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Old 08-17-2019, 08:15 PM #1
Kazzy4RNR Kazzy4RNR is offline
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1995 Starter Replacement

I am trying to remove & replace the old starter. Iíve watched & read everything I can find but nothing Iíve seen or read pertains exactly to a 1995. Iíve seen & read about this procedure for 1993, 1994, 1996, etc., but havenít found anything on the 1995. I am finding that the differences that I see with my 1995 are enough to stump me. I am trying to go through the passenger-side wheel well, but access to disconnect the power cables seems virtually impossible & I cannot even locate the 2 nuts that attach the starter to the engine. I used the new starter as a reference so I see where the connections are, but I am still unable to disconnect the components of the starter.

Any insight/tips would be helpful. Thanks in advance!

1995 V6 5-speed manual 4WD
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Old 08-18-2019, 01:19 AM #2
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Replaced mine on a '92, 10 years ago. I don't remember about the connector, but remember something about 18" or even 24" of extensions on the end of a socket set. It was easy once you got to it. Though come to think of it, I messed something up, maybe not connecting the connector, so had to redo it right away.

Sometimes lots of light helps, and you can always put a small flashlight, with or without a magnet, up somewhere.

Figure out those connectors. Recently I was grabbing a tail light for a friend's jeep, and just had to snip the connection. I finally figured it out at home, that it had an extra pin you had to take out first. I haven't seen that on a Toyota, but I did just have a few troublesome connectors on a Rav4, where Toyota put the part that needed pressure to disconnect the connector on the back side, where you couldn't see it. Frustrating.
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06 Sienna AWD 151k
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Old 08-18-2019, 02:29 PM #3
Kazzy4RNR Kazzy4RNR is offline
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Thanks Giro. I have the extension(s) ready as I’ve seen described, and that you mention, to get the top connector. I think I can get the bottom connector with a gear wrench as an alternative to a socket wrench. What I do not find in anything I’ve seen/read is navigating the super-narrow spaces to disconnect the power connections. Everything in the ‘95 seems to be even more tightly fitted in the space that in the other years (even in Tacoma videos). For example, the (red) power connection has a plastic flip-cap covering the nut attachment to the starter. Flipping that cover open makes accessing the nut even tighter & confusing as to what tool can get into that space. What I believe is the ground is located on the bottom of the starter — I was up to my armpit reaching over the axle and feeling my way to the male-female plug, but can get enough leverage to push the clip and pull at the same time. I’m wondering if the ‘95 version requires more disassembly for ease of access? Thanks again! — Steve
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Old 09-15-2019, 08:19 PM #4
Kazzy4RNR Kazzy4RNR is offline
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1995 Starter Replacement: Update

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kazzy4RNR View Post
I am trying to remove & replace the old starter. Iíve watched & read everything I can find but nothing Iíve seen or read pertains exactly to a 1995. Iíve seen & read about this procedure for 1993, 1994, 1996, etc., but havenít found anything on the 1995. I am finding that the differences that I see with my 1995 are enough to stump me. I am trying to go through the passenger-side wheel well, but access to disconnect the power cables seems virtually impossible & I cannot even locate the 2 nuts that attach the starter to the engine. I used the new starter as a reference so I see where the connections are, but I am still unable to disconnect the components of the starter.

Any insight/tips would be helpful. Thanks in advance!

1995 V6 5-speed manual 4WD
Here is my follow-up for replacing the starter in a 1995 SR5 V6 (3VZ-E engine). After exhaustively searching the internet and watching a multitude of online videos (notably, not finding a thing specifically for the 1995 year), I pieced parts of each together.

The common steps shared by all write-ups and videos were disconnecting the battery and removing the passenger side tire (and, placing the vehicle on jack stands). Disconnecting the power line from the battery to the starter required the simple removal of the cap covering the nut. This is where the job became complicated because of difficult access to the remaining connections and the differences between all the videos/write-ups and what I saw for the 1995 starter.

Once piece of information that I found somewhat useful was the link to the web archive (Where to find Factory Service Manuals) (special thanks to KidVermicious for that Forum post in the Classics Section). But, even the diagrams for the starter did not exactly illustrate what I could see with my 4Runner.

After disconnecting the power line to the starter, I tried to disconnect the ground on the bottom of the starter. The connection was a male/female piece, which I found difficult to disconnect because of the limited access. After trying via the wheel well, I tried accessing the connector from the back. While I could reach the connector, I did not have any leverage to press the lock and unplug the connector.

Next, I took the skid plate off the front to see if I could reach the connector. My arms were just small enough, but also long enough to reach the connector from the front and disconnect the ground connector.

With all the electrical connectors disconnected, it was time to remove the bolts holding the starter from the flywheel bellhousing. A difference I saw between my starter and what I saw in the write-ups was the orientation/location of the two bolts holding the starter on the flywheel bellhousing. What I saw in the videos/write-ups was that the two bolts were removed from the engine-facing (front) side of the starters or the top bolt on the engine-facing side and the bottom bolt on the rear-facing side. I couldnít see any top bolt from the engine facing side, so comparing the old starter to the new starter, I could see what appeared to be a bolt at the bottom (engine-facing) and another bolt at the top (rear facing). I had not seen this bolt arrangement anywhere. Even the factory service manual referenced above showed the two bolts going in from the rear-facing side. With a few ratchet extenders, I was able to remove the top and bottom bolts, and was on to the tricky step of wiggling the starter through the tiny ďopeningĒ in the wheel well. I was able to use both hands by reaching up and around with my left arm to support the weight of the starter and maneuvering the starter with my right hand. I did not discover any trick to getting it out, just persistent fidgeting.

The reinstall was not a simple ďdo backwards what I just didĒ to remove the starter. Getting the starter back through the ďwindowĒ through the wheel well was possibly trickier than getting it out. I think what ended up being successful was putting the engine-facing end of the starter into the window first. I sort of went in, down, and toward the front so the starter motor could be oriented toward the flywheel bellhousing. Once I got the orientation of the starter correct, I placed the starter motor in the flywheel bellhousing and placed the lower and upper bolts back into their respective spots and hand-tightened them. I finished tightening the bolts with the ratchet wrench and extenders, then reconnected the power cables. After reconnecting the battery (new), it was time to try starting the vehicle. While it took about 10 seconds to turn over, it fired right up!

This was my first real wrenching attempt (other than an oil/oil filter change). Total time from when the starter died to starting it back up ó 1 year, 11 months! Total time after buying a new starter, researching, and finishing the job ó 4 weeks (off-&-on). Now that I ďknowĒ what Iím doing, I wouldnít describe this as a 2 hour job like many people stated on the videos I watched. Iíd say itís more like a half-day job, with a lot of frustration. Itís a ďsimpleĒ project because it requires only a few steps: disconnect battery; remove tire; disconnect old starter; install new starter; reconnect battery; and start. But, access to the starter makes the starter replacement difficult. For all you big guys, access will be even worse. My ability to reach into small ďopeningsĒ helped a ton.
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