NHTSA Investigating Tundra Frame Rust

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UPDATE: As of May 2010, Toyota has extended the warranty on 2000-2003 Tundra frames. Please see Toyota Tundra Frame Replacement Program for more details.

NHTSA has officially announced a 2000-2001 Tundra frame rust investigation. According to multiple news sources, Toyota has begun to quietly replace frames and/or buy-out Tundra owners. Whether this is Toyota deciding to act in good faith or an attempt to avoid an embarrassing safety recall is hard to say, but the good news is that 2000-2001 Tundra owners with rusted frames are finally going to get consideration from Toyota.

Rusted frame on a 1st generation Tundra

Rusted frame on a 1st generation Tundra

PickupTrucks.com has a great story about this investigation with some info about Tundra frame replacements, as well as some communication from Toyota that indicates the root cause of the frame rust issue:

According to Lyons, 1995-2004 Tacoma pickups and 2000-01 Tundras shared the same frame supplier: Toledo, Ohio-based Dana Holding Corporation. In investigating the Tacoma’s rust complaints, Toyota discovered that Dana hadn’t properly prepped Tacoma frames to resist corrosion before they were shipped to Toyota’s NUMMI manufacturing plant, where the Tacoma was assembled

This information is consistent with Toyota’s previous statement on the matter when WCVB in Boston first broke this story. However, this isn’t consistent with owner reports of frame rust on 2002 and 2003 Tundras. If you’re a first generation Tundra owner with a rusted frame, you are strongly advised to visit your Toyota dealer. Now is the time to have your frame rust problem documented. If your local Toyota dealer does not respond quickly, by all means contact NHTSA. This is the only way to get Toyota to act.

The actual text of the NHTSA investigation announcement:

THE OFFICE OF DEFECTS INVESTIGATION HAS RECEIVED 20 REPORTS ON THE SUBJECT VEHICLES THAT RELATE TO SPARE TIRE SEPARATION AND BRAKE SYSTEM FAILURES AS A RESULT OF SEVERE FRAME CORROSION. THERE HAVE BEEN 15 REPORTS ALLEGING THE UNDER BODY MOUNTED SPARE TIRE SEPARATED FROM THE REAR CROSSMEMBER AND FIVE REPORTS ALLEGING BROKEN BRAKE LINES AT THE PROPORTIONING VALVE LOCATED ON THE DRIVER’S SIDE OF THE REAR CROSSMEMBER AT THE UPPER SHOCK MOUNT.

If NHTSA officially determines the frame rust is a safety issue they can force Toyota to repair the defect in all vehicles – meaning every 2000 and 2001 Tundra will need either a replacement frame or some sort of undercoating. Often times, in order to avoid a recall, a manufacturer can work with NHTSA to find a solution that solves the problem without issuing a recall. This is similar to the way Toyota handled the frame rust issue on 1995-2000 Tacomas (Toyota extended the warranty on these trucks). Extending the warranty forced Toyota to replace or buy-back the bad trucks without having to issue a recall, and we would expect a similar move IF NHTSA determines Toyota needs to take action.

However, in order to avoid the whole situation, it sounds like Toyota is taking action now. Here’s a list of rumored actions Toyota has taken to make this right with 1st gen Tundra owners:

  • Frame replacement. It might sound crazy, but Toyota is replacing entire frames piece-by-piece for some first generation Tundra owners. This is an expensive option for Toyota, but it satisfies any government requirements.
  • Cash payment buy-backs. Buying back the trucks with the rusted frames (and subsequently junking them) is a cheap way for Toyota to fix this problem…but some owners expect more than fair value. If you find yourself in this situation, expect Toyota to offer you retail replacement value according to the NADA or KBB used vehicle pricing guides. If you try and hold Toyota up for a lot of money, they’ll simply replace your frame (and you’ll get nothing).
  • Purchase credit towards a new Toyota. Toyota has also offered credits towards new vehicles, with the rumor being the credit was $10k. $10k almost buys a new Yaris or Corolla, and it’s a fine down payment on a new Tundra.

If you have any first-hand experience, or if you know of anyone who’s been offered a new frame, a cash payment, or a credit towards a new Toyota, please comment below.

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  1. mk says:

    Sorry, don’t know anybody getting cash incentive or new frame due to rust. I would like to know if the 2007 on up tundra frames are also being built at that same plant ‘Dana Holding’ in Ohio? One small reason I got rid of my 2007 tundra is the frame was rusting pretty bad in only 1 1/2 years and 20K on the truck here in WI. The 07’s might be in the same boat as the 02’s are now in 4-5 years from now unfortunately. I’m definitely going to check right after winter on my 2010 tundra for rusted tailgates, chrome bumpers and lug nuts, and 2 other areas besides the frame rusting that I had all replaced or repainted on my 2007 tundra double cab. I expect a little rust on the frame in 2 years, not excessive which I know it was on my 2007 tundra.

    Good article Jason – keep up the good work and information coming our way.

  2. Ford Peterson says:

    I just traded my 2001 SR5 for a spit shiney new 2008 Double Cab. I had no clue of any problems with the truck. I was somewhat shocked to get the deal I struck with them at the time. This was late last December 2008. Three times I put on my coat and headed for the door, and three times they dragged me back and sweetened the deal by $1k. Is it possible they were already aware of this problem last December and simply wanted me out of that truck?

    How good a deal? How about $26K for a double cab V8 with loads of goodies like running boards, tannau cover, ladder rack, fancy radio… Wow! I couldn’t walk away.

  3. Bruce says:

    got 07 tundra live in Utah. no rust anywhere on truck. wash it every once in a while about a week or two in winter to keep salt off it in summer not as much. i use the $6.00 car wash the wax in the car wash help.

  4. James Sabourin says:

    IOn Sept. 13, 2009, I was returning home from a camping trip and towing my 5th wheel with my Tundra. I have had the Tundra and 5th wheel combination since they were both new in 2002 and towing has been excellent. This trip however, I hit a ‘bump’ on Rt. 93 Southbound (Heavy Traffic) in Medford, MA and the spare tire broke off of the holder. It proceeded to bounce up into the front compartment of the trailer and then dropped down and lodged between the trailer’s axels. It was pretty scary, not really knowing what was happening, but I managed to pull the vehicles over to the roadside. At least no one was injured except the vehicles.
    I now have about $5,000 in repair bills relating to the ‘accident’; and a pending Insurance Surcharge for the ‘accident’. My concern is that the spare tire/wheel had never been off of the Tundra and were ‘new’ except for their age. It appears that the amount of rust on the tire hanger bracket was a major cause of the wheel dropping. I have pictures and the original parts for documentation. I am concerned that this could be happening to many other Tundra

  5. mk says:

    Could be wrong, but WI has more snow and salt used on the roads than Utah. Still, the rust all over the 07′ tundra’s frame after 1 winter was a shock and none of my past Chevy Silverados had anywhere near the amount of frame rust after 1 winter as my 07′ tundra did. Hope they got it fixed for rusting on my 2010 tundra – will keep a close eye on it come next April. 26K is pretty good on an 08′ model year carryover as long as it is a 4wd with all those extras. I buy mine at invoice or I don’t buy period. There is always a dealer whether Toyota or Chevy or Ford or Honda or whoever that will sell at invoice. Dealers still make a holdback from their mfg. for every new car sold.

  6. Mickey says:

    I would think that this Ohio based Dana Holding Corp compnay will no longer exist and become bankrupt. Toyota will go after them for the bad frames.

  7. Mickey says:

    Toyota should come forward with information on how long they used this company or if they still do.

  8. janet says:

    Our 2000 Tundra is in pieces at the dealership. We were initially elated when Toyota agreed to replace our corroded frame, but now they are refusing to replace the leafsprings and other frame related parts until we give them 1700.00. We are been making payments on an undrivable vehicle for over a year (we bought this used with low mileage). Clearly we have given Toyota too much money already. The dealership has been hostile at times, and to this date, we don’t have our truck fixed. By the way, our frame was cracked and was so corroded the power steering separated. That was our first clue something was wrong. A year after purchasing the vehicle, our power steering abruptly stopped working. If you poured power steering fluid in, it just leaked right out. We just want this nightmare resolved. Where is the customer satisfaction and high quality standards Toyota prides themself with??

  9. mk says:

    My sympathies Janet!

    Screw the dealer and do not bother with them anymore. The dealer is small potatoes and go file to NHTSA your complaint and then maybe hire a good lawyer or contact a lemon law attorney in your state for good advice if nothing else. Don’t let the dealer push you around and don’t bother arguing with them because your case needs to go way above the local dealer’s authority. Hang in there, I bet in the end you will win as well as you should.

  10. Janet and James – These are problems that need to be given to NHTSA. If you haven’t done so already, be sure to lodge a complaint online. Because of the recent NHTSA announcement, you might consider contacting a product liability lawyer in your area. Now that the government investigation has officially launched, the proverbial “blood” is in the water. Time to go and get yourselves a shark.

  11. Mickey – Agreed. I’ll see if I can find that out.

  12. Bruce says:

    my 1999 tacoma had lite rust after i got up here in utah but keep salt off it and it stay lite toyota clean up the tacoma at turn in. but who know the 07 tundra might start to rust.

  13. Bruce says:

    i notice rust on rear axle heavy toward tires

  14. Kreg Kapron says:

    I live in Michigan and two years ago my brake light was going on, after investigating I found my brake line rotted in the drivers side frame. Now the front end/ball joints have rotted away to an ireversible state. I am glad to see action being taken and would like to be informed further.

    Thank you,
    Kreg

  15. janet says:

    http://www.thebostonchannel.co.....etail.html
    check out the story that started it all….my husband was interviewed for this story …check out the video

  16. Jen says:

    I have a 2000 Tundra TRD & pray they do take back my rust bucket. I can’t believe it’s taken this long for Toyota & NHTSA to admit there “might” be a problem. I’ve been calling Toyota for years about this issue & every year my frame gets worse. Toyota had no hesitations recalling the 1995-2000 Tacomas. We purchased the Tundra brand new & have taken excellent care of it but you’d never know it by looking at the frame. Every bracket & frame piece is so rusted that you’d think it sat at the bottom of the ocean for 30 years. We went w/ Toyota because we thought it would last for years…..boy were we wrong. I just can’t believe we paid almost $30K for a truck that has absolutely ZERO re-sale value (other than selling it for parts). Don’t get me wrong I love my Tundra it runs perfect it’s just the frame issues that completely kill the trucks. I owned a 1996 Chevy that sat for 2 years & the only thing that rusted on it was the fuel filler pipe. I just sold it 2 months ago & the frame was rust free. People who don’t live in harsh winter states like the New England area consider yourself lucky.

  17. DAVID D. says:

    2002 tacoma reg. cab noticed flakey frame brought truck to dealer and they took pictures of holes in frame and said I will get a new frame and leaf springs, and a rental car for 3 days. They were very polite

  18. Kreg Kapron says:

    How long can this “investigation” take?? Does anyone know (weeks,months, years???)

  19. Kreg – It will depend on the amount of data they have and how responsive Toyota is. NHTSA says that they resolve most investigations in less than 16 months…but there are many examples of these investigations being resolved faster. My guess? Toyota officially offers a fix that pre-empts the need for NHTSA to continue (much like they did with the Tacoma warranty extension and buy-back program). If only Toyota had done this 6 months ago when this news first came out…

  20. Kreg says:

    Last night I was wondering, after all this talk, how bad is my frame. I looked under and touched a portion only to have an approx. 4″ x 6″ flake fall to the ground.

  21. Dave Parkinsons says:

    Thanks so much for this post!

    Is there anything one can do preventively to a truck that may be in the affected group but hasn’t shown up with the problem yet? Does undercoating the chassis help? What would be a way to prevent the problem from happening?

  22. Jeremy O'Neill says:

    I own a 2000 Tundra and live here in New England. Last week I brought in the truck for inspection and tire rotation when I was told that the truck was not passable because of a hole in the frame. I am a business owner with one company truck and count on it every waking moment, this news was shocking. My truck has been wonderful, but to be told that there is nothing we can do to help you was even more shocking. What a disaster they have here, what are we all to do in the meanwhile, who is going to pay for lost time and energy that is having to be spent on pursuing justice. I can say I will fight to the end and will do what ever necessary to follow thru with complaint after complaint to make sure I get the word out The Frames are Trash and they need to be delt with. I plan on contacting my local congress man and state senate chair holder to plug them into the situation. I plan on contacting local news and paper to let them know of the potential story we have, and to put the icing on the cake I plan on creating a public expression of how dissatisfied I am with there customer service and approach on these matters. Voice is a very effective tool for this situation, keep up the chatter and continue to push any button possible to get the word out.

  23. Jeremy – The best thing you can do first is to contact NHTSA and file a formal complaint (link is in the article). The investigation is already underway. After that, pictures and video can go a long ways towards motivating public opinion. Feel free to send them here to be published – admin[at]tundraheadquarters.com (but it’s @ instead of [at]).

  24. Kreg – Unbelievable. You should get it inspected at your Toyota dealer and then file a NHTSA complaint online.

  25. Dave – Washing the undercarriage regularly – especially during winter – is the best way to prevent rust. Aside from that, there are some chemical coatings that can deter rust (aka undercoating). I don’t know a lot about undercoating, but I’ve never heard good things…so proceed with caution.

  26. Dave Parkinsons says:

    Thanks for the response, Jason!

    I contacted my local Toyota dealer, and here’s what they wrote back:

    “Toyota is not suggesting that we do anything at this point other than the inspections. If rust perforation is found we photograph and send the necessary documentation to Toyota. If the rust is severe we would advise the customer of a potential safety issue and suggest a rental car at Toyotas expense.

    Toyota does not consider us a severe cold climate in the information that they have sent out. They are having dealers in these areas do a treatment to the frame if they do not already have rust perforation.”

    • You bet man. The way I read that, chances are slim that your vehicle will develop a rust problem based on your geography. The rust issues are almost universally limited to cold, moist climates (where heavy use of road salt and/or salty sea air are quite common). That’s good news I think…but it never hurts to keep an eye out. Thanks for posting – that dealer is pretty cool to have such a reasoned response so quickly.

  27. john s says:

    maybe toyota should have told [us] only to use are tundra’s in dry climates why 4wd keep in the garage this is a truck”???????????? if the frame needed coating toyota should have done this before selling the truck’ maybe only drive on sunny day’s this [BS] BIG TIME SHAME ON TOYOTA GM & FORD WILL LOVE THIS WATCH THE TV ADD’S NOW” BUY A FORD BUY A GM THE FRAME WON’T ROT UNDER YOUR A–

  28. john s says:

    NEXT STEP’ WE ALL LET TOYOTA HOW P—- O– WE ARE WE WANT A SAFE TRUCK TOYOTA YOU HAVE THE BALL DON’T DROP IT THIS WILL COST NOW BUT A LOT MORE LATER DO YOU THINK WE WILL BUY A TOYOTA NEXT TIME IF TOYOTA WON’T STAND BY WHAT YOU SOLD US THIS TIME? CAN YOU SPELL FORD PINTO’ GM 5.7 DIESEL

  29. Tim G***** says:

    It has pained me to have had to go to the lenghts I have gone to get Toyota to do something about my truck. All I wanted was a good reliable vehicle…so I figured Toyota had a good “REPUTATION”. 14 months go by and have made payments, held issurance, and paid taxes on a vehicle that wasn’t dependable or safe. It doesn’t make sense that a business would willingly do this to a customer/ Does it? How bad can this problem really be? I will never blindly trust any dealer, relying on them to back what they sell. If they are not willing to put the vehicle on a lift and have mechanic look at it with me…FORGET IT. Thanks alot TOYOTA. Now can I finally have my truck fixed and back! Still WAITING? This is a good site guys thanks. http://www.safercars.gov
    for any claims about safety…it is all about safety!

  30. janet says:

    a rental car at Toyotas expense? the dealership still has my truck in pieces, and has acknowledged how bad and unsafe the frame is, and agreed to replace the frame yet refuse to pay for a rental. We spent about $200.00 on a rental and realized we just couldnt afford the cost long term. Our truck was brought in the first week in September, they tell us they want OUR money certain parts connected to the frame (these parts are also corroded). What a nightmare…

  31. Mickey says:

    Janet have you sought legal assistance? They maybe able to help you get this taken care of. Sometimes you have to get down and dirty to help your cause.

  32. James Sabourin says:

    Encouragement to contact NHTSA: I did that with my story (See 10/7/09) and was contacted by a NHTSA investigator within a week. He was both concerned and helpful for me. The NHTSA investigation is already launched for 2000-2001 Tundras BUT will likely include much newer models as well. See: http://www.safercar.gov/ Case # PE09049 for all of the details. If you have a rust issue, this is the time to send the NHTSA your information! The more information and pictures that we supply, the more likely any actions will be successful.

  33. Jeremy O'Neill says:

    I gave the dealer a hard enough time that toyota has decided to pick up the cost of a rental car while they replace my frame on my 2000 Tundra. I had to threaten contacting the press and went to the extreme of parking and locking my truck in front of there service door and leaving with the keys. They were not to happy with that move but it seemed to make some people move on getting me into a rental. I am still feeling uncomfortable with the frame replacement and wonder what my out of pocket we be in the end. They should be forced to buy them back @ 150% blue book like they did with the tacoma’s. Any thought’s on approach.

  34. Jeremy – I think your approach might make just as many enemies as it does friends. Also, if they’re replacing the frame why would you want them to buy it back? I think it should be one or the other.

  35. Jeremy O'Neill says:

    Jason, I guess you have not read about the customers that have received the frame replacement, and what types of parts and pieces they have been asked to pay for. I will not pay a penny to have a new frame put under my truck, but when you remove a frame you then are looking at many other parts on that frame that might not come off to easy due to massive amounts of rust. I suggest you do a bit more research before you comment. A clean buy out program would probably be cheaper right now for toyota simply because there are no frames available at this time so if the truck in question is not drivable that means toyota is renting one for the customer @ $109.00 per day. I have been told it will be a 6 to 9 week wait for the frame, then the work still needs to get done. What makes more sense, a 4k rental fee and a frame replacement, or a clean buy out. You tell me.

  36. mk says:

    Agree Jeremy, buy them all back at 150% of what the blue book tells us the tundras are worth. Much simpler for everybody involved unless you love your rusty tundra so much that 50% more than what the truck is now worth is not enough to get rid of it and get into something safer. I’ve said for the past 2 years to everyone who would listen on these websites, including complaining to Toyota 1-800# several times, that even the current 2007 tundras like I had are rusting so severely after 2 years and 25K of use vs. any of my past Chevies I have had for 2 years, that there is something wrong with the rust protection on these frames and other underneath parts already after 2 years of rusting beyond comprehension. I know it is true, just look at my former 2007 tundra here in WI and tell me different. I had severe rusty frame underneath, both chrome bumpers replaced due to 20+ spots of rust, 2″ receiver underneath rear bumper rusting in spots, all 20 chromed lug nuts rusting, both rear double cab doors in bottom rear corner of rocker panel behind rear doors rust thru with no paint left in a 2″ area and severe rust, and a dime sized rust bubble thru the paint in my outside of my tailgate about 4″ up from the bottom edge in the middle of the tailgate. I tell you all it is happening on the 2007’s on up, but no one will do anything about it until probably 5-6 years down the road when we current Tundra owners are in the same boat. You can bet on my current 2010 tundra, I now know what to look for in terms of rusting and when (not if) my chrome lug nuts show any signs of rusting in the corners after this first winter and under 1 year/12K of driving (warranty only goes 1yr/12K for rusting lug nuts), I will be marching into my dealer and getting them replaced every year after winter forever as long as I own the truck. Mark my words, I am correct unless Toyota has done something different for undercoating and chroming process in 2010, but I doubt it.

  37. Jeremy – I certainly understand your point and I agree that Toyota would be wise to buy back the bad trucks – no argument there – but I don’t think it makes any sense to replace the frame AND buy back the truck. You said in your comment that you were having them replace the frame, then you said they should buy back the truck. I guess I misunderstood. As for your suggestion that “I should do more research before commenting,” I’ll take it under advisement.

  38. janet says:

    Tomorrow, Fox news will be doing a piece on the corrosion problem. We were interviewed in Boston with video hookup to Washington. They have our pictures. This is great media exposure- they contacted us, we did not contact them. Not sure of time yet.

  39. Janet – Great! Can you let us know when the story will be on TV when you find out?

  40. Greg Decker says:

    2 weeks ago, in the mail I received a flyer from the dealer that I bought my 2000 Tundra from with an offer to trade it in at a fair price for a new vehicle. The offer was very personalized with VIN #. date of purchase and trade in value ect. I commented to my wife how detailed it was and then threw it in the trash as I bought the truck thinking I would have it until I retire in 10 years. Then I heard national news about the rust problem and crawled underneath and was shocked at the amount of rust on the frame and as another post says the tie rod ends are rusted off on the passenger side. I promptly called the Toyota Customer Experience Center (1-800-331-4331 option #5) to register a complaint about the frame. All other owners should do the same if you haven’t already done so.

  41. Tim ****** says:

    Did you see it on Fox News…That was me;)

  42. Tim ****** says:

    Tri-State Toyota has had my truck since Sept.5. Almost 2 months and no loaner vehicle. Wow that’s real customer service. I have been fighting with Toyota for 14 months. The want me to pay for shocks, leaf spring assemblies, Spare tire mount and sub-bumper assemblies= total $1563 Yah right Toyota!

  43. Marc says:

    Another 2000 Tundra owner here with the frame rusted through. My last 3 vehicles have all been purchased brand new off the lot, and all from Toyota. This truck is my winter driver and the NH winter is approaching quickly (could be literally any day now). If I am forced to junk this truck and obtain a new winter driver while Toyota fiddles then this will most certainly be my last Toyota product. Like most with this problem, I am going to have to make a decision in short order so that safe winter transportation is available. Never did I imagine when I purchased my 2000 Tundra that I’d be facing the prospect of tossing it on the junk heap in 10 years… Yet, that is the fast approaching reality. If I am forced to address the problem (which Toyota knows exists, yet refuses to address as yet) without assistance from Toyota – meaning a buyback or comprehensive frame/associated component replacement – then I will never return to the Toyota brand… Never.

  44. Marc – I can’t blame you. This has got “fiasco” written all over it…Toyota better handle this soon.

  45. Tim – Missed it, but I’m glad a major network is covering this…very good news for Tundra owners with this problem.

  46. Tim ****** says:

    Remember everyone,Pictures can tell a story more than words can describe.Toyota dismantled my truck without my signature allowing them to…if we are patient Toyota will
    Do more to hurt there reputation by treating there customers like crap. I have been treated as such. They think that no one is looking, so take pitures of the rust and show others!

  47. Tim ****** says:

    What REPUTATION? Toyota has built a house of CARDS…not quality trucks.

  48. Kreg says:

    Greg, thanks for the phone #, I called and did the same.

  49. carl says:

    Own an 2000 tundra and the frame is rusted from front to back….. Have file a complaint with NHTSA and our local toyota dealer. The dealer will be inspecting the truck on Nov 3 to see what shape the frame is in. The only problem I have is that if the toyota dealer inspects the frame and says it find. (which its not) just how much long would it last, one or two year at the most? Would this be a year to year inspection until they take it off the road.

    As for toyota replacing the frame on this truck, the only I would go along with this is if Toyota replaces everything that comes in contact with the frame (spring, shocks, bumper mount, ect) everything is rusted to it.

    I myself would be in favor of a buy back from toyota. And hopefully it is something close to the tacomas deals put in place. Don’t get wrong, this truck has 127,000 mile on it and I love the truck and was hoping to hang on to it for at least 5 to 7 more year, but though no way the frame will last more than a year or so…….

  50. carl – Let us know how it goes – I’m looking for info on buy backs, replacements, and new Toyota credits.

  51. carl says:

    WHAT A JOKE…………Toyota inspected the truck today 10/4/09 and told me it was only surface rust and the frame is structurally sound. I pointed out the rust on the bracks that hold on the leaf springs, spare tire and two of the cross members that are eaten half way through and losing peices of metal and they still came back with it was only surface rust.

    The service manager said I would not be able to claim anything on this truck because I have florida plate on it and I, in return told him in that this truck runs both in fla. and western Mass and has only seen 4 winter up north and to rust this badly is a poor reflection on toyota.

    My next step is to talk with toyota tomorrow and than see if I can get a body shop to look at it.

  52. Mickey says:

    What does having a Florida plate have to do with the rusting frame? If it’s rusting through it shouldn’t matter where I live to have this fixed. If that’s the case Toyota is keeping their eyes closed on this and should be taken to court.

  53. carl – I agree with Mickey – the “Florida plate” comment is out of line. I like your plan – send us pics if you can and I’ll publish them.

  54. Jim says:

    I’m another Tundra owner with a badly rusted frame. I’ve had my struts rust away and broke while driving. My oxygen sensors rust out also and some were replaced. I removed my spare tire in fears that it would fall off. I live in Connecticut which uses salt on the roads in the winter. I don’t drive the truck very often and have only 31K miles on it. The body and interior are in excellent condition. I bought this truck for my retirement in 2000 with hopes it would last me forever.
    I’m trading in my 2004 Nissan Altima tomorrow for a Buick Enclave. I wanted to get a Toyota Highlander, but I’m too upset with Toyota to buy another one from them. I’ll still be stuck with my “rust bucket” and don’t know what to do short of waiting for a recall. Any suggestions? I could try to peddle this truck on a trade in with my Nissan, but then some unknowing buyer would get stuck with it.

  55. Jim – If you disclose the rust, the dealer becomes responsible if they re-sell it…but if you do disclose the rust you won’t get much for it. If you hold onto it, Toyota might buy it back someday. Or maybe not. If it’s convenient, send us some pics of the frame. Aside from complaining to NHTSA, Toyota customer service, and your local Toyota dealer, the next-best thing to do is help us generate publicity. Pics are good for that.

  56. John H says:

    I also have a 2000 Tundra which I bought new. I live in Mass. and know the wear the Winters provide for us. My frame is in the same shape most of the people on this site have complained about including having to replace my power steering line that rusted out ($700). I planned on keeping my truck for another 5 years because it runs great but I’m not so sure now. I will probably contact the NHTSA to document another complaint but I’m not holding my breath on any favorable resolution from Toyota. They are big business and we are the “Little People”. I’m hoping Toyota does the right thing.

    • John – Be sure to make a formal complaint to NHTSA just as soon as you can. NHTSA is investigating this problem as a safety issue, and if they find it warrants action, NHTSA will force Toyota to repair your vehicle or buy it back. Filing a complaint with NHTSA is the best chance you have to get your problem fixed.

  57. Greg Decker says:

    Called Toyota Customer Experience Center yesterday to check on status of issue. I have a case file # from my previous call to them in Oct. The agent was very polite (customer service survey after call was offered) and I spent a long time on hold while she supposedly went to check with a technician on the status. I felt like this was done to make me believe I were the only call of the week asking about the rust problem and that no one else was calling. She finally did respond and told me that there was no additional information and that I would be notified by mail if a resolution was offered.

    Someone posted on the Tundra Solution discussion site that “a guy” told him Toyota would issue a statement Nov. 20…tomorrow.

    I’ve been stopping to talk to every Tundra owner I see and inform them about the rust. 5 of the 6 owners did not know about it

  58. Greg – Good to know – thanks for the tip.

  59. mainehunter says:

    I was told that they(toyota) would have some info this week. I called yesterday, they said to call back in a couple of weeks.

    When I called two weeks ago they said the matter would be resolved soon…..we will see.

  60. mainehunter – PickupTrucks.com is reporting that an announcement will be made today…we’ll publish something just as soon as it hits.

  61. RusTundra says:

    From PickUpTruvks.com article…….
    “The information requested by NHTSA in the Information Request dated 10/9/09 is due today, not necessarily a response [to the complaints] from Toyota,” said Brian Lyons, Toyota’s Safety and Quality Communications Manager. “The requirements per the Information Request have been fulfilled.”

    Toyota responded to the NHTSA so we may not hear anything right now.

  62. RusTundra – Agreed. I’m going to post something very soon with some more info, but it doesn’t look like there will be an announcement regarding a fix anytime soon.

  63. Ray says:

    Every 00 or 01 Tundra owner I have spoken to in my area (southern NH) has had similar problems to mine (spare falling off and other welds failing) and they are aware of the investigation. I sneak my truck out for a ride once a week to keep everything from seizing up because it won’t pass inspection and it thus has no value.

  64. Janet says:

    Our truck was sabotaged at the dealer. After initially agreeing to replace our frame in early September they kept our truck at the dealership for 76 days. They demanded we pay them approx $1700.oo up front for frame related parts (also corroded). I can’t tell you how poorly we were treated. Today they called and said it was ready. They were all watching and laughing as my husband walked toward the truck–the rear window was broke and taped with plastic and the spare tire missing. They said we brought it to them like that! We even called the police. Clearly this was retribution for having been interviewed by Fox News and a Boston News Channel about the corrosion concerns for Tundras. We weren’t even home before the check engine light went on!

  65. Mickey says:

    This should be headsup for the rest of the trucks owners out there. Take a video shot of the truck all around and underneath before they take it in. Show the dealership while filming. Dealer may complain about the filming but you need to exercise your rights before letting this happening to you.

  66. Ray – Send us some pics! 🙂 We’ll put them on the site and help publicize this problem.
    Mickey – Good idea.

  67. John H says:

    Woo Hoo. Toyota is recalling the old Tundras. Just hit the air. . .

  68. John H – For sure – let’s hope they step it up to the next level. http://www.tundraheadquarters......rtial-fix/

  69. Kreg says:

    Just the crossmember??? What about the rest of the frame and attaching components? This just does’nt seem right does it?

  70. Kreg – I agree. I hope this is a first step only…

  71. ROBERT WHITTIER says:

    I HAVE A 2002 TUNDRA WITH 50,000 MILES ON IT. IS THEIR A RECALL ON IT?

  72. James Sabourin says:

    I was one of the 20 or so dropped tire Tundra’s that filed with the NHTSA but haven’t heard anything directly from Toyota yet; only their on line announcement. People are going to die unless they get moving! Has anyone received their recalls directly yet?

  73. Jason says:

    Robert – Only if you live in the North East. Otherwise, you’re entitled to a free inspection at your local Toyota dealer. Simply call and schedule an appointment.

  74. Jason says:

    James – Not yet – the official Toyota recall announcement won’t be made until next month. I’m guessing it will drop when it will get the least amount of attention…Valentine’s day perhaps?

  75. Eric says:

    I purchased my 2000 Tundra last year and right now it has 83000 miles on it. I was checking for recalls before I bought it but only found exterior lighting issues. Today, as i was checking my tires out I noticed on my my rear driver side my frame is broken in 2 places and cracked in 2 others. It looks like it just rusted through. I contacted Toyota today and they gave me a case # and told me someone would contact me to go over my next steps. I am glad I found this sight because I am going to file a complaint with the NHTSA as soon as possible.To find out the frame was made in the same plant as the Tacoma is really discouraging. I am hoping they follow suit and just offer a buy back on these trucks.

  76. Dave B says:

    2000 tundra with frame holes.
    I got an oil changed by local garage and they found the holes and thus I have started the phone calls. First to local dealer, “they know of no issues with the trucks”???
    That was sort of strange after reading the website and all the comments. At first I was very pissed off, but called national Toyota as suggested by the dealer. They have now assigned a case number and have scheduled a inspection at the dealer, for the first step in the process. I have a great picture showing the hole in the frame. This is in the front of the passenger tire and is visible when you turn the tire. This was a surprize to the dealer, he now says he has “seen most in the back of the truck”?? So more to follow as I go down this path. The cross member is on recall of the spare tire support.

  77. James Sabourin says:

    The entire Tundra Rust issue seems to be on back burner since Toyota’s other recalls have surfaced. We were told in November that we would be contacted in December or January… and now it’s of course February. Has anyone started a Class Action Suit yet? Hello Lawyers?? I’m still in for over $5,000 from the damage caused by my dropped spare tire and not finished with repairs yet. Not a word from Toyota at this time.

  78. mainehunter says:

    Kelley Blue Book dropped the resale values of recalled Toyotas for the second time in four days Monday, leaving them as much as 4 percent or $300 to $750 lower than a week ago, depending on the model.

    I looked at the value this weekend on my truck and it was 9k, looked it up after reading this and its 8200. This is getting to be crazy! I found the article on yahoo.

  79. Marc says:

    Ok, here’s my update. If you search backward in the thread for my posts you’ll see I’ve been out of touch for awhile. Now, after about 9 or 10 weeks of waiting for a frame, the replacement job is done on my 2000 4×4 limited with 113K miles. I had a loaner for the duration of the job, which took about a week total. Was told that any items that were in the critical dis/reassembly path could be replaced for only the parts cost – that they’d charge me no labor. I’d already had the timing belt and water pump done at 90k and generally taken good care of the vehicle during the decade of ownership, so there wasn’t much that made sense to replace. I did have them replace the rear shocks after they told me they were leaking. The cost was very reasonable, and no charge for labor. This was the only additional work I had done (and paid for).

    Made a quick appointment with my personal independent shop, who I’ve trusted implicitly for many years, afterward. Partially to give the once over to the frame replacement work done by the local dealer, and partly to do the other work I wanted completed subsequent to frame replacement – since I now plan (knock on wood) to hopefully keep the vehicle for another decade if I’m lucky. Got estimates from the local Toyota dealer on the additional parts/work I wanted done, but they couldn’t come close to the what it would cost me to have the work done by my mechanic and/or order the parts myself. I had all new front brakes installed (Posiquiet preloaded calipers and new high quality rotors on both sides), had the rear emergency brake pivot arms (a well-known sore spot for emergency brake lock up when they freeze) cleaned up nicely (and will be sure to exercise the emergency brake periodically to prevent any new freeze), rear drums tightened up, diff fluid checked and tranny fluid changed (diff fluid was nice and clean). Also had Nasta stainless step rails installed that I ordered myself prior from Mechanics-warehouse.com – great price, all stainless mounting hardware, and very nice looking rails. The mechanic liked them so much after the install (including quality of mounting hardware, mounting location, rubber cap to prevent rust from starting at the rail ends, etc.) that he decided to order a set himself for his Ram. I also had new headlight bulbs installed (the old ones had grown mighty dim).

    The one thing the dealer didn’t mention to me that I wasn’t too thrilled about was a torn front CV boot that was bleeding grease. Not sure whether it happened during the frame replacement process or was a pre-existing issue, but either way it’s a bit odd that the dealer never mentioned it (and eventually would obviously have possibly jeopardized the joint and/or the axle). I’m surprised they didn’t give me the option to have them repair/replace it like they did with the front brakes and the shocks (Bilsteins, which I accepted). Anyway, that’s why I took it to my guys afterward, both for the follow-up peace of mind exam and the additional work to be executed.

    Was waiting to post this update until I got the truck back from my mechanic after everything was completed. Just picked it up today and it is running like new all around. No rattles, suspension feels as good as I remember new, tranny smooth as silk, and engine purring. Will plan on taking the mechanic’s suggestion and having the underside coated with the 3M undercoating spray seal stuff in the spring after a good undercarriage wash.

    Any questions let me know. I’m crossing fingers that you guys get helped out the same way that Toyota stood behind the Tundra for me. Overall, I’m very pleased with the way the factory and local dealer service dept. handled the situation. I still am not sold entirely on another Toyota purchase, however, until such time as they stand behind the other Tundra owners who have been unfortunate enough to end up with the same frame rust issue. Just because I was able to push the right buttons and be perceived as a priority customer of sorts this time around (maybe due to 3 consecutive new Toyota/Lexus vehicle purchases, proper button pushing, or otherwise) is no guarantee that it would necessarily happen that way again. Bottom line is that if Toyota stands behind the Tundra en-masse so that many other unlucky owners aren’t forced into having to junk their trucks then I’m likely to retain the Toyota brand at the top of my likely consideration list. The truck has been very good to me on the whole, and I don’t think it likely that any other make is more trustworthy in a electrical/mechanical sense (at least compared to my 2000 1st gen Limited). The frame rust issue was/is a major letdown, obviously, but Toyota making good on the gaffe goes a long way in my book. The only thing that will go the entirety of the way, in all honestly, however, is if other affected Tundra owners are treated the same…

  80. Jason says:

    Marc – Thanks for the update. It is odd that the dealer didn’t notice the torn CV boot. Glad to hear it’s going well – let us know if anything changes.

  81. Eric says:

    Great update Marc. I am curious though if they just offered to replace your frame or did they also offer to buy it back.

  82. Marc says:

    They never offered a buyback, Eric. And I did explicitly ask if that was an option back when the frame replacement offer was raised. I was told it was not.

    Honestly, I wouldn’t likely have even considered accepting a buyback unless the amount was ridiculous. I need a winter driver anyway, and the truck has truly been very good to me since I purchased it back in late 1999. I can’t imagine finding a more reliable vehicle overall, now that the frame rust issue is in the rear view mirror (for me, anyway).

    Again, here’s hoping the rest of the Tundra owners with this problem get the same kind of support from Toyota that I did…

  83. MJB says:

    I’m sold on Toyota. I will be buying one in the next month. The way they have the use it and return it policy is outstanding! I figured I will keep it for 7 years and take it back for atleast 110% of the retail value. That is a outstanding deal! I I’m debating on weather to perform the recommended maintenance or not. I could just say I did and that will be good enough from what I read about the oil sludge report. This company is apparently all about taking care of customers, they go well beyond what the warranty states.

  84. Jason says:

    MJB – Sounds awesome. Send us some pics.

  85. ROBERT WHITTIER says:

    BEFORE I MADE THE COMENT ON 1/19/ 2010 I CALLED HERB CHAMBERS WHERE I PUCHASED THE TRUCK IN 2002 AND THAY KNEW NOTHING OF A RECALL AND IF THEY DO I WOULD BE CONTACTED IF THEIR WAS ONE. I HAVE NOT HAD A CALLBACK AS OF THIS DATE 2/17/2010! I GESS I WILL HAVE TO WAIT UNTIL THE BOTTOM OF THE TRUCK FALLS OUT. I BELIVED HERB CHAMBERS WAS MORE RESPONSIBLE THAN THIS TO HIS CUSTOMERS !

  86. Eric says:

    Robert, there is a recall on just the rear crossmember. Call Herb Chambers back and tell them you want an inspection. If it is worse than just the crossmember like mine call Toyota directly and get a case #. I have an inspection on my frame within the next week by a rep. of Toyota. Also, take pics of your rusted frame because the more evidence we have the better.

  87. Jason says:

    Robert – That dealership sounds awful. Anyone answering the phone at a Toyota service department anywhere in the northeast should know about this issue – there’s no excuse for a Boston-area dealership to say they’ve never heard of this recall.

  88. Michael Brockman says:

    New to this site…. I have a 2000 Tundra with 97K purchased new, that is now sitting at the local dealer. Major rust and failure of rear frame supports. Just discovered today. Dealer check the truck out and informed me it was not safe to drive, gave me a loaner car and said they would be in touch. The dealer did indicate that Toyota would most likely offer a buy back for this truck. Frame is in really bad condition. I agree with Jason, I think dealers all know about this issue. As soon as I mentioned rust, frame and failure, they ask me to bring it in ASAP.

  89. Dave B says:

    Update from my first comment from Feb. 8th 2000 tundra.
    My truck has a “case #”, dealer took pictures of the frame holes and we also found more areas when pictures were taken. The cross member has a 4″ hole near the brake line block. All pictures were submitted to regional rep and within 1 week I was called back to dealer, for more pictures of the outside and inside of the truck? Local dealer has been very good to deal with and supportive. I called yesterday for follow up, but dealer has not heard anything yet? With all the current bad press I really don’t know what the odds are for fix or buy out? Local dealer thinks they will replace frame?? I’m lucky to a point that it is not bad enough to drive and I still have 2 months before state inspection. More to follow????

  90. Michael Brockman says:

    Update from Feb 22nd post. I contacted Toyota (35 minutes wait to talk to a real person) Toyota rep. was very helpful and opened a claim for my truck. I mentioned that the dealer had another truck with similar frames issues and that owner was still in a rental car (2 months!). He was very surprised to hear that. He indicated that if customers contacted Toyota and opened a claim, resolution to the issue was fairly quick? The frame decay on my truck is really bad, not jsut the rear cross member. We shall see how it is handled. I have also contacted the NHTSA via email and will keep them posted on my issue.
    Thanks to all who have posted, I found the information very helpful in working through my issues with Toyota.

  91. Michael Brockman says:

    Recieved a call today from Toyota. Informed me that the safety recall is for the rear cross memeber only and that frame damage due to rust has yet to be addressed. He indicated that Toyota is handling trucks like mine on a case by case basis. By the end of the conversation I had the feeling that Toyota may not stand behind the failed frame……………..

  92. Eric says:

    Keep us informed Michael, I am going through my case right now. An inspector from Toyota is supposed to go to see my truck today and write a report and send it to Toyota of North America. I am hoping they resolve it fairly quickly after that. I am going to call the Attorny General of Connecticut if they dont do whats right. It is blatently obvious that our frames are having the same issue as the Tacoma and if all the recalls were not going on now I believe the truck frame would be recalled. Everyone on this site has to stand together and make sure Toyota does the right thing for each and every one of us.

  93. Renny says:

    I posted a comment back in early October about my Tundra. I was one of the original complaints to NTSB about my spare falling off while driving and additional severe frame rust. Filed with Toyota at the same time. Have been waiting for the recall notice but got nothing. Called dealer last week and have an appointment next week to “evaluate” the frame rust. The truck failed instpection in September and has been sitting in my driveway since. I fire it up once a week. I think among other things there is a problem with the steering linkage so I am having it towed to dealer. It seems that Toyota is helping some owners and not others. I suppose the sqeaky wheels are getting the greece.

  94. Michael Brockman says:

    I believe the dealer has a lot to do with how fast and how well this issue is handled. My dealer (located in Central PA) has a meeting set up with the District Service rep for this area to inspect my truckon Friday the 26th. I made the initial complaint on Monday the 22nd. That is fast response time. I have been making calls and writing emails to everybody I can. (thanks to those on this site who provided contatc info) A pain in the butt, although I think it does help. I just received an email from the dealer informing me that the dealership and Toyota will stand behind their trucks. How far behind, I’m not sure yet. This is turning into a lesson on comsumer activism.

  95. Jason says:

    Renny – Michael is right – the dealer is almost certainly holding up the progress of your case.
    ##
    To no one in particular: The key to getting Toyota to review your case is to…
    – Call your dealer
    – Call Toyota’s customer service number
    – Rinse, wash, repeat. Call, call again, and then call some more.
    ##
    The calls should ALWAYS be cordial (yelling and screaming won’t help), but the calls should be frequent. That’s the only way to get the dealers to act (they contact Toyota, who then authorizes either a fix or a buy-back). The dealership service manager is the key.

  96. Marc says:

    I want to concur adamantly with what Jason just wrote. The dealership service manager is the key… This is precisely correct. While a coordinated contact effort with Toyota corporate is also necessary, IMO, the real progress will be most likely when you’ve got the local dealership lobbying on your behalf. I am convinced that this had a good deal to do with how/why I ended up with a frame replacement. You may want to try another dealership if your local service manager appears indifferent or lazy, and you don’t feel is actively working on your behalf. If you go to another one then whether or not you originally purchased the Tundra there might become a factor (though it really shouldn’t)… Of course this is neither here nor there if you purchased the truck used, anyway. Either way, the dealer that does the frame replacement is going to get reimbursed by corporate for having done the work. Who knows, maybe some of the dealerships don’t want to deal with the whole frame replacement issue (I’ve heard that corporate reimbursement isn’t particularly lucrative for these jobs) and thus aren’t compelled to lobby on behalf of affected Tundra owners… Just a possibility. Of course, the dealers don’t stand to benefit much at all on a buyback either (unless there is some corporate incentive provided to purchase another Toyota product)…

  97. Jason says:

    Marc – Having worked in dealerships for years, I can tell you that your insights are spot on. Some dealership service managers know how to work the system and grease the rails to get approval for this type of thing, and some are just punching a clock. Either way, they WILL respond with the right amount of persistence. Working both the dealer and Toyota’s customer service line can be effective, but it also helps a great deal to involve the dealership’s general manager (GM) if and/or when you feel your case isn’t being taken seriously. The average GM at a Toyota dealership is a highly qualified business person…they will take care of customers so long as they’re reasonable. Considering Toyota has a recall on these frames, it’s reasonable to ask for a replacement or a buy-back if your frame is deemed unsafe.

  98. anonymous says:

    great adivice

  99. Michael Brockman says:

    My truck was inspected on Tuesday March 9th by the regional service manager for Toyota. I was ask a boatload of questions as well. Like did I tow a boat or heavy trailer? Did I store my truck under roof or outside? etc., etc.
    I called Toyota today March 12th, and they informed me that they are sending letters to truck owners concerning frame failure beyond the rear cross member. It seems that they are still going to address each frame claim on its own merits, BUT they do agree that there is a bigger issue at hand. My conversations with Toyota lead me to think that they are going to fix some and buy some back. At any rate, It is very important to get a case number from Toyota and work with your dealer. Said many times, but it is true. You need to work all the angles on this. And I fully agree with Jason that yelling and screaming does not get you anything but high blood pressure and less cooperation from the local dealer.

  100. Jason says:

    Michael – That’s interesting news. If you have a chance, can you send me a copy of the letter you receive? I have no intention of publishing it, but I’d like to see what Toyota is telling you and others. admin@tundraheadquarters.com (I’ve got a fax too if you need that). Thanks!

  101. anonymous says:

    Well I truly hope that the letters are coming I have been in a loaner for over 30 days and the last conversation I had with any one from toyota both at the corporate level as well as dealership level was don’t call us we will call you. I have always been overly nice to these folks and I just hope it pays off.

  102. kreg says:

    anonymous, I have been in a rental since mid Dec. and I was told by dealership to push the issue with Toyota corp. since they were not getting anywhere with the regional rep.. I have since done so and was told exactly the samething!! I even stressed buyback option in lieu of them paying for this seemingly never ending rental. Just hope for the best I guess ?

  103. Michael Brockman says:

    Anyone seeing the conflicting news? I saw a couple reports that Toyota was expanding the Tundra cross member recall to all states. Yesterday (the 16th) I saw an article out of Canada that stated Toyota retracted the earlier statement. Very confusing……

  104. Jason says:

    Michael – The recall was expanded across the country – no truth to the rumor that it’s been retracted to my knowledge.

  105. Michael Brockman says:

    Jason,

    I read the article on the CBC website which is the National Public Radio station for Canada.

    http://www.cbc.ca/consumer/sto.....ml?ref=rss

  106. Jason says:

    Michael – This is one of those situations where the devil is in the diction…Toyota didn’t technically expand the recall. They did, however, extend a “special service campaign” for the same issue nation wide. So we’re both right, but you are more right than me! 🙂

    Good link – thanks.

  107. Scott LeRoy says:

    My 2002 Tundra is @ a dealership as of yesterday. the dealership is telling me that my rear cross member is fine. However the rest of my truck is severely corroded/rusted out. There telling me that my truck needs about $4500 in repairs. The Point, my Tundra passed their inspection. So I laughed and said, would you put money into this truck if the rest of frame/ under body is going to be junk in a year? The dealership manager said no. I want every Tundra owner to know that this rust problem is much bigger than a cross member recall. It’s the entire under body. I’m in the process of meeting a Toyota rep next week in person to go over my truck. I also did the NHTSA form online, and I will be contacting the Federal Trade commission( 877-382-4357)which is for complaining / discussed with the dealership It self.

  108. Jason says:

    Scott – Good idea on contacting the FTC – it certainly can’t hurt. I think Toyota’s Tundra frame-rust recall is a half-measure (at best), and I would encourage you to do your best to get Toyota customer service involved as well as the dealership’s general manager.

  109. Scott LeRoy says:

    Well it just got worst. A Toyota case manager called me, and said my truck passed and there is nothing at this time their going to do. I said what about preventing the underbody for rusting more. She said, we are not going to spray a undercoat on your truck, and all damage from corrosion your truck is my responsibility. Toyota only does a undercoat if your truck fails???? I need help on this. And I think Toyoto customer service is weak

  110. Jason says:

    Scott – Did you say your truck needs $4500 worth of rust repairs, or other work? If it’s that much rust damage, it’s hard to argue that there’s no issue. As for undercoating, Toyota has indicated to NHTSA that they will spray frames on Tundras with some sort of rust-inhibiting compound, but whether or not that’s “undercoating” remains to be seen. I would advise you consider contacting NHTSA again, and I would also suggest your state’s Auto Dealer Licensing Board. Toyota has a recall and a national special service campaign for this issue – the dealer should be able to get you *something* in this climate. If not, they’re not working…and the DLB’s involvement often moves your problems to the top of the dealer’s list.

  111. Eric says:

    Scott, it is time to get an attorney. Also you should contact your states attorney general and put a bug in their ear. I am waiting for Toyota to get back to me right now and if what they come up with is unsatisfactory, that is exactly what I am going to do.

  112. Michael Brockman says:

    March 26 came and went and I have not recieved anything from Toyota. I spoke with my dealer today and he informed me that he thinks Toyota is going to offer to fix the frame. He really does not think there will be any offer to buy back trucks. I guess the only good news at this point in time is my rental is being upgraded from a Chevy Cobalt to a full size pickup.

  113. Tom says:

    Like Scott above I have a 2002 Tundra, mine with about 65000 miles on it. I’ve had regular maintenance, and have frequently had the undercarriage washed after heavy salted roads, when the weather cleared up. Even before news of the recall I noticed rust build-up on the rear axle, especially in the center where there is rust rot on the very bottom . Also rusty “springs.” I knew from having other vehicles for many years of driving, that this rust was quite unusual and had to be a product flaw or manufacturer error of improper undercoating or something. I too have a lot of smaller brackets and bolts that are clearly “frozen” with rust. While I don’t yet have the extent of rust others describe (except as I mentioned above), I am certainly headed in that direction. While I haven’t had the Toyota inspection yet, I have talked with the service manager at the local dealer and with Toyota Customer Service. I will no doubt get the “pass” stamp that Scott got, despite the other rust. The crossbar itself seems fine, interestingly enough. I plan to ask an independent mechanic I trust for his opinion on the extent of rust “damage” and what will be the best treatment for prevention of further rusting. Like many of the other bloggers, I feel the truck runs fantastic, and I hoped to get many more years out of it. But I will hesitate putting a lot of coin into general maintenance of something that will be rusting out from under my a– in a couple of years.

  114. Thom says:

    Picked my 2003 tundra up from the dealer the price went from1500 up to2035 dollars. the dealer said to hold my reciept just in case toyota does anything in the future. they have had this problem before but toyota isnt doing anything. part of that 2035 dollars was for a used rear differential.

  115. george glann says:

    I have a 2000 tundra and was told by two reputable mechanics in 2009 that the frame was in bad shape and might not be safe vto drive

    In jan 2010 toyota inspected and took pictures of the frame and told me someo ne would be contacting me and so far I have heard nothing except I am due for maint. and would you be interested in buying a new toyota.

    I take good care of my truck wash it and garage it but I think toyota has blown me off with all the other problems I don’t know if I should drive the truck or not

  116. Michael Brockman says:

    I recieved a call from Toyota on Monday, April 19th informing me that Toyota is going to pursue frame repair / replacement on the affected Tundras. The person I spoke to indicated that the “official” notice would be out mid-May to early June. He did not indicate when the work may be completed. I did pursue a a buy back option with the dealer as well as Toyota. They seem intent on fixing these trucks. I have been in a rental (paid by Toyota) since 02/22/10. I know that some of you have been in rentals much longer. Has anyone else heard this?
    George, Don’t know if you have contacted Toyota and have been assigned a case number, but that is something you should do. The number is 1-800-331-4331. It will take a while to speak to someone, but it is important to do. Also, if your truck is unsafe to drive, Toyota should put you in a rental. I ask for a truck and they put me in full sized pickup.

  117. Dave B says:

    I gave up on my 2000 tundra yesterday! I called again asking for claim answers (from Feb.8th) and person said I have no answers until next month! The state inspection was to be next month and I did not want to take anymore chances! Needing to here something on the what “IF” on my truck. Ended up getting 5500 for trade in at HONDA! Bought a real nice Ridgeline 2007, of course a good payment along with it. Ended up getting bumper to bumper coverage for the life of loan or 100,000 mile. At least I now know I am covered! It was a good deal but costly!
    I wish all you well in the untold stories to come from your tundra’s. I did like the truck, but felt to much stress not to get rid of it!! The toyota options for trucks were higher than the Honda. Toyota still does not want to deal, some loyalty from them, toward customer!!!

  118. James Sabourin says:

    Dear Tundra Headquarters,
    This email is and update and in reference to my ‘accident’ with my 2002 Tundra while towing my 5th wheel Trailer on 9-13-09
    Today (5-3-10), I received the good news that the Massachusetts Insurance Commission has found in my favor – as not being more that 50% at fault in the accident involving my Tundra’s spare tire. Though they did give me a hard time about any ‘evidence’ that I presented using the internet (“Because it can be manipulated” Blogs, Comments – even the NHTSA Site!) they did take my paperwork and references including the NHTSA pages on the recall. No explanations were given, but the finding was in my favor and for the life of me; I couldn’t see how it could be otherwise! Thanks to Tundra Headquarters, the NHTSA and others; I was successful with this and avoid six years of expensive insurance penalties.
    On April 22nd, I got the 5th Wheel Trailer returned to me with the extensive damages corrected. As far as I can see at this point, the work was well done and nothing stands out as ‘wrong’. I am still awaiting the promised check from Toyota to cover my insurance deductable, but expect it soon. Ironically, today I also received the official recall notice (90M) from Toyota!
    Finally, this seems to all be coming to an end and I’ll be able to deal with other issues in life! I want to once again thank you at Tundra Headquarters & the NHTSA for providing me with the information, encouragement and all of the knowledge that I needed. Without your assistance, I doubt that I would have been strong enough to successfully fight with Toyota, Massachusetts, and the Insurance Commission all at once. While the local insurance commision questions ‘postings’; they have no idea how accurate your information and advice has been. It is my hope that others who fight this kind of battle will be as successful.

  119. Jason says:

    James – Awesome! Thanks for the update – glad to hear that you got somewhere with the insurance company. Tell your friends! 🙂

  120. george glann says:

    I received some good news today from the toyota dealer they have agreed to replace the frame on my 2000 tundra!

    I was told it will be a few weeks before they get the frame,etc to do the job and I may get a loaner .

    the best news yet . the truck is otherwise in good shape

  121. Michael Brockman says:

    While I have not gotten any “official” notice from Toyota on a frame replacement, I was at the Dealership ealier this week and they had four new frames stacked up behind the shop. There were also 4 or 5 discarded frames there as well. Is anyone hearing if there are additional costs involved with a whole frame replacement? I know that some early replacements involved out of pocket expense.

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