really awful
Crashes / Fires:
2 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
39,262 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

The NHTSA is the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints can be spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem. See the Back button — blue bar at the very top of the page — to explore more.

Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2002 Toyota Tundra:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

problem #54

Apr 172014


  • 101,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Toyota Tundra. The contact stated that while parked, the contact discovered that the brake line was leaking. The manufacturer was contacted. The vehicle was taken to the dealer. The technician diagnosed that the rear framing member had rotted and needed to be replaced. The vehicle was repaired but the failure recurred. The failure mileage was 101,000 and the current mileage was 101,300.

- Central Lake, MI, USA

problem #53

Mar 122012

Tundra 4WD 8-cyl

  • 91,200 miles
Rear brake line had severe corrosion where it attached to the proportional valve. Corrosion caused brake fluid to leak and brake failure.

- Richmondville, NY, USA

problem #52

Dec 062011

Tundra 4WD 8-cyl

  • 133,000 miles
Any speed above 40mph produces a violent shake/wobble from the front end. Going down a slope and /or applying the brakes makes the problem worse. This is the second time in 2 years that I have had to replace the rotors, calipers and pads at a considerable cost to myself. Both times the symptoms were the same and the cause was the same. The plungers on the right front caliper sticks and causes the pad to maintain contact with the rotor and overheating it causing the rotor to warp. The warp in the rotor produces the shaking which is extremely unsafe. I don't tow or haul heavy loads, I don't drive excessively fast nor do I use excessive braking, still the problem recurs.

- King George, VA, USA

problem #51

Dec 242010


  • 53,935 miles
Took my 2002 Tundra to a local Toyota dealer for a second time to inspect frame after being told by an independent licensed mechanic that my frame was perforated/rotted, the rear end housing was leaking, the spare tire hanger was broken, (tire missing), all heat shields were either broken, loose or missing and front brakes were in need of being replaced again. Front brake rotors, pads and calipers were replaced 11/09/07. All of this had occurred since 05/06/2010 when the truck was last on his lift. Harr Toyota performed a frame inspection and verified all of the above failures. They also did the frame crossmember inspection in 01/10 and the truck passed. They specified that the frame failure was @lt rail/trans mt. They also said the rt ft sway bar link was broken, and noticed an exhaust leak. They declared that in spite of the frame failure it was safe to drive just don't do any offroading! so I guess that hitting a pothole would not be advised.! they told me that the brakes were unsafe, and not covered under any recall. I am very upset at the condition/value of my truck. I am also very upset that NHTSA is letting Toyota get away with the "warranty enhancement" of replacing the frame only of these trucks. Toyota and its dealers denied the rust problem for years. My problem started when the vehicle was still under warranty, and I was blamed for the failure. In the years that Toyota has denied a problem with the Tundra, the frame rust has infected, most if not all, of the truck. Both bumpers are rotting off. The gas tank had to be patched (05/2010) because it was leaking fuel from a rust spot under one of the support straps. Toyota will replace other compromised parts at the owners full expense. In my opinion they are using the frame replacement to generate part sales and repair business to help defer costs. NHTSA- please force a more comprehensive recall! !

- Oakham, MA, USA

problem #50

Oct 152007


  • 29,000 miles
Brake problem. My vehicle shakes to the point the vehicle nearly loses control when slowing Toyota is aware of problem but refuses to do anything about it. Extremely dangerous at highway speeds when brakes are applied. Have called but they refuse to do anything about it.

- Denver, CO, USA

problem #49

Apr 052003


  • 10,000 miles
Poor braking and shimmy from Toyota Tundra.

- Mesa, AZ, USA

problem #48

Jun 162005

Tundra 4WD 8-cyl

  • 60,000 miles
We bought a used 2002 Toyota Tundra on 6-16-2005 that had 45,134 miles on it. It now has 109,000 miles on it. When we first bought the truck from the dealership, the brakes were replaced before we took it home because we noticed a vibration. Since then, we have replaced the brakes, pads, etc. Twice. We now have to have the vehicle service again because while driving the truck shakes violently at around 40 mph and braking literally shakes the entire truck. It seems highly unreasonable to have to replace the braking system 4 times in three years of ownership. I believe that there is a serious defect in the braking system in the 2002 Toyota Tundra that could lead to accidents causing injury or death. When will Toyota recall these vehicles due to manufacturing defects in their braking system? I am starting the incident date as of the date of purchase since that is when we first had the brakes replaced. I now have to pay more money to have the entire truck braking system corrected again so that we do not end up in harms way. Toyota needs to step up and review all the complaints that have been filed about this complain. Something is wrong with the braking system in this vehicle.

- New Lenox, IL, USA

problem #47

Feb 012010

Tundra 4WD 8-cyl

  • 85,000 miles
I have experienced excessive front suspension shaking when the brakes are applied to my 2002 Toyota Tundra. I have just a little over 100K miles but the shaking is getting worse. I have had my brakes pads changed in accordance with standards, I have rotated my tires as well.

- Fresno, CA, USA

problem #46

Jan 012010


  • 15,000 miles
The brakes have a serious brake vibration when applied. It originally only happened when going down long grades but now it happens all of the time. The brakes and rotors have been replaced but that only fixes the issue for about 5K miles.

- Laguna Niguel, CA, USA

problem #45

Jul 082009


  • 120,000 miles
2002 Toyota Tundra-brake line locked up due to rust. Toyota quoted approximately $1300 to repair.

- Ijamsville, MD, USA

problem #44

Feb 012010


  • 15,000 miles
Do your job NHTSA. The 2000-05 Tundra have a brake problem. How many complaints do you need to recall an obvious safety problem that Toyota has ignored? they are on the ropes now for some of the other problems that they have been ignoring for years. You can act tough and strike now, while they are unable to strike back.

- Bakersfield, CA, USA

problem #43

Feb 012010


  • miles
Approx every 3000 miles the rotors warp and have to be replace. It is a dangerous situation if traveling or pulling trailers. I do not do either and very careful with truck. Still happens. Dealer didn't do the tsb before I bought it with 16,000 miles on it. I don't put many miles on it so it was out of warranty when first had the problem. Didn't realize it was a recurring problem until the second time I had to have it fixed. Lots of forums on the same problem. No coop from Toyota or dealers.

- Battle Ground, WA, USA

problem #42

May 302007


  • 35,000 miles
2002 and 2003 Toyota Tundra brakes warp every 10,000 miles. I have owned a 2002 Toyota Tundra since it was new. At 35,000 miles, I began to experience a brake problem with violent shaking of the front end. My normal mechanic told me that it was warped front break rotors and they would have to be ground down flat. I did this and then experienced the same problem at approximately 45,000, 55,000 and 65,000 miles. I am now nearing 75,000 miles and the vibration is starting. I only drive about 10,000 miles a year and have had heavy loads on the truck about 5 times in the last 8 years. My mechanic showed me a set of instructions that mechanics had for upgrading Toyota Tundra breaks because of a design problem with undersized front disc brakes and drum brakes in the back after my last brake job. I contacted my Toyota dealer and was told that brakes are generally covered and are considered routine maintenance. However, they were aware that the brakes on the 2002 -2003 Tundra had a design problem and did not hold up properly. They continued that the brakes had been upgraded with a labor only charge for anyone who contacted them within the first 3 years or 36,000 miles. They also stated that this brake upgrade kit was no longer available as a kit and I would have to purchase the parts separately if I wanted to fix the problem. The cost of the parts is over $2000 without labor. The Toyota 800 number told me I had no options because brakes are routine maintenance, period. Currently, my only plan is to continue to have my rotors turned every 10,000 miles until I need new ones. Hopefully other Tundra owners will do the same or their safety will be greatly compromised. My front end suspension is also showing wear.

- Suwanee, GA, USA

problem #41

Dec 222009


  • 81,500 miles
Steering vibrates excessively every time when braking the vehicle at speed greater than 40 miles per hour.

- Elk Grove, CA, USA

problem #40

Aug 152009


  • 109,810 miles
2002 Toyota Tundra SR5 extended cab: On Sunday 8/15/09 brakes failed and I evacuated vehicle because of smoke coming out of engine compartment. Vehicle towed to repair shop, mechanic discovered that rack and pinion had rusted through and brake fluid caused the smoke as it burned on the engine block. The break lines did not fail it was a hole in the assembly through which the brake fluid escaped. Very serious incident that could have resulted in an accident has it occurred while driving at speed, incident occurred while I was leaving my driveway. I called Toyota on 8/21/09 to report failure and find out if there was recall, number called, 800-331-4331 ext 5, ref number for call 0908132654. Toyota informed me that there was no recall. I am reporting this incident now, 11/25/09, in light of the recent recall for rusting frame member. My loss a brakes resulted from the corrosion of a component that my mechanic was surprised to see fail. This was a first during his 15 years working as a mechanic.

- Topsfield, MA, USA

problem #39

Nov 072009


  • 84,668 miles
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------- I got under my 2002 Toyota Tundra trd SR5 extra cab to assess the rust this past weekend. I was dumbfounded! control arms, front wishbone, suspension brackets, and rear differential look like a shipwreck that's been under the sea for 100 years. The rear differential housing has rusted completely through and is leaking through the side of the housing! the spare tire holder is so rusted the wheel is about to fall off. All shields and safety guards have fallen off or will soon. I bought the truck new in Nov of '01. It now has 84,000 miles. I've had all recommended services performed at the dealer.they never mentioned the rust although they do a "safety inspection" at every service. I've always washed off the salt in the winter. The body panels show no rust at all and the outside of the truck looks like new. I have taken excellent care of this vehicle. I had a Chevy truck kept under the same conditions that after 15 years and 250,000 miles looked nothing like this. I cannot drive this truck in this condition.

- Warner, NH, USA

problem #38

Oct 222009


  • 119,000 miles
Upper ball joints, rear springs, brakes front & back, and manual transmission, and O2 sensors too! this is what I have been repairing and was not aware of all of the recalls on my truck! so far I have just repairing it until today, after hearing about the newest recall! I will be calling my dealer Monday....

- Intervale, NH, USA

problem #37

Oct 132009


  • 73,900 miles
Front drivers side sway bar link is corroded through. No accident or injury but only because I knew what was going on after I saw the broken link and drove accordingly. After further investigation we find that the brake calipers are corroded beyond salvage and the frame has heavy rust in a number of areas. It is clear that this truck will be worthless in a few years due to the heavy corrosion and we will all be lucky if someone is not killed due to corrosion damage causing something to fall off and cause a wreck.

- Baldwinsville, NY, USA

problem #36

May 282009


  • 60,000 miles
I have had nothing but problems with my 02 Tundra..the truck shakes violently while braking I have had brakes and rotors replaced 3 times within 4 months I learned about this service bulletin through another website while learning that hundreds if not thousands of people are having the same problem.

- Hemet, CA, USA

problem #35

Feb 282006


  • 86,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Toyota Tundra. The vehicle was purchased in July of 2008. Approximately six months later, the contact noticed that the brakes would pulsate when pressure was applied to the brake pedal. The vehicle was driven to the dealer and they stated that the vehicle had previously been repaired under recall. The mechanic also stated that the ball joints and rotors needed to be replaced. In addition, the ball joints were repaired due to a safety recall, but not the rotors. After the repairs were made, the vehicle was driven to a local repair shop where the rotors and brake pads were repaired. The manufacturer stated that the vehicle was not under recall for the rotors; therefore, they were not liable for the repairs. The NHTSA campaign id number was unknown. The current mileage was 108,000 and failure mileage was 86,000.

- Las Vegas, NV, USA

Read the next 20 complaints »