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Discussion Starter #1
Hi everyone, I'm actually sitting in the dealership as I write this.
Like the title says, I'm buying an 07 fj with under 100k miles for my daughter's first vehicle.

Im buying it from a Lexus dealer and they've done a thorough inspection. I've driven it and everything seems great. I've been a fan of the FJ for years, I just always planned on picking it up for me.

Any advice on things to check or look out for?
Thanks in advance.
 

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Welcome! What a lucky daughter.... 馃憤 Verify regular maintenece and get a good look at the underside for rust. Feel free to,post pics!
 

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Huge blindspots and assuming a new driver....thats the biggest thing to look out for. Have her use the mirrors and turn her head every time she switches lanes. Always amazed when i check side mirrors and rearview mirror and it looks clear...and then turn my head....an oh...what do you know....theres a vehicle right next to me that I didnt see.

I would go through the maintenance records and make sure all the fluids have been changed (oil, trans fluid, transfer case fluid, front diff fluid, rear diff fluid, coolant, spark plugs, serpentine belt, etc)
 

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Yeah, you didn鈥檛 give any specifications on your daughter.

Pros
FJs are solid. SOLID. That translates into relatively safe.

Cons
Gas mileage
Visibility (not a problem for those who have driven trucks, other types of vehicles)

Other
In addition to checking maintenance records I have always found it a good idea when buying a used vehicle to change ALL of the fluids myself, under my watchful eye, or through a Toyota dealer. That is especially true when buying from a non-brand dealer who might not know all of the ins and outs of an FJ.

Clean or change the cabin air filter.

Do the headlight lenses need clearing? And maybe consider LEDs if she will be doing much night driving.

New wiper blades.

Does your daughter know the detailed use of 4WD?
 

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Beyond the above mentioned, I鈥檇 check for rust on the frame. Depending on where the vehicle spend it鈥檚 life, and how it was taken care of will effect this greatly. While the body鈥檚 not prone to rust, the frame and suspension is when exposed to road salts and not properly cared for.
Also the 07鈥 had optional side airbags. If I were buying it for a new driver, not only would the blind spots concern me as mentioned. But not having side air bags would as well. And I鈥檇 want to make sure they were added when originally purchased. As learning to look over your shoulder every time you change lanes will fix the blind spot issue. (Blindspot mirrors are nice too). And just learning to physically check your blind spot is a good thing in any car. But nothing will replace a side airbag.
There was also an issue with fender tearing on the 07鈥 to 09鈥 I believe. Others will be more familiar with that then me. But you鈥檒l actually see small tears or cracks on the inner side fender in the engine bay. I want to say about half way along the fender, a couple inches down.
Other than that they鈥檙e great vehicles.
 

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Beyond the above mentioned, I鈥檇 check for rust on the frame. Depending on where the vehicle spend it鈥檚 life, and how it was taken care of will effect this greatly. While the body鈥檚 not prone to rust, the frame and suspension is when exposed to road salts and not properly cared for.
Also the 07鈥 had optional side airbags. If I were buying it for a new driver, not only would the blind spots concern me as mentioned. But not having side air bags would as well. And I鈥檇 want to make sure they were added when originally purchased. As learning to look over your shoulder every time you change lanes will fix the blind spot issue. (Blindspot mirrors are nice too). And just learning to physically check your blind spot is a good thing in any car. But nothing will replace a side airbag.
There was also an issue with fender tearing on the 07鈥 to 09鈥 I believe. Others will be more familiar with that then me. But you鈥檒l actually see small tears or cracks on the inner side fender in the engine bay. I want to say about half way along the fender, a couple inches down.
Other than that they鈥檙e great vehicles.
 

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Oh, yep. Rust. That鈥檚 a good one That I forgot. Remember that surface rust isn鈥檛 necessarily a problem if you fix it. A wire brush and a rattle can work wonders.

I have an 鈥07 that I bought new. No side airbags. I am old enough, however, that I grew up without air bags. Or seat belts. For that matter, everyone smoked and asbestos was everywhere. How am I still alive.

I never heard about tearing in the inner fenders, but mine doesn鈥檛 have it.
 

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Welcome aboard!
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks everyone this is exactly the kind of info I was after.

Im in Colorado so there's no rust that I can find anywhere. I'll be getting under it further tomorrow.

My daughter is tiny and I wanted something big enough to take a hit but small enough for her to be comfortable maneuvering it in everyday life.

She's never driven anything smaller than an Unlimited Rubicon. Which strangely enough matches up very nice size wise with the FJ.

I know about the blind spots, but I'm just treating it as part of the learning curve of driving for her. She's a sharp kid, she'll manage.

Anything else you guys have im all ears.

Thanks again.
 

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Okay, thinking about this as I drive around, only one more thing came to mind. This depends on your daughter. You might consider installing a backup camera. Unlike, say, the Subaru AWD Foresters and Outbacks, the FJ is fat. Parking lots are increasingly striped short and narrow. Not all people have developed good senses about the location of their rear end. Being short will make that even worse. I don鈥檛 use backup camera but my GF uses hers in her Subaru. Also good to see people walking behind you in lots. Just an idea.
 

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Im in Colorado so there's no rust that I can find anywhere. I'll be getting under it further tomorrow.
If you guys are on Facebook, be sure to join Colorado FJ Cruisers. I'm one of the original founders of the club, and wrote both the buy/sell guide here and a great CB install thread. If you're planning on modding it, we get discounts with local vendors and can recommend who/what to get. We have our annual Meet&Greet in April at Toytec, and plan offroading runs during the season.

If you're free this weekend and don't mind a drive to Arvada, I'll be helping a buddy with some small cosmetic work on his FJ and would be happy to do a quick inspection on your truck.
 

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I always hear issues with blind spots, I don鈥檛 have an issue.

There is a correct way to set up your mirrors and if you can see your FJ you鈥檙e doing it wrong.


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Welcome from Oregon 馃檪

I installed a head unit that has input for front and rear camera. I keep the rear camera display up when I'm driving.

Any car passing on the right or left is visible in the display and when I look out to the side. (except maybe a smart car). Image below was taken at a stop light. Only really good for near objects, for distance objects not so good but you have the side view mirrors for distance. The silver car to the left is almost visible looking out the passenger's window.

IMG_0410.JPG
 

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Welcome from Oregon 馃檪

I installed a head unit that has input for front and rear camera. I keep the rear camera display up when I'm driving.

Any car passing on the right or left is visible in the display and when I look out to the side. (except maybe a smart car). Image below was taken at a stop light. Only really good for near objects, for distance objects not so good but you have the side view mirrors for distance. The silver car to the left is almost visible looking out the passenger's window.

View attachment 1122223
What brand did you buy? Any installation problems? Details? I assume you added the screen on the dash. How did you mount it?
 

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What brand did you buy? Any installation problems? Details? I assume you added the screen on the dash. How did you mount it?
Kenwood DDX-793 (no nav). I took the easy way out and had it done at the local car stereo shop. The unit in the picture is the head unit. 7" display. I didn't use the FJ B/U camera. It didn't take them an hour. Installed the unit and a new camera and wiring. They used an adapter harness so it was clean.

I believe (not verified) if I had used a Pioneer unit the stock camera would have plugged into it. Didn't know that until afterwards.

With an aftermarket rear bumper and larger spare my view out the rear window is almost completely blocked. I can see a little through the spokes of the spare. 馃槂 The stock radio is a Pioneer.

IMG_1322.JPG


IMG_1321.JPG
 

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I always hear issues with blind spots, I don鈥檛 have an issue.

There is a correct way to set up your mirrors and if you can see your FJ you鈥檙e doing it wrong.


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No argument there, never figured out that sweet spot with the mirrors, just not comfortable for me.. I can't see squat out the back window.
cheers[1].gif
 

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You鈥檙e all in good company though, I鈥檝e yet to convince my beautiful inside and out wife that she doesn鈥檛 need to see the side of her vehicle, no matter how many times I set her mirrors properly they always end up staring down the side of the car. Tough to break bad habits.



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