Toyota Tacoma Problems and Common Complaints

With impressive off-road capability and legendary durability, it’s no surprise that the Toyota Tacoma is one of Toyota’s best-selling vehicles. Still, like any other vehicle, the compact pickup isn’t entirely free of faults. Read on to find out what they are.

Note: The list of problems below is organized by vehicle generation. Scroll down to find your model range.

2005-2015 Tacoma - Common Problems

Tacoma problems

Premature Clutch Wear: Symptoms include hesitation before accelerating and jerking during gear shifts. This is a common problem because many Tacoma owners allow the fluid in the master cylinder to get too low, causing air to get into the Tacoma’s hydraulic clutch system. This messes up the pressure applied to the clutch system, leading to premature clutch wear.

Frame Rust: As with first-gen Tacomas, this problem is prevalent in second-gen Tacomas. Toyota carried over the first-gen frame design, which allowed moisture to get into the frame and cause rust and corrosion from the inside out. In late 2016, Toyota agreed to pay $3.4 billion to help 2005-2010 Tacoma owners fix this issue.

Radio Turning Off by Itself: The radio turning off at random times (or when going over a bump) is a common issue experienced by Tacoma owners. Toyota addressed it by replacing the radio free of charge for Tacomas still under warranty. Anyone who owns a Tacoma no longer under warranty can buy an OEM replacement head unit from Olathe Toyota Parts Center at a discounted price though (Part No. 86120-04160).

Broken Rear Leaf Springs: This problem also rears its head in first-gen Tacomas, but it’s much more prevalent in second-gen Tacomas. This happens because the leaf springs aren’t properly equipped to handle the towing capacity outlined in the owner’s manual and will crack, flatten, or break under too much weight. Toyota addressed this issue in 2007 by releasing a TSB stating that they’d replace the springs on any second-gen Tacoma still under warranty.

Throttle Position Sensor Failure: This is attributed to premature wear on the throttle position sensor, which causes it to not advance the timing properly. A number of second-gen Tacoma owners learned the hard way that often times carbon build-up or wear on the throttle body causes the throttle position sensor to fall out of adjustment and wear out faster. They’d experience sudden unintended acceleration, lack of power, and poor fuel economy.

1995-2004 Tacoma - Common Problems

First gen tacoma problems

Frame Rust: The frames in first-generation Tacomas are constructed in a way that allows moisture to get inside and rust out a large portion of the frame. Many first-gen Tacoma owners reported having found severe rust and corrosion on their undercarriages. In 2008, Toyota responded to this widespread problem by expanding its rust perforation warranty on ’95-’00 Tacomas and applying undercoating on affected trucks free of charge.

Broken Tabs in the Glove Box: A rattling noise coming from the passenger side area is a sound with which many first-gen Tacoma owners are familiar. This noise is the result of two rubber tabs breaking off during factory installation, causing a loose fit that makes the back and top of the glove box rattle against the lower dash area. Replacing the glove box with the redesigned OEM glove box (for newer Tacomas) should do the trick.

Lower Ball Joint Failure: Because of improper finishing during production, the lower ball joints in first-gen Tacomas are prone to sudden failure. Some owners were lucky enough to feel a difference in steering and/or hear a humming sound coming from underneath their trucks right before their ball joints snapped off. For others, it happened without warning. In 2005, Toyota issued a recall on the lower ball joint for ’01-’04 Tacomas and installed new ones correctly to prevent premature wear.

If you’re experiencing another issue with your Tacoma that isn’t listed here, feel free to email us or give us a call. Our knowledgeable staff will be more than happy to help you find the replacement parts you need!

Toyota Tacoma TSBs - 1997 to 2017

To find these TSBs, you can try Googling the TSB ID #, the name of the TSB, or some combination. You can also go to https://www.safercar.gov and search for the TSB by entering your VIN.

YEAR MAKE MODEL TSB NAME TSB ID ISSUE DATE
2016-2017 Toyota Tacoma Howling or Whistle Noise from Front Lower Control Arms 197837 1/31/2017
2016-2017 Toyota Tacoma High Pitch Whine Noise from Manual Transmission 198235 2/17/2017
2014-2015 Toyota Tacoma Vehicles Accessories May Detach 188151 12/30/2014
2013-2014 Toyota Tacoma Certain 2013-2014 Model Year Tacoma Vehicles Equipped with a 4-Cylinder Engine (2TR-FE) Valve Spring Replacement 182298 11/7/2013
2012-2015 Toyota Tacoma Wind (Reed/Buzz) Noise From Front Doors - Cross- Wind Conditions 197533 12/2/2016
2012-2014 Toyota Tacoma Shudder on Deceleration After a Cold Soak 184497 4/10/2014
2012-2014 Toyota Tacoma MIL "ON" DTC - P015A-D A/F Sensor (1GR-FE) 186155 8/27/2014
2012-2014 Toyota Tacoma Spark Knock Noise 186992 10/14/2014
2012-2014 Toyota Tacoma 2012-14 Tacoma Parasitic Draw SET Accessory Fog Lights 193096 2/22/2015
2012-2013 Toyota Tacoma Grille Wind Whistle Noise 181289 9/23/2013
2012-2013 Toyota Tacoma Brake Actuator Assembly may Disable ESC and ABS 183796 2/12/2014
2012-2013 Toyota Tacoma Abnormal Entune/Navigation Operation For Display Audio (Non-HDD Type) 195716 8/1/2016
2011-2014 Toyota Tacoma Roof Drip Molding Loose 190621 7/14/2015
2011-2012 Toyota Tacoma Rear Brake Drum Squeak 177710 12/6/2012
2010-2013 Toyota Tacoma Windshield Dam Is Loose/Visible 179733 5/23/2013
2010-2012 Toyota Tacoma Audio Distortion 178520 2/26/2013
2010-2011 Toyota Tacoma Trailer Brakes Will Not Release While Vehicle Is in Reverse 169612 5/5/2011
2009-2012 Toyota Tacoma Windshield Wind Noise 174192 4/16/2012
2009-2011 Toyota Tacoma Rear Spring Harsh Ride 167741 12/21/2010
2009-2010 Toyota Tacoma Transmission Fluid Leak through Driveshaft Yoke 157572 3/10/2010
2008-2011 Toyota Tacoma Roof Drip Molding Lifting At Rear Edge 170370 7/22/2011
2008-2010 Toyota Tacoma Rear Chrome Bumper Rust 169902 6/24/2011
2008-2009 Toyota Tacoma MIL ON DTC P011B with Block Heater Installed on 2TR-FE Engine 151938 9/3/2009
2007-2010 Toyota Tacoma Defroster Air Volume 166319 8/4/2010
2007-2010 Toyota Tacoma MIL "ON" DTC P011B with Block Heater Installed on 2TR-FE Engine 172486 12/22/2011
2007-2008 Toyota Tacoma DECREASE AIR VOLUME FROM HVAC VENTS 147805 2/26/2009
2005-2015 Toyota Tacoma Front Differential Groaning/Grinding Cyclical Noise 189794 5/20/2015
2005-2014 Toyota Tacoma Driveline Vibration 185600 7/28/2014
2005-2013 Toyota Tacoma Driveline Vibration Between 15 - 25 MPH 177719 12/21/2012
2005-2013 Toyota Tacoma 4WD Rear Propeller Shaft (Driveshaft) Clunk/Thunk Noise 186203 2/1/2013
2005-2013 Toyota Tacoma 2WD Rear Propeller Shaft (Driveshaft) Clunk/Thunk Noise 186213 8/8/2014
2005-2012 Toyota Tacoma Steering Intermediate Shaft Rattle Noise 173780 3/23/2012
2005-2012 Toyota Tacoma Automatic Disconnecting Differential (A.D.D.) Shift Actuator Inoperative 174188 4/25/2012
2005-2012 Toyota Tacoma Cowl Water Leak 174193 4/6/2012
2005-2012 Toyota Tacoma Clutch Pedal Slow to Return 176029 8/6/2012
2005-2012 Toyota Tacoma Rust Stain Below Outside Door Handle 176339 9/20/2012
2005-2012 Toyota Tacoma Clutch Pedal Squeak/Creak Noise 176901 10/3/2012
2005-2011 Toyota Tacoma 6-Speed Manual Clutch Release Bearing Squeak or Rattle Noise 167737 12/22/2010
2005-2011 Toyota Tacoma 5-Speed Manual Transmission Clutch Difficult Engaging 169904 6/28/2011
2005-2011 Toyota Tacoma 5-Speed Manual Transmission Rattle Noise in Neutral 170766 8/19/2011
2005-2011 Toyota Tacoma Rear Suspension Squeak Noise 170769 8/26/2011
2005-2011 Toyota Tacoma Headlamp Assembly Appearance Concern 171374 9/7/2011
2005-2011 Toyota Tacoma HVAC Blower Motor Only Operates On High 171900 10/5/2011
2005-2011 Toyota Tacoma Abnormal Blower Motor Noise 171911 10/20/2011
2005-2011 Toyota Tacoma Leaf Spring may Fracture and Puncture Tank 187105 9/29/2014
2005-2010 Toyota Tacoma BLOWER MOTOR SQUEAL NOISE AT LOW AMBIENT TEMPERATURE 153734 11/10/2009
2005-2010 Toyota Tacoma Instrument Panel Rattle Near Glove Box 157571 3/10/2010
2005-2010 Toyota Tacoma Blower Motor Tick/Click Noise 157574 3/15/2010
2005-2010 Toyota Tacoma Steering Intermediate Shaft Rattle Noise 161959 5/3/2010
2005-2010 Toyota Tacoma Rear Window Water Leak 161963 5/20/2010
2005-2009 Toyota Tacoma OVERHEAD DIGITAL COMPASS & TEMPERATURE DISPLAY INOPERATIVE 147239 1/22/2009
2005-2009 Toyota Tacoma TORQUE CONVERTER FLEX LOCKUP SHUDDER - REVISED 148144 3/20/2009
2005-2009 Toyota Tacoma A750E Transmission Extension Housing Seal Service Tip 150811 6/11/2009
2005-2009 Toyota Tacoma REAR SUSPENSION SQUEAK NOISE 151212 8/13/2009
2005-2009 Toyota Tacoma MIL ON DTC P0705 151214 8/18/2009
2005-2009 Toyota Tacoma Instrument Panel Rattle Below Glove Box 159489 4/13/2010
2005-2008 Toyota Tacoma BENT REAR TAIL GATE 140067 11/13/2007
2005-2008 Toyota Tacoma HVAC CONDENSER LINE BOLTS 142860 5/22/2008
2005-2008 Toyota Tacoma REAR DIFFERENTIAL WHINE OR HOWLING NOISE AT HIGHWAY SPEEDS - REVISED 142864 5/29/2008
2005-2008 Toyota Tacoma DRIVELINE VIBRATION BETWEEN 15 - 25 MPH 143854 7/11/2008
2005-2008 Toyota Tacoma OIL LEAK FROM FRONT TIMING COVER - REVISED 145522 10/24/2008
2005-2008 Toyota Tacoma REAR SPRING HARSH RIDE - REVISED 147244 1/12/2009
2005-2007 Toyota Tacoma BENT REAR TAIL GATE 137631 4/30/2007
2005-2007 Toyota Tacoma CRANKSHAFT OIL SEAL LEAK 137637 5/10/2007
2005-2007 Toyota Tacoma 1GR-FE ENGINE INTERMITTENT "NO START" CONDITION - REVISED 138657 7/10/2007
2005-2007 Toyota Tacoma DOOR SIDE PANEL RATTLE 138665 7/2/2007
2005-2007 Toyota Tacoma WINDSHIELD WIND NOISE - REVISED 139057 8/29/2007
2005-2007 Toyota Tacoma FRONT BRAKE NOISE IN REVERSE - REVISED 139333 9/12/2007
2005-2007 Toyota Tacoma AIR INTAKE HOSE RATTLE - REVISED 139693 10/24/2007
2005-2007 Toyota Tacoma WIND NOISE FROM ACCESS CAB 140086 11/29/2007
2005-2007 Toyota Tacoma REAR SUSPENSION SQUEAK NOISE 140359 12/8/2007
2005-2007 Toyota Tacoma WATER CONDENSATION DRIPPING FROM HEADLINER 146475 12/17/2008
2005-2007 Toyota Tacoma Deck Side Panel Rattle 172382 11/28/2011
2005-2006 Toyota Tacoma MIL ON DTC P0171, P0174, P2195, OR P2197 130963 11/16/2005
2005-2006 Toyota Tacoma DEFORMED WINDOW RUNS 131768 1/31/2006
2005-2006 Toyota Tacoma FRONT BUMPER EXTENSION NOISE 132096 3/8/2006
2005-2006 Toyota Tacoma EXHAUST TICKING NOISE 132806 4/7/2006
2005-2006 Toyota Tacoma 4WD LOW SHIFTING INOPERATIVE (MTM ONLY) 133809 6/8/2006
2005-2006 Toyota Tacoma CLUTCH PEDAL SQUEAK NOISE 133829 6/14/2006
2005-2006 Toyota Tacoma DRIVER'S SIDE DASH LOWER PANEL POOR FIT 135168 11/2/2006
2004-2009 Toyota Tacoma FRONT SEAT SQUEAK NOISE - REVISED 145108 9/8/2008
2003-2009 Toyota Tacoma UPPER/LOWER WINDSHIELD/REAR GLASS TICK NOISE - REVISED 147810 2/2/2009
2003-2004 Toyota Tacoma INTERMITTENT EXTENDED OR "HARD" CRANKING 125711 9/20/2004
2003-2004 Toyota Tacoma MIL ON, DTC P0136 127834 5/13/2005
2002-2004 Toyota Tacoma TONNEAU COVER FOAM WEDGE KIT 125701 9/23/2004
2001-2002 Toyota Tacoma LOOSE FENDER FLARE PADS 115490 4/19/2002
2001-2002 Toyota Tacoma DRIVER'S SIDE REAR SEAT COVER TORN - DOUBLE CAB 115860 6/7/2002
2001-2002 Toyota Tacoma TUBE STEP NOISE 116113 7/26/2002
2000-2017 Toyota Tacoma Alarm Triggering While Driving 199326 3/23/2017
1998-1999 Toyota Tacoma RADIATOR LEAK FROM OVERFLOW PIPE 47539 11/5/1999
1998-1999 Toyota Tacoma DELAYED UPSHIFT TO O/D WITH CRUISE CONTROL ENGAGED 47592 4/14/2000
1997-2000 Toyota Tacoma EXHAUST MANIFOLD HEAT SHIELD RATTLE NOISE 47503 6/2/2000
1997-2000 Toyota Tacoma BRAKE PAD CLICKING NOISE 112588 10/20/2000
1997-1999 Toyota Tacoma CLUTCH PEDAL SQUEAK 54840 7/23/1999
1997-1998 Toyota Tacoma SNOW ENTRY INTO HEATER UNIT 45007 2/26/1999
1997-1998 Toyota Tacoma EVAP SYSTEM DIAGNOSIS - DTC P0441/P0446 47499 4/3/1998
1997-1998 Toyota Tacoma UPPER & LOWER RADIATOR HOSE CHANGE 47534 7/31/1998
1997-1998 Toyota Tacoma POWER STEERING PRESSURE FEED HOSE CHANGE - 4 CYL 53377 4/17/1998
1997-1998 Toyota Tacoma A34OE/A340F/A343F - "R" TO "P/N" CHATTER 54816 2/13/1998
2016 Toyota Tacoma Blind Spot Monitor DTC C1AB2 or C1AB3 193098 2/18/2016
2016 Toyota Tacoma Difficult to Shift Out of Gear After Long Drives 195309 7/28/2016
2016 Toyota Tacoma Difficult to Shift Out of Gear After Long Drives 196624 10/18/2016
2016 Toyota Tacoma Combination Meter - Trip Meter Intermittently Resets 196625 10/18/2016
2016 Toyota Tacoma Driveline Vibration Under Deceleration Around 10-30 MPH 197532 12/6/2016
2015 Toyota Tacoma MIL "ON" DTC P219A, P219B, P219C, P219D, P219E, P219F, P21A0, and/or P21A1 191060 8/11/2015
2015 Toyota Tacoma MIL ON DTC P011B 192023 11/13/2015
2014 Toyota Tacoma Blower Motor Only Operates on High Speed 184496 4/15/2014
2013 Toyota Tacoma BODY SECTIONING 185810 2/1/2013
2013 Toyota Tacoma FULL FRAME REPAIR & COMPONENT REPLACEMENT 185817 4/1/2013
2013 Toyota Tacoma BODY & FRAME COMPONENT SECTIONING 185878 9/1/2013
2012 Toyota Tacoma Grille Wind Whistle Noise 173779 3/26/2012
2012 Toyota Tacoma Abnormal Radio Preset Display 174872 5/4/2012
2012 Toyota Tacoma Addition of iHeartRadio, MovieTickets, and OpenTable to Entune Applications 175163 6/28/2012
2012 Toyota Tacoma SRS Airbag Light "ON" DTC U0151: Lost Communication with Airbag ECU 175360 7/25/2012
2012 Toyota Tacoma 1GR-FE Air Injection Switching Valve Diagnosis 176020 8/28/2012
2010 Toyota Tacoma Clicking Noise from Transfer Case 163804 6/10/2010
2010 Toyota Tacoma Front Exhaust Pipe Catalyst Rattle Noise and/or MIL "ON" DTC P0420 182302 10/31/2013
2009 Toyota Tacoma Abnormal Sound from JBL Subwoofer 149041 5/14/2009
2009 Toyota Tacoma CONDENSATION DRIPPING FROM AROUND DOME LIGHT COVER (ACCESS CAB ONLY) 151207 8/3/2009
2009 Toyota Tacoma BODY ELECTRICAL DIAGNOSIS & REPAIR 185880 1/1/2009
2007 Toyota Tacoma UPPER/LOWER WINDSHIELD TICK NOISE - REVISED 143887 7/29/2008
2006 Toyota Tacoma EXCESSIVE SULFUR ODOR 132305 3/1/2006
2006 Toyota Tacoma TIRE SENSING TRANSMITTER ACTIVATION PROCEDURE 132341 8/26/2005
2006 Toyota Tacoma EVAP SYSTEM PRESSURE TESTER UPGRADE 132377 9/14/2005
2006 Toyota Tacoma MIL ON DTC P0102 132805 4/6/2006
2006 Toyota Tacoma FUEL LINE KNOCKING NOISE 133383 5/11/2006
2006 Toyota Tacoma REAR SPRING HARSH RIDE 138669 7/20/2007
2005 Toyota Tacoma INITIAL CALIBRATION OF COMPASS 125743 8/10/2004
2005 Toyota Tacoma OVERFENDER REFINISH PROCESS 127311 3/9/2005
2005 Toyota Tacoma FAILURE TO INITIALIZE CAN INTERFACE MODULE 127338 3/11/2005
2005 Toyota Tacoma FRONT COWL WATER LEAK REPAIR PROCEDURE - REVISED 127555 4/25/2005
2005 Toyota Tacoma SKID PLATE VIBRATION 128815 7/20/2005
2005 Toyota Tacoma EXCESSIVE SULFUR DIOXIDE ODOR 129518 8/22/2005
2005 Toyota Tacoma MIL ON DTC P0456 OR P0455, AND P0441 - REVISED 130094 9/16/2005
2005 Toyota Tacoma MIL ON DTC P2742 130953 11/8/2005
2005 Toyota Tacoma TRANSMISSION EXTENSION HOUSING SEAL LEAK (2WD ONLY) 131692 1/20/2006
2005 Toyota Tacoma PARASITIC DRAW FROM JBL AMPLIFIER - REVISED 131767 2/3/2006
2005 Toyota Tacoma STEERING FLUTTER FIELD-FIX PROCEDURE 132822 4/20/2006
2005 Toyota Tacoma NO START IN SUB-FREEZING AMBIENT AIR TEMPERATURES - POSSIBLE DTC'S P0300, P0171, P0174 - REVISED 133382 5/9/2006
2005 Toyota Tacoma REAR SUSPENSION NOISE - REVISED 139700 10/9/2007
2004 Toyota Tacoma EXTENDED ENGINE CRANK 126596 12/22/2004
2003 Toyota Tacoma BLANK MAP SCREEN IN NAVIGATION SYSTEM 119009 6/4/2003
2003 Toyota Tacoma WIND NOISE: MANUAL OUTER REAR VIEW MIRROR - REVISED 121190 11/27/2003
2002 Toyota Tacoma FAN FLUID COUPLING REPLACEMENT FOR INCREASED TOW HITCH CAPACITY 114141 9/21/2001
2002 Toyota Tacoma MIL ON - DTC P0136 116918 12/23/2002
2002 Toyota Tacoma MIL ON - DTC P0770 116920 12/24/2002
2001 Toyota Tacoma NEW BRAKE PEDAL LINKAGE 112895 2/2/2001
2001 Toyota Tacoma VEHICLE WILL NOT UNLOCK ON FIRST REQUEST 114148 8/31/2001
1999 Toyota Tacoma HEADLAMP REFLECTOR CHANGE 46409 10/15/1999
1998 Toyota Tacoma A/C INDICATOR LIGHT OPERATION IN DEFROSTER MODE 44994 3/13/1998
1998 Toyota Tacoma TICKING NOISE FROM VACUUM SWITCHING VALVE 47543 12/25/1998
1998 Toyota Tacoma SQUEAKS & RATTLES SERVICE TIPS 51208 10/2/1998
1998 Toyota Tacoma QUARTER PANEL SECTIONING (CUT-P) PROCEDURE 185792 9/1/1998
1997 Toyota Tacoma AM STATIC NOISE ON VHCLS W/ POWER ANTENNAS 45723 10/25/1996
1997 Toyota Tacoma CD PLAYER DOES NOT ACCEPT/EJECT CD - PIO/DIO 34224 45727 5/23/1997
1997 Toyota Tacoma BRAKE PAD KNOCK NOISE - 4X4 46641 3/14/1997
1997 Toyota Tacoma IDLE SPEED IMPROVED - ECM - 2RZ 4X2 W/ A/T 47480 2/13/1998
1997 Toyota Tacoma UNDERCOATING ON O2 SENSORS - CAUTION 47497 10/11/1996
1997 Toyota Tacoma 3RZ-FE ECM IDLE SPEED 47501 4/23/1999
1997 Toyota Tacoma P OR N TO R DELAYED ENGAGEMENT - A340E/A343F 54821 8/1/1997
1997 Toyota Tacoma A/T SERIAL NUMBERS - MODEL/LOCATION/KEY 54833 12/20/1996
Written by Jason Lancaster