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What Does The Maintenance Required Light Mean?

Unlike a check engine light, a maintenance required light is based strictly on a car’s mileage and when the light was previously reset. A qualified service technician can diagnose the car’s maintenance needs and provide the necessary services, such as changing the engine oil and oil filter or providing a general vehicle inspection.

Since the maintenance required light has no way to determine the condition or level of the engine oil, it’s important to bring your car into a trusted auto shop to make the needed service changes.

What Does a Flashing Maintenance Required Light Mean? A car's maintenance required light ready for service at A+ Japanese Auto Repair Inc. in San Carlos, CA

Every time you start the car, the maintenance required light will turn on for about six seconds to test the bulb, and then go out. A flashing maintenance required light comes on after 4,500 miles. This is an alert for you to make an appointment for car service because you are getting close to the 5,000-mile service interval. The maintenance required light will remain on and be solid after the mileage interval reaches 5,000 miles since the light was reset. This is the final reminder to bring your car in for service.

What Type of Service Is Due When the Maintenance Required Light Is On?

The routine 5,000-mile service called for by the maintenance required light in a Toyota or Lexus, for example, includes an engine oil and filter change, tire rotation, multi-point inspection, as well as an inspection and adjustment of all fluids. Service requirements for different makes and models may vary.

How Much Will It Cost When the Maintenance Required Light Comes On?

When you buy a new car, the 5,000-mile service intervals are usually covered up to 25,000 miles by the manufacturer for free. After that, the 5,000-mile service can range anywhere from $75 to $135, depending on where you live. There are also more major services that will be required when you hit higher mileage points, such as timing belt repairs and ignition tune-ups. These will coincide with a typical 5,000-mile service interval.

How Do I Turn Off My Maintenance Required Light?

There may be a time when you will want to turn off your own maintenance required light. This generally would be if either the technician forgot to reset the light when they performed the service or if you did your own service on your car. The reset procedure is pretty straightforward.

Follow this procedure to reset the maintenance required light on most Lexus vehicles (with video):

1. Turn the ignition switch to the ON position.

2. Set the Odometer/Trip Display to the ODO mode.

3. Turn the ignition switch to the OFF position.

4. Depress and HOLD the Trip Meter RESET button while turning the ignition switch to the ON position.

5. The maintenance required light will:

- 5a. Illuminate solidly for three seconds

- 5b. Blink for two seconds

- 5c. Illuminate solidly for one second

- 5d. Turn off

6. Release the Trip Meter RESET button.

7. Turn the ignition to the OFF position.

8. Turn the ignition to the ON position, and confirm that the maintenance required light goes out. NOTE: If the light continues to blink in Step 5a, turn the ignition off, and repeat the procedure from Step 1.

Follow this procedure to reset the maintenance required light on most early-model and late-model Toyota vehicles (with video):

1. Turn the ignition switch to the ON position.

2. Set the Odometer/Trip Display to the ODO mode (early model) or to Trip A (late model).

3. Turn the ignition switch to the OFF position.

4. Depress and HOLD the Trip Meter RESET button while turning the ignition switch to the ON position.

5. The maintenance required light will:

- 5a. Flash while the ODO screen will have five blank lines with one disappearing each second.

- 5b. After all ODO lines disappear, the maintenance required light should turn off.

6. Release the Trip Meter RESET button.

7. Turn the ignition to the OFF position.

8. Turn the ignition to the ON position, and confirm that the maintenance required goes out. NOTE: If the light continues to blink in Step 5a, turn the ignition off, and repeat the procedure from Step 1.

What Do the Other Warning Lights Mean on Your Dash?

If you are confused about any of the other warning lights, feel free to peruse our articles addressing the following issues:

Schedule an Appointment With A+ Japanese Auto Repair Inc.

If you live in the San Carlos area and your car’s maintenance required light has come on, bring it in to A+ Japanese Auto Repair Inc. Our service technicians can diagnose your service requirement and make any necessary repairs or services to have you back on the road in no time. We service a large variety of import vehicle makes, including Honda, Acura, Toyota, Lexus, Nissan, Infiniti, Hyundai, Isuzu, Mitsubishi, Subaru, Mazda, Kia, and Scion. Schedule an appointment with us today.

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Disclaimer: This article is provided for general informational purposes only. It is not intended as advice for your particular vehicle, and should not be relied upon for that purpose. Please consult a qualified automotive maintenance professional to determine the maintenance and repair needs for your vehicle

Categories:

Car Maintenance
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