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Toyota Car Tips & Advice

  • Need more specifics? Scroll through the topics in the navigation tabs above to see other general car care tips.
  • Own a Toyota? Click here to track your service history, schedule maintenance, view available accessories, and more.
  • Check out the Toyota Owner’s FAQ to find answers to your most pressing questions about fuel efficiency.

Want to improve your gas mileage? Want to know which car care habits are the best to develop? Perhaps you want to know what to keep in your car in case of emergency. Look no further than Toyota for useful, actionable car tips and advice. Read on for an overview of driving and car tips you can start using today.

Fuel Economy - Car Tips

There are simple and often free things you can do that may lead to fuel savings. Read on for car tips that help optimize fuel economy:

  • Inflate your tires to their correct PSI level. Inflated tires can potentially improve fuel efficiency by 3.3%, requiring less gas to go the same distance than an under-inflated tire.
  • Keep records of your car's fuel economy. If you notice an abrupt change in your car’s fuel economy, this could mean your car needs service or will soon need something serviced.
  • Keep a clean engine air filter. This is easy to replace and can impact gas mileage.
  • Go to an auto repair shop or Toyota service center for service as soon as possible if the "check engine" light comes on. Even if it seems the vehicle is running fine, this could mean there is an issue with your vehicle’s engine.
  • Only carry what you need. For every 100 lbs. cargo you haul in your car, your fuel economy could potentially lower by 1%. The effect of extra weight is more dramatic the smaller the vehicle you drive.
  • Fill up with the recommended gas grade found in your car's owner’s manual.
  • Keep up with your manufacturer’s recommended maintenance schedule as detailed in your vehicle’s owner’s manual for your car.
  • Get regular oil changes at recommended intervals. See your owner's manual.
  • Always use manufacturer recommended oil types as well as other fluid types.
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Fuel Economy - Driving Tips

  • If you already have a fuel-efficient car, you might be able to improve fuel efficiency by following these car tips.
  • Do you have a truck or other large vehicle? Following this car advice may help make it more fuel-efficient.
  • How you drive your car impacts gas mileage. This advice may seem obvious, but the proof is in the pudding.

Most people want to improve their fuel economy. Whether you commute for work, love taking road trips, or just care about the well-being of the environment, you can always do more regarding the management of your vehicle’s fuel costs. When it comes to getting the best fuel economy, a great starting point is buying a fuel-efficient car. Toyota has many impressive alternative fuel vehicles for you to consider.

Here are the top car tips to help improve fuel economy while driving:

  • When possible, combine your errands. This will reduce extra unnecessary trips and fuel waste.
  • When coming out of a complete stop, accelerate slowly. Avoid “jackrabbit starts” -- don’t floor it from a stop -- as these are usually rougher on your car and can decrease your fuel economy.
  • Slow down. If you travel at 60 mph instead of 70 mph on your 20-mile highway commute, you could save an estimated 1.3 gallons of gas a week depending on the vehicle and situation.
  • In the winter, don't spend too long warming up your car. This is a fuel waster. Don’t drive too soon, either. Look at your car’s coolant temperature or ambient temperature gauge. Start driving when your engine is at normal operating temperature.
  • In the summer, avoid driving during the hottest times of the day. By driving when it is cooler, you can conserve fuel. Cooler air is denser and can help gas mileage.
  • While it may seem counter-intuitive, use air conditioning. Modern car air conditioners are efficient and create less drag on the engine than driving with the windows open at higher speeds.
  • Be proactive as you drive and look for places where you will need to brake. When approaching a red light or stop sign, take your foot off the gas early. Even that small pause in wasted acceleration can help improve your fuel economy.
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Car Tips Basics - What to Have in Case Your Car Breaks Down

  • Given all of the time you spend in your car, are you prepared for a flat tire? How about more serious types of car breakdown or emergency?
  • A simple car emergency kit will save you worry. Heed this car advice now to be prepared for the unexpected later.
  • There are a number of items that can come in handy during an on-the-road emergency.

Did you know that Americans with full-time, 5-day-a-week jobs commute an average of 200 hours every year? That's just the average commuter’s work trips. That doesn't even factor in trips to the store, bringing the kids to the park, or the week-end road trip getaway.

What to Keep in a Roadside Emergency Kit

Reflective hazard signs are critical if you have broken down in a place where there is significant traffic or poor lighting conditions. Road flares and reflective signs will help others see you while you are waiting for assistance.

Having a USB charging stick can also help you charge your phone to call for help. This is a very small piece that could be a big help if you find your vehicle battery and phone is dead in an emergency.

As a rule, it’s good practice to have a tool kit with a variety of necessary items for emergency situations. Any good roadside emergency kit should have a solid assortment of tools. You should have the basics. This includes a screwdriver, pliers, socket wrench and sockets with your vehicle’s most common socket size nuts and bolts, pen knife, and key wrenches.

Carrying bottled drinking water will also be beneficial. Though it seems unlikely, you could get stuck in a situation where you need water. Sometimes tow trucks get busy, especially in bad weather, and you may be waiting a long time. Having extra water could be a good idea to keep in your kit -- just in case.

Like a tool kit and water, jumper cables are another essential car tool that even teen drivers know about. Something as simple as leaving on an interior light in your car can drain the battery. Or, a super cold day can make it hard for some cars to start. Having jumper cables could be the difference between you getting back on the road quickly and you waiting for roadside assistance.

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ToyotaCare and ToyotaCare Plus

  • Consider extending the term and breadth of services covered for your new Toyota with ToyotaCare Plus. Learn more about this service, the different ToyotaCare Plus plans, and whether you qualify.

Driving a new Toyota? From the purchase or lease date of your new Toyota, ToyotaCare gives you 24/7 Roadside Assistance for 2 years and unlimited miles. While having an emergency kit in your vehicle is always a good idea, ToyotaCare can be your first line of defense.

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The Best Car Advice

The best car tips are the ones you actually use! By following some of these car tips, you will be on your way to a healthy driving relationship between you, your car, and the road.

Here is a quick cheat sheet of sorts to get you through average driving situations:

  • Beware. Distracted driving comes in many forms. Believe it or not, distracted driving predates the invention of the cell phone. From texting to eating to chatting with a friend, a number of things we do in our cars can distract us from focusing on the road.
  • It can be easy to become overly confident and begin to drive carelessly. Don’t become complacent behind the wheel. Stay vigilant!
  • Every car is different. The best car advice says to learn about each car you get in. If you are driving a car that is new to you, familiarize yourself with it before taking off. Driving a Toyota? Learn more about your vehicle by reading your owner’s manual.
  • Check intersections for pedestrians or aggressive/unsafe drivers.
  • Use all of your senses when driving, as it can enhance your ability to respond to other drivers and pedestrians.

But most of all, don’t worry about what other drivers might be thinking. Come across a tailgater? Stay alert and don’t engage other drivers who might want to affect your driving. As for backseat (or front passenger seat) drivers: tune them out just like a bad song on the radio.

Follow the rules of the road and drive safely. Great car advice means staying focused on driving, no matter the pressures. And with a reliable, quality Toyota vehicle, you can enjoy a comfortable drive with peace of mind.