Understanding Your Tire Pressure Warning Light

300px-TPMS_warning_icon.svg       Most new Toyota vehicles, model year 2003 and newer, come equipped with a tire pressure warning light that turns on when it senses a change in tire pressure. Tire pressures are most likely to fluctuate with rapid and drastic temperature changes, which in Vermont, tend to fall around the seasonal changes.

The TPMS, Toyota’s Tire Pressure Monitoring System, is installed on the valves of your tires and is designed to provide a low pressure warning for all five (that’s right, five) tires on your vehicle.  The most common trigger for the warning light is low pressure in the vehicle’s spare tire. Most customers are unaware that their spare tire also comes equipped with a tire pressure monitor, and the TPMS is only installed on full-sized spares, not donut spares. The light may also turn on when a tire is punctured, warning you of a flat before it happens.

If you’ve checked all five tires and they’re all correctly inflated and there are no puncture marks, it is possible that your TPMS is damaged and/or malfunctioning. A damaged TPMS can be caused by improper inflation or damage during a tire mount and balance, most often when it is performed by a technician who is unfamiliar with the system.  If you feel this is the case, make sure to call or stop by Heritage Toyota Scion and our staff will gladly diagnose the problem for you and if necessary replace the faulty sensors.

Service Tips: Oil Change

Performing regular maintenance on your vehicle is one of the easiest ways to keep your vehicle in peak condition, maintain its long-term health, and help you get the most out of your investment. One of the most important parts of regular maintenance is the oil change.

Why are regular oil changes important?

Oil is one of the most important, but underappreciated components of your vehicle’s overall health. Your vehicle’s engine has hundreds of constantly moving parts, many of which are rubbing against one another causing extreme heat. As the oil travels through your engine, it cools and lubricates these parts, helping your engine run at maximum efficiency.

Having a regular oil change schedule is important because of the constant temperature fluctuations your engine faces everyday. As your oil ages it allows dust and debris to make their way into your engine and contaminate your oil, making it less effective.

How often should I change my oil?

Most manufacturers recommend that you get an oil change every 5,000 miles; but many newer model vehicles come with advanced synthetic oil that can last up to 10,000 miles between changes. Check your owner’s manual to find out more about your recommended maintenance schedule.

New England’s wide range of temperatures throughout the year also put added strain on both your engine and your oil. Even in warm weather, during a short commute your engine may not warm up all the way, which can affect the life of your oil in the long term.

Need to know if your oil needs changing? Get a lesson on checking your engine fluids from the H-Team:

Connect Your Phone to Toyota Entune

Delivery Specialist Jim Donovan takes you through a step by step process on how to pair your smart phone to the Toyota Entune system. Toyota Entune features Bluetooth audio streaming, hands-free calling, optional navigation, AUX and USB ports, optional SiriusXM and more! To learn more about the capabilities of the Toyota Entune system, check out Toyota Motor Company’s webpage here

How To Reset Your Maintenance Light

One of the questions we’re often asked is how to reset or turn off the maintenance light. On a newer model Toyota, the maintenance light turns on every 5,000 miles to remind you of an oil change and tire rotation; however, many new cars use synthetic oil that only needs to be changed every 10,000 miles. Ergo, every 5,000 miles, a better-safe-than-sorry reminder light pops on, and driving to the dealership to have a technician reset the light may be hassle, so we wanted to share how to reset this light in the convenience of your own driveway. Remember, the light also comes on to remind you of a tire rotation which should be performed every 5,000 miles.

How to Reset your Maintenance Required Light:

  1. Turn off your engine while the odometer is in the regular total mileage mode, not “Trip A” or “Trip B”
  2. Push and hold the mileage reset button while turning the key into the “on” position
  3. You will see the odometer digits countdown to zero and once they all are at zero, the maintenance light has reset and you may release the button

With those instructions, we hope that you’ll be able to reset this light if you choose to do so. If you feel uncomfortable doing this or are unsure why your maintenance light has turned on, please do not hesitate to call or stop by Heritage Toyota Scion.