TN Post Wh*re
Join Date: Jun 2006
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Regardless of what you do, changing the fluid more frequently then recommended will prolong trans life! The hotter the trans fluid gets, the more rapidly it ages and darkens. What type of driving does your daughter do, lots of stop and go, traffic jams, pulling a trailer, etc? Adding an oil cooler will keep the fluid temp lower and prolong its life.
On these long life fluids, the dealer may have a color chart. The dealer will compare the fluid color to the chart and determine if it needs changing. Is the fluid black or reddish black! Does it smell burned! A Goggle search may turn up this color chart.
Just draining and filling the trans will only get out about 2/3rds of the fluid, the rest remains in the torque converter. A power flush will remove all the fluid. It is also possible to remove an oil line from the trans oil cooler and let the trans pump drain all the oil out. This requires some finess.
The dealer should know exactly how much fluid trans holds by looking in the service manual. An Avalon or Camry will hold a max of say 5-6 qrts depending on transmission type, as such 8-16 qrts seems a lot of fluid for this size car. Don’t use any fluid in the trans other then what is stated in the owner’s manual or stamped on the dipstick.
If you do your own servicing, drain and refill the trans again. When it comes to transmission life, changing the trans fluid more often is better! If you get bored, a search of the TN history search will turn up a lot of discussion on the subjects of long life trans fluid, flushing the trans, fluid color and odor, etc, etc.