94 V6 transmission slipping - Toyota Nation Forum : Toyota Car and Truck Forums

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post #1 of 242 Old 01-25-2017, 07:57 PM Thread Starter
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94 V6 transmission slipping

Hi folks. Have a Camry 94 V6 with obvious tranny slipping issues. Not terrible at this point and still driveable...slips slightly taking off from idle but then is smooth after gaining rpm's. Is there an external band adjustment for this transmission? And if so is there a writeup procedure on here somewhere for it? Hope it's not toast....the car runs perfectly otherwise and only has 119K miles on it. Body is in great shape, no rust to speak of. It's my son's first car. It was very low on fluid (don't know why yet...have to check further this weekend) and was slipping really badly and not driveable. I filled it with fluid and some Lucas stop-slip and now driveable but still slipping slightly as described above. Plan to drain it and replace trans filter and fluid this weekend but I'm guessing that won't make much difference. Thanks for any help

Last edited by markdunn99; 01-25-2017 at 08:00 PM.
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post #2 of 242 Old 01-25-2017, 08:07 PM
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Check the trans fluid again. In my experience, it'll check low a few times, needing a top-off until it's right. Seems like they burp air for a while when they're run low, or after a drain/refill.
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post #3 of 242 Old 01-25-2017, 08:17 PM
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Originally Posted by markdunn99 View Post
Hi folks. Have a Camry 94 V6 with obvious tranny slipping issues. Not terrible at this point and still driveable...slips slightly taking off from idle but then is smooth after gaining rpm's. Is there an external band adjustment for this transmission? And if so is there a writeup procedure on here somewhere for it? Hope it's not toast....the car runs perfectly otherwise and only has 119K miles on it. Body is in great shape, no rust to speak of. It's my son's first car. It was very low on fluid (don't know why yet...have to check further this weekend) and was slipping really badly and not driveable. I filled it with fluid and some Lucas stop-slip and now driveable but still slipping slightly as described above. Plan to drain it and replace trans filter and fluid this weekend but I'm guessing that won't make much difference. Thanks for any help
Replace trans filter and gasket, use a good one. I've had good luck with Beck/Arnley (044-0280, $17 on RockAuto) and Wix (58614, $13 on RA). Drain and refill twice or three times with a good fluid, I recommend Valvoline MaxLife or Dex III. I've used Dex VI in several of these and it works great, but introduces momentary slippage sometimes that may worry some people (shifts and works fine, though).

I saw this recently in a '96 V6 granny car (35k miles). I'm guessing this is due to the car not being driven enough over its lifetime. The MaxLife has more seal conditioners than other fluids and this might help with issues caused by seal degradation. HTH
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post #4 of 242 Old 01-25-2017, 08:42 PM Thread Starter
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Replace trans filter and gasket, use a good one. I've had good luck with Beck/Arnley (044-0280, $17 on RockAuto) and Wix (58614, $13 on RA). Drain and refill twice or three times with a good fluid, I recommend Valvoline MaxLife or Dex III. I've used Dex VI in several of these and it works great, but introduces momentary slippage sometimes that may worry some people (shifts and works fine, though).

I saw this recently in a '96 V6 granny car (35k miles). I'm guessing this is due to the car not being driven enough over its lifetime. The MaxLife has more seal conditioners than other fluids and this might help with issues caused by seal degradation. HTH
Hi...thanks. I plan to replace the filter, drain and refill it this weekend. But...do you know if there is a band adjustment and if so is there a procedure on here that shows how to do it? Is it difficult to do? Or...is there no external adjustment at all? Thanks again
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post #5 of 242 Old 01-25-2017, 08:51 PM
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Originally Posted by markdunn99 View Post
Hi...thanks. I plan to replace the filter, drain and refill it this weekend. But...do you know if there is a band adjustment and if so is there a procedure on here that shows how to do it? Is it difficult to do? Or...is there no external adjustment at all? Thanks again
I just looked through everything I have (ALLDATA) for your trans and there doesn't seem to be any. I suppose if you really wanted to check you could buy an ATSG manual or equivalent.

I have a Ford 4F50N open across my garage floor. It has bands but there are no adjustments without opening the whole thing up...the bands are separated because the PO tried some harsh solvent in an effort to relieve its shifting problems (what the hell). I have not seen any modern AT needing band adjustments...last time I had to do it was on a TorqueFlite A727 on a Super Stock Coronet. HTH

EDIT: See attached pic of the guts. Only one band. Who gave you the idea to adjust bands to solve your slipping issue?

EDIT 2: After doing a bit more research, that band should only affect your 2-3 shift, will not cause any slipping from idle as you mentioned. Also I'm skeptical of a band problem with only 119k miles.
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post #6 of 242 Old 01-26-2017, 04:30 AM
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Look on the transmission dip stick. It will tell you what specific type of transmission fluid to use. If it says to use the T-IV type fluid, use that only. T-IV is not the same as ordinary transmission fluid ... different friction coefficient or something.
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post #7 of 242 Old 01-26-2017, 09:59 AM
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As mention, before going doing anything, check the transmission fluid. How is it? Red? Pink? Brown? Black? Black with metal specks?


Dropping the pan will give you a very good ideal on the transmission condition. If you see black sludge around the magnets in the transmission pan, just take em off and clean them. If it looks like a Christmas tree with metal particle, you got more issues...

Prolong as the car isn't being driven roughly while the transmission is slipping (i.e. revving until it slowly 'locks' into gear), I'd say do a few fluid drain and refills. I've used Supertech ATF fluid (it's marked as Dextron III compatible) a few times for the drain and refill then when it starts to look good, fill it up with MaxLife ATF. I've 'revived' my friends transmission in her 1995 V6 w/ 320K twice as it started to do a slow slip in drive.

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post #8 of 242 Old 01-26-2017, 07:53 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by insightbrewery View Post
I just looked through everything I have (ALLDATA) for your trans and there doesn't seem to be any. I suppose if you really wanted to check you could buy an ATSG manual or equivalent.

I have a Ford 4F50N open across my garage floor. It has bands but there are no adjustments without opening the whole thing up...the bands are separated because the PO tried some harsh solvent in an effort to relieve its shifting problems (what the hell). I have not seen any modern AT needing band adjustments...last time I had to do it was on a TorqueFlite A727 on a Super Stock Coronet. HTH

EDIT: See attached pic of the guts. Only one band. Who gave you the idea to adjust bands to solve your slipping issue?

EDIT 2: After doing a bit more research, that band should only affect your 2-3 shift, will not cause any slipping from idle as you mentioned. Also I'm skeptical of a band problem with only 119k miles.
Thanks again. Nobody gave me the idea of adjusting bands...I'm just inquiring if that could possibly help with the problem. I've done a lot of work on engines but not real familiar with transmission issues in great detail. Sounds like you've answered my question though since this car is only slipping upon initial takeoff from idle...after that it is smooth. True only 119K miles but....a 22 year old car which my son has only had for maybe 2 years so who knows how it was treated previously. I had changed the fluid and filter when he first got it and he's only put probably 10K miles on it.
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post #9 of 242 Old 01-26-2017, 08:02 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Kingdom934 View Post
As mention, before going doing anything, check the transmission fluid. How is it? Red? Pink? Brown? Black? Black with metal specks?


Dropping the pan will give you a very good ideal on the transmission condition. If you see black sludge around the magnets in the transmission pan, just take em off and clean them. If it looks like a Christmas tree with metal particle, you got more issues...

Prolong as the car isn't being driven roughly while the transmission is slipping (i.e. revving until it slowly 'locks' into gear), I'd say do a few fluid drain and refills. I've used Supertech ATF fluid (it's marked as Dextron III compatible) a few times for the drain and refill then when it starts to look good, fill it up with MaxLife ATF. I've 'revived' my friends transmission in her 1995 V6 w/ 320K twice as it started to do a slow slip in drive.
Thanks. As I mentioned....the car was very low on fluid so there was nothing to check! At that point it would not even engage at all in drive. I filled with fluid and Lucas stop-slip and now it drives but is still slipping slightly upon initial takeoff from idle. I am going to drop the pan Saturday to replace filter and refill so I'll see if anything obvious shows up there. I don't know why it was low/empty as I don't see any obvious leaks but I'll have to check that as well when I work on it Saturday. The Valvoline Maxlife ATF is actually what I put in it yesterday. But...I haven't drained and refilled it a couple of times, so again I'll do that Saturday. I hope it helps...feel bad for my son since this car is in such great shape otherwise and has served him well. Hasn't cost him a dime other than normal maintenance and it runs great otherwise. I actually wouldn't mind tackling a tranny replacement but....you never know what you're getting with a used transmission which might very well have more miles on it than this one and who knows how long it would last. Have to weigh that against the cost plus my labor/time to do the job and how much more life would he get out of it? It's a risky proposition. Thank you for the advice again.
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post #10 of 242 Old 01-26-2017, 09:02 PM
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Originally Posted by markdunn99 View Post
Thanks. As I mentioned....the car was very low on fluid so there was nothing to check! At that point it would not even engage at all in drive. I filled with fluid and Lucas stop-slip and now it drives but is still slipping slightly upon initial takeoff from idle. I am going to drop the pan Saturday to replace filter and refill so I'll see if anything obvious shows up there. I don't know why it was low/empty as I don't see any obvious leaks but I'll have to check that as well when I work on it Saturday. The Valvoline Maxlife ATF is actually what I put in it yesterday. But...I haven't drained and refilled it a couple of times, so again I'll do that Saturday. I hope it helps...feel bad for my son since this car is in such great shape otherwise and has served him well. Hasn't cost him a dime other than normal maintenance and it runs great otherwise. I actually wouldn't mind tackling a tranny replacement but....you never know what you're getting with a used transmission which might very well have more miles on it than this one and who knows how long it would last. Have to weigh that against the cost plus my labor/time to do the job and how much more life would he get out of it? It's a risky proposition. Thank you for the advice again.
After each drain and fill, drive around for ten minutes. I'd do it two or three times until the fluid coming out looks new. Transmission snot just replenishes friction modifiers, so it won't have much of an effect on new trans fluid. I like Lubegard Red
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post #11 of 242 Old 01-27-2017, 08:24 AM
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I also will log in as doubting the transmission is worn out with only 119,000 miles.

I'm always interested in transmission questions here. I'm trying to urge my transmission to keep hanging in there so it may last as long or longer than my engine.

Please post your ultimate problem resolution so we may be able to apply that to our situations later!

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post #12 of 242 Old 01-27-2017, 01:29 PM Thread Starter
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I also will log in as doubting the transmission is worn out with only 119,000 miles.

I'm always interested in transmission questions here. I'm trying to urge my transmission to keep hanging in there so it may last as long or longer than my engine.

Please post your ultimate problem resolution so we may be able to apply that to our situations later!

I will write back after I work on it tomorrow. But....the only recourse I have at this point is to drain/refill and change the filter. If that doesn't work then I'm out of luck and gotta think about what to do with the car. Not sure why folks are doubtful the tranny could be trash after 119K? It's not only the mileage but the age of the car as well...22 years old is a lot of abuse on it, and who knows how it was driven or cared for before I got it. I mean....something is causing the slipping obviously, and I've already filled it with fluid, so I don't really see how simply draining it and refilling again would make a difference? I could see if a car is slipping ONLY because the fluid is low....but then once it is filled again it should be fine. In this case it's still slipping so...logically thinking....draining and refilling the fluid can't fix worn clutch plates, right?? Or...I don't know? What else can cause slipping? Faulty solenoid? But are those replaceable without dropping the tranny?
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post #13 of 242 Old 01-27-2017, 03:31 PM
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Back when I had a Crapillac, I used to frequent a Caddy board. A lot of people claimed good results with slipping and shifting issues by using Lucas Transmission Fix.
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post #14 of 242 Old 01-27-2017, 03:39 PM
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I will write back after I work on it tomorrow. But....the only recourse I have at this point is to drain/refill and change the filter. If that doesn't work then I'm out of luck and gotta think about what to do with the car. Not sure why folks are doubtful the tranny could be trash after 119K? It's not only the mileage but the age of the car as well...22 years old is a lot of abuse on it, and who knows how it was driven or cared for before I got it. I mean....something is causing the slipping obviously, and I've already filled it with fluid, so I don't really see how simply draining it and refilling again would make a difference? I could see if a car is slipping ONLY because the fluid is low....but then once it is filled again it should be fine. In this case it's still slipping so...logically thinking....draining and refilling the fluid can't fix worn clutch plates, right?? Or...I don't know? What else can cause slipping? Faulty solenoid? But are those replaceable without dropping the tranny?
Yeah, you can test the solenoids. IIRC you have to drop the pan, then unbolt the valve body to get to them.
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post #15 of 242 Old 01-27-2017, 04:23 PM
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MarkDunn...maybe some of us are overly optimistic but my optimism comes from seeing lots of folks here who are still on their first transmission with REALLY high miles. Certainly the type of driving matters a lot, as does the total age, but I'm driving a 2000 V6 with 422,000 miles on the original tranny. The fluid has been changed twice so that's decent and both I and the original owner were adults so that helps too but it would seem like it would take some heavy driving to wear out the same transmission in just over 100K miles. It COULD be that there was a big difference in the 1994 vs. 2000 transmission but....that's ultimately where my optimism comes from. I wonder if the friction plates dried out from being low on fluid and sitting up for a while? Might rejuvenate after some use with full fluid. I have never worked on a transmission so my thoughts are just that...thoughts :>)

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