Toyota Highlander is a luxurious SUV, and it is famous among people due to its off-roading features. This vehicle is best for off-roading due to the presence of an AWD system which provides a better grip on the tires.
The AWD feature provides power to all four wheels for their simultaneous movement and offers better traction on snowy and muddy roads.
What Does Check AWD System Mean on Toyota Highlander? Check AWD system light turns on in the Toyota Highlander dashboard due to an issue in this system. The warning light appears on the screen due to a problem with the transmission system, faults in the wheel’s speed sensors, and the ignition remains on. When this warning light appears, attach the OBD-II scanner and read the fault codes to detect the actual problem and fix the issue.
It is necessary to resolve the problem of the AWD system for the safety of your vehicle. Driving with a check light also increases the risk of damage to other components.
- 1 What is the AWD System in Toyota Highlander?
- 2 What is the meaning of Check AWD System on a Toyota Highlander?
- 3 What should I do when check AWD light turns on?
- 4 Is it safe to drive Toyota Highlander with a check AWD light on?
What is the AWD System in Toyota Highlander?
AWD system is the modern feature of all the SUVs and stands for all-wheel drive. Therefore, it is beneficial in all types of vehicles to provide power to all the wheels.
Its primary purpose is to distribute power from the transmission system. In addition, it supplies power to the front and rear wheels.
It is also necessary to provide better traction and maintain the tire’s grip on the roads. People who live in snowy and muddy areas buy Toyota Highlanders because of their AWD features.
This feature in the vehicles can help rotate all the wheels in an emergency. In addition, it is suitable for off-roading, where all the tires must maintain their grip on the road.
The muddy and snowy roads can also cause slipperiness while driving on these roads. Again, the engagement of the AWD system helps in this situation.
When one or two of your front tires are stuck in snow or mud, the other two will help to move forward with better acceleration.
It is also helpful to maintain the weight distribution due to extra components that transfer power to the rear end of the vehicles.
This system provides better control and stability while driving on uneven and rough terrains.
The turning on of this light shows the signal’ check AWD’. The light will blink on the dashboard due to some issue in this feature, and you have to fix it.
What is the meaning of Check AWD System on a Toyota Highlander?
Many people complain that light will appear on the dashboard while engaging the AWD feature in their vehicles.
Therefore, I have added the different reasons that will cause this indicator to come on the screen of the SUVs.
Problem with the transmission system
The check light turns on in your vehicle due to a faulty transmission system.
The transmission system is essential to supply the power from the engine to all four wheels for better traction on the road.
When the problem comes with this system, all four wheels cannot help propel the vehicle forward for their smooth movement.
The fluid is present in this system to lubricate the gears for their easy changing. The dirty fluid due to the addition of contaminants causes the problem.
The leakage of transmission fluid and their old age can also affect the AWD feature of the vehicle. It will also produce a grinding sound and make the shifting difficult.
The transfer case is also present in this system which contains the fluid for shifting gears. However, the dirty transfer case fluid makes the shifting of gears difficult.
People face difficulty in engaging and disengaging this system according to road conditions. In addition, the missing fuel caps or fuel leakage from the gaskets also cause this issue.
Many times, the tires of the SUVs become bad after driving on poor and uneven roads. When you change the tires and replace them with the ones with incorrect size.
The addition of incorrectly sized tires also affects the transmission system, and light appears on the screen to make you aware of the problem.
Faulty speed sensors
The speed sensors are the safety feature present in the latest models of SUVs. It tells about the speed of the vehicles on the speedometer.
The computer system detects this data and uses this information to provide the RPMs and helps shift gears.
These sensors become faulty during driving in hilly areas and uneven terrains. The faulty sensors turn off the vehicle’s stability and traction control features.
When this feature turns on, the check AWD system light will appear on the dashboard to reduce the risk of accidents.
The gears are not engaged, and the tires cannot maintain stability and more traction on the road.
In addition, the wheel’s speed sensors become bad after exposure to outside road elements for a longer time.
In addition, age-related wear and tear also start to produce damage to its magnetic component.
The faulty speed sensors cannot provide the proper signals for shifting gears and speed maintenance.
You should not drive it with faulty sensors while engaging AWD because of loss of traction and stability.
Driving in sloppy areas with loss of traction and wheel stability increases the risk of accidents due to less grip of tires.
The faulty speed sensors also cause differences in the rotational speed of all tires, which is also problematic.
The ignition system in SUVs needs to be turned off after starting the vehicle. This is because the engine provides enough power for their movement.
The issues in the ignition system will keep them turned on, and the check AWD warning light will appear on the dashboard.
The main purpose of turning this light on is to reduce the risk of damage. The continuously turning on of the ignition system will misfire the engine and damage its components.
The ignition system of the SUVs remains on after starting the engine because of overheating in the combustion chamber.
The overheating in this chamber continuously burns the air/fuel mixture and causes this problem. In addition, the issues also come due to damaged and worn-out spark plugs.
Driving on poor roads and hilly areas takes more power while moving and causes the spark plugs to wear out and malfunction.
The leakage of air/fuel mixture due to the faulty transfer pump also cause the AWD light to blink on the screen of the Toyota Highlander.
The faulty power relay and disturbance with idle speed will also cause this warning light to appear.
Faulty AWD system
The problem comes with this system while driving on snowy, muddy, and icy roads.
Due to external leakage of the clutch, the problem occurs after engaging this feature during driving.
The problem with the working of this part also occurs due to a bad differential clutch.
In addition, the improper filling of fuel while replacing the pumps and gaskets also affects their functioning.
When All wheel drive is not working in your SUVs, then it shows that vehicle is not moving forward after providing acceleration.
The rear wheels cannot help in the forward movement by pushing action.
What should I do when check AWD light turns on?
When this warning light turns on, park the vehicle at a safe place. You should not drive them more on uneven roads and in hilly areas.
After parking at a safe place, attach the OBD-II scanner to read the fault codes that appear on the screen. These fault codes help to indicate the actual problem in this system.
After knowing the problem take your SUV to the dealerships to repair the problem. The dealerships repair the issues free of cost for vehicles under warranty.
If it is not under warranty, you have to pay them according to the damage.
Is it safe to drive Toyota Highlander with a check AWD light on?
It is safe to drive with an AWD light on in the vehicle. The problem occurs while driving on bumpy roads and other uneven terrains because of loss of traction.
If the light is repeatedly blinking, you should park the vehicle on the side and turn off the engine. Wait for 3 to 5 minutes after turning off the engine.
Again, start the engine and check if the light stops blinking on the screen.