about 50 miles or more to a tank of gas. Try shifting between 2500 and 3000 rpm. Hope this helps.

Looking to get a Tacoma for myself.


14th Apr 2005, 21:09

I have a 2002 Tacoma TRD double cab. I have experienced some rattling also, but I think it is coming from both driver's and passenger's side mirrors. they are moved electronically. I am wondering if it is caused by wind or bumps. I also have a huge problem with brake dust, but plan to change the front pads soon. Other than that, I will always have a toyota.

9th May 2005, 07:52


Yep still have the Truck, its been a while so I thought I'd update the status of what been going on with this Truck. Since my original review and update postings along the way things have progressed.

Okay first off, the air conditioning went on me while still under warranty around the 60,000km mark. The Dealer fixed it no charge.

Second, bad water leak on the Driver-side. It went in the same time the airconditioning quit and the Dealer said it was because of the air conditioner failure...?

So they ripped up the carpet and put all new stuff in, but the water leak continued. It took three more visits to the Dealer to resolve the water leak issue. They finally had to take the driver side fender completely off and seal between the inner fender well and the firewall. I guess there wasn't any sealer on the joint from the factory and the water would just run into the cab pooling on the floor. After they "sealed" it I have not had a water leak since, problem solved.

The annoying dash rattle appeared around the 70,000km mark and seems to be worse in cold weather and goes away in warmer temperatures. What I've done is cut small strips of black foam rubber about 1/2" wide and stuffed it between the window and the dash board plastic. This worked and the rattle went away.

Third, the rear shocks started to cause the truck to handle strangely especially under a medium load. The shocks did not appear to be damaged in any way or leaking anything, but the rear of the Truck would bounce and sometimes cause the Truck to sway or skip over large bumps. I replace the original OEM TRD Bilsteins with Toyota replacement TRD Bilsteins shocks just like what originally came on it. The handling improved 100%. The original shocks must have screwed up internally or something another problem solved.

The Truck now has 107,000km on it and is still going strong. I plan to keep it until it finally dies.

I still stand by my original review that started all the reply postings.


23rd Jul 2005, 14:56

I've got an 04 v6, 3.4 tacoma with 18,000 miles. I was out of town and noticed some leaking near the transfer case. I took it to a dealer in PA and determined a bad leak from the top of the case. Replaced entire unit free of charge. Other than that, it just seems to wear the tread on the rear tires more than it should. About1/4 inch of the tread continues to wear on the outsides of the tires.. I don't know?

18th Oct 2005, 21:51

I have an 02 Taco TRD 4x4 xtra Cab, V6, Step-side with custom fibreglass cap, 45000km.

I must have a good one - no rattle, leaks or noises so far. It is a bit hard on tires with those 265 70 R16's, but it looks great!

Gas mileage (Canadian gallons) is about 18 mpg around town, about 24 mpg driving hard (120 kmh) or 28 mpg driving sensibly at 80-90 kmh (seldom happens!)

It is my 5th Toyota 4x4, love these trucks!


26th Aug 2012, 19:27

Dash rubs against the windshield.

7th Apr 2016, 12:56

There was a TSB about this issue which involves adding spacers at the dashboard mounts. I found a cheaper solution online, which I also did with my 2002 Tacoma.

Tools & supplies needed:

1) Wooden paint mixing stick.

2) About 4 feet of 1/2 inch diameter rubber hose.

Use the wooden stick to push the rubber hose in the crevice between dashboard and windshield frame. Rattling noise went away forever.