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Dealer says car with 210,000 miles only needs oil change

I brought my 2006 Toyota Highlander Hybrid to the dealer Friday with 210,000 miles, mostly highway - 90%+. It has not had a major service since 100,000 miles. The serpentine belt and water pump were done then.

My main objective was for them to give the car a complete once over and tell me EVERYTHING it needs/will need so I can decide if I want to keep it or trade down something newer and smaller as I no longer need an SUV.

They told me that it needs NOTHING. Not a tune up, transmission flush, suspension parts…NOTHING. Is it possible that after 110,000 miles of highway driving, that’s it? Please help, I’m afraid if I bring it elsewhere, I’m going to get a laundry list of stuff and not know what to do.

Thanks in advance.

Has the dealership performed all the proper maintenance of this vehicle between the 100K and 210K mark as listed in your owners manual?

Welcome to world of hybrids where the electric motors (3 of them) share the work load. I’ll bet the gas motor has little more then 50K equivalent wear compared to a standard hylander. Even though the gas motor runs all (most) the time, the load on it is much less and more constant, Not to worry. The drive train will outlast the body.

PS…you may have actually found an honest dealer !

Why worry if you are ready to sell or trade the car anyway? Start shopping for your next car.

Drive on and enjoy it. If it was maintained properly all along it should not require anything extra.

Yes, it is highly possible. Especially with mostly highway mileage. Properly maintained and not abused, it doesn’t even surprise me. I’ve done the same with a number of Toyotas.

Where is that dealership?

I would be surprised if there is not something needed. It could also be that the examination was performed by someone who not as astute as they should be; maybe a guy a year or so out of some bogus technical school. (Names not mentioned.) :slight_smile:

Over the years I’ve had hands on a lot of cars for second opinions and have often found problems (some very serious, such as worn ball joints) that were given a pass.

I’m not taking the dealer’s side or condemning them on this issue; just pointing out that opinions can be subjective.

I assume driving nearly 36k/year is pure highway and likely why the car does not have more wear on it.

The 210,000 mile service is the same as the 30,000 mile service, oil and filter change, tire rotation, replace the engine air filter and cabin air filter.

Your air filters may have been recently replaced, you should ask about the condition of these filters.

The spark plugs should have been replaced @ 120,000 miles, did you make it clear to the service department that you have not been folowing the maintenance schedule?

This vehicle does not have a serpentine belt (there are no belt driven accessories), they may have replaced the timing belt. The timing belt should be replaced every 90,000 miles.

If 90%+ of your driving are highway miles, there is little or no advantage to owning a hybrid…

I don’t agree with that…Brakes??? Tranny fluid??? Spark-Plugs???

If you only plan on keeping the vehicle another 30k miles then sure…but if you plan on reaching 300k miles…then you’ll need/should have other maintenance items.

If the engine has a timing belt and it hasn’t been changed in 100K miles, I’d definitely consider doing that. Same with engine coolant and transmission fluid if they haven’t been done in 50K or so.

The last major service was around 100,000 miles. Since then, only oil changes and filters.

I did make it clear that I hadn’t done anything since 100k. I think at minimum, it needs a tuneup and timing belt. I’ve had the brakes checked and they’re fine.

I understand that the benefits of the hybrid are so much less on the highway, but that wasn’t my circumstance when I bought it and if I keep it around 62 on the hwy, it can go long stretches on flat/downhill road without the engine running. Plus, as Dagosa said, the wear on the engine is less.

Based on the dealer’s reaction when I expressed surprise, I think they were busy and just gave it a very superficial once over. Comments about plugs, belt etc. have confirmed my suspicion that I should have it looked at again by another shop.

You need to pull out the owners manual and put together a list of everything it neess - belts, fluids (change all of them if it’s been 100k), check brakes, etc. Also, aren’t there some hybrid-specific fluid changes that are recommended?

While 99 times out of 100 it’s better to find an independent shop, I’d have them do all the ‘standard’ stuff, but take it to the dealer for anything related to the hybrid system.

, but that wasn’t my circumstance when I bought it and if I keep it around 62 on the hwy

Driving in MA at 62 during rush-hour will get you killed.

This engine does have a timing belt…If it hasn’t been changed in 100k miles and you plan on keeping this vehicle much longer…that would be the first thing I’d consider changing. It’s NOT an interference engine so if it breaks…at least it won’t destroy the engine.

Sounds like the dealer is hoping you’ll buy a new car. That’s where they make most of their money. Find a good independent and let them service your car. There’s no need what-so-ever to go to the dealer.