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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
When should brake fluid and transmission fluid be changed on normal driving? Can't seem to find what toyota recommends.

EDIT - I see that Toyota recommends at 60,000 miles if towing. We do not tow with the vehicle. Also, I have called around to all the local dealerships, some there are some that are saying flush it, while others are even saying it's a lifetime fluid, dont ever change it. Im getting very CONFUSED, sounds crazy to me to never change it, and im not sure i want to flush either.

Anyone else been told this?
 

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You can go to the Toyota website and download PDF versions of the Maintenance and Warranty Guide. For older vehicles, that info could be in the owners manual, not sure.
 

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You can go to the Toyota website and download PDF versions of the Maintenance and Warranty Guide. For older vehicles, that info could be in the owners manual, not sure.


The OP likely is getting their info from that doc.

Toyota never gives an interval for changing the trans fluid unless towing. On the forums, you’ll get tons of differing opinions. I prefer a flush because it uses the same process that the transmission uses: fluid going out to the cooler and back in again (the flush swaps out the fluid when it goes to the cooler and returns fresh fluid). Others do drain and fills over and over mixing old with new fluid. I tend do do mine around 100K miles for non-towing.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
The OP likely is getting their info from that doc.

Toyota never gives an interval for changing the trans fluid unless towing. On the forums, you’ll get tons of differing opinions. I prefer a flush because it uses the same process that the transmission uses: fluid going out to the cooler and back in again (the flush swaps out the fluid when it goes to the cooler and returns fresh fluid). Others do drain and fills over and over mixing old with new fluid. I tend do do mine around 100K miles for non-towing.
Thanks for your help. I have seen that doc. I think I am leaning towards this plan as well!
 

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Never, ever, ever listen to "lifetime". If you plan to sell the car/exchange it inside, say, 100,000 miles then for you the fluid is "lifetime". All fluid, every one, needs to be changed at some point. But fluid types, manufacturers, and driving styles will effect that periodicity. As to tranny fluid, somewhere around 60k-100k is a good number.

Then there there is the term "flush". Generally speaking, fluids are "flushed" with a system that introduces some pressure to move the fluid through, looking to clean and break up crud and remove it. When you have older systems or unknown service histories a flush that uses this kind of pressure can be damaging. Some dealers and shops won't do it because you may get a leak and then they have to fix it. You don't need to "flush" the fluid, just change it. Drain the old, put in new is the easiest way to do this, what some people may call a home flush or something similar.

For brakes you can do this by bleeding the system out the bleeder valves, replenishing the fluid as it gets low. For trans you can A) drain and fill the pan (if you go this route, then you want to do it a few times to get all the old fluid out), or B) drain the pan, refill it, and run the return line into a bottle and replenish with new until you get all new fresh fluid. The latter (B) worries some as if you have an old system with worn seals or crap in the valves and channels, putting all new fluid in all at once can result in slipping. At least, that is what some report. Anything can happen given the number of vehicles out there.

Here is the guarantee: you keep the car long enough, it will fail if the fluid does not get changed. 100k, 200k, 400k...?? no magic number. I am ready to drain out and replace the fluid in my 4 Runner as it is about to hit 130k.
 

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As I see it the manufacturer interval is to maintain warranty, I do my fluids every 60-80k to maintain my vehicle...........what I do is the "flush" as it is called but really just a fluid exchange. So all the ATF is pushed out while all the new ATF is pushed in. I avoid the chemical cleaner and additives as I see no benefit. Same for coolant, 2 gallon fluid exchange every 60k.
ect........
 
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