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Question: Anyone know if Toyota changed the seatbelt buckle/latch mechanism at some point or if they are, as they appear, all the same?

Background: I have been having an intermittent problem of the driver's side seatbelt not releasing when I push the button which is very frustrating. It always works on the second try, but still, seems like it could turn into a bad thing. I bought a replacement used buckle from Ken which is out of a 2000 model. It looks identical, but doesn't latch to my seatbelt.
 

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Question: Anyone know if Toyota changed the seatbelt buckle/latch mechanism at some point or if they are, as they appear, all the same?

Background: I have been having an intermittent problem of the driver's side seatbelt not releasing when I push the button which is very frustrating. It always works on the second try, but still, seems like it could turn into a bad thing. I bought a replacement used buckle from Ken which is out of a 2000 model. It looks identical, but doesn't latch to my seatbelt.
Yes, there's a difference in the tulips (i.e., latch mechanism). When I swapped my '00 seats for '04 seats.. if I recall correctly, the '00 seat belts wouldn't snap into the '04 tulips and the '04 seat belts wouldn't easily release from the '00 tulips. The simple solution was to swap the tulips back to the original cars.

Rich
 

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Yes, there's a difference in the tulips (i.e., latch mechanism). When I swapped my '00 seats for '04 seats.. if I recall correctly, the '00 seat belts wouldn't snap into the '04 tulips and the '04 seat belts wouldn't easily release from the '00 tulips. The simple solution was to swap the tulips back to the original cars.

Rich
I'm betting you have that backwards, since my 03 seatbelt won't snap in to the 00 tulip. I should have checked this before I bought the part.... Thanks for confirming my fail :D
 

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I think that is actually the plastic housing on the tulip. Seems like when I ran into this problem a hacksaw to the end of the tulip so that the buckle went in farther worked.
 

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I'm betting you have that backwards, since my 03 seatbelt won't snap in to the 00 tulip. I should have checked this before I bought the part.... Thanks for confirming my fail :D
Now that I think about the events of the afternoon, you are correct..
 
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