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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Okay first my truck is an 03 limited AC 4x4 with 212,xxx mles. Been barely taken care of, way too busy with other things and the truck took a back seat to maintenance. But being that summer is upon us and we are traveling more I started with an oil change ad tire rotation long with n alignment heck. That was all okay. They did tell me my fuel system is dirty and I need to change my fuel filter. Also my tranny and diff need an oil change. And my radiator needs to be flushed.
Also needs a timing belt change, that I know. And I need to bleed my brakes. And my power steering fluid is real dirty. I do need plugs and wires.
My question is with money extremely tight. Where do I begin?
 

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A little preventative maintenance goes a long way, so I'd start with taking care of the things that will end up being the most expensive if they do end up breaking on you (Timing Belt, Trans Flush, etc.) Just keep chipping away at the list as you can. Do as much of it yourself as you can, that will save you a lot. One thing that can make or break this whole situation for you, is the service history. If you have 212,xxx miles on this thing and its the first time you're doing the timing belt, or flushing the tranny, you may want to just start saving up for another truck. Toyota's are very dependable vehicles, but anything will break if you try hard enough, or don't maintain it for a long enough period.

Just from the info you gave here, and assuming that you have the 4.7l V8 and that the last time any major maintenance was done was at 100,000 miles or so, I'd put your list in this order. This is all assuming that your truck is running fine, and is just coming across a maintenance interval, not because you are having any issues with it.

1) Timing Belt. Get 'R Done! This will most definitely be the most expensive broken part of the truck. If you can, bring it to a Toyota dealership who knows what they are doing. Some mom and pop shops don't necessarily work on these truck often, so they may not know the little insider secrets at Toyota tech will. You can combine the rad flush with this, because I think they need to pull the water pump off to do this, if I am not mistaken. I would think it would be very easy for them to drain the rad, if they don't already, and put fresh coolant in. (Haven't done it on this motor, but the principles are pretty much the same)

2) Coolant flush. I put this before the trans flush because it's usually something people skip all together, and you can pretty much assume it was never done before. Also, this is a total DIY project that just about anyone can do, and is cheap, if you are not having it done with the timing belt.

3) Depending on whether or not the trans has ever been serviced before, and it is operating fine, you may just want to leave it alone. If it was serviced within the last 100,000 miles or so, it should be ok to flush, but if its the original trans fluid that is in there, don't touch it.

4) Diff fluid change. Another easy DIY, and cheap. Shouldn't take more than a half hour. Just make sure that if you have a limited slip differential, you get the right gear oil that has the LS additive in it.

5) I'm not familiar enough with these trucks to know what kind of fuel filter is in the fuel system, or where it is located, but if its anything like the older trucks I'm used to, this is yet another DIY that is easy to do. If it is mounted on the frame rail, just simply unscrew the fittings, and replace with a new one. If it is rusted on there, you may want to cut and splice some new fuel line in there so that you don't end up causing yourself any fuel leaks. In the mean time, toss some fuel system cleaner in a near empty tank, and then fill her up. (I find that Seafoam works pretty well).

6) Power steering flush should be easy enough to do, but sometimes they require special tools to get at the fittings for the lines. Asses the situation and get it done by a mom and pop shop (or Toyota) if necessary.

7) Bleeding the brakes, replacing the plugs, and replacing the wires should definitely be taken care of asap, and they are only on the list last because of the relative importance assigned to the other tasks. Obviously, if your brakes are leaking, or the master cyl is failing, get it taken care of asap. Safety first always. If the spark plugs are original, be careful when taking them out. You may want to un plug the wires, and spray some WD-40 or something on the plugs and let the truck sit overnight before trying to loosen them. (Obviously do this with a COOL motor, and don't make a mess with the WD-40, you don't need an engine fire!). Obviously, replacing the plugs and wires at the same time would be convenient, but not necessary. If you are having any ignition problems with the truck, try to diagnose the true cause first. You don't want to blow money on plugs and wires and then still have a knock or ping in the motor.
 

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Here are a few places to start. I would have saved some cash and done the oil change myself.

http://www.tundratalk.net/forums/ma...5-7-tundra-diy-transmission-fluid-change.html

http://www.tundratalk.net/forums/tu...diy-rear-front-differential-fluid-change.html

For next time:

http://www.tundratalk.net/forums/maintenance-repair/42806-diy-5-7l-oil-change.html

Good luck. I know how you feel. My last truck didnt get the maint it deserved for the same reasons you stated. Hoping to stay much more on top of it with the Tundra. Now, having the time to wash it is a different story.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
This is the second timing belt that will be getting done, first one was done at 91,000. i am the second owner of this truck. The trucks still drives very strong, and very clean. Just what are some of the things I can do myself, plugs and wires?
 
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Here are a few places to start. I would have saved some cash and done the oil change myself.

http://www.tundratalk.net/forums/ma...5-7-tundra-diy-transmission-fluid-change.html

http://www.tundratalk.net/forums/tu...diy-rear-front-differential-fluid-change.html

For next time:

http://www.tundratalk.net/forums/maintenance-repair/42806-diy-5-7l-oil-change.html

Good luck. I know how you feel. My last truck didnt get the maint it deserved for the same reasons you stated. Hoping to stay much more on top of it with the Tundra. Now, having the time to wash it is a different story.
Not sure a lot of this will apply to him man, he has a Gen-1 ;)

SSG, I edited my first post, hopefully something useful is in there
 

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^ that. Get the timing belt and water pump done, the rest is pretty much DIY aside from tire related stuff.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The DIY stuff I started yesterday, I did the spark plugs. Being the first time working as a shade tree mechanic went really smooth. I gotta say I don't understand why they charge so much at a shop. Anywho, the plug were very black and sooty. Should I be concerned? Today after work I tackle the fuel filter. Is there anything that will surprise me. Also any recommendations as to what i should get to help clean the fuel injectors and fuel rail? Little by little it will get done.
 
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I'm somewhat in the same boat. My check engine light went on about 2 weeks ago. I took it to the mechanic and he said you need to change your plugs you need your fuel injectors clean you need two new sensors.

Hopefully cleaning the injectors will do the trick, if not I might have to replace injectors, next year will probably be time to do another timing belt.

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Discussion Starter · #10 · (Edited)
Ongoing maintenance

Ahh two more things done. Fuel filter check. Not that bad a couple pieces fell out of it. So maybe it was a good thing I changed it. Went pretty smooth. Then while was under the truck I did the rear diff. Holy easy! Drained it and replaced it. The rear diff oil was black and thick. I put in 75w90 synthetic valvoline almost three bottle. Maybe two out. Now saving up to do the water pump, timing belt and radiator flush. Got a question while I am flushing fluids. How do i drain the front diff and refill it? i saw the drain plug, wheres the fill hole? Can I do the tranny flush in my driveway with my hand tools?
 

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Ahh two more things done. Fuel filter check. Not that bad a couple pieces fell out of it. So maybe it was a good thing I changed it. Went pretty smooth. Then while was under the truck I did the rear diff. Holy easy! Drained it and replaced it. The rear diff oil was black and thick. I put in 75w90 synthetic valvoline almost three bottle. Maybe two out. Now saving up to do the water pump, timing belt and radiator flush. Got a question while I am flushing fluids. How do i drain the front diff and refill it? i saw the drain plug, wheres the fill hole? Can I do the tranny flush in my driveway with my hand tools?
I had my transmission fluid changed at a garage, they hooked it up to a machine, it gets flushed


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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Today I had a 400 mile round trip road trip. Truck was flawless, averaged 18.3 miles per gallon. Set cruise at 65 never once I'd I brake or speed up. Hardly ever happens. No unusual noises or vibrations or stutters. So selling yeah NO. Just going to continue with getting my maintenance up to the standard. Timing belt and water pump. Radiator flush. Transfer case flush, front diff flush. And transmission flush.
 
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You can do the transfer yourself, easy as the rear diff. The front diff requires some wrangling to fill it but buy some clear cheap vinyl hose that fits the diff oil bottle and you are good. As for the rear diff, I'd call Toyota with your vin number and ask them to tell you if your truck has a limited slip diff. If so I'd make damn sure that your oil has a fiction modifier additive in it. If not go buy one, even the Chevy or whatever will work just get a gear oil fiction modifier.

As for the transmission.....I wouldn't recommend getting a full fluid flush....not with that many miles. Could cause you more problems than it solves. Just pull the drain plug and drain the pan, refill it with about 4 or 5 litres of the correct atf (what year is your truck? Older first gen trucks use standard dexron 3 newer ones use Toyota world standard and have no drain plug and no fluid change interval). I would highly recommend NOT going to get a full fluid flush as it often will loosen up something and ruin your valve body....just do a drain and fill every month or two for about 3 cycles and then stay doing it once a year or so....take it out of overdrive when you tow or have lots and lots of weight in the back and you should be good for a while.

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Yeah I already did the rear diff before my trip. Not a limited slip. And I posted some links to help me and whoever else is changing the front/rear diff and transfer case earlier. Those i am doing on wednesday. My transmission is not slipping but the fluid is quite dark. Maybe just a fluid change by draining the fluid in the pan, like you said just a couple of months of draining and filling.
 

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Much safer abs better way to do it in a tranny like yours. If you want to go the extra mile use synthetic in your drain and fill, after doing it 3 times you will have changed out almost exactly 78 percent of the fluid with synthetic, assuming 40 percent comes out with each drain and fill
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Been super busy with work and had the day off! got around to doing my front differential case. Super easy, with a hose. Next up transfer case. Wish me luck.
 

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Nice! Keep it up and you'll have that new fluid smell... next best thing to new truck smell.
 
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