November 29, 2011
Remember when we told you that our 2011 Toyota Sienna was about due for service? We weren't pulling your leg. And we also weren't joking when we said it would be free, courtesy of the Toyota Care complimentary maintenance program.
Our visit to Toyota Santa Monica was quick and slick. We dropped the van off in the morning without an appointment. About 3 hours later our phone rang. The van was ready for pick up. The standard service included an oil change, tire rotation and the Toyota-specific "floor mat inspection."
Now back to the road.
Mike Schmidt, Vehicle Testing Manager @ 21,044 miles
November 09, 2011
I was greeted by this message when I fired up our 2011 Toyota Sienna this morning. Looks like the van is about due for routine maintenance. This 20,000-mile service interval should set us back $80-90, but instead it is free.
All maintenance on our Sienna for its first 2 years or 25,000 miles is covered under the Toyota Auto Care Prepaid Maintenance Program. We've paid nothing out of pocket to date, this visit will cost nothing and our next visit the same. Not too bad.
We'll call to schedule an appointment. Hopefully the dealer can resolve our issue with the sticking doors at the same time.
Mike Schmidt, Vehicle Testing Manager @ 20,102 miles
July 25, 2011
Over the weekend, our 2011 Toyota Sienna began showing this maintenance reminder whenever I started the car. We last changed the oil at 10,756 miles. And though it would be another 285 miles before we actually hit the 5,000 mile mark, we figured it was close enough to take it in for service.
It is especially important to keep to the manufacture's maintenance schedule when you are dealing with free maintenance programs. Failure to do so can void the maintenance program and have potential warranty implications.
April 21, 2011
Yesterday we dropped our 2011 Toyota Sienna SE off at Toyota Santa Monica as directed by the persuasive warning light on the dash. If you recall, we brought the Sienna in for service once before. At that visit we learned the salesman hadn't entered us into their database, making us ineligible for the Toyota Care free maintenance program. Well, that's all worked out now.
"Your oil change and tire rotation are covered under the maintenance program," our service advisor began, "...and the recall. It's also due for the brake light switch recall." He told us that parts were in stock, so we asked them to handle that at the same time.
A few hours later we received a phone call from our advisor. "We don't have the recall part in stock after all. It will arrive tomorrow morning. We can have it ready for you before noon." This time the Sienna actually was ready when he called back.
Total Cost: None
Days out of Service: 1
Mike Schmidt, Vehicle Testing Manager @ 10,756 miles
April 18, 2011
After 10,000 miles of driving our long-term 2011 Toyota Sienna SE is asking for its first oil change. That right folks, its first oil change.
We'll let you know how the dealer treated us and how much the service cost later in the week.
Scott Oldham, Editor in Chief
January 31, 2011
Just over a week ago, I brought our 2011 Toyota SIenna in for it's 5,000-mile service, unsure of whether or not an oil change was warranted. Turned out an oil change wasn't needed, but a tire rotation was.
Then the service writer and I discovered that the Toyota Care paperwork hadn't been filed by the Santa Monica dealer that sold us the van. But I was having the service work done at Quality Toyota, a dealer 60+ miles away in Corona, California. With the van seemingly out of the program, I ended up paying 20 bucks.
Then, last week, I got a phone call from Jim, the service manager at Quality Toyota, who informed me I could come by for a full refund. I hadn't pressed for it, but there he was, apologizing on the phone. Maybe they heard from the Santa Monica dealer as the Toyota Care paperwork was getting straightened out. Maybe the repair code and note put onto my invoice by the service writer was flagged by the computer for follow-up. Maybe someone got wind of the blog. For my part, I intentionally misspelled my name to throw them off the trail in an attempt to get "normal" service.
Either way, Jim made sure I got my $20 back, plus a couple of Mountain High lift tickets for my trouble.
Meanwhile, we've received word that our van's paperwork has been filed and we won't run into this again. Furthermore anyone who bought a Toyota from Jan 1st onwards won't have this problem because the Toyota Care program is now tied directly to the VIN and enrollment paperwork is no longer required.
Dan Edmunds, Director of Vehicle Testing
January 26, 2011
All new Toyotas are supposed to come with free maintenance for two years or 25,000 miles. But when Dan Edmunds took our Sienna in for the first service, he was told he had to pay for the service out of pocket. He asked me to look into the mix up which is turning into a real headache.
My first step was to call the salesman we dealt with and see if he knew anything about it. He directed me to the finance manager who said he would look into it. After four days of calling the dealership and getting bounced around to different people, I finally had an answer.
January 20, 2011
In our last episode, our 2011 Toyota Sienna was showing "MAINT REQD" and "Replace Engine Oil" warnings at 5,000 miles, even though the first change isn't apparently due until 10,000 miles.
I happened to be passing by a Toyota dealer in Corona, California with a couple of hours to spare, so I pointed the swagger wagon into the service drive to see what a random dealer said about the 5k service.
January 18, 2011
Our 2011 Toyota Sienna coughed up a warning light as I crossed the 4,500-mile mark a week ago. Page 685 of the owner's manual says this light will flash for a few seconds at startup beginning 4,500 miles after the last oil change, then burn steadily at 5,000 miles, whereupon the engine oil must be changed.
Then I dug deeper and found that this doesn't jive with the official maintenance schedule, formally published in the supplemental "Warranty and Maintenance Guide", one of those thin booklets packaged with the owner's manual. Page 36 of that document plainly lists 4 items for the 5,000 mile service, none of which are an oil change. Here the first oil change is called for at 10,000 miles.
I called Toyota and was told the supplemental "Warranty and Maintenance Guide" takes precedence. The 10,000 mile oil change interval applies here.
Great. I've got this figured out.
Then Scott went out and crossed 5,000 miles and threw all that out the window. The lamp above burned steadily, as expected, but there was more...