All Wheel Drive Auto: Independent Seattle Subaru Service


Servicing A Toyota Highlander Hybrid.

Pictures by Scott Chytil

So you are thinking about buying a hybrid.  But is a owning hybrid right for you?

With gas prices once again on the rise, there is a good chance that the thought of owning a hybrid vehicle will cross your mind.   There are significantly more choices now then there were just a couple of years ago and the number of hybrids on the road is on the rise. 

We will break down the first real service on this 2007 Toyota Highlander.






The current trend is to offer the same vehicle in two different versions one being an all gasoline internal combustion engine and the other a “hybrid” of a internal combustion engine and electric vehicle combination. When looking under the hood of this 2007 Toyota Highlander Hybrid one of the first things you will see is the heart and soul of the hybrid system.   While it is important to observe precautions when servicing the vehicle, the maintenance may be easier then you think. 

scp_20080304_3059.jpg inverter coolant

This vehicle has a separate inverter cooling system.  The level and condition must be inspected in addition to the engines cooling system.  


Most of the maintenance of this Toyota Highlander Hybrid is pretty straight forward, such as the removal and installation of the air filter.




This vehicle utilizes a cabin filter which is located in the dashboard area behind the glove box and we can see that at 15,000 miles it is ready to be replaced.  The purpose of the cabin filter is to help clean up the air you breathe while in the vehicle.  It is important if your vehicle does have a cabin filter that the filter is inspected at least once a year and replaced as necessary as a restricted or dirty cabin filer can reduce the amount of air coming into the cabin.



 scp_20080304_3055.jpg   scp_20080304_3056.jpg                                                                       

This is a cabin filer that is just one year old.



Changing the engine oil on this Hybrid is just like changing the oil on any other vehicle and as is rotating the tires.

One thing of note here is that the main vehicle battery is very small and this should be observed if leaving one of the vehicle accessories on such as the radio or a light for an extended period of time. 






Here is one major difference, the rear drive system of this vehicle is all electric and where there used to be a mechanical differential assembly that only required the fluid to be changed, there Is now instead an electrical drive device that does not have the same maintenance requirements as its predecessor.




Over all this Highlander hybrid 15,000 mile service is no more challenging than a 15,000 mile service on an all gasoline version of the same vehicle.  While there are vast differences, the minor maintenance intervals are still pretty straight forward.  And the overall cost of the early maintenance requirements is relatively the same.   Stay tuned for the 30k service and we will continue to try and keep you informed.

A special thanks to Scott Chytil of Scott Chytil photography for these exceptional pictures. 


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