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How to Drain/Refill Automatic Transmission

Discussion in '2nd Gen. Tacomas (2005-2015)' started by Fortech, Dec 5, 2009.

  1. Dec 8, 2009 at 7:23 AM
    #21
    Fortech

    Fortech [OP] Well-Known Member

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    I don't know why Toyota wouldn't place a warning light in there just because the truck lacks a transfer case?

    There is mention in the Toyota Factory Service Manual that the "D" gear indicator on the cluster should light up when the system enters temp check mode, fluid comes up to proper temp, etc. Through performing the procedure however, myself and others have recognized that the "AT TEMP" indicator is the light that actually illuminates and assumed there was a typo in the Service manual.

    In light of this development (no AT TEMP light on PreRunner), maybe it was indeed a typo for the A750F (4wd) procedure, but correct for the A750E (2wd) procedure? I assumed since the mentioned light was incorrect on the 4wd procedure, it was incorrect on the 2wd procedure as well.

    Everything is still the same for the A750E (2wd) procedure except that instead of the AT TEMP light illuminating, maybe the "D" gear selector should illuminate? I guess we won't know until someone with a 2wd volunteers their time and passes the info on to us.

    As for the draining of only 1/3 to 1/2 of the total fluid - automotive engineers take this into account when they schedule the ATF maintenance plan. I personally believe that the 100K mile service is too great and have already performed two drain and fills with 94K miles on the truck - and will likely do another in the near future.

    If you be proactive with your preventative maintenance, it should be very unlikely that you would run into trouble. The service only costs me $20 for three quarts of fluid and less than 45 minutes of my time.
     
  2. Dec 9, 2009 at 9:05 PM
    #22
    news8000

    news8000 Active Member

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    Thanks for the great post on this procedure. Somewhat timely in my case.

    I just had my 96000 km service maintenance done at Sunshine Toyota in Winnipeg today and I had asked about getting full synthetic AT fluid replacement. I've already switched long ago (16,000 km) to synth engine oil and more recently the diffs and TC got the same treatment with synth replacement oils. So why not the tranny?
    Well, they hesitated to order in full synth tranny fluid for my job, and when i asked about doing a full flush including the torque fluid they just offered a list of other shops I could try to do the job. So I went with the drain and fill with Toyota stock fluid, but am curious about how to perform a full flush and fill without special Toyota machines and tools.

    I owned a 1997 4WD Previa for a time and was sucessful, after some research into the procedure, in performing a full flush for the tranny/torque fluid. It mostly involved loosening the fluid return line to the tranny pan and running the engine for short periods while collecting a litre or 2 of fluid from the disconnected line. Stopped the engine, add an equal amount of fresh fluid to the fill tube and ran it again. I stopped when I'd consumed roughly the system capacity in new fluid and the drained fluid ran clean bright red. Flush complete! Reattached return line, warmed up tranny and topped fluid to dipstick line.
    The mechanic working on my truck today said something about the return line when I asked him about this, and agreed the procedure i described would be just about the same as the one I used on the previa.
    Other than the diag check modes for temperature described above, can anyone help fill me in on any other issues involved in a DIY tranny flush for this truck? like where is the return line and if it can be reasonably easily disconnected and reconnected? etc etc.
    I want to do this for my Taco myself at next tranny service interval, or sooner. The Mobil 1 Synthetic ATF looks like it may serve me well in our bitter cold winters and for when I'm punishing the tranny in our summer heat pulling some heavy trailer load. I have an aftermarket tranny cooler installed but want to be nice to my truck. It's been really nice to me...:D

    Thanks again for the great writeup.

    N
     
  3. Dec 12, 2009 at 7:01 AM
    #23
    grivera

    grivera Well-Known Member

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    Why do you change it at such a low milage intervals?
     
  4. Dec 12, 2009 at 4:07 PM
    #24
    hate2work

    hate2work Well-Known Member

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    Because automatic trannies are expensive to repair, and sometimes you can prevent something bad from happening if you go a little overboard on your maintenance. I know someone who does an ATF drain and refill at every oil change.
     
  5. Dec 14, 2009 at 10:47 AM
    #25
    roddyrod72

    roddyrod72 Well-Known Member

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    What about the AT filter? Do Tacomas not have a tranny filter?
     
  6. Dec 14, 2009 at 2:03 PM
    #26
    DDD

    DDD Shine bright like a hymen

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    There is an Oil Strainer bolted to the bottom of the valve body. You can remove it after removing the oil pan, but I don't think it needs replacing. Its more of a metal screen to catch pieces of metal floating in the oil.
     
  7. Dec 14, 2009 at 2:15 PM
    #27
    DellGSG5

    DellGSG5 Well-Known Member

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    Great write-up thanks!
     
  8. Dec 17, 2009 at 11:18 AM
    #28
    ekelley1985

    ekelley1985 KelTek

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    i had my TSB done that the dealer along with the 4x4 service since im @ 31,000. i asked about the auto trans service and they looked at me funny. they replied "your transmission has lifetime fluid, no service is ever needed"

    i said oh really, so my tranny can go out so i have to come back and have a new one installed! they didnt like that responce and i didnt even get a laugh out of them:D
     
  9. Dec 17, 2009 at 11:40 AM
    #29
    AZCOMA

    AZCOMA where can't I go?

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    thanks great write up!!!!!!!!!!!!!
     
  10. Dec 20, 2009 at 2:23 PM
    #30
    gusotto

    gusotto gusotto

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    The AT TEMP light reminds me of a trip I made with my '89 Land Cruiser and how important that light can be.

    I needed a radiator replaced in Amarillo. While doing so I had them change out the tranny fluid as I was pulling an enclosed trailer (aluminum) with my Sportster inside.
    The tranny fluid was original and the year was 2004. 15 year old tranny fluid but only 60K on the truck.
    I had the time so they changed it.

    A little over 100 miles west of Amarillo, the AT Temp light came on. This light had never been on before except when starting!

    This "fun" ride wasn't fun anymore. The LC is very capable of towing this trailer (800 lbs) with a Sporty in it.

    Always stopped and rested the truck whenever the light came on. Eight (8) times from Amarillo to San Luis Obispo, CA.
    Fluids were always at the proper level and tranny fluid never smelled burned.
    Had to put up with this the last two days of travel.

    Got the truck checked in CA. Texas dealer had put in an aftermarket radiator so I had to get factory radiator from the CA dealer.
    He also checked the tranny fluid and replaced, just in case.

    Good for the trip home (I thought.)

    East of Barstow, the AT TEMP light came on AGAIN!
    I had the trailer shipped home from Riverside so I'd be traveling lighter.
    Problem solved.
    Not so!
    Again the AT Temp light came on.
    Had the truck checked at the dealer in Cathedral City, CA and everything checked OK. Including computer readout.

    Anyway the stupid light kept coming on the entire trip home. 8 times.

    Took to my hometown dealer and they checked with the factory.
    Found an overfill (even slight) will cause the AT TEMP light to come on!

    Filled with PROPER level and everything has been fine.

    Watch out with the level of tranny fluid I guess.
     
  11. Dec 20, 2009 at 7:06 PM
    #31
    NorthXNorthwest

    NorthXNorthwest Well-Known Member

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    Great post and writeup. One would think they would not have made it such a hassle for the AT owners!
     
  12. Dec 21, 2009 at 6:07 PM
    #32
    grivera

    grivera Well-Known Member

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    Good point, but that's more than a "little overboard" ;-)
     
  13. Dec 24, 2009 at 12:15 PM
    #33
    seavonj

    seavonj New Member

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    Hello All, I'm from northern California and live in Colfax. Greetings and Merry Christmas.

    Fortech

    I have read through your initial posts and watched the video a few times, in preparation to do my tranny, it has 107,000 and is a 2006 Tacoma Prerunner. I was a bit concerned about the supposed lack of AT TEMP light.

    Running through the procedure for the AT Temp mode I can say that the 2006 Tacoma prerunner V6 has a AT Temp light.

    I'll go through the entire procedure at some point and verify that all is good. So I'll be the guinea pig for the 2W drives.
     
  14. Dec 24, 2009 at 1:20 PM
    #34
    Fortech

    Fortech [OP] Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the clarification on the Pre Runner side of things "seavonj", looking forward to hearing all about it when you are done - as I'm sure are many other Pre Runner and 2wd members.

    Have a safe and enjoyable Christmas!:)
     
  15. Dec 25, 2009 at 12:10 PM
    #35
    jarvis210

    jarvis210 Well-Known Member

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    I am a technician at a Mercedes Benz dealer and i have performed this service on my 205 2wd trd sport truck. I was unable to get the trunk to go into temp check mode. i have tried numerous times.... I set the level by using an infered temp gauge on the cooler lines..... I performed this over 10k miles ago with no issues...... The 2wd definitly does not have the at temp light......
     
  16. Dec 26, 2009 at 2:35 PM
    #36
    seavonj

    seavonj New Member

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    The truck sat overnight so it was rather cool to begin with. I want to say the air temp this AM was around 42 degrees Fahrenheit, so a bit cool.

    I checked all of the fittings and made sure nothing was stuck or stripped.

    Drained the AT fluid, got just about 2 quarts out of the AT, nasty dark color I must add. I then added about 2.7 quarts, figured it might have been be a bit low to begin with.

    With all the fittings back in place and torqued to specs,I fired up the truck, moved the shifted between gears for a few minutes and shut it down to jump 4 and 13.

    4 and 13 jumped, I then fired up the truck and put it into AT TEMP MODE.

    1. It only took three shifts between P and N to get the AT TEMP LIGHT to come on. Not the expected 6 shifts.

    2. I let the truck warm up for 15 minutes and still nothing regarding the AT TEMP LIGHT coming on steadily. I felt the transmission pan just out of curiosity for any temp change, it was still rather cold, but the lines were beginning to get warm. PATIENCE !!!

    After 30 Minutes of warm up the AT TEMP LIGHT Flickered ON steadily. I checked the level and a stream of fluid came out, but rapidly slowed to just a trickle. I only lost about half a cup of fluid. So it was indeed a bit low all these miles.

    I just got home from driving a few miles on the freeway and all seems to be doing fine.

    Definitely think this service needs to be done a bit more often than 100,000. Possibly a 25,000 miles rejuvenation of the fluid would be a good idea.

    Regards,

    James
     
  17. Dec 26, 2009 at 2:44 PM
    #37
    gusotto

    gusotto gusotto

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    I always change the fluids after the engine has been run and warm.

    Service manual states the oil/tranny fluids should be warm (operating temperatures).

    Waste of time to drain cold fluids. Not as much gets changed as it's still in the engine or tranny.
     
  18. Dec 26, 2009 at 7:20 PM
    #38
    Fortech

    Fortech [OP] Well-Known Member

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    The procedure for the ATF drain and fill on the 2005+ Tacoma's, as per the Toyota factory Service Manual, is to service the fluid below 86 *F. This is much, much cooler than operating temps.

    Glad it worked out for you seavonj.
     
  19. Jan 4, 2010 at 1:32 PM
    #39
    303epps

    303epps Member

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    Krookz,

    Why did they suggest not changing it? Was it that they felt it wasn't DIY maintenance or was it that transmission problems may come up?

    303
     
  20. Jan 4, 2010 at 1:41 PM
    #40
    303epps

    303epps Member

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    The preparation wasn't "H" was it?
     
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