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It doesn't look like it, but the Toyota 4Runner is designed to tackle even the toughest off-road obstacle and can still rival other crossover vehicles for on-road performance. This vehicle is perfect for the rugged weekend warrior that also needs to use it on his daily commute to work. Because of its excellent suspension and spring settings, the Toyota 4Runner can deliver a great ride and decent handling. However, there have been complaints about its engine cutting out at highway speeds, particularly when driving over 60 mph.
Troubleshooting an intermittent engine stall
What's difficult about the problem of your Toyota 4Runner's engine cutting out or stalling at highway speeds is that you cannot diagnose the issue until it happens. Most of the time, there will not be a check engine light or even fault codes to help you in finding the cause of the engine stalling. If your vehicle's engine turns off only when you drive over 60 mph, then there are two likely causes. First, the engine might be running out of fuel or is not receiving enough fuel pressure. To confirm, connect a gauge to the fuel system and measure the pressure with the key on the ignition but the engine off, then you must measure it again with the engine on. The readings must be within specifications based on the year of your Toyota 4Runner.
Fixing an engine that cuts out at highway speeds
Once you find out what's causing your Toyota 4Runner's engine to shut down at highway speeds, you should also know how to fix it. If the problem is caused by low fuel pressure, then the most likely root problem is a fuel pump that is not spinning fast enough or is randomly turning off. This is mostly common for Toyota 4Runners that are several years old and have a lot of miles on them. However, this doesn't mean you have to immediately replace it. Even if you confirm that the low fuel pressure is the cause, there might still be another problem component that's making this happen. For example, if the fuel pressure regulator is also leaking and the inside of the vacuum hose is wet with fuel, then you need to replace that regulator. Look for other related problems and fix them first before you get to the fuel pump.
Caring for the fuel pump to prevent engine stalling
Aside from basic vehicle maintenance, the best way to prevent your Toyota 4Runner's engine from cutting out or stalling while you drive at highway speeds is to care for the fuel pump. To maximize the life of this component, you must never let your vehicle's fuel level fall below a quarter of the tank. The fuel pump can get damaged when you drive your SUV until the tank is empty and then is refueled. Another way to care for the fuel pump is to change the fuel filter regularly, or every 50,000 miles, to purify the gas that's going to the injectors. You should also include this component in your routine inspection to catch any early warning signs that the fuel pump is failing before you experience any inconvenience.