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Tundra mods

Ok I want to make some upgrades to my 2011 tundra. Make it more reliable. Maybe off road and trip able to camp right from the truck. I need help. People are giving me a lot of different advice. I have around 20k to spend.

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All you can do for reliability is get it thoroughly inspected by a good mechanic. And keep up on maintenance. How many miles on this?

there are also maintenance items that the manufacturers neglect, because they are designing and specing them for the warrantee period only. Such as: transmission and differential fluids change. Brake fluid change.

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There were some good suggestions in your other post for off-roading. It seems to me that the lift kit may reduce the reliability. For now, stick to the camping aspect and see if the Tundra is acceptable as is. You could easily spend the $20,000 on camping gear. Maybe a winch to get yourself out of trouble. What about a water supply, like 10 to 20 gallons? A gas cooking surface would be nice, depending on how much you want to rough it. A cap could also be useful if you camp a lot and get stuck with lots of rain/sleet/snow or much colder weather than you expected. I know these aren’t exactly truck modifications, but you don’t know whether the truck will be fine as is yet.

This is very practical for camping


Seconded. On a full-size pickup, the camper shell is the easiest and most convenient way to camp as long as you don’t need tons of room.


I have 76,000 miles on truck it’s a 2011. It just seems that the truck I see have lift kits for treks into the wood. That’s the only reason I ask. If I don’t need one I’m fine w not getting one.

Unless you’re planning on going REALLY off-roading, the camper should be all you need. The Tundra should be easily able to handle all but the most trying camping adventures, especially if it’s a 4X4.

If you’re really concerned, you can mount one of these on the front. You get stuck, you tie it to a tree and pull the truck out.

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If reliability is a concern then change the fluids regularly and maintain their levels. Keep tabs on the battery cable ends and battery condition also.

I also agree with mountainbike. If you’re going to be out the sticks away from everyone then a winch would be a good idea.

And by the way, offroading a vehicle is the opposite of making it more reliable. Stuff breaks, it’s part of the deal.

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Agree with the previous posters. Make sure the truck is in good shape before hitting the trail.

One more item not mentioned, better tires and wheels to hold them. Find out what tire type works best for your intended trails. There are lots of specialty trail tires out there. Some are for mud, some rocky hard pack surfaces, some are better for combined surfaces. Don’t assume your “All Season” tires will work. And understand you will make compromises - good off-road tires are usually really noisy on the highway. You can gain off-road prowess really quickly with taller and wider tires. That may require a wider wheel. And stay the heck away from 22’s with low profile tires! That will get you stuck faster than bald tires.

Don’t off road alone. It can be dangerous. Join a club. There is safety in numbers as well as good advice. Ask them what works on the trails they run.

Lift kits can cause problems if not expertly done, I’d stay away from them.

More reliable than a Tundra? That is a tough challenge.

Good point!
Modern Tundras are even better than the TOYOTA pickup trucks ubiquitous in every news video of a military coup in a third-world country! Old Toyota pickups can be seen throughout these videos truckin’ through undeveloped territory full of armed insurgents! If these guys can get where they’re going, you should go with confidence!


I am looking into tow-able houseboats, best of both worlds! stay in a campground or cruise the waters.


I like it! :grin:

Reliability is usually better when the vehicle remains stock as much as possible. So for that, no turbos, no lift kits. Installing a small camper or shell would make your camping trips easier and more fun. Even if your Tundra is just 2WD you can take it most anywhere you want to go on dirt and gravel roads for camping and fishing. 4WD extreme type roads, like the Sierra Nevada’s Rubicon Trail not so much, but there’s so many other places to camp and fish, why worry about that? I suggest you keep your Tundra stock, invest in a small camper or sleeping shell and the routine maintenance up to date, and spend the rest of your money and time enjoying America’s outdoors rather than in the shop battling turbos and lift kits. If you really want to improve your Tundra for steeper and technically challenging 4wd roads, an improved rear differential configuration is probably your best bet there. There’s several magazines that focus on this topic, on is called Toyota Four Wheel Drive or something like that. There’s another one called Peterson’s Four Wheel Drive or something like that, it’s quite informative on this topic too. My sense is that the kind of stuff they do is more fun to read about than actually doing it.

Sounds like you want a Boaterhome.

Sadly, the company went out of business.

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I recall seeing one of those parked near a boat shop in Boulder City, NV for a period of time more than 20 years ago. I didn’t know there was more than one, I thought it was a one-off custom build by a wealthy fool.

The first picture looks like Boulder City and the second Lake Mead.

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Man, can you imagine trying to push a truck tractor through water with a propeller? That would give whole new meaning to the word “drag”. No wonder they went out of business!

It looks like the boat portion is resting on the carrier. The van section couldn’t pull out of the water if the back wheels didn’t come with it. I actually kinda like the idea except the turning radius must be a bear…