Home > Ask Gary > Do I need to maintain my truck differently than a car?

Do I need to maintain my truck differently than a car?

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I hope you have a Toyota Tundra or Tacoma! If so, maintenance at the Jaffarian Toyota Service Department will keep you truck in certified Toyota parts and easily comply with your warranties. Certainly we service all makes and models, so if you have another truck, we would love to be your service department. Generally, many aspects of maintenance are the same for trucks and cars, but there are some differences. Your owner’s manual will give you the important information you need.

Oil changes are the basics of maintenance and that is so important to extend the life of your truck. However, it is not necessary to change your oil every 3,000 miles which many “quick oil change places” will lead you to believe. Most oils are now designed to last longer. In newer vehicles, you can wait for the maintenance service indicator light to come on. In vehicles from 2010, most often oil doesn’t need to be changed until you go 7,800 miles. In trucks that use synthetic oil, you can often go 10,000 miles between oil changes.

Starting with model year 2011, all Toyota Tundra engines converted to 0w-20 full synthetic motor oil, therefore, the oil needs to be changed every 10,000 miles. The Toyota Tacoma has two options for engine size. The Tacoma with the V6 motor will use 5w-30 motor oil, a semi-synthetic, which requires oil changes every 5,000 miles. The Tacoma with a 4-cylinder engine uses 0w-20 motor oil, a full synthetic blend and must be changed every 5,000 miles as well.

Know that not all oils are the same. For vehicles that use synthetic oils, you get the same oil every time and nothing extra you don’t need. Gas and diesel trucks need different oils. Diesel oils have more additives, which may adversely affect gasoline engine parts. That is why it is so important to go to a dealership that specializes in your vehicle. They will know exact which oil to use. Using the wrong oil will void your warranty.

You may be one of those people who knows how to change your oil, but you may be overfilling your engine. Even if it leaks and you add too much oil, you may be making things worse. Excess oil can end up in the cylinders and cause unwanted burning. If you believe you have a leak, come to Jaffarian Service Department for the repair. Leaking oil will cause permanent stains on your driveway or street. Be sure to put a box top or cardboard under the vehicle until you can bring it in.

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For Toyota Trucks, the following is recommended generally every 5,000 miles:
• Rotate tires and check condition (tread depth)
• Set tire pressure to correct psi
• Check that all exterior light bulbs are functioning
• Inspect front and rear brake components
• Inspect and top off fluid levels
• Perform multi-point inspection with print-out
• Road test the vehicle.

Every 15,000 miles, add the following services:
• Inspect condition of drive axle boots
• Check condition of brake fluid
• Check transfer case and differential fluids
• Check operation of cooling system and/or indication of coolant leak
• Complete inspection of steering and suspension components
• Complete inspection of exhaust system
• Inspect air filter (generally needs to be replaced every 30,000 miles)
• Inspect wiper inserts/blades
• Inspect cabin air filter (if applicable)
• Lubricate propeller shaft (where applicable)
• Inspect fuel lines and charcoal canister
• Reset maintenance/tire pressure warning lights

You know the old saying, “an ounce of prevention…” and that applies here and to all vehicles. The better you take care of your vehicle, the less it will cost over time for expensive repairs that could have been avoided.

Make sure your air conditioning is in good working order, you’re going to need it this week for sure! Let us know how we can help. Our service advisors and certified technicians are here to help you Monday through Saturday.

Ask Gary Jaffarian

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