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You could say that Toyota trucks are some of the best, but even the most reliable trucks still need care and maintenance. Find out what breaks on the Toyota Tundra pickup truck the most and how you can fix these issues. Some Toyota Tundra problems are easier to fix than others, primarily if the automaker has issued a recall already.

What breaks on the Toyota Tundra? Don’t overlook a ticking noise

One of the most commonly reported issues with the Toyota Tundra is a ticking noise from the failed exhaust manifold. RepairPal is a common place for drivers to report issues, such as the ticking noise. This happens mainly on the V8 models and could sound similar to an exhaust leak. A loud ticking noise from the engine area will be evident, and the ticking is even louder when the engine is cold.

At the time of publication, 262 Toyota Tundra drivers have reported this issue over 13 model years. Tundra trucks from before 2000 do not seem to be impacted, likely due to a different engine setup. One of the biggest bummers about the ticking noise is that fixing it can cost upwards of $1,000. If the ticking noise is present and the exhaust manifold needs replacing, it is more expensive. Sometimes fixing the exhaust manifold gasket can remedy the issue, which costs around $600 to repair.

The good news is that Toyota trucks have been proven to be good investments over the years, thanks to the high resale value. If you keep up with maintenance and keep the Tundra in good shape, it should hold its value quite well.

What breaks on the Toyota Tundra depends on how hard it works

More than 200 people reported that the lower ball joint is something that breaks on the Toyota Tundra prematurely, especially if you do a lot of towing. Toyota and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration actually issued a recall for the Front Suspension Lower Ball Joints on Toyota Tundra trucks from 2004 to 2007. There is a second recall for a similar issue on earlier Tundras, from 2002 to 2004 models.

The lower ball joint wearing out can give the Tundra a rough and uncomfortable ride. It can also cause other unintended issues if it breaks on the Toyota Tundra while driving. Some drivers noted less of an issue, but there was a loud clunking noise when turning. Either way, this problem can range from $300 to $600 for a replacement. Others noted a wheel alignment was part of the fix, which usually runs under $200.

If you have decreased fuel economy, check the Secondary Air Pump

Find out what breaks on the Toyota Tundra seen here in 2017
A 2017 Toyota Tundra | Raymond Boyd/Getty Images

Some drivers complained that when the Secondary Air Pump malfunctioned, the Tundra started running rough and fuel economy decreased. The pickup truck also had driveability issues, emissions problems, and a check engine light. Such problems are more common on older Toyota Tubdras, but replacing the Air Pump could remedy the problem. This can be another expensive issue, especially if the air pump needs replacing. Many drivers are quoting a cost of $2,000 or so, and Toyota has not issued a recall so far.

If you have a Tundra experiencing one of these problems, check out the Vehicle Identification Number (VIN) lookup from the NHTSA. This can help track down any recalls issued for your truck and hopefully fix the issue. Some common Toyota Tundra problems have easy fixes that you can find on YouTube or RepairPal. That is always preferred if you can avoid an expensive repair at the dealership.

Check out our review of the 2023 Toyota Tundra Capstone to get more information about the most recent version of this truck.


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