1997 4Runner problems to look for?

Tokarev

Member
Hello!

I've found what looks to be a solid 1997 4-Runner and am seriously thinking about buying it. The overall condition of the vehicle is nice and the owner claims to have maintained the vehicle regularly, etc.

So, other than giving it a good once-over and a test drive, is there anything specific to watch out for? I know the 3.4 engine is reported to be much better in pretty much all departments over the older 3.0. But is there anything that is probematic with these rigs?

TIA!
 

Cackalak Han

Explorer
How many miles? Timing belt and water pump is due at 90k miles. Rear main seals tend to leak at times. Ask for service records to see if all of the fluids have been replaced on a regular basis (engine, coolant, transmission, x-fer case, diffs, etc.). Sway bar bushings and endlinks tend to go at about 100k miles (not a big deal to fix). Maybe steering rack bushings. The rear springs tend to sag with age, too.

Other than that, no other known issues. They're pretty solid rigs. The 3.4L V6's a very stout motors. I've owned 3 and never had problems with any of them.
 

mtnbike28

Expedition Leader
rear axle seals

Just my bad luck, but I had to replace rear axle seals on both my 98 4rnr and 01 Taco after I bought them. Easy to check, just look for "grease" around the rear brake drums. As noted above make sure timing belt has been done if over 90k miles, if not subtract $800 for doing it at the dealer. Otherwise, both have been great!
 

Tokarev

Member
I'm buying the vehicle from the original owner and she says she's always kept it maintained as per Toyota guidelines. The mileage right now is somewhere around 150K and the timing belt was changed at 125K. It leaves no oil on the ground and the owner tells me that it doesn't use any oil between changes.

The only known issue is that the rear window doesn't roll down. That should be a pretty simple fix.
 

mtnbike28

Expedition Leader
sounds great

If you are happy with the money sounds great, I would love to buy a 1 owner, garage keep never off-roaded Toyota.
 
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