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3rd Gen 4Runner Buyer's Guide

Discussion in '3rd Gen 4Runners (1996-2002)' started by Ripcord, Jun 2, 2015.

  1. Jun 2, 2015 at 4:41 AM
    #1
    Ripcord

    Ripcord [OP] New Member

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    Jim
    Columbus, OH
    To all those who are new members of the forum, WELCOME!! I hope you enjoy your stay. To those viewing this that are unregistered, feel free to join us and ask questions. We are a true community here, we help each other on and offline.


    This thread will serve as a resource to all prospective buyers of 3rd generation 4runners.
    If you have questions of what to look out for and what trim model is right for you, this is where you should be able to find your answer. The information here is meant to be purely informative. If you have any further questions on a topic that may have not been covered, just search or post a reply, the helpful members of this forum will help you find your answer. If you find a promising 4runner, post it up so we can dissect it. And to forum members who spot an error in this guide, please do not hesitate to notify me so I can fix it.






    Contents / Outline:

    Post 2- Known Issues & Red Flags, Maintenance Items.

    Post 3- Transfer case differences, E-locker, TRAC/VSC, 5-speed, 4Cyl information.

    Post 4- Trim Levels Differences/ overview

    Post 5- Mid-generation upgrades.

    Post 6- Wheel Variations, $ Pricing & Searching Information.

    Post 7- New Owners section: Tune up pointers, Supercharger info, Basic Starter Modifications, Beginner FAQ

    --------------------------
    But to start off, here is a little summary of the 3rd gen 4runner. It was written by J.A. He is much more descriptive than I am.
    Toyota 4Runner History 1996

    And another, more maintenance oriented thread, with a lot of data and part numbers from iH8mud(.com):
    3rd Gen 4Runner FAQs

    Here is the PDF of the Toyota Field Service Manual (FSM) for the 3rd gen. It has instructions and diagrams of EVERY SINGLE mechanical/electrical/body component on these trucks.
    http://www.ncttora.com/fsm/1996/SIL/index.html

    And be sure to check out the 4Runner Wiki page:
    Toyota 4Runner - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    -------------------------------------------


    -The 3rd generation Toyota 4Runner was available from 1996 through 2002. There are basically 3 SUB-generations within the 3rd gen. '96-'98, '99-'00, and '01-'02.
    You may want to keep track of the options each of these SUB-gens had, in order to help you make a list of what you want and which years had it..

    -The 3rd generation 4Runner is a body-on-frame truck based SUV with Independent front suspension (IFS) and solid rear axle with coil springs in the front and rear.

    -It was available with two engines, the 2.7L 4 cyl with 150 HP and the more common 3.4L V6 with 183 HP. The 4runner came with a 4-speed Automatic transmission or an optional 5-speed manual transmission. After 2000, The 5-speed and 4cyl engine were discontinued. It was also available in many different trim levels; base, SR5, Limited, ‘highlander’ model, sport package, and the sport edition. These will all be covered later in the guide.

    -MPG (miles per gallon) is rated at 16/19 (city/HW) for V6/auto/4wd models. Real world numbers on a well-maintained, stock vehicle are more like 18/20+
    Other options such as 5-speed, 4cyl, 2wd will change that number slightly.

    ==============================================================

    If you find yourself at a loss with all of our acronyms, here is a helpful list:
    May God have mercy on my soul for linking to a thread from a Jeep forum, but it is a very comprehensive list. :hiding:

    Acronym List

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 5, 2016
    AZHoosier and 4Runnernut like this.
  2. Jun 2, 2015 at 4:41 AM
    #2
    Ripcord

    Ripcord [OP] New Member

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    Jim
    Columbus, OH
    STRAWBERRY MILKSHAKE: Radiator/ Transmission Failure (automatic transmissions only)
    While it is a rare occurrence, the most notorious and costly of the known issues is by far, the “strawberry milkshake.” Also known as the ‘pink milkshake’, the cause of the issue is in the pipes in the lower part of the radiator that cools the transmission. The lines are known to corrode and allow the mixing of engine coolant and transmission coolant fluids. The root of this corrosion is from the buildup of minerals in the radiator, regular coolant flushing is a good way to slow this buildup.

    When the two fluids mix, the mixture overflows into the coolant overflow reservoir with a fluid that looks a lot like a strawberry milkshake (may be a different color if you dont have TOYOTA red coolant..). If the mixture manages to return to the transmission, it can cause catastrophic damage. Often resulting in a ruined transmission. When a milkshake strikes, you will notice your transmission will not want to shift or hold a gear when moving.

    -As stated above, this will only happen to trucks with automatic transmissions. This typically starts to become a concern when the truck gets to be about 8-10 years old. Or even sooner if it is a rusty truck.

    Red flags:
    As far as detecting one that may have already happened.. When the seller mentions anything about a replaced radiator and transmission having been completely flushed at the same time, that is a BIG sign. If it has a new or rebuilt transmission, make sure it was a dealer install or at least a certified Toyota mechanic. However, if immediate action is taken when a milkshake hits (pull over, shut down, tow to mechanic), the transmission can be saved and should be just fine after a few flushes and a new radiator.

    And for predicting one that may be coming.. Regularity of coolant flushes and vehicle age are the only ways. Service records are important for this reason.

    Fixes/ How to avoid:
    Except for regular coolant flushes as I mentioned before, there are two ways to really avoid a strawberry milkshake. The first is to just replace the radiator before anything happens; every 8 years is a good interval to set for replacement. The second way to avoid the milkshake is to install an external transmission cooler that is separate from the radiator. This removes the possibility of the milkshake ever happening as the radiator and coolant are removed from the equation. Or, if you’re wanting to really do it right, do both of these things. The new radiator will be about $150 (Koyo 1998A) and the external transmission cooler will be at least $60 (B&M 70268).

    Which method to choose?
    -The new radiator is the better option, as these trucks are ready for a new one anyway with the age they are getting to.
    -Those in extremely hot climates are advised to go with a bigger external cooler. The B&M 70264 is the bigger one, compared to the 70268 that most people get.
    -Those who tow more than normal or wheel the truck often are advised to go with both, get all the cooling you can get! (external cooler in series with radiator cooling from new radiator)
    -Even though both options will have a cold fluid bypass valve, those in cold climates are advised to at least opt for the new radiator, as it supposedly helps to warm the transmission during the first few minutes.




    -As just mentioned, it is a rare failure. But, the costs of preventative maintenance outweigh the costs of repair by thousands of dollars. That is why we stress the fixes as much as we do.


    Resource Threads:
    http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-g...radiator-design-questions-pink-milkshake.html
    http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-gen-t4rs/88642-sweet-strawberry-milkshake-fml.html
    http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-gen-t4rs/98699-how-common-pink-milkshake.html
    http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-g...oler-transmission-cooler-install-3rd-gen.html

    43642d1304215644-sweet-strawberry-milkshake-fml-img_1006.jpg
    Photo courtesy of Jon.



    ====================================================================


    RUST

    The 4runner is susceptible to rust just as any other vehicle is. As you should know, it is mainly caused from driving on salted winter roads, in humid areas, and even if you are dumb enough to drive on the beach. The main places you will find the rust is on the frame, trailer hitch, suspension components and rear axle.

    Red flags:
    There are a few areas where you can be aware of rust without looking under the truck, such as the trailer hitch, wheel wells and bumpers. If there are not any provided pictures of the undercarriage of the vehicle, request some from the seller. Also, watch out for areas where rust may have been spray painted over. The area will look very bumpy and corroded as if rust was there, but have a fresh coat of paint on it.

    Fixes/ How to Avoid:
    There are a few ways to avoid rusting on your vehicle. One is to coat the under body of the vehicle with petroleum based oil, motor oil works fine but is illegal to use is some states. There are also other specialized products that are made for this application.

    Here is some on a rear axle.
    29848d1276027951-99-4x4-limited-w-elocker-worth-tcase.jpg
    Photo courtesy of secretagnt.


    =================================================================


    WARPED BRAKE ROTORS/ DEATH WOBBLE

    The design of the OEM 4Runner brake rotors is a poor. The rotors are too thin. During periods of heavy, constant braking, the brakes can easily overheat and become warped. This problem is even more common on 4runners that are lifted and have larger tires. The shuddering when braking with severely warped rotors can be so violent that it can nearly cause loss of control of the vehicle. Warped rotors can also cause issues with the Anti-lock braking system trying to kick in while braking.

    Fixes/ How to Avoid:
    If you are just going to replace the rotors, get ones that are drilled or slotted to help it stay cooler. Although, this way there is less braking surface. The best option is to swap the entire brake assembly (calipers, rotors, and pads) with that of a 1st generation Toyota Tundra (2000-2006). This "Tundra Brake upgrade" has many advantages to a slotted/drilled OEM replacement. With tundra brakes, the braking power is significantly increased, the rotors last longer, and they are not as vulnerable to warping (all rotors are vulnerable, depending on driving style).

    Other Info:
    This upgrade is a direct bolt on replacement. The tundra brake calipers are available in 2 sizes, 199mm and 231mm, both diameters require new rotors that are much thicker than the 4runner rotors so they wont warp as easily. The 231mm (13WL) calipers will fit in the OEM 16" wheels, but just barely. The 199mm (S13WE) calipers are a bit smaller than the 231 and fit inside the wheel nearly the same as the bigger of the stock 4runner calipers (on limiteds and sports), they are also a little bit cheaper option most of the time. Both caliper sizes will need new pads and rotors (same size rotor for both sizes of caliper). The parts for this upgrade can cost over $300, but can be well worth it.

    Tundra Brake Upgrade - PC'd my Calipers High Gloss Red - YotaTech Forums
    http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-g...ements-231mm-13wl-tundra-calipers-rotors.html
    Tundra Rotors vs. 4Runner Rotors
    56a055da.jpg
    Photo courtesy of BigFishAllDay.




    ====================================================================


    LOWER BALL JOINT FAILURE

    Don't get too freaked out, this is also a fairly uncommon problem. It is mostly an issue of failure to maintain, or if someone disregarded the Recall. In 2005, Toyota recalled over 3/4 of a million 3rd gen 4Runners for this exact issue. The issue is that the Lower ball joint, which holds the spindle and control arms together, can rupture while driving. This will cause the wheel to fall off, break the CV axle on that side, and cause total loss of control which can lead to an accident. The lower ball joint can wear faster than normal on trucks that are lifted, have an aftermarket bumper, and larger tires. This issue will become a concern if the vehicle was called for recall and never brought in, or if the Ball Joints have a very large number of miles on them.

    Red Flags:
    Stuff like this is the reason you want to test drive. There is only a few ways to know about this potential hazard. If there is any front end noise, rough feeling when steering then that is a sign of trouble ahead. You can lift up the truck and check for excessive play in the front hub. A visual check is also a good way, look for old and worn out material, leaking grease, etc. Just do a quick forum search of 'lower ball joint' and you will find all kinds of stuff.

    Instructions to check for excessive ball joint play:
    http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-g...-ball-joint-inspection-testing-procedure.html


    Fixes/ How to Avoid:
    It's simple really, just swap them before something bad happens. Only advice I can give is to only use OEM parts, there are so many horror stories about people using cheap aftermarket brands like Moog. A few members have also figured out that the OEM Tacoma LBJ from the same years are stronger than the 4runner LBJ, link below.
    As stated earlier, there was a large-scale recall on this issue, mostly on the '99-'02 years. Stop by your dealer with your VIN and see if your vehicle is still pending the recall.

    To check the Toyota maintenance records on your 4runner, register the VIN on Toyota Owners' website:
    http://www.toyota.com/owners/web/pages/home


    Resource threads:
    Tacoma Ball Joints
    http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-gen-t4rs/67793-you-should-replace-your-ball-joints.html
    http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-gen-t4rs/84794-ball-joint-failure-my-turn.html

    Recall information:
    http://www.toyota-4Runner.org/problems-warranty-issues/71656-2001-lower-ball-joint-recall.html
    Motor Trend- 2001 4Runner Recall


    Lower ball joint.jpg
    Photo courtesy of sprockmember.


    ====================================================================
    ====================================================================



    Small Common Problems:
    Just a few more small things to take a look at while you are looking for a 4runner.

    Dead Clock.
    The clocks on all 3rd gens are known to just die all of the sudden. No warning sings, but easy fix. You can also just get one from a junkyard 4runner.
    -http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-g...nner-digital-clock-revived-tooth-surgery.html

    Rear Coil Springs Sagging.

    Earlier 3rd gens had a recall on the rear springs, but all 3rd gens are known to sag. Almost any 4runner you go to look at will be sagging. Best fix is to get new OEM springs or go ahead and get lifted. The springs from a 1999 are going to be taller than other springs, so if you replace yours, ask for springs from a 99 SR5 4x4 3.4L V6.
    -http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-gen-t4rs/48552-about-rear-sag.html
    -http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-gen-t4rs/88831-rear-coil-advice-2002-sr5-sport-4wd.html

    Power Antenna Motor Failure.
    A very common issue. The gears in the power antenna motor can grind and get broken. Also if the antenna gets bent, it will not go down properly and will also cause the gears to grind. The common fix is to swap the motorized antenna assembly with a non-motorized antenna out of a 1st generation Tacoma. Search "Tacoma Whip mod" for more info.
    -http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-gen-t4rs/33650-power-antenna-motor.html

    Leaking Rear Axle Seal
    The cause of this issue is the seal at the bearings on the rear axle. The failure in question is credited to a few things; one is the apparent poor design or quality of the OEM axle seals. Another is a failure of the axle breather plug to not accommodate the changes in pressures inside the axle. It is also common for this to occur when you switch to the thinner Synthetic Fluids. It is noticeable by a large amount of grease that will cover the rear tires and wheels. When you notice a seal has begun to leak, you can either have a dealer replace them, or do it yourself with the help of the write-up that has been linked to below.
    http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-g...e-information-replacement-thread-3rd-gen.html

    ====================================================================
    ====================================================================



    Regular Maintenance Items:

    Here is a thread that will help with many of the maintenance, repairs and modifications you may need to get done.
    http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-gen-t4rs/69744-tutorial-documentation-reference.html
    Links to all of the below maintenance items can be found here.

    Another good resource to check out is the NCTTORA FSM, it contains diagrams and step by step instructions for prettymuch every single component on these trucks.
    http://www.ncttora.com/fsm/1996/SIL/index.html


    -TIMING BELT / WATER PUMP- Every 90k miles. This service costs $600-$700 at most dealers. Make sure the seller is up to date on this one!

    -TRANSMISSION FLUID- About every 40k miles. At the dealer: $80 transmission service.

    -DIFFERENTIAL FLUIDS & ENGINE COOLANT- About every 30k miles. At the dealer: $130 4x4 differentials service.

    -LOWER BALL JOINT REPLACEMENT- About every 150k miles. Sooner on lifted vehicles.

    -SPARK PLUGS & WIRES- Every 30-40k miles. Less than $50 for everything, easy DIY.

    -ENGINE OIL- 3k miles for regular oil, 6k miles for synthetic.

    -Everything else like lights and brakes are based on usage and not necessarily miles.




    The 3rd gen 4runner is often regarded as the most reliable and dependable of all the 4runners. The 3.4L V6 developed by Hino (owned by Toyota) was designed specifically to be a trouble-free workhorse. When properly maintained, your 4runner will go well beyond 400k miles and last for generations to come.
     
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2015
    Shewdoc and 4Runnernut like this.
  3. Jun 2, 2015 at 4:42 AM
    #3
    Ripcord

    Ripcord [OP] New Member

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    3rd gen Drivetrain chart.jpg


    ==============================================




    Transfer Case differences:

    The 4wd t-cases in the 3rd gen 4runners varied through the years and trim models as well. ALL 4runners are 2wd vehicles (rear wheel drive) until some form of 4wd is engaged.


    -Let’s start with base, SR5, and Highlander trim models. The transfer case remained the same for these models from 1996 to 2000. It was a basic J-shaped shifting configuration. This transfer case was purely mechanical, no push button components.

    -The limited 4runners had a little bit different setup though. From 1996-1998, Toyota used a push button on the shifter to engage 4Hi from 2wd. The only time you actually need to shift the transfer case is to go into 4Lo.

    -In ’99-’00, the limited upgraded from a standard transfer case with push button, over to a differential type transfer case (known as Multi-Mode). This type of transfer case still has a push button to engage 4wd from 2wd. A differential type t-case is different from a standard t-case in that the front and rear drive shafts could rotate independent of each other and avoid binding on high traction surfaces. Until this center differential was locked, the vehicle is essentially in all wheel drive (discussed more below).
    To lock the T-case, you simply shift from 4Hi to 4Hi(L).

    -In 2001 and 2002, all models gained these Multi-Mode transfer cases (including limited, now they all have the same system). But, the locking method changed from a separate shifting position to a separate push button on the dash.


    http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-g...rs-3rd-gens-transfer-case-awd-multi-mode.html
    I HIGHLY encourage you to read this thread skillfully written by Brian2sun. It is more in depth and contains information such as recommended speeds, shifting configurations, Pictures, Uses, and more differences.
    The information above is a summary of the information in his thread.




    ===============================================





    Rear diff E-locker vs. Center diff locker:


    Rear E-locker
    -On all 1996-2000 4Runners, there was an option to add an electronic locking rear differential. It was never standard on any trim package, just an option. The e-locker was discontinued after 2000 and was not offered again on the 4runner until 2009 (trail edition). FJ cruisers and Tacomas also had e-lockers (TRD off-road package). If you are unable to find a 4runner with one, they can be swapped in to any 4runner from '96-'02. Most elocker retrofits cost an average of $500.

    What is it?
    Lockers are actuators that are fit inside the differentials of vehicles' axles. When the rear e-locker is engaged, the rear axle is locked together and both rear wheels must always spin at the same speed. A locked axle must NEVER be used on road. When the e-locker is disengaged, the axle again operates as an 'open' diff. This rear e-locker is helpful in very low traction off road situations, when an ‘open’ diff is hindering progress by allowing one of the wheels on an axle to spin while the other wheel that actually has traction receives no power.

    Factory settings only allow the e-locker to be engaged if the vehicle is already in 4Lo. There is a modification known as the "Gray wire mod" that can be done to allow it to be activated at any time, but before you do that be sure you are aware of why Toyota set it up that way.. The e-locker is supposed to only be used when even 4Lo is not enough. For 99% of drivers out there, they will never even see a time when 4Lo is not enough.

    The button to engage the e-locker is found on the dash to the left of the steering wheel. It says "RR Diff Lock" in orange print.
    Diff lock button rear.jpg


    To better understand diffs and lockers, watch this video.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gIGvhvOhLHU


    ---------------------------------------------------------------------

    Center diff locker/ Multi-Mode AWD
    A Center differential is a special type of transfer case that can be unlocked/locked. But as we just covered, only ’01-’02 4runners and ’99-’00 limited 4runners had this Multi-mode ability to unlock/lock the center diff.

    As discussed earlier, AWD (all wheel drive) is when the front and rear drive-shafts leaving the transfer-case can rotate independent of each other. AWD (center diff unlocked/open) is the only safe way to deliver power to all four wheels on high traction surfaces such as paved roads. Think of this as another "open" Diff, but instead of wheels at the end of these drive-shafts (axles), there is just the front or rear diff & axles. AWD is meant for ice covered roads where "true 4x4" should still not be used. True 4x4 is where the center diff is locked like a regular transfer-case always is. With this transfer case locked, both front and rear drive-shafts must spin at the same speed. Having the center diff locked is bad for on road use becuase when you corner, the front wheels make a larger diameter turn than the rear wheels And that means the rear drive-shaft needs to spin at a different speed to keep pace with the front.. which it cant if the transfer-case is locked.

    -On 1999-2000 Limiteds, the locking method was a separate shifting position.
    -On all the 2001 & 2002 models, the button to lock/unlock the center diff replaced the button for the discontinued e-locker:
    Diff lock button center.jpg

    In terms of off road ability, the unlock/lock feature on the Multi-Mode t-case does not add anything. It only helps sketchy on road conditions. The rear e-locker is the only option above normal 4wd that actually increases off road ability.



    How do I choose between these?

    -If you live in an area with ice covered winter roads, heavy rain, and you tend to be more of a city driver, the Multi-mode selectable AWD is going to be indispensable to you. It makes icy roads easy to tackle.

    -If you tend to do more off-roading and plan to modify the 4runner for a trails vehicle, the rear e-locker is going to help you a lot with that goal.

    -The '99-'00 limited 4runner had both of these if you can find one with the e-locker option.



    ===========================================



    TRAC/VSC:

    To replace the E-locker that was discontinued after 2000, Toyota equipped ALL 2001 & 2002 4Runners with a few electronic systems in it's place. TRAC (traction control) & VSC (vehicle stability control).
    Basically, these systems use the brakes to control vehicle stability and traction. While the normal everyday driver will not notice these systems in operation, owners who drive their vehicles in a "spirited" manner will notice interference from these systems. In low-traction road conditions (dirt roads, wet pavement, etc..), drivers may easily cause either of these systems to interfere in attempt to control the vehicle in the event of loss of traction.


    Disabling TRAC/VSC:
    With a few small exceptions, these systems were not able to be disabled from the factory. Many owners choose to make it possible to manually disable these systems.

    -2wd 4Runners came with a factory switch to disable TRAC & VSC.

    -On 4wd's, VSC is disabled when the vehicle is in 4x4 with the center differential locked. TRAC still remains on in this situation. This is the ideal setup for most off road situations, as TRAC helps in most situations by acting as a limited slip differential for all 4 wheels. Situations where it is best to also be without TRAC would include deep sand and mud

    -Members on Yotatech(.com) discovered a way to add a switch to be able to turn off both TRAC & VSC at any time. Known as the Andymod 2.0.




    ==========================================



    5-Speed manual transmission:

    The 3rd gen 4runner was also available with a 5-speed manual transmission. The 5-speed is often preferred for its off road uses, increased fuel economy, and the lack of the Strawberry milkshake issue.

    Similar to the E-locker and 4cyl engine, the 5-speed was discontinued after 2000. Also, the 5-speed was NEVER available on the Limited 4Runner.

    5-speed_shifter.jpg
    Photo courtesy of JohnsD90.




    ==========================================


    4-Cylinder - 3RZ-FE:

    The 3rd gen 4runner was also available with a 4 Cylinder engine. The 3RZ-FE is often compared to the 3.4L V6 in most other 3rd gens.

    The advantages to the this engine are that it has a timing chain vs. a Timing belt in the V6. So that's one less thing to have to maintain. The 4cyl also gets slightly better Mpgs, I'm talking like 2-3mpg increase over the v6. As far as reliability, both of these engines are extremely solid pieces of machinery. Both are known to last beyond 300k+ miles without problems. But becuase of the timing chain, the reliability award goes to the 4cyl.

    The Disadvantages, however, are obvious. This engine is a snail.. the 3.4 is known to be a slow engine, so imagine how the 4cyl feels. Also, the 4cyl is only available on the base model 4runners, so if you plan on getting a higher-up trim model, its a no-go on the 4Cyl. And don't ever plan on towing anything significant. While it's an excellent engine, it just doesn't have the power to keep up.

    Similar to the E-locker and 5-speed trans, the 4-cyl was discontinued after 2000.


    [​IMG]
    Photo courtesy of ChildrenOfBodom.





    ============================================================


    ============================================================
     
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2015
  4. Jun 2, 2015 at 4:42 AM
    #4
    Ripcord

    Ripcord [OP] New Member

    Joined:
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    Columbus, OH
    SR5 HIGHLANDER (Sport)

    -This trim model was available from 1999 to 2000. It was never officially 'badged' as the highlander, the only place it actually says highlander is on the original window sticker. Most people simply call these Sport 4runners.

    -Notable features include the standard Hood Scoop, black or wood grain interior trim pieces, cloth sport seats, color-keyed bumpers, fender flares (black SR5 flares in ’99, color-keyed limited flares in ’00), Limited '5-star' wheels, roof rack, fog lights, Larger brakes, Optional 5-speed manual transmission and optional Rear electronic locking differential. It is very common to find these with the e-locker option, but not a guarantee.

    -4.10:1 diff gear ratio without elocker, 4.30:1 with elocker. (usually)

    -Highlander models with the rare combination of 4x4, 5-speed, and E-locker are commonly regarded as the most ‘off-road capable' of all 3rd gen 4runners, and are very desirable.

    Colors:
    The highlander trim model was available in Imperial Jade Mica green and Black. In 2000, this package was additionally available in Millennium Silver.

    -In 2001 the ‘Highlander’ package was removed from 4Runners and made into a completely new vehicle. The all new Toyota Highlander. The new Toyota highlander was a unibody, car-based SUV compared to the 4runner’s rugged body-on-frame design.
    Resource: Toyota 4Runner Highlander Information

    RedRocks030_e348422c21e0e4a5e3062c79ca0c56a799b049cf.jpg
    Photo courtesy of RonMAIDEN.




    ------------------------------------------

    SR5 - SPORT EDITION:

    -Available from 2001-2002, the Sport is the continuation of the highlander package. In 2001 it was known as the ‘Sport Package’ and in 2002 it was finally badged as the ‘Sport Edition’.

    -Notable features include the standard Hood Scoop, Silver sport interior trim pieces, premium sound, cloth sport seats, color-keyed bumpers, Limited style fender flares, fog lights, keyless Entry, moon roof, roof rack, 4.10:1 Differential Gears, Larger brakes, perforated front aluminum skid plate(only on 2002) and Sport edition door badges (only on 2002).

    -These Sport models, when equipped with 4x4, had the Multi-mode transfer case covered earlier. Also, since these models are only offered in 2001-2002, they unfortunately did not have the option of 5-speed, or e-locker.

    Colors:
    The 2001 Sport package was available in Millennium Silver, Imperial Jade Mica Green and Black.
    In 2002, the Sport Edition was additionally available in Thundercloud Metallic Grey, Sunfire Red Pearl, Stellar Blue Pearl and was no longer available in Millennium Silver or Imperial Jade Mica Green.

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
    Photos courtesy of J.A’s Top 4Runners.




    -------------------------------

    LIMITED:

    -The limited is the luxury trim level of 4Runner, it was available all throughout the 3rd gen 4Runner years (1996-2002).

    -Notable features include anti-theft system, leather seats, wood grain trim, moon roof, roof rack, fog lights, side body cladding, running boards, Limited style fender flares, 5-star limited wheels, Larger Brakes, 4.30:1 differential gears, and optional electronic locking Rear differential on models up to 2000.
    -In 1999, Limiteds gained the standard features; Multi Mode 4wd/AWD system, Premium Sound system with 6-CD changer, Automatic Climate Control, Keyless Entry, and Integrated Garage door openers.
    -In 2001, Limiteds gained the standard features; Heated Leather seats, Traction control.
    -The limited did NOT have a hood scoop and was NOT available with a 5-speed manual transmission.

    -The ’99-’00 limited’s with the Rear e-locker and the multi-mode 4x4 transfer case are also VERY desirable 4runners.
    They were the only 4Runners with BOTH of those options.

    Colors:
    The limited was available in a HUGE range of colors; many of them had a 2-tone color scheme as well.



    Lately, many Limited owners have been having issues with the auto climate unit. It is fixable for about $150.
    Resource threads:

    http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-g...-control-your-problems-fixes-experiences.html
    http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-g...l-2001-only-blows-really-hot-really-cold.html

    Y0273112-17sm.jpg


    ---------------------------

    BASE / SR5

    -In 1996, the base 4Runner's standard features included: three-way adjustable fabric bucket seats, cut pile carpeting and fabric headliner, power rear window, tinted glass, deluxe AM/FM ETR radio with four speakers, mist cycle windshield wipers, dual front cup holders, entry/exit assist grips, dual fabric sun visors with passenger vanity mirror, tachometer, trip-meter, oil pressure and voltmeter gauges.

    -The SR5 model of 4runner was just a step above the base version.
    Additional standard features on 4Runner SR5 models are chrome bumpers and grille, dual color-keyed outside mirrors, rear window defogger, power mirrors and door locks, digital clock, lighting package, tilt steering wheel, variable intermittent windshield and fixed intermittent rear window wipers, privacy glass, dual rear cup holder and spring back antenna.

    Almost all upgrade options were available for the base and SR5 models. This includes the slender black SR5 fender flares and wider limited style flares, different types of seats, wheels, interior trim, roof rack, etc..

    Colors:
    The base and SR5 models were available in just about every color Toyota offered.

    Resource: Toyota 4Runner History 1996


    ------------------------------------

    Here is a comprehensive Color chart for all years:
    [​IMG]
    Chart courtesy of Toyota Reference.


    A 1999 Brochure
    IMG_0003_eb0472f06d2384be7440cab323bf8f07e7aee7ab.jpg
    Chart courtesy of RonMAIDEN.
     
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2015
  5. Jun 2, 2015 at 4:42 AM
    #5
    Ripcord

    Ripcord [OP] New Member

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    With all of the upgrades and changes that the 4runner received in 1999 and 2001, there are effectively three sub-generations of 3rd gen 4runner; the ’96-’98 and '99-'00 and '01-'02.

    Resource Thread:
    http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-gen-t4rs/44297-99-mid-gen-upgrades-w-pics.html
    Written By RonMAIDEN

    ========================================================

    Non-pictured Upgrades

    '98: Redesigned steering wheel, passenger vanity mirror.

    '99+ : Upgrades include front passenger and driver one-touch automatic windows, one-touch automatic open moon roof operation, moon roof controls changed from 2 switches to 1 along with redesigned overhead consoles, Redesigned climate controls, Automatic climate control added for Limited edition, re-arranged rear hatch Badges, new 5 spoke wheels, and a few others I cannot think of right now.

    '00: Redesigned Side mirrors, daytime running lights, Limited-style fender flares replaced Skinny SR5 flares for SR5 and Sport models.

    '01+ : upgrades are mostly electrical. With the addition of the TRAC traction control system, the VSC ‘vehicle stability control’ system being the main additions. Also upgraded on 4x4 models was Multi-mode transfer case that was covered earlier. Also, again redesigned climate controls and a newer 5 spoke wheel design was added.


    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    ‘99+ dash and steering wheel changes.
    The 99+ changes include a relocated clock, deleted slide-out cup holder, redesigned steering wheel (in '98), climate control changed from levers to knobs, Digital Odometer, re-arranged dash status lights, and a new stereo.

    1996-1998 style:
    ('96-'97 steering wheel)
    [​IMG]
    Photo courtesy of J.A’s top 4runners.

    1999-2002 style /w sport edition trim:
    [​IMG]
    Photo courtesy of J.A’s top 4runners.



    ‘99+ Center consoles. They had cup holders.
    1996-1998:
    23252d1260937363-99-center-console-insta_8e62459626b2e296d953679f3a83eb30bf0b7e4e.jpg
    Photo courtesy of JohnsD90.

    1999-2002:
    23253d1260937373-99-center-console-insta_ab41cce398f776528fe4159f038bb5448e11f7c3.jpg
    Photo courtesy of JohnsD90.



    ‘99+ Dual power outlets on the center console. Also one more right above those two for the cigarette lighter, 3 total up front.
    Heather5thBdayandmiscfrompaul077_781f03d0a32c7e9499f0d6877dc3c6d5f30da2e3.jpg
    Photo courtesy of RonMAIDEN.



    ‘99+ Rear storage and power outlet. The power outlet was on all 97+ 4runners. The rear storage has two built-in strap downs in it and came empty, so don’t be surprised when you find it empty.
    Heather5thBdayandmiscfrompaul076_72b204becf49530b06cc3542229cfa16b5423d6f.jpg
    Photo courtesy of RonMAIDEN.




    3 different Grill variations, 99+ headlights, and 99+ fat lip bumpers.

    '96-'98, '99-'00, '01-'02 were the years of the 3 types of grilles.


    Left is '01-'02 style grill with 99+ headlights and 99+ fat lip bumper. Right is '96-'98 style grill with pre-'99 lights and bumper.
    [​IMG]
    Photo courtesy of notrayray.

    99-00 Grill with 99+ headlights and bumper.
    [​IMG]
    Photo courtesy of notrayray.




    ’01-’02 rear tail lights.
    The 01-02 tails (left) are upgraded from the ’96-’00 tails (right). The lights are interchangeable between styles.
    _SPZ1937_88fa215404e8da575476e846a44325257559d986.jpg
    Photo courtesy of JohnsD90.

    ===================================================





    Summary so far:

    1996-1998: Basic, tried and true 4runner. Dependable and capable with great off-road options. (5-speed, e-locker)

    1999-2000: Same great capability and options as the earlier 3rd gens, but with new features! (mid-gen upgrades and Multi-mode for limited's)

    2001-2002: Even more new features. Lost the great off-road options, and replaced them with electronics. (TRAC replaced E-locker, Multi-mode for all)

    .
     
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2015
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  6. Jun 2, 2015 at 4:42 AM
    #6
    Ripcord

    Ripcord [OP] New Member

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    Pricing and Searching (As of early 2012)


    Finding a vehicle at the right price can be one of the hardest parts of the buying process. Here is a rough list of prices based on a general market average.
    Prices may be different in your area- And remember this is just an average, there are always deals to be found.

    < $3k : 1996-1998, Beaten and abused. Poor condition with Very High miles. Salvage title and body/drive-train damage likely.
    $3k-5k: 1996-2000 Base, SR5 or Limited in Fair condition with High-Very high miles (175k+).
    $5k-7k: 1996-2000 SR5, Limited or Sport in Good condition with Mid-High miles (150k+).
    $7k-9k: 1999-2002 SR5, Limited or Sport in Great condition with Medium miles (125k+).
    $9k-10: 1999-2002 Limited or Sport Ed. in Excellent condition with Low-Mid miles (100k+).
    $10k+ 2001-2002 Limited or Sport Ed. in Near Mint condition and with low miles (Under or around 100k)
    There are many other factors that could affect this price, such as non-standard options, aftermarket accessories, future maintenance needed, etc..



    +Where to look?
    -As a general rule of thumb, Craigslist is always the place to start. That is where the best deals will be found.
    -Second to that, you have the classified section on T4R(.org), eBay, AutoTrader, Cars(.com) and countless other sites of that type.
    Beyond that? newspaper classifieds and local dealer inventory.


    +Consolidated searches
    -Autotempest - Search Craigslist, eBay, AutoTrader, Cars(.com), Oodle, Cars Direct, and many more sites with just one search form.
    -Themccumbers - Search Craigslist by state. There are many craigslist search engines, this is just the one I prefer.


    +Maintenance Records Research
    It is very important to know the maintenance history of your potential purchase. If the seller does not provide a carfax or similar report, there are ways to get one as long as you have the VIN. Carfax costs money, instead try this service from toyota:
    - Toyota Owners - Official Toyota Owners Website


    =============================================
    =============================================




    4Runner Wheel Variations


    16” -Limited star shaped 5 spoke. Often referred to as the “5 star”.
    Standard on 99-00 Limited and sport models, and 01-02 4wd SR5 models.

    [​IMG]

    ----------------------------


    16” –‘01-‘02 Sport/Limited wheel.
    Often referred to as the '5 spoke "Coke Bottle" wheel.
    Standard on 01-02 limited and sport models.




    ----------------------------

    16” or 15" –Split 6 spoke wheels
    Referred to as the 6 spoke or split 3 spoke.
    Standard on 4wd Base models from 1996-2002, 4wd SR5 models 96-00, 2wd SR5 models from 96-02, and Limiteds from 96-98.

    [​IMG]
    Photo courtesy of MillerPKA.


    .
     
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2015
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  7. Jun 2, 2015 at 4:42 AM
    #7
    Ripcord

    Ripcord [OP] New Member

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    Tune ups

    It is always a good idea to tune up a newly acquired used vehicle.

    As I mentioned in the first post; a stock well maintained 4runner will average 18/20+ (city/hwy) MPGs. If you are seeing numbers below that, there are lots of things you can do to fix it!

    To start, take a look at this thread: http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-gen-t4rs/69744-tutorial-documentation-reference.html
    It contains lots of write-ups on maintenance related tasks.


    Check Engine codes:
    The first step to addressing poor mileage is to make sure you dont have any parts that you know are not working properly. Any codes that have anything to do with the intake, engine, exhaust, and drivetrain can cause bad mileage.

    Here is a database of all Toyota Engine codes: Toyota OBD-II Trouble Codes
    You can get your codes read at most auto parts stores for free..

    -----------------------------------------

    Reset EFI relay:
    When you buy a used vehicle, you want to reset the EFI relay. Its a trade secret among used auto dealers. The reason for this is the EFI map that the vehicle has set to work with its past driver. When you reset this map, the vehicle forgets how the old driver used to drive and learns how you drive. It picks up on how you accelerate, how you cruise, etc and maps the fuel injection to follow. It takes about 1 tank of gas for it to establish a new EFI map. Doing this will not always net an MPG gain, but it will make the vehicle feel more peppy. Even if you don't reset the EFI relay, the vehicle is always adjusting it's EFI map and will eventually get used to you, but resetting it is a lot more effective.

    It is also smart to do this whenever you significantly change anything in the drivetrain, such as a new filter, cleaning intake components, add cold air intake, bigger tires, exhaust system, etc..

    To do this, find the largest of the EFI relays in the fuse block on the drivers side of the engine bay. With the battery still connected, remove this relay for 30 minutes then re-install. Done.

    -------------------------------

    Air Filter:
    The easiest way to see some increased MPGs is to replace the Air filter. A clogged air filter can cause significant power and efficiency losses. When you go to decide which one to buy, do your research. Oiled vs Dry filters is the main point you want to look at. The best brands for air filters are OEM (toyota), TRD, aFe, Amsoil, and K&N.

    ----------------------------------------------------

    Clean MAF/ TB:
    Another quick and easy way to see improved MPGs is to clean the Throttle Body and Mass Air Flow Sensor. This should be done every oil change. These components are known to collect some gunk on them and not work as well as they should. Mainly the throttle body and the carbon it attracts. A dirty MAF/TB is known to affect MPGs by as much as 25%.
    4Runners.org - Cleaning Your Throttle Body and MAF


    ----------------------------------------------------------------

    SeaFoam:
    Seafoam is a pure petroleum product that cleans injectors, valves, and nearly every part of an internal combustion engine. You put seafoam in the crankcase a few hundred miles before an oil change. You also use it in the gas tank and spray it into the intake plenum to clean the combustion side of the engine. After a treatment, the engine is cleared of all of the carbon build-up on the internals of the engine. Despite what the seafoam website says, this process is known to sometimes clear out enough gunk to foul O2 sensors and spark plugs, so be prepared to replace those units. (Do seafoam treatment as on of the 1st steps in a tune up).
    Sea Foam | Motor Treatment | General Content - Motor Treatment
    http://www.toyota-4runner.org/maintenance/52971-seafoam.html
    http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-gen-t4rs/83156-youve-been-doing-wrong-seafoam-injection-port.html
    The process is accompanied by an entertaining cloud of smoke for a few mintues, youtube it.

    -----------------------------------------------------

    PCV Valve:
    Or "Positive Crankcase Ventilation Valve" vents excess pressure inside the crackcase and allows for less resistance in the operation of the motor.

    PCV Valves go bad every 5 years or so. A bad one can cause a 2-3 mpg loss.

    Replacing takes literally 5 minutes, pull the old one from the top of the engine then use some pliers and remove the gromet. Replace in reverse order and go. You should reset your EFI while doing this for best results.

    Part Numbers:
    PCV Valve: 12204-62010
    PCV Grommet: 90480-18001
    Less than $15 total from the dealership.

    http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-gen-t4rs/134924-pcv-valve.html
    http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-gen-t4rs/116806-pcv-valve-replacment.html


    -----------------------------------------------------

    O2 Sensor:
    The most common reason people see really bad MPGs (<15mpg) is due to a faulty upstream O2 sensor. Most of the time it will throw a code if its bad, but sometimes it won't..
    You can find your O2 sensor's part number here:
    Oxygen / AFR Sensors - Underdog Racing Development

    And get your part from Amazon for the best prices.

    ----------------------------------------------------------

    Spark Plugs & Wires:
    With 4runners, you can't just buy any plug that "fits". The only plugs that work on the 3.4L v6 engines are Dual ground plugs.

    You will want to only use these plugs, any of these will do:
    NGK BKR5EKB-11
    OEM Toyota #90919-01192 Made by Denso
    Denso #K16TR11

    For the Wires, you can either get the Bosch 09444 or you can get the NGK 4412. Both sets are identical except for the NGK wires are blue on the outside, adds a nice touch if you like that kind of flair.
    Here is a write-up on changing the plugs: 4Runners.org - Changing Your Spark Plugs

    -------------------------------------------------------------

    Oil Change:
    An oil and filter change is always a good thing! You want 5W-30 Motor oil and a new filter. OEM Toyota is commonly regarded as the BEST filter, the part number is 90915-YZZD1.
    4Runners.org - Changing Your Oil

    ------------------------------------------------------------------

    Fuel Filter:
    Although Toyota says the Fuel filter is a "lifetime part", it really isn't. After 100k miles it gets pretty gunked up. Don't make the truck work so hard to feed itself, replace that filter!
    Part number: 23300‑62030
    5VZ V6 4runner fuel filter write up with pics


    -------------------------------------------------------------

    Monitor Driving habits:
    Driving habits can have a huge effect on mileage. When you use a device that enables you to see average and instantaneous fuel mileage, you can increase fuel economy by simply driving more efficiently. Average mileage is simply total distance driven divided by gallons used. Instantaneous mileage is what your fuel economy is RIGHT THIS SECOND! For example, accelerating will display about 5 mpgs on the screen, while coasting can give 50+ mpgs. It all averages out though, so seeing instantaneous mileage and knowing how to coast more and accelerate less will net higher average fuel economy.

    There are a few devices us 4runner guys use to monitor MPGs..
    All of these can read mpgs, display most engine temps and other readings, read & clear engine codes, etc..
    Scangauge II - $160 - Most low profile, most popular, endless mounting options, It CAN display trans temp, displays 4 pieces of info at a time, performance features.
    UltraGauge - $70 - Best looking, CANNOT display trans temp, displays up to 6 pieces of info at a time, more customizable.
    Aeroforce Interceptor - $250 - Mounts in any standard gauge pod, CAN display trans temp, looks neat.
    *Trans temp can only be displayed on 99-02 4runner, the 96-98 cannot display trans temp no matter which unit you choose.

    More info: http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-g...ltra-gauge-first-impressions.html#post1024752, http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-g...id-you-mount-your-scangauge-pics-request.html, http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-gen-t4rs/95258-scan-gauge-ii-codes-new-stuff.html.

    -------------------------------------------------------------------

    Lube Driveshaft:
    A well oiled machine includes a well lubed driveshaft. Recommended every few oil changes.
    4Runners.org - Lubing Your Driveshaft

    -------------------------------------------------------------------

    The MYTH about throttle body spacers!
    Many people think adding a throttle body spacer will increase power, well it doesn't. These come from the days of Carburetors, where the spacer changed the dynamics of how the Carburetor operated. However, these DO NOT WORK ON FUEL INJECTED ENGINES! Many people have dyno tested and found the spacers do absolutely nothing.
    You can google many instances where this has been recorded.

    So please, do not waste $100 on a useless piece of metal.

    -------------------------------------------------------------------

    The MYTH about performance chips!
    Many people think adding a performance tuning chip will increase power and mileage, well it doesn't. These come from the world of forced induction, big time engine mods and diesel engines, where the chips change intake timing, fuel trim, etc to get the engine to have the right air/fuel ratio throughout the power band. However, these DO NOT WORK ON STOCK, NATURALLY ASPIRATED ENGINES! the stock fuel trim is already set up to optimize power and mileage. Changing anything just takes away from those things.
    You can google many instances where this has been recorded.

    So please, do not waste $100+ on a useless piece of plastic.





    ===========================================
    ===========================================


    Basic Starter Mods




    LED Interior conversion.

    Many drivers don't like the green color of the interior lights, that can be fixed. The lights behind the dash, center console, key ring, map lights, and dome lights can all be changed

    Here is one excellent example:
    clockcolor015_df8faf15aed4544af5767bd50d21d59b22f48a2f.jpg
    Photo courtesy of GottaBeTRD.

    http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-gen-t4rs/78310-led-conversion-questions-2.html#post870257
    http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-gen-t4rs/35104-led-lighting.html
    http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-gen-t4rs/79771-you-can-change-color-your-clock-2.html

    LEDChart_zps5ff5a07b_193003d35d8bd689265352c04c9e4b53e14ec5ac.jpg




    ==========================================================




    -Deckplate:
    The Deckplate mod uses a 4 inch hole in the air box, before the filter of course. You fill in the hole with a Marine Deckplate. When the cap to the Deckplate is on, it re-seals the air box to stock conditions. When the cap is off, it opens the air box to allow air a more unrestricted route to the intake. While performance gains are minimal at best, the intake sound is slightly louder and the throttle response is quicker. Many users noticed slightly increase fuel economy.
    The Deckplate Mod - YotaTech Forums
    This mod takes about 30 minutes to complete and costs about $10.



    -Intake Silencer Removal (ISR):
    In line with the air filter and engine intake is a resonating silencing chamber. This silences the intake noise and creates resistance for air flow in the intake system. By removing the resonator and replacing it with a strait pipe, you decrease air flow resistance and increase throttle response and intake efficiency even more. Intake noise is also increased quite a bit.

    Note: When I say the ISR increases intake noise, I AM SERIOUS. Many people find it to be too loud and annoying. But if that is what you want, go for it.

    This mod also takes less than 30 minutes and costs less than $20.

    1996-2001 4Runner ISR
    2002 4Runner ISR
    (The intake plenum is a little different on the 2002’s)

    When both of these mods are combined, it is similar to the effects of a Cold Air Intake system, but with the advantage that you can reseal the intake with the deckplate if you encounter water crossings and such.
    You also get faster throttle response and a very beefy throttle noise .

    89415793_photobucket_35351__288af43a9bea1c34ac835c13540163a7a30bc949.jpg
    Photo courtesy of 4-Ripcord.



    ----------------------------------------


    -Cup Holder Mod:
    As discussed earlier, the center consoles on the earlier 3rd gens didn’t have cup holders. A console swap is an easy fix to this.
    Cup Holder Mod - Center Console Upgrade


    ------------------------------------------

    -Rear Differential Breather Mod.
    A breather plug on the differential is necessary to accommodate changes in pressure due to temperature and altitude. If, however, you were to drive through a river and get water in the diff through the plug, that could be bad. So to avoid this you need to extend the breather plug up higher on the vehicle. The front diff and transfer case already have extended breathers from the factory, but for some reason the rear axle does not.
    Rear Differential Breather Mod - YotaTech Forums
    This mod also takes less than 30 minutes and costs less than $20.


    ---------------------------------------------


    - Plasti-Dip Emblems/Trim/Wheels:
    Plasti-Dip is a rubberized coating that sprays on like regular spray paint, but it can be peeled right back off when it dries. To plasti-dip your emblems, just mask off an area around the emblem, spray the whole area, then peel the paint off from the body as it cuts off at the emblems and leaves them black.
    DIY - Matte Black Emblems - Plastidip, no emblem removal required! - Club Lexus Forums
    http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-gen-t4rs/70624-howd-you-do-blackout-your-emblems.html
    http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-gen-t4rs/83336-plasti-dipped.html

    IMG_0004-2_affef8c363ecb8a5ae56b72d74c7ed63ab45546e.jpg
    Photo courtesy of 4-Ripcord.


    ===================================================

    Biggest tire with 'stock' suspension?

    Stock: 31" (265/70-R16)

    32": 265/75-R16 OR 265/70-R17
    Any larger sized tires requires trimming and/or a suspension lift.

    It is "possible" to fit even a 35" tire to stock suspension, but it will require EXTENSIVE trimming and fender/firewall tubing.


    Here is a Tire size calculator to determine how far off the speedometer will be with new tires. Tire Size Calculator - Compare Tire Sizes





    ============================================================

    ============================================================

    ============================================================




    TRD Supercharger:

    One highly sought after option for these trucks is the TRD Supercharger!
    There are 2 different versions of the TRD supercharger for the 3.4L V6.

    -It is important to note that this was a dealer option, meaning that you could not order a 4runner from the factory with the TRD supercharger in any option package. You just had to buy one after you got the 4runner and the dealer installed it.

    Both the 1st and 2nd gen superchargers are M62 superchargers made by Magnuson and produce the exact same power increases. The only differences between them are appearances and ease of maintenance. The first page I would recommend you read is this one: TRD Supercharger Here, gadget (who is a pioneer of TRD superchargers and performance modifications) explains what superchargers are, how they work, and the differences between the 2 generations.

    The 1st Generation TRD supercharger.
    [​IMG]
    Courtesy of Gadget .

    The 2nd (aka 4th) Generation TRD supercharger.
    [​IMG]
    Courtesy of Gadget .


    Basic specs:

    Gains with only supercharger (no fuel mods)
    Courtesy of Ultimate Yota.


    ---------

    Known Issues:

    There are a few documented issues with the superchargers. Most of which arise due to lack of supporting fuel mods.
    An in-depth list can be found here: UltimateYota.com

    Things such as high gear/low rpms pinging, high rpm lean out, automatic transmission wear.

    These symptoms are cured with URD's 7th injector kit. It helps to supply extra fuel when needed when the stock system cannot keep up with how much air is being pumped in. The tuning computer and two-step cooler spark plugs included with the kit helps by ret@rding timing more than the stock computer is capable of doing. This kit also adds top end power becuase it helps to meet this needs.
    Underdog Racing Development


    If you do not feel a need for this extra injector and tuning computer, at least get two-step cooler spark plugs to help with proper timing.
    Denso Iridium IK22 are the ones you want.

    -------------------

    Issues that are not covered there are as follows:

    Belt slippage
    There are two types of Tensioners that come with the TRD superchargers, they are interchangeable. with the old-style static tensioner you can experience belt slippage when you really step on the pedal.

    -The Static tensioner is just a plate with a pulley on it, you manage the belt tension with the alternator tensioner bolt.

    -The Dynamic tensioner is a spring loaded arm with a pulley on it that takes care of the belt tension itself.

    The dynamic tensioner can by found for around $280, the part number is: PTR29-60032.


    ---

    Supercharger wear

    The bearings in the nose cone of the supercharger are only rated to last about 100k miles. This is one area where the 2nd gen supercharger really shows its advantages.

    -The 1st gen unit must be taken off and either sent in to Magnuson to be rebuilt (usually $500+) or rebuilt at home if you have the right tools. DIY rebuilds can be done for around $200 with a lot of elbow grease.

    Here is a detailed thread of a full rebuild of a first gen unit by Chris360hawks: http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-g...-top-eaton-m62-complete-rebuild-write-up.html
    Here is a thread where member Coinball rebuilt his 1st gen unit: http://www.toyota-4runner.org/3rd-gen-t4rs/119634-project-put-blower-my-hoopty-go.html


    -The 2nd (4th) gen unit can be rebuilt in your garage while its still on the vehicle. To do so you need the TRD Nose cone kit (PN: PTR29-35042) it comes with a new nose cone with the bearing already pressed in and a bottle of new supercharger oil and some gasket sealant.

    Here is a thread that really shows how that is done: 3.4 Supercharger Nose-Drive Replacement - CustomTacos.com Forum


    -------

    Broken Bypass valves

    The bypass valves on the 2nd gen units are known to fail and/or break the rivets off. Also the rubber inside them can dryout and crack which leads to boost leakage.
    Replacements are under $100.

    Available through LCE performance: Supercharger Accessories - 5VZ TRD Bypass Valve



    ============================================================


    Supercharger Performance upgrades

    Smaller Pulley
    URD sells an assortment of smaller sized pullies. It is recommended that you have sufficient fuel modifications to support the increased amount of air being pumped in by smaller pullies. Underdog Racing Development

    -Stock is 2.37" and the truck runs at about 7 psi

    -URD 2.2" increases max boost by 1.5-2 psi over stock. This is the most common pulley to add.

    -URD 2.1" increases max boost by 3.5-4 psi over stock. Tuning is highly recommended with a pulley this small.

    *Note that the supercharger is known to handle about 15 max, so be careful.

    -----

    Methanol Injection:

    Some users choose to add methanol injection instead of or in addition to extra fuel injectors. Methanol injection changes the A/F ratio at high throttle to increase power.

    Here is the main thread Methanol users go to start out:
    Texas_Ace's Cheap DIY Meth/Water Injection kit Writeup! Get 10hp+ for under $150! - YotaTech Forums

    Pros:
    -inexpensive
    -Fairly simple to install

    Cons:
    -Have to refill methanol tank occasionally
    -In-Depth Tuning is pretty much required

    -----

    Cooler thermostat
    The stock thermostat is rated at 180* F and keeps the engine around 193-195*. However, The stock thermostat is known to be unable to keep the engine in the optimum range of temperatures with a supercharger. With a supercharger, you will notice temps above 200* very often.

    Stant 14077 is a 170* thermostat and will maintain a cool engine despite whatever high performance runs you are doing on the supercharger. With a supercharger, expect to see temps of 185-190*

    The TRD thermostat is a 160* and many people recommend running this ONLY if you do a very accurate tune and are trying for maximum performance. Be cautious with this one. You will often see the engine running around 175-180*.

    -------

    Performance Headers

    headers are the manifolds that handle the exhaust gasses from the engine. The stock headers are not known to be very efficient. Performance headers can increase power by approximately 10-15hp.

    Brands of performance headers for these vehicles are:
    -TRD
    -Doug Thorley
    -OBX


    -----

    High Flow Exhaust


    Any high flow muffler is a good idea to match the increased volume of air going through the engine. It is also beneficial to add a high flow Catalytic converter, although doing this will trigger an O2 sensor code. So if you decide on a high flow CAT, also look into the URD rear O2 sim kit. It will prevent the code.

    Underdog Racing Development


    More info coming soon..
    --------------------------
     
  8. Jun 2, 2015 at 7:46 AM
    #8
    Ol'Blue

    Ol'Blue Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
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    Messages:
    1,378
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    Male
    "Not all who wander are lost"
    Vehicle:
    99 T4R LTD- 33's and locked, 01 SR5-,SAS Sold...
    A few things here and there. Still dreaming up stuff
    Oh Rip how we 3rd Gen owners lovers love you so. This write up is how I came to the conclusion on a 99 limited when I was looking about 3 years ago and how this is all broke down. Now I'm the proud owner on two of them. See what you did. Thanks for putting this up for everyone else and for the hard work and gathering all the info buddy.

    Blue

    PS- Welcome back to the family once again. The new rig is looking good can't wait to see where you go with this one.
     
    Ripcord [OP] likes this.
  9. Jun 2, 2015 at 7:55 AM
    #9
    Jas

    Jas New Member

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    Female
    First Name:
    Jasmine
    Vehicle:
    99 4runner Limited
    Thanks for this!

    Just picked up a 99 Limited last night and this was posted here today. I'd like to think it's a good omen.
     
  10. Jun 2, 2015 at 8:04 AM
    #10
    Ol'Blue

    Ol'Blue Moderator Staff Member

    Joined:
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    Member:
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    1,378
    Gender:
    Male
    "Not all who wander are lost"
    Vehicle:
    99 T4R LTD- 33's and locked, 01 SR5-,SAS Sold...
    A few things here and there. Still dreaming up stuff
    Once you really understand the 99 Limited you will love it even more. IMO it is one of the best 3rd Gens built and many would agree with me on that also. The Multi Mode is SO NICE! And if you have the Locker even better. Welcome to the site. I'm glad there are more women filtering in.

    Blue
     
    4Runnernut and Jas like this.
  11. Jun 2, 2015 at 8:11 AM
    #11
    Jas

    Jas New Member

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    Gender:
    Female
    First Name:
    Jasmine
    Vehicle:
    99 4runner Limited
    I'm a big fan already! No locker, 2wd, but it's a DD for me. There's already an LT second gen Tacoma in the family. I'm a transplant from Tacomaworld actually.
     
    Ol'Blue likes this.
  12. Jun 2, 2015 at 9:02 AM
    #12
    Ripcord

    Ripcord [OP] New Member

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    Jim
    Columbus, OH
    Always nice to know people are using the guide. I hope it is as useful here as it is on T4R
     
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2015
    Jas likes this.
  13. Jul 31, 2015 at 5:31 PM
    #13
    indawire

    indawire New Member

    Joined:
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    22
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    Southwest Ct
    Vehicle:
    2000 SR5, 4wd, 5sp
    stock
    Well, I'm reading it from end to end before I make a decision on the 2000 SR5 I'm looking at. Thanks for posting It should save my bacon.
     
    Bob likes this.
  14. Sep 27, 2015 at 7:15 PM
    #14
    srgray15

    srgray15 Routt County 4Runner

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    Put a deposit on a 99 Limited today!! Will complete the purchase in 2 weeks!! Know I will need to do some brake work on it but everything else looks great! Are there any known issues of one overheating after having not been ran for a bit?
     
  15. Nov 14, 2015 at 10:09 AM
    #15
    UssMoGn

    UssMoGn That Vegas Dude

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    James
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    1996 TaCoRunner
    Extented Coil Lift. Custom bumpers
    Can someone sticky this?
     
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  16. Sep 9, 2017 at 5:07 PM
    #16
    kf4aqo

    kf4aqo New Member

    Joined:
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    James
    near Athens, GA
    Vehicle:
    2000 4Runner
    I really appreciate the time and effort that went into putting this guide together. I'll be referring to it a lot.
     
  17. Feb 14, 2018 at 10:47 PM
    #17
    AZHoosier

    AZHoosier New Member

    Joined:
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    Jason
    Peoria, AZ
    Vehicle:
    '97 Toyota 4Runner SR5, 122k Miles, Rust-Free & All Original
    None... yet :)
    An evening very well spent.. learning more about my '97. Thank you for this writeup!! Time for me to start working through the list of issues and maint items.
     

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