Accessing Spark Plugs In A Previa

Major tune-ups are pretty crucial especially when stacking up the miles like most Toyota Previa owners tend to do. If you’re like most “normal” car owners, under the passenger seat is not the first place you look for the spark plugs (or the tire jack for that matter). The Previa engineers and designers apparently got the green light to be “creative” or as I like to put it, very forward thinking…You only have to unscrew approximately 184 bolts to get to those bad boys. But if your persistent, have a decent sprocket set, screw driver and some elbow grease you’ll get in there in no time.

…BTW, ignore the mess, we can’t help if some Previa owners don’t know how to work a vacuum.

First things first. Pop off those bolt covers with a screw driver.

2nd – Unbolt the seatbelt at the base. You don’t necessarily have to do this but makes your life easier and there’s a chance you could break it. They definitely were not concerned with weight when they built the Previas. The seats are crazy heavy.

3rd – Unbolt the 4 main bolts holding the seat to the floor.

4th – Pull the seat up and off and set it back out of the way.

5th – Wondering where that tire jack was…here ya go. Get that out of the way and remove the plastic thingy that was hiding it from you.

6th – Remove the small metal plate.

7th – Remove the door jam foot step thingy.

8th – Remove the carpet by first unsnapping the carpet brackets. These can be a bit stubborn but a screwdriver will do the trick, just be careful, they brake easy. Pull the carpet way back and your almost there…only 42 bolts to go!

9th – Remove the metal engine cover/plate. Quite a few bolts here. Remove the plate and blamo your in…well almost.

10th – The plate with the 3 bolts is next. Remove that plate and reveal the key ingredient to a major tune-up…spark plugs.

You also have access to the fuel lines here which is easier from than from down below.

Good luck finding all those bolts you just unscrewed.

Major tune-ups are pretty crucial especially when stacking up the miles like most Toyota Previa owners tend to do. If you’re like most “normal” car owners, under the passenger seat is not the first place you look for the spark plugs (or the tire jack for that matter). The Previa engineers and designers apparently got the green light to be “creative” or as I like to put it, very forward thinking…You only have to unscrew approximately 184 bolts to get to those bad boys. But if your persistent, have a decent sprocket set, screw driver and some elbow grease you’ll get in there in no time.

…BTW, ignore the mess, we can’t help if some Previa owners don’t know how to work a vacuum.

First things first. Pop off those bolt covers with a screw driver.

2nd – Unbolt the seatbelt at the base. You don’t necessarily have to do this but makes your life easier and there’s a chance you could break it. They definitely were not concerned with weight when they built the Previas. The seats are crazy heavy.

3rd – Unbolt the 4 main bolts holding the seat to the floor.

4th – Pull the seat up and off and set it back out of the way.

5th – Wondering where that tire jack was…here ya go. Get that out of the way and remove the plastic thingy that was hiding it from you.

6th – Remove the small metal plate.

7th – Remove the door jam foot step thingy.

8th – Remove the carpet by first unsnapping the carpet brackets. These can be a bit stubborn but a screwdriver will do the trick, just be careful, they brake easy. Pull the carpet way back and your almost there…only 42 bolts to go!

9th – Remove the metal engine cover/plate. Quite a few bolts here. Remove the plate and blamo your in…well almost.

10th – The plate with the 3 bolts is next. Remove that plate and reveal the key ingredient to a major tune-up…spark plugs.

You also have access to the fuel lines here which is easier from than from down below.

Good luck finding all those bolts you just unscrewed.

How To Change The Rear Hatch Shock Lifts in a Previa

First, order up a pair of shocks from ebay. Best price we’ve found for a brand new set and comes with a “life-time warranty”.

Second, make sure you have another pair of hands to help out with this one. You’ll be surprised just how heavy that rear hatch is once you unscrew one hatch shock. Something else to try, which we didn’t, is to measure and cut a 2×4 the height of the open door to help support. This is probably an even better idea if you’re not working with power tools to help speed up the process. The person helping will definitely tire out while waiting for you to get that elbow grease working.

Third, have those new hatch shocks near by ready to go. Then unscrew one hatch shock and replace with the new one as quickly as possible. Obviously don’t unscrew both sides at once as that would be impossible to hold the door in place.

Now get your buddy a cold one for helping you out.

First, order up a pair of shocks from ebay. Best price we’ve found for a brand new set and comes with a “life-time warranty”.

Second, make sure you have another pair of hands to help out with this one. You’ll be surprised just how heavy that rear hatch is once you unscrew one hatch shock. Something else to try, which we didn’t, is to measure and cut a 2×4 the height of the open door to help support. This is probably an even better idea if you’re not working with power tools to help speed up the process. The person helping will definitely tire out while waiting for you to get that elbow grease working.

Third, have those new hatch shocks near by ready to go. Then unscrew one hatch shock and replace with the new one as quickly as possible. Obviously don’t unscrew both sides at once as that would be impossible to hold the door in place.

Now get your buddy a cold one for helping you out.

Build A Bed In Your Previa

Scenario; you love the great outdoors and you’re tired of pitchin’ a tent…especially when you live in the Pacific Northwest where rain can really put a “damper” on things. Next best affordable and practical option is to get yourself a minivan…Preferably an AWD Toyota Previa! Throw a rocket box on top and it’s not so soccer mommish. Next build a bench that flips open to a double wide bed. When it’s a couple feet up off the ground you can store tons of gear below and then there’s plenty of room for you and your girl to sleep comfortably.

Build a bench-bed in your Previa Minivan

We figured it’s pretty self explanatory on how to build them just from looking at the photos here. But below are some suggestions and ideas that might be helpful when building yours.

Below are a few options for arrangements:

  • By taking out the middle row of seats, it opens it up for a bench/single wide bed set up.
  • You could make a quickie single sleeper bed/bench.
  • But it’s quite simple if you want to add a hinged extension that flips open to a double wide.
  • With Previa’s pioneering, forward thinking, way ahead of their time, amazingly practical rear flip up seats (which the Honda Element copied to the T), allows the option for a ‘double wide flip open bed set up’.

How to build a bed in your Previa Minivan

How to build a bed in your Previa Minivan

Build your own leg supports vs. milk crates:

  • As you can see from the photos, you can either go with the more technical direction where you actually build your own legs/support or you take a simple/lazy approach with the milk crates (which also double as extra storage.
  • PROS of technical leg supports – More options for storage. Impress your bros more than they will already be. More sturdy.
  • PROS of simpler/lazy milk crate approach – Time factor = Get on the road sooner.
  • CONS of technical leg supports – There are none. If you have the time go this route!
  • CONS of simpler/lazy milk crate approach – 3 bulky milk crates floating around. Yes they can double as storage but they are not that practical.

How to build a bed in your Previa Minivan

Things to remember:

  • We made sure that the height of the bed was at least high enough to be able to store traditional storage tubs (rubber made) which was also just high enough to use the milk crates as support while in ‘bed mode’. Milk crates come in different sizes so be sure to get the ones that you will be using and measure them first.
  • Applying the hinges can be a bit of a pain, especially the piano hinge. We recommend using the more traditional door hinges. 4 door hinges is bomber but 3 will work.
  • We recommend building it as a ‘free-standing’ bench and not attaching/drilling it into the van wall. This will allow you more options in the future…And it’s a total headache due to the curves of the wall among other surprises in there.
  • You can use cheap wood but just be sure to apply a lot of L brackets.
  • We also recommend using at least 3/4” ply. Anything less and it’s too flimsy.
  • We also recommend carpeting it with a staple gun. This way your sleeping mat/bedding doesn’t slide around as well as gear when it’s sitting on top and driving around. If you go with carpet, you will have to use the door hinges due to the piano hinge being to small and due to the carpet creating a gap.

How to celebrate after building a bed in your Toyota Previa

Have fun and good luck! We would love to see what others come up with!

Scenario; you love the great outdoors and you’re tired of pitchin’ a tent…especially when you live in the Pacific Northwest where rain can really put a “damper” on things. Next best affordable and practical option is to get yourself a minivan…Preferably an AWD Toyota Previa! Throw a rocket box on top and it’s not so soccer mommish. Next build a bench that flips open to a double wide bed. When it’s a couple feet up off the ground you can store tons of gear below and then there’s plenty of room for you and your girl to sleep comfortably.

Build a bench-bed in your Previa Minivan

We figured it’s pretty self explanatory on how to build them just from looking at the photos here. But below are some suggestions and ideas that might be helpful when building yours.

Below are a few options for arrangements:

  • By taking out the middle row of seats, it opens it up for a bench/single wide bed set up.
  • You could make a quickie single sleeper bed/bench.
  • But it’s quite simple if you want to add a hinged extension that flips open to a double wide.
  • With Previa’s pioneering, forward thinking, way ahead of their time, amazingly practical rear flip up seats (which the Honda Element copied to the T), allows the option for a ‘double wide flip open bed set up’.

How to build a bed in your Previa Minivan

How to build a bed in your Previa Minivan

Build your own leg supports vs. milk crates:

  • As you can see from the photos, you can either go with the more technical direction where you actually build your own legs/support or you take a simple/lazy approach with the milk crates (which also double as extra storage.
  • PROS of technical leg supports – More options for storage. Impress your bros more than they will already be. More sturdy.
  • PROS of simpler/lazy milk crate approach – Time factor = Get on the road sooner.
  • CONS of technical leg supports – There are none. If you have the time go this route!
  • CONS of simpler/lazy milk crate approach – 3 bulky milk crates floating around. Yes they can double as storage but they are not that practical.

How to build a bed in your Previa Minivan

Things to remember:

  • We made sure that the height of the bed was at least high enough to be able to store traditional storage tubs (rubber made) which was also just high enough to use the milk crates as support while in ‘bed mode’. Milk crates come in different sizes so be sure to get the ones that you will be using and measure them first.
  • Applying the hinges can be a bit of a pain, especially the piano hinge. We recommend using the more traditional door hinges. 4 door hinges is bomber but 3 will work.
  • We recommend building it as a ‘free-standing’ bench and not attaching/drilling it into the van wall. This will allow you more options in the future…And it’s a total headache due to the curves of the wall among other surprises in there.
  • You can use cheap wood but just be sure to apply a lot of L brackets.
  • We also recommend using at least 3/4” ply. Anything less and it’s too flimsy.
  • We also recommend carpeting it with a staple gun. This way your sleeping mat/bedding doesn’t slide around as well as gear when it’s sitting on top and driving around. If you go with carpet, you will have to use the door hinges due to the piano hinge being to small and due to the carpet creating a gap.

How to celebrate after building a bed in your Toyota Previa

Have fun and good luck! We would love to see what others come up with!

PLEASE DON’T SCRAP YOUR TOYOTA PREVIA!

IF YOU DON’T WANT IT, LET ME KNOW. I CAN BUY IT FROM YOU AND HAUL IT AWAY AND LATER ON BRING IT BACK TO LIFE.

There are quite a few Toyota Previa’s that ended up in the wrecking yards and got crush for scraps. Some of them are in very great shape. If they are not involved in a major accident with structural damages, they can definitely be brought back to life and back on the road in use again.

Remember the program “Cash for Clunkers”, some dealers ended up with quite a few Previa’s. I wish I could have bought some but they couldn’t resell them and all had to be scrapped…dark days for Toyota Previa owners~!

I’ve been working on the Toyota Previa for many years and have owned many different models. I’m the owner of GarageTuner Automotive, fully licensed and paying taxes. If you have problems with your Toyota Previa, whether it’s an oil leak, whistling sound, brake jobs, suspension, unknown “clunking” noise, SAD shaft, cylinder head, installing new engine and transmission, or other unknown irritated problems, please send me an email. Most definitely, I can help.

Toyota Previa’s are such a well built vehicles. They are very unique and always stand out. They need to be fixed and put back on the roads! In the 60′s and 70′s era, they had VW buses, which as we all know, were very popular. In this generation, we have the Toyota Previa. I believe they will be the new VW buses for our generation.

SAVE the Previa, KEEP them out of the wrecking yards.

PEACE!!!

Thanks,

Samay

IF YOU DON’T WANT IT, LET ME KNOW. I CAN BUY IT FROM YOU AND HAUL IT AWAY AND LATER ON BRING IT BACK TO LIFE.

There are quite a few Toyota Previa’s that ended up in the wrecking yards and got crush for scraps. Some of them are in very great shape. If they are not involved in a major accident with structural damages, they can definitely be brought back to life and back on the road in use again.

Remember the program “Cash for Clunkers”, some dealers ended up with quite a few Previa’s. I wish I could have bought some but they couldn’t resell them and all had to be scrapped…dark days for Toyota Previa owners~!

I’ve been working on the Toyota Previa for many years and have owned many different models. I’m the owner of GarageTuner Automotive, fully licensed and paying taxes. If you have problems with your Toyota Previa, whether it’s an oil leak, whistling sound, brake jobs, suspension, unknown “clunking” noise, SAD shaft, cylinder head, installing new engine and transmission, or other unknown irritated problems, please send me an email. Most definitely, I can help.

Toyota Previa’s are such a well built vehicles. They are very unique and always stand out. They need to be fixed and put back on the roads! In the 60′s and 70′s era, they had VW buses, which as we all know, were very popular. In this generation, we have the Toyota Previa. I believe they will be the new VW buses for our generation.

SAVE the Previa, KEEP them out of the wrecking yards.

PEACE!!!

Thanks,

Samay