2012 Toyota 3.5L oil question

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Jun 5, 2003
McGregor TX
I have an extended warranty on my 2012 Toyota Highlander with a 3.5L V6. The warranty runs until 100K miles. I'm using 0W20 and have used that weight since I got it. I have a few more OCIs before my warranty runs out and have enough 0W20 stashed to get well past 100K miles on my existing supply of oil. I'm just wondering about down the road if it would be suitable to run it on 5W30 synthetic like I use for my other vehicles. I'm assuming it would since this engine USED to be spec'd for 5W30. Essentially, I'm just curious if anyone has switched from 0W20 to 5W30 on this specific engine and if they are happy with their decision. I don't have a problem using 0W20, but using the same weight across the board would be nice. I'm also wondering if using a thicker oil as the engine ages would be beneficial.

I am no authority on this subject as I don't know this specific engine, but it it was rated for 5W30, then the "upgrade" to 0W20 is likely to achieve slightly better MPGs to lower Toyota's CAFE.

Kinda like the old Ford 3.0 Vulcan which started at 5W30 then "upgraded" to 5W20 along the way with no design change. Since both my oil cap and the manual call for 5W20, that's what I use, even though it's the only one in my fleet to use this grade.

If everything is fine for you with 0W20 and that 's what Toyota specifies, I'd play it safe and keep using this grade.
A thread was started recently about the 2GR-FE (Toyota 3.5L you have) and which oil to use. If you can find it (I cant't) it started off pretty good. From the little bit that I can remember, the engine is not picky about oil. I have used from 0w-20 to 5w-30 in them so far. Maybe another member is better at linking it for us because I was curious about it also.
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Thanks. I have a hard time with the search on this site, but I'll give it a go. Sometimes using Google to search the site works better than the site's search function.
Is the engine burning or leaking oil? If not, why not just stick with the 0w-20? A typical reason to go thicker would be worn rings but I doubt you have that issue.
You always stay on the designated oil until after your warranty. Not that they'll help you but at least they may help you if you have a decent dealer that will go to bat for you.
Yeah, I'm sticking with the 0W20 until the warranty is over. And my car doesn't use/burn oil or have any issues that I'm aware of. It is more of a convenience thing to have the same weight across all 4 cars I maintain, but it is certainly not that big of a deal. Honestly, I just wonder if a thicker oil would be better as the engine ages. Maybe not. I suspect it wouldn't make much of a difference either way.
I bought the 2017 Sonata in my signature in July. Oil cap calls for 0w20, I've done two changes on it so far and both times used M1 AFE 0w30. With the fuel dilution from the GDI it'll thin out so I don't see the problem. Plus, the owners manual even says that you can use 5w30 but that 0w20 will provide better MPG. So I can't see a warranty dispute happening over this if I ever had a problem. Running a 20 weight with the GDI makes me a nervous of what'll thin out to before it's changed.
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