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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Transmission fluid change TCH

ok, nice and sunny day. had CVT WS TF changed today.

OK, because of PhtoBucket greed, I am posting link to slideshow. So far, slideshows appear to be working. You'll have to match text to pics.

http://s302.photobucket.com/user/ukrkoz/slideshow/TF change Camry

about only one word of caution:
open fill plug first. otherwise, fluid gushes out of drain plug in very uneven manner, spilling all over the place, if you do not allow air in through fill plug hole.:facepalm:.

also, when you pop those plugs open, transmission sucks a lot of air in, and it's quite scary sound.:naughty:

1. tools needed: 10mm hex head wrench. you can use socket wrench socket with it, or what i used - L shaped one; drain pan; either oil pump or long tubing with funnel that will fit in; 12mm crush washer x 2; rags and all that good stuff for cleaning. pretty basic.:thumbsup:2. jack car securily; level position is preferred:

for barrel chested folks - there is very little clearance down there; my hydraulic jack basically ran out of height and i still could barely fit under. there was no way to turn or even to put 2 arms underneath, to hold something

3. here's suggested set - aluminum splash pan, good drain pan, oil pump, and gloves


4. here's WS (world standard) Toyota fluid; $7.42 each, total of four needed. i, also, came up with a funnel with long tubing slid over funnel and taped in place securily


5. for jobs like this, i normally use "willie the creeper" dolly, but there was no way to use it, so old rag worked fine:

6. drain anf fill plugs are located on the driver side of powertrain, right next to catalytic converter:



those are the ones with hex holes in them, lower being drain and upper/left being fill plugs.

7. takes a lot of torque to break them loose; i used box end wrench over the long hex wrench end to create leverage; cheat pipe suitable length will work; plugs pop with loud noise - don't worry, you did not break anything; once popped, after another half turn, they can be removed with fingers:


8. i can not tell if fluid came out bad; it looked slightly darker than fresh one, but did no smell very bad or had much impurities in it:


9. secure drain plug back in place; you may want to put new 12mm crush washer on it; i have very good experience with reusing original washers maybe once, so that's what i did. copper washers are the best, they do not crack like aluminum or plastic ones.

10. now it's time to refill; i ran tubing from the top down and deep into the transmission; it went in good couple inches easy; i secured funnel to the bonnet lifter and RE-CHECKED IF IT DID NOT SLIDE OUT OF TRANSMISSION!!!

11. i poured fluid in very slowly; reason being, it's thick and can easily block tubing, air gushes out, splashes all over; also, size of my tubing almost completely plugged the fill hole, so i wanted to allow air out to avoid emboli. took only about 3 minutes for 4 cans.

12. allow extra time for most of the fluid to drain down the tubing. all 4 qrts fit in, there was only minor drippage. clean everything, reinstall fill plug, torque.

13 while you there, might be a good idea to change oil. so i did.
here's oil drain plug and filter location:

also, i had cat covered with rag while filling, so that fluid does not get into it's mesh:

overall time about an hour. messiness level, with my Silverado transmission pan removal being the messiest job i have ever done, having me all covered in ATF, and graded 10 out of ten, i'd give this one maybe 3. quite simple, just a lot of dancing around with prep work.

yes, it did start and drive thereafter. so far, i can not tell any difference. but i did not drive her much anyway.

Not my car but this is what 2007 TCH fluid may look like at 120 000 miles:

 

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I did this this when I first bought the car (used). I was surprised when I heard the suction sound too? It is one of the easiest trans. fluid changes I have ever done. It is more like changing the oil in a diff. than a trans.

I was surprised how dirty the fluid was. It was brown but smelled ok. My reason for changing was reading up on it over at the Prius forum. It seems the the first batch of fluid carries a heavy metallic load and the changes after the first change show much better results in lab tests.

The bottom line is that it is so easy to change. There is no reason not to do it. I even hear the dealer charges a reasonable rate to change it for you.

I'm glad someone posted pics of the procedure. This will make some people happy. I looked high and low and could not find much info. on it. I wound up pumping the fluid into the trans. from below with a "outboard lower unit oil pump". I like the "funnel from above" method better!


Edit: The next time you drop the pan on the Chevy, go to your local auto parts store and pick up a "drain plug kit" for the pan. It makes the job much easier and a heck of a lot cleaner.
 

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All finished! I wish I had remembered the tip about holding the plug against the hole while draining. It gushed out and made a huge mess. I saved about 2 quarts in a sterile container to have it analyzed by Blackstone labs (For minerals content, impurities, etc). A bunch of guys at prius chat did this and it's only 25 bucks. I'll post the results once I get them :)

NOTES:
* I have about 56,000 miles on the car, highway miles mainly, temperate New England climate.
* Fluid came out like Urkoz described, dark red but no crud or bad smell.
* Urkoz's instructions were flawless. Everything went as he said it would.
* Engine was cool, but not cold. I got a mild hissing noise as I loosened the top bolt.
* I used a hand pump to get the fluid in from below. I do NOT recommend this unless you have to. It was very tiring and made a pretty decent mess. :/



@urkoz: No oil change today. I got that handled last week. This car only sees 0w20 mobil one.
 

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For my first work commute on the new transaxle fluid, my report is as follows:
* No noticeable difference in MPG.
* No noticeable difference in ICE start/stop smoothness.
* The "whine" from the MGs seem to be noticeably quieter than before. I am very aware of the "placebo effect" and was very hesitant to come to this conclusion, but it does seem right. I will give it a few more days in case other factors may be at work. My guess is that the significantly increased viscosity of the fluid compared to old (according to fluid analysis by priuschat folks) allows the fluid to stay on the MGs longer, muffling some of the noise. When I get my own fluid analysis results back, I will know more.


PS: I just responded the the speedo discussion in the original thread.
 

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Hi ukrkoz...thx for your post... but I can't see any filling hole from above? Could you tell me where's the hole "hiding"?
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Hi ukrkoz...thx for your post... but I can't see any filling hole from above? Could you tell me where's the hole "hiding"?
you can but you really need to know where it's at. it does not have formal bolt head, it's simple sqr head plug, same metal as casing, so it's hard to notice.
you'd be better off peeking from underneath to get good grip on where it's at.
also, you have to pop filler plug 1st anyway. when you pop it open, it's dark hole in casing, so it's easier to see.

BUT WHY? you not gonna do this job hanging down over the fender, have my word on it. you have to have her up on lift or 4 jackstands, level.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
This is great! So on the Amsoil thing.... where do you get it and what kind of filter do you use?

What weight also? 5w-30 or 10w30 or what?

I just got a 2006 Highlander Hybrid. Do think this will be the same?

Changing inverter fluid - is that a dealer only thing or what?

Very helpful. Thanks.
that's write up on inverter fluid change at green hybrid. it's quite complex.
you buy Amsoil - for engine - on internet, in 4 qt jars, or in gallons.
I buy mine at local Chevron station.
5W20 is recommended, with 0W20 suggested for "best mileage" but it drops mpg on mine, so I go on 5W20, or 5W30, what's available.
you have 10 000 and 25 000 miles Amsoil. 25K is called signature series. It's expensive, they just jagged price again, and you must change oil filter midway, to run it to that mark. as low as filter is set in TCH, I do not think it's possible. unless you relocate filter up higher.
if you have 4WD Highlander, you want to right away change rear diff, front diff, and transfer case fluids to Amsoil oils. Mof, I think, at least 2 of those run on Toyota ATF, then you can use Amsoil ATF and just forget about it for the rest of the time you own the car. :thumbsup:
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Edr

just so that you know:

EDR (EVENT DATA RECORDER)
The airbag sensor assembly monitors and control certain aspects of the vehicle. These computers assist in driving and maintaining optimal vehicle performance. Besides storing data useful for troubleshooting, there is a system to record data in a crash or a near car crash event. This is called the Event Data Recorder (EDR). The airbag sensor assembly contains the EDR. In a crash or a near car crash event, this device may record some or all of the following information:
Engine speed
Whether the brake pedal was applied or not
Vehicle speed
To what extent the accelerator pedal was depressed
Position of the transmission selector lever
Whether the driver and front passenger wore seat belts or not
Driver’s seat position SRS airbag deployment data
SRS airbag system diagnostic data
The information above is intended to be used for the purpose of improving vehicle safety performance. Unlike general data recorders, the EDR does not record sound data such as conversation between passengers.
Toyota will not disclose the data recorded in an EDR to a third party except when:
An agreement from the vehicle’s owner (or the leasing company for a leased vehicle) is obtained
Officially requested by the police or other authorities Used as a defense for Toyota in a law suit Ordered by the court
However, if necessary Toyota will: Use the data for research on Toyota vehicle safety performance
Disclose the data to a third party for research purposes without disclosing details of the vehicle owner, and only when it is deemed necessary
Disclose summarized data cleared of vehicle identification information to a non-Toyota organization for research purposes


So, my question is - when exactly do they collect those "research data"? Every time you go to a dealership?

:welcome:
 

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So, my question is - when exactly do they collect those "research data"? Every time you go to a dealership?
The short answer is no. They collect the data every time you smash your car up to the point where the air bags deploy, and then Toyota gets their hands on it.

The reason is data storage. Like aircraft event recorders they have limited memory and the data is constantly being written over old data. The time interval between recording events can be very very short, milliseconds, so data is being recorded at a high rate. So, they may only record the last few minutes before air bag deployment. The deployment then freezes the data so they can determine what happened in the few minutes before the air bag went off.

There is no doubt about what this is used for. They want it to defend themselves against ambulance chasing lawyers. These same lawyers have been trying very hard to make use of this data illegal. Why? Because what the data says may just happen to differ slightly from the verbal account of the client. "No, your honor, I was only going 30 mph, and I put my foot on the brake as soon as I saw..." Event Recorder: "speed 60 mph, foot taken off accelerator 0.5 seconds before air bag deployment, brake pedal never touched..."

Have not followed it closely but I think the ambulance chasers have lost this one, and Toyota, and Police can get the data, and use it in court. You are right. It is something to be aware of before you go to court.
 

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A local private garage has agreed to change the ATF fluid for a very nominal amount since it's a "drain and fill". Now my question is, should I still take a new funnel/extension or can I trust that the one they use at the garage wouldn't have some contaminants from pas use?

Also, ukrkoz, I see you also had a pennzoil pump handy, but opted for the funnel. Wouldn't a pump have been easier, since you could do it all while being underneath the car?

Thanks.
 

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I don't really think that is a good site to get unbias information about oil filters. They are just promoting their own "special" oil filter. Purolator does not make oil filters for Toyota, Denso does. Denso is a quality Japanese company that make many parts for Toyota. From the information I have seen the Toyota Denso oil filter is a better filter than the much more expensive Purolator filter for the Toyota Camry.
 

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Sorry Ron, I was trying to provide some history of oil used in the early engines, first use of a oil pump and the Pure-O-Later guys inventing the first oil filter.

I know how some rating sites are biased to their own being the best.

I'm with you on the Toyota/Denso quality as being the very best you can get. The TCH starting with the '07 model, all it's hybrid parts are made my Denso. This includes MG1, MG2, the inverter and the AC compressor. I'm sure they are lots of other Denso parts. I saw the TCH is rated in consumer reports to give less trouble than the standard gas powered Camry. The Denso parts in the TCH may be the reason.

I should have specified the '07 TCH using a modified purolator oil filter by toyota. I used to buy the purolator standard filter and their better pure one filter. I also had some toyota oem filters to compare with.

The standard housing top and seems matched the oem perfectly. The oem filter used the same better filter element as was in the more expensive pure one filter. Denso may made all their filters other than I know what I saw with the '07 oil filters I had then and used for 5 years till I bought the new '12 model.

If that '07 filter was a Denso it sure matched the purolator filter exactly, including the pure one filter element.
 

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Out of 33 oil changes I've done on a Scion tC only five were done with K&N. The rest of them were Toyota OEM "F1" filters....

236,xxx miles later (and more likely if I didn't trade it in) The Camry is getting OEM filters as well. Those results I personally seen are good enough to keep on buying.
 

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if you need to find OEM replacement parts with part numbers so you can google it to find the best price for the part number, check out midatlantictoyotaparts.com . Several other Toyota replacement parts websites will get you the right part, but won't give you the part number. W/ the part number you can google it and find the best price for it.
 
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