How to Open the Engine Access Hole on a Toyota Previa Van

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Toyota introduced its MPV (multi-purpose vehicle) to the United States in 1991, and the Previa quickly became a common sight on American highways. Although many of the Previa’s engine accessories, like the alternator and radiator fan, are available from the hood, the engine itself is mounted under the front seats. The oil filler neck and dipstick are only accessible through an engine access hole located under the driver’s seat.

  • Grasp the steering wheel with your right hand. Pull up on the steering wheel lock-release lever, located toward the rear on the left side of the steering column. Allow the steering wheel to spring up to its highest position. Pull the lock-release lever back down into its locked position.

  • Pull up on the seatback lock-release lever, located on the right-hand side of the seat. Allow the seatback to spring forward to its upright position. Pull the seat position lock-release lever (located under the forward left-hand side of the seat) and push the seat to its rearmost position.

  • Push the seat-lock knob in and tilt the driver’s side seat up and back. Turn over the carpet covering the engine access hole.

  • Turn the knob on the access hole counterclockwise to unlock the cover. Lift the access hole cover up and to the right. Unhinge and remove the access hole cover. Once you have finished, replace the access hole cover into the hinge mounts and lower it back into place. Tight the knob by turning it clockwise.

  • Turn the carpet over and settle it into place. Lower the driver’s-side seat and push down firmly to lock it in place. Adjust the seat to your driving preference. Lower the tilt steering wheel to a comfortable level.

Tips & Warnings

  • Not all models have a tilt steering wheel. Owners of vehicles without a tilt steering wheel should disregard Step 1.
  • Make sure you have not left any rags, tools or other implements in the engine compartment before closing the engine access hole.
  • These instructions apply to the 1991 model. Instructions for other year models may vary.
  • Make sure the engine access hole cover is tightened securely in place prior to starting the engine.
  • Photo Credit http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/e/ef/Toyota_Previa.jpg
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