I don't know why, but not all manual transmission 1st gen Tacomas use the same spring to return the clutch pedal to the out position. Those equipped with a 4-cylinder engine use a linear spring (90507-14030), and those with a 6-cylinder use a torsion spring.
The problem with the torsion spring isn't the spring itself - it's plenty strong and never wears out. Rather, it's the plastic bushings that capture the ends of the spring which eventually wear through, resulting in a squeaky clutch pedal, and eventually a clutch pedal that won't fully return to the out position.
The solution is to remove the torsion spring and convert the clutch pedal to use the linear spring from the 4-cylinder Tacomas, something I did one morning in the middle of the Mojave desert. It's an easy, cheap job, and one that everyone should do.
There's only one part needed for this job and it's the linear spring. You can use any #70 spring, but the since Toyota already makes a spring for this exact location, I decided to go OEM:
A five-dollar part will make all the difference.
You only need one tool for this job - a pair of Channellock Pliers.
Doing the Job
The only difficulty in doing this job is finding the anchor point for the linear spring under the dash. Unless you're a tiny human, it's hard to wiggle far enough into the foot well to see it, so you have to find it by feel. Other than that, it's a straight-forward swap.
- Using a pair of Channellock Pliers, compress the torsion spring until one side of it - usually the passenger side - slides out of the hole in which it is captured, freeing the spring. Note: it is generally easiest to fit the pliers over half of the torsion, and then clamp it together.
Adjust the pliers so they compress the spring, and then it will release with some wiggling.
- Remove the torsion spring from the opposite side, and the notch in the clutch pedal.
- Using your hand, find the small anchor point under the dash for the linear clutch spring. Note: it may be behind some wiring harnesses or difficult/impossible to see, but is directly rearward from the clutch pedal, and is just to the passenger side of the blinker relay.
- Make sure that the new linear spring is oriented so that the straight wire is "on top" on the end that will connect to the clutch pedal.
- Loop the rearward end of the new linear spring through the hole in the anchor point, making sure that the forward end is above the metal guard for the old torsion spring.
- Loop the forward end of the new linear spring over the pin on the passenger side of the clutch pedal, and seat it into the groove.
Linear spring installed correctly.
Clean up your fingers if they got dirty and you're done! Enjoy a clutch pedal that will now fully extend after being depressed.
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