Low Fuel Warning - 2014 Toyota Highlander Limited Long-Term Road Test

Edmunds.comEdmunds.com Member, Administrator, Moderator Posts: 10,315
edited December 2014 in Toyota
imageLow Fuel Warning - 2014 Toyota Highlander Limited Long-Term Road Test

The low-fuel warning light on our Toyota Highlander turns on with only 13 miles remaining. Here's why.

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  • kirkhilles1kirkhilles1 Member Posts: 863
    We Americans are definitely funny about our gas gauges. We want them to drop and then rise again and then show empty when its not empty. Reminds me of that Seinfeld episode (doesn't everything) where they go until they run out of gas. My '01 I30 low gas light comes on with 5 gallons left. Crazy. In a modern vehicle, there really needs to be a setting where you can change it. I realize that they don't want to ever have you run out of gas when it says there is distance remaining (just due to estimating), but 1 gallon is more than enough reserve.
  • redskinsdmvredskinsdmv Member Posts: 52
    I try not to use the reserve gallons as I've been told it will wear on the fuel pump. Don't know how much truth there is to that though.
  • texasestexases Member Posts: 10,309
    With modern high pressure fuel injection systems I'd avoid running one dry.
  • darthbimmerdarthbimmer Member Posts: 606
    I like the characteristically German precision in the BMWs I've owned. When the needle indicates "E" and the trip computer shows fewer than 10 miles left, the tank is within the last 0.5 gallons of its stated capacity.
  • s197gts197gt Member Posts: 486
    thanks mike!

    you know after i posed that question i thought about it some more and the low fuel light doesn't really bother me. i understand it is an "idiot light" and doesn't really tell me anything other than what it tells me: i'm a little low on fuel.

    but the fact the car also indicates that you have 13 miles left with 2.9 gallons still in the tank?!

    they aren't even trying to be accurate with that algorithm!

    many years ago i panicked because a girlfriend decided to run her car down to 1 mile to E before picking me up at home, handing the keys to me, and saying "let's go out to eat and can you get some gas on the way?" i didn't realize the predicament she put us (really... me) in until i'm driving and look down and think "whoa!" i thought for sure we were gonna be stranded on the side of the road and guess who would be the one walking to the gas station???

    in hindsight my near panic attack was unfounded.
  • vonlucifugevonlucifuge Member Posts: 1
    I had an '05 Toyota Solara. Its spec said it had an 18.5 gallon tank, but when it said empty, I only ever put in 14.5 gallons. However, if I pushed it beyond the point that it said empty, it adjusted both the fuel gauge and the miles to empty display to match how much fuel I put in last time. I eventually got to about 17 gallons before it said it was empty and decided I didn't want to push it any further.
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