1KDFTV Hilux Turbocharger Electric Stepper Motor Fault and Fixes

1KDFTV Hilux Turbocharger Electric Stepper Motor Fault and Fixes

What is a Hilux Electric Stepper Motor?

The Toyota LandCruiser, Hiace, Prado and Hilux use a turbo equipped with variable vane geometry. The vanes are moved with an electric motor.
Hilux turbocharger electric stepper motor faults are common, so read on if you are experiencing problems associated with this electronic actuator.


There is no dump-valve or vacuum waste gate actuation, the ‘dump’ and build up of pressure comes via an electric actuator motor bolted to the turbocharger housing.
Electric Stepper Motors modulate boost when they open and close the vanes inside the turbine housing.

Until recently, a fault with a Hilux stepper motor required replacement of the entire turbocharger unit.
We are able to supply these Stepper Motors as separate parts, so either the turbo or the stepper can be replaced independently of each other.
Save time and money by just replacing the part that is at fault. Don’t replace the entire turbocharger unit (as you are forced to do when you buy OEM).

How and where do I check for faults in a Hilux Stepper Motor?

Check for obvious physical signs of issues around the turbo and stepper.
Has the engine bay has been underwater? If so, there is a good chance there is an electrical fault in the wiring loom or inside the stepper itself.
Check the loom for wear and exposed wiring.

Occasionally a worn turbo will lack boost and the stepper motor is suspected.
Check the impeller for excessive play. It is a symptom of wear inside the turbo and is often accompanied with a high-pitch whine or oil leaking into the turbine or inter-cooler.
When it gets worn enough the vehicle may drop into limp-mode or an engine warning will illuminate on the dash.
Turbo wear doesn’t mean the stepper needs replacing. Quite often it is just the turbo that needs replacing.

Low boost that appears to have no obvious physical symptoms, is more likely to be a fault of the stepper motor.
Any fault codes that may have been thrown by the ECU should be checked.
Use an OBD-II scan tool to check malfunction codes.
Typical stepper motor fault codes include:

  • P1251
  • P0047
  • P2034
  • P1250

The most common code in Hilux stepper faults is P1251 (stepper intermittent fault).
The codes are only an indication that you may have a Hilux turbocharger electric stepper motor fault.
But in the absence of other evidence, this code indicates the stepper motor be replaced.
And it is not common that both turbo and stepper motor fail at the same time.

What if I need to replace the Stepper Motor in my Hilux?

Replace the entire turbocharger unit?
That is poor economic sense if the problem exists in the stepper motor.
Toyota OEM only sells the entire turbocharger unit.
The benefit to Toyota is extra profit, it is not a benefit to the customer.

Best Solution:

Save yourself a couple of thousand!
AND, save labour costs! (stepper is attached with 3 bolts without need to remove the entire turbo from the engine).
AND, get a 24 month warranty on the part (double that provided by Toyota OEM).
You can now purchase JUST the Hilux Turbocharger Electric Stepper Motor HERE….!

Do you have a problem with any other Toyota turbocharger such as Land Cruiser, Hiace or Prado?.
We sell a full range of the best priced after-market electric stepper motor actuators.

If you need to replace the entire turbo/stepper motor unit we also have that covered.
Our range includes hiflow aluminium billet and ceramic impeller upgrades.
We also do re-conditioning(rebuild) for OEM, all covered by our Exclusive 24 Month Warranty.
CLICK HERE to see our full range of flow tested complete units..

If you need any further information, or help in matching parts to your vehicle, please contact our sales line: 0490 059 316.