2007 AWD Highlander drive shaft and differential maintenance question

Question for the mechanics or fellow owners of a Gen-1 Highlander: I have a 2007 Highlander AWD (V6) that I want to keep as long as practical. I have closely followed the maintenance requirements but I am wondering about these things:

  1. I had the differential fluid changed long ago at 68K. This is only required in the manual for those who tow. I did it once anyway. Since I messed with it, should I now change it again (110K miles now)
  2. Also in the “Only for towing” section is “Replace transfer case oil.” Should I do this at any point, or skip it since I don’t tow?
  3. Are any driveshaft maintenance items required? I cannot find any. Yet, this item rotates constantly. No lube? No re-torque needed on bolts?

I have a good mechanic I trust, but he pretty much does only what I suggest or what he finds is about to fail. Any advice welcome. Thank you

I would change the T case lube on general principles. Won’t hurt, might help. I consider the axle the same. It may not need it but it won’t hurt.

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That translates to ‘change the fluids’.


We’re very generous with your money, aren’t we?

If you don’t mind spending the extra, it can’t hurt, as the others said.

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Oh, and the driveshafts… modern u joints rarely have grease zerks. Replacements sometimes do. Don’t worry about the driveshafts. They are simple and generally reliable. When they start to squeak or clunk, they need service.

I have 140K on the pair of driveshafts and cv joints on my truck. Never touched them, they are fine, and I have towed heavy loads with it.

Thanks, everybody. I feel better knowing I didn’t miss a driveshaft to do. I’ll get the AWD boxes’ fluids changed the next time I have it in.

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Might I suggest buying a repair manual and doing the differential fluids yourself? I personally have a haynes repair manual for my '06 AWD highlander that suggests changing the differential and transfer case (transmission) fluid every 60,000 miles. The differentials are quite easy to do given that you have the proper equipment. But I do not trust myself with the transfer case.