I've had mine since 2005 and runs great. My problem is that about a year ago, I noticed that on smooth freeways, the front end vibrates at 70+ mph (it is 65+ mph on the speedo since I have bigger tires). Since then, as I've tried to fix it, I've noticed that the tires seem to be cupping from it. Also after a balance, the vibration goes away for about a few days and then returns. The alignment stays good maximum a month.
I do regular alignments and balances every 3 months since I have a Fabtech lift (bought the truck with it... would have rather used an alternative product that does it the proper way). And I do regular rotations every 6 months max.
Before we get too far into this, I want to admit that this is my first car and I try to baby it but I don't know enough to properly tackle every problem. My brother who owned 2 Tacomas has been a big help and my dad also but this time, they don't know what could be the problem.
The first time I tried to tackle the problem, I took it to 2 shops and the first's diagnosis was that my wheels are bent; during that visit they did my alignment and balance but said they can't do it anymore until my wheels are replaced. The second shop (which I went to a week after the first) couldn't find anything wrong with it but said they wanted to check the balance again. It was out so they did the balance and sent me on my way. The shaking started a week after the second shop fixed the balance. Therefore, I figured that my bent wheels were causing the vibration. Fast foreward to a week ago; I bought brand new wheels (profile pic shows old wheels). I feel like such a schmuck! It didn't solve the problem and my vibration is only getting worse...
I took my truck in a few days ago to the shop that told me about my bent wheels and had them do align and balance again. I also told them that I replaced the wheels and told them to look at my truck again. They said that my stabilizer bushings, rack and pinion bushings, and the bushings tied to component # 12 on the attached image are shot and fixing them would fix the vibration. That seems expensive; I decided to get a second opinion that day.
The next shop said that the rack and pinion bushing does need replacing but others are fine. They said total I need rack and pinion bracket bushing and all tie rods (4). They said that since my truck has so many miles (195,000+), it may be going out of alignment quickly because of the tie rods going bad.
Now I really don't know what to do. Has anybody here had similar problems with their truck? What did you do to fix it?
Any help is appreciated!