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Old 04-07-2021, 10:37 AM #16
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Funny how relevant this thread is. I'm in a similar boat, and I'm sure all of us 3rd gen owners have these conversations with ourselves dealing with 20+ year old vehicles. I love mine, it does everything I want it to without costing me a car payment, so its a pretty simple decision.

State inspection time, the guys at the garage are being especially picky this year it seems, but oh well. I knew most of these were on the horizon, thought I'd skate through another year. Tie rods, leaking rear axle seal, brakes, leaking valve cover gaskets, and now a starter that is recently acting up. They want $2000+ to fix it all.

I'll do some myself, use it as a chance to do a few other things I've been putting off, mainly LBJ's. So throw in LBJ's and UBJ's, all inner and outer tie rods, a starter rebuild kit - do half the work myself and let the shop handle a few things for time sake. I'll still cost run me between $1200 and $1500 but well worth it.

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Old 04-07-2021, 10:58 AM #17
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Can you take it to another shot? They say you need to fix all that before they will pass you?

God im glad I dont live in a inspection state, its just an easy chance for shot to pressure you into fixing things that may not need to be fixed so they make more money. Such bullshit if you ask me.

But to the point how is the starter acting up? mine started making a weird noise and it was just the washer was getting pushed up and hitting the flywheel.

I will always push to fix you current car, car payments blow and such so much money from your income. plus you learn so much about your vehcile its a great bonding experiance .

I have 260k miles. I replaced the alternator(wanted to upgrade), lower ball joints, suspension, trasnfer case(I took it under water and broke 4wd motor), front differencial(gear chiped a took and punched a hole in case). All things replaced myself lots purchased from junk yards used.

Other than like the Lower ball joints and making fixing somthing that making noises most things that break on thisn car dont leave you stranded or randomly die on you. get yourself some kinda volt meter to have on your dash so you will know when the alternator isnt making 13v+ anymore cause that one will creep up on you.
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Old 04-07-2021, 11:52 AM #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by calimobber View Post
Can you take it to another shot? They say you need to fix all that before they will pass you?

God im glad I dont live in a inspection state, its just an easy chance for shot to pressure you into fixing things that may not need to be fixed so they make more money. Such bullshit if you ask me.

But to the point how is the starter acting up? mine started making a weird noise and it was just the washer was getting pushed up and hitting the flywheel.

I will always push to fix you current car, car payments blow and such so much money from your income. plus you learn so much about your vehcile its a great bonding experiance .

I have 260k miles. I replaced the alternator(wanted to upgrade), lower ball joints, suspension, trasnfer case(I took it under water and broke 4wd motor), front differencial(gear chiped a took and punched a hole in case). All things replaced myself lots purchased from junk yards used.

Other than like the Lower ball joints and making fixing somthing that making noises most things that break on thisn car dont leave you stranded or randomly die on you. get yourself some kinda volt meter to have on your dash so you will know when the alternator isnt making 13v+ anymore cause that one will creep up on you.
Inspections in PA are a pain, but at this point we're half way through the process, emissions are done and pending a few items I mentioned to get it through. I do as much as I can myself as time permits to keep the costs down.

Starter isn't required for inspection, but has been acting up just recently- click but no crank for a time or two, then will engage. Might as well do it now. I'm going to replace the contacts and will hope that does it- sounds pretty common. I replaced my alternator a year or two back and checked it, all good there.

As far as the other stuff, certain garages- especially the chain shops, which this is not one- will nickel and dime you for little parts that wear out like tie rods, etc. I've been using these guys for years, and they actually helped me rebuild it when insurance deemed it totaled, so I'm not going to write them off even though they seem a ticky tack this time around. They are usually pretty straight forward and are good with me taking it home and doing things myself.

LBJ's were on my soon to do list at 175k, even though they say they are good, I'm under there so I'll do it all at once this weekend. I'll splurge on OE parts and save the labor. Been smelling burning oil and seeing some seepage from the VCG's so this forced me to take care of that as well. Front brakes no problem and no surprise.

I'm letting the shop handle the rear axle seal and the rear drums as I'm on a time crunch. Don't mind doing the rest of work and the truck will get a nice refresh. Easy decision for me to keep her alive. Until they start making them again with a manual trans/e-locker combo, I'll keep fixing this one.
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Old 04-07-2021, 12:24 PM #19
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Should I Keep Putting Money Into My 2001?

We donít have regular inspections here in KS. Makes it easy to decide for yourself what needs fixing and what can wait.

The only inspection is a one-time VIN check upon first registering the vehicle. This is just to verify that the vehicle youíre registering is indeed the vehicle youíre driving.

They also have you pop the hood for a quick visual check, but you donít even have to start the engine. I guess they figure if you made it to the patrol station, it must be road-worthy. LOL.

Itís a one-time thing that takes about 5 minutes.

EDIT: sorry wrong thread! How embarrassing!!
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Old 04-07-2021, 01:30 PM #20
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Originally Posted by cl4Rk View Post
We don’t have regular inspections here in KS. Makes it easy to decide for yourself what needs fixing and what can wait.

The only inspection is a one-time VIN check upon first registering the vehicle. This is just to verify that the vehicle you’re registering is indeed the vehicle you’re driving.

They also have you pop the hood for a quick visual check, but you don’t even have to start the engine. I guess they figure if you made it to the patrol station, it must be road-worthy. LOL.

It’s a one-time thing that takes about 5 minutes.

EDIT: sorry wrong thread! How embarrassing!!
i too am in a non inspeection state, so if I do indeed have a bad cat....its just gonna get roto out and put back in,
however the cops can pull you over if things are not working correct, and you have x # of days to fix, and honestly I have seen cars on the road that should not be and have to be dangerous and some putting out so much smoke its hard to beleive they are not throwing a quart of oil in every few miles. So at times I do wish we had inspections.
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Old 04-08-2021, 10:19 AM #21
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Thank you all for the feedback - while I knew the opinions here would probably lean towards "keep her," it was nice to hear it, and you guys made some great points.

The idea that a newer used car wouldn't necessarily be more reliable is a great point. Also, thinking about the cost of repairs seems like a lot because it's all at once. But, it's way cheaper than the car payment when you add it up. I also really like the idea of keeping a rainy day fund for the next expensive repair - because it is bound to happen eventually, but if I expect it and prepare, then I'll just eat the cost and get back to driving my favorite car.

The real tragedy here is the rust. I wish I had done prevention much earlier. I was too oblivious to realize what a gem I had early on. I do worry it will eventually eat my car beyond repair, but I have tried to catch up and stay ahead of it to slow that process way down. The frame is solid, and most of the body is as well, but the rust makes every simple repair so much tougher.

Anyway, I think I'll get the new rack, suspension, and muffler and continue to enjoy. Thanks for the input everyone!
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Old 05-17-2021, 10:16 AM #22
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Just as an update - I decided to try to keep her going! I just installed a new OEM steering rack, KYB gas a justs all around, and OME 880/906s. It's riding soo much better, and my confidence in it is coming back. Next up is the muffler and trying to fix my over active VSC/TRAC and ABS.

Here's a before and after of the suspension.
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Old 05-17-2021, 10:40 AM #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sawdog View Post
Funny how relevant this thread is. I'm in a similar boat, and I'm sure all of us 3rd gen owners have these conversations with ourselves dealing with 20+ year old vehicles. I love mine, it does everything I want it to without costing me a car payment, so its a pretty simple decision.

State inspection time, the guys at the garage are being especially picky this year it seems, but oh well. I knew most of these were on the horizon, thought I'd skate through another year. Tie rods, leaking rear axle seal, brakes, leaking valve cover gaskets, and now a starter that is recently acting up. They want $2000+ to fix it all.

I'll do some myself, use it as a chance to do a few other things I've been putting off, mainly LBJ's. So throw in LBJ's and UBJ's, all inner and outer tie rods, a starter rebuild kit - do half the work myself and let the shop handle a few things for time sake. I'll still cost run me between $1200 and $1500 but well worth it.
Quote:
Originally Posted by 3bears View Post
i too am in a non inspeection state, so if I do indeed have a bad cat....its just gonna get roto out and put back in,
however the cops can pull you over if things are not working correct, and you have x # of days to fix, and honestly I have seen cars on the road that should not be and have to be dangerous and some putting out so much smoke its hard to beleive they are not throwing a quart of oil in every few miles. So at times I do wish we had inspections.
Quote:
Originally Posted by RumHam26 View Post
Thank you all for the feedback - while I knew the opinions here would probably lean towards "keep her," it was nice to hear it, and you guys made some great points.

The idea that a newer used car wouldn't necessarily be more reliable is a great point. Also, thinking about the cost of repairs seems like a lot because it's all at once. But, it's way cheaper than the car payment when you add it up. I also really like the idea of keeping a rainy day fund for the next expensive repair - because it is bound to happen eventually, but if I expect it and prepare, then I'll just eat the cost and get back to driving my favorite car.

The real tragedy here is the rust. I wish I had done prevention much earlier. I was too oblivious to realize what a gem I had early on. I do worry it will eventually eat my car beyond repair, but I have tried to catch up and stay ahead of it to slow that process way down. The frame is solid, and most of the body is as well, but the rust makes every simple repair so much tougher.

Anyway, I think I'll get the new rack, suspension, and muffler and continue to enjoy. Thanks for the input everyone!
I don't know how the specific laws are written in your state but is it an option to just not fix anything and take the ticket you may get. I drove a first generation 1987 4Runner for a long time without a valid inspection sticker here in NJ. I mean I drove that thing around with a 10 year old sticker and never got pulled over. Even if I did get a ticket it was only going to be $130. I don't even think the police care about that anymore. 15-20 years ago it was a different story, I felt like they did pull you over for a bad sticker, not so much nowadays. The truck was not dangerous or anything like that it just wouldn't pass emissions for one reason or another. I gave up trying to get it through. My current 3rd gen won't pass because of an EVAP leak, I have no intention on trying to fix that either.

All they do at the inspection station here is plug a reader in to the OBD port and look for codes. You could roll into the station with a rolling death trap, bald tires, gaping rust holes, and as long as it doesn't throw a code you get your sticker.
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Old 05-17-2021, 05:03 PM #24
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Rust is going to be a prob

Quote:
Originally Posted by RumHam26 View Post
The real tragedy here is the rust. I wish I had done prevention much earlier. I was too oblivious to realize what a gem I had early on. I do worry it will eventually eat my car beyond repair, but I have tried to catch up and stay ahead of it to slow that process way down. The frame is solid, and most of the body is as well, but the rust makes every simple repair so much tougher.
When I saw your 4Runner was in the Chicagoland area, PTSD from working on my wife's 4Runner came rushing back. She had an upper midwest special from Chicago. Cosmetically perfect from the outside and low miles. Looked nicer than my West Coast 4Runner that was more abused. However, every nut/bolt on her 4Runner was a huge PITA to get off. Her rust issues weren't even super terrible for the year/mileage, too. She had her 4Runner serviced by a few local area mechanics in Portland, OR. None of them really wanted to work on it and upcharged based on rust. TBH, West Coast mechanics rarely have to deal with rust buckets compared to their Midwest counterparts.

It sounds like you are moving ahead with repairs. I'd maybe think about selling yours and buying a cleaner, rust-free 4Runner if you want to invest time and money building up a 'new-to-you' 3rd gen. Might as well repair a tired rust-free 4Runner than a tired rusted 4Runner. You'll save yourself innumerable headaches moving forward, as well as money and time.
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