Wednesday, October 12, 2005

Hacking my Camry (sort of)

I've got a 2004 Camry. I took it into the dealer at 4000 miles (they had a $5-for-first-oil-change special, so I bit); all was well. At 5000, a light came on on the dash saying "Maint Reqd" for Maintenance Required. I guessed at the time that the dealer should have reset something but didn't.

So I went in for an oil change today. Asked the guy what was up with the light, and he showed me how to turn it off:


  • Turn key to Acc
  • Hold odometer push-button in
  • Turn key to On
  • Watch the odometer reading turn to dashes
  • Watch the dashes slowly disappear
  • When the dashes all go away, and turn to zeroes, release the odometer button


And voila, the light goes out and stays out for another 5000 miles.

I asked if I could somehow change the setting to have the light come on at some arbitrary mileage (like 3500 or 4000, which is when I like to get my oil changed), but he didn't know of any way to get anything but 5000.

Anyway, thought it was cool, and wish it had been in the manual (not that I would have found it by reading it, of course :).

Update: From the comments on blogspot.com: "make sure you're using the main
odometer; not the trip". Indeed, I had just run across this on my last oil
change, when the service person couldn't get it to reset because it was on
trip. When we put it over to main, it worked fine. Thanks, anonymous
commenter.

47 comments:

Anonymous said...

Dave-
This is great. I have a 2005 Camry and this worked perfectly. Thanks for the posting.
-Red Canoe

Anonymous said...

YES SIREE, THESE ARE PERFECT INSTRUCTIONS. I FOUND SIMILAR INSTRUCTIONS ON ANOTHER SITE. THEY DID NOT WORK AT ALL. THESE DO. THANK YOU

Anonymous said...

Dave,
Excellent instructions!! I followed the instructions and they just do exactly what you described on my 2004 Camry to reset the maint light. Thank you for posting the instructions.

Anonymous said...

These instructions for reset maint reqd message work for a 2005 Highlander perfectly. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Thank you, thank you. I have a 2005 Camry and just got my oil changed. I was quite concerned that the maint req light did not go off. I almost took my car to a dealer.

Thanks for saving me lots of dough.

Anonymous said...

Awesome...Thanks!!!!

Anonymous said...

Great Post! It saved a trip into the dealership.

It worked just as you said for my 2004 Solara as well.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Dave, your tips worked on 2005 Camry.

Anonymous said...

thank you - it works
one note though - make sure you're using the main odometer; not the trip

Anonymous said...

Awesome - worked on a 2005 Scion TC (parent company Toyota). Thanks!

Matziq said...

Thanks for the tip! Worked like a champ on my wife's car. That maint reqd was driving her crazy (the shop forgot to reset it.)

Anonymous said...

Thanks a lot for this very useful info! I followed the maunal and it still had the light on. Your tips is greate!

Anonymous said...

Hello guys,

Is there anyway to interface to the odometer sensors?

thanx in advance

Anonymous said...

Does anyone know how to disable the "Maint Reqd" light entirely? I already have a wife and I don't need my car nagging me about things, too!

Thanks

Anonymous said...

I WORK AT TOYOTA. NOW DAVE...SINCE YOU ARE SO SMART.TELL ALL THESE PEOPLE HOW TO CLEAR A LOW TIRE PRESSURE LIGHT..I HAVE A WIFE AND DONT NEED 3000 PEOPLE NAGGING ME OVER A TIRE PRESSURE LIGHT. AND THE INFO IS IN THE OWNERS MANUAL.

djaquay said...

Sorry, dude, I can't make people RTFM any easier than you can. :)

Dave

Anonymous said...

Do you have to get the oil change always at the dealer? I just had my oil change done elsewhere and your maintenance light tip worked perfect. I have a 2005 Toyota Solara Conv...Thanks

djaquay said...

I've only twice gotten my oil changed at the dealer, and only when it was either more convenient or cheaper than the local quick lube place. So no, you certainly don't need to.

Anonymous said...

I had the same experience. I found the reset instructions in the owners manual.

Anonymous said...

Worked great for my 05 corolla LE. Thanks for the hint!

Anonymous said...

Dave,

Thanks your instructions worked perfect I changed my wife's oil in her highlander for the second time. The first time she went to the dealer to have them reset it but she forgot how it was done. Thanks again

Vincente

Anonymous said...

Totally worked on my Scion xA. Perfectly.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the info!!

Anonymous said...

Thanks a lot.

Anonymous said...

Worked on my 2004 Solara. Much appreciation, as I almost took it to the dealer. Thank You

Anonymous said...

Dave, you are my hero. Instructions on other sites didn't work, but your instructions are perfect!

djaquay said...

Glad to help! (Glad to be preventing trips to the shop, actually :)

Dave

Anonymous said...

thanks dave..it worked on my 2005 corolla.
thanks again george t.

Anonymous said...

One more THANKS! This also works on the Camry Hybrid. Even thogh there's no key, the process is the same. Press the start button (foot off brake pedal) for Accessories On, then the milage reset button as above, and then press the start button (foot on the brake pedal) to turn on the car. Message cleared!

Anonymous said...

YOU THE MAN DAVE!
I've got an '05 Camry and it worked Fantasticly!
-Arthur

Anonymous said...

I recently bought a 2007 Camry and ran into the same problem with the maint req'd light at 5k miles. Your fix worked great. Thanks to you Dave for showing others how to eliminate this Camry annoyance!

djaquay said...

This is cool that it's still working on newer cars. Glad to have helped folks out!

Dave

Anonymous said...

AMEN!! I have a 2006 Solara and the light staying on would bother me. The dealership wanted to charge me $$95.00 just to reset the light. What a rip off!! Your tip worked easily and saved me money! ;) Your a lifesaver! Thanks for the posting.

Anonymous said...

Thanks the Light was driving me crazy! The owners manual should have this information. Works on 2005 Corolla LE.

Anonymous said...

Thanks dude!
Last time I took my car to the dealer for an oil change they suggested I make repairs totalling $2000. Three years later, I am still doing fine.

Anonymous said...

IT WORKS!!!!

Anonymous said...

Thank you sooooooooo much for this info, I was gonna take my car to a dealer, thank you a lot!

Aravind said...

The information was highly helpfull to remove the annoying light from my car dashboard.

Thanks
Aravind

Anonymous said...

definitely works...2004 Toyota Solara!

Anonymous said...

It's great to have people post these things on the web they work and I never read the owners manuel because I can not read books only the Web I don't know why but I can read the web all day long and I can only read a book for less then 5 min anyway thank you very much for your information is worked great.

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for this info! It totally worked!! and I feel so good that I did it myself!

Anonymous said...

I have a 2007 Camry and it totally worked! Thanks so much!!

Anonymous said...

I have v4 2009 Camry and the instructions did work perfectly. However, I am concerned that the light in my case turned on after the Oil change and not before. Has the mechanic goofed up and not changed the oil/filter?

I will appreciate if anyone has had this experience.

djaquay said...

I think in my case, the light came on after the oil change, because it just came on at 5000 miles, and I got my oil changed at 4500 or so. So I would doubt that they did anything but just forget to reset the miles-light-timer-thing.

Dave

Anonymous said...

Hi All, I read all these comments. Would that means it reset the odometer? That means if I sell my car I can say it only ran 5000 miles..??

Correct me if I am wrong? Honestly I did not understand. But I do have this problem. Please suggest. Thanks

Anonymous said...

Dave,
You are a God send! Even my regular mechanic needed to contact someone to reset the light with my previous oil change. I have a 2004 Sienna, the manual states when the "MAINT REQD" indicator lights up to change the engine oil, then in the do-it yourself maintenance section in the rear of the manual it only tells you grade and capacity of engine oil with a closing statement of "Please contact your Toyota dealer for further details" so much for the "do-it-yourself-er help!" By the way, my Sienna trips at 7400 miles, so my guess it can be set for different mileage. The "Scheduled Maintenance Guide" recommends two different intervals of 5000 or 7500 miles dependant on the type of driving conditions subjected to the vehicle. My dealership recommended 5000 miles, while my service mechanic still stands on the old 3000 mile limit!
Thank you again,
Glenn- Tucson

djaquay said...

You're quite welcome, Glenn. Nice to know that this (by far my most popular blog post) is still helpful to folks.

And to Anonymous, above Glenn's post, uh, no, pretty sure they won't let you reset your odometer. Sorry. :/