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Toyota Tacoma Won’t Start: Common Causes and How to Fix

Toyota Tacoma Won’t Start: Common Causes and How to Fix

A Toyota Tacoma is a nice vehicle to own. However, they can come with some problems, especially if they are bought used instead of a new or an older model with many miles on it. What happens though if your Toyota Tacoma won’t start and what are some common causes and fixes?

The most common reason a Toyota Tacoma won’t start is that the truck is in the wrong gear or has a dead battery. Other reasons include fuel issues like a clogged injector or faulty fuel pump. Improper maintenance and mechanical issues could also be causes.

There are some details about what causes these things to happen and what you can do about them. This article will help you figure out what is causing your Toyota Tacoma to not start and some fixes.

What Would Cause a Toyota Tacoma Not to Start?

There are several reasons why a Toyota Tacoma will not start. After figuring out what is causing the issues there are some ways to help fix your Toyota to make it run.

Let’s look at the reasons why a Toyota Tacoma won’t start.

  • It’s in the wrong gear.
  • The battery is altered or faulty.
  • It is low on fuel
  • There are some mechanical problems.
  • They are not being maintained or kept up.

How would these interrupt the way that these cars start? What are some things to find and fix the problems?

It is in the Wrong Gear.

Sometimes we get in a hurry, and it may slip our mind about putting our car or truck in the right gear before we turn it off.

However, like all cars and trucks, the Toyota Tacoma will need to be in the right gear to start. This gear is important because it signals that the car is in a parked position and ready to be turned on.

  • A simple test to see if this is the cause of your car or truck not starting is to look at the gear shift.
  • If the gear marked is not “P” chances are this is the cause.
  • In most cases, you can simply hold in the brake and place the vehicle in the correct gear.

There are exceptions to this. Sometimes a car may not switch into the right gear and is locked. There are some things that can be done about this. However, these will need a mechanic or someone knowledgeable about vehicles.

Here’s what it looks like when the battery is losing power, with more info below:

Check out the most popular Tacoma Accessories Here from Amazon

Battery is Dead or Faulty

Sometimes your vehicle is left with the lights on, the battery can die. This can be the reason your Tacoma will not start.

To figure out whether this is the reason, try turning your headlights on. If they do not come on, this is a great indicator that your battery is dead.

To get your Toyota Tacoma to start, there are two things that can be done.

  1. Using jumper cables, attach them to another vehicle. This is not a permanent fix. If the battery is still in perfect condition, chances are that it could be the fix needed.
  2. Replace your battery. Sometimes it is time for a battery to be replaced with a new one.

There are some things that can cause a battery to need to be replaced. One thing to check on a battery to see if it could be the problem, is the connections. These are parts of a battery that are prone to oxidation and can become loose. You can also check the wiring and the alternator. Checking these can let you know whether the battery is charging as it should.

Fuel Levels

There are times that you may get in your car and not realize you need gas until the gas light comes on. When a Toyota Tacoma is out of fuel, there is an increased probability that this is the reason it will not start.

But there can be some causes for your vehicle to not start that have to do with fuel. Unfortunately, fuel pumps can get clogged or simply wear out. If either of these things happen, your Toyota is not able to get the pressure needed from the fuel to start.

Mechanical Problems

When you get a Toyota Tacoma, there are quite a bit of mechanical problems that can occur. Finding out what problems is the reason your vehicle will not start. Since a Tacoma has two fuse boxes, there are two different controls.

The fuse box inside of the door controls all the electrics inside. The other fuse box that is in the engine compartment controls the outside like the headlights, alternator, starter motor, etc.

  • The fuse box inside the engine can cause a miss or a surge of power through certain components.
  • For instance, if there is a surge or loss of power in the alternator, the fuse can blow.
  • This causes the fuse to not work properly and can result in the battery not charging correctly.

This can happen for the start motor as well. Since it is connected to this fuse, the starter motor can pull too much energy from the fuse causing it to blow. This can be the reason your vehicle will not start.

Generally, if the fuse has gone bad, it will need to be changed and the fuse box will need to be inspected for damage.

There are also other mechanical problems that can happen. This can be the spark plugs getting damaged or perhaps a broken ignition switch.


 It is important to keep up with your cars or trucks. Maintaining the upkeep and doing what is necessary to ensure that every component and parts are clean and up to date. Keeping your oil changed and taking it to get serviced can help make sure that everything is working smoothly.

This means that when your check engine light comes on, you should take it to your local mechanic to get it checked for problems.

Where is the Starter Relay on a Toyota Tacoma?

Normally the start relay (source: can be found in the power distribution center underneath the hood. However, if you are not able to find it here, there is a chance it could be in the fuse block. There are typically wires that are coming in and out.

To check if this is working, you can measure the amount of voltage on the outpower pin. This measurement can be checked by turning on the switch to the start position.

What are the Major Problems with the Toyota Tacoma?

When it comes to dealing with a Toyota Tacoma, there are going to be some common problems. Below are the major problems that can go on with these types of vehicles.

  • Automatic Transmission problems are known to happen over time.
  • Improper Ball Joint Finishing can cause normal wear and tear; however, it tends to happen quicker with a Tacoma.
  • The front parking light cracks or melts. This normally isn’t a severe problem but can be expensive when needing to replace it.
  • A Mass Airflow Sensor in a Tacoma is known to fail. This sensor is important for the proper function of the vehicle to use the correct amount of fuel in the engine.

These are known to happen within a certain number of miles and are known to occur in Toyota Tacoma.

Check out the most popular Tacoma Accessories Here from Amazon


Toyota Tacoma is a great truck. However, there are some things that can contribute to them not starting. This can be mechanical problems like fuses and faulty spark plugs to batteries needing to be replaced. There are fixes for the common issues that cause the Toyotas to not start.

Replacing the battery and keeping the truck’s main components like the engine and fuses clean and up to date can help keep your Tacoma running.

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