Ok, that title is a bit reaching but let me first off start with observations of my "hot chocolate cup smiley face light dusting miracle" : after finishing a hard afternoon of shoveling of what was suppose to be light dusting of snow I was amused at this as it made me smile and totally changed my mood. I mean who's happy at chipping away at packed snow in 20 degree cold wind and with crisp white snow blinding you in the face?
But this isn't what was on my mind, what I really want to talk about is my Toyota Hybrid Camry - I think it's on the recall list but not sure now. Either way the whole pedal think is scaring the crap out of me. But it's not the gas pedal issue that pisses me off - I mean this happens from time to time, kudos to Toyota for taking the high road and doing what's right except for the maintenance light . . .
About 3K miles ago my maintenance light came on and wouldn't go off. When I finally got to taking it in thinking this was important, it's a hybrid after all, I was told what was part of this process: I got the typical Oil change, top off of fluids, replaced filters, tire rotation which didn't include the alignment, PVC valve and some additive put in that is suppose to coat the fuel injection system which you can't buy in an auto store. All this for the low low price of $300.
But wait, I'm suppose to be getting free oil changes for the life of my car - I said this. Oh, we can knock off $20. Serious? I thought the normal cost of that service was closer to $35? It took 3 more phone calls to 3 different people before I finally had the price down to $200 all because of this stupid dashboard light. I really need a light to tell me it's time to rotate my tires? I mean hello? I'm getting signs in my hot chocolate cup I don't need Toyota dashboard warning lights to give up more dough.
I hate warning lights that really don't have anything to do with something that's wrong but instead are a means to get me to pay the dealership for overpriced items I could get for half price at Track Auto. But this is what I did get for my money . . . the process to turn off the warning light.
After repeated requests one of the techs came out and showed me how to deal with the warning light. So here is the process if you own a Toyota Camry Hybrid to turn off the maintenance light and it won't cost you a dime:
Hit the power on button once without starting the car
Press the odometer stick on the dash until it says Odo A
Hit the power button again until the cars electrical accessories are off
Press and hold the odometer stick while pressing the power button twice and wait till you see the screen say "resetting maint mode"
When the flashing indicator lights finish let go and now start the car as normal.
Ahh yes, the dashboard of life - did I ever tell you how much I miss a tachometer? The gauge they have on the Hybrids that show my fuel efficiency doesn't do it for me. It's the most useless gauge I have ever seen, bring back my tach, let me know how hard those chipmunks are turning in there before I inadvertently accelerate into the poor schmuck in front of me on the DC beltway!