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Toyota warranty

I bought a 2009 Toyota Rav4. My wife uses the car and it has low milage. It has just reached 4,000 miles in two years. We took it to service and the dealer told me it won’t have warranty because I should have done the service every 6 months even if it didn’t have the milage. They had to change a gear that is moved by the timing chain and is supposed to help modify the timming of the valves according to driving conditions. They explained it might have failed due to lack of maintenance. Is this reasonable?

Since most of us don’t have a RAV4 owner’s manual sitting around, you’ll need to tell us what your manual says about changing the oil.

Yes, this is very possible.

If you only accumulated 4k miles in 2 years, it is very possible that oil sludge has begun to build up in the engine, and oil sludge leads to lubrication problems and engine damage. That is why the oil is supposed to be changed every 6 months, regardless of odometer mileage.

If you don’t believe either me or the service manager, take a look at the Toyota Maintenance Schedule that should be sitting in your glove compartment. To the best of my knowledge, it states that oil changes and other maintenance should be done every 5k miles or 6 months, whichever comes first. In other words, no matter how few miles you drive in 6 months, you need to change the oil and perform other maintenance services every 6 months in order to keep the warranty in force.

Depending on how those 4k miles were accumulated over the space of 2 years, it is very possible that the engine was subjected to the absolute most severe conditions that are possible. Please tell us–When the car is driven, how many miles is it typically driven before the engine is shut off?

If you did not follow the recommended service schedule in your owner’s manual, then you’re stuck.

What exactly was it doing that caused you to stop in for “service”?

It really should not be sludge issues with syn oil. Not at this milage. Regardless of the two years. Not enough time engine time to build up a really thick gooey layer. I also don’t believe that the service interval issue has any bearing on the repair issue. I would check the repair history on the rav4 engines with this feature. Check this TSB TSB0146-10. Follow this link.

That mileage number over possibly going on3 years depending on the date the car was purchased is by far the worst way of accumulating mileage on a car.

A few questions I might ask would be if the motor oil in that car has never been changed and if the dealer said sludge is behind this problem. If so, then warranty is null and void.

Another point that could be made would be is that if sludging is behind this problem in the engine’s upper end then one has to wonder what it looks like inside the oil pan.
Yet another point might be exactly how much oil was in the engine when it went to the dealer.

Is the OP going to respond to the questions asked by me and ok4450?

If one can afford a car one can afford an oil change twice a year.

I drive my 2006 Matrix ~4000 miles a year.
I change the oil every 6 months.
Simple as that.

It is a reasonable explanation on why it failed.

Whether the true case or not who knows. It depends on how those 4000 miles were driven. For example in 30 mile incriments I don’t believe it. On Nantucket then for sure the oil is likely junk.

Is This Toyota A Hybrid ?

I would hope someone driving 2000 miles a year wouldn’t waste money on a hybrid.
At 2000 miles a year I would drive that convertible 1966 Sedan DeVille I had a chance to buy a few years ago.

I’m Asking Whether It’s Hybrid Or Not Because Of TSBs Pertaining To Valve Train Issues On These Toyotas. There Have Been Problems And Some Are Specific To Hybrids And May Not Have Anything To Do With Maintenance, But Rather Manufacturing Defects.

As far as “wasting money,” that’s an individual’s choice and right. What is a waste to one could be a pleasure to another.


There are no rav4 hybrids that I know of. Either its a 4 cylinder or its a 6 cylinder “conventional” drivetrain.