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Old 05-06-2012, 01:48 PM   #1
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Beginner in need of upgrade suggestions.

Hi, I own a 2000 (auto) 2.4l taco and am going to be doing work to it. It only has 36k original miles and spent a lot of time garaged. I read the mpg thread already and have made many of those suggested upgrades a priority. If anything about my cars figures seem odd it's because the previous owner had ordered the car directly from the factory, customized.

Considering that this truck is all stock, what are upgrades I should make to simply ensure its "health" per se? I was thinking of replacing the suspension, the engine cooling parts, the spark plugs and wiring that wear due to time and getting a tune up along with replacing my filters with AFE's. I read that I should also replace my exhaust system, as the manufactures put in poor systems. I wasn't sure if this was true or not, and I really don't want something that's all noise. Not trying to knock anyone but I dislike car upgrades that are all "boom" and no "vroom".

I also contacted Toyota to have my car inspected for the frame recall. Which makes me wonder if there are any other parts of this car that Toyota didn't do so hot on, that should be replaced.

Also, I couldn't find any threads that had any info about tire size/life size effects on mpg/torque. If there are any I would appreciate a link.

One last thing, what brand/model should I go with for the cool air intake and for a brush guard (to protect if I were to hit a deer. There are many, to say the least, where I live)? I want to stick to quality parts, so I understand I'm going to be doing part with a lot of money.

Thanks for your help, and just want to say from what I've read this is a really great community. Thanks for building it up to what it is now.
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Old 05-06-2012, 02:26 PM   #2
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I'll only speak to the brush guard to protect your truck from deer.

Brush guards are usually damage multipliers... meaning they do more damage to your truck in a collision than they do protect it.

For the money, you're better off spending a bit more and getting a beefy plate bumper.
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Old 05-06-2012, 02:38 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Madjik_Man View Post
I'll only speak to the brush guard to protect your truck from deer.

Brush guards are usually damage multipliers... meaning they do more damage to your truck in a collision than they do protect it.

For the money, you're better off spending a bit more and getting a beefy plate bumper.
I was originally looking at a plate bumper but struggled to find one for 2000 Tacomas. Will I have to make one or mod one to fit my truck? Also thanks for your posts, I have seen you a lot across the forums and you have contributed a lot of knowledge/content to this website. Thanks for being so active on these forums.
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Old 05-06-2012, 02:43 PM   #4
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I like the AFE Pro dry S filter, most do. Have you looked into the deckplate mod in place of a CAI? Cost you something like 6-12 bucks and gives ya some pep.

As far as exhaust, stock will suffice as far as I know but opening things up or replacing everything can have gains. Depends on your budget. You can get everything from headers to a high flow cat and cat back exhaust. I would recommend Doug Thorley for headers and MagnaFlow for the rest. The debate on this topic isn't whether it gives you a small gain in HP and mpg but whether it's worth it to you. If you end up getting 2mpg better and save X dollars a year but all the upgrades cost much more. . . That's up to you.

Taller/wider tires are going to result in loss of mpg torque etc. If you go significantly bigger this can be remedied by regearing. If you're not going to off road a lot and are mpg conscious I would advise going with stock size or maybe one inch bigger. This is all personal opinion mind you.

Replacing shocks and leafs etc can be beneficial on an older truck but it sounds like yours is pretty young on miles. Waiting won't hurt anything there unless you're wanted to lift/offroad.

Instead of a brush guard, if you'd like a little more protection go for a plate bumper like stated above. However, if you're like me and have no use for all that dead weight you can look into a tube bumper. There are light bars that go over your stock bumper as well as full tube bumper replacements.
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Old 05-06-2012, 02:47 PM   #5
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Originally Posted by wolfpack_5150 View Post
I agree with the brush bar comment........I've seen them fold back and destroy the grill, lights, and hood on even minor accidents. Last 1 I seen was a friends xterra.
Yeah I was concerned about the metal they use, and even more so how they could cause unnecessary damage to the frame. It's a weird thing to try and deal with deer. As far as I know you have two options: either your car is low enough to make them roll, or you have to be able to deck them and drive over them without causing damage to your undercarriage (I think thats what it's called, I'm still learning).
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Old 05-06-2012, 03:06 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BuzzardsGottaEat View Post
I like the AFE Pro dry S filter, most do. Have you looked into the deckplate mod in place of a CAI? Cost you something like 6-12 bucks and gives ya some pep.

As far as exhaust, stock will suffice as far as I know but opening things up or replacing everything can have gains. Depends on your budget. You can get everything from headers to a high flow cat and cat back exhaust. I would recommend Doug Thorley for headers and MagnaFlow for the rest. The debate on this topic isn't whether it gives you a small gain in HP and mpg but whether it's worth it to you. If you end up getting 2mpg better and save X dollars a year but all the upgrades cost much more. . . That's up to you.

Taller/wider tires are going to result in loss of mpg torque etc. If you go significantly bigger this can be remedied by regearing. If you're not going to off road a lot and are mpg conscious I would advise going with stock size or maybe one inch bigger. This is all personal opinion mind you.

Replacing shocks and leafs etc can be beneficial on an older truck but it sounds like yours is pretty young on miles. Waiting won't hurt anything there unless you're wanted to lift/offroad.

Instead of a brush guard, if you'd like a little more protection go for a plate bumper like stated above. However, if you're like me and have no use for all that dead weight you can look into a tube bumper. There are light bars that go over your stock bumper as well as full tube bumper replacements.
I just looked at the Deck plate mod and I will deffintely be doing that, thank you. And I'm happy to hear that I'm not on the clock to replace my shocks and whatnot.
Also thank you for the recommendation for exhaust brands, it's a combination of getting a better mpg/torque along with just having a boost against competition when reselling.
How much weight does the plate bumper actually put on? The loss is 2% mpg per 100 lbs if I remember correctly.

I'm worried about hitting a deer simply because it will fuck my shit due to how high my engine sits. Is there really anything I can do besides just keeping a watchout the best I can? Or will the plate bumper be an efficient defense?
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Old 05-06-2012, 03:12 PM   #7
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I'm not even sure if they work, but for $2.99, do this little speaker looking things that give off a sound warn deer? Just throwing out ideas..
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Old 05-06-2012, 03:19 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Dewey7015 View Post
I'm not even sure if they work, but for $2.99, do this little speaker looking things that give off a sound warn deer? Just throwing out ideas..
Yeah, people have those around my area in their yards and stuff. I was considering them but what worries me is the fact that it will just cause them to run, in no specific direction. Car lights usually seduce them and make them visible from the reflection of their eyes. I could cause more harm than help by scaring them before I even see them. But, still, thanks. I haven't really looked into it and I could be wrong.
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Old 05-06-2012, 03:24 PM   #9
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Originally Posted by Milkman929 View Post
Dewey
Yeah, people have those around my area in their yards and stuff. I was considering them but what worries me is the fact that it will just cause them to run, in no specific direction. Car lights usually seduce them and make them visible from the reflection of their eyes. I could cause more harm than help by scaring them before I even see them. But, still, thanks. I haven't really looked into it and I could be wrong.
I don't have much to add other than welcome to the site and do you see that little button in the bottom right hand corner of the responses that say's "quote". If you click that it'll let you quote the person you want to respond to and just help keep the thread flowing easier and keep the confusion down. The one that looks like this.
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Old 05-06-2012, 03:27 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by Warhorseforever View Post
I don't have much to add other than welcome to the site and do you see that little button in the bottom right hand corner of the responses that say's "quote". If you click that it'll let you quote the person you want to respond to and just help keep the thread flowing easier and keep the confusion down. The one that looks like this.
Yeah, my bad. Thanks for the welcome, and I'll get on that right away.
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Old 05-06-2012, 03:32 PM   #11
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Hi, its hard to protect a car/truck from a deer hit, I have seen a few.
no matter how hard you armor the bumper if they roll over and land on the hood and windshield your screwed. Years ago back in NC my uncle had a 74 Lincoln towncar, and one night he hit a 8 point buck, and it landed on the hood and did about 3500.00 damage in 79 dollars....(ruined the rack) and that car was a tank... I would try for good headlights/fog lights at night and try to be careful.
as for mods one thing to check might be all the bushings on the truck, even with low miles they can get dry rot from age.
good luck with the truck, take care of her and she will last a long time.
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Old 05-06-2012, 03:40 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dewey7015 View Post
I'm not even sure if they work, but for $2.99, do this little speaker looking things that give off a sound warn deer? Just throwing out ideas..
Those whistles are a joke IMO.
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Old 05-06-2012, 04:11 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robertgeejr1 View Post
Hi, its hard to protect a car/truck from a deer hit, I have seen a few.
no matter how hard you armor the bumper if they roll over and land on the hood and windshield your screwed. Years ago back in NC my uncle had a 74 Lincoln towncar, and one night he hit a 8 point buck, and it landed on the hood and did about 3500.00 damage in 79 dollars....(ruined the rack) and that car was a tank... I would try for good headlights/fog lights at night and try to be careful.
as for mods one thing to check might be all the bushings on the truck, even with low miles they can get dry rot from age.
good luck with the truck, take care of her and she will last a long time.
Yeah, I guess I'm just going to have to come to terms with fate. I'll definitely be picking up fog lights/improved headlights though. I'll have the bushings looked at by a friend asap too. Thanks for your 2 cents.
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Old 05-06-2012, 04:21 PM   #14
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also here around chicago, I see 3 types of bush guards on suv's, one is brand new, the second is dented and smashed from bad drivers and suv is dented and the third is the rusted out, and chrome is flaking off from the winter salt.

save your money on those.
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Old 05-06-2012, 08:03 PM   #15
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Brushguard...






VS plate bumper...








idk about you..im ready to hit damn near anything head on with the bumper..brush guard that attaches to only the bottom and is suspended out in front of the truck..eh..not so much..

as for exhaust, only replace the muffler, that will net you a bit more power. don't bother with the rest of it.

do the deckplate mod for the intake

get a real suspention lift, OME is a great ready to go kit from Wheelers offroad.

as for tires..the bigger you get..the less low end torque you have..fair enough?

you can always regear the diffs to compensate for torque loss, but unless you do lots of offroading in slow rocky sections, its not needed.
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Old 05-06-2012, 08:05 PM   #16
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Monte... always ready to picture whore given any opportunity







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Old 05-06-2012, 08:19 PM   #18
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hey..i think its a good way to show the difference

and your just jelly of my front end
Sour grape jelly, to be exact
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Old 05-06-2012, 08:25 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Robertgeejr1 View Post
Hi, its hard to protect a car/truck from a deer hit, I have seen a few.
no matter how hard you armor the bumper if they roll over and land on the hood and windshield your screwed. Years ago back in NC my uncle had a 74 Lincoln towncar, and one night he hit a 8 point buck, and it landed on the hood and did about 3500.00 damage in 79 dollars....(ruined the rack) and that car was a tank... I would try for good headlights/fog lights at night and try to be careful.
as for mods one thing to check might be all the bushings on the truck, even with low miles they can get dry rot from age.
good luck with the truck, take care of her and she will last a long time.

My work truck is a dodge 2500 diesel with a ranch hand bumper and I hit a 10 pt buck at 65 and the only thing I had to do was fix 2 fog lights and get a car wash. I feel like there would be more damage with a brush guard.. IMO
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Old 05-06-2012, 08:42 PM   #20
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well you were very lucky, in 1997 in clearwater florida I saw a old man walk out infront of chevy blazer with a bush guard and it flipped him through the windshield. (ended my vacation right then and there..checked out and went home). Its just luck, bad or good on how accidents work out, I just wanted him to know that its not foolproof, and to still be very careful in the fall/winter when deer are roaming.
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