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Ugly atf #4682212
03/02/18 11:36 AM
03/02/18 11:36 AM
Joined: Oct 2009
Posts: 388
California
Billbert Offline OP
Billbert  Offline OP
Joined: Oct 2009
Posts: 388
California
Recently purchased a 2007 Rav4 limited 4 wd. 175,000 on the clock. Dropped the pan and changed the filter, trans fluid looked like black motor oil. I used maxlife, the trans shifted OK before the change, but much smoother after. Gonna do a couple of drain and refills in the next weeks, but the weather here isn't cooperating right now (it's snowing) & I don't have a garage so guess I'll wait a couple of weeks.

Last edited by Billbert; 03/02/18 11:38 AM. Reason: Spelling

If you think you can, or if you think you can't, You are probably right.

Auto Instructor / ASE Master Tech
Re: Ugly atf [Re: Billbert] #4682222
03/02/18 11:51 AM
03/02/18 11:51 AM
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 3,275
Oshawa, Ontario Canada
JC1 Offline
JC1  Offline
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 3,275
Oshawa, Ontario Canada
Did you take any pictures....


2015 Grand Caravan SXT Plus 5w-20 PPPP/Fram Ultra Filter
1997 Honda Civic CX 5w-30 Shell Conventional/Fram Ultra Filter
Re: Ugly atf [Re: Billbert] #4682224
03/02/18 11:52 AM
03/02/18 11:52 AM
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 12,761
NH
supton Offline
supton  Offline
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 12,761
NH
I've heard that a few times about Toyota's transmissions. They smooth out with fresher fluid.

Did you do a full exchange, or just a pan drop? If it really looks nasty, then I'd do whatever it takes to do the full flush, by pulling a cooler line. Drain the pan, refill, pull the line, and let the engine do the work for you. Almost easier to do when the ATF is at its worst: you can tell when it's done flushing, as you can go by color.


2011 Toyota Camry, base, 2.5L/6MT, 170k, hers
2010 Toyota Tundra DC, 4.6L/6AT, 144k, ours
1999 Toyota Camry LE, 2.2L/4AT, 195k, his
Re: Ugly atf [Re: Billbert] #4682231
03/02/18 11:56 AM
03/02/18 11:56 AM
Joined: Dec 2013
Posts: 2,098
socal
barkingspider Offline
barkingspider  Offline
Joined: Dec 2013
Posts: 2,098
socal
Drain and fills will do your Toyota good especially if it has a drain plug. Thatís what been done my since I bought my daughterís Camry.


06 Cadillac Escalade Ext
17 Cadillac ATS (wife)
05 Toyota Camry (daughter)
11 GMC Canyon off-road (daily)
Re: Ugly atf [Re: Billbert] #4682267
03/02/18 12:31 PM
03/02/18 12:31 PM
Joined: Mar 2014
Posts: 3,472
NJ
Leo99 Online content
Leo99  Online Content
Joined: Mar 2014
Posts: 3,472
NJ
If you think your ATF was ugly after 175k miles, you should see the ATF in my Rav4 after 350k miles.


Without data you're just another person with an opinion. W. E. Deming

2003 Corolla 250,000 miles (RIP)
2004 Corolla 125,000 miles
2004 Rav4 370,000 miles
2015 Camry 70,000 miles
Re: Ugly atf [Re: Billbert] #4682284
03/02/18 12:47 PM
03/02/18 12:47 PM
Joined: Jan 2011
Posts: 634
Anaheim, CA
zorobabel Offline
zorobabel  Offline
Joined: Jan 2011
Posts: 634
Anaheim, CA
A friend's 2007 Corolla had black ATF at 70k. Toyota T-IV gets dark rather fast.


1997 Maxima 190k, QSGB 5w30+QSUD 5w30 (2:1), PL14477
2004 Corolla 193k, VWB 5w20 + SSS 10w40, MGL4967
Re: Ugly atf [Re: Billbert] #4682313
03/02/18 01:21 PM
03/02/18 01:21 PM
Joined: Dec 2017
Posts: 2,969
SE British Columbia, Canada
Snagglefoot Offline
Snagglefoot  Offline
Joined: Dec 2017
Posts: 2,969
SE British Columbia, Canada
Where do you experts like to disconnect the line to do a fluid replacement. Where it feeds to the trans cooler or where it comes back to the rad. Or other? Thanks.


If you want the job done right......do it yourself.
Re: Ugly atf [Re: Billbert] #4682400
03/02/18 02:40 PM
03/02/18 02:40 PM
Joined: Jun 2015
Posts: 4,404
New England
Virtus_Probi Offline
Virtus_Probi  Offline
Joined: Jun 2015
Posts: 4,404
New England
I had an '06 "RAV6" AWD and Toyota had decided that the ATF was a lifetime fluid.
Had an indy Toyota shop look at it around 60kmiles and it was quite black, they told me they had purchased a special fluid extractor for the new trannies since the maker decided it should be difficult to change the ATF.
I had an expensive repair to the AWD drive system before 100k that also gave me new fluid, think I had it changed once more before I traded it in on my FXT around 160k.
That was definitely the most fun vehicle all around I have owned, enjoy!


2014 Forester XT, 90000 miles
Last Change;
M1 5W30 d1G2
Tokyo Roki 15208AA170 filter
Re: Ugly atf [Re: Billbert] #4682534
03/02/18 05:18 PM
03/02/18 05:18 PM
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 21,094
Upstate NY
Donald Offline
Donald  Offline
Joined: Mar 2004
Posts: 21,094
Upstate NY
It's when the ATF looks like driveway sealer that you have problems.


2015 Subaru Forester 2.5 engine/CVT
2015 Ford F250 w/Powerstroke
2016 Subaru Crosstrek CVT (wife's)
Re: Ugly atf [Re: Billbert] #4682544
03/02/18 05:26 PM
03/02/18 05:26 PM
Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 7,309
USA
slacktide_bitog Online content
slacktide_bitog  Online Content
Joined: Mar 2008
Posts: 7,309
USA
Doesn't your car have a drain plug for the transmission? smile

Re: Ugly atf [Re: Snagglefoot] #4682638
03/02/18 07:10 PM
03/02/18 07:10 PM
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 12,761
NH
supton Offline
supton  Offline
Joined: Nov 2008
Posts: 12,761
NH
Originally Posted By: Snagglefoot
Where do you experts like to disconnect the line to do a fluid replacement. Where it feeds to the trans cooler or where it comes back to the rad. Or other? Thanks.


IIRC you want the line going into the cooler. Not the line coming off the cooler. Reason being, line going into cooler will have ATF coming out of it--so pull that and put into drain container of choice.

You could remove the one on the cooler outlet, but then you (may) need an additional hose.


2011 Toyota Camry, base, 2.5L/6MT, 170k, hers
2010 Toyota Tundra DC, 4.6L/6AT, 144k, ours
1999 Toyota Camry LE, 2.2L/4AT, 195k, his
Re: Ugly atf [Re: Donald] #4682794
03/02/18 09:52 PM
03/02/18 09:52 PM
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 10,597
Nokesville, VA
brianl703 Offline
brianl703  Offline
Joined: May 2004
Posts: 10,597
Nokesville, VA
Originally Posted By: Donald
It's when the ATF looks like driveway sealer that you have problems.


Or when it smells so bad you want to puke.

Re: Ugly atf [Re: brianl703] #4684297
03/04/18 04:41 PM
03/04/18 04:41 PM
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 1,915
Ontario Canada
cjcride Offline
cjcride  Offline
Joined: Nov 2009
Posts: 1,915
Ontario Canada
Originally Posted By: brianl703
Originally Posted By: Donald
It's when the ATF looks like driveway sealer that you have problems.


Or when it smells so bad you want to puke.

I had a buddy tell me the new Valvoline ATF smell makes him want to puke.

Last edited by cjcride; 03/04/18 04:42 PM.
Re: Ugly atf [Re: cjcride] #4684532
03/04/18 07:56 PM
03/04/18 07:56 PM
Joined: Mar 2014
Posts: 3,472
NJ
Leo99 Online content
Leo99  Online Content
Joined: Mar 2014
Posts: 3,472
NJ
Originally Posted By: cjcride
Originally Posted By: brianl703
Originally Posted By: Donald
It's when the ATF looks like driveway sealer that you have problems.


Or when it smells so bad you want to puke.

I had a buddy tell me the new Valvoline ATF smell makes him want to puke.


Can't be worse than gear fluid with 230k miles on it. I was quite hungover when I got under the Rav4 to drain the transfer case for the first time. Had no idea that stuff stinks as much as it does.


Without data you're just another person with an opinion. W. E. Deming

2003 Corolla 250,000 miles (RIP)
2004 Corolla 125,000 miles
2004 Rav4 370,000 miles
2015 Camry 70,000 miles
Re: Ugly atf [Re: Billbert] #4684941
03/05/18 08:59 AM
03/05/18 08:59 AM
Joined: Jun 2002
Posts: 19,484
Iowegia - USA
MolaKule Offline
MolaKule  Offline
Joined: Jun 2002
Posts: 19,484
Iowegia - USA
Originally Posted By: Billbert
Recently purchased a 2007 Rav4 limited 4 wd. 175,000 on the clock. Dropped the pan and changed the filter, trans fluid looked like black motor oil. I used maxlife, the trans shifted OK before the change, but much smoother after. Gonna do a couple of drain and refills in the next weeks, but the weather here isn't cooperating right now (it's snowing) & I don't have a garage so guess I'll wait a couple of weeks.


Yep, keep changing it until it clears up.

I bought a Nissan Frontier 4X4 a couple of years ago with about 32,000 miles on it and changed the AT transmission fluid because it had the appearance of a well used 10W30 motor oil.

It took six drains and refills before it cleared up.


"Molon Labe" (Greek, King Leonidas to the Persians regarding their weapons "Come and Take Them!").
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