With 90% of Rav4s sold in the last ten years still on the road today, there is an incredibly good chance that you will come across a Rav4 while shopping for a car, but how long does a Toyota Rav4 last?
Although the overall lifespan of a vehicle depends on several factors, a properly maintained Rav4 should last owners between 200,000 and 250,000 miles, which equals 10 to 12 years at 20,000 miles a year.
However, many owners have reported their Rav4 hitting well over the estimated 250,000-mile mark, with some owners saying theirs hit 400,000 with very few repairs. If this is true or you drive less than 20,000 miles a year, you could get upwards of 20 years of use out of a Rav4.
What Is a Toyota Rav4?
The Rav4 is a compact crossover SUV manufactured and marketed by Toyota. Hitting the markets in 1995, the Rav4 was one of the world’s first compact crossover SUVs. The vehicle was designed to give drivers all the benefits of an SUV without sacrificing the economic benefits of a compact car. The vehicle quickly became popular, and although its design has changed throughout the years, it remains one of the most popular SUVs on the market today.
How Can I Make My Toyota Rav4 Last Longer?
We cannot talk about how long a vehicle could last without talking about ways to extend the life of your vehicle. Most drivers want their vehicle to last as long as possible, and we have included several tips to help you get the most out of your Rav4.
- Respect the break-in period: Buying a new car is exciting, and people often want to get it on the road and see what it can do. However, you can help to extend the life of your vehicle by taking it easy during the first 1000 miles or so. Try not to drive over 55 mph, accelerate evenly, avoid hauling heavy cargo, and do not let the car idle for prolonged periods.
- Driving Tips: There are some driving tips to remember if you want to get the most out of your vehicle. For example, drivers should try to shift the vehicle into neutral when sitting at traffic lights and avoid heavy acceleration or turning the wheel too sharply.
- Be wary of the gas that you use: This does not mean that you have to spend top dollar on premium gas, but just being mindful of where you buy your gas can help a lot in the long run. For example, ask the gas station when the last time they changed their pump filters was. If they cannot answer, or do not even know what a pump filter is, you might want to go somewhere else. Also, try not to fill up close to delivery day. As the truck fills the station’s underground tanks, sediment that has settled to the bottom of the tanks gets stirred up and may end up in your vehicle.
- Read your owner’s manual: Despite widespread belief, the owner’s manual is not just an unnecessary accessory and may actually hold a lot of valuable information about extending the life of your car.
- Check fluids often: By checking the fluid levels often, you will be alerted to any leaks that may signal a bigger issue, and avoid problems caused by empty reservoirs.
- Follow the recommended maintenance schedule: Although the service schedule is simply “recommended,” it was created by individuals who know the car best and should be followed if you want to get the most out of your vehicle.
- Attend to repairs as soon as possible: Although life does not always allow us to do things as quickly as we might like, allowing a minor problem to persist may lead to much bigger problems, which will cost you a lot more money and may reduce the life of your vehicle.
Are Toyota Rav4s Expensive to Maintain?
According to RepairPal, the average annual maintenance cost to own a Rav4 is $429, which is quite a bit lower than the average maintenance cost of its competitor, the Ford Escape, which has an annual average maintenance cost of $600.
Additionally, CAREDGE estimates that a Rav4 owner can expect to spend around $5,531 for maintenance and repairs during the first ten years of owning their Rav4. This is $3,349 less than the industry average for other popular SUV models.
Maintenance Schedule for Toyota Rav4
Typically, the Rav4 will follow a 6 month/5,000-mile maintenance schedule, which means that you should get your vehicle serviced every 6 months or 5,000 miles (whichever comes first). However, this does not mean that every single service will need to be done at 5,000 miles. Below, you can find more information about the recommended maintenance schedule for a Rav4 along with the average price of the recommended services.
|Tire Rotation||Tires should be rotated every 5,000 miles and replaced according to the tire’s mileage specifications.||Price: $35 – $44|
|Brake Linings/Pads Brake Pads/Discs||These should be inspected every 6 months or 5,000 miles and changed at the first sign of wear.||Price: $262 – $312|
|Cabin Air Filter||This should be replaced every 18 months or 15,000 miles.||Price: $66 – $93|
|Coolant System Flush||This should be done at 100,000 miles or at 120 months.||Price: $266 – $281|
|Engine Air Filter||This should be replaced every 36 months or 30,000 miles.||Price: $41 – $50|
|Oil Change||This should be done per the oil’s specifications. Some oil will last 3,000 miles while others can last up to 7,500 miles.||Price: $116 – $129|
|Spark Plug Replacement||This should be done at 120,000 miles or after 144 months.||Price: $115 – $150|
Are Toyota Rav4s Reliable?
According to RepairPal, the Toyota Rav4 has a reliability rating, which is measured based on the cost, frequency, and severity of unscheduled repairs, of 4.0 out of 5.0. This ranks the vehicle 3rd out of 26 for compact SUVs. Additionally, owners can expect to bring their Rav4 into the shop for repairs on average 0.3 times a year, which is about the same as other compact SUVs and a bit lower than the 0.4 times for all other vehicle models.
The probability that the repair will be major is 10%, which is a bit lower than the 11% probability for other compact SUVs and the 12% probability of all other vehicles. Making the Rav4 a pretty reliable vehicle overall.
Are Toyota Rav4s Expensive to Repair?
Although repair costs depend on many factors, such as the year of the vehicle, your location, the repair that is needed, and the shop that you take your vehicle to, the Rav4 is less expensive to repair than other compact SUVs on the market. Below, you will find a list of common repairs along with the estimated price of those repairs.
|Common Car Repairs||Average Price of Repair for Rav4|
|AC Recharge||$123 – $155|
|Brake Bleed||$123 – $156|
|Ball Joint Replacement||$252 – $319|
|Shock or Strut Replacement||$596 – $660|
|Alternator Replacement||$496 – $706|
|Fuel Pump Replacement||$834 – $1,024|
|Timing Belt Replacement||$446 – $707|
What Are the Most Common Problems for A Toyota Rav4?
Although this sturdy little SUV is quite dependable, all vehicles have a list of problems that are common to them. Below you will find the most common problems to plague Rav4 owners and the estimated cost to repair these problems.
|Common Problem||Mileage This Most Commonly Occurs||Average Cost to Repair the Issue|
|Fuel Evaporative Canister Replacement||This is most reported around 106,000 miles and affected 19 model years between 1996 – 2018.||Price: $625 – $641|
|Oxygen Sensor Failure||This commonly occurs around 247,000 miles and affected 12 model years from 1998 – 2014.||Price: $323 – $346|
|Throttle Position Sensor Problems||This commonly occurs around 133,000 miles and affected 10 model years from 1996 – 2008.||Price: $195 – $266|
|Starter Problems||This commonly occurs around 82,000 miles and affected 14 model years from 1997 to 2010.||Price: $356 – $467|
|Excessive Oil Consumption||This commonly occurs around 121,000 miles and affected 5 model years from 2004 to 2008.||This problem can be avoided by keeping up with the oil changes in your vehicle. Price: $116 – $129|
|Oil Line Problems Causing Massive Oil Leak||This commonly occurs around 78,000 miles and affected 8 model years from 2006 to 2013.||Price: $143 – $165|
|EGR Valve Failure||This commonly occurs around 165,000 miles and affected 2 model years from 1988 to 1999.||Price: $479 – $523|
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John Cunningham is an Automotive Technician and writer on Rustyautos.com. He’s been a mechanic for over twenty-five years and has worked for GM, Volvo, Volkswagen, Land Rover, and Jaguar dealerships.
John uses his know-how and experience to write fluff-free articles that help fellow gearheads with all aspects of vehicle ownership, including maintenance, repair, and troubleshooting.