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General information about the various mods available to 4x4 vehicles covering pros and cons to assist in the decision of "Is this the right mod?"

Tommy Ponder

Winch Remote Extension

I did not want to purchase a wireless remote due to the fact that if the batteries die in it you're out of luck. I also did not want to buy an in-dash remote merely because of the price. What I decided to do was run into the local ACE Hardware and bought 15ft of the wire that has the three individual wires inside of the insulation (like extension cord wire) this cost me about $10.

I decided against merely buying an extension cord because I wanted it to look a little better so I got black wire to match. I was able to choose exactly how long I wanted it, and it was cheaper than buying an extension cord. I then cut my existing remote cord in half and spliced the three wires to the 15 ft section I bought at ACE.

Keep in mind, this method only works with the 3 pin remote plugs, I'm sure there is a way to do it with the 5 pin remotes, but I have a 3 pin. I also used shrink tubing to help secure the connections and I wrapped it up with electrical tape to no end. Good luck!

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John Stewart

Toyota Hydraulic Clutch Assembly Maintenance

Remove the lower portion of the dash (four 10MM bolts on a third generation 4Runner) and the associated wiring plugs, cables, etc. Take care to list or photograph the assemblies in the assembled condition if you feel that you can't keep track of "what goes where." Removing the panel is necessary unless you have the hands of a three year old and the arms of Manute Bol.

Remove the cotter pin holding the cross pin through the clutch pedal and push the cross pin through the pedal assembly. You may need to depress the pedal slightly to release the tension off of the cross pin. Retain the cotter pin and the cross pin, these will be re-used in the replacement process.

Click here to read more about Toyota Hydraulic Clutch Assembly Maintenance

####The 4x4Wire.com is a multimedia Internet publication covering all responsible trail and family oriented off-highway and outdoor recreational activities, both motorized and non-motorized, from an enthusiasts point of view.

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John Stewart

Jeep Axle Options


One of the more common upgrades for a Jeep are axles and the options are many.  The 4x4Wire Jeep Technical axle pages feature articles about stock Jeep axles, axle conversions and upgrades on Jeep vehicles. Various upgrades are covered including one piece axle swaps, full floating swaps, ring and pinion swaps, locker installations, etc.

Click here for more information about Jeep Tech Axles from the 4x4Wire Archives.

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John Stewart

Toyota 3.4L V6 Timing Belt Replacement

To do this successfully at home you will need an assortment of hand tools, a 250 foot pound torque wrench, Snap-On tool number YA9730, a special tool to hold the crankshaft pulley, help from a friend, and considerable experience working on vehicles. The factory timing belt is less than $50, but most owners want to replace the water pump, thermostat, and all the drive belts such as the alternator, power steering, and air conditioning (if equipped). These additional parts, along with supplies such as coolant and sealant will put the total cost close to $200, which is typically about fifty bucks less than what a dealer would charge to replace just the belt.

Click here to read more of Toyota Maintenance: 3.4L V6 Timing Belt Replacement from the 4x4Wire.com archives/

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John Stewart

Time to Replace the O2 Sensor on your 3rd Gen Toyota?

If you are not familiar with the OBDII (On Board Diagnostic generation II) systems used on 3rd generation and later Toyotas, you might want to read this reference before proceeding further in this article. As described in the reference article, the oxygen sensor in the exhaust system is the key "feedback" sensor for correcting and maintaining the proper fuel mixture. It measures the post-combustion gases to determine the actual air/fuel mixture of the prior combustion cycle and then, the ECU adjusts the fuel trim percentage on the next combustion cycle, to keep the fuel mixture at the optimum value.

As the oxygen sensor ages, its responsiveness begins to slow down. Since I have a BR-3 OBD-II scanner that can read the voltages generated by the O2 sensor, I thought I would be able to see some indication in the voltage signal that my O2 sensor was not providing optimum performance. However when I examined the O2 Sensor Output with the engine idling, it appeared to be pretty much the same as I had seen when the vehicle was new. Also, the error codes applicable to the O2 Sensor had not shown up and turned on the Check Engine light.

However, if the Check Engine Light were to turn on with one of the following O2 Sensor codes stored, you should follow the diagnostic procedure and replace the O2 sensor if so indicated in the diagnostic procedure.

Read more of Tech: Time to Replace the O2 Sensor on your 3rd Gen Toyota? in the 4x4Wire.com Archives.

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