Toyota Tacoma’s Blind Spot Monitor (BSM): Explained

Blind Spot Monitor is a crucial safety feature offered on the Tacoma that is proved to prevent accidents.

Key Points:

  • Blind Spot Monitor alerts the driver when a vehicle is in the truck's blind spot.
  • Two radars in the rear bumper are used to monitor other vehicles.
  • BSM available standard on all grades except SR, which offers it as an option.

Today’s trucks are filled with high-tech, innovative safety features. Toyota continues to lead the way with advanced equipment desired by all drivers. One of the most coveted programs is the Toyota Tacoma Blind Spot Monitor (BSM).

In this guide, I show you how the Blind Spot Monitor works and discuss ways to troubleshoot problems you may have. I also reveal the price and availability of Toyota BSM. 

What Is Blind Spot Monitor?

Toyota Tacoma models with the Blind Spot Monitor have radar sensors that monitor the blind spots of the truck. As vehicles begin to overtake yours on the road, the BSM lets you know that someone is driving where you may not see.

(2024 Toyota Tacoma Owner’s Manual)

This system serves two functions:

  • BSM: Assisting you in ensuring the coast is clear when changing lanes
  • Rear Cross Traffic Alert: Helps you back up safely

The benefits of having a blind spot monitor include the following:

  • Safer lane changes: Studies by the IIHS determine that lane changes cause nearly 17% of severe collisions. The BSM feature helps drop these statistics.
  • Increased visibility: When driving with objects in the way, it can be challenging to decipher if it’s safe to make a lane change. Yet, these sensors see beyond the signs, trees, and other objects to navigate the way.
  • Turning at an intersection: When you make a left-hand turn across several lanes of traffic, it helps to have a system watching the blind spot. 

How It Works

Toyota doesn’t use cameras for the Blind Spot Monitor. Instead, there are two radar sensors built into the bumper. 

One sensor is found on the inside left rear bumper, with the other on the inside right. Some models may also include sensors on the side mirrors.

toyota tacoma blind spot monitor radar sensor locations

To activate the BSM, the main switch must be turned on. If the system is activated, the indicator light illuminates. 

toyota tacoma blind spot monitor button turned on

When a vehicle is in a blind spot, the driver receives the notification in two different ways.

  1. An indicator light appears on the side mirror as a vehicle enters the truck’s blind spot.
  2. If the driver activates the turn signal in spite of the alert, the mirror indicator begins flashing.
toyota tacoma blind spot monitor warning icon

BSM alerts drivers whenever the surrounding vehicles are in the blind spot and moving at a speed of more than ten mph. 

Troubleshooting Problems

As with any technology, there could be times when the BSM doesn’t work correctly. Let’s look at some common problems and simple solutions.

Common Blind Spot Monitor Problems

Here are some of the most common BSM problems, as reported by owners.

  • Faulty/defective sensors
  • Malfunctioning audio-visual indicators
  • Buildup of dirt and debris on the bumper or outside mirror, causing the blind spot monitor to cease working
  • Damaged wires, buttons, or connectors
  • Abnormal sensor voltage

It’s also possible to have trouble seeing the outside rearview mirror indicator when the sun is strong. Some people also complain about the difficulty of hearing the warning noise when there are other sounds, such as the stereo playing. 

 (Truck Authority)

How to Fix Your Blind Spot Monitor

If you encounter an issue with the Blind Spot Monitor, you may be able to troubleshoot the problem on your own. Here are a few tips to consider.

  1. Look for an error message on your dashboard. You may be able to discern what’s wrong through the message, for example, if a side mirror indicator isn’t working.
  2. The “Blind Spot Monitor Not Available” message on the dashboard means that the sensor or area around it is dirty or covered. A buzzer sounds with this error, and cleaning the sensor area should resolve the issue.
  3. When the “Check Blind Spot Monitor System” message appears, a buzzer sounds at the same time. This indicates a malfunction with the system itself.

You can find more information about these messages and errors in your Tacoma Owner’s Manual. We also recommend taking your Tacoma to a Toyota Service Department for more support. 

Pricing and Availability

Not all of the Tacomas include Blind Spot Monitor as standard technology. Here are the 2024 grades compatible with Blind Spot Monitor:

  • SR (option)
  • SR5 (standard)
  • TRD Sport (standard)
  • TRD Off-Road (standard)
  • TRD PreRunner (standard)
  • TRD Pro (standard)
  • Trailhunter (standard)
  • Limited (standard)



Consider equipping your Tacoma truck with the Blind Spot Monitor for added safety. It can be paired together with other safety features to ensure better protection.

Discuss the availability with your local Toyota dealership to get the truck that best fits your needs.

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