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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My wife has a 2012 Highlander with a V-6
I have a 2012 RAV4 with a V-6
The manual for the Highlander suggests oil changes at 10k intervals and requires 0-20 synthetic
The manual for my RAV4 suggests oil changes at 5k intervals and requires 5-30 reg or syn
Both cars have the identical engine, correct?
Why the different oil and change specifications? :serious
 

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Same engines different manual writers. I'd pick an oil strategy and use it on both vehicles.
 

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The difference in oil recommendation between the two vehicles' manuals has puzzled us on this forum. If the vehicles are still under warranty and/or have Toyota VSAs (extended service agreements) it is probably best to use the recommended oil in each. If not, I agree with Dr. Dyno's suggestion.
 

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It is indeed a head scratcher. The 3.5l V-6 is approved for 0W20 synthetic in every vehicle except the RAV4. For that one they have stuck with 5W30 and six month/5K mile intervals on every 4.3 V-6. I wonder if Toyota even knows why?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Think I'll just move servicing my entire Toyota family to 5W-20 synthetic.
Both vehicles just slipped out of warranty so it shouldn't matter, me thinks.
 

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Good idea. My Accord calls for 5W-20 conventional so I'm also using it every 5-6K on my RAV4 too.
 

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2011 v6 here. Had my oil changed at the dealer while they replaced the trans under warranty. 5w30 synthetic and the sticker says 10k mile interval change.
 

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My wife's Sienna does the same thing, I just reset it ;)
 

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I have to insert a real humbling experience with oil. I let my RAV4 sit for over a year as I ran another vehicle into the ground. Because I do not like keeping oil in a vehicle for so long despite no new mileage, I had it changed at the dealer. The next day as a routine thing before a trip I checked the oil level. No sign of oil except at the very, very end, maybe 5mm of oil. So, silly me, I went to the dealer (a mile away), and the tech checked it in front of me. "You see, your oil is so new and fresh it's very hard to see on the stick, but you can feel it - it's right on the mark, see?" Duh. Yes, I saw it. We laughed as he said maybe they should add a die to the oil for guys like me.
 

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I have to insert a real humbling experience with oil. I let my RAV4 sit for over a year as I ran another vehicle into the ground. Because I do not like keeping oil in a vehicle for so long despite no new mileage, I had it changed at the dealer. The next day as a routine thing before a trip I checked the oil level. No sign of oil except at the very, very end, maybe 5mm of oil. So, silly me, I went to the dealer (a mile away), and the tech checked it in front of me. "You see, your oil is so new and fresh it's very hard to see on the stick, but you can feel it - it's right on the mark, see?" Duh. Yes, I saw it. We laughed as he said maybe they should add a die to the oil for guys like me.
"...for guys like me." Pico, maybe you should do like I do, viz., SQUINT.:nerd
 

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Pico...........

Fresh oil is extremely difficult to see on the RAV dipstick. I need my glasses on, sunlight, and a magnifying glass to confirm it's at the mark.
 

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You guys are on to me! I often carry a magnifying loupe for those reasons and for some photography. That day I did not.
 

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I have to insert a real humbling experience with oil. I let my RAV4 sit for over a year as I ran another vehicle into the ground. Because I do not like keeping oil in a vehicle for so long despite no new mileage, I had it changed at the dealer. The next day as a routine thing before a trip I checked the oil level. No sign of oil except at the very, very end, maybe 5mm of oil. So, silly me, I went to the dealer (a mile away), and the tech checked it in front of me. "You see, your oil is so new and fresh it's very hard to see on the stick, but you can feel it - it's right on the mark, see?" Duh. Yes, I saw it. We laughed as he said maybe they should add a die to the oil for guys like me.
LOL, that's embarrassing!
 

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I have to wait a couple of weeks usually to get a good reading on the oil, it's almost impossible to see when fresh.

I figure if I put in 6.5 quarts, it should be ok until I can really check it.
 

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I have been driving for 55 years and have always performed my own maintenance. I have always changed oil and filter after 3k miles regardless of what the manual says. No manufacturer will ever void a warrenty because you changed oil to often and the cost of oil and filter is cheap peace of mind. By the way, in all those years and of all the different makes and models, i have NEVER had a mechanical engine failure. This maybe isn't because of my maintenance regimen, but i would rather not change and find out the hard way!
 

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The only difference is engines made 55 years ago are vastly different in tolerances and materials. While changing conventional oil every 3k is ideal, most engines today run on synthetics. Many of these synthetics have additives that really don't become effective until around 5-7 thousand miles. Old engines need a higher zinc content, newer engines don't. Having said that, don't use synthetic if you are going to change your oil every 3k miles :). For more reading Google bob the oil guy!
 
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