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#1 (permalink) Old 06-18-2011, 01:17 AM
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Maintenance schedule

Just wondering.....what is the wisest thing to do to spend the least and still make sure everything gets maintained over the years?

Should I follow the dealer recommended maintenance schedule, Toyota manual schedule and follow my own maintenance schedule?

Someone once gave me a list of what they did to his 5 Toyota cars and trucks over the last 10 yrs with great success.

Let me know your thoughts.

5k Oil Change
5k Rotate and Balance
10k Check Alignment
30k Air Filter
30k Cabin Filter
30k Transmission Fluid
45k Rear Differential Oil
45k Transfer Case Oil
45k Power Steering Fluid
45k Brake Fluid
45k Engine Coolant
90k Tune Up
90k Timing Belt
90k Thermostat
90k Water Pump

2008 Rav4 Sport V6 - Flint Mica
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#2 (permalink) Old 06-18-2011, 08:39 AM
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Changing the engine oil at the proper intervals is the most important item in your list for increasing the life of your vehicle. It is also required to maintain the warranty on your vehicle. When you bring your vehicle in for an oil change the tech will inspect the air filter and cabin filter. These filters only need to be replaced when they become dirty, not on a scheduled basis.

I would suggest replacing the Transmission fluid, differential oil, transfer case oil, brake fluid, and engine coolant at Toyota's recommended intervals. These intervals do not all agree with what you have listed by the way.

I normally do not balance the tires or check alignment, unless I detect a problem like the car pulling to one side. I do rotate the tires twice a year when I put on/off my winter tires. If you don't see a difference in tread depth between front and rear tires, then I wouldn't even bother with it.

The thermostat and water pump do not require scheduled replacement. Change them when they develop a problem.

Get a tuneup at Toyoto's recommended mileage.

Don't worry about the power steering fluid or the timing belt because your RAV4 doesn't have any.

Rick L Ontario Canada
2008 Silver RAV4 Limited V6 4WD
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#3 (permalink) Old 06-18-2011, 09:14 AM
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Changing the engine oil at the proper intervals is the most important item in your list for increasing the life of your vehicle. It is also required to maintain the warranty on your vehicle. When you bring your vehicle in for an oil change the tech will inspect the air filter and cabin filter. These filters only need to be replaced when they become dirty, not on a scheduled basis.

I would suggest replacing the Transmission fluid, differential oil, transfer case oil, brake fluid, and engine coolant at Toyota's recommended intervals. These intervals do not all agree with what you have listed by the way.

I normally do not balance the tires or check alignment, unless I detect a problem like the car pulling to one side. I do rotate the tires twice a year when I put on/off my winter tires. If you don't see a difference in tread depth between front and rear tires, then I wouldn't even bother with it.

The thermostat and water pump do not require scheduled replacement. Change them when they develop a problem.

Get a tuneup at Toyoto's recommended mileage.

Don't worry about the power steering fluid or the timing belt because your RAV4 doesn't have any.
Here is what someone else told me in another reputable forum.

5K balance tires. Nope, only needed if I notice a vibration at highway speeds.

10K check alignment. Nope, only needed if tires are wearing uneven, or vehicle is pulling to one side, also may be needed if vibration at highway speeds

30k transmission fluid. Do what your owner's manual says. Most likely it will say something like "replace at 60K if towing, or if it changes color to brown from bright pink.

45K Rear Differential Oil, Transfer Case Oil, Power Steering Fluid. That is so laughable that they recommend changing these. As someone as already stated, those are in sealed units and no need to replace.

90k Tune Up Do this only if the vehicle is running rough. The days of doing a regular tune up have long past.

90k Timing Belt. Check your owner's manual. I have an 04 HL 4 cyl that does not have the belt, it has the chain, but your owner's manual will tell you if/when to do this

90k Thermostat. If the temp. of my vehicle is fine, why would I ever change this?

90k Water Pump Nope again, unless I had to change the timing belt as usually they have to remove the water pump anyway. You would also want to change the accessory belts during the timing belt change. Most dealers will have a "timing belt change special" where they will do the belt, water pump, and accessory belts all at once.

I also check all the fluids and tire pressure on my vehicles at least monthly.

2008 Rav4 Sport V6 - Flint Mica
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#4 (permalink) Old 06-18-2011, 09:16 AM
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Changing the engine oil at the proper intervals is the most important item in your list for increasing the life of your vehicle. It is also required to maintain the warranty on your vehicle. When you bring your vehicle in for an oil change the tech will inspect the air filter and cabin filter. These filters only need to be replaced when they become dirty, not on a scheduled basis.

I would suggest replacing the Transmission fluid, differential oil, transfer case oil, brake fluid, and engine coolant at Toyota's recommended intervals. These intervals do not all agree with what you have listed by the way.

I normally do not balance the tires or check alignment, unless I detect a problem like the car pulling to one side. I do rotate the tires twice a year when I put on/off my winter tires. If you don't see a difference in tread depth between front and rear tires, then I wouldn't even bother with it.

The thermostat and water pump do not require scheduled replacement. Change them when they develop a problem.

Get a tuneup at Toyoto's recommended mileage.

Don't worry about the power steering fluid or the timing belt because your RAV4 doesn't have any.
When I check in the Toyota manual it doesn't clearly say when fluids should be changed by the way so what did you mean by that? It only says they should be checked. I don't tow anything, etc...

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#5 (permalink) Old 06-18-2011, 10:43 AM
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When I check in the Toyota manual it doesn't clearly say when fluids should be changed by the way so what did you mean by that? It only says they should be checked. I don't tow anything, etc...
Perhaps this might help.

2008 Scheduled Maintenance Guide

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#6 (permalink) Old 06-18-2011, 10:54 AM
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Perhaps this might help.

2008 Scheduled Maintenance Guide

Thanks, but again all that says is to "inspect" those fluids. It doesn't clearly say they have to be changed. That's where I need to know more vs a dealer telling it has to be changed.

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#7 (permalink) Old 06-18-2011, 12:01 PM
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Thanks, but again all that says is to "inspect" those fluids. It doesn't clearly say they have to be changed. That's where I need to know more vs a dealer telling it has to be changed.
Sorry about that. I have a Canadian RAV4, and the "Owners Manual Supplement" contains the maintenance schedule. This manual looks very similar to the one that I linked to at the RAV4 US site, so I assumed it would have the same information. Apparently not.

Give this link a try. You can enter your current mileage to get started, but once inside you can view the full schedule by clicking on the tabs at the top of the page.

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#8 (permalink) Old 06-18-2011, 01:15 PM
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Toyota considers the transmission fluid and coolant lifetime. That is why there is no change interval. I don't agree with it but I believe that is their thinking.

30K for the cabin air filter is entirely too long. That same filter in my last car was completely trashed at 11,000 miles and less than one year. Obviously the conditions where you live have a great deal to do with it. Since it is so simple to do an annual or twice a year check of the filters condition makes more sense to me.

Tuneup? Change the iridium spark plugs every 100K or so and it's tuned. Something not mentioned is keeping the battery serviced. I have to add water to our batteries every 60 days due to the heat. At three years they will be replaced regardless of how well they work.

Old Bird......sometimes wise
2008 Base V-6 front wheel drive
2008 Limited V-6 front wheel drive
Both with Tow Prep Package

Last edited by RTexasF; 06-18-2011 at 01:17 PM.
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#9 (permalink) Old 06-18-2011, 01:47 PM
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Originally Posted by dinosaur1 View Post
Here is what someone else told me in another reputable forum.


45K Rear Differential Oil, Transfer Case Oil, Power Steering Fluid. That is so laughable that they recommend changing these. As someone as already stated, those are in sealed units and no need to replace.
The rear differential and transfer case are not sealed units and Toyota recommends replacing the oils at 64,000 KM (40,000 Miles).

Your vehicle has electric assist steering, so there is no steering fluid.

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#10 (permalink) Old 06-18-2011, 02:55 PM
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45K Rear Differential Oil, Transfer Case Oil, Power Steering Fluid. That is so laughable that they recommend changing these. As someone as already stated, those are in sealed units and no need to replace.
Sounds like the laugh is on you.

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2008 Base V-6 front wheel drive
2008 Limited V-6 front wheel drive
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